Monday, April 1, 2013

The Beer Diviner Got Your Back

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Chad9976 (842) - Albany, New York, USA - APR 1, 2013
I poured a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass. There was no date on the bottle, however, I bought it directly from the brewer so I’m assuming it’s fairly fresh. It cost $5 ($0.23 per ounce).

Appearance: Opaque black body. Forms a small, dark tan, foamy head which doesn’t completely evaporate and leaves some lacing on the glass.

Smell: Strong vanilla aroma, similar to cake batter. A general sweet stout scent with hints of dairy.

Taste: Though "Got Your Back" is an imperial coffee oatmeal stout, I actually get more of a vanilla flavor from it than anything else. It’s reminiscent of Southern Tier’s Crème Brûlée stout, but without any cloying characteristics. This is a delicious dessert beer for sure and well balanced so no individual flavors overwhelm the palette.

Much like a milk stout up front with a sweet dairy flavor, though this is probably due to the oatmeal its brewed with. A hefty bitterness breaks through in the middle of the swig, which is a touch dry, almost salty (like peanut butter), which then gives way to a smooth rush of vanilla sweetness. The ingredients list is unusual, but interesting: seven types of malts, two hops, decaf Sumatra French coffee, and a Belgian yeast strain are responsible for this palette and they work together extremely well. I’m a fan for sure.

Drinkability: You’d never know "Got Your Back" was 9% ABV if you were to drink it blind. Absolutely no alcohol presence in the nose or in the taste anywhere, making this a highly drinkable beer. Even though it’s brewed with Belgian yeast it doesn’t have a spastic, fizzy mouthfeel. While on the thicker side, it’s not a viscous stout and its quite comfortable in the mouth with only a mildly dry aftertaste. It goes down easily making it an ideal sipper, though I could see it pairing well with the right meal. 
Grade: 9/10