Thursday, April 24, 2014

Due South UXO American Strong Ale


3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Chad9976 (1087) - Albany, New York, USA - APR 24, 2014
I poured a 12oz can into a tulip glass. There was no freshness date. I got this in a trade with a friend from Florida (thanks, Matt!).

Appearance: Gloomy shade of brick red/orange. Pours to a huge, beige, frothy head which laces and retains very well.

Smell: Mostly rich malty sweetness with a slightly buttery note, though significant hop presence as well.

Taste: The “American Strong Ale” style is kind of an umbrella term for beers that aren’t quite imperial IPAs and not quite barleywines. Due South’s “UXO” definitely fits the bill for the style, though. It’s got plenty of malt to its body, but with an equally strong hop presence, though not especially bitter to truly be an IPA. Perhaps “Imperial Amber/Red Ale” would be the more apropos description for those of us hung up on styles.

The palette to this beer is actually quite complex, though difficult to describe. It has the sweet confectionery-like maltiness of an English strong ale, but with piney/resiny hop flavor and bitterness of American hops (I’m guessing Chinook). Hints of cherry can be found throughout, along with some toffee and butterscotch. Despite all that, it’s not what I would describe as delicious, but rather just plain good.

Drinkability: Due South UXO American Strong Ale probably isn’t meant to be something you suck down quickly considering it’s 8.1% ABV. A full-bodied beer in every aspect with a noticeable, but gentle, alcohol presence in terms of taste and warmth. The actual mouthfeel is extremely comfortable with a soft, smooth texture and easy finish. A beer ideal to pair with (or enjoy as) dessert. 
Grade: 7/10