Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Dieu du Ciel! Solstice d’Hiver

Fill date: 9/8/16

Judged to 2015 BJCP Style Guidelines for: 22C American Barleywine

AROMA: Moderately-strong dark malty presence with noticeable dark fruit aromas and some confectionery notes of caramel, chocolate, toffee, etc. Subtle honey/lemon presence of oxidation. Hops are muted and barely noticeable. Alcohol is still quite prominent and just slightly medicinal. 9/12

APPEARANCE: Very deep burgundy/reddish-brown (27-34 SRM). Hazy body. Small tan foam never completely dissipates. 2/3

FLAVOR: Sweet and alcoholic throughout. Lovely confectionery-like notes of caramel, toffee, treacle and slight chocolate. Intense malt base creates for some dark fruit flavor as well (especially red apple, raisin, plum). Alcohol is bold, and a little distracting, but clean (no burning sensation). Bitterness is firm enough to notice and provides some balance to the palette. Aftertaste is lightly sweet, but also a tad boozy. Subtle honey/lemon presence of oxidation. 15/20

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-full body; moderate carbonation. Not quite as thick as most barleywines (though body and CO2 may have declined with aging). The 10.2% ABV creates for plenty of warmth, though it is never hot or burning. Texture is smooth overall. 4/5

OVERALL IMPRESSION: A fine barleywine that's mostly to-spec for the style. Less hoppy than most American examples, but less malty than most English examples. 7/10


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