Ding Points: 55.00
Pour: 70.00, Nose: 60.00, Palate: 50.00, Mouth: 60.00, Global: 50.00
In the impressive, corked & caged bottle. Part of the Barrel Room Collection. Jet black with half-finger head. No lace, but ultimately a pleasing, spotty tan head.
Sour notes in the nose, in fact almost sinus clearing. The sour, lacto element is carried through into the taste, but it does subside a little as the bottle is consumed. Light burn in the chest which is a bit of a paradox given that the alcohol is not especially prominent in the taste.
Light mouthfeel, in fact it’s quite thin and increasingly acidic. The beer is drinkable in terms of its weight, but the tastes are an odd combo of sour milk notes and light alcohol. This does very little for me, and of course is disappointingly expensive into the bargain.
The chocolate element is that of milk, and it reminds me of that slightly sickly, Hersey chocolate nonsense.
Carbonation is a touch prickly and annoying, and the milky element continues to grate. Belgian? I don’t really get it. Oak? Mmmm, perhaps a little in the dry finish, but neither of these attributes are prominent, or indeed features that would come to mind when drinking it.
If you are looking for a Belgian Strong Dark Ale, in my opinion you are going to be dreadfully disappointed by this beer. If you are looking for an American, Imperial Milk Stout, then maybe you will be happier.
Not sure if the age of this beer has something to do with its current performance but either way this is not drinking too hot right now.
Other: 9.0% ABV, Belgian Strong Dark (not!).