Odyssey 001 (Siren Craft Brew)

Style: Blended Barrel Aged Imperial Stout

12.4% ABV

 

Brewery’s Note on Series: “Our Odyssey range is a collectionof beers that have been blended.  Sometimes a blend of the same beer in
different barrels, sometimes very different beers that work together in a way
that makes the sum greater than the individual parts.   Blending is a
journey and also a challenge, and we felt that the challenges faced in the
Odyssey stories were an apt description for our beers.”

Brewery’s Note on Beer: “A blend of Barrel Aged Imperial
Stouts. The base beer for Odyssey 001 is a decadent rich imperial stout brewed
with Muscavado Sugar & liquorice root and has been aging in Banyuls,
bourbon and brandy barrels for over a year. The final blend is 40% Banyuls, 20%
Brandy & Bourbon and then to add a little zip 20% Liquid Mistress. Rich,
Decadent, Indulgent”

The beer pours like mud. Thick and dark, with a definite
viscosity, it sits in the glass like midnight, while browning clouds of tan
bubbles form a small, frothy head over top. When splashed against the glass,
the beer leaves thick sheen’s of alcoholic legs. The legs form alongside tiny
galaxies of lacing, which slowly form into amoeboid lumps on the glass wall. In
body, this beer is an opaque mystery that seems to suck in light around it,
giving the beer a thick and decadent look. On the nose, the beer smells of
musty barrels, sherry, homebrewed grappa I sampled from this guy once, light
rum, baker’s spices, and so much more. Sweet chocolate and a touch of plum
juice lurk beneath everything else, but really, this beer is just layer after
layer of barrel complexity. On tongue, the beer begins chocolate sweet, slowly
building in a spicy alcohol, though the sweetness prevails. Fruity, dark fruit
notes blend with the chocolate sweetness, and bring subtle accents of acidity,
too. The finish sees the tannic bitterness, which lurks throughout the sip,
rise to a mellow balance that dries the tongue and gives the sip further
complexity. It’s sort of like a dry dessert wine. In flavor, I don’t quite have
the language to describe it. I assume I’m getting a lot of Banyuls flavor, but
I didn’t even know what that was till this review, so… Bourbon is mellow, and
predominantly evident as an earthy barrel must that adds complexity to the
decadent chocolate syrup, fudge, and toffee. Spicy alcohol gives nice structure
to the sip and pulls out a slight bite from the tannic wood, drying the palate
and evening the sip. The finish is of spice, faint plums, chocolate and smooth
coffee, which slowly blends into complex flavors that I just don’t have the
language to describe. As it warms, slight raisin and oatmeal flavors enter,
adding rich crust to the sip. This is a decadent sipper for sure. In the mouth,
the beer is fluffy, sinfully smooth, and full, but with a good level of
attenuation that doesn’t make this heavy on the palate at all. Hell, this is
svelte for 12%, with a dry finish, and a luxurious and smooth mouthfeel that
does not match up with the ABV. This beer is a treat and, honestly, one of the
most complex and delicious stouts I’ve ever sipped. Smooth, with just the right
amount of spicy booze, beautiful barrel expression, complex liquor flavors that
I cannot begin to fully describe, and endless sipping enjoyment with hardly any
hint of the booze. I can do the entire 375 ml bottle by myself, no problem,
which is impressive for a 12% stout. This is the perfect nightcap to an
evening, and a great thing to end a victorious Super Bowl night… Cheers and
beers folk.

 

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