Beer Review: New Belgium 1554

Brewer: New Belgium Brewing Company
Name: 1554
Style: Belgian Dark Ale
Price: $5.50

Appearance: Pours dark brown and nearly black with ruby hues on the edges. Off-white thick head that has excellent retention. When it dissipates it leaves behind a light brown foam over the top of the brew and inherently in the lacing as well.

Smell: Initially it is reminiscent of chocolate milk and plum. Some of the more subtle scents are earth, coffee, caramel, and marshmallow.

Taste: The first flavors are chocolate, caramel, toffee, brown sugar, butter, and moist soil. The more secondary flavors include raisin and cake. There is little to no bitterness to it and hence it is not very hoppy. Very light sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and medium bodied. Crisp carbonation and a creamy finish.

Overall: The beer is modeled after a beer recipe from 1554 and it certainly maintains an old world belgian style flavor and appearance. Some of the best selling points is that though it appears deep dark and sludgy and mean it is actually smooth and creamy with notes primarily of chocolate and light coffee.


Beer Review: Dogfish Head – Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew

Name: Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew

Brewery: Dogfish Head

Location: Delaware, United States

Style: American Double Stout

Stats: ABV 9.0, IBU 38

Price: $11 / 750ml

  • Appearance: Deep dark and muddy thick. The tan head has great fantastic retention which is better than most in the similar category. Lasting, creamy, huge.
  • Aroma: Classic expectations from the style, roasted coffee, sweet caramel, dark chocolate, blah blah blah. What’s interesting is that you get heavy smoke and the honey is so thick it reminds me of a block of fresh honeycomb. The alcohol is masked by the heavy chocolate.
  • Flavor: This full bodied brew is deep and complicated. Though creamy it is delicate and though flat it is complicated. I get innumerable roots and heavily intertwined flavors of gesho root (which reminds me ginseng and rutabaga). There are very intense interludes of dark flowers, purple fruit, and raisin followed by a crescendo of pleasant brown sugar &  dry spice (never thought I would say that ever).
  • Overall: This beer is just about perfect. It has a long finish, moderate sweetness, a completely muted acidity, light tannic character and an overall amazing experience. This beer has been in the cellar for a year now it simple got better.

Where should it be placed: This beer is perfect for your cellar, to be drank independently  and I would definitely recommend it for a beer list (though it’s extremely seasonal).

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