Saturday, November 7, 2009

Bam Noire Dark Farmhouse Ale

Yesterday on the way home from work I stopped at Total Wine to see what was up. Wow! Right by the entry, on the "tempting shelves", were dozens of new bottles of beer that were not there before. Most of them were celebrating the arrival of the Christmas season, or at least Santa since he typically seems to be mistaken for the Messiah by corporate America. But the new beers were a good surprise!

The Santa ones I remember buying were the famous Santa's Butt, Delirium Noel, Santa's Private Reserve, and maybe one or two others. There were some other new entries as well, including all the Flying Dog beers that I previously dragged back to South Florida from Orlando since they weren't available here at the time. I'm excited about my newest beer options! This was an "A" performance so far by TW.

But then I went over to wine tasting central where there were 8 glasses half-full for smelling, but no one pouring. I just left. And at the cash register, one of the 12-packs rang up for a dollar more than the price I paid last week and a dollar more than the label where I grabbed it said it cost. So I called them on it. Supervisor, two trips back and forth to verify what I said and I got my dollar back, but not my 15 minutes. During that 15 minutes, I got some "we raised our rates but some of the signs haven't been changed" chit-chat nonsense that I didn't really care about. Usually when you raise your rates, you want to do it as quietly and smoothly as possible. And this was neither! BTW, buy your 12 packs of Sam Adams at Publix this week as they have a better deal (and are almost surely more convenient). "B-" performance in the end; probably just a lack of studying for a few sections of the test.

This afternoon I cracked open a wine-sized bottle of Bam Noire Dark Farmhouse Ale brewed by Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales in Dexter, Michigan. I must say that I am intrigued but not exactly sure what I'm getting myself into here. If I gather the label story correctly, the creepy Jack Russell Terrier with bat wings and a black glowing eye on the label is Bam Noire. Now I am not sure why I didn't think of that for Halloween. Maybe next year.

The aroma is earthy, malty and there is this distinct black licorice scent everywhere. Flavors remind me of tea and start out a bit spicy. Pretty big carbonation to start. After I drank a little I started to taste these underlying sour fruity flavors, a little tangy too. Other fruits including peaches and plums and berries stick their two cents in here as well. Interesting for sure. For some reason I feel like I'm outside in the woods at my grandparents' house, but that could just be because of the farmhouse suggestion on the label. Toward the end of the beer, as it warmed, I tasted more malty flavors, and the finish is more of that tea flavor. I guess I liked it although it's not like most other beer styles I'm more familiar with. Drink some yourself!

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