Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Today I'm drinking Bohr, a stout brewed with raisins and spice by Cigar City Brewing in Tampa, Florida. Being a scientist in my former life, I of course had heard of Niels Bohr, depicted as a young man in a photo on the label. But the beer, never heard of it until Ed Roberts left it after stopping by for dinner last week. He picked it up at the brewery last week.

Now knowing who Niels Bohr is did not give me a freakin' clue as to why Joey and Wayne would be naming their beer after the winner of the Nobel Prize in Physics from 1922. Heck, I didn't even know these guys could read anything but skateboard stickers (OK, guys, I am just teasing, you are awesome, it's the beer talking, drinking solo, LOL). That's when you start reading the side of the label, designed by Juan Alvarez of Humble Wear.

It starts with Bohr's biography and takes you through his experience with atoms and radiation, suggesting he's a great scientific collaborator, mentoring many scientists that came after him. And because of that (and his nationality), this collaboration beer was named for him. This beer was brewed at Cigar City, and the recipe was conceived by Mikkel of Mikkeller (Bohr and Mikkel are Denmark Homeboys from different generations) and brewed in collaboration. There is another collaboration named Dirac, where Wayne Wambles of Cigar City took a similar idea and created his version of the recipe. (PS. I have that beer too, you live near Miramar?). I'll let you in on another secret. It's a good thing there was lots happening on the label to keep me busy because it took quite a while to drink this wine bottle.

Besides saying this was bottled in 2011, there is one more piece of researchable material: the phrase contraria sunt complementa. Great, now they're using Latin? Luckily I found a blog with that exact name, written by a guy whose favorite scientist is... wait for it...  Niels Bohr. Go Figure! The author goes on to explain that this phrase was on Bohr's Coat of Arms and means that Opposites are Complementary. And here I thought Paula Abdul came up with that quote! (And yes, you're right. She was hot then!)

OK. Jeez. Yes, I did drink the beer!

Luscious sweet chocolate aroma. Brown sugar and roasted coffee too. Super complex and totally amazing! OMG, I just took a sip. The End!

Just kidding. Delicious! Rich chocolate with plenty of roasted malt and even a hint of nuts in the beginning. Boozy from the start, but in a very good way! Molasses and some fruity raisin and cherry are other flavors that add some additional dimensions to this beer. The 10% alcohol is warming, especially in the chest, and does a great job of keeping the sweetness in check. As the beer warms, some vanilla and coffee flavors also start to creep into the mix of this ever-evolving beer. Every aspect of this beer is working in complete harmony.

Texture is awesome, so velvety smooth and milky. Some hoppy and spicy nibbles assist the alcohol in this great balancing act, start to finish. As you get toward the end of the bottle, the alcohol actually seems to be a little more prominent, providing more of a burn. A little hotter, but still a welcome aspect. Carbonation is not big but is perfect. Spectaculiciosis, as Marathon Marie might say! If you can, grab a bottle! Now!

Volume I - Atomic Theory and the Description of Nature (Philosophical Writings of Niels Bohr Series, Vol 1) -- Niels Bohr

Newman's Own Organics Organic California Raisins, 15-Ounce Cans (Pack of 6)

Cigar City Mafia: A Complete History of the Tampa Underworld


Vanessa said...

Mmm! Sounds great! Hopefully there will still be some of this hanging around when I'm over at the brewery in a couple of weeks :)

dale said...

Sounds great! Gotta get some....

mike said...

Looks good and the photography looks good as well. Was there an issue there. I always like your photography. So much so that Joel once posted a pic of bottle/glass and I told him he had it on the wrong side.



marie said...


You were a scientist huh? That much.

Beer Drinker Rob said...

Definitely a tasty beer!

Mike, yeah, I took this with my iPhone b/c my wife took my other camera to Colombia yesterday. My other pictures are much crisper as this has some haze and washout. I'm not sure if those are the technical terms though. :)

I was a scientist. I even worked with radioactive materials after college. Niels Bohr would be so proud!