Thursday, November 3, 2011

Antares Imperial Stout

Today I'm drinking Antares Imperial Stout brewed by Cerveza Artesenal Antares in Mar del Plata, Argentina. I'm positive that you remember the previous two reviews (and here) but then again, maybe you're new here. Guess what? I met the famous Ofelia yesterday down by her office in Brickell. This time there was a direct beer handoff with no opportunity by the Brickell Bandit to strike again. I got three new beers from Antares including this one.  Everyone say thanks to Ofelia. I already did the Latin kissy half huggy thing! :)

The label is simple but beautiful. I do wish the metallic red colors stood out with a little more contrast against the black background though. If you look closely, what appears from afar to be just squiggly red designs is actually squiggly Spanish words that may as well be designs. LOL. Same goes for the side panel. Translations are welcome in the comments. I've had a guy do Japanese translations there before which was pretty awesome. Anyway, I have very high hopes for my 330mL bottle.

Chocolate, cocoa and vanilla in the aroma, quite strong and welcoming. Chocolate and bitter roasted flavors are how you begin, a little harsh and with no sweetness whatsoever. Next, some hoppy and ever more bitter coffee flavors attack the palate. Any amount of sweet balance would have been greatly appreciated. The body is medium and on the low end of where you might expect an imperial stout to fall. So far, this is much more reminiscent of a porter, and a porter which has the harsh bitter roastiness that makes it a style I don't adore.

A little vanilla and spiciness and the 8.5% alcohol heat show up toward the end, all welcome editions. The carbonation is OK but unfortunately it highlights all the negatives I mentioned above. You finish with a funny metallic aftertaste and then repeat a handful more times. I had no problem finishing the bottle. Some of the flavors were good, but this beer was desperately crying for some balancing sweetness and something to take the edge off of the bitter roasted flavors.

I much preferred the Antares Kolsch and Porter that I had before. I'll try this again next time I'm in Argentina. And I still have a Scotch Ale and Barley Wine that are getting lonely in my refrigerator. Until next time...

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