Saturday, May 12, 2012

Dark Depths Baltic IPA

Today I'm drinking Dark Depths Baltic IPA brewed by The Boston Beer Company in Boston, Cincinnati, or Breinigsville, Pennsylvania. According to the label, this is Batch Number 1 of their small batch experimental series. I like to call this the "anti-Samuel-Adams-banner-branding" series since that packaging is nowhere to be seen. Instead, this line of 22 ouncers offers great art work with the ingredient list creatively incorporated into the piece. This particular label is one of my favorites so far. An old divers helmet is now being used as home by an eel, presumably deep in the ocean.

There is a story on the back titled Dark, Fierce, And Blustery which explains the combination of styles to form this Baltic IPA. This is an ale brewed with lager yeast. Interesting.

Roasted malt and nutty aroma, with a chocolate base. Chocolate flavors and an ashy and burnt roasted malt are dominant in the beginning. Makes you feel like you are drinking a cigar, ashes included, very drying. Now before we get too far with that angle, a definite lemony astringent bitterness attacks from beneath the malty surface. That aspect is persistent and aggressive. I really dislike that sharp contrast with no balance, very disagreeable!

That lemon astringency continues to beat on the ash try, over and over again. Pine and coffee and something spicy show up as additional flavors, but they are not really very significant. If you like Black IPAs, this beer might be a gig for you too. The 7.6% alcohol is drying and noticeable at the end but fine. Best part of the beer? The label art, hands down! I'd find something else.

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