Friday, March 26, 2010

Sierra Nevada 30th Anniversary

Sierra Nevada 30th Anniversary
"Fritz and Ken's Ale"
Style: Imperial Stout
Purchased at 99 Bottles

Aroma: Light hint of dark fruit up front in the nose with some lingering chocolate. Hop aroma comes off the beer as floral, and there is some slight roasted grain in the background. Overall nose is generally light.

Appearance: As expected this beer pours ink black and easily forms a rich nut brown head with good retention. Some foam lacing clings to the side of the glass as you drink it down, and the alcohol seems to provide some legs to the beer as well.

Flavor: Hard hitting dark chocolate smacks the mouth right away. The chocolate comes off as nearly burnt as roasted character blends into deep chocolate sweetness. Alcohol spice enters the labyrinth of flavors as dark fruits find their way through to your tongue. Hop bitterness bites the back and top of your mouth before the beer finishes off with yet more roasted bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with medium carbonation. All the roasted and burnt chocolate flavors play on your palate with nearly puckering dryness, but there is just enough sweetness to leave slight stickiness behind. Hop bitterness tingles the back of the throat toward the finish.

Overall: The aroma doesn’t compare to the deeply complex flavor profile of this beer. Incredibly dark, roasted chocolate create almost a battle between the alcohol spice and dark fruit inside your mouth. Palate fullness warms the mouth throughout and the hop bitterness is just enough to show a noted presence. While it lacks some aromatic beauty, this is an engaging beer to behold.

I rated this beer an “A” on BeerAdvocate.

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Beer enthusiast and advocate. Recognized beer judge and traveler of west coast beer destinations.