‘Tis the season for big, flavorful, warm, dark beers. If you’ve read the last few posts, while we don’t dig the short days, we do dig these winter seasonal beers – especially when they have been allowed to hibernate in a bourbon barrel.
On deck today we have the Bourbon Barrel-Aged Drafty Kilt, a scotch ale from Monday Night Brewing down in Atlanta. Just pouring this beer, I can smell the alcohol nose from the barrel. This beer pours a dark brown, with a touch of redness, medium, off-white, head that sticks around and laces the glass. On the nose I’m finding notes of roast, caramel, some fruit notes – cherry maybe, barrel tannins and vanilla. On the tongue this beer is a pleasant mouthful. I’m finding a caramel sweetness, some toasty bread-like qualities, dried fruit and a big bourbon character. Wow. Each sip warms the chest – especially on that first exhale after the sip. On the palate this beer coats the mouth very well, body is medium to medium full, carbonation is medium and while sweetness prevails there is a slight hop bitterness that can be found.
Final snobs: What a fun beer! At 8.5% this beer is right in the center for the style – but don’t let it fool you, it is strong in flavor. I think I’d prefer to pair this with a sweet dessert – a flourless chocolate cake perhaps, with raspberries. Also, honestly, I’m wishing I had some Stilton cheese as the strong blue-cheese like characters would certainly match well against the strong flavors in this beer. Overall, an enjoyable, rich, beer and a great sipping beer for the season. Good job Monday Night Brewing!