Friday, July 3, 2009

Dogfish Head Palo Santo Marron

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery in Delaware is well known for their unique and top-quality beers. Based on their lineup, the brewers are clearly willing to experiment and try some outrageous ideas.

Dogfish Head Palo Santo Marron
definitely makes me wonder about these guys and where they get their ideas. First, who makes a brown ale at 12% ABV? That's stronger than some wines! Then, they age the ale in a 10,000 gallon wooden cask made of some obscure Paraguayan wood called palo santo, which is apparently Spanish for "holy tree". Because that is typical in brewing...

Do you think they were just sitting around, sampling their products, and throwing out ideas? "What if we made a super alcoholic brown ale, and then aged it in wood? And not just any wood, but something from South America? Yeah, that sounds awesome..."

Regardless of the origins of the idea, it is a home run. This beer is completely unique and delicious. I can't remember ever having a beer quite like this one. It has a strong aroma and taste of roasted malt, with some brown sugar and vanilla flavors to balance it. The alcohol is definitely ever present, and this is one that you'll want to drink slowly.

I'd be really interested in trying the other variations of this recipe. Like, how does it taste if you don't age it in Paraguayan wood? Or if you age it in bourbon casks or something similar? Fascinating beer from fascinating brewers.

Rating = 4.0

Be ready for it. It is a "liquor beer". Basically, it'll warm you up like a scotch and left you feeling satisfied and maybe a bit sleepy.

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