Barrel House series
Ale brewed with pumpkin flavor and cocoa nibs and aged in bourbon barrels
As I write this, I’m still recovering from a cold that probably would have killed a normal person, so take everything with a grain of salt. And a lot of mucus.
Spooky pours a neat, dark color. Definitely different from a normal pumpkin beer but we can attribute that to the bourbon barrels. What’s very scary, though, is that there aren’t many spices on the nose.
Hops – 3 Maybe it’s the cocoa, or the cold medicine I’ve been mainlining like a college kid on sunday funday, but there is something slightly bitter here.
Malts – 6.5 It is malty, but it’s not a malt bomb. You won’t find the regular roasty, caramel flavors in here. Which is a shame, I think it would lend something nice to the cocoa nibs.
Carbonation – 6 It’s there, and you can notice it if you try.
Character – 7 There is some neat stuff in here but it doesn’t last. Like your dad passing all the cool attractions and rural toy shops on the road trip to Disney, you go “OOOH! Let’s go to.. oh we’re moving on. Got it.” You get teases of stuff, which is great in certain situations, but I expect my beers to be hands on and fully nude. There’s a nice boozy taste in there, too.
Palate – 8 It all plays well, sure, but there just needs to be more… everything. Maybe that’s why it’s so spooky, you get haunted for a short taste, and when you go to investigate that mysterious flavor in the hallway, it’s disappeared right behind you.
Overall – 7.5 I know, what the hell is going on with that? Well, when you have all the winning ingredients and a cool bottle, I expect something of substance. Any lingering flavor would be great, but it’s all just a shade. Intangible. Ghost jokes.
Spooky had me frightened with anticipation. Cocoa nibs!? PUMPKIN!? BOURBON!? That’s like all I need in life! But much like life, all of those elements are quickly fleeting. Maybe they did all this on purpose as a really cool, disappointing ghost joke. But that hope is dashed when I read “we loaded up an Imperial Pumpkin ale with natural chocolate flavor from cocoa nibs”. And then my eyes catch it: “brewed with Pumpkin Flavor”. I think I just had the Taco Bell of beers. NOW WITH TONS AND TONS OF STEAK, LIKE 10x MORE STEAK!* *by the way, that’s compared to an item with 0 steak in it, chump.
I say “boo” if that’s the case. Give me pumpkin, not flavor. I won’t say it puts the poo in “Spooky” but it really needed more body.
That was another one.