Sunday, 11 February 2018

Eight Degrees Russian Imperial Stout

Origin: Ireland | Date: 2013 | ABV: 9% | On The Beer Nut: December 2013

I'll be interested to find out what happens to it after a year or two of cellaring I wrote about this tropically hoppy imperial stout. Here we are now, after a little over four.

The aroma isn't hoppy but is still fabulous, all strong coffee and treacle sponge. The dark roast is the flavour's main component, and there's a liquorice and tobacco bitterness. Both are very much on the down-low, and whatever fresh hop character there used to be has faded gracefully into the background. I struggled to find any real distinguishing features before I realised that the lack of them is the beer's real strong point.

Often with aged beers you get new flavours emerging, bitterness accentuating, Brett growing stronger, hot phenols and sherry oxidation coming to the fore. This has none of that: it tastes perfectly fresh and is ridiculously smooth and easy to drink. Perhaps it's a little plain for a beer of this style, at this strength, cellared for this long, but it's hard to be unhappy with it. My glass emptied much faster than they usually do for this blog.

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