Original Post: Smokey the Beer
Style: Smoked Beer
Brew Date: January 11, 2012
Serve Date: February 2012
Before even opening this beer, I can’t help but notice that the fill looks awful low. I found two bottles of this in the basement and they’re both like that. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t bottled that way, I’m not sure what has happened.
Getting the bottle opener anywhere near the cap has proven that this extremely over carbonated. This should be fun. I’ve got a bit of a gusher on my hands, but I haven’t lost too much.
Now that I have a glass that is about a third full of beer and overflowing with foam, the next things I’m seeing is a bunch of brown specks in the foam. Is this from the liquid smoke? I guess. It smells really smoky. Tasting the foam, it is all smoke.
On the first sip it is very smoky but there is some significant sweetness behind the smoke. People usually compare smoked beers to bacon but I’m getting more campfire here. It doesn’t taste like marshmallows, but the smoke followed by sweetness is reminding me of s’mores anyway.
There is no trace of hops, but under all the smoke I still get a nice malt flavor. It initially just comes off as sweet, but then it settles into something like German Pilsner malt flavor. If the smoke was a lot more subtle, this could actually be pretty enjoyable.
The beer is a nice orange fringing on light brown. It is a bit cloudy but if it weren’t for the liquid smoke residue in the head, it would look pretty nice.
I always thought the smoke in this beer seemed like a separate layer of flavor rather than blending with the rest of the beer’s character. I hoped that with some aging it would meld better. Instead, it seems that the smoke has just completely taken over. Campfire is really the best description I can give. I wish I had a sample without the liquid smoke added because it really does seem like there could be something enjoyable underneath there.
The smoke gets more intense and is actually starting to taste almost burnt now that I’m getting closer to the end of the beer. Initially I was thinking this wasn’t as bad as I expected. Now it’s getting worse. I have a couple sips left, but there isn’t much more to say. Don’t put liquid smoke in your beer and if you do, don’t save it for two and a third years.