In following what has become the standard format, here’s my review of Adroit Theory’s B/A/Y/S Imperial Stout. First, from ATBC:
Ghost 001 – For first batch of B/A/Y/S, we started with a relatively straight forward stout recipe that we quickly scaled up to Imperial status. The final grain bill was 39 pounds on a 1/2 barrel system!
We also wanted to add a more pronounced hop profile than typically found in such a beer. We selected two of my favorites: Simcoe and Amarillo. While the final product did not have a pronounced citrusy hop profile, the bitterness in the flavor profile is quite nice.
To balance the richness of the brew, we added hazelnuts for a nutty character. We then added cherries to boost the residual sweet flavor. Both are subtle, but welcome additions.
Finally, to give the beer a truly unique experience, we aged the beer for 3 weeks on reclaimed chestnut staves. Chestnut is an extremely rare specie of wood, and has a pleasing aroma when
cut. We thought, what better way to enhance the beer.
After cracking open the very artsy bottle, I poured into a pint glass. The beer poured very black as you would expect, with very little head that disappeared a little too quickly. It had a pleasant malty aroma. I really expected to pick up some more aromas from the Chestnut, but it didn’t really come through for me.
The first taste gave a very full, almost creamy mouth feel. The carbonation was just about right. The malt really came through on this beer, while the hops provided a well balanced bitterness. I poured this very cold and tasted it that way first and while I did note some residual sweetness, I couldn’t pick out the cherries. After letting it warm up a bit, the cherry flavor came through very slightly and in just about the perfect balance. After a few sips, I noted an aftertaste which gradually became apparent as the hazelnuts.
Overall, I really enjoyed this beer. I am a bit stout fan and would definitely purchase this if it were for sale. Thanks to Mark and Nina for including me in the inaugural batch. I was psyched to see it show up in my mailbox.