The Bruery - Smokey and the Bois
- ABV: 16.2%
- Bottle Size: 750-ml
- Serving Temperature: 53–60° F
- Suggested Glassware: Snifter, tulip, or Bordeaux glass
The last 72 bottles have come from our president’s personal cellar, so this time, once it’s gone, it’s gone for good! Perfect for the upcoming holidays, Smokey and the Bois was blended from three different Bruery beers: Black Tuesday (The Bruery’s famous ~20% ABV imperial stout), Bois (an exceptional bourbon-barrel-aged old ale), and Smoking Wood (an imperial rye porter brewed with beech- and cherrywood smoked malts) in a ratio of 30%-30%-40%, respectively. And, for even more dimension and complexity, the final blend was aged with vanilla beans and Ecuadorian Nacional cacao nibs.
Aroma on this is quite generous: vanilla, almond, powdered doughnuts, cotton candy. Notes of bitter chocolate, coffee, and smoke are met by mellowing influences like crème brûlée and milk chocolate. A warming integrated vein of alcohol provides a nice lift. The finely bubbled, and relatively subtle, CO2 adds just enough extra texture for everything to present itself fully.
Color? You wouldn’t want to be trying to swim through this beer. A deep, chocolate brown lightens to a cola color, a maple-syrup-ness at the edge. From Black Tuesday’s contributions: char, burnt caramel, bitter chocolate. Those are matched with the layered, caramel-y richness this gets from Bois, adding heavily detailed core notes of toffee, nougat, and the caramelized sugars that serve as a crucial note for this beer. Then that third blending, the Smoking Wood, adds in softer bittering elements from its beechwood- and cherrywood-smoked malts.
We found such richness and generosity here, an accomplished blend that one would be hard pressed to match the intricacy of, and with an ultimate presentation that left us feeling that it was all planned this way (it was): a bit of foam, plush and warming alcohol, plus just a ton of intricacy from the blending beers. Put this beside a cigar, or something chocolaty and simple; the peppery wrapper of something like an Opus X or Ashton VSG could do some very good things here. This beer was built to last, so don’t be afraid to allocate some room in the cellar.
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