8 Wired Batch 2.18 Oak Aged Imperial Stout

Brewery: 8 Wired Brewing Co.
Country: New Zealand
ABV: 11%
Style: American Imperial Stout
Other Notes: Fermented in open oak vats with dates, jaggery and vanilla beans

Brewer Description: (from bottle) The most regal of stouts. Brewed to commemorate the 18th batch of our new brewery in Warkworth, New Zealand.

My rating: 4
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.97
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.9

Intro: A 500ml bottle with no bottled on or best before date. Poured into a snifter glass.
Appearance: Black in colour with a dark brown hue and a thin brown head that dissipated quickly, but left lots of fine spotty lacing.
Aroma: Roasty dark malts, chocolate, molasses, licorice, prunes, oak, vanilla and a light char.
Taste: What you’d expect from the aroma, roasty, chocolate, prunes, plum, molasses, licorice, oak, vanilla and some light ash.
Mouthfeel: Creamy, full bodied with soft carbonation.
Overall: Nice enjoyable sipper, with good balance of roast, dark fruit and light sweetness.

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8 Wired Barrel Aged Smoked Imperial Porter

Brewery: 8 Wired Brewing Co.
Country: New Zealand
ABV: 11%
Style: Smoked Beer
Other Notes: 2011 vintage

Brewer Description: (from bottle) A Manuka smoked Imperial Porter, refermented with farmhouse yeast & aged in American oak barrels for 18 months.

My rating: 3
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.85
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.8

Intro: A 1 pint 0.9 fl. oz. bottle, 2011 vintage. Poured into a snifter glass.
Appearance: Dark dark brown to black in colour with a half finger brown head that stuck around for a bit while leaving some spotty lacing.
Aroma: Roasty, dark fruit, prunes, raisin, smoke. Maybe just call it smoked prunes.
Taste: Roasty, moderately sour, prunes, raisin, smoked dark fruit, oak, chocolate, cocoa.
Mouthfeel: Full bodied with soft carbonation.
Overall: Interesting flavours which perhaps could be described just as ‘sour smoked prunes’. I’m unsure if this is past its prime, but if there was just a little more roast malt, chocolate, cocoa to balance the sour part, it would’ve been even better.

Fremont B-Bomb Coconut

Brewery: Fremont Brewing Company
Country: USA
ABV: 14%
Style: Winter Warmer
Other Notes: Malts – 2-Row Pale, Crystal-120, Munich, Roast Barley, Carafa-2 and Chocolate. Hops – Columbus, Willamette and US Golding. Adjunct – Coconut. Limited 2018 release.

Brewer Description: (from bottle) Coconut Edition B-Bomb: Imperial Winter Ale with Coconut aged in Bourbon Barrels.

This year’s release of B-Bomb is aged in 8-12-year-old American Oak bourbon barrels and is a blend of 9, 12, and 24-month old barrel-aged Winter Ale. This special edition adds toasted coconut to complement the bourbon, oak, cacao, leather, toffee, and dark coffee notes achieved from its extended barrel aging and barrel blending. Each barrel contributes a different note, and combining each barrel to create a coherent tone is a distinct art and true pleasure. Please do enjoy this unique barrel-aged ale today but know that Coconut Edition B-Bomb will age gracefully for years to come. Don’t Be Afraid To Be Abominable.

My rating: 3
My beeradvocate.com rating: 3.74
My ratebeer.com rating: 3.7

Intro: A 22 fl. oz. bomber, 2018 release. Poured into a snifter glass.
Appearance: Dark dark brown in colour with a thin brown head that dissipated quickly, but left some spotty lacing.
Aroma: Roasted malts, coconut, chocolate, vanilla and molasses with hints of oak and bourbon.
Taste: Roasty, moderate sweetness, bourbon, chocolate, coconut, vanilla, oak, a touch of booze and hints of molasses.
Mouthfeel: Creamy, full bodied with soft carbonation.
Overall: Nice sipper, but it got too sweet as it became warmer. I easily preferred Coffee Cinnamon B-Bomb which I thought was near perfect, over this version.

Fremont B-Bomb Coffee Cinnamon

Brewery: Fremont Brewing Company
Country: USA
ABV: 14%
Style: Winter Warmer
Other Notes: Malts – 2-Row Pale, Crystal-120, Munich, Roast Barley, Carafa-2, and Chocolate. Hops – Columbus, Willamette and US Golding. Adjunct – Coffee and Cinnamon. Limited 2018 release

Brewer Description: (from bottle) Coffee Cinnamon B-Bomb: Imperial Winter Ale with Coffee & Cinnamon aged in Bourbon Barrels.

This year’s release of B-Bomb is aged in 8-12-year-old American Oak bourbon barrels and is a blend of 9, 12, and 24-month old barrel-aged Winter Ale. This special edition adds cold brew coffee and cinnamon bark to complement the bourbon, oak, cacao, leather, toffee, and dark coffee notes achieved from its extended barrel aging and barrel blending. Each barrel contributes a different note, and combining each barrel to create a coherent tone is a distinct art and true pleasure. Please do enjoy this unique barrel-aged ale today but know that Coffee Cinnamon B-Bomb will age gracefully for years to come. Don’t Be Afraid To Be Abominable.

My rating: 5
My beeradvocate.com rating: 4.61
My ratebeer.com rating: 4.5

Intro: A 22 fl. oz. bomber, 2018 release. Poured into a snifter glass.
Appearance: Dark dark brown in colour with a thin brown head that although thin, stuck around, while leaving some nice spotty lacing.
Aroma: Roasty, coffee, cacao, caramel, toffee, bourbon, oak and cinnamon.
Taste: As you’d expect from the aroma, light roast, coffee, cacao, caramel, toffee, bourbon, oak, light cinnamon and a splash of booze.
Mouthfeel: Creamy, light boozy warmth, full bodied, with soft carbonation.
Overall: Amazingly balanced in aroma and taste with wonderful sweetness, light bitterness and alcohol warmth. Great coffee and cinnamon balance. Just a superb sipper.

Highland Park Occupied Space

Brewery: Highland Park Brewery
Country: USA
ABV: 6.2%
Style: American Wild Ale
Other Notes: Batch 3

Brewer Description: (from bottle) Sour Blond Ale barrel aged with Masumoto nectarines.

My rating: 4
My beeradvocate.com rating: 4.25
My ratebeer.com rating: 4

Intro: A 1 pint 0.9 fl. oz. bottle, batch 3. Poured into a 3 Fonteinen stemmed glass.
Appearance: A hazy straw yellow colour with a one finger white head that dissipated quickly and left only sparse to no lacing.
Aroma: Lightly tart, juicy nectarines, peach, apricot, stone fruit, light funk and a tinge of citrus.
Taste: Lightly sour, tart, nectarines, peach, apricot, unripe mango, stone fruit, and lemon with only a hint of oak and funk.
Mouthfeel: Light bodied with moderate carbonation.
Overall: Nice stone fruit aroma and flavours that are both tasty and balanced.