Cigar City Brewing Barrel Aged ‘Raspberry Halo’ Imperial Stout


37603480_904079869776159_2685250571782324224_n“Halos often signify enlightenment, harmony, and majesty, sentiments that all come to mind when contemplating this rich and complex beer.  Crested atop this imperial stout is a radiant crown of juicy raspberries offering pronounced fruitiness and acidity to balance the beer’s formidable body.  Heavy, indeed, is the head that wears the halo.”

Glassware: Tulip.

Appearance: It hits the glass like engine oil! A loosely held brown head swells to a thumb in height before it settles to a wispy overlay. We’re seeing spotty lace as we imbibe.

Aroma: Showing a good amount of aggression but the sweet dark fruits, heady vanilla and subtle raspberry notes ensure it’s all nicely balanced by the time it hits the olfactory’s. Once it warms the bourbon becomes more dominant, supported by the woody oak and nose-tingling alcohol. Behind it all is the rich and sweet base of molasses, prunes, licorice, leather and dark chocolate.

Flavour: It comes on strong and vicious. Unlike the aroma there’s no initial grace period it’s just an all out assault by bourbon, oak, alcohol, molasses and stewed dark fruits. Just a hint of raspberry developing early on in the mid where a somewhat bitter espresso note is introduced. The whole gang then re-assembles for a robust finish offering molasses, chocolate bullets and bourbon the rear.

Mouthfeel: Sharp, sticky and muscly with medium-full body. Low co2 with some discernible bitterness (40 IBU).

Overall: If you like your barrel aged stouts a little less aggressive then drink this cooler. Needless to say if you rather it the other way then let him warm up. Personally we like them at room temperature but in this case it was better cool. Yeah, we’re confused too! Solid but we’ve had better from CC.