Fifty-Fifty Brewing ‘Eclipse’ BA Imperial Stout w Honey


36836992_895483810635765_1793229728904118272_n“Eclipse is our brewer’s grand opus, barrel-aged imperial stout.  Every year we search for and source an eclectic range of freshly spent barrels from unique distillers and vintners. The search is always an adventure, visiting old friends and meeting new ones. In 2007, we released our first Eclipse aged in Old Fitzgerald barrels, and started getting some great reviews and awards soon after. That said, we’re in it for the fun and creativity, when our brewer’s intent becomes a reality, and a new blend surprises our senses.”

Glassware: Tulip.

Appearance: Opaque black with a short tan head which quickly collapsed. It still produces a healthy lace though.

Aroma: Offering tonnes of sweetness. Mostly maple syrup, vanilla, honey and caramel but it’s well countered by a hearty roast, mild coffee and woody oak. We keep picking up what seems to be milk sugars/lactose but that surely must be an adjunct scent from the barrels. Getting more licorice, booze, treacle and charred malt as it settles in. Superb.

Flavour: Tasting plenty of sweetness but there is certainly more emphasis on the roasty characters as opposed to the aroma. Subtle milk sugars, maple, vanilla and honey marries up with chocolate, cocoa, coffee and oak exceptionally well. The warming booze offers a slight ascendancy as it rolls in to an ultimately smooth finish with subtle dry roast and espresso on the rear.

Mouthfeel: Slick and slightly oily texture. Medium body, mild co2. The standout is the unbelievably well concealed ABV (11%).

Overall: This is a seriously good drop. It’s one in a series of beers that is released annually which are all aged in their own carefully selected barrels and all identified by a different coloured wax seal. All of which are now on our must try list! Brilliant.