“A rich and indulgent Stout with dominant dark chocolate and coffee flavours. 12 months of maturation in Shiraz barrels adds layers of complexity that will continue to develop in the bottle. Dangerously drinkable.”
Served in a snifter. As predicted this R.I.S pours as black as the night sky with a dense and foamy two finger mound. It holds its shape extremely well and weaves a very healthy lace as it ebbs.
The aroma is bursting at the seems with dark and heavily roasted malts, ash, singed wood, Vegemite, molasses and leather with hints of vanilla and coffee. There’s quite a firm creamy sweetness pushing through too….not so much in lactose or milk sugars but it’s more like marzipan in its delivery. Little hints of cocoa here and there. Very nice aroma indeed.
Flavour wise it’s not as forthcoming as it is on the nose. It’s slightly unrefined and a little bitter upfront but it does mellow out in to a much more creamy and roasty mid palate. Those subtle coffee notes begin to come through late as does the ash and light woody tones. A bit of that bitterness creeps in again as it finishes dry and toasty with coffee and bitter chocolate on the back end.
It’s sharp, dry and slightly unbalanced in the mouth. Quite boozy as well (8% ABV). Mild co2 with medium-full body.
Is it a decent R.I.S? Yes. Is it memorable? Not so much. The 12 months in barrels hasn’t done a great deal to it which is a bit of a shame. There are some really good elements but it just seems to fall short of the line. It’s good without being great.