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Aging Beer

Just to clear the air, I’m not talking about your Grandpa’s beer, or walkers and canes … I’m talking about aging beer like you would age a fine wine. To bring out the complex flavors, subtle notes, and tame the wildness of a fresh red wine. And the same things that make a good aging wine (sweet, strong reds) make for a great aging beer. The stout I brewed is strong, malty, and full of complex flavors. More flavor that some like in fact …. so when I was down to a single 6 pack I decided to stash it out of site withe with Wild Red wine aging in our pantry.

Now, it’s been three months since I stashed it away and I’m pulling the first out for a try. I hope to keep them in there and pull one out over the next year and a half as an experiment to see what happens. Will is age well? Will it continue to improve or reach a plateu? Will it start to go bad eventually? (Skunky stout sounds really bad)

So, what is the result after three months?

Good.

When I first bottled this stout, the oak flavors came through the maltyness nicely. But, once it had carbonated it was overpowered by the heavy stout. With age, that all seems to be evening out. At first sip there is a rush of malty oak flavor, followed by a subtle bitterness in the back of the mouth. The oak comes back as a lingering flavor, slowly fading until the next sip.

When it was fresh, one stout was all I could take because the malt flavors seemed to linger and build over the course of the glass. Now, they seem to have mellowed a bit to the point where it’s finishing more cleanly and I could keep going … especially it was wasn’t so tired.

Looking forward to my next stout in another three months … *sigh*

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