Saturday, September 12, 2009

Saint Arnold Divine Reserve 8

Yes the day is finally here, and after a long and arduous search I was able to secure myself some of this somewhat hard to find beer. What beer you ask? The latest Divine Reserve from Saint Arnold. This irregularly released ale has become cult like in its difficulty to get and the quickness in which it flies off the shelves. Reports of 100's of cases being gone in half an hour were not uncommon on Thursday the day of release.
But what kind of beer is this? From Saint Arnold's website:
This is a bold, malty, smoky Scotch Ale. It pours a deep amber brown. It was quite cloudy at the time of bottling, but will clarify as it ages. The nose is full of smoky toffee notes. The taste opens with sweet malt and spice, then the alcohol comes up with a light residual sweetness on the finish. A balanced smoky flavor is in this beer from start to finish, although it never is the dominant character. It was brewed with 2-Row, Biscuit, Dark Crystal, Amber, Peated, Caramunich and Wheat malt. It is hopped early with Hallertau Tradition and late with Hallertau Hersbrucker. We fermented DR8 with a traditional Scotch Ale yeast. It is unfiltered. Enjoy at 45°F or warmer. This beer was inspired by Phillip Kaufman’s winning entry in the 2009 Big Batch Brew Bash.
Now onto my thoughts.
The Beer: The beer weighs in at 9.6% and pours a cloudy hazy caramel color with a thick tan colored dense head of foam. The nose is incredibly smokey, peaty, caramel, toffee, and rich malts. The mouthfeel is chewy, full bodied. Peat, smoke, really smokey, caramel, toffee, biscuity, syrupy. Sweet, strong a bit of alcohol at the finish. I can't get over how smokey and peaty this beer is, it really reminds me of scotch in some of its flavor. My only complaint is that its a bit sweet right now, but that should smooth out as it ages, and this one should age amazingly well. This gets aB+ from me. The folks at BA like it as well.


Matt Bramanti said...

I might have to wash my glasses or something. I got very little head on my DR8.

Barleyvine said...

What type of glass did you use? At home out of the bottle I used my tulip shaped glass and got a good size head, last night out in a bar and on tap in a pint glass I got a smaller one about a quarter of an inch or so.