Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Meg and I were given a 4 four pack of Samichlaus as a wedding gift in 2007 (the beer was actually bottled in 2006). If you are not familiar with Samichlaus here is the description from their website:
“Samichlaus” beer is brewed once a year, in each case on December 6th, and stored and matured afterwards for over 10 months before it is bottled. "Samichlaus” beer can mature for many years in the bottle; older vintages obtain a complexity and receive their creamy warm aftertaste. This beer can be served with heavy meals and desserts, particularly with chocolate - or as digestive and meditations drink. According to the Guinness Book of Records, it is the strongest lager beer in the world with 14 % alcohol and 32° original extract content. It is brewed exclusively of natural raw ingredients after the purity requirement of 1516.
Meg and I have enjoyed one of these fine brews each year since we were married in 2007. We have one left for 2010.
I'll have to say that this beer has changed quite a bit since we first tried it in 2007. During our first tasting in 2007, Meg and I were both overwhelmed with the over the top alcohol hotness of it. It also had a lot of bourbon overtones.
As expected this beer has really mellowed out and is much easier to appreciate the complexities. Here goes:
An aggressive pour yields almost no head whatsoever (that's what she said), but it has a nice deep orange color. It has a nice bready, and caramel aroma. As you might expect, this beer is quite sweet and malty. Raisins, figs, brown sugar and maple syrup come out with a little yeast flavor on the back end. Very little in the way of hop flavor. The mouthfeel is smooth and syrupy. This is definitely a dessert beer to split with a friend. If you drank more than one of these, it would put you down big time (or take you down to Chinatown!).
If I must place a rating on this one, I'd give it a straight B. This one is kind of hard to rate it, because there really isn't anything that comes to mind to compare it against, so it definitely gets a uniqueness street cred bump. But its not the kind of beer that you are going to run out and buy whole bunch of. Definitely a very cool wedding gift for fellow beer geeks.