London Beer Lab Barrel Aged Darker Daze Imperial StoutDecember 1, 2016
London Beer Lab with Roaring Four Brewing Co.Barrel Aged Darker Daze Imperial Stout
London, England Style: Whiskey-Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout ABV: 8.5%
An imperial-stout collaboration aged in American whiskey barrels.
Moody black with a deep beige foam: an attractive beer with creamy chocolate, biscuit and spirit aromas. Bitter roasted grains lead in the mouth, with dark chocolate, oak and spirit notes fighting for attention, then coffee arrives in the dry finish that leaves a warming glow. There’s some tangy oak, too, but ashy coffee notes linger longest. Overall, this beer nicely combines the complexity of an imperial stout with the influence of a whiskey cask, but I find it lacks a little body. Such bold flavors, for me, need a fatter malt presence. Others, no doubt, will disagree.Jeff Evans is author of the Good Bottled Beer Guide, The Book of Beer Knowledge, Beer Lover's Britain and So You Want to Be a Beer Expert? More of his writing can be found at insidebeer.com.
The beer has been aged for several months in American whiskey, scotch and cognac casks: My sample is American whiskey. The 750-mL bottle pours a dense collar of foam, topping black beer, followed by a massive hit of oak, smoke and vanilla from the wood. A luscious bourbon flavor caresses the palate with burnt fruit and peppery hops. The finish is long, with the hops tackling the inherent vanilla sweetness of the whiskey and an additional layer of vanilla and burnt fruit. Complex and rewarding.
Roger Protz is the author of 300 Beers to Try Before You Die and 300 More Beers to Try Before You Die. Respected beer authority and editor of the CAMRA Good Beer Guide and protzonbeer.co.uk.
Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this review incorrectly noted that this was not a collaboration beer between London Beer Lab and Roaring Four Brewing Co.