By Iron Chef Leftovers
I while back, January to be exact, I posted about my excitement about the Belgian Beer Festival and American Brewing’s entry, Stupid Sexy Flanders. In the perfect example of why I needed to increase the frequency of my beer posts, I am finally getting around to reviewing the beer – only 6 months after I had it.
Here is what we know of the beer from the festival guide:
A Brown Ale fermented with our Sour Yeast on locally grown raspberries and aged to perfection in red wine barrels. 8% ABV
I am usually hesitant about drinking barrel aged beers because too often they taste like the barrel they are aged in and nothing else. If I wanted whiskey, I would drink whiskey. If you are going to age a beer in a whiskey barrel, I better taste the beer with notes of whiskey. So with a slight trepidation, I told my pourer “Stupid Sexy Flanders, Please.”
The beer pours dark brown, almost black in color. There are tons of wood and roast malt on the nose with hints of fruit hiding in between. The beer starts out surprisingly subtle – tangy, but not lip puckeringly so, followed by a hint of wood before a long dried fruit finish. I was expecting this beer to be over the top sour and so woody that it would be like chewing on a log, (considering American’s festival beers tend to be over the top, it is not a bad assumption) but, to my surprise, the sour was nicely restrained and it balances the wood extremely well; I knew this was a wood-aged beer, but not so much so that it was all I tasted. Don’t get me wrong, this beer was sour and, if you don’t love sour beers, this is definitely not the one for you, but it was pleasant and acted as a wonderful counterbalance to the wood. My only complaint about this beer, and it is a personal preference rather than a flaw, is that I would love this beer to have a little more fruit flavor to bring it more to the front rather than being a supporting cast member at the end.
All in all this was a great beer and I would never hesitate to drink this one when I am in the mood for something sour.
American Brewing’s Stupid Sexy Flanders comes in for a landing at a spectacular 5 Brussel-Zaventem out of 5. What? You expected a Simpsons joke here, didn’t you neighborino?