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Beer Review #275 Oak Horizontal

03-01-01 I make no secret of my love for Victory Brewing Company. There are a number of outstanding breweries around the Philadelphia area, but I think that I would be most upset if Victory were to close down. Luckily, that doesn’t look to be in the cards as they are adding a second brewery. Oak Horizontal is another beer in their barrel aging series (not an official name). The bottle says a “malt beverage aged in bourbon barrels.” And this bad boy rocks in at 10.5%. Old Horizontal is Victory’s barleywine and this is a barrel aged version of it.

Oak Horizontal (I love the word play) pours a nice caramel brown color. It has an off-white head and is slightly hazy. The nose has a nice bourbon note, though not overpowering, along with some nice bits of vanilla. The maltiness of this beer is apparent in the nose but there are no hops to speak of. I’m not sure if they are washed out by the bourbon or if the additional aging knocked them out of the aroma spectrum.

This beer begins surprisingly with a light malt flavor. I was expecting big bold malt, but not so. There are bits of caramel and toffee mixed in but not to the same extent as the non-barrel aged version of this beer. The light malt folds into a bourbon malt flavor. The bourbon is very smooth and enjoyable. An aged hops flavor can be tasted on the back-end with some slight spiciness.

Victory produced a wonderfully smooth barrel aged beer with Oak Horizontal. It is very drinkable and bourbon and barleywine go perfectly together. This is a perfect cigar beer and a sipper. I drank this over the course of two hours and enjoyed every bit of it. The $15 price tag was a bit high, but it did live up to my expectations. (more…)

Craft Beer Cigars?

I found this interesting product by way of Monday Night Brewery, so I need to give credit where credit is due, but this is weird. I used to really enjoy a good cigar, and I still will have one now and then but a craft beer cigar sounds a bit odd. The cigar’s site says “The world’s first cigar aromatically seasoned with 100% Centennial Hops. Pair it with your favorite IPA for an amazing experience.”

I don’t know if you have ever had a cigar and a beer, but from my experience they do not go very well together. The last time I had one was the night before I got married almost two years ago. A few of my friends and I decided to class up our cheap hotel and drink beer and smoke cigars in the parking lot. Yeah we were that classy. Anyway, I don’t think a single one of us finished our beers or our cigars. The combo just doesn’t work for me. Hopz is a fun name I guess but I don’t think I will be trying this experiment.