Saturday, March 27, 2010

270. Dark Horse Double Crooked Tree

Another beer from Dark Horse, although this one isn’t a Stout—shocking, I know. Our Dark Horse list thus far includes Plead the 5th, Fore Smoked Stout, Too Cream Stout, One Oatmeal Stout and Crooked Tree IPA. We had this on tap @ the Trolley Stop; they tapped this last night, along with a 1/6th barrel of Burton Baton (I love you, Jason!). That, my friends, was also good drinking. So Elli and I rolled on down to the Trolley for our beer of the day after a tasty dinner at Taqueria Mixteca, which if you don’t know about, then you better learn quick—it’s the best Mexican in Dayton. I had pozole, which is a shredded pork and hominy soup, and Elli had a vegetarian burrito. That plus two horchatas (and of course the complimentary chips and salsa) clocked in at under $15. Delicious, and a bargain. But we’re here to talk about beer...

We got served Double Crooked Tree in a 10 oz. glass; the nose is caramel and malt with low levels of alcohol, accompanied by some piney and spicey hop aromas. As it warms, vanilla and oak begins to emerge, as well as some tannic hints from either the hops or the wood. Pouring a hazy rich copper, Double Crooked Tree has a thin white head that rigns the glass quickly. The beer begins with a rich, sweet caramel malt. There is light vanilla and oak mixed in along the way, created a nuanced, complex beginning. The middle is characterized by hop bitterness and spiciness; as it warms, the bitterness becomes much more pronounced. There is also some alcohol in the middle that runs on into the end, finishing with dry and biscuit malt flavors and lingering spicy bitterness. Double Crooked Tree has a creamy, rich malty mouthfeel; the carbonation is low, but is bright on the palate. There is a good amount of warmth from the alcohol in the middle and the end. A very drinkable beer overall; Double Crooked Tree has a nice balance between malt and hops, and the alcohol is well hidden, especially in a beer so young.

From the Dark Horse website: “Have you read the description for the regular Crooked Tree yet? Well this beer is almost the same just double the flavor and alcohol. We actually took the Crooked Tree recipe and doubled all of the ingredients except the water, just the way a DOUBLE should be made. Big hops balanced with tons of malt give this beer a huge body. Although this beer is as cool as ‘The Fonz’ when first purchased, it gets really mellow and smooth with some age. After a year or two stored in a cool dark place you’ll notice the heavy caramel and malt flavors are trying to sneak past the hops. This beer is hugely delicious so it will need your undivided attention (the chores can us).”

ABV: 12.0%


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