Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Mikkeller In May
21. Mikkeller Beer Geek Brunch Weasel Cognac Edition 10.9%

Hang on a minute, I hear you say, this is a bit of a cop-out, he's reviewing the same beer as yesterday, and in a sense you'd be right. (I'll be reviewing the same beer again tomorrow too). It is the same beer, but this time it's aged in Cognac barrels.

I thought it would be interesting to review this immediately after yesterdays 'standard' (like it could really ever be called standard) Beer Geek Brunch Weasel to compare and contrast.

I'm usually not one for 'brewery blurb', but on this occasion because I think they make it beautifully clear I'll let Mikkeller tell you about their beer:
'The recipe for this beer is as simple as a childs finger painting: you take one of the world's highest rated beers - that's the one called Brunch - and then you let it splash about in a totally fresh cognac barrel for three months. After that it's just a question of, out of the barrel, into a bottle and off you go.'
Nice and straight forward. time to drink it.

The first thing that you may notice is that the bottle is smaller than yesterdays, half the size actually, 25cl as opposed to it's 50cl brother. It pours in the same silky smooth way and it looks the same captivating and enveloping rich deep brown, but the head is lighter, less voluminous and fades quicker as a consequence. The aroma is rich deep dark chocolate with a very pronounced vanilla overlay, slightly spicy and creamy, with a touch of white chocolate too. Initially smooth as it flows over the tip of the tongue then a great bit surge of dryness is sucked up by a boozy milk chocolate brandy explosion at the back of the mouth. The flavour is quite intense, clearing the nasal passages and continues into the silky sweet milk chocolate finish with lovely alcoholic edge in there too.
The cognac barrel aging has altered the character of the beer, accentuating and intensifying the alcoholic chocolate element, but overpowering and obliterating any trace of the hoppy tropical fruit caramel. Yes, it's the same wonderful beer, but it's also wonderfully different too.

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