Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Kate the Great, Tasting Session

Last year I was reading on Homebrew Talk about a beer called Kate the Great.  This beer will never be sold here in San Diego as it is a limited release, but after reading the reviews online and the hype surrounding the recipe.  I knew it would be a great beer for my Reserve Series.  The recipe is complex with the addition of Oak Cubes, Bourbon and a long fermentation time I knew it would be close to a year before I could give it a proper tasting. 


Rich coffee and chocolate, plum, Some maple or Brown Sugar notes. Intense roasted aroma with some dark dried fruity esters.  Layered malt, fruit and alcohol complexity.  Very smooth with hints of Bourbon.


Silky, deep tan head but somewhat small.  Jet black in color.  Opaque, like looking into the midnight sky. 


Deep complexity, nice Bourbon flavor. Tons of malt, no hot alcohol flavors. Not melded at all. Medium-low bitterness. Medium hop flavor but not dominating—citrus, pine.  Small amounts of Vanilla oak.  Warm finish with lingering bitterness and intense Brown sugar flavors.  Dark dried fruit—black currant, plum, raisin, maple with a clean finish, some sweetness but finishing dry.  Sitting on the counter this beer opened up as it got warmer.


Low carbonation. Dark roast. Warm alcohol fills your mouth. Full body, somewhat on the thicker side.

Overall Impression:

Very impressed with the overall beer.  With age it could only get better. It has a ton of flavor that should contribute to a very complex beer among friends. At about 8 months old today the flavors are wonderfully blended.

Brewing Timeline:

If you are looking to brew something like this patience is the key.  This was my first beer using Oak.  I ended up using American Med Toast Oak Cubes.  I found this page on Homebrew Talk extremely valuable for oaking information.  With my KTG recipe I noticed at month 2 on the cubes the oak flavor spiked.  It was almost undrinkable.  Then every couple weeks I would grab a sample and it would get better and better.

If you want to see the recipe for Kate the Great, look HERE.

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