Saturday, October 5, 2013

Southern Tier Warlock (7/10)

Southern Tier’s Pumking is one of my favorite pumpkin beers.  I like the strong spice element and the richness of it.  Warlock is Southern Tier’s Imperial Stout brewed with pumpkins.

It pours a deep black.  At the edges, in a bright enough light, it looks clear (rather than cloudy).  The head is a beige color and a bit more than finger-thick.  It dissipates reasonably slowly.
The aroma is a cross between chocolate, pumpkin pie, and dark malt. 

The flavor begins a bit bitter and smoky.  This gives way to dark roasted malt, pumpkin, and spice.
The finish is definitely hoppy and bitter with some roasted grain bitterness.  Aftertaste is moderately bitter.

At first, I couldn’t decide if I liked this or not.  The pumpkin adds a “funky” element to the stout that at first doesn’t seem to mesh, but the more I drank it the more I seemed to overlook that and appreciate the smoky, spicy, malty elements of it.  Ultimately, I think it’s just a bit more bitter than I care for.  Despite that, I’m still rating it a solid 7/10.  It’s a beer I’d be happy drinking again, but not one I’m likely to seek out.

Beer Advocate rates it 90/100 or outstanding.  Ratebeer gives it the even higher 96/100.  I do like it better than some stouts, but less than other pumpkin beers.  (By the way, if you get a chance to tray RAM Brewery’s pumpkin beer, definitely do it.  One of the very best I’ve ever had.)

IBU:  Unknown, estimate high 20’s or low 30’s
ABV: 8.6%
My Rating: 7/10

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