Anyone who has taken a look at my ‘What’s in the Fridge’ page will know that I have been aging beer pretty much since I began drinking craft beer. You also may have noticed that in previous posts I have commented on my reluctance to crack open bottles from this collection since the aged beers seem too special to drink on just any old occasion and really, if I have waited this long perhaps I should wait just a little bit longer (they might taste just a little bit better).
But lately I feel like the time has come to start enjoying some of my well-cared for stash and as such I am going to start a series of posts where I review aged beers and discuss the changes that have taken place, especially for those beers that I have tried when they were just young ‘uns.
Just a quick recap for those who have not read my post Maturing Beer, unlike mass market beer many styles of craft beer are brewed with the intention that they will be stored for some time before consumption. Strong beer with high ABV’s, Imperial Stouts, Barley Wines, Belgian Quads, Barrel-aged Porters, and basically any other robust style of beer can benefit from some time in the cellar. Breweries like Deschutes are even taking the initiative by posting best-after dates on their bottles. Basically the stronger your beer the longer you can age it. Also, if you are a really big beer nerd you can cellar different years of the same beer and hold a vertical tasting and actually taste the changes that are occurring.
Currently in my cellar (which is really my cupboard) I have:
Brooklyn Monster Ale 2007
Brooklyn Brewery Brooklyn Black Ops
Driftwood Old Cellar Dweller
Driftwood Old Barrel Dweller
Driftwood Singularity 2011, 2012
Dogfish Head Forte
Deschutes Black Butte
Deschutes Collage Conflux
Deschutes The Abyss 2009, 2012
Hair of the Dog Doggie Claws
Rogue Old Crustacean Barley Wine
VIB Hermannator Ice Bock
VIB Hermannator Ice Bock 25th Anniversary