Adroit Theory Brewing – B/A/Y/S – Imperial Stout

Posted: April 13, 2013 in Uncategorized

There’s a new brewery in town. Brand spanking new, not even on the market new. Adroit Theory is a nano brewery based in Purcellville, Virginia. Their aim is to have beers to market in 2013. Fortunately I was lucky enough to be selected as a taste tester for their early batches.
I arrived home from work in late March to find my taster box waiting for me. It contained the beer, a couple of pretty sweet stickers, and the official taste tester envelope with details on the beer and the feedback forms and such. It looked something like this.

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And this…
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Some info about the beer itself. I received the B/A/Y/S (Black as your soul) batch 004. Here is what the guys over at Adroit Theory say about their brew.

Ghost 002 – Is a remake of Ghost 001, our first batch of B/A/Y/S. we started with a relatively straight forward stout recipe that we quickly scaled up to Imperial status. The final grain bill was 52 pounds on a 1/2 barrel system!

We also wanted to add a more pronounced hop profile than typically found in such a beer. We selected two of my favorites: Simcoe and Amarillo. While the final product did not have a pronounced citrusy hop profile, the bitterness in the flavor profile is quite nice.

To balance the richness of the brew, we added hazelnuts for a nutty character. We then added cherries to boost the residual sweet flavor. Both are subtle, but welcome additions.

Finally, to give the beer a truly unique experience, we aged the beer for 3 weeks on reclaimed chestnut staves. Chestnut is an extremely rare specie of wood, and has a pleasing aroma when cut. We thought, what better way to enhance the beer.

Ghost 003 – Is Ghost 002 aged in a bourbon barrel from Woodinville Whiskey

Ghost 004 – Is Ghost 002 aged in a rye barrel from Finger Lakes Distilling.

And now on to the beer itself.

Aroma: Big boozy bourbon nose with some follow on bitterness from the roast barley. I also picked up some coffee and a mellow, sweet chocolate hint on the back end

Appearance: Pitch black, pours thick and heavy. Carbonation is quite low, which causes just a hint of a dark tan head that dissipates quickly to leave a thin sticky line round the glass

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Flavor: Big big chocolate flavors up front, much more than the aroma would indicate. This gives way to a nice counterbalanced roasty bitterness. I hadn’t picked up on the cherries before now, but there is definitely hints of dark fruits coming through. There is a little booziness from the bourbon as you would expect, but there is little alcohol burn from this beer

Mouthfeel: Again, as with the appearance, this is a thick heavy beer. Even with a fairly low carbonation, this is has a nice creamy mouthfeel. This may sound odd, and I mean this in a good way, but there is almost a grainy chocolate feel at parts. I wonder if that could be attributed to the chestnut staves. I like it. Nice and sticky on the way down to remind you that you are drinking a 9% beer

Overall Impression: Very impressed with the initial offering from Adroit. I’d love to have one to sit in an aging cabinet for a year, or one of the other variations to do a side by side comparison. I definitely look forward to trying more from their line when available. Based on this beer I see no reason to think they won’t be around for a long time to come. I for one welcome our new Purcelville overlords!!

I certainly support local, but with beer, local or not it has to be good. And this certainly fits the bill.

Cheers (and I’ll leave you with some more details)

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Homework done…

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