So much about this beer reminds me of my Grandfather, from the bourbon & coke he faithfully made with dinner, to the big green hat & flannel that I’ll forever associate with him. Both sides of my family are from Georgia, and I cannot overstate how much he was the essence of a Southern man (and what a wonderful Southern woman he raised aka my mother). He was born and raised in the same county, bred and used Walkers & Beagles for hunting, constantly kept his faith next to his heart, worked hard, and thought his wife was the most beautiful woman in the world. He also made the best hushpuppies & fried fish you would ever have. Oh boy were those irresistible.
Though I can’t pinpoint a specific time I remember him wearing one of the hats that we now have at home, it is one of those images that will always stay in my mind. Wearing red flannel, jeans, a wide green hat, and his glasses while loading up the canoe in his green Ford Ranger. Singing wayyy out of tune on our way to the creek. My brother and I had several great years of learning how to fish from him, a little bit about guns, a few life lessons sprinkled in – mainly observations on how to be a good man and great grandfather. I wish I had been there more, asked more questions, but the hope that my brother and I can one day go fishing in the same hats and enjoy the same serenity he found on the river is amazing. But hey, back to the beer…
All in all…This is absolutely oozing with bourbon smell & taste. The flavor is so beautifully blended that it is almost convincing me that this is the only form of bourbon whiskey I’ll ever need. Almost. Almost. It has a delightful oak flavor to me, but it doesn’t venture too far over to the charred or smokey side, and in my opinion has a small hint of oily coconut. That may be just me, as some others who had this the other night remarked on the vanilla flavors. Surprisingly it also feels very light, as opposed to having an overbearing nature that bourbon barrel beers can have.
I’m curious, though, about the barrels they used for this beer. Bourbon barrel aged beers are very prevalent these days, and it would be really interesting to hear more about what specific barrels are used in the aging process. Also, getting more information about their process would be fascinating. Was there a certain flavor in the bourbon whiskey that they liked and inspired them to select these certain barrels? Or were these bought from Scotch whisky distillers? And how interesting would it be to see what a Scotch whisky barrel aged beer is like? Did they rinse/wash the barrels out before putting the beer inside? What did that do for the flavor? There’s so much to ask!
Recommend to a friend? If you are any type of whiskey lover, you must try this.
How much snow are you willing to scrape off your car for this? Any beer that makes me throw my hands up in the air and and exclaim how happy it makes me deserves a (5) Dig through a Minnesota blizzard
Safe for lightweights? Alas this is not safe for lightweights at 10.2% ABV
Plus one? I wish I could, but that wouldn’t really be wise.
And from Founders: “Expect lovely, warm smells of single malt scotch, oaky bourbon barrels, smoke, sweet caramel and roasted malts, a bit of earthy spice, and a scintilla of dark fruit. It’s a kick-back sipper made to excite the palate.”