Dandy Brewing Company Smoke Boss – Rauchbier at 5.5% ABV

Dandy Brewing Company Smoke Boss Rauchbier at 5.5% ABV (C$8.29 at Willow Park Wine & Spirits, 650 ml, no bottle date or best before)

Appearance: clear to slightly hazy and particulate-laden brown with two fingers of medium tan head, good retention and moderate lacing. (3/5) Aroma: smoke, vanilla, caramel, hint of bacon. (6/10) Taste: mild sweet, mild bitter, mild smoke. (6/10) Palate: medium body tending a little to the watery, moderate carbonation, short mildly smoky finish. (4/5)

Not bad at all. The smoke is balanced and doesn’t overwhelm the caramel maltiness or the vanilla-like flavour (that I’m assuming is the bourbon-tonka infusion, though I was previously unfamiliar with the tonka bean). Although I’ve noted a slightly watery body, it isn’t a significant drawback since it keeps this thing from becoming too heavy – bear in mind it is a lager, after all, and not a porter or a stout, despite its appearance. I have marked it down slightly for the haze, though: I know it’s bottle-conditioned, and I’ve made allowances for that, but the style is supposed to be “very clear.” Overall, a remarkably even-handed and largely traditional treatment of a challenging style by a young brewery. (13/20)

6.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

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