Russell Brewing Company Black Death – Porter at 6.5% ABV | 40 IBU

Russell Brewing Company Black Death Porter at 6.5% ABV | 40 IBU (C$6.99 at Quarry Park Calgary Co-Op, 650 ml, no bottle date or best before, acquired 17-Feb-2017, reviewed 29-Mar-2017)

Appearance: clear deep brown with some relief around the margins, one fat finger of fluffy light beige head diminishing gradually to a persistent dense cap, spotty lacing. (3/5) Aroma: mild roasted malts, dry cocoa, nuts. (6/10) Taste: moderate-high sweet, moderate bitter. (7/10) Palate: medium body, moderate carbonation, off-dry mild bitter finish. (3/5)

Not bad, just not very interesting. I was sort of surprised that there wasn’t more complexity on the nose or the tongue, but it’s pretty plain-Jane. There’s not a lot of hop character going on (and maybe it’s an old bottle, but who knows, because – you guessed it – THEY DON’T DATE THEIR DAMN BOTTLES) and the malt is pretty mild and mellow, almost to the point of boring. I guess I’d rather have this than a Guinness, for example, but there’s an awful lot more interesting beers out there. On the other hand, it’s not even a little bit peaty, so as Wee Heavies go, it’s pretty darned good. (The brewer calls it a “Wee Heavy Porter”. No, I’ve never heard of such a thing before, either. Far as I can tell, it’s a Porter.) (13/20)

6.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

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