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Apex Predator Brewing (Bench Creek Brewing) 4th Anniversary Flowerdale – Braggot at 9.5% ABV | 35 IBU

Apex Predator Brewing (Bench Creek Brewing) 4th Anniversary Flowerdale – Braggot at 9.5% ABV | 35 IBU (C$4.72 at Collective, 473 ml, packaged on 24-Feb-2020, acquired 22-May-2020, reviewed 30-May-2020)

Appearance: clear medium amber with one fat finger of rocky beige head, excellent retention and heavy soapy lacing. (5/5) Aroma: complex, honey, spicy rye, bready malt, floral, dark fruits. (8/10) Taste: moderate-high sweet, moderate-high bitter, moderate spice. (7/10) Palate: medium-full smooth body, moderate-soft carbonation, sticky building bitter finish. (4/5)

The brewer says this “is a complex pint that is well-suited to cellar aging.” Well, maybe – but I’ll tell ya: despite the fact I’ve come a long way in revising my attitude towards cans, I’ll have to see some pretty solid research evidence before I’d even consider cellaring one. As for the beer itself, well, I haven’t had many Braggots (or Meads, for that matter), but this is very good. It’s honey, yes, but dark and sensual rather than bright and sweet. Spicy rye intermingles with honey and bready malt, finishing with floral and dark fruit elements. A complex sipper, but nowhere near the beast one would expect given the near-double-digit ABV. Definitely not a patio beer, but I was OK bouncing back and forth between sipping this and tending the BBQ… I can see it not being everybody’s cup of tea, but I liked it: it’s different, and that goes a long way with me. (16/20)

8/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

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