79 / 100
I purchased this on my last trip to the US, and carried it back to Australia in my luggage to share with @LaitueGonflable and @tobeerornottobe, but it smashed in transit. As a result, it is a beer I've been looking forward to trying.
Pours a heavy and thick deep amber-gold colour, with a fine bubbled film of yellowish-white head. It is especially golden on the pour, where it looked a little as though it was artificially coloured. Some lacing, but minimal. Body is very thick, however, with some phenomenally still bubbling as the glass is tilted. It's as though the bubbles can't muster the energy to push their way to the surface. Very good look indeed.
Nose is incredibly sweet, with big honey and toffeed sugar characters, soaked raisins, even a whiff of port. Slight grainy and light bread yeast character coming through as well. Very sweet and rich. I'd enjoy seeing a few more genuine wheat characters coming through, but it's pretty good as it stands, a very robust, strong and sweet nose.
Very smooth on the palate, with big sweetness coming through languidly, giving off golden syrup characters, molasses and hint of fine port, welling with a faintly smoky booziness through to the end. There is indeed a hint of the alcohol (how could there not be, at 9.2%?) but it integrated really nicely with the rich and sweet characters throughout. Feel is excellent: a silky but chewy experience which accentuates the depth on the palate.
A very good wheatwine, and one which accentuates the heavy and sweet characters of a high-gravity brew well. It does feel as though it's separating itself from a barleywine, through a slightly lighter flavour profile, and a lighter bitterness, and while there's minimal wheat on the palate, it still feels as though it's a true example of the style.
Heavy and sweet, but very delectable. Recommended.