86 / 100
Catching up on some of my remaining reviews from Sydney Craft Beer Week. One of the best events beer-wise was Thirsty Crow's tap takeover at Yulli's. This beer is one of the reasons why.
Pours a deep, black-brown hue, solidly, almost opaquely hazed with good weight behind it. Head is a creamy brown cap that stays smooth and rich. The only downside is that it doesn't leave lace, but that may just be because it's so boozy. Crazy insane, beautiful look to it.
Nose is great, working out a bunch of odd complexities from the dominantly dark, roasted basis. There's notes of coffee, or in particular Kahlua, along with smoke and pepper—perhaps the smoke is like smoked cheese. Whatever it is, it's phenomenal.
Smooth entry on the palate, masking the big rush of brusque burnt I was expecting. In fact, that rush doesn't eventuate: instead we get a remarkably mild and smooth dark chocolate and deep coffee. The prickle comes on the back, with a hint of smoky grilled capsicum and even a chilli-like fragrance. It's quite light, but this makes it amazingly smooth: the fact that it's light at all is an achievement in such a big beer.
Feel is extraordinary. Exceptionally smooth and clean, while maintaining its richness. Phenomenal.
Despite the complexity, the depth, the richness and above all the strength of this beer, it's ridiculously easy to drink. It's insane. Without a doubt, this is one of the very best Australian beers I've had. Superb stuff.