Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Review: Saint Arnold Bishop's Barrel No. 1

A while back I mentioned this upcoming brew from Saint Arnold Brewing Company (facebook - twitter), their first barrel-aged release under the new Bishop's Barrel series.  It's only available in a handful of bars/retaurants around town, but last I checked they still had some in stock.  Check The Bulldog, The Cove, and The Chimes for sure if you want to grab one before they are gone!  

This first release is a Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout, and they knocked this one out of the park.  I was a little concerned at first that not being able to buy it retail and age the beer would leave it a little too "hot" and boozy, but I think Saint Arnold did a nice job of aging this one for us to let it mellow out before it hit the market.  The reportedly aged it for a whopping 10 months in Knob Creek barrels and the bourbon influence is astounding.  The vanilla and oak bourbon notes play right into the rich malt character of the stout base.  The beer isn't one to be chugged down, but rather sipped, and can easily be shared with a friend if you don't want to take down one by yourself. 

It's not a cheap beer, but this is definitely one that deserves to be tried if you are a fan of top notch craft beer offerings.  I'm thrilled that this beer found its way to Louisiana and that we were able to get a decent supply at the local bars.  Try it before it's too late, you won't regret it at all!  Well done Saint Arnold, well done indeed.