Bah Humbug!

I know there’s alot of reviews lately. Especially for a guy who didn’t want his blog to be about reviews right? To be honest I’m having alot of work and family issues at the same time and finding a hard time balancing. This means ending the night with a new beer has become a high point in my life. Hence no research, and more reviews. Up now is Old Humbug from Southern Oregon Brewing.

Aroma

Nose consists of some coffee, dark malts, but still has a sweet smell. Sniffers down tonight so it’s hard to get subtle notes.

Appearance

Pours like a flat bottle of rootbeer. Looks about the same too. Rootbeer might be a little thicker and darker on the pour. Not looking up for a big winter beer. No head retention.

Taste

Wow, there’s alot more going on then I expected. Sweet toffee like flavor followed with lot’s of heat. Definite Caramel flavor,some licorice and molasses like flavors, but not distinctly either. A great spicy note that plays well with the heat. Coffee like bitterness on the finish. Sweetness holds out till the very end, but is subtle and not overpowering.

Overall

Not a bad beer, and for tonight it hit the spot. I’m sad this wasn’t one of the bottles opened at Saturdays tasting as it would have preformed well. I’d give it an A for no other particular reason then this beer ended up being just what I wanted tonight. not even the ’08 Old Rasputin or the W ’10 could satisfy my palate today. The complexity and variety of flavors combined with the heat just hit the spot. Really though this beer should score a little lower simply for appearance. I’d say it should be marked down for aroma as well, but my sniffer isn’t up to snuff. So reality is a B – B+ beer that is enjoyable. The heavens won’t open up and you won’t feel the hand of God when you drink it, but if you drink it at the right moment it’ll leave an impression.

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3 Responses to “Bah Humbug!”

  1. Capital Taps says:

    Did you have Keelhauler when it came out? I liked its take on the Scotch Ale better than this one – which had for me entirely too much toffee & sweet.

  2. Jared says:

    I don’t think the two can, or should, compare. Old Humbug is a winter warmer with alot going on. As it warms it gets extremely nutty. Keelhauler though is a scottish ale and not my favorite. A sweeter toffee taste is common in winter warmers and on style. A scotish ale on the other hand should be less sweet, and be balanced by a carmalized flavor.

    While on scotish ales…. Have you tried Smoking Bagpipes?? It’s on tap at Venti’s right now. The smoke is a bit intense and overwhelming at first, but after your palate learns to move beyond it it’s not a bad scotish ale.

  3. Capital Taps says:

    What about McEwan’s? Beeradvocate, for example, calls it a “scotch ale / wee heavy,” and at 8% abv, it seems to me it’s entirely comparable to Old Humbug. More than this, it has the same toffee and sweet. Moylan’s Kilt Lifter and Rush River Winter Warmer invoke both categories as well.

    While I respect that Keelhauler wasn’t to your taste, I must disagree that scotch ales and winter warmers are so easily distinguished!

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