Saturday, December 10, 2011

Dark Abbey (Harriet Brewing, Minneapolis, MN)

Picked up my first growler from Harriet Brewing tonight.  Very fun place that I will review when I do the tour, hopefully over Christmas break.  I'm on my second glass of this Belgian dubbel tonight, and the 7% ABV is apparent a bit in the nose and more in the feel.  First glass has a huge bubbly head with massive bursts of gas that collapse in a haphazard way.  The irregular head can be seen a bit in the picture.  For the second glass, the off white head formed much more nicely with tight bubbles and a much prettier presentation.

The nose is my favorite part of this beer.  Strong Belgian yeast combined with a superb dark fruit, cherry and fig on top of a heavy chocolate malt base.  Very pretty and intoxicating to breathe in.  Taste doesn't match up to the smell, for me anyway.  However, I like the growler better than my first draft of the beer at the Blue Nile in October.  I'm quite sure Al served it well, but I'm starting to think that I drank it a bit too fast the first time. Warmed up, the taste opens up significantly.  More yeast notes, dark fruits rest on the tongue more, and there's a light spiciness that lingers pleasantly.  On Harriet's website, they add the description of rum-raisin to what I've tasted, and the alcohol note is reminiscent of rum.  I had planned to order a different beer when I walked in the brewery, but the person in front of me literally ordered the last one, so ordering the Dark Abbey with the West Side was the only option left for the day.  As this has been a very pleasant night, thank god for happy accidents.  

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