Sunday, February 17, 2013

Shmaltz Brewing Company - Human Blockhead

Nailed it.

My commute home last night was a freaking nightmare. The train broke down (or something) and the operator dumped all of us passengers out in the zoo tunnel. If you're from Portland, you know that the tunnel station at Washington Park is probably just about the worst MAX stop to get stranded in after the sun goes down. The zoo is closed and there is nothing around. Just a big, empty parking lot. After that, my evening degenerated into something out of John Candy movie. I'll spare you the gory details and jump right to the happy ending--me sitting on a barstool at Bailey's Taproom.

Bailey's Taproom is one of my favorite beer bars in Stumptown.   They always have 20 rotating taps of the most sought after craft beers in Oregon. They'll let you taste anything they're pouring and it's virtually guaranteed that you'll find something you'll like--if you like beer.

I treated myself to several delicious cold beverages. The most interesting was Shmaltz Brewing's Human Blockhead. It's a bourbon barrel aged Imperial Doppelbock, and with a 10.8% ABV, it doesn't mess around. The stuff will knock your block clean off.

It was presented on my beer mat a dark brown, copper color with a thick, off-white head. The head dissipated slowly and left a good amount of lacing in the tiny chalice from which I sipped. Powerful aroma from this one. Brown sugar, dark fruit and toffee. Lots of booze hits the nose, which is understandable. Zoinks!

Taste is also big and boozy. Not as sweet as I anticipated. Tastes of malt, bread and bourbon. Yeah, kind of like a very flavorful bread pudding--that your crazy uncle spiked with a whole bottle of liquor. I imagine that three or four of these would put most folks on the floor or at least set them to wobbling on the stool.

I really like this one. It's certainly not the kind of beer everyone would like, but for what it is, it's pretty much perfect. I'm giving Human Blockhead a Big Dumb Galoot rating of 4 crushed cans out of 4.

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