Review - White Birch Brewing Company's Barrel-Aged Tripel
"Aged in Pinot Noir and Merlot barrels. Each of the seven barrels we used are from the same vintage of wine. Unlike wine makers, we did not blend the contents from each barrel together. Rather choosing to let the subtle and unique differences from each barrel stand on their own. Each barrel is recognized on the label as batch PN1 through PN6, and M1. Meaning Pinot Noir barrel 1 through Pinot Noir barrel 6. and Merlot barrel 1. Pinot Noir barrels 1 through 3 have a nice soft fruit note. Barrels 4 through 6 have a softer wine note and more of a sharp oak flavor from the barrel. The Merlot barrel has a rich, sharp Merlot note, soften by our Tripel, with hints of oak." -- White Birch Brewing
Batch PN1 - Initially a soft sulfur and pepper like aroma escaped from the bottle. The malt presence was soft and straw like, very light. The hops are very eartly and musty. There is a wild, sour, yeasty presence. Pours a cloudy pale yellow hue with a minimal white head with no retention. Body clarity is hazy. No carbonation. Initial taste is dull grapefruit bitterness with some tartness mixed in. High levels of solvent creep in and remain through the finish with harsh abrasiveness. Light to medium in body, smooth, leaving our mouths a bit slick. Softly carbonation. The alcohol was slightly warming, but not overpowering. We appreciate the attempt, but our expectations were not met. We are intrigued by the barrel-aging process. The Pinot Noir notes were very interesting, but it was overpowered by the solvent presence.
Reviewed on December 12th, 2010.