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Leapbeer Reviews – A Pair of Smoked Beers

Perhaps you’re asking yourself, what is a smoked beer? If you recall from my review of the Rogue Brewing Voodoo Doughnut Maple Bacon Ale I noted there was smokiness in the brew. But there’s actually a whole style of beers that are referred to as Smoked Beers or Rauchbiers.  When they dry the malted barley they do it over an open flame, imparting a distinct aroma of smoke and an almost peaty flavour. I chose to bring 2 different beers featuring smoked malts, to show 2 sides of this beer style.

First up is Dark Snout Bacon Oatmeal Stout. This is a Bourbon barrel aged oatmeal stout infused with bacon. It pours to jet black. The head starts off tan, but dissipates quickly. It really smells like smoke, with hints of bacon and bourbon infused sweetness. Not overpoweringly sweet though, just a touch. It tastes good, there’s all the stout character to it with malts and bitter. There is a lot of lingering smoke and bacon flavour at the tale end of the tasting. The Oatmeal stout is a  lot milder of a canvas for the bacon and smoke. This beer is definitely milder than I was expecting. Smoked beers to me are seeming like an acquired taste. While better than the voodoo doughnut, it isn’t as good as I hoped.

Leapbeer #258 Dark Snout Bacon Oatmeal Stout by R & B Brewing Company

Brewery: R & B Brewing Company of Vancouver BC
Released: Unknown
Size/ABV: 650ml Bottle/5.4% ABV
Availability: Limited
Purchased @: Cascadia Liquor Store, Victoria
Webpage:
http://www.r-and-b.com/?p=280
Other Reviews: Beeradvocate & Rate Beer

Next I moved on to a different beer, The Big Smoke smoked porter by 8 wired brewing. I was hoping that with my track record of smoked beers being a bit lackluster that 8 wired would save me from the doldrums. I would not be disappointed. Upon opening this beer it frothed quite a bit. I didn’t shake the bottle at all, but it was very heady. My first pour yielded about 2/3 head in the glass. The smell of the smokiness is faint for me, but I guessed that the head was trapping in the majority of the aroma of this beer. The mocha head showed very little sign of dissipating, and was constructed of lots of large bubbles. This beer has lots of rich licorice scents to it, and it is jet black. No light gets through this bad boy. It tastes remarkable, very peaty and smokey in the front, and really smooth in the back. Again I’m won over by 8 wired’s craftsmanship. This is a balanced and delicious beer. I would suggest this as a starting point for smoked beers, if you were curious to try them. It reminds me of a really good scotch, a nice peaty notes  followed with smooth rich flavours. A tinge of bitterness, good head retention. Well done 8 Wired.

Leapbeer #259 is Big Smoke Smoked Porter by 8 Wired Brewing

Brewery: 8 Wired Brewing of Marlborough New Zealand
Released: Unknown
Size/ABV: 500ml Bottle/6.2% ABV
Availability: Limited
Purchased @: Cascadia Liquor Store, Victoria
Webpage:
http://8wired.co.nz/our-brews/the-big-smoke-smoked-porter
Other Reviews: Beeradvocate & Rate Beer

For more information about smoked beers check out the wikipedia page about them.

Thanks for reading

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3 thoughts on “Leapbeer Reviews – A Pair of Smoked Beers

  1. Very interesting. I had hoped to find a bottle of the R&B but never did and I still have not seen the 8 Wired one. I will have to head to Legacy Liquor and try to find it. Good read as always

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