Roll Out the Barrels...To the Incinerator

Enough, I've had it. I make this pledge to you, dear reader, that I'm through with barrel aged beers. I'm tired of it, they all kind of run together. Some are awful and others are okay, but they all taste pretty similar. I just don't get it.

I say all this because I drank the Great Divide 16th Anniversary Wood Aged Double IPA. I make it no secret that I love me some Great Divide. I even bought a sixer of Great Divide Titan IPA this morning. I thought maybe they could make a great barrel aged beer. They did make a good beer, I can't deny it. The wood definitely gave the double IPA a vanilla-y oak flavor rounding off the malt sweetness and softening the hops. But, in a taste test with some of my favorite double IPA's, it would be my least favorite. Mind you, it's good. At no point did I consider dumping it, I dare say I enjoyed it a little bit. But, the wood aging does nothing for me. It doesn't add flavors I want in a beer and it's ovedone.

Your mileage may vary on these oak aged behemoths. I've been rather selective in the ones I try for the past couple of months. Odell Saboteur was good, Boulevard Rye on Rye was good, GD 16th Anniversary DIPA was good. But I never bought a second one and I don't think I will. I can't think of any barrel aged beers I've bought more than one of and I'm not going through my archives to find one. I'm through with the whole thing now. I've said it before and I'll say it again, if I want a bourbon flavor, I'm going to have a bourbon, not a beer.

I thought the Rogue John John Juniper would be different. It was aged in gin barrels. It was definitely different than the bourbon barrel aging, but, I much prefer the regular Rogue Juniper Ale. Maybe I'm wrong, though they're my taste buds, I just don't get the added expense and flavor of the barrel aging. Maybe it's just that every brewery is coming out with these barrel aged behemoths. I don't know. It's just something I'm tired of. I know, I know, you've had this great barrel aged beer that would change my mind, you can tell me all about it. But, I had this discussion with the guy at Tipsy's when I bought the Great Divide. He said that the wood flavor was barely present and complemented the flavors of the DIPA. Nope, the wood was there, I tasted it and it was my takeaway flavor. It did complement the flavors, but it was still the main flavor. I wish I could have had it before it got put in the barrels. I would have enjoyed it more.

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