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Currently On Tap

North Coast Old Stock Ale 2009 Cellar Reserve

Normally I start out my beer reviews with a story leading into the beer, but I’m just not in the mood tonight.  I’m sure many of you are relieved about this as it saves you from having to wade through a paragraph or two of my ramblings before getting to the beer at hand.

North Coast Brewing Old Stock Ale 2009 Cellar Reserve

North Coast Brewing Old Stock Ale 2009 Cellar Reserve

Tonight I’m sipping on a bottle of North Coast Brewing’s Old Stock Ale 2009 Cellar Reserve.  These are the same folks who brought us Old Rasputin and Brother Thelonius, as well as the original Old Stock Ale, all excellent beers in their own right.  When I spotted this bottle on the shelf at my favorite bottle shop I was intrigued.  First, the bottle looks really cool (again, I’m a sucker for a gimmick) and with a $20 price tag (yes, you read that right), I had to see what it was all about.  I had every intention of sitting on this bottle for a while and opening it when it was a bit cooler outside, but tonight seemed as good of a night as any to pop the cork.

What we have here is Old Stock Ale, aged for 18 months in bourbon barrels.  If you’re the type to enjoy an oak-aged beer, you should be all over this.  As you raise the glass to your lips, your nose will fire off the first hint of what’s to come as the aromas of bourbon, vanilla and oak waft up from the beer, along with a nice tingle from the alcohol.  The first sip pretty much overwhelms your senses…bourbon, vanilla, toffee, oak, sweetness, maltiness.  It is really something that you have to stop and think about to try to sort out all the different flavors that are layered upon one another.  The finish is about as one would expect…sweetness, bourbon, vanilla and a pleasant warming sensation.

Keep in mind that this is not your average summer evening lawnmower beer.  It’s heavy and sweet almost to the point of being cloying and the 13% ABV wallop pretty much ensures that this in the “one and done” class.  It would definitely be a beer, had I to do it over again, I would have waited for a cold winter day to enjoy…and if I can find another bottle of it, I plan on doing just that.  But don’t get me wrong, it’s still an excellent beer, but don’t go into it thinking that it’s going to be a refreshing, thirst quenching brew.

2 comments to North Coast Old Stock Ale 2009 Cellar Reserve

  • Clark

    Great Beer! The “stock” Old Stock is almost as good but a fraction of the price.

  • Jenn

    @ Clark: are you referring to this? “North Coast Old Stock Ale 2011” /// I was @ BevMo & came across the $21 bottle of ’09 Cellar Reserve & decided to buy/see why it was priced so friggen high… glad I did… totally loved it & I’m not usually a beer drinker. The ’09 Cellar Reserve is a bit high for my DNI (daily nightcap intake)… your comment caught my interest and I want to give your suggestion a try. Thanks in advance!!! <3

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