Thursday, December 8th 2011
Eclipse Black IPA
(Crabtree Brewing Company)
Fresh from the source! Thanks so much, again, to Mike out in Colorado for hooking us up with a can of this recently released Black IPA from Crabtree. Eclipse, formerly known as Syzygy, is the first canned release from Crabtree and the canning was done by Boulder-based Mobile Canning. The cans were individually labeled using shrink-wrap labels, talk about a labor of love! If you're lucky enough to get a can of this in your hands you should know that a LOT of work went into getting it there. Cheers!
From the Crabtree Brewing site:
"Eclipse, our Belgo-Style Black IPA is an exquisite fusion of black, roasted chocolate malts, and a generous heap of hops. It's bitterly aggressive with a roasty quality, fruity esters and a spice scent making this one superior brew."
Here we go...
POUR: super dark brown to pitch in color as this floods the glass. Great looking coffee-colored head on top that sticks around for quite some time. Carbonation levels look spot on which can be tricky the first time around with canning. Looking at this now we'd have to say that it's a pretty nice looking pour!
AROMA: a bit of cirtrus up front followed by licorice, dark chocolate, French roast coffee, chocolate malt, anise and caraway seeds. Some hints of spices as well but nothing too overwhelming.
TASTE: one sip of Eclipse and we're certain you'll realize that this is not your ordinary dark beer. Lots of flavors coming flooding into your mouth and wreak some havoc on your palate. One second you're getting citrusy hop flavors and the next you're getting bombarded by caramel, apple cider, brown bread dough, rye bread and coffee. On the tongue this is soft as silk and smooth all around. A nice lingering sweet citrus flavors is all that's left after each swallow and it lights the way nicely for the next mouthful.
OVERALL: excellent beer. We loved the complexity of this beer and all the subtle nuances from the sweet dark malts to the bitter hops and the citrus and spice notes that came along for the ride. Perhaps the yeast strain is what makes this "Belgo" and brings along with it some of those telltale spicy notes. It's a guess anyways. Overall, we loved it and having only one can is almost as bad as never having a can at all! Just kidding. We're very lucky to have gotten a chance to try this very special beer.
NOTES: Crabtree Brewing also releases a Barrel-aged version of this beer called Syzygy Barrel-Aged Black IPA. The brewery's description of this beer sounds pretty amazing!
Posted by Russ
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