Friday Four Pack- Intrinsic Duality No. 1, In Unison Vol. 1, Meet the Motuekas, Neon Vibes
Is there such a thing as the dog days of January? Sure feels like it. As sure as the artic air brings low temps to Chicago, we’re back this week with four more beers that make the cold weather and short days just a little easier. Let’s get into it.
Pipeworks Brewing- Intrinsic Duality No. 1 (15.3% Barrel Aged Imperial Milk Stout)
What else is there to say about this beer than 36 months of barrel aged greatness? This Pipeworks/Binny’s collab pours an inky black and erupts with dark fruits, chocolate, and bourbon. As the beer settles in, the milk chocolate palate takes center stage- smooth and sweet. The big bodied beer strikes just the right balance between mouthfeel and drinkability, finishing with heat, bourbon, and spice with some complimentary notes of char and leather.
Mikerphone Brewing- In Unison Vol. 1 (13% Barrel Aged Cuvee of Barley wine & Imperial Stout)
I’m a big cuvée guy and have thoroughly enjoyed all of Mikerphones BA releases for the last 6-8 months (there have been several) so I was especially excited for this one. In Unison has a wheaty chocolate nose with soft hints of caramel and butterscotch. The dark fruits rush the stage as soon as the beer hits the palate with lots of tart cherry, raisin, and licorice. Perhaps a bit smoother than I expected. The finish has some nice bourbon heat, but still toffee sweet. Smells like a stout. Drinks like a barley wine.
Hop Butcher for the World- Meet the Motuekas (6.5% Hazy IPA)
This week, Hop Butcher introduces us to the Motuekas. This beer is dry hopped with three different lots of Motueka so we’re fully immersed. I’d been chilling this guy in the trunk of my Civic all afternoon, so it was a tidge cold when I poured it. Motueka’s old man is actually the Czech hop Saaz, and as the beer started to open up, it was clear this beer was a regular chip off the ole’ Saaz block. Lots of lemon and lime zest with a soft touch of biscuit. Plenty of bittering going on in the palate as the beer makes its way to a citrus rind finish. A fine solo debut.
Saint Errant Brewing- Neon Vibes (7.7% DDH IPA)
Our final beer this week is another Motueka forward beer- Saint Errant’s Neon Vibes. And I’ll tell you what, it looks great in a Chicago Cubs World Champions glass. I get peppery berry notes on the nose, with grape orange strawberry vibes. The jammy palate is sweet, but not surfeit. The bittering and earthiness of the beer develops a little later and finishes with some sappy pine and blueberry.
Just like that, another week in the books. We look forward to enjoying these beers and the longer days ahead. As we settle in for a weekend full of playoff football and Badger basketball, we hope you get a chance to try a few of these.