This beer came to me courtesy of my Dad, who has been contributing to my craft beer habit over the last several years by picking up beer in Texas I can't get here in Arkansas. He also keeps a lookout for news, releases, and occasionally he'll have something I haven't, and pass it along. Such is the case here, a San Antonio brewery and distillery that is fairly new and cranking out some adventurous brews. Kudos to them and hopefully they'll have long continued success. To the review...
La Bestia Aimable ABV 9.5%
Ranger Creek Distillery 22 oz bomber poured into a snifter
A - For starters, the label on the beer is like artwork; its gorgeous. A sticker on the side says it is a January of 2012 batch. This beer poured a bright, clear garnet color with one finger of creamy white head. Not a lot of retention here, but the lacing and clinging bubbles show legs and promise.
S - A bready malt aroma is quickly overtaken by a sugary sweet burst. Brown sugar, molasses, dark fruit. An earthy tone creeps in towards the end and you can finally get that Belgian 'funk.' I was worried for a second there. The finish is all honey and oak.
T - A very sweet, almost cloying first sip. It is banana bread and sugar and honey and YEAST, lots of yeast. And unbalanced amount of yeastiness. The malts are almost overtaken here and I am not sure they stand up to the yeast and sweeter notes. There is certainly some fig, dark fruit and funk here as well, but it just doesn't seem to all come together. A bit disappointing really.
M - Medium bodied buoyed by lots of carbonation, which does help to cut the sweetness somewhat.
O - If there were just a bit more balance one way or the other, I could write very similar tasting notes in a positive light. As it is, I just can't. I don't hate it, its an admirable effort, and still drinkable, but it just lacks harmony. I am looking forward to my Mesquite Smoked Porter from these guys, and any others I can get my hands on. Keep up the efforts, good luck to you!