At 7% alcohol, this may be a bit much for sessioning later today, but it’s certainly something I would be most happy to have in my glass come 9:00 or 10:00 this evening. And unlike my first Burns Day beer, this one, even though Kiwi in origin, has “Scottish” written all over it.
Although I’m still uncertain as to whether this truly contains a portion of peated malt – with nine different malts in the recipe, you’ve got to figure it’s at least possible, if not probable – I do find a slight peatiness in the aroma of this deep brown ale, alongside notes of caramel, milk chocolate, raisins, black cherries and plums, and a hint of vanilla. In the body, stewed fruit with raisin and date accents yields to a more chocolate-caramelly, roasty and very lightly coffee-ish body, all ending is a lingering finish with sweet roasty malt, drying hop and alcohol in terrific harmony.
This is a beer I think Burns would have enjoyed, and I know I do!