Either it says something about beer drinkers' desire for some more traditional offerings after a few years of boundary-busting silliness, or it says something about many of our readers. Whatever the answer, it's notable how often we publish a writeup on a beer a million miles away from the fruited, vanilla'd, TDH'd sorts that dominated beerstagram for a while and the social posts go off. Of recent vintage was one featuring a Molly Rose brown, another starred a series of Belgian ales in old-school stubbies from Watts River.
You'd put 3 Ravens' latest Nevermore one-off into such a bracket too, at least were it not for the can design whose swirls and colours suggest what's inside is very much a fruited, vanilla'd, TDH kinda beer. But it's far from that: here you have a dark chocolate old ale, a combination of four words bound to have Gen Z drinkers knocking down the doors of the Thornbury brewer (when a knock would surely suffice).
Of course, being a Ravens beer, it's not merely an old ale (a stronger, fruity-malty style with roots in England) brewed with dark chocolate. That wouldn't do at all. To reach that end point they've also blended in some of their barrel-aged stock ale (now up to seven years of solera-style action) and a barrel-aged imperial stout, along with Nicaraguan heirloom Chuno cacao husks from Mörk Chocolate and some treacle, ending up with a 7 percent ABV, deeply dark brown, ruby-tinged welcome to spring.
The barrel-aged elements contribute a spirituous top note, wrapped in chocolate aplenty. There's a potency to the way it envelopes the palate too, with a touch of dark fruit acidity accompanying a drying dark chocolate finish that borders on the tannic. Old & Husky by name, suited to dark and dusky consumption by nature.
Published August 30, 2023 2023-08-30 00:00:00