Featured Beer #15 – Avery Beast Grand Cru Ale Samaels Oak Aged Ale

Halloween Style, The Final Round. With Demons.

Well, it’s trick-or-treat night and as promised, I’m committed to being the Halloween version of the Scrooge and saying “ba-humbug” on the handing out of candy.  Our front porch light is off, which on this particular night is the universal symbol for:

Us: Don’t bother, little kids, alright.  We don’t want to hear your lame, nonsensical jokes you try to stumble through.  Jokes that force us to let out a fake chuckle, hand you candy we wanted to eat ourselves and eventually, will be the reason your parents shell out thousands for unnecessary dental work.

So when I say “us” it’s because both my wife and I are home tonight.  Really what I’m saying is me, because my wife would be all about handing out candy if she remembered to buy candy.  We do have quite a few ketchup packets from In-N-Out Burger, and although that would be hysterical to hand them out to all the little snot-nosed beggars tonight, well, I’ve got to write.

"In-N-Out Ketchup Packets"

Not exactly bite-size Snickers, but in a pinch for Beggar’s Night, they’d do.

Don’t get me wrong, I like kids.  Sometimes.

What am I writing about on Halloween night for VHT?  The last of the Halloween themed beers, that’s what.  One beer that has the potential to take me to death’s door, the other to kick it open and shove my ass through.  It’s a one-two combination from Avery Brewing Company.  It’s the Demons of Ale series.  First, Samael’s Oak Aged Ale, then second, The Beast Grand Cru Ale.

You know what I just heard?  A knock at the door.  Friggin’ little punks nowadays don’t even care whether your front porch light is on or not anymore.  I’m going to get those ketchup packets and if this becomes a trend, well, a hammered up thirty-something will answer the door, tell them he doesn’t want to hear their shit, drop the packets in their bag and emphatically slam the door.
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Now that’s celebrating Halloween, man!

Avery Beast Grand Cru Ale Samaels Oak Aged Ale

"Avery Brewing Company Samael's Oak Aged Ale"

Demon #1 – Samael’s Oak Aged Ale from Avery Brewing Company.

Alright, back on track.  The first beer, Samael’s Oak Aged Ale is a monster.  Well, a demon specifically.  Just know that we’re talking about a beer that’s 15.31% alcohol.  It smells like liquor.  It tastes like liquor.  It pretty much is liquor.  The bottle says it was released April of 2011.  Most beers go bad after time but when you’re talking about beer of this magnitude, they can age for over ten years and, much like wine, get better with age.

I’ve talked about sipping imperial-styled beers; this goes way beyond an imperial and is a sipper if there ever was one.  Does it taste good?  Yeah, but like I said, I don’t think of beer when I drink this.  I think of, well, right now I’m thinking about my face tingling, because that’s what’s happening.

Another knock.  Is there some fat kid outside that, while peering through the window has spotted the stash of ketchup packets next to me, and is salivating for them?

You want ’em tubby, you’ll get ’em.

Before I tackle the next beer, or before it tackles me, let it be known that these beers were probably not meant to be drank on the same night.  You could split one with a friend or loved-one and be feeling good after.  Having two on the same night is just dumb.  But hey, I’m dumb, so here we go.

It’s time for The Beast Grand Cru Ale, a 16% alcohol filled sledgehammer of a beer that, in tandem with Samael, will indeed make my tomorrow a Violent Hangover Thursday.  The Beast bottle I have says it was released in July of 2012 so this one would probably be better waiting until two more Halloweens from now before drinking it.  I got impatient and thirsty on the same night so here I am, robbing The Beast of his future potential.

"Avery Brewing Company The Beast Grand Cru Ale"

Demon #2 – The Beast Grand Cru Ale, also from Avery Brewing Company.

Now, the tingle has amplified in the face region and moved into my fingers.  The liquor-beers are doing their job.

The Beast really has a lot of complex flavors going on.  The dominant taste is alcohol, no doubt about that, but the ingredients say it was brewed with various brewing sugars like raisins, dates, molasses, alfalfa honey and dark Belgian candy sugar, whatever that is. Regardless, it’s an interesting flavor and one that I think anyone would like, if you can handle the alcohol.  Samael’s Oak Aged Ale tastes a lot like a fine liquor and since it was brewed with American oak chips, has an oaky finish.  Both are completely different yet similar in showcasing what a craft beer can be when combined with a little creativity.

And a shit ton of alcohol.

They’re both very good and deserve to be respected more than what I did tonight.  I had an idea in my head to utilize their demonic natures for Halloween night, capitalizing on the fact that they were both over 15% alcohol, which seemed fitting for a holiday as sinister as this one is.  This idea will backfire on me tomorrow.

The notion of buying a beer and keeping it for years before you drink it is ridiculous to me, but if you’re inclined to try them and you can find them, because they are extremely limited, buy two.  Drink one and store one, until like 2020 in some place dark.  Unless you’re impatient, thirsty and have a death wish one night, then just drink them both at the same time like I did.

Then you’ll get what’s happening here.

Hey, I just realized, no more knocks.  Probably because it’s 11:00 PM right now.

So Happy Halloween people, and whether it’s Halloween or not, try to find Samael’s Oak Aged Ale and The Beast Grand Cru Ale from Avery Brewing Company.  Try something way beyond what you think beer is and can be.

For some reason I’m getting hungry.

Lucky for me I’ve got these ketchup packets here.


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