Sunday, April 19, 2009

Dogfish Head - Palo Santo Marron

With a new OMG Beer! Headquarters, it feels right for the first review to be a beer I've never tasted. Dogfish Head, the Dr. Frankenstein of American breweries, doesn't just settle for a normal Brown Ale (see also their Indian Brown Ale). This brown ale is aged in the wood of the Palo Santo tree, a holy Paraguayan tree used also in South American winemaking. Palo Santo Marron is a very dark brown ale, almost black, with a sticky tan head that reminds one of chocolate milk. The aroma is sweet, evoking caramel, raisins, apples, and some alcohol (at 12% ABV, this is a sipping beer that packs a lot of warmth in it from beginning to end). Palo Santo Marron is really bold on the tongue, the bitterness is subtle for 50 IBUs (that's almost IPA range), and mostly just balances out the very sweet, dessert-like flavors that linger - vanilla, caramel, dark berries, plum, currant. The nice warming effect of the alcohol, along with the dessert aftertastes, make this an excellent after dinner or late night treat.

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