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Michael Heniff's picture

Judge's Review: 91 Rating - Old Fashioned Extraction by Sun King Brewery

May, 2019
Judges Rating: 
22 / 24
6 / 6
37 / 40
8 / 10
Overall Impression: 
18 / 20

Old Fashioned Extraction by Sun King Brewery is a barrel-aged Belgian-style Quad with fruit and spices and is being evaluated as a Mixed-Style Beer (category 34B in the 2015 BJCP Beer Style Guidelines).  Mixed-style beers are combinations of multiple styles from the BJCP guidelines; these combinations should be “harmonious and balanced”.  Belgian-style Quads (or Quadruples) are Belgian Dark Strong Ales (category 26D) and are noted for their deceptively strong strength with a harmony of rich malt, fruity esters, and peppery phenolics.  Old Fashioned Extraction is intended to mimic the mixed drink “old fashioned” which is a blend of whiskey, sugar, and bitters served with a twist of citrus rind.  Old Fashioned Extraction is aged for 14 months in 20-year-old whiskey barrels with orange peel and cherries.

Old Fashioned Extraction pours a clear dark brown with a small rim of off-white head.  The aroma is a rich, harmonious blend of bready and caramel malt with esters of cherry, plum, and fig.  Toasted oak and whiskey compliment the malt and esters.  The barrel character becomes more prominent in the flavor with notes of whiskey, toasted oak, and vanilla taking on equal intensity with the bready malt and dark fruit esters.  The alcohol strength is readily apparent with quite a bit of long-lingering warmth in the finish. 

Old Fashioned Extraction probably would not do well in a homebrew competition as mixed-styles require harmony; it is quite a difficult task to harmonize a Quad, barrel, fruit, and spice well together.   Also, I would typically consider this example too boozy for a wood-aged beer but given the context (emulating a mixed-drink), it is appropriate.  In summary, Sun King hit the “old fashioned” spot on.  Cheers!