Sal Mortillaro II's picture

Judge's Review: 96 Rating - The Sage by Archetype Brewing

July, 2019

The Sage

Judges Rating: 
22 / 24
6 / 6
39 / 40
10 / 10
Overall Impression: 
19 / 20

The Sage by Archetype Brewing is being evaluated as a Belgian Dark Strong (Category 26D) according to the 2015 BJCP Guidelines.

This beer pours a deep amber color, bordering mahogany, with clear clarity and a slight ruby hue when held up to the light. A sudsy, tan-colored head is persistent as the beer is consumed. The overall aroma is fairly subdued with a low malt sweetness is apparent with subtle bready and raisin notes. Light wisps of ethyl alcohol and CO2 are in the background. There are no hop or ester notes in the aroma. The intensity of the flavors of this beer are much more than the aroma suggests. The malt sweetness is medium-high with a medium malt flavor of toasted bread crust and medium-low raisin and prune with low dark cherry and slight caramel. There is a medium bitterness and low spiciness that appears to be derived from the alcohol character. There is no hop or ester flavor in this beer. This eventually finishes off-dry with lingering alcohol and dark fruit character. This beer has a medium-light body with high carbonation. A well-tempered note of alcohol warmth fills the mouth but is not hot or solventy. There is a lovely smooth creaminess in this beer. Overall, this is an extremely well executed Belgian Dark Strong. A lovely marriage of alcohol and malt complexity add depth and character to this beer. Though the aroma was much more subdued than I expected of the style, the flavor and quality of execution make up for the lacking aroma. I recommend this beer if you are a fan of Belgian Dark Strongs.