Craft Beer. Heavy Metal. Fuck Yeah.
Dogfish Head Burton Baton Oak Aged Imperial IPA
I always consider it a particular treat whenever I’m able to get my hands on anything from Dogfish Head Brewery. For reasons I don’t quite understand and would probably take too long to fully explain here, Dogfish no longer distributes to Indiana, which is a real bummer. Luckily, I live close enough to both the Michigan state line and Chicago that I usually have at least a couple of bottles of their exquisite 90 Minute IPA on hand. At a recent stop at one of my favorite spots to buy beer—the Sawyer Home & Garden Center, conveniently located in the same parking lot as the Greenbush taproom—I stumbled across a 4-pack of the Burton Baton Oak Aged Imperial IPA. Previous to this, I had never heard of an Oak Aged IPA, so after approximately three seconds of deliberation I snatched it up. Spoiler alert: I’m quite happy that I did.
Pour: 12oz bottle into a tulip glass
Appearance: Reddish-gold with thin white head that dissipates rather quickly, leaving some light lacing. No real sign of effervescence when direct light is shone into it.
Aroma: Virtually none, or at least not the type of aroma one would expect. There’s no oak and very little hops. Instead, there are slight floral notes, no real spice notes, and perhaps a touch of tropical fruit?
Flavor: Huge—it starts huge and finishes huge, and strangely, it tastes almost nothing like it smells. Very sweet on the tip of the tongue, then the oak flavor blossoms beautifully in the mid-mouth. Something piney leads into a nice, bitter hop finish. No real lingering aftertaste–more subtle oak than anything, with a touch of caramel.
Mouth Feel: Medium-bodied. It’s heavier than the typical Imperial IPA, certainly.
Overall: This is another very solid offering from Dogfish Head. The disconnect between the way the beer smells and the way it tastes is a bit surprising, but it doesn’t detract from the overall enjoyment of the beer.
Final Grade: B+