Saturday, June 28, 2014

Oskar Blues, Ten Fidy Imperial Stout

Oskar Blues Brewery
Ten Fidy
10.5% ABV
Imperial Stout
4 pack 12 oz. cans
Personal Rating: 9.3/10
Style Rating: 9.7/10
Availability: Seasonal

The guys that brought you the famous Dale’s Pale Ale, Old Chub, and Yella Pils also have devised this delicious, complex imperial stout entitled Ten Fidy.  This is an absolute must have for your craft beer collection and puts many other stouts I have had in the past to shame.  

Classified as a Russian Imperial Stout, it was inspired by the recipe used by brewers back in the late 1700’s.  Its history traces back to London, England and was created as a strong, dark beer used for export to the Russia Czars.  Among its other notable characteristics, its classification is mostly due to the high alcohol content.  Packed with enormous amounts of chocolate and roasted malts, the Ten Fidy boasts a bold malt character, high ABV rating, and almost a fruity or cherry finish on the tail end.  

Oskar Blues Brewery is a Colorado based operation that started roughly 10 years ago and has recently expanded their company into North Carolina allowing for 2 locations in which to produce high quality craft beer and also meet the demand of the public.  Owner/founder Dale Katechis runs an organic farm on premises where he harvests his own hop farm annually for use in his diverse collection.  The popularly known Dale’s Pale Ale is their staple beer and certainly has made quite an impact on the general public and craft beer consumers.  The Ten Fidy is only a seasonal beer from their repertoire (as stouts are mostly a fall/winter beer) but if you can find it out of season, it is absolutely worth a spin on the palate and promises not to disappoint.  

I did not find this pours with a big, thick, creamy head like one would expect from a stout even when aggressively poured, but its low level of carbonation is most likely the correlation between the two.  Either way, it did not affect the drinkability or overall presentation of this beer.  I am very fond of their commitment to canning over bottling.  I think their choice to stick to cans and shy away from flashy labeling on bottles allows the beer and recipe to speak for itself.  Though sold in 4 packs of 12 ounce cans, I would not suggest finishing them in one sitting.  I put the Ten Fidy in my personal category of dessert beers; to be enjoyed slowly after a meal.  

Be sure to try the Ten Fidy for all you stout lovers out there!  I thoroughly enjoyed the roasted malts and complexity of chocolate and cherries.  Cheers!

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