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Review: Great Divide Oak Aged Yeti Imperial Stout

February 28, 2011
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Unlike most trips I take to Gordon’s Liquors, when I went this past Saturday I actually had a plan of action. Usually I’ll lose track of time browsing their selection, but this time I knew just what I wanted to take home. I ended up grabbing the Sam Adams spring seasonal mixer (Revolutionary Rye review is forthcoming) and a 22oz bottle of Great Divide Oak Aged Yeti Imperial Stout. I was inspired to try this stout thanks to a friend’s photo on facebook. Thanks, Rob!

Great Divide Oak Aged Yeti Imperial Stout

Great Divide Oak Aged Yeti Imperial Stout

The first thing you notice after pouring your glass is that this stuff is black as midnight. It looks like oil as it pours, thick and dark. It formed the darkest head I’ve ever seen. It could have passed for some kind of chocolate foam. It leaves lacing that stays around forever. When I said it’s black I wasn’t lying; there is absolutely no light coming through this baby. It’s a thing of beauty.

The first whiff is a strong one. I smelled chocolate, roasted malt, alcohol, even raisins. The Oak Aged Yeti was, obviously, conditioned in oak barrels, and this is definitely apparent in the woodsy aroma.

Very similar flavors came through as I took my first sip, the chocolate and roasted malts. It actually might have been a bit too roasty for my tastes, but I’m no stout connoisseur. I could also taste some faint hop bitterness. There was a strong after burn of alcohol that faded fast, but at 9.5% ABV that’s to be somewhat expected. It’s nothing like the burn of a 15% ABV like Mephistopholes, but it’s definitely noticeable. It’s a nice, welcome touch.

I’ve never eaten an oak tree, so I have no idea what oak tastes like, but there was a strong, unmistakable taste in here that must have been oak. It’s powerful, but it works well with the other chocolate/roasty/coffee flavors.

The lacing does not leave!

The lacing does not leave!

This isn’t a beer for the faint of heart. It’s not as serious as some other imperial stouts out there, but it might be tough to drink for someone not used to the strong flavors involved in an imperial stout. Overall though, it was a very good beer. Not something I’ll add to my “go to” list, but I’d definitely enjoy having it again.

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