Friday, February 17, 2012

Brewery Ommegang Three Philosophers

I'll jump straight to the point on this one; This is easily one of my top-five favorite beers ever. Three Philosophers is a Belgium-style quadrupel ale from Brewery Ommegang in Cooperstown, New York. This particular 750ml bottle was bottled in 2011 with a corked top. I don't often mention  the bottle the beer comes in because, really, who cares? However, it's worth mentioning that is beer is packaged quite beautifully.

What is inside the bottle, however, is even more beautiful. Three Philosophers is a brown, almost garnet color which pours with an awesome four fingers of frothy, beige head. Retention is really good and there is quite a bit lacing left behind on the glass. The aroma is intense and complex. It is rich with dark malts and fruits, such as raisins and dates. There is very little in the way of hops in the aroma, but there is some alcohol present.

The aroma is quite indicative of  the flavor, with the dark malts being the most prevalent. The fruitiness detected in the aroma is also present in the flavor, primarily in the form of raisins, but there is also "earthiness" to the taste. In addition to the raisins, there is also noticeable cherry flavor. In fact, the label indicates that "ale with cherries" is added to the beer. This is a sweet and fruity beer, but not overly so, with a full body and creamy mouthfeel. There is minimal hops bitterness, but, at nearly 10% ABV, there is a nice warming of the palate from the alcohol at the finish that helps balance things out.

I don't think I can overstate how awesome this beer is. I've had it a couple of times now and, much like reading a good novel several times, I seem to find something new each time that I didn't notice before. If you have not had Three Philosophers, it is absolutely a must-try.

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