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I had an opportunity to taste and review several barrel-aged variants of the award winning Speedway Stout from AleSmith Brewing Company located in San Diego, CA.
Bourbon Barrel-Aged Speedway Stout
12% abv. Pours mocha black with a nice thin mocha head that lasted throughout my session. There was an overwhelming boozy aroma and at that point, I wished I had aged this beer a little longer. There were notes of oak, vanilla, figs, and some coffee in the nose initially. I picked up roasted oats, oak, vanilla, chocolate, coffee beans, and that bourbon goodness in the flavors as well. Medium bodied beer with a slightly boozy finish. Overall, a solid bourbon barrel aged stout!
Bourbon Barrel-Aged Speedway Kopi Luwak
12% abv. This Speedway variant is brewed with Kopi Luwak Coffee that has been matured in premium bourbon barrels. Kopi Luwak is considered one of the world’s most expensive and rare coffee varieties; the beans were specifically selected for their ripeness and quality by the civet, a small jungle marsupial that feeds of the fruit of the coffee cherry. Pours black with a mocha head that leaves a small trace on the glass with a dissipating off white head. Smell is sweet and malty with roasted malts, burnt caramel, toffee, vanilla fudge, charred wood, dark chocolate, dark roast coffee, chocolate covered cherries, and sweet bourbon. Taste is sweet, slight bitterness and malty with roasted malts, caramel, toffee, vanilla fudge, charred wood, dark chocolate, roasted coconut, bourbon, and that delicious Kopi Luwak coffee. Mouthfeel is soft, velvety, and near full bodied. Finish is slightly astringent, but sweet along with some roasted malts and coffee. Great balance between the barrel and base beer. Very tasty and my favorite of the bunch!
Speedway Vietnamese Coffee (regular)
Pictured left. 12% abv. Pours dark brown with a nice frothy two-finger khaki head. There was an overwhelming dose of coffee, oak, and dark chocolate in the nose. Comes down so easy in the flavors along with that delicious Vietnamese coffee, however, it was not as bold as it was in the aromatics. Lots of roasted oak and dark chocolate. Thick mouthfeel with a slightly bitter back finish. Well put together!
Bourbon Barrel-Aged Speedway Vietnamese Coffee
Pictured right. 12% abv. This showed same abv despite it being a bourbon barrel-aged beer! Darker pour than the regular Vietnamese coffee with a very nice one-finger mocha head. That bourbon booze was definitely detected in the nose, slight coffee – not as overpowering like the regular version. Reminds me of the barrel-aged Old Raspy, hints of vanilla and oak throughout the flavors. This was definitely a smooth tasting beer – keeps the regular Vietnamese coffee flavors intact along with roasty marshmallows as well. Medium bodied and good thickness throughout.