Last year people lost their fucking minds when these barrel aged releases dropped. The inevitable comparisons to BA Huna flew left and right, people did predictable shit like asking for CCK and Blauw, and the bottle counts were in the hilariously low Floridian range, 200-300 each variant.
If you are new to the game, here you go:
TL;DR, in a huge upset, the apple brandy wasn’t the best, it wasn’t even second. Jack Daniels was the best and everyone smiled khaki stained grins and felt content with the 1700 calories they just drank. BUT WHAT ABOUT THIS YEAR?
So this year we have Four Roses (bourbon) Tequila and Double Barrel treatments. Let’s just get right into this horchata gang bang already.
Let’s say this at the outset: they all look like Mexican cake. Big surprise, can we move on and obviate the need for me to craft the same tired similes to obfuscated liquids? ALRIGHT GOOD.
Four Roses Bourbon Treatment
I came in this year a touch wiser and placed my chips on this old standby to perform in a manner akin to the Jack Daniels treatment. BOY, do I have some growing up to do. This was simply too sweet and the bourbon profile didn’t mesh well with all the cinnamon and additions to the beer. It was anomalous because the oak and dryness of Jack Daniels worked so well, but who knows maybe they had ultra saturate barrels? I AM JUST HERE TO SPECULATE. It was easily the hottest and for 10.5% abv, shit was almost cloying on the nose with ethanol and fusel notes. Having hit my old 4R spot a few times I welcomed a spicy rye grain profile, instead it was a musky cinnamon bomb with cloying sweetness like a churro. It was by no means bad, but with so many BA mexican beers out there these days, adjuncts falling out of their loose pink socks, you can do far better and give up far less.
Double Barrel Treatment
Alright so everyone talks about double BALs these days, but some people grew up under power lines or subjected to New Jersey public school systems. Double barrel means it was casked in a barrel for a period of time, then racked entirely to a SECOND barrel. It doesn’t mean you blended two different barrels together like some kinda slackjawed asshole. This beer was aged 12 months in bourbon and rye whiskey barrels from Pritchard’s distillery. I don’t know if that means the former or the latter. With such an overlap in the treatments, it really doesn’t matter. However, I suspect this is more of a grand cru blend because it didn’t have that classic oxidized, flat, seemingly increased viscosity that double barrel treatments usually generate (DBH, DBD, etc.) No one gives a shit, just call it whatever generates them chubs.
This is a nice medium between the two variants, perfect balance of sweetness but intricate depth. The chili and cinnamon doesn’t dominate, in a stout with THIS MANY POST-BOIL THINGS OCCURRING being focused and not sloppy in one respect is a brewing miracle. This would outright be the best if the remaining deviant wasn’t so damn good and flat out interesting. The alcohol is well integrated, the peppers show up as a cameo on the mid palate and never overstay their welcome and the barrel profile supports more than dominates. Really tasty through and through.
WINRAR WINZIP ARCHIVE CHAMPION: Tequila Barrel Treatment
This beer is fucking phenomenal and easily the best of the Mexican Cakes made to date. Usually, when I hear about a Tequila BA offering, it’s from Mikkeller or something and invariably will be raw, scratchy, HSV of the palate. Nothing could be further from that result in this instance. The tequila integrates flawless with the cinnamon, tames the sweetness and ratchets back the heat of the peppers. It is like a beautiful Mexican Mr. Holland conducting a cascading symphonic opus. The alcohol is imperceptible and this knocks out all of the other BA Huna variants even, with the exception of the untouchable apple brandy. Whatever you have to give up for this single variant, disregard all else and get it. They crushed it out of the park with this and set a benchmark for this increasingly crowded segment.
So there you have it, what’s that? Rank them globally? Alright, sheesh:
6. Four Roses Barrel
5. Apple Brandy
4. Wine Barrel
3. Double Barrel
2. Jack Daniels Barrel
1. Tequila Barrel.
Don’t act like you serious care about this petty nonsense. You’re still crying about how Pirate Bay got shut down, real srs life problems.