EVIL TWIN PAPPY ROUNDUP: Jesus Takes Even More Biscotti Breaks

Well if you have been peeping the trade boards recently, you may have heard about these “Torst only bottles” of Pappy Barrel Evil Twin offerings.  A few of them escaped to distro and subsequently have been fetching hilarious sums, so let’s see if the BALs are more than the sum of their staves in today’s review:


“DDB thank you for putting the hot sauce bottles in focus, follow up question, which mid-day strip club was this taken at?”

Let’s start with a base beer of which I have had consistent “meh” reactions regardless of treatment.  My biggest complaint about this beer, pappy or otherwise, is that it has that Mikkeller/continental European love of black patent malt that runs unchecked so often.  The base beer as a result leans dangerous close in the realm of roast, charcoal briquette, burnt toast, and borderline sharpie.

This barrel treatment however, is phenomenal.  It takes a buttery power sander and smooths all of the nubs and unsightly aspects of the base beer and applies a vanilla and creme brulee lacquer that is outstanding.  The real issue is that it can’t tame what this Eliza Doolittle is at heart: a cockneyed skoal dip cup spitting ruffian.  In sum, it is a very good beer that is a hilarious merger of transatlanticism not unlike Death Cab for Cutie.

So the verdict: accept a pour but don’t get soaked for a Flora Coovie for this one, let your more adventurous trade partners get jumped behind the Arby’s for this BAL treatment.


This however, holy fuck: a complete masterpiece. This is not only the best beer that Evil Twin has ever made, but it enters the canon of best ba stouts ever/top DDB beers for 2015.  This takes the already awesome base beer, in conjunction with the mindblowing good BA IBB, and then somehow ekes FURTHER improvement on that model.

While the standard bearer for this experience is usually BA speedway and BCBCS, this goes beyond both of those in several aspects.  First, the coffee is not so dominant as to bruise the barrel character.  You get mocha and the frap, with a clean roasty dryness from the treatment.  The coffee melds seamlessly like spot rivets on the side of this coffee battleship.

This is something absolutely worthy of being put inside of you.  The lengths are immaterial for something of this caliber, and I don’t care whether this is Westbrook or “flavor technician” Jeppemaster Flex, this is undeniably world class.


Sure, you could probably open up a Bourbon County Coffee and look out the rain-streaked window and dream of what could have been.  Is that how you want to live your life: settling for the first bean to flick that came along, grinding the same predicable two plate experience ad infinitum?  I didn’t think so.  Buy yourself a hitachi massager and you do you.

I cringe when I see impressionable dumbfucks go apeshit over magic PERPY VERN WERNKLER BERRELS.  It usually means some amorphous Buffalo Trace sourcing, or it could be third use, or the old North Carolina special: aged 7 weeks.  However, in this instance, the treatment is undeniable in the notable improvement.


MA/NY TIP MUSHING – Two Svelte Bangers: Sixpoint 4Beans and Nightshift Whirlpool

Sixpoint has enjoyed that happy medium of creating local buzz that satiates locals but never creates a fever pitch loud enough to ruin things for locals. It is that sweet Beachwood Brewing and Selin’s Grove spot. Once a husky manchild grabs the conch and starts offering up crazy trades, the chum is in the waters and locals might as well write that brewery off. Resin was a solid offering and the buzz was not insubstantial for this adjunct extravaganza.

always flickin them beans, stayin on that grind

always flickin them beans, stayin on that grind

Sixpoint Brewing, New York

10% Baltic Porter, skinny stout
“With the addition of Madagascar vanilla beans, 4BEANS takes Sixpoint Imperial Porter to the next level. Romano beans used by bygone brewers provide body, as the flavors of dark malt, cocoa and coffee are rounded out by smooth vanilla. The result is a quadrality of roasted, savory, and complex flavors. Modern formulation meets Baltic tradition and BKLYN partnership…it’s Mad Science.”

At the outset I rolled my eyes at reading the list of ingredients like when you see the trailer for a Kevin James movie, making stark predictions. This is like if the Kevin James movie was directed by Lars Von Trier and somehow depth and character were massaged from the assumptions. The look is the thinnest stout/baltic porter this side of Sexual Chocolate/Kern River Class V stout. It appears more pleasantly watery as a result. In a field of tanks, the agile healer is a welcome respite.

The nose is also excellent and presents waves of coffee with whoppers, malt balls, kit Kat bars and a lingering baker’s chocolate. If you were expecting some tactless car crash, there’s plenty of other lackluster failures to choose from, this beer is far too nimble and poised to fall into mediocrity.

The taste drinks more akin to a robust coffee Porter and shockingly conceals the Abv and substantial malt profile well. It is incredible that it can keep all the adjunct balls in the air and never seem unfocused. This is a clear example of a beer that doesn’t call out for barrel aging simply because the base beer stands so confidently on its own.

Everybody loves Romano

Everybody loves Romano


This is certainly worth seeking out and you would be remiss to overlook this svelte barista’s embrace.

INTERMISSION: Julius is still banging out of the can.  People justifiably ISO this hard, as they well should.

INTERMISSION: Julius is still banging out of the can. People justifiably ISO this hard, as they well should.


Night shift has presented a checkered past. There are few breweries with more inconsistent valleys in quality between their releases. For every exceptional weiss release, another viva habanero nightmare is sure to follow. Then most recently they absolutely crushed it out of the park with the apple brandy el elechedor. They are like a smoking hot, albeit abusive ex girlfriend whom you never quite know when to write off completely.

inb4 grout work jokes

inb4 grout work jokes

Nightshift Whirlpool
Session IPA? Pale Ale? ZFG

4.5% APA
Fear not, this offering pulls Nightsift firmly into the ranks of facebook official. Whirlpool pours an unbdolutely beautifully refreshing hue of meyer lemon and silky foam. It might just be two row, but God damn it is servicing the session segment hard on aesthetics alone.

The nose delivers on the visual promises and serves up raked leaves, tangelo zest, orange rind, and a resinous watery conifer slider high and inside.

If you loved the likes of Ponto and dare I say even Edward, this does a fantastic job of bringing equal or higher quality to an ever teeming segment crowded with so many cost saving stripped down pale ales. The mouthfeel is incredibly crisp and dry, there is less on the fruit and citrus front, but the extremely dialed in grass trimmings make this finish like something Jester King would make if they every decided to use a California ale strain FOR ONCE IN THEIR LIVES.

For a style that has to work three times as hard to impress, Nightshift killed it with this one, it’s like watching highlight tapes and saying “holy shit that is an amazing nose guard.” Imagine how fast and controlled this has to be to warrant comment.

I need to lock down that apple brandy lecherous hotness. This motherfuck drives around in an apple.  How is that even possible, Richard Scary?

I need to lock down that apple brandy lecherous hotness.
This motherfuck drives around in an apple. How is that even possible, Richard Scary?

I know reading two positive reviews is no fun to read, SHEESH. Don’t worry guys, I am sure someone will send DDB some Big Sky beers soon enough.


Stone Brewing, Mikhail’s Odd, Bourbon Barrel Aged IRS with Ryan Bros Espresso, Giving BA Speedway a Run for its Beans

Well it took years and years and years, but we finally have a legit Stone Barrel Aged IRS in a bottle: and both variants are fucking amazing. The abv is boosted, the mouthfeel is silkier, and they took all ratchet elements and made them more ratcheterer. Now I know you are reticent to believe old DDB after Friday’s palate bashing, but trust me on this one: California Coffee Stouts, this beer is ridiculous. I crossed my fingers, popped the most annoying cork in the world and prayed for no infection like those Planned Parenthood waiting room feels.

The Classic Fyodor tastes like a more aggressive version of my 2008 BA Stone IRS Review, which is to say it is fucking phenomenal.

Enough pandering, let’s get up in these guts and grind some of them beans.

Not only is this not infected, it is outrageously good in the platonic sense, good to the point of outrage at its existence. Them Forms.

Not only is this not infected, it is outrageously good in the platonic sense, good to the point of outrage at its existence. Them Forms.

Stone Brewing Company, Escondido
13.9% Abv (!)
38 ibus warrior hops in the boil, in the mash roasted barley and pale, amber and black malts, Ryan Bros coffee in the whirlpool

A: Just look at that bad bitch, this beer can pull a kickdoe and take the door like a malty black flashbang. The bottle is obnoxiously hard to open, the cork not only got stuck, but it broke under moderate force. At first I almost subbydeuced in my pants when I saw the substantial carb after being traumatized by the 2010 BA IRS debacle. There was no mistaking this shit though, shit looks viscous but not underattenuated, that Aristotelian Golden Mean in the Parabola and CW16 range, where you dont feel like a diabetic fuck (see: Huna) but you don’t feel like you are counting Weight Watchers Points (see: pre-2013 Eclipse/Czar Jack.) The mocha foam looks like a coffee drink prepared by one of those Suicide Girl looking baristas. Beer make you all nervous, you be buying cake pops and shit.

After dealing with missteps and knockoffs, Stone finally knocked it out of the park with its flagship offering.

After dealing with missteps and knockoffs, Stone finally knocked it out of the park with its flagship offering.

S: God fucking damnit. Why does this have to be $20 a 500ml with a nose like that? This takes that BA Speedway model and ramps up the roast and acidity like cold brew batches from Stumptown, chocolate and kaffir lime leaf, roasted graham cracker, mallowfoam and milk chocolate. The s’more joke is lingering but the coffee dominates and prevents an overlying sweetness and adds to the balance.

T: The sharp abv lingers more a moment on the tongue but is a perfect compliment to the toasty acidity of the coffee. There is a drying twix/chocolate aspect that warms the bitter zones with a light hoppy touch and closes with that same espresso bean waft that was such a fucking deal in the base beer. Nothing changes here, this beer just took that Impreza base beer and amped shit up to that Subaru RS Rallycar levels. My natural comparison is Morning Delight as it comes across as more substantial than BA Speedway, and I am too pussy to lock down KBBS so I have to leave the imrpession as a coovee between those two. The barrel lingers along the gumline with an incredible vanilla that isn’t that Lipsmacker lip gloss/Coldstone Creamery shit, its like the tannic oaky vanilla you get from Angel’s Envy left at room temp.

Between the magnificent caramel and vanilla of the barrel lies a poised coffee maltness, ready to embrace you

Between the magnificent caramel and vanilla of the barrel lies a poised coffee maltness, ready to embrace you

M: This is lighter than the hefty Abyss and massive BT/Huna finishing gravity masters, but so much for the better. Honestly I am not surprised given the character of regular ass, delicious Stone IRS. The coffee and the barrel just lay in bed with you like an exotic Craigslist casual encounter and you have way more than you bargained for. This shocked the hell out of me given how completely shitty most of the QM series presentations are, let’s be realistic here. I am the furthest thing from a Stone fanboy and their saison game could not even be salvaged by Stillwater intervention; but this, this is some other worldly shit.

D: Here we are 650 words in and the bottle is almost gone, exceedingly crushable and the complete lack of the cloying sweetness on the closer is underscored in a helvetica font by the dryness of the bourbon barrel and coffee toastiness. Inevitably some poor dipshit will interject with “BCBW COFFEE COSTS LESS AND IS PROBABLY BETER.” In this instance yes, BCBCS is much more affordable, but it simply is not better as a vehicle for delivery of coffee and barrel character, because this beer is stripped down with them Sparco seats and coffee momo pedals. BCBCS is far more affordable but this beer is simply the better executed of the two. If you are a poor fuck without a Fedex account, tell yourself whatever gets you to sleep at night, I guess. The luxury is in its brashness, both beers are amazing and I love BCBCS, but this is a whole different game. Highly recommended.

This stout is more massive than it appears, take it in carefully.

This stout is more massive than it appears, take it in carefully.

Narrative: Mikhail Bulgakov rapped his state-issued fountain pen on the rich glaze on his imported poplar desk. The title sheet for his magnum opus, The Master and Margarita, lay unfinished and the onset of writers block lay across his limbs as he slumped into a supple lambskin loveseat. “It is not right, I need…something,” he remonstrated to himself as he rifled through his cabinets, seeking a generic bottle of rye whiskey issued by the local magistrate in gratitude for his recent work and gracious compliance with his stern ban. The silky sting of the rye made him long for a decadent malty treat, the kiss of a deep chocolate contraband, disallowed in the new Republic. “THAT IS IT, by God,” he feverishly sat at the compact Hammond 1B typewriter, fingers rapping out his masterpiece, urging aesthetic to the highest paradigm predicated on a single desire: to drink a fantastic stout free from governmental oppression. “Manuscripts don’t burn” in the same fashion that his desire for a creamy decadent libation burned in his heart. It would take decades to realize his dream, but the stark love of Russian Imperial Stouts and the dreams of free fermentation licenses powered the candid reality behind Margarita. The world was forever changed.