Heavy Seas Yule Tide (2013)

One of our last stops while leaving Baltimore was another brewery tour. This one was a few miles outside of the main area of Baltimore and was Clipper City/Heavy Seas. Their beers are pretty well-distributed around Jersey and I’ve reviewed a few of them. One of my biggest complaints about the brewery was that there was nothing to sample that was outside of their regular lineup that I could get at my local beer store. This bomber offering was their winter seasonal that I bought two bottles of. One was to sample now and one to throw in the basement to get some age on it. Let’s see how this one goes.


ABV: 9%

Style: American Amber/Red Ale

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Aged for 6 weeks in Jamaican Rum barrels, this Imperial Red offers a full malt body dominated by toast, chocolate, and caramel notes. Rum barrel aging imparts a rich buttery rum character along with oaken vanilla notes. Ginger offsets the overall sweetness by adding its own drying zing.”

Random: The brewery tour itself was weird too, and not necessarily in a good way.

This brew poured with a one finger, tan head that dissipated quickly with no lacing left on the glass. The body was a dark, cloudy mahogany color with no visible carbonation due to the cloudiness. The nose was all ginger and rum with some significant booze attached to it. The taste was an amplified version of the nose. There was lots of crazy ginger with rum right behind. At this point, it’s probably prudent of me to mention that I really don’t like rum or things that smell like rum. Some hops came through after a few sips, but wood really dominates. Vanilla was present as well. The body was thick with high carbonation. There was a long, boozy finish with oak. For me, this beer was just okay. I’m curious to see if a few years of age could improve this bad boy.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

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