Monday, August 8, 2011

Left Hand Widdershins

This caught my eye the other day at the liquor store.  It looked to be a special release from the winter time which was still hanging out.  It peaked my interest being a "barley wine" and oaked aged, so I pulled the trigger and slammed down the cash.  The label also mentioned it was brewed with Belgian candy sugar which adds another level of intrigue. 

I ventured into the great unknown which is Widdershins and poured it into a snifter.  The head was small but was persistent.  There was faint oak with some fruitiness present in the nose.  The mouthfeel was thinner than I expected and left something to be desired.  The oak character was distinct without being overpowering.  The brew was very dry without much sweetness as I would expect from a barley wine.  The Belgian candy sugar was an interesting choice and is normally used in belgian ales to provide a higher alcohol content without contributing to sweetness or body.  Unfortunately the Belgian candy sugar resulted in the brew being overly dry and thin in my opinion.  Perhaps I'm being a bit unfair in my review due to my anticipation of a thick sweet barley wine which Widdershins was not.  I think the vague "American Strong Ale" moniker would have fit nicely.  Overall, this was a decent brew with a nicely blended oak character.  Check out Nate over at KC Brew Review and his recent review of Widdershins.  He favored this brew much more than I did.  It's always interesting to see how different people drink the same brew and experience it differently.  Next week is Beer Geek Psychology 101 - The effects of past experiences on a beer drinkers attitude towards his/her current brew.  Riveting!!!


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