Sierra Nevada Brewing Company Narwhal
What the brewers say
A malt-forward monster that features incredible depth of malt flavor, with notes of espresso, baker's cocoa, roasted grain, and a light hint of smoke. Aggressive but refined with a velvety smooth body and decadent finish.
What our panel thought
Aroma: “Nice dark malt sweetness. Some caramel, a little toffee, some roast, chocolate, and coffee in the back. Prunes and dark fruit character is very strong, with cherry the strongest. Spicy alcohol and mild malt. Not an aggressive nose.”
Flavor: “Roast character is blended and balanced with dark fruit esters. Caramel, chocolate, and slight hints of toffee come in later. Very low hops character. Nice sweet dark malt character. Dark fruit sweetness, cherry, raisin, and prune.Finishes slightly sweet and creamy with no lingering bitterness but a slight warmth.”
Overall: “Enjoyable and has nice malt richness. A well-done beer that is balanced and sufficiently thought out. Malt complexity is nice. The sweetness from the fruity esters as well as the malt sweetness carry through. The heat helps to finish this beer to keep it from being too sweet. This is another barleywine interpretation of the style but the stout foundation is intact. It needs a little age to soften the alcohol edge.”