Mar 1, 2016

Stone Brewing Double Bastard in the Rye

This is the second of two barrel-aged Stone Double Bastards purchased back in January. The first was the company’s Southern Charred, a very tasty brew with an excellent barrel influence. I enjoyed it and the Kentucky bourbon barrel traits it absorbed thoroughly, but Double Bastard in the Rye… wow.

This version of the big American strong ale was aged in Templeton Rye Whiskey Barrels and just goes to show you how vastly different a barrel can change a beer. The two barrel-aged beers may be close relatives, but this variation is head and shoulders above it’s sibling — and it’s all in the barrel.

The rye whiskey influence takes this beer to whole new level of flavor. The aggressive hop character of the base beer is there, as is the strong malt backbone, but there’s also a spicy bite of rye and smooth barrel impact. The end result is a truly fine sipping brew that is layered and deep in flavor, as well as warming (12.7% ABV) and comforting. My only regret is that I did not buy more.