Monday, April 18, 2016

Tallgrass Sweet Tooth Review

Name: Tallgrass Sweet Tooth
Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale
ABV: 9.2%
IBUs: 30

A few months back, I reviewed an offering from Tallgrass Brewing's Explorer Series, which was a variation of their Vanilla Bean Buffalo Sweat aged in bourbon barrels with cinnamon. I know there have been other offerings but I sadly was not able to get around to them when I first had it. Today, I'm looking at what appears to be the newest offering in that series called Sweet Tooth.

Described as an Belgian Strong Ale with salt and brown sugar, this is apparently an homage to Tallgrass' love for Belgian beers. It's a statement I find a bit ironic considering that I never happen to see these any of their Belgian offerings anywhere on store shelves with the exception of their new Saison, which they released a couple months back. In all honestly, I suspect this beer may have something to do with New Belgium's Salted Caramel Brownie beer that they did as a collaboration with Ben & Jerry's, which to my understanding, was a pretty big hit for the brewery.

Appearance - Mildly hazy dark brown color with no amount of visible carbonation. The head is rather thin and has some semi-decent retention, however I'm getting nothing in terms of lacing.

Aroma - Brown sugar and light Belgian yeasts upfront, followed by a solid caramel malt backbone, some slight saltiness and a hint of dark chocolate. Wouldn't you know it, it smells like an actual salted caramel.

Taste - Much like the aroma, you've got some very strong brown sugar notes upfront with an equally strong caramel malt backbone. Towards the middle, you've got some light Belgian yeasts with a dash of cloves and some noticeable saltiness, which actually counteracts the sheer maltiness remarkably well. In the back is where you get a light hint of floral and bitter hops but that caramel malt, salt and dark chocolate notes almost completely overshadow it. I am getting some mild boozy heat in the back, but it's not enough to ruin the experience.

I'm not sure what Tallgrass' intention was with releasing this beer, but whatever reason it may be, they nailed it. It actually tastes like a salted caramel in liquid form, as hard as it is to believe. It's not too often I see a beer that tries going of a certain flavor and actually meet those expectations but they have done so here. Now I know for a fact it comes in a 4-pack of 12oz. cans (I got this as a single) and it is a bit pricy for what it is & the flavor may be a bit too sweet for some. However, to those looking for something exciting, Sweet Tooth fulfills that criteria.

Tallgrass Sweet Tooth - 9/10

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