Review: Innis & Gunn Kindred Spirits Irish Whiskey Barrel Aged Stout

Just in time for St Patrick's Day, Innis & Gunn has re-released a beer called Kindred Spirits, a combination of the Scottish-based Innis & Gunn's stout and Ireland-based Tullamore D.E.W. Irish Whiskey. The beer uses I&G's unique style of barrel aging to create a smooth and delicious Scottish stout.

I'm a big fan of collabs between breweries and distilleries so I'll never get enough of barrel aged beers!

Appearance: Pours a thick black with a hint of a cola brown hue to it near the bottom of the glass. The head is moderately thick and creamy with a yellowish cookie dough sort of colour to it. The head diminishes pretty slow yet gradually, leaving behind a very liberal amount of lacing on the side of the glass.

Aroma: There's a moderate amount of roasted malt to give it a light coffee-like presence to it, a bit of cookie dough, hint of sweet caramel, lightly charred oak, a hint of vanilla, and a faint hint of Irish whiskey and peat at the end.

Taste: The first impression I got from the tasting profile was both the stout itself and the Irish whiskey from the barrel. I get a rich stout with a bit of a roasted malt profile to it, followed by a light boozy sweetness of Irish whiskey - some caramel, oak, peat, vanilla. I also notice a hint of fruitiness, mostly apple/pear. The mouthfeel is quite light but slightly creamy to it, while the aftertaste is a bit of a charred wood/peat taste. As the beer warms up, it gets a bit sweeter, I get more of a caramel and apple presence to it, quite a nice taste for a lazy day off from work.

Overall Thoughts: I've sampled an indeterminate amount of barrel aged beers over the years and quite often they're overly boozy and don't really let the beer shine. The stout is mildly roasty but smooth and very easy to drink. It's fairly sweet and also has just enough of barrel aging to give it a welcoming taste of Tullamore D.E.W. but not to the point where its the dominating factor in the beer. Smooth, rich and subtle, this will be a solid beer to sample on St Patrick's Day!

No comments: