What to put away and haul out of the cellar now.
BRING THIS OUT:
Founders Nemesis 2010
It’s important to note the vintage of this annual release, mainly because the recipe changes each year. In 2010, Nemesis was an incredibly robust black barleywine, which clocked in at 12% ABV with 100 IBUs. Bold pine and orange hop notes pressed against bright brown sugar and a robustly sweet, roasty malt backbone. It was deliciously loud, and after a year in the cellar, emerges as a tighter symphony. Sweet chocolate scents pair with dark cherry, while tempered roast adds an edge. Light pine and orange hop scents take the second position, with subdued alcohol warmth filling out the background. This chewy beer’s softened roast contrasts sweet caramel and dark chocolate as the flavors wash over the tongue. Bright plum and raisin add an aged sweetness to the profile, while piney hops weave rustic flavors throughout. Nemesis will still benefit from more time in the cellar, but its emerging sherrylike mouthfeel and remaining hop profile is reason enough to enjoy a bottle today.
LAY THIS DOWN:
Goose Island Pepe Nero
Don’t be fooled by its lightless hue: This black saison is still a farmhouse ale at heart—and one that’s generously spiced with black peppercorns. Delicate nutty scents blend with pepper, clove and spicy hops for an earthy bouquet, lightened by a hint of fresh plum. Roasted nut flavors splash onto the tongue alongside bright plum notes and reach all the way back. That familiar Belgian bubblegum yeast flavor sweetens the beer’s crackerlike malts before black peppercorn emerges. The sharp pepper blends with clove for a spicy swallow. This beer is sophisticated today, but after a few years, a sweeter profile will take hold. As the beer ages, dark fruit flavors like figs and raisins will complement the tempered black peppercorn bite, while nutty malts will continue to develop, providing a more savory experience.