11/21/20: Warped Wing Brewing Company's Maple Bourbon Barrel Aged Abominator (2019)

1:01 PM

Have you ever encountered a doppelbock that smells like exactly like the best barrel-aged stouts? Well, that's what today's beer is. I just popped the cap and whoo boy. But I'm getting ahead of myself here. Let's back up for a few moments.

Today's beer is another from my favorite Dayton brewery. It's a maple bourbon barrel aged variant of Warped Wing's Abominator, which I've only had once in my life. I didn't write about it on my blog, but I did manage a quick post for it on my Untappd page. Today we'll find out how well this big boy version of the stuff holds up to my good first impression of the base beer.

Warped Wing's based in Dayton, OH. The brewery's named after a Wright Brothers innovation that enabled their flying machine to, well, fly. The brewery carries forward that spirit of innovation in the beer they make. Everything I just wrote was off the top of my head (WW's pretty much a constant around here). This is the brewery's official "About Warped Wing" page. How'd I do?

You know what's innovative? Sticking a doppelbock into maple bourbon barrels to age it. Since it no longer has a presence on WW's website, here's the beer's Untappd profile. This 10.1% ABV behemoth of a German-style lager that tastes of caramel and nuts, with a dollop of maple.

And, just like that, we're back to the beer's aroma. Like I said, this is a lager that smells like a BBA stout. I'm floored over here. I get hazelnut, I get caramel, oak, vanilla, and booze. There's a roastiness and a touch of dark fruit (I'm finding some plumminess). I'm also picking up on a straw aspect. There's all of this, yet I can only find maple on the nose when I lift the bottle for a swig. This is fine--that means I get to look forward to it as more of a flavor additive than a scent. Purrl gave my bottle three whiffs when I offered it to her so, while I'm a huge fan of the lager's bouquet, she's not super into it.

Maple BBA Abominator has an explosive flavor profile, a wonderful collision of its many component flavors. I get chocolate, coffee, booze, maple, caramel, oak, and vanilla. All of this is big and bold and delicious without compromising the whole of the lager. That finish is still crisp, clean, and lightly hopped. Now I've fallen through the floor and am lying in my crawl space over here.

Let's talk for a moment about that mouthfeel. I've compared this beer to a stout a few times but that stops here. This is a lager to the core, with a proper accompanying lager mouthfeel. It's light and easy, crisp and clean, quaffable and crushable. 

It's a cold, grey, rainy November day. Pretty much a perfect time to play video games. The latest Zelda game, Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, dropped yesterday and, as soon as I get this post up, I'll be going back to playing it.

However, this beer reminds me of the time I bought my PlayStation Portable. See, I got it the November before Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII came out in anticipation of playing that game on it (Crisis Core is, of course,100% worth it. It's a great game). I bought a PSP bundle that came with Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions

I got home from the store and booted it up. It was this exact time of year, cold and cloudy, and I sat in front of the fireplace working my way through the game's prologue. There's something special about turning a dreary grey day into a romp through a fantasy land.

When I had that sole can of the regular Abominator, I had it because I knew I'd be writing this post and wanted to have an opinion on the base beer. I'm glad I drank it, because I'm able to say that Maple Bourbon Barrel Aged variant stands head and shoulders above the lager that spawned it. Warped Wing has wrought something truly magical with this beer. It's a full and flavorful doppelbock that's a perfect blanket against a cold, grey day. This is a 10/10 beer, one that pushes the boundaries of what a classic beer style is capable of.

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