Tag Archive: Ingenious


Ingenious: Birthday Three (USA: Imperial Stout: 12.5% ABV)

Visual: Opaque black. The head fizzes up but doesn’t last long. Slightly fizzy in general.

Nose: Chocolate cake. Coffee cake. Walnut. Alcohol tingle. Flat cola. Icing sugar. Lactose. Chocolate liqueur.

Body: Thick. Chocolate cake and chocolate cream. Bitter cocoa. An even thicker twist to the feel in the middle. Sweet licorice. Black cherry. Sticky toffee pudding. Light chalk. Gunpowder tea. Fizzy cola bottles.

Finish: Bitter cocoa. Bitter chocolate cake. Chalk like touch. Coconut. Treacle sponge. Flat cola. Cinder toffee.

Conclusion: From the clean feeling aroma and the smooth pour I was expecting this to be a tad light in its texture despite the 12.5% ABV. I have seen quite a few imperial stouts from the USA that feel a lot lighter than the abv would suggest.

Well anyway that was stupid of me. This is sticky as heck, gripping like treacle. Odd as the beer doesn’t leave an obvious dark sheen on the glasss as you swirl it, but despite that it clings to your tongue like its life depends on it.

(Maybe it does? Maybe this beer is alive and it realised beyond the throat is a giant pit of acid. Maybe it was sapient and trying to survive. Unlikely though)

Anyway, this starts very much like the chocolate birthday cake and icing style that it deliberately evokes. However over time this gets stickier and stickier, into first treacle sponge and then sticky toffee pudding like character, all drenched in flat cola notes.

Ok, I know that sounds horrible, but it is actually ok. Not great admittedly, but ok. Still, best part of a tenner buys a lot of better than ok stouts, and this costs best part of a tenner is all I am saying.

Still, early on it is a lovely, chocolate cake tasting, slightly bitter cocoa tasting beer. That cocoa especially really helps it not get sickly early on. However as the beer grows that cocoa just can’t compete and this soon becomes sickly, and I mean really sickly.

So, yes this does manage its aim of Birthday Cake the beer at the start, and ends up sticky toffee pudding the stout. Which may be for some people. Apart from that there are slight chalky and gunpowder tea style notes that seem to be trying to rein in the beer and failing, and some intresting cinder toffee at the end.

Even at its stickiest there is still a slightly drier, more standard cake set of notes underneath, but it doesn’t manage to make that the main expression.

So, it is ok, but too sticky by far. That may be making you think “darn this is for me!” and if so, more power to you, but personally I will not be returning to this one

Background: It is surprisingly hard to find information on this beer online, so I’m going to just go with the information on the Beer Bruvs website where I bought it. A blend of imperial stout aged in Blanton Barrels, and imperial milk stout conditioned on birthday cake, frosting, vanilla beans and possibly dynamite?

I presume that last one is a joke.

I presume.

Anyway odd as hell, but sounded like it could be fun and my last encounter with Ingenious was for a similarly odd sounded beer and that was great, so decided to give it a go. From the name I guess they brewed this for their third anniversary of starting? Again very little information I could find online.

Went with a mix of tracks from Run The Jewels :RTJ2 and RTJ4 while drinking. Gave a nice bit of energy to the session.

Ingenious: Smarty Champagne Sherbet (USA: Berliner Weisse: 6.8% ABV)

Visual: Strawberry juice red. No real head, just a handful of bubbles. Some small bubbled carbonation.

Nose: Strawberry jelly babies. Crushed love hearts. Palma violets. Fudge. Seville orange.

Body: Light sherbety mouthfeel and sherbet lemon. Fudge to chocolate fudge. Grapes. Strawberry. Raspberry soft drinks. Crushed love hearts. Sweet white wine. Grape juice. Orange jelly sweets.

Finish: Chocolate fudge. Chocolate orange. Sweet raspberry. Lemon sorbet. Green grapes. Slight funky feel. Palma violets. Red grape juice.

Conclusion: This is nothing like what I expected. Which is partially my fault, with something called Champagne Sherbet I should not be surprised when it has lemon sherbet flavours.

My bad.

What is unexpected is how restrained the Berliner sharpness is. There is a soft, tart, fizzy character but nothing like the acidic pain from my first Berliner Weisse experience. It may help that I don’t have an unknown tooth cavity this time.

Again, my bad.

It is fruity, with the expected strawberry and raspberry notes coming through quasi naturally, but what really sticks out in this is that it feels like some one took a ton of crushed love hearts and dumped them into the beer.

But in a good way.

It results in an odd mix of natural fruit and super artificial sherbet fizz. Then you back it with soft white wine like notes and a bit of yeast funk at the end and you have something that should not at all mesh together, but somehow does.

It has a champagne feel only in the funk in the finish, and the fruit used comes across cleanest in the aroma; In-between the two there is a massive mix of everything that went into this. So, yeah somehow they manage to make drinking crushed sweets through fruit stewed in white wine work. Which is impressive.

It is fun, but unlike a lot of “fun” beers it feels well brewed and almost could even be called balanced. Almost. Lets face it, something that tastes like crushed sweets will never be 100% balanced.

Fun, funky. Fruity and sweet. I need a word that means sweet but begins with f to continue the alliterations. Fructose? Nah that is rubbish. Anyway, if this was a lower abv this would be a perfect drinking in the sun refresher. As is I enjoyed the hell out of it anyway.

Background: Ok this is a (Deep breath) Berliner brewed with champagne yeast and conditioned on raspberry, strawberry, orange, lime and vanilla. Which is a bit of a mouthful. At time of doing the notes initially I was only aware of the strawberry and raspberry, so I am happy I picked up on some of the others as well. This is listed everywhere as “Smarty Champagne Sherbet” but on the can I could initially only see “Champagne Sherbet” and that is from an additional label stuck on it. Anyway, yeah I see it NOW! Go figure. Additionally the label, and most of the internet calls this at 6.8% abv, but if you peel off the label the can calls it as 6.1% ABV. Again, go figure. No canned on date for this one, so not sure how long it has been since it was brewed. As you may have guessed from that, this is another one grabbed from The Beer Bruvs website. Went with Evan Greer’s Spotify Is Surveillance as backing music again. Easy to listen to but politically sharp. I like it.

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