Imagine you’re walking in the Scottish highlands. The cool mist dances across your face. The scent of a peat fire hangs in the low clouds and tickles your nose as the strains of distant bagpipes cut through the grayness.
Now forget all of that, because we’re here to talk about beer, you dirty bastard.
While Dirty Bastard is brewed in Michigan, thousands of miles from the region that inspired it, Founders managed to cram all that Scottish imagery into a bottle and create a delicious Scotch-style ale.
The panel loved the appearance of this ruby red brew, which displayed an ample head on first pour. Smell was also judged well, with a strong nose of scotch, black cherry and vanilla.
On taste, Dirty Bastard starts sweet, with a full malty taste with light overtones of maple and a slick, coating mouthfeel. Our panelists were pleasantly surprised to see scotch and cherry tastes quickly develop and happily dominate the beer’s complex character.
The black-cherry-and-scotch pair lingered right through the aftertaste, which split the panelists into two camps. Both generally enjoyed the aftertaste and rated it fairly well. One camp, however, felt the taste faded too quickly, while one found the bittersweet cherry flavor a bit intense.
Drinkability ratings were fairly high. A couple of panelists noted that the intensity of the cherry and scotch could get tiring if you were planning to drink it all night, however most wanted to enjoy another glass…and did.
So as the fog descends upon the rolling Scottish moorlands, the notes of the distant bagpipes return, carried upon brisk southwesterly winds — sorry, I got carried away again.
(Appearance 9.17, Smell 8.33, Taste 24.17, Aftertaste 16.83, Drinkability 24.67)