It wasn’t long ago that Parallel 49 Brewing first came to my attention. And after trying their combo pack, which provides a pretty good sampling of what they do, I came to two tentative conclusions. One, the brewers at Parallel 49 tend to experiment with some pretty interesting combinations. And two, the result is really quite good.
But I was decidedly unprepared for some of their latest releases. First, there was the Bad Sweater Milk Stout, which I have yet to try, and their Salty Scot Scotch Ale, which I just finished drinking for the first time. And true to form, this beer is pretty damn experimental, combining caramel and sea salt with a “Wee Heavy”-style scotch ale. And also true to form, the end result was quite pleasing…
Appearance: Dark amber brown, slightly cloudy and good foam retention
Nose: Distinct caramel nose, sugary and sticky sweet
Taste: Light, sweet malts giving way to notes of salt water toffee, viscous and chewy
Aftertaste: Slight tang, giving way to more toffee and touch of smoke
What can I say? As far as Wee Heavies go, this is one oddball of a beer! But its taste, nose, and good mouth feel make it a pleasure to drink. At 7.5 alc/vol, it’s certainly deserving of its basic designation, and the sea salt and caramel are a very nice accompaniment, providing some balance to what would otherwise be a heavy ale.
I am intrigued and kind of frightened to know what they might come out with next. Might I suggest something run of the mill; perhaps a nice, simple pale ale? No fruit, no dairy, and no particular variety of candy? No dice, huh? Ah, do what you like. You’re five for five so far 😉