A Note on This Beer
Direct from Norway, HaandBryggeriet’s Imperial Porter spends several months aging in Aquavit Barrels and gets snapped up by enthusiasts as soon as it hits U.S. soil.
The beer’s notoriously small bottling run and high ratings are two reasons fans compete for its herbal chocolate and roasted fruit flavors. But it’s the Aquavit influence in the hands of HaandBryggeriet’s barrel expertise that makes it a real prize for the cellar.
Considered the best kept secret in Norway, Aquavit is a spirit that first appeared 200 years ago and the word itself translates to “water of life.” Traditionally it’s distilled from grain and then flavored with herbs and spices. In the case of this beer, HaandBryggeriet teases out cardamom, fennel and ripe orange flavors alongside the barrel’s woody complexity. In culmination with the Porter’s deep cocoa, you end up with a smooth and roasty drinking experience that flows over the palate like … well, like water.
The depth of flavor Aquavit barrels pass onto a beer explains why they’re in such precious demand and difficult for breweries to acquire. They also remind us that barrel aged beers come with a story - and the best way to hear it is to taste it.
4.2 on Beer Advocate!
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