Eclipse - Vanilla (2017)
FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
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A Note on This Beer
For the past 12 years, California’s FiftyFifty Brewing has been pumping out extremely limited, highly-rated beers you can only get at their taproom, through an elite club, or through trades.
I’m talking about their barrel-aged Eclipse Imperial Stout series — a series that’s among the most desired beers in craft, on par with Fremont’s B-Bomb or Goose Island’s Bourbon County.
And today’s Eclipse - Vanilla (2017) shows the barrel barons at FiftyFifty at their elegant, sweet-toothed barrel-aged best. With supreme ratings of 4.35 on BeerAdvocate and 4.29 on Untappd, it’s clear that the lucky boozehounds who’ve tried it are all about its bourbon-soaked choco-vanilla milkshake flavors.
Eclipse may be doused in a tipsy 11% ABV, but the sheer smoothness of the real vanilla makes this easier to drink than an actual milkshake. The chocolate character will remind you of a cup of Italian dark roast spiked with Kahlua. The mouthfeel is dense but goes down easy, with hints of honey cake (from actual honey) in the finish. You won’t feel the booze until you feel the red blush on your cheeks.
With the series featured in Esquire Magazine’s “Top Ten Beers You’ll Never Taste,” it goes without saying that these beers are a rarity. Lucky for you, we got a tiny stash of today's vanilla-soaked boozeshake just to share.
4.35 on BeerAdvocate; 4.29 on Untappd