Tonight I had Oakspire. This is a collaboration between New Belgium and Four Roses Bourbon. I’ll do an audio review on this one on the podcast soon. Unlike most barrel aged beers that are popular, Oakspire is not a stout. This is a 9% Strong Ale that has been around since 1998. Initially, this was a collab with Knob Creek and now New Belgium works with Four Roses. Instead of aging the beer in whole bourbon barrels, Oakspire uses a custom built spire that has plenty of grooves in it to marry the beer to the wood. The result is an ale that has a subtle barrel aged flavor but nothing like many stouts that are out there.
Oakspire has a great color, nice reddish brown with this. New Belgium uses Pale, Munich, Caramel, Rye, and Roasted Barley in the grain bill. The aroma has some biscotti notes to it. The taste is very good, I get sweetness up front followed by the woodsy bourbon notes in the middle with a nice finish. They use Sabro and Nugget hops and this has 27 IBU, personally I didn’t pick up any of the hop notes here. This warms you up more than a usual 9% ABV beer does which I’m not complaining about one bit!
Oakspire retails for $14.99 a 6 pack of 12 oz bottles. If you go into this thinking this is going to be a barrel aged stout you might be disappointed, but taking this by itself, it’s a nice beer and worth the price. This is not a year round release so if you happen to see this out near you, put it in the cart!