Every year, Avery Brewing Company of Boulder, Colorado releases a new and wonderful beer for its fans to enjoy. They name the beer after the anniversary of the brewery’s opening. So, since they’ve been around for 14 years now, this year’s edition can be found under the moniker of Avery Fourteen. And despite the fact that the beers are different each year, one thing always remains the same: these are big, bold, and delicious efforts with a lot of body and a serious alcohol kick.
Such is the case with Avery Fourteen. Here’s some information from Avery on the beer:
Dark, Dry Hopped Ale
Hop Variety: Styrian Goldings
Malt Variety: Numerous
OG: 1.089 Alcohol By Volume: 9.46 IBU's: 60
Color: Dark Ruby/Chocolate
But more importantly, what do I think about Fourteen?
Avery Fourteen pours to a dark reddish brown color with a thick creamy tan head formation and a tempting nose of dark coffeeish malt and spicy hops. A very thick layer of Brussels lace clings to the sides of my glass as the liquid descends. And then the sip. This is a thick and viscous kind of beer, and the texture matches perfectly the dark malty flavors that immediately seize the palate. Sweet molasses, toasted nuts, roasty coffee, bittersweet chocolate, raisin and prune.
The entire affair is permeated by herbal hop aroma from the dry hopping. But in the finish, the hops emerge more fully with a drying bitterness. Not an assertive one mind you, as they’re balanced out by all that malt. But what you end up with here is delightful dark ale balanced with drying hops and alcohol warmth (this is a big one at 9.46% by volume).
Style? It’s too big to be an American Brown, as much as the dark roasty malts and herbal, bitter hops suggest it might be. It’s not a stout. It’s…, well your guess is as good as mine, but it’s a beer I would say is not easy to peg into any particular slot. Maybe a big double IPA with dark malts thrown in is a good estimation.
Avery Fourteen is sold in 22 ounce bomber bottles for about six bucks. Although it was brewed in May of 2007 and I drank it in January of 2008, no worries. This one is big enough to handle a little aging.
I like dark malty-hoppy ales like this, and it fits in nicely with beers like Boss Cox Double Dark IPA as a style that I think should be done more often. So don’t pass up on Avery Fourteen, no matter what you do. Because a beer like this only comes around oh, once a year or so.
And remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.
*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.