I’ve made no secret on this blog that Pirate Bomb! is probably my favorite beer, so of course I was excited to try a new rum barrel aged Prairie offering. While not the biggest fan of Okie, I am always down to try something rum barrel aged.
Company: Prairie Artisan Ales
Location: Tulsa, OK
Style/Description: Imperial Brown Ale Aged In Rum Barrels
Price: $8.99 per 12 oz bottle
Appearance: Deep opaque ruby pour, light head and sticky clinging lace.
Nose: Boozy caramel aroma, some oaky barrel and a bit of sweet rum too.
Taste: Starts off aggressively boozy, very sweet, with plenty of oaky barrel character. Caramel and brown sugar, vanilla and toffee, with hints of rum and butterscotch. Some dark fruit notes come in as prunes and figs. I detect some roasted espresso and coffee notes, adding a bit of bitterness to attempt to balance the sweetness. Not sure what the difference is between a 12.6% imperial brown ale and a barely wine, but I wouldn’t be able to tell the difference in a blind test. As it warms and opens up the booze and barrel character mellow some, but continue to dominate.
Finish: Sticky sweet finish, with a pleasant alcohol burn on the way down. Hints of the prunes linger on the palate.
Overall: I enjoyed the original 750ml release of Okie quite a bit, but have been a little more lukewarm on the subsequent releases. Pirate Bomb! is exceptional, so I had high hopes that a little rum barrel aging would improve the original recipe. It did I would say, the Pirate version definitely being superior to the non-barrel aged recipe. A little hot right now and very sweet, but a bit of age should continue to mellow those out.