This Double Stout is bottled year-round. I’d like to thank Worthy Brewing for their kind contribution. Aromas resemble fudge, cocoa powder, sweet maple syrup, vinous dark fruits, and oatmeal grains.
The palate introduces itself with a blend of bitter and sweet notes, beginning nice and roasty with hints of chocolate. A sudden onset of hops quickly establishes a classic, herbal character. The middle is soon filled with dark fruits as hops continue to rise into bitterness, reaching toward an appropriate level of 60 IBU’s. A strike of sweet caramel flows into hints of coffee, followed by hops that rise up into a sour note resembling oranges. Malts continue to develop their dark roast, stops just short of burnt, then closes with a touch of oatmeal. The mouthfeel begins creamy, slightly slick with alcohol, holds on with good sustain, then closes with light hop oils that close in pleasant dryness.
I like how the malts and hops attack simultaneously, then things get dark and grainy as it nears closer to the finish. In many ways, I find the flavor closely resembles the aroma. A balanced blend of bitter and sweet hit right on target, then a sour note elevates the body to another level. As for the criticism, I could do with a little less fruit, and a little more roast character. The body load lands just slightly lighter than I would prefer, as I wish it were more dense and creamy. All in all, Dark Muse satisfies my expectations, and I find the balance very agreeable. I recommend it.