Widmer Kill Devil Brown Ale

The label says Spring 2012 and I might be more excited about this beer than I am about the Spring season itself.

American Brown Ales should be big on chocolate, caramel, and well-roasted malts, creating a medium to high viscosity sweet body, balanced out by some nice hop bitterness. Gentle aroma and flavor hops can be used by professionals of balance, but these can often muddle what should be a clear malt showcase. Well, that's what I like to see anyway. Laurelwood Brewing's Hooligan Brown Ale is a great example of an American Brown, and lucky for us, you can find it year round here in Portland.

I stumbled across this recently approved label for Widmer Brothers' Kill Devil Brown in the Brothers' Reserve Series. There are a few things on the label that have the potential to make this beer one of the best American Brown Ales around:

  • It's imperial, weighing in at a lofty 9.5%: A huge beer, great for aging
  • Aged in rum barrels: Lots of wood and rum sweetness
  • Brewed with molasses: Great dark caramel sweetness
  • Brewed with palm sugar: More caramel and maybe some butterscotch

The more I read and think about this beer, the more excited I get. It has the potential of attaining greatness. If this beer turns out to be as bold as the label suggests, you'll see more posts about this beer as I crack one open every year for the next several years. Prost! More from the label:

Kill Devil Brown Ale

  • 90% ale brewed with palm sugar and molasses and aged in rum barrels and 10% ale
  • 9.5 % ABV
  • 22 FL OZ.

These are one-of-a-kind beers made for enthusiastic beer lovers. Each run is limited and personally crafted by some of the most enthusiastic beer lovers around.

Sweet Barbados and blackstrap molasses provide touches of toasted sugar, black licorice, and blackened toffee to this brown ale while the palm sugars invite notes of subtle sweetness. Conditioned in Puerto Rican rum barrels, the vanilla and oak flavors and aromas integrate with the Calypso hop's soft tropical and stone fruit aromas.