Origin of Darkness: Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout with Black Truffles

This weekend I found yet another Origin of Darkness beer that’s aged in bourbon barrels, this one brewed with black truffles, and just after I had typed this first line, right after the words “black truffles,” I spilled it.

Everywhere. All over everything.

On my notebook, on my Echo Show, all over the desk, on the white carpet (just after telling my girlfriend how I’d managed to not spill anything on this carpet), and some even got on one of my cameras. It’s amazing none spashed up onto my computer keyboard. There’s some on my wall.

It’s dark and sticky. My first taste was to quickly cover the bottle’s opening with my mouth as a bunch of it began foaming out.

It’s all under control now. At least, it’s all cleaned up except for part of the wall, which I missed. All in all, I only lost about 5 ounces of it, thanks to some quick reflexes that I can only attribute to years of video gaming. And so, I now take the first sip, without panicking, to see how it tastes.

Not great. That’s my first impression. It tastes … earthy, but not in a pleasant way. It tastes like there’s mud in it. Seriously. It tastes like beer mixed with dirt water. Whatever bourbon notes are present are overshadowed by this bitter, filthy taste.

Very disappointing, especially considering how much I loved the last two. I mean, I loved the last one so much I practically swooned.

This is a hard pass for me. I will finish it, because I paid a lot of money for it, and I have a hard time wasting beer — even if it’s not wonderful. But, yuck. I guess the Universe was trying to save me from a bad experience by causing me to spill it.

To sum it up: this one is not Yummy Mojo.

Origin of Darkness: Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout with Vanilla and Coconut

I’ll sum it up for you right here: this is vanilla bourbon beer candy.

So impressed was I with their miso beer, that when I spotted this variation at a store in the Chicago area I snatched it up.

Popping the top I can smell chocolate malts, vanilla, and hints of coconuts. If it didn’t say anything about bourbon, I wouldn’t have noticed it, but being that I know it’s there, I can catch the faint ghost of it if I stick my nose practically inside the bottle.

First sip: oh my heavens. Oh, praise to the goddess Ninkasi. This is a dessert beer to be sure. It’s delicious with a capital “DAH.”

It has the smoothest, richest mouthfeel I have encountered in a beer in a good long while. If I were still searching for “the holy beer” as I used to in my old GroovyBrew beer blog, this would instantly qualify. Wow.

The taste: bourbon and chocolate right up front, hints of coconut highlights, and sweet as a dark milk chocolate bar. No coffee notes in this one. No upwelling of bitterness at all. It’s vanilla bourbon beer candy.

Okay, though, you must know: I like my beers rich, dark, and on the sweet side. I’m not into bitter or ultra-hoppy beers. If you are, then this will probably not be a beer for you.

I like it! And I wish I’d bought more of it. But then again, it was not cheap, and I’m pretty sure drinking an entire bottle is probably the equivalent of eating two loaves of bread and at least three donuts. That is to say, this is exactly what you would want to drink if you needed to pack some pounds onto your frame.

Which is the opposite of what I need to do.

More information about this and other beers from the same series can be found at COLLECTIVEARTSBREWING.COM

Origin of Darkess

I’m drinking the most ludicrous thing I’ve ever heard of: bourbon barrel aged miso beer. Like, miso from miso soup … beer. Insane, right? Ridiculous.

Not a joke. April 1st was yesterday.

This is also not a joke: It’s wonderful. I don’t know how or why miso plays a part in it. I mean, I love miso soup, but I’m not picking up any taste connections here. It must be too subtle for me to suss out. It’s huddled far under the cover of the thrumming warm cello notes of the barrels of bourbon that was this beer’s literal womb.

First sip: dark milk chocolate malt, dark bread, and an almost instant upwelling of rich woody bourbon. And, really good bourbon, too. So warm, so toasty, so fine! But … miso? Not getting it. It must be contributing to the notes somehow, but if it didn’t proclaim right out front that it had something to do with “white miso” I would never have guessed.

There is a lot of alcohol involved. 11.5% per volume, in fact, and I’m feeling it rather than tasting it. But then again … bourbon. It is not a surprise. And this is a heavy dark bottle holding 1 pint and 9 fluid ounces. My dear reader, I will not be driving after drinking this entire bottle.

From the bottle’s label itself:

Origin of Darkness, 2018 Release

The Origin of Darkness project is a collaborative effort with our brewing friends from around the globe. The mission: to infuse “terrior” into premium barrel aged brews by including ingredients that are representative of each brewer’s homeland.

R. Morrow, Brewmaster

It’s imported by The Wild Beer Co. into the good state of Illinois, USA by Collective Arts Stowe, VT USA, and is a product of Canada brewed by Collective Arts, Hamilton, Ontario Canada. Website: COLLECTIVEARTSBREWING.COM

If I were still searching for the “Holy Beer” (as I was back in my beer blogging days) I would definitely have counted this as a holy beer contender and would have rated it high on the scale. This is up there in the best 10 or so beers I’ve ever had, which is why I’m bothering to write this, in 2019, a good 11 years after I gave up beer blogging.

It’s that good.

If you see it at your local connoisseur beer emporium, and you like anything to do with bourbon-barrel aged brews, snag it.