Cellaring Beers: Great Divide Espresso Oak Aged Yeti Oak with Coffee Imperial Stout, Denver, Co. At 8 Years From our “Vault”
Date: February 24, 2018
The Story— Great Divide started as a small Denver Brewery in 1994, but has become a nationally recognized brewery of a wide range of fine beers. Their Yeti series has become close to a mega strength flagship of sorts. They clearly had fun with a range of variations on the theme.
This beer was one of the best we tasted in 2012. We set a bottle aside in a group of beers for a charity event that never transpired and unearthed it this winter. Fresh, it tasted of rich cherry dark malt, with clean dark malts and a bitter that was easier to find 7 years ago than today. Chocolate, espresso, and a subtle oak all added breadth.
The Beer—Rich and dark and boozy; somewhat woody with plenty of dark and chocolate malts; Rich holds. Its shows few signs of age and shows some interesting notes that weren’t there before. Most of the espresso is pretty subtle by now– there’s more dark caramel and, of course, some of the bitterness has mellowed as well. Ellie’s notes – yummy mocha Kahlua smooth; the bitter has eased off and old oak imperials rock: this has improved.
It’s a guess, but I think as good as this beer is now, it might have peaked at about 5 years.
Value — Very good to excellent. We paid $7.00 for a 22 ounce bottle — OK, it was seven years ago and all prices have risen sharply, but the range of flavors were exceptional then and just as interesting now.
Values: “fair” is a good beer at an above market price, “good” is worth the money, “very good” is a bargain, and “excellent” is a steal.