I got a sample of Magic Hat's Fall Odd Notion back in September, stuck it in the fridge to chill...and hit the road. Kentucky Bourbon Festival, moving my mother-in-law (came back from that with 18 bottles of Guinness that I stuck in the fridge...in front of the Odd Notion (and there's a Deschutes Jubelale in there, too, I see...later)), WhiskyFest San Francisco...I forgot about it.
So today I get an e-mail from Magic Hat's publicity guy, Dave Obenour. Hey, he says, are you ever gonna drink that stuff? Good publicity guy! Sure, why not? I don't have to go pick up Nora today, I'll have a beer.
It's a "chocolate Belgian stout," and it pours really, really dark with a tenacious dark tan head. The nose is like baker's chocolate: chocolatey, but dry with it, and a hint of malt and graham. Mmmm... That's the taste, only with some fruit to it -- orange, hints of berry, maybe a bit of grape -- and a solid bitterness on the end. The mouthfeel's better than I've had from most Magic Hat beers lately, too: creamy, not quite rich, smooth but not light. Seems to be asking to be used for cooking, too: this would make an excellent stewing beer. I like beers like this for roasting my pork and sauerkraut.
A lot going on here, but not so much that it isn't quite drinkable. Glad you followed up, Dave. I'll recommend this: it's part of the seasonal Night of the Living Dead 12-pack, with the hoppy Roxy Rolles, #9 (which I saw over the weekend in Louisville), and, well, Circus Boy 'hefeweizen.' I'm sure there are people who like Circus Boy that you could serve this to. I'm not one of them. But this Odd Notion stuff is worth it.