Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The original review and the birth of a website - Palo Santo Marron

Today marks the 1st anniversary of this site, at least in a way.  It wasn't called Dunerbrew yet at the time, but the post on Sept 25th was the beginning of ongoing daily posts, all within the themes of craft beer and brewing.  I had poked around with blogs in the past, posting something here or there, but never with any real focus or consistency.  Then one day I awoke.  "I could blog about beer."  After all, I was obsessed with my new hobby still, and it was just around the 1 year anniversary of my first home brewed beer too.  After a year of homebrewing, I hadn't given up or lost enthusiasm for the hobby like with most of my other prior hobbies.  In fact, I maintained a growing fascination with it.  You could say I was "hopsessed."

Several hundred posts later, this site is still active, along with the Facebook Page, Instagram and Twitter accounts.  And now this site is entering into it's second year.  Sing the song and blow out the candles!

What will happen this year?  Where will this take us?

The unofficial kickoff to this site wasn't really even a blog posted here.  Rather, it was a review I wrote that was posted on a friend's blog,  There was something about that process which kick-started the creative juices, allowing for an ongoing dedicated effort to this blog, resulting in post after post.

And now, for the first time on this site (drum-roll please), here is that original review in it's entirety.

Palo Santo Marron

This afternoon, I decided to open up a Palo Santo Marron, by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, based in  Milton, DE.  I'll be honest, I'm halfway through and ready for a nap, but not because it's boring.  It is anything but boring.  The 12% ABV and the rich full flavor of this “brown ale” has slowed me down.  Hey, can you toss me a pillow please?

This is an intense beer.  Labeled as a brown ale, the Palo Santo Marron is much much more.   Deep brown to black in color with a creamy espresso-like head, this beer packs in the flavor, malty with a liqueur (maybe brandy) bite, and the woody flavor from aging.  This beer has a mellow mouth feel and the flavors linger on the tongue and lips.  The alcohol is concealed well in all the flavor.  You feel the alcohol quicker than you taste it. 

The label on the side brags about the 10,000 gallon wooden vessel created just for this beer, and tends to sum up this beer better than I could anyway.

The Palo Santo tree is found in South America (Paraguay), and Palo Santo is Spanish for holy tree.  A Google search will reveal photos of the not-so-impressive looking tree, but the flavor is good, and oak aging would be too mainstream for Dogfish.  Like other wood aged beers, the flavor is a definite part of the beer, dominant really only at the finish. 

This is a beer to drink slowly and enjoy.  On some weekend evenings, when I sit around the house tweeting while the TV or music are on in the background, I enjoy the Palo Santo Marron as the last beer.  And when it's complete I'm ready for a nice night of rest.

Darren U. (Galileo's Bane), Sept 23, 2012

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