North Coast Brewing Company Brother Thelonious Belgian Abbey Style Ale
Interesting idea for a beer release. North Coast donates two dollars for every case sold to the Thelonious Monk Institute to support Jazz music. I like it. I am also a huge fan of dark Belgian ales. Seems like a recipe for success. Pours a dark mahogany color with an off-white head. Lots of lacing all over the glass. Aroma is pure chocolate and spice. Very inviting.
Flavor is wonderful. Very complex chocolate and caramel malt flavors with that classic Belgian spiciness floating around. Hoppy flavors and bitterness are there but in the background and subdued. This beer really melts in your mouth if such a thing is possible. Really viscous in your mouth and then lightens up as it warms. Chocolate to caramel to spice. I even get some oaky flavors. Delicious.
This may be a hard one to find in Jersey but I really recommend picking up a bottle if you can. The fact that this supports Jazz music is also a huge plus. The high alcohol percentage (9.3%) will also ensure good aging if you feel so inclined. I doubt I would have the patience for that. This is one complex beer that will hit the spot. Worth every penny.
Final Score: 95% (Deep, Warm, and Complex. Dark Belgian At Its Best.)