Cameron’s Deviator Doppelbock – Bourbon Barrel Aged

Reviewed by on April 3, 2015 in Spring Guide

The Details

  • Brewery: Cameron's Brewing Co.

  • Origin: Oakville, ON, CA

  • Rated On: April 3, 2015

  • Best Before: N/A

  • ABV: 8.6%

  • Ideal Temperature: cool to cellar temperature

  • Style: Doppelbock

  • Rating: GOOD !

The Review

More spring-time brew (this time it has spent 6 months in some barrels from Bourbon County) from metro Toronto’s Cameron’s Brewing, and as it’s still snowing outside around here in April – good thing about this one’s er, warmth, then, eh?  Also, an enjoyable take on the ‘-ator’ terminology for the doppelbock style.

This 650ml bottle pours a clear, I think, dark orange-brick brown colour, with four fingers of puffy, finely foamy, and damned-near creamy beige head, which leaves some broad drooping flag lace around the glass as it very slowly abates.

It smells of sharp Bourbon barrel notes – astringent toasted wooden staves, boozy vanilla, spicy rye and gritty corn – over a grainy pale malt, dry oily nuttiness, buttery toffee, raisin Baba cake, a touch of over-sugared coffee, and faint earthy, weedy hops. The taste is more malty up front – big boozy fruitcake, port wine, a stocky pale graininess, toffee-ensconced salty nuts, reduced brown sugar, with a sort of lessening Bourbon character in the warm vanilla, besotted oaken wood, and muddled rye maltiness. The carbonation is pretty sedate, just an initially hollow frothiness, the body surprisingly on the weak side of medium weight, and smooth in a tamped down, restricted sort of manner. It finishes well off-dry, the Bourbon-tinted fruity caramelized malt still up for it, but you can see the cracks in its demeanor imminently forming.

A stand-up brew, to be sure, with lots going on from the Kentucky-sourced barrel, and everything a good doppelbock should exhibit underneath, but somehow I’m starting to suspect certain diminishing returns from the effect of the wood, things I’ve seen before – in the vein of the classic Thinner story, i.e. the more I drink this, the more I feel the wood cutting into the very body and soul of the good and hearty central nature of the base beer.

Brady White

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