Ninkasi Devil Went Down to Oregon Imperial Dark Rye Beer: Brewed in Eugene, Oregon in collaboration with Devil’s Backbone Brewing in Virginia, this beer was brewed to a strength of 7.2% abv with 72 IBUs worth of Chinook, Simcoe, Mt Hood, Tettnang and Willamette hops. It was fermented with an Altbier yeast and matured cooler than normal, which changes the flavour slightly and they used a combo of pilsner and 2 row malts with two different kinds of wheat and of course rye to give this beer a unique malt backbone.
Aroma and Appearance: This beer pours a dark brown amber colour with two fingers of off white foam and lots of small bubbles. Its aroma is rye bread, some mango and tangerine fruit, dried plums, dates and lots of earth.
Flavour: On the tip of the tongue there’s a touch of sweet honey with dried plums and rye bread to round it out. In the middle it’s a blast of toffee and fruit leather followed by sweet candied nuts, dates and a floral spicy tangerine finish that brings out a smooth texture with a tiny crisp bitter bite at the very end.
Overall Impression: Rye seems to be the new hop these days and lots of breweries are making rye this and rye that, however this one is near the top of the rye beers and worth a pick up. So many are over hopped, to the point where they fight the flavour whereas this is perfectly balanced against the malt profile and is a unique offering.
Rating: This was an 8.5/10, excellent incorporation of rye in a beer.
Food Pairing: Rye beers need meat, lots of it. Pulled pork or pulled beef would make a happy pairing with this beer.
And basically, the entire time while drinking this beer it’s hard not to sing this song over and over in your head so here you go!