One Big Bottle

The brews we're sipping, one by one.

One Big Bottle: Odell Saboteur Brett Barrel Brown Ale

Editor's Note: So many beers, so little time. One Big Bottle will spotlight the brews we're sipping.

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[Photograph: Maggie Hoffman]

I've been holding onto this bottle from Odell Brewing Company quite a while now, but it certainly hasn't suffered. This double brown ale was aged in the barrels that Odell uses for their Woodcut series, and dosed with Brettanomyces for secondary fermentation. It's 10% alcohol, but quite smooth and creamy. (Though friends who tasted it without cellaring say it was never very hot.)

I'd heard warnings that this savory beer tasted like a cup of beef stew, but I found the beefy qualities of this brew mellow, mingling with hints of chocolate, hoisin sauce, and barbecue sauce, with sour cream and chocolate milk thrown in for good measure.

The Brett adds some cherry pie character to this beer, but it's not a puckeringly sour brew. Instead, it reminded us a little of Captain Lawrence's Smoke from The Oak (wine barrel version). Serve with pastrami sandwiches or barbecue ribs.

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