Beer Review: DOGFISH HEAD OAK-AGED VANILLA WORLD WIDE STOUT

Beer Review: DOGFISH HEAD OAK-AGED VANILLA WORLD WIDE STOUT

Poured into a snifter, the Dogfish Head Oak-Aged Vanilla World Wide Stout presents itself as a clear brown liquid, transitioning to an inky black hue once settled in the glass. The minimal tan foam with weak head retention is characteristic of barrel-aged stouts, a norm I’ve come to expect from such brews.

Aroma

The initial olfactory experience hints at vanilla, though it leans more towards a starchy resemblance, akin to a sweet potato. However, the intensity of the aroma fails to captivate, leaving a rather lackluster impression.

Taste

With an exorbitant price tag hovering around six times that of a regular beer, one would expect a flavor profile that justifies the cost. Unfortunately, the taste disappoints. Despite experimenting with different glassware, pairing it with crackers and cheeses, and letting it aerate, the beer falls short. The thin and watery consistency defies logic, with the sugar seemingly evaporated, leaving behind a lackluster, over-oaked, and tannic mess. The barrel aging has transformed what was once a promising imperial stout into a diluted concoction, devoid of the body that should accompany a beer of this caliber. The absence of balance results in harsh barrel flavors reminiscent of mildew and wet earth, while an acrid acidity in the finish can be attributed to the roasted malt and barley additions that lack the necessary sugar counterbalance. It’s a sipper, but each sip reinforces the disappointing journey into a watery, acrid abyss.

Mouthfeel

The mouthfeel of this Oak-Aged Vanilla World Wide Stout further compounds its shortcomings. The thinness of the beer, stripped of its sugar content and laden with harsh barrel notes, fails to provide the rich, full-bodied experience one anticipates from an imperial stout. The excessive alcohol content only exacerbates the issue, leaving behind an unwelcome watery texture.

Overall

In the grand scheme of imperial stouts, the Dogfish Head Oak-Aged Vanilla World Wide Stout falls short of expectations. Despite its lofty alcohol content, the beer lacks the substance and complexity needed to justify its premium price. The promise of an oak-aged variant with added vanilla is overshadowed by a thin, watery consistency and overpowering tannic flavors. This rendition transforms what was once a groundbreaking craft beer into a regrettable journey into mediocrity. While the Dogfish Head brand has a history of pushing boundaries, this particular offering fails to leave a lasting impression, ultimately delivering an underwhelming experience that doesn’t align with its hefty price tag.