Today I have the newest special release from our very own Brau Brothers Brewing out of the very small town of Lucan, Minnesota. The brothers Brau make a number of delicious brews so if you are unfamiliar I would highly suggest one of their mixed 12-packs which can be purchased at many local retailers for a reasonable sum and are a wonderful introduction to their products. Rainwater Stout was brewed late this summer with some local hops and aged in Madeira Oak for a number of months. Additionally it is the first time they have bottled in 750ml bottles. Brau Brothers are calling this a Very Special Old Dark, or VSOD but who cares about titles, lets see how it tastes! Pours a very dark black hue that is almost completely opaque with only a little bit of light shining through the very rim of the surface. Head is a tight two fingers and of a light creme chocolate color that lasts for a few minutes leaving only a very small ring around the glass indefinitely. Smells strongly of roasted malts, coffee, chocolate,pitted fruit and even gentle nutty esters are present as well as a modest dose of alcohol. Quite nice. Flavor is of a variety of fruits, gentle coffee, roasted malt, caramel, and slightly tangy, almost sour esters. Body is very light and the mouthfeel is quite thin but nicely smooth. While oak aging most likely has contributed to reducing the obviousness of the alcohol in this almost 10% ABV brew I am still trying to determine what else it has influenced other than a very gentle oak character. A nicely roasted Imperial Stout with a very unique flavor profile. A bit less complex and lighter bodied than I expected but unquestionably unique and tasty. If you enjoy unique easy drinking strong stouts and roasted malts this might just be the brew for you. With all of the delicious ales that Brau Brothers have produced I can’t wait to see more experimentation. Give it a shot and ride your bike.