As you may know, Dogfish Head‘s interesting beers are (finally!) beginning to show up this summer in bottles and on tap at various California venues.
One of the first beers they are bringing in is their Palo Santo Marron.
This is a new beer they are making using wood from a South American tree called Palo Santo. They are also aging this beer in tanks made from the same wood.
As you can see, it is a very dark ale. They call it a “Malty Brown Ale”, which is sort of an understatement. They are using several dark roasted malts, some bittering hops, and almost no aroma hops. The idea being aroma hops would detract from any character imparted by the wood.
At 12% ABV, this is a serious beer, but pretty smooth and easy drinking, especially for that alcohol content. Not being familiar with the smell/taste of the wood, I’m not entirely sure what character it imparts, but they say it is somehow related or similar to the African tree which provides Frankincense resin.
In any case, it went well with a stir fry made from leftover grilled steak, shitake mushrooms, and kale.