by Colin McElroy
Fruit beers have never been my thing. I don’t have an innate aversion to fruit and most certainly not to beer, but I have had some past experiences with fruit beers which I might compare to cough syrup. Widmer Brothers Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout does not draw this comparison.
To call this solely a fruit beer would be to overlook so many of it’s other qualities. This beer is a stout at heart, having its roots in Widmer Brothers KGB Russian Imperial Stout. With slight raspberry fruit tartness balanced by a toasty chocolate aroma you get the sense that the brewer really didn’t want this to be categorized as a fruit beer. The addition of Midnight Wheat to the boil adds smoothness and an extra layer of complexity.
The Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout is the second offering from Widmer Brothers recently launched Alchemy Project. Though the beers in the Alchemy series can be consumed immediately, they are designed to develop with age.
While this beer has helped partially mend my fear of fruit beers, I continue to be understandably weary. The toughest thing about trying this beer last night and taking a few bottles home is knowing that I have to (er, should) wait to drink them.
Learn more about this beer from Widmer Brothers brewer, Ben Dobler: Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout. You can find 22-ounce bottles of Raspberry Russian Imperial Stout at your local beer retailers.