Rum Cask – Innis & Gunn (Edinburgh, Scotland)

TL:DR – “tiresome I&G sweetness after 1 glass, toffee barley malt with a touch of oak. Average.”

Rum Cask (beer aged in rum barrels) – Innis & Gunn, 7.4% ABV, 1 pt 9.4 fl.oz., (Edinburgh, Scotland)

on the back label:

“Since discovering the secrets and joys of maturing beer in oak barrels we have been on a journey of further discovery, which has lead us to some pretty incredible taste experiences. Rum Cask is one of our firm favourites! A slow maturation using American oak and rum infused oak has imparted this beer with a delicious warming character that is bursting with fruit and lively spiciness.”

  • Style: (rum barrel aged) English Strong Ale
  • Taste: cloying sweet toffee grainy-ricey barley malt
  • Where I got it : 16th St. Liquor / W. Vancouver
  • How much: $8 CAD (after 10% off) – 1 pt. 9.4 fl.oz., August 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: No
  • Recommended: no
  • What made an impression: dat I&G sweetness (excessive)

Visual: (cellared for 6 years). Pours translucent root beer brown with a smallish fine ringed retention, lots of steady micro fine streams.

Nose: caramelized barley malt (lvl-4)-pungency

Attack: crisp, incoming heavy sweetness

Mid-palate: brown sugar barley malt, soda-like cloying (lvl-7-sweetness), grainy-ricey rum, oaked caramel

Finish: molasses exhale, dry alcoholic

Summary: That trademark I&G sweetness shows up again in this one, overshadowing the subtle oak infusion in the toffee barley malt. Two-note at best, there’s not much this beer offers past one glass. Just average. Slightly higher ABV than their “Rum Aged” variation.

Polaris Julebryg – Nanoq Beer Co. (Quqortoq, Greenland)

Polaris Julebryg – Nanoq Beer Company (dead homepage), 6.0% ABV, 50 cl., (Quqortoq, Greenland)

on the back label in Danish:

“Denne julebryg fra Grønland er opnævnt efter Polaris, Nordstjernen. Polaris har altid været vores og julemandens ledestjerne. Denne julebryg dufter og smager af julens sødme og er sammensat af de bedste råvarer, det reneste grønlandske vand – og tilsat indlandsis samt krydderier, som sammen vækker den rigtige julestemning i os alle. ”

(google translation):

This Christmas break from Greenland is established after Polaris, Nordstjernen. Polaris has always been our leader and Santa’s leader. This Christmas wreath smells and tastes of Christmas sweetness and is made up of the finest raw materials, the cleanest Greenlandic water – and added icecream and spices that together bring the true Christmas atmosphere together.

  • ]
  • Style: English Strong Ale
  • Taste:
  • Where I got it : 16th St Liquor / W. Vancouver
  • How much: $7 CAD (after 10% off) – 50 cl., September 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: no

Visual: (cellared for 5 years). Pours clear copper brown with no real head, a thin haze on top, not much activity.

Nose: sweet toffee barley malt (lvl-6)-pungency

Attack: crisp, sweet malt impression

Mid-palate: (lvl-4-sweetness), toffee barley malt, mild metallic tang

Finish: barley malt exhale

Summary: An easy drinking, no frills beer. Not terribly exciting, but no major flaws either, except for the dull appearance.

Innis & Gunn Rum Finish – 6.8% ABV (Scotland)

Innis & Gunn Rum Finish – matured for 57 days, 6.8% ABV, 33 cl., (Edinburgh, Scotland)

on the back label:

“This ruby red beer is matured over the finest rum-infused American Oak heartwood resulting in a beer with delicious warming character that is bursting with fruit and lively spiciness. These vibrant flavours perfectly balance the beer’s toffee-malt backbone making it an ideal accompaniment to game meats like venison or duck. It is sublime with mature cheeses served with good chutneys and relishes.”


  • Style: (barrel-aged – American Oak Rum cask) English Strong Ale
  • Taste: Dense overly sweet toffee’d barley malt brown sugar-molasses
  • Where I got it : BC Liquor Stores
  • How much: $16 CAD – 4 x 330 ml., November 2014
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: fabulous

Visual: Pours clear mahogany brown without a significant lasting head, ringed retention with a small island, countable singular sporadic streams.

Nose: sugary thick toffee’d liquid barley malt (lvl-7)-pungency

Attack: crisp, incoming densely sweet malts

Mid-palate: heavy (lvl-7-sweetness), brown sugar-molasses, toffee’d liquid malted barley

Finish: residual malted sugars

Summary: I usually enjoy I&G brews but this one tasted awfully plain, short, and uninspiring. The toffee profile just becomes overly heavy with the addition of the rum barrel.