At last, the final movement of Holst's The Planets as beer-sonified by Bell's. A little light and lilting in the opening passages. I'd better open the bottle before things really get going.
Bell's Neptune the Mystic.
Alc. 9% by Vol.
Solid blackness, with a slim, cocoa-tinged head.
Aroma starts out rich and fruity, dates, figs, plum and peppers, with sweetness replaced by an increasing heat. Interesting to say the least. What else is in here? Sweetness and spice and now turning dry, showing alcohol. Ever-evolving aromas.
Let's drink it down already, while the music seems more mysterious and magical. Just listening to it, I feel like I'm floating past the big blue planet.
In the mouth, it's rich and malty, chocolate and espresso notes on the palate. Heat starts to stir things up a bit, for I know there are peppers involved here, somewhere. Full-bodied, good and thick, but not undrinkable. Lots of flavors playing around in this, some molasses with the peppery heat trickling in.
From the front: "Ale brewed with black pepper, hickory bark, dandelion root, spices, molasses, and maple syrup with cayenne peppers, star anise, raisins and dates added. " Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble. Everything but eye of newt or wing of bat.
But it works. It's never too everything. There's good balance here. The hotter elements don't dominate, and the others have their time to shine, too. Tasty. Otherworldly. It's a mystic trip, man.