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Goodwood Brewing | Sting Like a Beer

sting like a beer
Jereme Zimmerman

Kentucky’s Goodwood Brewing has a habit of brewing beers that are touched with wood at some point during the process. Sting Like a Beer spends quite a bit of time lingering in a brandy barrel before we get a chance to taste it. And boy is it worth the wait.

Sting Like A Beer, a tribute to boxing legend and Louisville, Kentucky, native Muhammad Ali, is brewed with locally sourced honey and aged in brandy barrels using the solera method. This means that various aged honey Ales are combined over several years of brewing. Each batch of Sting Like A Beer contains a bit of the previous batch, resulting in unique flavors throughout each stage of the process.

Sting Like a Beer pours dark amber with a foamy head that dissipates somewhat as it rests in the glass.

With an ABV of 8.7% and IBU of 33, it should be savored slowly to fully appreciate its complexities. On the initial pour, it foams up a bit but then rests in the glass with a light head of foam and laces nicely as the glass empties. The alcohol level, bitterness and sweetness don’t stand out, likely due to the time spent mellowing in brandy barrels. It feels deceptively light, but the warming alcohol and complex combinations of toffee, vanilla, brandy, dark fruit, honey nose and mild nuttiness float like a butterfly across the palate.

Not a beer meant for downing and reaching for another, Sting Like a Beer, like any fine work of art, is meant to be pondered upon to fully appreciate its subtleties. We recommend pondering over a rich, meaty meal, or perhaps with dessert.

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