12oz bottle served in a snifter.
Preamble: When we moved from Ohio to San Diego last September, there was the question of what to do with all the beers I'd been aging. Some, I gave away to fellow beer pals, others I just couldn't part with, thus 120-odd bottles made the 2,300 mile journey with us to the west coast.
Bell's Saturn The Bringer Of Old Age was one of them - actually, two as I'd managed to snag two of them when Bell's released it. Saturn was one of a series of seven beer styles that Michigan-based Bell's released over 12-months. The seven bottle series celebrated Gustav Holst's seven-movement The Planets suite. I grew up near Cheltenham and Holst's splendid house off Pittville Park was always a visit during the summer months.
Saturn The Bringer Of Old Age was an 11.5% Barley Wine aged in Bourbon barrels. You couldn't miss the hefty bourbon nose which gave way to a rich, silky smooth body of caramel, horse chestnuts, Christmas Pudding, dark fruit (especially dates) and soft bourbon notes. Cinnamon and Dundee marmalade also found their way into the mix, with a touch of aniseed joining a reprise of caramel, dates and bourbon in the long and lingering finish.
This was a very special, mellow Barley Wine, which went down well with an aged Cheddar Cheese and Carr's Table Water Crackers.
We'll see how the second bottle compares in about six-months.