Billed as a Belgian style dark ale, this beer from 21st Amendment Brewery in San Francisco, CA, is dark and spicy while still retaining the traditional Belgian style. Brewed with a blend of traditional malts and hops, flavored with candi sugar, cinnamon and vanilla bean, then aged on a bed of dried figs and oak chips, this beer is an excellent example of new world meets old school.

Poured from a 12 oz can into my tulip glass, this beer is dark and hazy. I was actually surprised at the lack of clarity in this commercially produced beer, but appearance aside, it is excellent. On the nose you get great flavors of molasses, brown sugar, vanilla, dates, cherries, bananas, and chocolate. On the tongue the flavors are even better, with complex fig, vanilla, malt and wood flavors being expertly balanced by the hops and belgian yeast strain. And despite the 8.3% abv of the beer, the alcohol remains muted as it should be. Overall, I highly recommend this beer, especially if you are a fan of belgian style ales, but are looking for something a little different. Cheers!