Cannon | Reverence Barrel Works
Score: 86/100 - very good
From a 500ml bottle served warm at 14 degrees Celsius into a TeKu glass. No date information on the bottle. The beer comes straight from the brewery - I acquired it through a friend. This will be my first breview from Reverence. Given the style and feedback, my expectations are high.
The beer pours a clear deep copper with no head. No lacing. I suppose that's expected of a big boy such as this. Still...
Medium-strong intensity with sweet-ish balance. The aroma is rich, complex, and enticing. Ample toffee/caramel stands with alcohol-soaked dried fruit, red/black berries, and low molasses. Pleasant oxidized character of sherry and leather. Brown sugar and a hint of woodiness at the back. The dry nose is rich and sweet with notes of caramel, brown sugar, and biscuit. Gorgeous.
Follows the aroma with strong intensity, good balance, and very assertive perceived bitterness. The palate opens up with a sherry-like character, raw sugar, and dried fruit making way for a powerful center where notes of alcohol-soaked raisins, dark caramel, black berries, molasses, brown sugar, and leather converge. The long finish is strong and bitter-ish with notes of boozy raisins, caramel/toffee, sherry, and wood.
Medium body with low carbonation. The mouthfeel is slick and round with strong alcohol warming and a medium-dry finish. No astringency or actual harshness on the palate. High impact.
Reverence Barrel Works' Cannon is a very good beer. Beautiful colour and clarity but there's no head to speak of. Terrific, deep aroma which really encourages you to have a sip. The flavour follows with a lavish character rich in malt. In terms of the mouthfeel, I feel like it lacks charm: a nip of additional carbonation or higher viscosity would give it just that. In its current state it falls a bit flat. Overall, I really enjoy this beer - it's my kind of bevvy with deep flavour and lots of character. At the same time I have to remain realistic: Cannon is a bit of diamond in the rough and it can be improved. I do recommend this to people who enjoy heavy beers and strong flavours. I think this is balanced, but the sweetness may be too much for some people. Considerable alcohol cuts right through it however. Finally, the fact that this comes from Ontario is exciting: it's at the top as one of my favourite local barleywines. My compliments to Reverence.