Jolly Roger

A few months ago I brewed a clone of Maritime’s Jolly Roger Christmas Ale, my favorite Christmas beer. This year’s version was just released and I got a 6-pack just as the keg of my cloned version of it ran out.

Here’s the two:
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The one on the left is the real thing and mine is on the right. This was literally the last of the keg, a half-pint was all that was left after CHUGfest, a local homebrew club’s 1st annual beer festival, where I served it. Because it’s the bottom of the keg, it’s cloudier than normal and clearly cloudier than the original. But the taste was very close! Mine has a more pronounced hop aroma and flavor, I think I just added a bit too much hops in the boil and dry-hopped. I think if I tone down the hops a bit, I wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between the two.

For lunch today, Gay and I went to Maritime’s (new) Jolly Roger taproom for more of the real thing, but on tap instead of in the bottle. I found out yesterday afternoon that last night they were serving 2012’s Jolly Roger, 2010’s Jolly Roger, Jolly Roger aged in a rum barrel (appropriate for the pirate theme) and Jolly Roger aged with cherries in a brandy barrel. It was too short a notice for me to get there last night, but they still had them on tap today so we got a sampler and I had a full pint of 2012’s version.

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The keg version is more hoppy than the bottled version but still not as hoppy as mine. The 2010 aged well and tastes more sweet, towards a barleywine. The rum barrel version was slightly more sweet but didn’t have the expected oak flavor and the cherry/brandy version was similar but had a little bit of a tart taste. All were very good. Lunch was good too.

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