There are not too many 20th anniversary celebrations in our day and age. Marriages don’t last. Businesses go bankrupt and dissolve. That’s America. But, every once in a while we get to participate in the pomp and circumstance of a defining moment. This is such a moment.
Dogfish Head Brewery recently celebrated its 20th anniversary and in honor of the momentous occasion they brewed a special beer: Higher Math. It’s “a golden ale brewed with chocolate and sour cherry juice.” After 20 years of hard work and delicious beer (I’m looking at you 90 Minute IPA) this has to be another check mark in their great lineup. Or does it? I’ve been waiting for this one for months. Let’s see how it stacks up.
DOGFISH HEAD HIGHER MATH
Brewer: Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Location: Milton, Delaware
Release: Limited (11/2015)
Price: $9 (one bottle)
Dark red. Cherry/Pomegranate juice. Cloudy. Thin, soft, white, and foamy head.
Loads of tart cherries. Rich, syrupy cherry juice. A good bit of malt.
The cherry-forward nose transitions into a cherry-dominated palate. Tart. Transitions into chocolate covered cherries towards the mid-palate. Chocolate malt powder. Quite powerful as would be expected by the ABV. Thick. Not easy to work your way through it (I shared my bottle with my brother-in-law and it took me well over 30 minutes to work through it).
Medium. I’m left with a dry malty, chocolate-covered cherry note.
Pretty horrid to be honest. I understand it’s a one-off beer. I get that Dogfish Head is celebrating 20 years in business. But, I just don’t get the $9 per bottle price tag (I’ve seen $60 for a 4 pack online) for a golden ale which tastes like tart and boozy cherry juice. This will be my only bottle.
It’s okay. My anticipation has been let down by the final product and the price tag. I expected more from the fine people over at Dogfish Head. I would have much rather seen a unique, risky, wild, and complex IPA from them than this one-note, cherry-bomb of a beer.
79/100 (An Okay Tipple)