Otto Ale – Victory Brewing Company
This abbey dubbel/rauchbier hybrid from Pennsylvania-based Victory Brewing Company pours a date-like ruby brown with a tight, off-white head. The strong and distinctive nose offers plenty of wood smoke and cured and dried meats, along with some coy touches of dried fruit and airy grass. Smoke and cured meats also dominate the palette, mostly in the vein of pepperoni and salami, and the first swallow offers a nice bite if you like smoky beers. Its abbey influences are revealed with a healthy dose of dates and juicy raisins on the aftertaste, preventing the smokiness from overwhelming the tongue. Otto has a nice mix of sweet, smoky, and savory flavors and an unimposing mouthfeel, but adjust your ratings accordingly depending on your preference for smoked brown beers.