Hell’s Half Acre Iron Joe by Rahr & Sons Brewing Co Taste Test

Hell’s Half Acre Iron Joe by Rahr & Sons Brewing Co Taste Test

Hell's Half Acre Iron Joe by Rahr & Sons Brewing Co

Hell’s Half Acre Iron Joe by Rahr & Sons Brewing Co Taste Test

This beer basically jumped off the shelf at me on my last trip to Total Wine.  I recently had the Oak Cliff Coffee Ale by Deep Ellum and really enjoyed it, so I was excited to see this coffee infused offering from Rahr.

This one is brewed a little differently from Deep Ellum’s Coffee Ale, though.  As I understand it, this beer is made every year with a few tweaks in the formula.  Originally, Garold LaRue from Avoca Coffee formulated a special coffee extract for this beer every year, so this is coffee extract compared to cold brewed cofffee from Oak Cliff Coffee Roasters for the Deep Ellum Offering.

The current batch of Iron Joe is made from locally brewed Noir Coffee from Avoca, so I guess they have ditched the extract method.

This beer starts off as the Rahr early spring seasonal Iron Thistle Strong Scotch Ale (which is pretty good in it’s own right), the Avoca coffee is added, and then it’s barrel aged for 3 months in oak barrels.

The ABV stays at 8%, but pretty much everything else about Iron Joe changes compared to Iron Thistle.

Hell's Half Acre Iron Joe in Glass

Hell’s Half Acre Iron Joe in Glass

I think it’s a result of the coffee and the barrel aging, but Iron Joe pours out brown and super hazy.  It basically looks like a brown unfiltered wheat beer.

There is a strong head on the pour, and the foam is pretty light in color.

The first thing that hits you in the aroma is coffee, which is no surprise.  It kind of smells like an iced coffee with some of the malts from the ale coming through.

I have to admit that I didn’t spend a ton of time smelling this beer because I couldn’t wait to try it.  It’s just so unique.

The flavor of Iron Joe follows the smell with a strong coffee taste.  That definitely dominates the beer, but it gives way to a really great flavor profile as you drink.

This beer is strong and smooth with some bitterness.  I think that the barrel aging gives Iron Joe an almost dry mouth feel like a dry wine.

There is a flavor that emerges that I was really not expecting based on Iron Thistle and coffee, but as you drink a sour flavor starts to come through.  It’s almost like sour cherries.

Iron Joe Bottle

Iron Joe Bottle

This beer is super mellow like an aged wine.  I’ll be looking for some more barrel aged beers after trying this one.

The last flavor that I noticed from Iron Joe was some chocolate notes coming through.  They blend with the coffee flavor to almost give the beer a slight mocha flavor.

Hell’s Half Acre Iron Joe is a really unique and complex beer, and I would highly recommend grabbing one if you see it around.  I would also recommend that you sit back and take you time with this one.  There is so much to this beer that is worth savoring.  It’s another beer that I would consider a beer adventure.

Thanks for the read.  Follow us on Twitter @DFWBrews and please comment below or email me at DFWBrews@gmail.com

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