Kafkaesque by Martin House Brewing Taste Test

Kafkaesque by Martin House Brewing Taste Test

Kafkaesque by Martin House Brewing Taste Test

Kafkaesque by Martin House Brewing Taste Test

I snagged some of this beer during my last trip to the Total Wine off 75 and Park Lane in Dallas.  I was pretty happy to see this bad boy staring back at me in all it’s canny glory.

As you can see in the picture, Kafkaesque is an “Imperial Smoked Black Rye Oaked Raspberry IPA.”  That is the most adjectives I have ever seen thrown at one beer can.

Here is the Martin House description of Kafkaesque:

“Kafkaesque is defined thusly:

1. Marked by a senseless, disorienting, often menacing complexity.
2. Marked by surreal distortion and often a sense of impending danger.
We took the definition of Kafkaesque seriously when we created this beer.  Our brewers viewed it as a challenge to create a beer so complex and bizarre that it would make Franz himself proud.  We started with an Imperial IPA, then we transformed it into a rye IPA with a menacing portion of rye malt.  Then, we made it disorientingly black with some heavily roasted malts.  We needed more complexity, so we made it surreally smoky with cherry-wood smoked malts.  Lastly, we added 300 lbs of raspberries for fruitiness, and everybody knows you can’t have a complex beer without wood, so we let sit on toasted American oak.  We know that you will find this Imperial Smoked Black Rye Oaked Raspberry IPA to be very Kafkaesque.”

In summary, this beer is all of the things.  All of them.

Now for the taste test:

Kafkaesque pours out very dark and hazy brown with a head of tan foam.  It looks like some of the dark barrel aged beers that I have seen.

Kafkaesque in Glass

Kafkaesque in Glass

It smells more like an IPA than I was expecting.  I got plenty of hops on the nose, and the raspberry definitely made itself known, as well.

The smell also has some smokeyness on the end that blends well with a hint of malt sweetness.

The complexity of this beer is obvious right away.

My first sip was nothing like the smell at all.  I got almost all smokey dark malt flavors at first.  It was almost like bitter coffee.

Not shockingly though, this beer evolves as you drink, so you find yourself running through all of the descriptors on the label as you drink.

At first the raspberry stayed mostly on the finish for me, but as I drink more, it came out more and more.  I eventually decided that this beer has a element of raspberry chocolate if you’ve ever had something like that.

The hops are present in the beer, but they aren’t in the forefront of the flavor.

Every sip of this beer is a little different than the last one, and I’m not exaggerating when I say that.  Martin House was trying to come up with basically the most complex beer ever, and as far as I’m concerned, they did it.  Mission accomplished.

I still see some of this beer on tap at some of the DFW growler fill spots, so hurry out and grab some before they run out.  You don’t want to miss out on this “existential” offering.

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