Brewery: Victory Brewing Company
Beer: Earth & Flame
Style: Scotch Ale/Wee Heavy
Character: Collaboration brew with Earth-Bread+Brewery, aged 6 months in Heaven Hill used bourbon barrels
Ratings at time of Review: BA: 91 | RB: 98
Metal Connection: DragonForce – Through the Fire and Flames
BeerMetalDude Rating: 4.25/5
Victory Brewing Company from Pennsylvania is no stranger to these parts. Their beers have been available for purchase for several years here in San Antonio. According to my Untappd check-ins, I have had near 40 different beers from this brewery up to now. Their IPA, Hop Devil is a beer I have several times but I have not reviewed that one yet. Earth & Flame is only the second Victory beer to appear on this site so far. The first one being their Tripel, White Monkey, which I reviewed during the first months of the website’s existence.
When I saw this beer at the local store, I immediately picked it up once I saw bourbon barrel-aged Smoked Scotch Ale. The label really popped out to me. The yellow and black layered on top of the red background really stood out. The overall artwork has a very tribal-esque feeling to it. Very tattoo like. The yellow really stands out on this red background, making this bottle pop right off the shelf. Great use of colors!
Appropriately poured into a Victory Brewing Co. goblet glass, this Wee Heavy had an appearance that was thick, and opaque. The color was caramel brown, topped with a khaki colored head that was about half an inch thick, but it disappeared quickly, leaving no lacing at all down the glass.
The aroma was malt heavy with a strong caramel, and toffee scent hitting the nose first. There was some traces of nuts, oak wood, bourbon, toasted coconut, some mild herbal and floral hops, and earthiness. This one had a nice sweet sugar candy smell that lingered a bit along with the oak wood, caramel, and bourbon booze.
The taste was similar to the aroma, with all the same characters showing their presence in the flavor of this beer. Again the caramel and toffee showed up first, followed by a complex mixture of oak wood, nuts, toasted coconut, bourbon sweetness, rock candy sugar, earthiness, and some herbal and floral notes. The aftertaste is sweet like caramel candy, and a wood flavor with a lingering boozy burn.
The body is a bit heavier than medium with a slick, syrupy mouthfeel. The finish is big, bold, and strong with a dry feeling, and a boozy heat.
So many highly rated beers by Victory Brewing Company, and this one is no exception. Earth & Flame had a great overall flavor of sweet malt, and all the characters of a good barrel aged beer. I am very happy to have had found this bottle locally. It was great to hold on to it for a few months before opening it. Maybe there might be some sitting on a shelf near you. Pick it up if you happen to see it still.
Metal Connection: Here is one of those bands that you will either love or really fuckin’ hate. Out of all my Metal head friends, I think it’s a 50/5 split on the subject of loving or hating this band. I, for one, appreciate and like some of their songs. The perfect song for this Metal Connection just so happens to be the very first song I ever heard from London based Power Metal band, DragonForce. The song is called “Through the Fire and Flames,” which is the opening track on the band’s 3rd full length album, Inhuman Rampage, released in 2006. This song really stuck out due to it’s opening and the way the first verse comes in. It really reminds me of an old 80’s cartoon theme song. You know, something like an old Japanese robot warrior, or group animal killing machines type cartoon. Just listen to it, and imagine the group of good guys running with the whole background being full of colors and lines showing their speed.