The Woodcut series by Odell Brewing Co. is a series of beers based on barrel aging in a certain type of barrel.  Odell purchased new medium toasted American Oak barrels back in 2007 and this style of barrel has been used since.  The beers in this series are all brewed using Odell’s pilot system before being chilled and placed in barrels.  While stainless steel tanks impart no flavor into beer, wood barrels do.  Often barrels are previously used to make whiskey or bourbon before sold to breweries to age beer.  This makes Odell’s choice a bit unusual.  I have only been lucky enough to try No. 4, their latest release,  and I can say the barrels provided the right amount of flavor.  Besides we have enough bourbon barrel aged beers out there.

When I got off the plane from Denver my suitcase was dripping and I could smell beer.  I had bubble wrapped all the beer so my mind immediately jumped to the cork in this bottle.  Alas, it was safe.  In fact I had some difficulty getting the cork open.

No. 4 is a Double Märzen-Style Lager.  I poured bottle #4796 into a pint glass revealing a copper hue and a medium, light head.  Aromatics of vanilla and almond waft up and a little cinnamon and nutmeg.  The beer had a slight carbonation with a full body and a bit of alcohol that gave way to the mellowness of oak tannins and warm flavors of fall.  At 11% ABV this does pack a bit of punch.  If you happen to get your hands on a bottle, I recommend a cool evening with a good friend and relaxing conversation for this beer.


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  1. Dhruvit says:

    Just went to SD a few weeks ago and your list is spot on. AleSmith, Ballast Point and Port/Lost Abbey are all amazing. If you can’t make it to a lot of bwirerees, you might consider going to a bar called the Liars’ Club in Mission Beach. They have 25+ taps and most are local beers. I tried beers by Alpine, Green Flash, AleSmith and Port there.

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