Beer Thoughts: Re-Look at Buddha Nuvo

Beer Info:
The Buddha Nuvo was a collaborative beer with about fourteen Colorado breweries. The funds raised from sales go to the Colorado Brewer's Guild. This beer features Buddha's Hand fruit, pumpkin, spelt, oats, peppercorns, ten strains of Brettanomyces and Saison yeast, was aged in French Oak Chardonnay barrels, bottle conditioned with local honey, and it sits at 12% ABV. Here's photos of the making of, the bottling, and our first review of Buddha Nuvo. Now that it's aged for about 9 months, we thought we'd give it another look.

Beer Thoughts:
In our first review we had some good things to say and some not good things to say about the beer. Overall we felt this one was too young. Now with some age the beer is clearly much more balanced and the complexities are shining through. Toned down heavily is the astringent burn from the alcohol that was in the nose and flavor. In the nose we got lots of Buddha's Hand lemony citrus, some honey, and citrus Brett funkiness. The flavor and mouthfeel have also seen big changes. The farmhouse, nuttiness and citrus yeast characteristics are coming out. The beer is creamier because it's not hiding behind the alcohol burn (although there is still heat of course, it's 12% afterall!), the lemony notes of the Buddha's hand shine through. Perhaps most noticeable is the Chardonnay oak notes are much more prominent than before (they were definitely present before though, don't get me wrong) but now the beer in our collective opinion has some major wine traits, it's actually a very unique characteristic and I'm fond of it.

Our Recommendation:
Recommended for the beer geek that likes big and crazy beer. Recommended to someone who appreciates wine. I imagine the average drinker won't be too thrilled about it, but I could be wrong. We would also say that this one will still get better with age, we think at this point the Brett characteristics will really keep changing a lot.

How To Drink It:
This is most definitely a sipping beer. I think sharing with a couple people would be ideal. I imagine it would be difficult to drink a whole bottle, unless over an hour or two. Tulip glass.

Full Disclosure:
We paid full price ($39) for this beer. It's a lot of money, maybe go in on it with another person or two.

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BeerEric Steen