I know what you're thinking. "He did what?!?! With those beers?!?! Is he mad?!" Yes. Yes I did. Yes I am. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Driftwood Singularity vs Stone Enjoy By, the beer blend to kick the shit outta all other beer blends. Don't even think of calling this a black & tan. A better name would be "Big Black Bat Outta Hell with Horns"
Let's just get this stuff outta the way first - yes that's a shaker glass (probably the best one ever made, just look at those horns!). There was still plenty of aroma coming off this beer, heck Commander Hadfield probably smelled this on the ISS. I used about 8oz. of Stone and 4oz. of Driftwood. I had 2 bottles of Enjoy By (oh you didn't get any? hire better elves) and maybe 20 bottles of Singularity... Screwing around with beer is fun and there was lots to spare for this science experiment.
Driftwood Brewing Singularity - The biggest baddest Imperial Stout North of the 49. Oh it's too boozy? Go home. It weighs in around "11.9%" Pure comedy. I could have used a 2012 that had mellowed and smoothed out a little, but where's the fun in that? I also wanted to practice my fire breathing afterwards.
Stone Enjoy By - Possibly the best IPA I've ever had. 'Dry hopped to the tits' as my buddy Matt says. Suprisingly balanced in my opinion. This brew is actually designed and manufactured to be as fresh as possible and they'll pull it off the shelves after the 'Enjoy By' date. Brilliant website too!
Personally I would have loved to do this with a Blendtec blender... maybe next time. So what's beer blending? As a basic principle it involves pouring one beer into another beer and there are infinite combinations. Historically speaking, blending actually goes back to the early days of brewing. Even the very basics of brewing involve blending of various amount of hops and malts. How many times have you heard a beer review mention 'balance'? Many beers are blended during the brewing process, while others are blended afterwards. Cantillon Gueuze is a great example of various vintages being blended together to enhance the taste and characteristics. Chances are Cantillon uses something fancier than a shaker glass as its blending vessel.
I'm calling this a fight, because the resulting blend is a combative stew of brew goodness in your mouth competing for your taste-buds, but in the end like many good fights these two get along quite well. Kind of like make up sex but beer. Tasty tasty beer.
Appearance/Smell - As I mentioned before I started with about 2 parts Singularity and 1 part Enjoy By. The Stone Enjoy By is actually quite clear, but it quickly turned to night as I poured in Singularity. Infinite Density is right! The first thing I noticed was the smell, from across the room. I think I woke up the neighbors. The hops from Enjoy By dominated at the start but then the huge kick of roast, chocolate, vanilla, bourbon sweetness, and oak from Singularity kicked in. That alcohol burn from the Singularity was all but hidden. I'm slightly scared to taste this beer, what did I pour?!
Taste - My immediate impression was that this tasted like a CDA. But about 1000 times better than any CDA, Black IPA, Cascadian blah blah blah I've had before. Volume 11. The flavors were just so complex and matched each other perfectly. The extremes in one direction from Enjoy By were matched by the extremes from Singularity in the other direction. You get all the hoppy piney IPA goodness from Enjoy By, and all the glorious Imperial Stout notes from Singularity. All the flavors in the aroma are present and more intense. Back and forth, punch to punch. At this point I poured in a little more Singularity because, you know, it seemed like a good idea. Some people might call this a hot sticky mess, but isn't that what makeup sex is all about?
End Thoughts - This is a monster. I will never pay for another 'CDA-like' beer until someone can brew one like this. Is it even be possible? I've blended a few different beers but this has blown away all of them. This particular blend will probably frighten a few people, so be careful, safety goggles recommended. Super powers are a possible side effect.