Just a few nights ago I cracked open a bottle of Southern Tier Oak Aged Unearthly that I purchased from Warehouse Beverage in South Euclid, Ohio about a month ago. Southern Tier does not put any dates on their bottles to let the consumer know either when it was bottled, or when they recommend it should be consumed by. When I bought this I had to hope it was "fresh". I was very much looking forward to this hoppy oak aged gem and what happened next was a huge let down. I took a few sips and realized right away something was off. Malt, Malt and more Malt. The sweetness and the total lack of hops lead me to believe I had a bad bottle. Before I 100% passed judgment I reached out to a friend, Ryan, aka clecraftbeerrun on twitter, who loves this brew and is a hop-head like myself. After a few tweets back and forth it was confirmed that I did indeed have a bottle that was well past its prime.
This immediately got me thinking about my previous rant, Why Don't All Brewers Date Their Bottles. I still hope that all brewers will adopt a dating system that at least tells us when the beer was put into the bottle. The good news is that Southern Tier did message me back and told me they have plans to start dating their bottles very soon. The Bad News, having to dump a 22oz bottle of Oak Aged Unearthly was heartbreaking.