Friday, September 19, 2014

September 19th, 2014 - The Pumpkin Ale At The Book Of Gates


Hey folks!  The Meista here with another rockin' pairing for ya...  This evening I'm pairing the wonderful EP, "The Book Of Gates" by Amadeus Awad's EON and an Oak Jacked Imperial Pumpkin Ale from Uinta Brewing Company!  This one goes out to Mr. Amadeus Awad and Jeff over at Progressive Power... kesak my friends!!

The brainchild of Lebanese progressive metal master Amadeus Awad, "The Book Of Gates" (EP) was released on February 13th, 2013.  Along with Awad on guitars and Elia Monsef on vocals as the Necromancer, "The Book Of Gates" (EP) project features several world-class, stellar guest musicians including: Russell Allen (Symphony X, Allen Lande, Adrenaline Mob) on vocals as the Pharaoh, Amanda Somerville (Avantasia, Kamelot, Aina, HDK) on vocals as the Queen, John Macaluso (ARK, Malmsteen, Labrie, TNT, Riot) on drums, Kevin Moore (OSI, ex- Dream Theater) on keyboards, Dan Veall on bass, Elyes Bouchoucha (Myrath) on keyboards (track 1 - "Visions"), and Danny Bou Maroun (Ostura) on additional keyboards and orchestration (track 1 - "Visions").  Richly textured musically, perfectly balanced vocally, and perfectly executed as a whole, "The Book Of Gates" is a progressive metal masterpiece!  Seriously... This may be the best thing I've heard this year!  The vocals of Monsef, Allen, and Somerville are fan-freakin'-tastic!  Even with all this incredible guest talent, what really draws me to this album is Awad's flawless and breathtaking guitar work... his tone will melt your face!  The only downside is that "The Book Of Gates" is only a 20+ minute EP... I want more Amadeus!!  If you are a prog rock fan, a prog metal fan, a metal head, and/or just a fan of outstanding music all-together, BUY THIS ALBUM!  You won't be sorry!  Here's the brilliant full track list:
  1. "Visions"
  2. "The Crown's Fate"
  3. "The Book Of Gates"
  4. "Incarnation"
So it is time for my annual pairing of the seasonal Oak Jacked Imperial Pumpkin Ale from Uinta Brewing Company.  (Since its release in 2012, I've paired this beauty with Black Sabbath's self-title debut album in 2012 and with Ayreon's "The Theory Of Everything" last year.)  Although fall is still a few days off, what better way to celebrate the upcoming season than with a great pumpkin brew?  Quite possibly the best pumpkin ale on the market (it definitely is the best I've had the privilege of experiencing) the Uinta's Oak Jacked Imperial Pumpkin Ale is incredibly complex, incredibly flavorful, and very engaging.   I've often found that many pumpkin ales out there are too sweet and/or over-spiced.  Not so with Oak Jacked... it isn't your average pumpkin ale.  It has that homemade pumpkin pie flavor to it, but with a real solid oak punch (that comes from months and months of aging in bourbon barrels!)  Couple that with more subtle notes of vanilla and bourbon.   It pours a deep mahogany/rusty nail color with a huge, billowing tan head that displays both excellent retention and complex lacing.  The squash-like aroma of pumpkin is definitely present in the nose, but not overpowering.  There are also aromas of smooth vanilla, spicy cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg along with some smoky oak and boozy bourbon.  The flavor follows suit, but more on the bourbon side.  The pumpkin flavor is upfront and prevalent, but perfectly balanced with the other flavors.  Coming in at 10.31% ABV, there is some big, boozy warming, but nothing overpowering.  Medium to full-bodied, the mouthfeel is silky smooth, somewhat sticky, and quite creamy.  Jacked has a nice, slightly smoked and oaky finish... that makes for a wonderful foil to the sweeter flavors.  And that complexity works perfectly with the amazing richness of "The Book Of Gates" (EP)!!

Kesak!!  Cheers!!  And hails!!

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