Little to no head, retention and lacing follow. Small amount of carbonation. Spice, yeast, and coriander all seep their way into my nose. The spice aroma is the strongest of the three and actually a little overwhelming to me. The spice reminds me of some of the heavily Christmas spiced beers.
The taste is surprisingly carbonated. The aroma is also right there as I tip my mason glass; once again the spice is overwhelming and probably distracts from the real flavor of the beer. The alcohol gives a warmth as it goes down, spice (peppery), and coriander.
Not really a summer beer as the beer is big and complex. I think I might have another opinion of this beer on a brutal cold day that mother nature throws at us in Chicagoland during the winter months. Possibly enjoying after shoveling the drive so that alcohol can bring warmth back to the extremities.
Aroma: Wow, helluva lot going on here boys...fruit, spice, hops, and alcohol...Mr. Adams you have my attention.
First taste: The taste matches my description on smell. Very complex, and definately a style bender/breaker for a Wit beer. And, the Sammy trick is that 10.3% ABV doesn't overwhelm, but there's a nice warm feel to it... in my tummy.
Overall: There's a ton of shit to say about Jim Cook / Sam Adams / Boston Beer Co that I'll save for a later rant. When I bought the 4-packer, it was with the full awareness that Samy can go way off the reservation at times, making crazy complex, overwrought 800 lbs gorillas. This Imperial Wit (Wheat Ale) is wide bodied, extremely flavorful, and has rocket-fuel grade ABV levels....but in the end...it works. If you buy it thinking I'll enjoy a few of these nice Belgium Wits on a laid-back summer eveing, wrong-0 bong-o. It's a style buster, and I wonder if it is even beer. In the end I say hats off to SA for a work of "brew" art. (Just don't drink a sixer alone)
"Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn't drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, 'It is better that I drink this beer and let their dreams come true than selfish and worry about my liver.'" - Jack Handy