River North - Unified Theory (Oak-aged Imperial Wit)
We rolled into the tasting room of River North the day after it celebrated its first anniversary party, greeted by a red-eyed staff. After working our way through a flight of the brewer's beers, we understood its pain. Most of the brews that it produces are way too strong to drink in quantities, but also way too tasty to put down. Unified Theory, an Oak-aged Imperial Wit, was the worst offender. Like any Oak-aged Imperial Wit, it's rippingly strong at 8.5 percent, light in color, and packed with fruity and spicy flavors layered over an understated malt base. The addition of toasted oak spirals into the fermenter adds a great mellow vanilla flavor to the beer.