The Eternalist is a named in honor of the protagonist of Kurt Vonnegut’s Sluaghterhouse-Five. Billy Pilgrim is disconnected from time. This connection is very appropriate for a beer which makes time one of its primary ingredients. The Eternalist has been fermented with wild yeast, cultured with bacteria, and aged in Cabernet Sauvignon barrels with raspberries. This is a lot for one beer to go through. So it goes.
Anticipation is very important. A beer which waits over 14 months before it is ready for you, knows a lot about expectation. The scene is set very impressively even by the vessel this beer moves in – a notably heavy, half-sized wine bottle (375ml).
It pours a hazy amber with a light pink hue and an impressive head. The aroma is sweet, both the raspberry and red wine contributions are evident.
The mouthfeel is smooth, and the flavour is challenging, moving from sweet, through to a yoghurty sour at the back end.
There are so many moving parts involved in this beer, it feels like a miracle that it came off so well. I had been quite disappointed by the In Bloom: Gorseflower Wit, so it was great to land on this.
The relative difficulty in getting hold of a bottle, the time invested in the beer, the presentation and the complexity of flavour all came together to make a beer worth talking about.