One of a number of siblings to the previously reviewed Insanity, the brewer tells us that Prophecy is their tripel, Merry Monk's Ale, aged in bourbon barrel. I liked Merry Monk's ale is Weyerbacher that I tried in a group in early 2006 along with a bunch of their other brews - but I liked their Quad the best...and I appear now have a bottle of that in the oaked version in the stash under the name Blasphemy. Maybe this will end up a double review...except that those two 22 oz bottles equal about eight standard beers. Maybe not.
The beer pours the deep straw of colour of vintage champagne even if a slight bit, but only a bit, less effervescent. A fine white merenge head maintained by all those bubbles. Candy, apple juice and heat on the nose while in the mouth, this is definitely a triple - with a stone hardness to the ale as well as plenty of petrol that reminds me of dry riesling. What does the oak do? Well, there is some tempering of the white pepper sharpness, definitely a whiskey earthiness and some vanilla. But does it also takes away some of the quieter flavours, too. I did note whiskey in 2006 in the unoaked version but I also noted peach. The vanilla really replaces or covers that up. Has the wood, by mellowing, also made it a little less complex? Has it made the petrol stand out too much? I would only know by doing a side by side.
The BAers give this one a harder time than they give Merry Monk - 14% thumbs down compared to 12%. For me, the white pepper burn plus gasoline is likeable but it clearly could justify that degree of dissatisfaction.