A couple of years ago I was lucky enough to try a beer from DOGFISH HEAD called RAISON D’EXTRA, a 2005 imperial & seasonal version of their year-round beer RAISON D’ETRE. It blew me away. I called it a “barrel-aged cookie beer”. I knew I got lucky to encounter it on tap in Washington DC, and yet I’d never seen its precedent beer, RAISON D’ETRE, until the other night in Las Vegas. That beer’s pretty damn good as well. It is described by the brewer as “A deep, mahogany ale brewed with beet sugar, green raisins, and Belgian-style yeast. As complex as a fine, red wine.” I would hasten to add that it is also a thin-bodied (not deep), near-opaque beer that tastes very Monk-like – smooth, mildly sweet, and rocking some serious caramel malts. It has 8% alcohol and you taste every bit of it. This is the kind of beer that has made DOGFISH HEAD’s reputation – bursting with craft and care, and “off-centered” enough to be truly unique & cool. 7.5/10.