Baird Bakayaro is an 8% American strong ale from Baird Beer, based in Shizuoka, Japan. It’s part of their seasonal line up and is usually on sale from December onwards, both on tap and in bottles. It started out life in 2009 as part of Chris Poel’s own design and has since grown to an annual institution for craft beer fans in Japan, where they shout “bakayaro!” at the bartender serving them, with some of its translations into English being ‘moron’, ‘idiot’, ‘dickhead’, or perhaps ‘fuckwit’ – who knew the English vocabulary was so evocative. It’s brewed using Floor-malted Pilsen, Wheat, Vienna, and Amber malts, along with imported Warrior, Summit, Columbus, Chinook, and Centennial hops from the US.
Baird Bakayaro Aroma and Taste
Why has it taken so long to review Baird Bakayaro? Well I tend to prefer drinking it on tap, so I can shout abuse at the bartenders and not get kicked out the bars. As a result, I get a little bit tipsy and then the pictures come out all blurry. This time around, I managed to pick up some bottles of the stuff and took this during the snow storm we had – yeah, this review has been waiting to be published for a while and today seems like the day – considering it’s the day Baird Bakayaro is released, and also the day it promptly pretty much sells out in non-Baird Beer bars.
Baird Bakayaro pours out a deep reddish-brown colour with a slightly off-white head on top. It reeks of sweetness and hops – a floral, dank pineness comes through after the caramel edge has faded off a bit. When Baird Bakayaro warms up there is a slight booziness that comes through, which helps to stave off the cold Japanese winter nights. It’s quite straight-forward without any development besides that mentioned. It is aggressive and in your face in terms of sweetness and hops, but that’s the American strong ale for you – a mixing of barleywines and double IPAs for aromas.
I often let my high abv beers warm up before having a sip, something I strongly suggest you do if you want to enjoy the flavours. I drank some of Baird Bakayaro when it was still chilled, well, the weather wasn’t really conducive to warming it up. It had an initial caramel sweetness to it that clung to the tongue, with some hints of chocolate in there too, but Baird Bakayaro is much nicer warmed up. It’s a full bodies sipper so don’t go try slamming back pints of this as it will fill you up and soon become cloying. The hops came through with a slight dank pine flavour and hints of citrus but Baird Bakayaro is all about the malts. It ends up leaving a sweet residue on the tongue, begging you for more.
Baird Bakayaro The Bottom Line
Baird Bakayaro does exactly what it’s supposed to. It’s a good example of an American strong ale but it’s not for everyone so if you don’t like malty beers then you’re going to struggle with anything more than half a pint of Baird Bakayaro.
Where to Buy Baird Bakayaro
Baird Bakayaro is on sale from December 1st and can be bought online at the following places: