Opened a test bottle of this last night. Oh my! The ABV of this batch is 9.9% with a FG of 1.014. My mash may have been a little lower than planned. I also changed up the oaking to 4 oz. for four weeks and added a pack of US-05 to go with the S-04.
This tastes awesome! The smoke and the oak are evident, but neither are over powering. The molasses adds just a hint of flavor and pushes the slight alcohol heat to a pleasant rum like under tone. The color is very dark and the head is tan, very thick, and long lasting. Another month or two aging and it should be in its prime.
I bottled this brew in 500 ml swing tops and plan to give it as part of our traditional "homemade" Christmas gifts, which also include peasant herb bread, pesto, puttanesca, and cream candy.