I will be the first to admit, that Dogfish Head out of Delaware is not my favorite brewery. My main reason is that I feel that they are a little overpriced, especially for the random, eclectic mix of brews that they produce. I know, you get what you pay for, but in my opinion I feel that there is little “bang” for my buck. Anyway, after that little disclaimer, enter their Chicory Stout:
This stout is interesting. Chicory is one of those flavors that you either love or hate. Luckily, I like it, hence the purchase of this random stout. Anyway, the beer pours like a stout should, nice and dark, but with a little more head than you would expect, with a nice unexpected off white coloration to it. Smell hits your nostrils with hints of coffee, roasted malts, and of course the chicory. Taste really follows suit with the smell, with a bit of bitter chocolate tossed in as well. Overall, not a bad beer.
This is a good beer, but I will say that the price makes me not want to buy it again. It is good, but not exceptional. For it’s price of $8.99 for a 4-pack, it should deliver, and it does not. The price would be fair for a 6-pack, but I will stick with a variety of other stouts the next time the craving hits. Sorry Dogfish Head, its not you, its me.
In other news, this has been brought to my attention:
Not sure if you knew, but God spells music Clutch.
Back a few years ago, a friend handed me a couple bottles of Sam Adams with plain labels, the only words printed on them were, “Coffee Stout.” That was it, nothing more, nothing less. They were part of a tasting event where the taste testers could vote on which beer became the next specialty six pack. The contest was between this “Coffee Stout” and a blackberry witbeer. Not to anyone’s surprise, the witbeer won, and the coffee stout fell to the wayside. Disappointed that I would never get to drink that beer again, I made them last for at least two days. What can I say, it was good. Once they were gone, I began my search for a similar style of beer infusing the bitterness of coffee with a darker, heavier malt beverage. Lots of different brands came and went, but I still thought of my first coffee stout.
This year, Sam Adams relased unto the world their winter seasonal 12 pack, and lo and behold, there is a beer called the “Black and Brew Coffee Stout.” Yes please. Let’s see how this beer holds up to how amazing I remember it, as this was in my beer tasting infancy…
For starters, I am a little biased, for I love coffee. I would say that I am as much of a coffee snob as a beer snob. Well, maybe not that much, but thanks to my in-laws, I have been well versed in the world of delicious java. And this beer has the java. Straight from the label, it states that they use 1.5 pounds of Sumatran coffee per barrel of beer. That is a lot of coffee.
The beer pours more bubbly than you might expect, due to it being a version of an English stout, rather than a traditional Irish one. The beer has WAY more carbonation than a silky Guinness, but this beer is a whole new beast. Roasted coffee beans is the first taste that hits my mouth, hangs out for a bit, and the beer finishes with a nice, bitter bite of dark chocolate. Very pleasing to the taste buds. One of my favorite aspects of this beer though, is the smell. Being a zookeeper, my sense of smell is somewhat distorted, but the scent of this beer cuts through my weakest sense and hits me like my kitchen early in the morning. Coffee is the best part of waking up right?
This beer is a pretty good one if you are into coffee. It is not an overpowering flavor by any means, but it is definitely there when you take a sip. Bravo goes to Sam Adams for at least making this beer to throw into their holiday 12 pack, hopefully they will start making a full on dedicated sixer of this delicious beer. If they made the blackberry witbeer (Which is awful in my opinion) they could add one more sixer variation. At least we can all hope…