In my last post, I mentioned I was in St. Louis for the weekend, taking the kids to the zoo on their day off school. My wife had to work and was taking Amtrak into town to meet us. Her train was delayed a bit, so I stopped at 4 Hands Brewing, had a pint of their Prunus Saisonand picked up a growler to go. My wife’s trip wasn’t great, so she wanted to stop at a bar for a drink before heading to my dad’s house. We stopped at Bailey’s Chocolate Bar in Lafayette Square. O’Fallon Brewery contract brews this amber-wheat chocolate ale for Bailey’s.
Location: On tap and served in a regular pint glass at Bailey’s Chocolate Bar in Lafayette Square in St. Louis, MO.
Appearance & Aroma: As you can see by the photo, it was pretty dark in there, but the beer appeared to be dark amber colored and fairly clear for a wheat beer base. There was a finger-thick head on it, which left very little lacing on the glass while I drank it. There wasn’t much aroma to it, only the slightest hint of cocoa.
Taste & Feel: The body was medium and the mouthfeel was slightly crisp from the decent amount of carbonation in it. The flavor up front was lightly malty with some wheat-break like flavors. In the middle a bit of cocoa powder like flavor came in, and it finished fairly dry with almost no bitterness. There was a bit of residual cocoa powder-like flavor in the aftertaste, but it didn’t last long.
Food Pairing: Obviously, you’d have to pair this one with some sort of chocolate dessert. The cocoa powder flavors in this beer were somewhat light, so the beer would leave a little bit of the chocolate flavors while helping to cleanse the palate a bit.
Overall Impression: I’ve had several chocolate beers before and was expecting either a rich chocolate flavor, or a somewhat fake chocolate candy like flavor (like O’Fallon’s Cherry Chocolate Beer). Much to my surprise, the chocolate flavors were fairly muted, and it almost tasted like someone accidentally spilled a bit of cocoa powder into a regular wheat beer. The light cocoa powder flavor didn’t appeal much to me, leaving me wanting something a bit bolder. While it might be a great beer to wash down a rich chocolate dessert, I had it by itself and wanted more.