As I mentioned, my wife and I are on a Tales, Taverns & Towns tour in Chicago, and our first stop was the Green Door Tavern, where I had Morning Wood from Local Option. On the bus, our guide, Liz, had some beers available for us to drink on our way to the next stop. I saw this was a porter from Kona that was brewed with 100% Kona coffee, and since I knew we were in for a long evening, I thought it wouldn’t be a bad idea to have a coffee beer early in the evening.
Location: Enjoyed in the bottle on the Tales, Taverns & Towns tour trolley bus in Chicago, IL.
Numbers: 5.3% ABV, 23 IBUs, 13.4° Plato OG, ~150 Calories
Ingredients: Malts: Pale (Premium 2-row), Extra Special Carapils, Caramel malt, roasted barley, dark chocolate malt, victory; Hops: Millenium, Willamette
Appearance & Aroma: I couldn’t see it, but I’m going to assume it was pretty black in color. I could almost see the head, which appeared to be creamy and tan colored. The aroma was a mix of roasted malts and coffee with some hints of dark chocolate.
Taste & Feel: The body was light-medium and the mouthfeel was smooth and somewhat creamy. The flavor up front was like semi-sweet dark chocolate, which smoothly transitioned to a roasty coffee flavor in the middle. The finish was a nice, complex mixture of roasted coffee and malts, dark chocolate, and a very mild earthy coffee bitterness. The dark chocolate and coffee flavors lasted for a minute or two in the aftertaste.
Food Pairing: This beer has a lot of dark chocolate and coffee flavors, and I think it would go best with a lighter dish like a turkey sandwich or BLT, to let the beer flavor shine. If you wanted a meal that would match up to these flavors, I’d probably go with an open faced roast beef sandwich (with gravy of course) or wet BBQ ribs.
Overall Impression: I’m not usually a big fan porters, but this one definitely caught me by surprise. This had a nice creamy mouthfeel and a hearty, complex flavor. I really enjoyed the mix of chocolate, dark chocolate, roastiness, and coffee flavors. It was flavorful, yet at the same time, very drinkable (I didn’t have a problem polishing off the last third of it when it was time to go into the next bar). Overall, this was a very good beer, especially on a cold evening like this one. I’ll definitely be picking up more of this when I get home.