My cousin Stephen lives in Seattle, and after I sent him a package of my homebrew, he sent me back a package of beers from the Pac Northwest. I’ve had a few of them, but hadn’t felt like having the porter he sent. However, it’s a college football Saturday, and I’m watching my Mizzou Tigers’ game.
On the bottle it says, “Steam Train Porter is named for the historic trains that line Snoqualmie’s Main Street. This robust dark ale is brewed with chocolate, brown and Crystal malts, which gives it chocolate and roasted coffee flavors. The sweetness is offset by noble hops, for a beer enjoyed by itself or with a rich dessert.”
Location: Poured into a snifter glass from the 22oz bottle at my home in Bloomington, IL.
Numbers: 5.0% ABV, 28 IBUs, 1.056 OG, ~ 150 Calories
Appearance & Aroma: It’s mostly black in color, with some brown when held up to the light. There was no head, just a ring of tiny bubbles around the edge of the glass. The aroma was plesant, with some chocolate and lightly roasty smells.
Taste & Feel: The body was light and the mouthfeel was crisp, but somewhat oily. There was a semi-sweet chocolate flavor up front with some roastiness in the background. During the middle, the roastiness grows, overtaking the chocolate flavors as it heads into the finish. There’s also a bit of coffee-like bitterness in the finish as well. The coffee roastiness is what lasts in the aftertaste, along with some of the semi-sweet cocoa flavors.
Food Pairing: With all the semi-sweet chocolate, roastiness, and coffee flavors in this beer, my first thought was to pair this with a chocolate dessert, such as chocolate cake, brownies, or lava cake. However, I think it could also constrast nicely with some strawberry shortcake, bringing richer, dark flavors to this light and sweet dessert.
Overall Impression: I really enjoyed the chocolate roastiness and coffee-like flavors in this beer. It definitely wasn’t light and watery, like other porters I’ve had, as it seemed to have a good amount of cocoa and dark flavor dimension. Although there was a complex mix of flavors, it was still very drinkable and enjoyable. I enjoyed this beer, and I’m going to see if he can send me a few more beers from this brewery.