The beginning of sweet stouts and milk stouts goes back to the early 1800’s in England, when milk was actually blended with darker beer in effort to make milder more nutritious ales. These beers became popular due to their unique ability to be full, rich, and sweet. The claims of sweet stouts being nutritious were of course eventually unfounded because the milk sugar that was being used did not have the nutrition of whole milk. British authorities even passed a law in 1946 forbidding the use of “milk” in beer labeling, because of the false perceptions it gave customers.
This beer style has survived into the new world of craft beer. Up until recent years, it has stayed in its classical English form. It has paved a new wave of culinary beers now referred to as adjunct stouts or pastry stouts. These beers cover a wide range of flavors, sweetness, and balance.
Most brewers find inspiration from treats of their childhood or favorite desserts. These concepts come in many forms from German chocolate cake to Almond Joy to just exploring a combination of dessert flavors. Common ingredients in these beers are a wide range of sugars: honey, maple or birch syrup, dark molasses, lactose, maltodextrin, etc. Combine selected versions of these sugars with a sturdy malt base, then add a diverse range of other exotic ingredients such as, cacao, coconut, graham cracker or sugar cone, Oreos, vanilla beans, cinnamon, cherry puree, etc. to shape a sweet-inspired beer. The result is a culinary inspired beer that may bring you back to your childhood or help you finish your night by a warm fire. These imaginative beers can be a fun palate mix change up the ever-evolving world of craft beer.
pFriem Maple Barrel Aged Pastry Stout began with a robust milk stout inspired by the English tradition. We aged this indulgent base beer in freshly emptied Bourbon barrels that most recently held maple syrup. A full sip of this Stout brings you to memories of dark chocolate mocha, tiramisu, and maple candy A finishing addition of top-quality vanilla beans lands this beer as the last course of any fine-dining experience.
This decadent stout pours a warm onyx color, with a chocolate mousse-like foam. Luxurious aromas of bourbon-spiked coffee, maple syrup, and baker’s chocolate whisp from the glass. A sip envelops your palate with flavors of tiramisu and maple candies. A finish of silky vanilla fresh-ground espresso renders this beer a fine choice for a last course with any meal.
This decadent beer stands strong on its own, but we’re loving it with a Ploughman’s platter of triple cream brie, tart table grapes, rustic Old World-style bread, chicken liver paté, and stone fruit mostarda.