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 do 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, spiced 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 Mexican Chocolate Stout began with a robust milk stout inspired by the English tradition, but with a nod towards Mexican Hot Chocolate. We then built upon our creamy foundation with Cacao and Indonesian vanilla beans. The beer was then spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg, and Pasilla peppers. The result is a complex and flavorful beer that gives a nod towards spiced cocoa, but still drinks like a full stout.
Layered with smooth roastiness, chocolate and a hint of spice. Aromas of vanilla, cinnamon and chocolate. Flavors of Mexican hot chocolate, dried fruit and coffee. Finishes round and balanced with a full mouthfeel and semi sweetness.
Chicken mole, coffee-dusted fillet, vegetarian green curry, lamb chops. Most Mexican food would play well off of the spice, roast, and heat of this beer.