Got Beer? Beer + Chocolate = Liquid Bliss

To honor the alt-romance theme in this corner of the “Got Beer?” franchise, you can probably guess what we’re going to suggest to enhance the day of l-u-v- ’n’ roses ’n’ heart-shaped boxes filled with sweets ’n’ such. Yep: chocolate beers. Russ Menegat, a former Rogue Ales manager, noted that “chocolate releases the same dopamine chemicals in the brain as romantic love does, and beer tends to reduce social inhibitions. If that doesn’t sound like the makings of an interesting evening, I don’t know what does.”

Chocolate beer is a year-round thing (though there are some seasonals in this mix), but they’ll taste extra-luscious on February 14. Let’s start in our backyahd, where you can find just-shipped four-packs of  Foolproof’s Shuckolate (6% ABV), a stout made with Garrison’s Confections and Walrus & Carpenter Oysters. And heads up: On February 12 from 5 – 7pm, you can get a jump on V-Day fun at the Shuckolate Soiree at Foolproof’s HQ (241 Grotto Ave, Pawtucket), with food, music — and beer, including a take-home four-pack of the aphrodisiacal brew. Hit foolproofbrewing.com for details.

Also in Pawtucket (aka the Craft Beer Capital of Vo Dilun): Crooked Current will woo you with its decadent Chocolate Cherry Stout — which makes its triumphant return today (February 4)!

Revival’s White Electric Coffee Stout (8.5%, in four-packs), made with New Harvest Roasters’ special White Electric blend, brings the sweetness via a variety of chocolate malts.

And head to Westerly for a singular treat: Grey Sail’s third batch of Dark Star, a bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout that was blended with 2014’s barrel-aged oatmeal chocolate stout (8.5%, in 500ml bottles). There were only a few bottles left at press time, so don’t dawdle!chocolateBeer

Here’s a sweet array of far-flung delights that should be available at better beer stores:

Stone Brewing is celebrating its 20th anniversary with the Encore Series. The first of six brews to get a curtain call is 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout (9.2%), which swapped the bitterness of hops for the delightful bite of unsweetened chocolate (though there are still plenty of hops in the mix — it’s the Stone way). The limited edition bombers are in stores now.

Dogfish Head’s Theobroma (9%, in bombers) is part of its Ancient Ale series. The DF crew notes that the exotic concoction is “based on chemical analysis of pottery fragments found in Honduras that revealed the earliest known alcoholic chocolate drink used by early civilizations to toast special occasions.” It’s made with Aztec cocoa powder and cocoa nibs, plus honey, chilies and annatto, a fragrant tree seed.

Seek out these two British classics: Young’s Double Chocolate Stout (5.2%, in six-packs) is a very affordable fulfillment of its motto: “Pure Luxury.” And Samuel Smith’s Organic Chocolate Stout (5%, in four-packs), from the pride of Tadcaster, UK, is made with roasted chocolate malt and cocoa.

Baxter Brewing’s Phantom Punch Winter Stout (6.8%, in six-packs) is brewed with roasted organic cocoa nibs and real vanilla beans, though there’s nothing romantic about the beer’s inspiration. It’s named for Muhammad Ali’s infamous knockout of Sonny Liston in a heavyweight bout in Lewiston, Maine — the home of Baxter Brewing.

Left Hand Brewing’s Milk Stout Nitro (6%, in six-packs) is made with chocolate malt. And be sure to “pour hard” to unleash the layers of flavor and its cascading visual delights. Rogue Ales’ Chocolate Stout (6%) and Double Chocolate Stout (9%, both in bombers) are packed with Dutch bittersweet chocolate. Brooklyn Brewery’s potent Black Chocolate Stout (10%, in four-packs) has been a great seasonal go-to since 1994. Heavy Seas’ Siren Noire Imperial Chocolate Stout (9.5%, in bombers) is made with Belgian cocoa nibs and aged in bourbon barrels with vanilla beans. Clown Shoes’ Chocolate Sombrero Stout (9%, in four-packs) is made with chocolate malts and a spicy blend of ancho chile, cinnamon and organic vanilla extract.

Cheers ’n’ hugs ’n’ kisses ’n’ such!

One response to “Got Beer? Beer + Chocolate = Liquid Bliss”

  1. Don't forget about the chocolate covered bacon lovers! Annual Release '15 by Newport Storm Beer is certainly a decadent treat. Cheers!

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