Hope you guys are ready for a fun, new beer to start the New Year! Tomorrow, we release the first beer in our Unafraid of the Dark VI series. It’s called Chocolate Pretzel, and it is a classic Double Brown Ale enhanced with cocoa powder, Maine Sea Salt, and local biscuit malt to create a beer that we think is quite reminiscent of a lightly chocolate & caramel flavored pretzel.
Double Brown is a style that is not well represented in the array of craft beer offerings in the market today. It’s a shame because there isn’t anything out there quite like a double brown – sweet caramel, light chocolate, and biscuit notes to interest your palate, a bit higher in alcohol to keep you warm in Winter, yet still smooth drinking, and lighter in body than most stout and porters, making it a great accompaniment to both dinner and dessert!
Our double brown ale is brewed close to style. We added Munich & Biscuit malt to create aromatic toasty, bready, and biscuit notes. Crystal, Victory, & caramel malts were added for a bit of sweetness, while the chocolate malt contributes a light, roasty chocolate-ness. We, of course, then brought our own spin to this style by incorporating cocoa powder and salt (which we added to the boil), plus, hundreds of pounds of malt from within 200 miles of here, including Valley Malt 2-Row and white wheat malt.
Here are our team’s tasting notes:
– Appearance: light brown in color with reddish copper undertones- like a fresh pretzel! The head is off-white.
– Aroma: Slight bitter chocolate with a bit of bready, biscuit-like aroma. Mild, sweet caramel nose accentuated by the beer’s saltiness.
– Taste & Mouthfeel: Flavors of caramel, bitter chocolate, mild breadiness with a pleasant, warming alcohol heat finish. Our team debated whether we tasted the salt up front or at the end… either way, you should be able to pick up a bit of the salinity in this beer, which accentuates the boiled pretzel-like bitterness. In terms of body, this is a medium-bodied beer, but, if compared to most other darker colored beers, it is lighter in body.
– Pairing: If you have this beer while here at the brewery, we recommend pairing it with our Steamed Bun (either duck confit or pork belly), Shepherd’s Pie, or our Throwback Burger. We also think it would pair exceptionally well with stews (like venison or beef stew), short ribs, and desserts like a 7-layer bar.
– Serving glass: At the brewery we will be serving this beer in a 12-oz tulip glass. For maximum enjoyment, we recommend letting this beer warm up a bit before fully enjoying it. As it gets closer to 50 degrees, you will get more chocolate and bready notes.
– Stats: ABV is 7.2% and IBU is 33.
Chocolate Pretzel will be available starting tomorrow, Wednesday, January 11th!