Saturday, November 30, 2013

Reese's Peanut Butter Cup & Beer: Is It Possible?

During last Spring's coverage of the Savor Craft Beer Experience I read about a new fad in craft brewing - combining peanut butter and chocolate into the brewing process. Being a major peanut butter fan, I was intrigued with this concept; yet promptly forgot about it when Summer ascended. In the Fall, I was reminded due to my Lost Dog Cafe app alerted me that the Twisted Pine Brewing Company - Rhesus Chocolate Peanut Butter Stout was being poured at one of their locations. I hurried over that day to taste the Rhesus and was both disappointed and encouraged. The disappointment arose because the Rhesus didn't really taste like a Reese's peanut butter cup; instead these flavors were subtle and the beer more stout like. On the other hand, I was encouraged because I did like this beer even though I had to strain to appreciate the Reese's qualities.

Over the next couple of weeks I searched for more beers in this style and finally landed the beer that many had recommended - the DuClaw Brewing Company - Sweet Baby Jesus!. This is a porter from a Maryland brewery I've been following for quite sometime and pretty much nails a Reese's cup. There is plenty of chocolate and peanut butter - but also balance - as the tail finishes with a smooth hoppy character. Keeping with the lexicon - so far this is the Holy Grail of  Peanut Butter Chocolate beers.

At the same time I was able to find a Rogue Brewery - Voodoo Chocolate, Peanut Butter & Banana Ale easy to spot in the pink bottle with Voodoo’s "Memphis Mafia" doughnuts. This is the sweetest of the three with plenty of banana throughout - nose, palette, and finish. In my opinion, the excess artificial banana was it's downfall - overwhelming the chocolate and the peanut butter. To others in our tasting party - that was not a problem. 

Finally there's one more in this style I am familiar with that I have not been able to sample: Florida's Rapp Brewing Company - Chocolate Peanut Butter Stout.  I'm not sure how wide their distribution but will seek them on theCompass Alcohol Locator our next trip to Tampa.
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