Arts & Culture / Mosaic / May 11, 2011

Flavored beer

Beer is often compared to wine. While wine has its advantages, one thing beer has over wine is the number of different ingredients that can be added to beer to create many different flavors. Literally anything can be added to beer, allowing for some really creative, unique —but sometimes unpleasant—beers. Here are a couple of the more interesting ones I have had recently:

Furthermore Knot Stock (American Pale Ale, 5.5 percent alcohol by volume (abv)): This is a fairly standard pale ale, but is brewed with black pepper. It pours a cloudy dark copper with a big off-white head that leads to fantastic lacing. The smell starts out with fresh fruity and citrus hops. There is a little bit of black pepper in the nose as well. The taste begins with a standard pale malt flavor with orangey hops. There is the perfect amount of pepper in the taste. It adds just enough spiciness without overwhelming or diminishing the amount of refreshment. Overall, this is a good, unique beer I am glad that I tried. I am not sure it is one that I will seek out or purchase more of in the future, though.

Tyranena Benji’s Smoked Imperial Porter Brewed with Chipotle Pepper (American Porter, 7.5 percent abv): This pepper beer pours pitch black with a thin tan head that settles to the edge of the glass. It looks medium bodied. The beer smells very complex and tasty: sweet malt, woody, some alcohol heat and an odd fresh pepper smell. I have never tasted a beer like this one—very unique. Smoky, sweet malt, woody with a significant pepper flavor throughout. Very balanced as each flavor is represented but none of them conflict each other, surprisingly. I will be looking for this one again.

John Christiansen

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