Monday, December 12, 2011

Left Hand Fade to Black Vol. 3 Pepper Porter

I absolutely love the specialty beers that come out this time of year. There are only so many different varieties of hops you can mix-and-match to change up an IPA or pale ale, wheat brews get old quick in the summer, pumpkin ales are cool for about a month, etc.

But when you vary malts and spices you can really start to get creative! This brewery has a history of thinking outside of the box, with beers like Smokejumper (a Smoked Imperial Porter) and TNT ( a Weizen Doppelbock).

Left Hand Fade to Black Vol. 3 - Pepper Porter takes the cake in the R & D department...weighing in at 7.2% ABV, this beer was brewed with Chocolate and Rauch malts for an incredible base, and then spicy chilis are added for a unique twist.

The brew pours a deep mahogany color with a one-finger tan head of foam. Aroma after opening is primarily chocolate, but there are some intriguing spicy smells wafting in and out. First sip is smooth, creamy chocolate and java - nice and thick mouthfeel. Then the pepper hits the back of your throat like acid! I almost choke because I am not expecting so much flavor to be present...I am a HUGE fan of spicy foods, so I am LOVING this beer but I can see where some less appreciative consumers would be turned off to it. If you try this beer and don't like it, re-cap and send it to me! I will certainly be picking up SEVERAL more bottles for the future...

I have had brews infused with chilis before, some to good effect (New Holland Mole Ocho, Rogue Chipotle) and some not so much (Cave Creek Chili Beer). In this situation the brewers use them IMPECCABLY to enhance an already amazing beer. Go get some!

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