It’s Restaurant Week here in D.C., and wifey and I have plans to meet up tonight with friends at Birch and Barley, the restaurant attached to one of the District’s best beer bars, ChurchKey. I’m expecting some excellent food/beer pairings, since I can’t wait until later for beers, had to pre-game just a little bit.
I decided to crack open a 22-ounce bottle of Minhas’ Boatswain Chocolate Stout, another in the series available at Trader Joe’s. I’ve pretty much reviewed all the other available varieties and pretty much liked them all, so why not finish off the series?
This beer pours out an amazing deep black color impervious to light, and a creamy foam head that reminded me of a cappuccino. The label says it’s brewed with cocoa powder, a fact that’s immediately apparent upon the first whiff, and even more with the first sip.
At first, I thought I was drinking a glass of Nestle Quick. The front of this brew is dominated by sweet chocolate flavor, which blends into a mix of mellow hops and coffee notes through the middle. I got a bit of metallic tinge toward the end, which turns into a long bitter end note. There’s a lot of mouthfeel with this beer, but it works really well.
All in all, this beer works really well together. It’s super drinkable, and the chocolate is delicious without being too much. I had downed the entire bottle before I knew it, which makes the 5.4% ABV a very good thing. Overall, I like this brew a lot and will definitely drink it again. And the best part – less than $3 a bottle!