Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sweet Potato Chili Stout

200th Post! I was waiting to taste my last one of these beers for this post (and I think I'll do so every 100th post). Jen designed the label. This beer was made this summer. I made approximately 15 gallons, all organic grains with organic sweet potato, and home grown/picked/dried/roasted chili peppers out of good old Rock Island. I had a very interesting method to making this beer, If you would like more information, just e-mail me. It got Fourth at the LOTMW homebrewers competition this winter. This was tasted following my Philosophy exam.
If I were ever to, no, WHEN I start a brewery, this would be the first stout on the menu. It's a perfect 6%

Appearance: A nice silent black color with a beautifully tanned foamed head that upon pour achieves a strong two fingers worth, and after 5 minutes, it still sustains one. It stickily laces the sides. Pour was thick and well carbonated. I'm excited for how well this looks and has turned out.
Aroma: Rich and roasty with a nice caremeled undertone complemented by a brief earthy sweetness from the roasted sweet potatoes. The chili's are ever so subtle that it's difficult to pick them out. This beer smells more like a chocolate stout than anything as it exhibits a hefty cocoa profile to complement the complexity of the malt sweetness.
Taste: Chocolate immediately in the fore-flavor but dissipates into the beer. Toasty and rich with a roasted backbone and a smokey foretaste. I accredit the smokiness from dry roasting the chili's. The sweet potato is still apparent amongst the malt flavor. Chocolate doesn't come through now as much as the aroma foreshadowed, but the flavor is still robust. Finally the beer finishes with a slight zip in the back of the throat as the spiciness briefly makes an appearance and then dissipates. The spiciness is still tasted several seconds in the throat, but so minuscule as to not cause the slightest uncomfortability. I like the way the sweet potato balanced out the spiciness. Alcohol is non-existant and bitterness is either masked by the roasted chili or the smokiness in the aftertaste. Jen tried it and acknowledged that the chili interestingly didn't hit until over 10 seconds after the taste.
Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy. No stickiness to the lips, but still retains a full body. Carbonation is absolutely perfect, as it nicely disperses the flavors over the palate and then aerates into a spicy finish. Medium carbonation, but no spike, it more so integrates perfectly into the liquid.
Overall Impression: I'm ecstatic about how well this beer turned out. Most homebrews you can categorize by their distinctive oxidation and other nondescript sensations. This however holds something totally different. Not to be biased about my own, but I think I'd drink this beer again, and again if I stumbled upon it locally. It's both drinkable and extremely complex.
Note: I will make this again. Nothing changes.

Tim: XX/100
Jen: 91/100

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