… Part 7
About an hour has gone by since dinner, and we are a bit more relaxed, but still on the verge of a food coma. And as expected, it was time to enjoy the cheesecake. I paired the banana peanut butter and chocolate cheesecake with the Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout. When thinking about what to serve here I was a bit perplexed. The cake will be creamy and sweet, with lots of cheese, chocolate, and lots of flavor. I needed something which could stand up to all of this, while at the same time match the texture of the cake. I didn’t want a crisp beer to fight against the creaminess, I wanted to exemplify it! The Chocolate Stout is really was the perfect pair.
The Brooklyn Brewery was opened in Brooklyn New York in 1989, and has since become a world leader in producing historic, innovative, and amazing craft beers! Their brewmaster Garret Oliver has become a world renowned advocate for craft beer as well as pairing beer and food. He is also probably the best dressed man in the industry – no joke. Once again I could talk about the Brewery forever, but let’s get to the stout.
The Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout is available from October through March and is brewed using several varieties of roasted malts to achieve a rich and luscious chocolate taste and feel. I wish it came in big bottles, but you can find it in a 341ml black bottle with a gorgeous label which reads 9%.
By now you will have noticed that the majority of the beers I have chosen (or all or the beers I have chosen) have been relatively high in alcohol. This is not because I am a lush, but rather because the idea behind this dinner was to introduce real flavor, and warm our palates with rich combinations that would excite and compel us. It just so happens that some processes by which rich tasty beers are made also impart a higher alcohol percentage. We can discuss that in greater detail another time.
The first thing you notice when you pour this beer (I would serve it in a tulip or snifter) is that it is literally pitch-black. It pours smooth and slow like oil and creates a dense deep brown head that settles for a moment, and in short time disappears to a slight film. The nose is full of roasted malts, light smoke, dark chocolate, cognac, and molasses. I can’t get over the mouthfeel of this beer, is so succulent. Smooth and creamy it glides across your palate slowly and drives home roasted malt, chocolate, vanilla, a ton of warmth, milk sweetness, and the bitterness of pure cocoa. It’s very heavy, consider the strength, but it carries it perfectly. As it warmed the chocolate really opened up to vanilla and malt. The finish is bitter clean and appetizing; it certainly prepared me for a creamy cheesecake. And this combination was exactly what I wanted it to be. The cheesy rich cake with a roasty chocolate stout seemed like they were meant to be lovers – highly recommended combination.
… Part 9