Tuesday, 6 December 2011
Vitesse Noir and Lots of Whisky!
After finding out more about the beer though, it sounded like it was going to be pretty great. A Triple Imperial vanilla mocha Stout, and at 11% too. Those crazy hardcore Hardknott's produced this by double mashing a double Imperial Stout and then throwing in really rich flavours consisting of chocolate, vanilla and coffee. Sounds good on paper, but the proof is in the pudding beer, so to speak.
It pours pitch black with the darkest of brown hues coming in at the sides of the glass under strong lights. At first appearance it looks pretty lacking in carbonation, but be assured this beer is perfectly conditioned. The aromas are pretty obvious for this one. Chocolate covered, heavily roasted coffee beans leap forth from your glass. Its slightly oaky but I was expecting a little more from the vanilla - I suppose it was always going to be a little overpowered by the chocolate and coffee. The initial taste is thick and syrup like. The flavour is really well balanced, with all the aspects of the beer working together really well. The 11% is masked really well, and makes the beer drink much easier than it should... danger beer! It's not as warming as I thought it would be, but it's still really rich and has a great long lasting roasted bitterness about it.
This beer is pretty innovative. The guys at Hardknott are always trying to push the boundaries of what a beer can be, and why shouldn't they, it's quite refreshing. I thought, in the spirit of innovation and experimentation, that I'd have a bit of a play with this beer too. Not that the beer needs to be tampered with, I just like to have a bit of fun with my beer. I wondered what the brew would be like with a bit of oak aging behind it. I'm quite confident that you know I don't have any barrels to my name, or the quantities of the beer to do this though, so I'll have to improvise...
I decided to drink the rest of this bottle with one of my favourite drinking methods: mixing in a few drops of single malts to give a different thought process to the evening.
Vitesse Noir is a really good beer, on it's own, or even with a few drops of whisky added too. (you know us Ghosts love our spirits..) I'm not sure about the wording on the label though... Instead of saying it's "just the tonic that you needed" I would have said - 'Vitesse Noir; it gets you really drunk!' ;)
Everything in moderation, including moderation itself...