Raspberry Coffee Stout 7% ABV
Countdown to 500.
Beer 495 has been opened and poured into my Nonic pint glass.
The raspberry is the first thing I pick up on in the nose, closely followed by the wonderful Kaldi’s coffee aroma. I’m fidgeting in my seat like an excited 7 year old. I really want to taste this beer.
My affinity for coffee is well known amongst my friends and family members. My love of beer is continuously documented on the very site that you are currently reading. When I first discovered how well the two can be combined, in the Schlafly Coffee Stout, my world was forever changed. I now am always on the hunt for a good coffee beer.
On this hunt I have come across some that didn’t quite meet the standard of my first, while others have shockingly blown away any and all competition. Imagine my excitement to see bottles of Schlafly Raspberry Coffee Stout for sale at the Schlafly Bottleworks.
The Schalfly Bottleworks is a wonderful place to visit. They have a great restaurant, a fantastic tour and, most importantly, access to many of Schlafly’s great beers. I’ll be providing a full breakdown of my visit to the Bottleworks later this week.
Quickly now, back to the beer.
My first sip, how do I describe the joy, the satisfaction…oh right let me describe the taste. The raspberry comes through in the front and then fades as the coffee flavor takes over the middle. As you are preparing for your next sip the raspberry rises back to prominence in the finish. A nuanced melding of strong but not overpowering raspberry flavor and delicious coffee flavor takes hold. To use yet again, the dancing metaphor, the raspberry flavor is definitely in the lead, but does a great job of showcasing the talent and pizzazz of the coffee flavor. The two twirl together and exquisitely know their part and the part of the other.
To put it bluntly, I really like this beer.
Besides the fact that it’s a Schlafly beer, and specifically a Schlafly coffee beer, I initial bought this brew because it is designed to be aged. Schlafly brewers use a living yeast that allows the beer to change character over time, constantly developing. I thought I’d be able to sit on the beer for at least 6 months, hopefully a year, and ideally 2+ years. Here I am 2 ½ months after purchase not being able to resist.
My Countdown to 500 unique beer check-ins on Untappd, is part of what hastened my opening of the brew. This beer I assumed would be well worthy enough to be “raspberry” picked (excuse the bad wordplay) to be beer 495 on the countdown. But honestly that was just a rationalization because I really just wanted to drink this beer.
Not even a full glass in, I’m already regretting not buying 2 or 3 bottles when I had the chance. This is a summer seasonal item from Schlafly so I’ll have to wait 5-6 months before I can purchase it again. C’est la vie.
Agh, so many questions keep coming to mind about this beer as I drink it. How much better is this beer after it has been aged 1, 2, or 3+ years? I wonder, does the coffee flavor mellow out or get stronger, or is it the raspberry flavor that changes? Is it a mellowing out of the beer as a whole, making it smoother? Do the raspberry and coffee flavor meld together even better after it ages? Do any of you have answers to these questions? Have you aged this beer?
I feel compelled not to end on a litany of questions. So I will end with this simple message, If you see the Schlafly Raspberry Coffee Stout on tap order some. If you see it in bottles buy at least 2. Age one and drink the other post haste. That is all. Cheers!