Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Drafts from the Cultural Hub of the Midwest: Sierra Nevada/Dogfish Head "Life and Limb" and Dogfish Head "Theobroma"

These beers are a case of how you relate what you know to what you get.  The Theobrama was new to me.  I had read about the Life and Limb and looked forward to trying it.

Theobroma Web stuff: This beer is based on chemical analysis of pottery fragments found in Honduras which revealed the earliest known alcoholic chocolate drink used by early civilizations to toast special occasions. The discovery of this beverage pushed back the earliest use of cocoa for human consumption more than 500 years to 1200 BC. As per the analysis, Dogfish Head’s Theobroma (translated into 'food of the gods') is brewed with Aztec cocoa powder and cocoa nibs (from our friends at Askinosie Chocolate), honey, chilies, and annatto (fragrant tree seeds). It's light in color - not what you expect with your typical chocolate beer. Not that you'd be surpised that we'd do something unexpected with this beer!

This beer is part of our Ancient Ales series - along with Midas Touch, Chateau Jiahu, and other - step back in time and enjoy some Theobroma.

How does it really taste?  To me, this was mild and slightly sweet like a wheat beer. It has a little bit of a nutty aftertaste, which probably comes from the cocoa and the chiles.

Grade: B+

Life and Limb web stuff:  Life & Limb is a collaborative effort, the brainchild of Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and Dogfish Head Craft Brewery. Life & Limb is a 10% ABV strong, dark beer that defies style characteristics- brewed with pure maple syrup from the Calagione family farm in Massachusetts and estate barley grown on the Grossman "farm" at the brewery in Chico, CA. The beer is alive with yeast-a blend of both breweries' house strains-bottle conditioned for added complexity and shelf life, and naturally carbonated with birch syrup fresh from Alaska.

Life & Limb is dedicated to the family of beer drinkers and enthusiasts worldwide who continue to support the little guys, iconoclasts, entrepreneurs, and pioneers who risk life and limb to shape the vibrant craft-brewing community.

How does it taste?  It is a really good stout.  Dark as night, but not heavy.  It's bitter with a hint of maple.  The 10% alcohol will definitely knock you on your ass.  I was hoping for more complexity.  I may have drank it at too cold of a temperature.  I have a bottle that I am going to let age.

Grade: B+

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