No, this isn’t beer made with chocolate malt. Yes, this is honest to goodness chocolate beer. Remember how I mentioned that pumpkin beer isn’t really a novelty? Chocolate beer is most assuredly a novelty. Not surprisingly, it comes from Belgium, specifically Brouwerij Huyghe, the brewery better known here in the States for their Delirium Beers.
It should be noted that this isn’t the world’s only chocolate beer. It is quite common to find chocolate stouts on the market, although, as I alluded to earlier, some of these beers are made with chocolate malt, which is nothing more than barley malt that has been roasted to the point where it has a deep, rich, chocolaty type of flavor. These typically have no real chocolate at all.
There are a few brave brewers willing to give real chocolate a try however.
Appearance: Pours with a light brown coloring, with a slight orange tint. Crisp and clear in appearance, looking more like a cola than a stout, but with a lighter, whiter head than a cola gives. Little if any lacing.
Aroma: Soft, sweet, and light, small hints of cocoa with just a little bit of floral in the back.
Taste: Sweeter than I expected, and the cocoa definitely makes a solid appearance. Comes across as a chocolate soda with only a small bit of hoppy bitterness, finished off with light honey sweetness. This is really an odd beer.
Mouthfeel: Light bodied, and quite crisp on the palate. One could make the argument that this is a summer beer, and could be, in the right circumstance, quite refreshing.
Overall: Quite honestly, I have no idea on how to rate this beer. Traditional beer fans will likely hate it, because it is so non-traditional. If you’re a fan of the classics such as pilsners, porters, or bocks, you’ll likely want to pass this by.
However, from a beverage tasting point of view, it’s more pleasant than a Yoo-Hoo, which, admittedly, I’ve always found over-rated. The beer is exactly what it says on the tin, and meets its own definition admirably.
Traditional Beer Fan Rating: C
Novel Beer Fan Rating: B+/A- depending upon my mood