Sunday, January 20, 2013

January 20: Smuttynose Zinneke Belgian Style Stout Aged in Bourbon Barrels and a Half-Assed 1st Beer and Food Pairing Attempt

I’m relatively new to the East Coast, and I’m excited for this blog to introduce me to some of the regional breweries. Smuttynose is based in Portsmouth, NH and here they have made a pretty interesting stout using Belgian yeast. 

To go along with the chocolate flavor I assume this will contain, I’m pairing it with a pork loin and blueberry sauce for dinner. It's a weak attempt at my goal of pairing beer and food this year because I didn't actually plan the meal and beer to happen together, but it’s still a start! At the very least, I can glean what works and doesn't work from this experience.  

 There’s a roasty smell, like a stout, but mouthfeel reveals the influence of the Belgian yeast.

Instead of having the dark roast aroma follow through in the flavor, the Belgian influence rounds out the typical stout feel with a sweetness. It’s not as complex or intense, but it gets points for being flavorful and refreshing. The body is also not as heavy as other 8.4% alcohol stouts. The Bourbon Barrel influence is at work here with nicely rounded caramel and vanilla notes. 

Happy to meet your acquaintance Smuttynose, and I look forward to many more of your fine refreshments.

Rating: B

The beer complimented the blueberry and pork quite well actually! Thanks to the Belgian yeast and a lighter, sweeter beer, this worked well with a lighter red meat and sweet blueberry sauce. 

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