|Tickle the Tastebuds - Beers & Breweries|
It's Valentine's Day in a bottle. And if you don't have a significant other who will appreciate this rich, chocolatey Starr Hill stout, then just treat yourself!
A part of Starr Hill's All Access program, Double Bass Double Chocolate Stout is available January through March. The deep brown ale smells smooth (don't ask me how smooth smells – pick up a bottle and see for yourself). The nose presents a touch of coffee, malts and alcohol.
The taste pops immediately with chocolate, followed up by a bittersweet chocolate caressing of the tongue. The initial flavors give way to vanilla undertone and malty goodness. The mouthfeel is full and smooth, with just enough tingle.
And at 7.8% ABV, the beer offers an immediate relaxing effect without sedating you.
Double Bass is brewed with a malt bill of Maris Otter, chocolate, crystal and Carafa II plus golden oats to give it the smooth body. Hops are appropriately subtle: Apollo (assumedly for the bittering effect of dark chocolate) and British hops East Kent and Goldings. Flavor adjuncts are cocoa power, cocoa nibs, vanilla beans and lactose.
Virginia-based Starr Hill Brewery recommends several pairings for this beer: hoisin-glazed baby back ribs, aged goat cheese or gouda, or a raspberry chocolate tart. I'd love to pair this with a creamy cheesecake, to provide complements in the richness and gratifying contrasts in the flavors.
Starr Hill Brewery currently distributes in Alabama, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia and Washington D.C. (use the beer finder for more specifics). Or stop by the brewery at 5391 Three Notched Road in Crozet, Virginia.