Okay, so it’s not entirely new. I’ve done beer tastings before, and for the most part, I’ve really liked them. I don’t do the typical commercial beers because I love big flavor!
With that being said, when Issa at Khoury’s Fine Wine and Spirits showed me the four-pack of CoCoNut Porter – that’s not a typo – I hesitated only a moment before I grabbed one. What the heck. I did look askance at Issa, and he grinned and said, “it’s not sweet.”
Intrigued, I purchased the four-pack.
Incredibly, they’ve only been in business since 2005, but due to the deliciousness of their beers, they’ve become one of Hawaii’s fastest-growing companies, even in this tough economy. They have a tasting room, use sustainable methods of running their business, packaging the beer, patronizing local farmers, etc. They appreciate the tourism dollar and strive to make every person feel special.
So what does that have to do with Vegas? Well, other than actually purchasing the beer here, not much. But you’ll see why the beer is the star of this post instead of wine.
It’s no secret that I love red wine. But let’s face it, red wine in 100°+ Vegas heat is not always very appetizing. What to do if you want big flavor that still pairs well with the heat? Well, you find a beer! And what could be more summery than a coconut beer?
First of all, this beer looks suspiciously like Guinness when it’s poured into the glass (Warning: getting a can out of the plastic thingie they wrap around the tops of the cans can be, um, *time-consuming*). It’s rich, thick, and frothy and looks so very appetizing.
This is not your typical see-through Porter – this could easily be called a Stout. I was very surprised at the rich *look* of the beer. It is a dark, opaque brown – almost black. Even the head is dark; instead of being beige as one would expect from a Porter, it’s actually tan in color.
On the nose, it’s loaded with coffee, chocolate, and surprisingly, just a soupçon of coconut. Definitely not overwhelming. And the taste verifies the look and the aroma. It’s smooth and rich on the palate, and the coffee, chocolate, coconut, and spices just wash over the tongue. Typical of Porters that I’ve enjoyed in the past, it is not overly hoppy, but you definitely get a hint of hops on the palate. It is a truly delicious Porter for big-beer fans. My only disappointment with the beer is that I didn’t get a lot of lingering coconut flavor. You can put that disappointment at about 3% of my overall estimation of the beer.
Oh, and Issa was right. It is most definitely NOT sweet!
One bit of caution – I’ve had two cans of it and have not been able to finish an entire can. It’s that rich. It is best served chilled, but not so cold as to diminish the fragrance and flavor. With that being said, I understand that Stout purists may want it closer to room temperature. As a wine purist, I empathize and understand.
Suggested pairings would be anything you’d have with red wine, including BBQ. And chocolate. Yum.
Maui Brewing Company
Available in four-packs from Khoury’s in Henderson. I paid $4.98 last week. YMMV.