The Mint Chocolate Imperial Stout is the newest collaboration beer from the Stone Brewing lineup. This one in particular is between Iron First and Ken Schmidt. Ken is this year’s winner of Stone’s Home Brewing competition (He also won it last year). This beer has gotten a lot of buzz. Mainly because of its use of Mint. In my recollection, this may be the first time I’ve seen mint used in a beer. Most people are curious about this beer, but simultaneously very wary of it. How can mint work in a beer? Especially an imperial stout? Well, the long and short of it – It does.
Appearance: Opaque black/brown with a velvety brown head and excellent retention.
Aroma: Mint, bitter chocolate with touches of coffee.
Taste: A long mocha finish with touches of alcohol.
Overall Impression: This is a really interesting beer. It’s well balanced and not too thick feeling for an imperial stout. Also, some of typical extreme malt bitterness associated with this style is much more subdued so as not to overwhelm the mint factor. Yes, the mint is the central note of this beer but not in an overly aggressive way. It’s like drinking one of the best mint and dark chocolate truffles you’ve ever had.
Availability: In limited quantities nation wide at great beer retailers. Hurry before it’s gone!