Monday, February 27, 2012

How a Dark Horse Finishes

It would seem that I'm drinking beer from bigger bottles these days.

Some of the beers that I've reviewed have come in 600- and 750-mL bottles, and over the past month I've tasted some new brews from growlers—64 fluid ounces.

And now here's a third:

Dark Horse Stout
Broadhead Brewing Company
Ottawa, ON
$10.00 + $5.00 deposit, 64 fl. oz.

I first learned about this beer from one of my foodie Twitter friends; last week, one of my Thursday Pints buddies told me that I had to go to the brewery and pick up some of this oatmeal stout. Because the brewery is only 10 minutes away from my house, that wasn't a tall order.

Broadhead Brewery has only been around since last summer and already it's making an impression in Ottawa. With a half-dozen choices available and growing, the brewery is in a good position to compete with other local breweries. And being a fan of stouts, I was more than anxious to try Dark Horse.

Dark Horse has a dark brown colour with a chocolate-milk-flavoured head that dissipates quickly. On the nose, I detected strong tones of dark chocolate, backed up with hints of roasted coffee. The malts were also clear. The chocolate carries through to the palate and finish, which lingers on the tongue. It's a very good stout.

At first.

When I review beers, I tend to drink alone so I can focus on the beer without distraction and without influence. That policy is fine when I drink a standard-sized bottle or even a 600-mL bottle (a 750-mL bottle is doable but is too much for a tasting).

A growler is way too much for me to drink in one sitting, so I tend to stretch it out over two or three days. I had my first glass on Friday night, my second on Saturday, and my third yesterday afternoon. While the first glass held fresh flavours and went down wonderfully, I found my second pint with much less fizz and the flavours weren't as fresh (but were still good).

My third glass was flat and the freshness was gone. I decided not to finish the growler, and so the fourth pint went unconsumed. Such a shame: I always feel sad when beer goes to waste.

This beer must be shared. Once the jug is opened, it must be finished in that sitting. Share the growler with a buddy. At $2.50 a pint, it's a great party beer. Leave no drop.

Because this dark horse starts strong and has the potential to be a real winner. But if it's left out too long, it finishes last. (Or we can also say its finish doesn't last.)

The growler is available at the brewery only. For now.

Mill Street Tweetup

I wanted to remind my Ottawa peeps that there will be a tweetup on Tuesday, March 6, at the Mill Street Brew Pub. We have a table reserved and it is shaping up to be a great evening. The gathering starts at 6:00 and we'll be on the second floor.

If you're interested in attending, please let me know by going to the link here and clicking Yes (or Maybe).


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