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Monday Night Brewing Wood Cellar Manager Tim McDonnell Talks Cloaks & Mirrors

93 Rating - Exceptional
Monday Night Brewing Wood Cellar Manager Tim McDonnell Talks Cloaks & Mirrors

We spoke with Monday Night Brewing Wood Cellar Manager Tim McDonnell about Cloaks & Mirrors.

BC: Who came up with this beer’s recipe?
I did! We wanted to do a new milkshake IPA and I was thinking about different desserts that would work well. At the time, peach season was in full swing so that was in the front of my mind. Peach cobbler seemed like an obvious choice. Then I brainstormed with our brewmaster Peter Kiley about what ingredients we thought would bring that flavor out in the beer. I was really happy with how it came together. 

BC: What’s your favorite aspect of this beer (flavor, aroma, etc.)?
I really like the flavor and mouthfeel of this beer. It is rich and sweet enough to feel like dessert, but the acidity and bitterness cut through so it's not cloying. It's a delicate balance of flavors where nothing dominates, but they come together to create something that is exciting and brings to mind memories of peach cobbler and vanilla ice cream.

BC: Where does this beer’s name come from?
I was thinking about how funny milkshake IPA is as a style. We put these labels on things so that people will understand what they are, but is it really an IPA? I feel like it's a pastry sour that's undercover as an IPA. There's a level of trickery there. So I thought about cloak and dagger and smoke and mirrors and simply combined the two phrases.

BC: Is this your “desert island beer?”
As much as I like this beer, it would not be a desert island beer for me.

BC: Can you describe this beer in 10 words or less?
Sweet, bready, tropical, tart peach cobbler in a glass.

BC: Do you know a story – or have a personal story – that revolves around this beer?
I will never forget the day we processed the peaches for this beer. There were two people that were cutting each peach by hand and then I was pureeing them in five-gallon buckets before dumping the puree in the beer. It took more than 12 hours to process 800 lbs. The hand blender I was using was overheating and I was worried it would die - but it made it!

BC: What's a good food pairing for this beer?
That's a hard one! Try it with a fried peanut butter and banana sandwich. 

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