This Boi Is C H O N K Y: Horchata

This Boi Is C H O N K Y: Horchata, Pontoon Brewing
Judges Ratings 
1 Review
94
Aroma:
23 / 24
Flavor:
37 / 40
Appearance:
6 / 6
Mouthfeel:
9 / 10
Overall Impression:
19 / 20
Description 

Get this boi some horchata! Notes of almond, cinnamon and vanilla round out this sweet and creamy almost rice-pudding like sweet stout!

Profile

ABV: 
8.0%
Served at: 
50 - 55º F
Judges Review 
Jason Johnson's picture
Judges Rating:
94
Aroma:
23 / 24
Appearance:
6 / 6
Flavor:
37 / 40
Mouthfeel:
9 / 10
Overall Impression:
19 / 20

What we have today my friends is a sweet stout brewed with rice, cinnamon, vanilla, and lactose. This would obviously fall under the spice/herb/vegetable beers with a base beer of a sweet stout. It's called Horchata, so I suspect it's going to have similar flavors with the cinnamon and vanilla. Lets take a look....

Oddly enough, you would think maybe the cinnamon would be a more dominant aroma, but thankfully it's not. The roasty grains, with a nice deep chocolate tones and a low coffee aroma. I do not get much in the way of hop aroma. The vanilla aroma is moderate and does not take over or dominate the roasty grain character, which is nice. The cinnamon is there, but it's happy to play the supporting role that I feel it should. I was really worried this was going to be a spice bomb and i"m happy to see they used restrained hand when adding it. To me, the beer smells like they added a little bit of horchata to a good sweet stout. The fermentation character is fairly clean, with only a small amount of fruity esters detectable. 

The color of the beer is a deep black. When held up to the light, the light does not penetrate so it's pretty opaque. The head is a well formed frothy, dense, tan head that lasts a long time. It's a very appealing stout visually

The flavor is very nice. These guys have their stouts nailed. The roasted grains are well done with the chocolate coming across a bit more semi-sweet due to the lactose. There is a background hint of coffee that lasts into the finish. I also get a low caramel-like character from the malt as well. The hop bitterness is moderate, and barely balances the sweetness. The beer is obviously sweet as it should be, and it's not candy-like of cloying. The vanilla and cinnamon come in early on the front end of the palate and wash over the middle, but the roast takes over into the finish. You do get a small amount of milky-cinnamon in the finish as well, which is very pleasing. I see why it's a called horchata. The beer has an obvious mid to upper level alchohol presence as I do get a get a low level of alcohol in the exhale after drinking. There is nothing in terms of hop flavor and any fermentation flavors are hidden by the roasty grains. All in all, the beer is very tasty, but the sweetness will make it difficult to drink more than one. 

Let's be real here, this is a sweet stout with lactose. It's full bodied and fairly chewy. It leaves a lasting sweet thickness in the mouth as you can expect from a beer like this. But it's creamy, mildly warming, and has no roasted grain astringency. The mouthfeel on this beer is spot on. 

Overall, the base beer on this one is fantastic. It may be a touch too sweet for my personal taste, but it's as sweet as allowed by the style guidelines. The cinnamon and vanilla is not overplayed and is happy to take a back seat to the base beer which is how a good Spice/Herb/Vegetable beer should be. You should always be able to see how good that base beer is and it shoudl be complimented by the spice additions. I feel this beer accomplished that very well. This beer is very well done. 

Brewery Introduction

What's the Pontoon Lifestyle? It's a way to embrace Southern leisure with a fresh, modern exuberance. It's that sweet lookin' party platform on the horizon, rocking out to your favorite tunes and waving the ol' Red White and Blue as high as she blows! Pontoon Brewing is inspired by the South's... Read More

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