Brewing Success: Beer and Coffee
Coffee beer: a stimulant and depressant brewed into one beautiful incongruity. At least, beautiful incongruity wasn’t far from the goal when we developed the OQ Coffee Porter with Harvest Moon Brewery. Going on tap Friday, April 27 at 6:00 p.m., the OQ Porter uses our Eco Café Station, Haiti beans and 5 specialty dark malts to create a rich brown color and chocolate flavor, which is then lightly hopped to balance its malty sweetness. 6.5% abv.
The story started a few weeks back, with a tasting setup for the brewers at Harvest Moon. Coffees ranged from chocolatey and nutty (Eco Café Station, Haiti) to mild-citric (Rodomunho Farm, Brazil) and fruity-sweet (Nigusie Farm, Ethiopia). We brewed each coffee hot, and tasted them alongside cold brewed versions, the cold brew bringing out less brightness, more chocolate, and in the case of the Nigusie massive blueberries. For the immediate future, the Eco Café stood out as the most likely pair for the malty sweetness of a porter.
We then tasted a series of beers from other breweries using different kinds of coffee (Kopi Luwak among them) at different levels and with different methods of introduction (cold and hot brewed coffee added, brewing the coffee in the beer in one of several ways, etc). Brewmaster Kyle and assistant brewer Zack had a profile in mind and the selection of beers gave us an idea of the possible range: heavy bodied and creamy, malty and sweet, with a distinctive non-bittering, nutty and chocolatey coffee finish. They certainly know their stuff and are willing to experiment in the search for the perfect beer-coffee wedding. Conversation ranged from shortening strands of disaccharides to proper extraction temperatures and times. By 2 p.m. we were experiencing all the effects of 11% Imperial Stouts and a the heady intensity of cold brewed coffee, but we’d settled on the Eco Café and developed a few ideas for future beer/coffee combos. Get some OQ at the Moon tonight here, but stay tuned for more!