Brew Review

Brew Review: Stone Brewing's Smoked Porter...Floats?

It turns out you can't please everyone.

I think we can agree one a few things, thought. For example: I scream. You scream. We all scream for ice cream. We also scream and shout and salivate at the thought of great beer. What if I told you that I combined the two?

At last week's Draft Magazine Craft Brewing Festival, the nice folks at Stone Brewing turned me on to an interesting idea: beer floats. True, Four Peaks has had Oatmeal Stout shakes on the menu for a while now, but a beer float is something I've yet to wrap my mouth around.

When I told the New Times staff that creating these floats with Stone Brewing's Smoked Porter was precisely what I intended to do today, the reactions I got ran the gamut from curious to sickened. Regardless of their opinions, I began scooping Blue Bell vanilla into cups of Smoked Porter.

Do beer floats tread water or is this dessert idea a real sinker?

Tastes: like a perfect contrast. The smoked malts in the Stone Porter lend an almost charcoal bitterness to the sweet ice cream. If you like your campfire marshmallows burned to a fine crisp, you'll take down a couple of these in a hurry.

I got mine: at AJ's fine foods where a bottle of the porter will run you $5.

Verdict: Just about everyone I forced to try one of these concoctions ended up loving it. Even the few drinkers who initially classified the exercise as "a waste of good beer," admitted in the end that it was a pretty sweet idea (pun intended). That being said, the two drinkers I assumed would absolutely love it ended up telling me it tastes like "a poo shake." They suggested the idea might work better with a lambic or an apricot beer. Like I said, you can't please everyone. As for me, Smoked Porter floats are my new motivation for hitting the gym.

Happy drinking!

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Jonathan McNamara