For this installment of Tasting Notes, we set out to prove that summer is as much a stout season as any other by cracking open a couple bombers of Chocolate Peanut Butter Milk Stout from Garage Brewing Co. (Temecula, California).
Developed to give beer lovers an indulgent treat in Stout form, Chocolate Peanut Butter Milk Stout is a “scrumptious” Milk/Sweet Stout that “touts rich, bold peanut butter aromas and a silky chocolate mouthfeel.” Weighing in at a sip-worthy 7.1% ABV, Chocolate Peanut Butter Milk Stout is sure to “remind you of classic peanut butter cups – without the melty mess.”
“Peanut butter beers are popular, and we’ve been researching the right combination that people will fall in love with,” Guy Bartmess, brew master at Garage Brewing Co said. “I think chocolate definitely did the trick.”
Chocolate Peanut Butter Milk Stout officially released at the start of June 2019 and will continue to be available for a limited time. You can expect to find this Specialty Seasonal Release available in 6-packs of 12 oz. cans, 22 oz. bottles and on draft at select craft beer-focused establishments located within Garage Brewing Co.’s distribution footprint in Southern California and Las Vegas, Nevada.
Now that we have properly gone over the background information for this beer, that can only mean one thing . . . it’s peanut butter time! Let’s get into these Tasting Notes!
Tasting Notes for Chocolate Peanut Butter Milk Stout from Garage Brewing Co.
Appearance: A somewhat excited pour – this is chocolate and peanut butter we are talking about, after all – produced a Stout that is solid, glossy black in color and capped with a good two fingers of fluffy, light brown sugar-colored foam. When held to direct light, the deep black color holds and only allows the smallest sliver of dark brown to cut through near the top of the pour. Head retention is decent, falling rapidly to a chunky ring that leaves an occasional dollop of lace behind on the glass.
Aroma: Chocolate dominates the nose with a decadent presence of sweet milk chocolate and intense cocoa. A nice, subtle layer of cream from the lactose then surfaces to remind you that all of this dessert-like goodness has been built upon the base of a gorgeous Milk Stout. The peanut character closes out the profile with notes of boiled peanut, roasted peanuts and freshly ground peanut butter.
Taste: When compared to the aroma, things flip around a bit here as the flavor opens with a solid peanut presence filled with unsalted roasted peanuts and real peanut butter (think slightly less sweet than most name brands). Chocolate tones of indulgent milk chocolate and rich dark chocolate then slip across the palate, wrapping around the peanut notes to create that nostalgic peanut butter cup flavor we are all after. A creamy, vanilla-like lactose note closes the experience out alongside roasty, coffee-like tones supplied by the dark malts to make it seem as though you are chasing a bite of peanut butter cup with a sip of sweetened espresso.
Mouthfeel: Falling somewhere between medium and full-bodied with a medium carbonation level, this Milk Stout is velvety in texture and glides easily across the palate. Although it obviously leans to the sweeter side, this Chocolate Peanut Butter Milk Stout avoids being cloying by having its more traditional Milk Stout characteristics of roasty dark malts and black coffee notes cut the overall sweetness a bit. The 7.1% ABV is wonderfully hidden and only offers a slight tinge of heat in the throat at times. The aftertaste is comprised of just a grace of roasted peanuts and malts.
Final Thoughts: Full Disclosure – the first thing to note here is that Chocolate Peanut Butter Milk Stout is not an overly sweet Pastry Stout that can only be handled 4 oz. at a time. No, this beer is not at all shy about being an incredibly solid Milk Stout that favors balance over cloying sweetness. With that said, the base is more than happy to embrace its chocolate and peanut butter additions to satisfy any and all peanut butter cup cravings you had going into the experience. It is truly the best of both worlds as it supplies those dessert-like flavors and aromas while still remaining highly drinkable. Could it be possible that Garage Brewing Co. was able to create a summer-appropriate Chocolate Peanut Butter Milk Stout? We think they did just that. Be sure to check this one out before its Seasonal run comes to an end. Prost!