It's a new week, so it's time for a new beer release from Stone. This one, a Coffee Milk Stout, is probably a bit different from what you might expect from the San Diego brewery. You also might be wondering why anyone in their right might would add milk to beer. Well, actual milk isn't used in the brewing process.
Instead, lactose milk sugar is added to provide a light sweetness and a creamy smooth mouth feel. I've profiled several milk stouts including releases from Widmer Brothers, Left Hand, and Odell and have enjoyed all of them. If you've never tasted a Milk Stout, you should give one a try. Stone's release adds coffee to the mix.
Look for Stone Coffee Milk Stout in 12 oz. bottles and on draft this summer and fall. I'll be sure to share my tasting notes soon.
Stone Brewing Co. Introduces Stone Coffee Milk Stout:
A Bittersweet, Creamy, Coffee-Laced Stout
ESCONDIDO, CA (Aug. 4, 2014) – Stone Brewing Co. is showcasing (yet again) the outstanding skills of its Brew Crew by releasing a special beer that stems from a homebrew recipe developed by Brewery Trainer Brian Gallagher. Dubbed Stone Coffee Milk Stout, the 4.2 percent alcohol-by-volume stout is brewed with lactose and whole coffee beans to enhance the session ale’s hearty, sweet flavors. Beginning today, Stone Coffee Milk Stout will start arriving in 12-ounce six-packs and on draft at retailers, restaurants and bars in select markets nationwide.
Originally named Gallagher’s After Dinner Stout, the recipe was formulated and brewed on the 10-barrel pilot system at Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens – Liberty Station as a one-off, limited-release offering. A passionate and competitive homebrewer, Gallagher chose to revisit one of his medal-winning recipes for a milk stout with coffee beans when given the opportunity to brew at Liberty Station with Brewing Manager Kris Ketcham. The beer was an instant hit with Team Stone, Stone Brewmaster Mitch Steele and company Co-founders Greg Koch and Steve Wagner.
“Brian did a wonderful job developing this recipe and was able to artfully overcome the challenge of brewing a low-alcohol beer without it tasting too thin or watery,” explains Steele. “Because of the positive response from Team Stone and those lucky enough to taste the small-batch brew, we decided to brew it on our 120-barrel system and make it more widely available for craft beer enthusiasts across the country.”
To produce a full-bodied and silky mouth-feel, lactose was incorporated, creating a creamy sweetness that balances with the mild coffee flavors made possible by adding whole coffee beans from San Diego-based artisanal roaster Ryan Bros. Coffee. Mild ale malt was used as a base grain to help create a rich, roasty character, while other specialty grains contribute cocoa, licorice and subdued coffee flavors. Magnum hops bring a clean bitterness, brilliantly contrasting with the beer’s malt-forward qualities. Together, the ingredients make for an easy-drinking beer that is robust yet smooth.
“I was thrilled to find out that my ‘little beer’ would go on to be part of the Stone lineup and be distributed nationally,” said Gallagher. “To make this beer stand out from others, I added coffee beans at a very early stage in the brewing process, which helped bring out the roast character from the coffee, while eliminating bitter acidity and astringency.”
On the beer’s dedicated webpage, the company is sharing recipes for culinary enthusiasts to create and pair with the beer. Fans are also encouraged to explore and prepare their own dishes to pair with Stone Coffee Milk Stout, then share their favorites by tweeting and posting photos using the hashtag #PairedWith on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google+, Pinterest and the Stone Coffee Milk Stout webpage.
Stone Coffee Milk Stout will only be available during summer and fall. To fully relish the subtle touch of coffee flavor, the beer should be enjoyed within 120 days of its kegging or bottling date, which can be found on the shoulder of the bottle.
Stone Coffee Milk Stout Quick Facts
Name: Stone Coffee Milk Stout
Stats: 4.2% ABV, 40 IBUs
Availability: Limited 12-ounce bottles in six-packs and on draft, beginning August 4
Hops bill: Magnum
Distribution: AK, AL, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MT, NC, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, VT, WA and Puerto Rico