Saturday, April 11, 2009

Dark Lord Revisited

We'd had Three Floyds' Dark Lord Imperial Stout last fall, a bottle of which Annette had acquired at the annual feeding frenzy at the brewery...

For those unaware, Dark Lord is released (and sold out) on one day at the brewery each year in March. People come from far and wide, and line up outside hours before opening, kind of like all those Star Wars geeks. So, we brought out the beer at the "stash from the cellar" phase of last year's beer brunch, and it was good. OK. Decent. If it seems I'm damning it with faint praise, well, it didn't seem to live up to the hype.

Some time later, our friend Aaron gave Annette another bottle of Dark Lord, which sat in our Circus Room until Aaron, his girlfriend Beth, and our friend Jason came over one recent Sunday for cassoulet. Dessert was homemade coconut ice cream, which is something easy and fun to pair up with beers. The coconut flavors one may find in a dark beer aged in a bourbon cask can hook up with the coconut in the ice cream, and roasty and chocolaty and whiskey flavors all complement, and are complemented by, the sweet creaminess. We brought out some Founders Kentucky Breakfast Stout, which worked just like downtown. We also had on hand some 2008 Goose Island Bourbon County Stout, but at this stage of the day, we didn't think we quite had the stamina left to meet that challenge and still be able to manage the Dark Lord. This time, Dark Lord really shone. Lots of dark, French-roasty flavor, lots of hop bitterness, chocolate, moderate to high residual sweetness, and alcohol all seemed to balance each other very nicely. And of course it rocked with the ice cream.

I still have a scoop of that ice cream left, and some Bourbon County....

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