Beer Review: Three Floyds’ Moloko

This week I’m trying two different stouts from a company that mostly makes super hoppy beers and one incredibly rare stout (not one of the two I’m having). For the unfamiliar Three Floyds is a regional brewery in Munster, Indiana which is sadly on the opposite end of Indiana from Cincinnati. Three Floyds (aka 3F aka FFF) mostly produces IPAs and pale ales with lots of extra hops, beers like Zombie Dust, Alpha King, Arctic Panzer Wolf. On the flip side of that is the “legend” of Dark Lord, a Russian imperial stout released 1 day a year in a massive festival known as Dark Lord Day. I say “legend” because Dark Lord is either the greatest stout some people have ever had or an overly sweet soy sauce substitute. Another thing backing that legend is that you can trade it for just about anything online.

Last night I had 3Fs’ Moloko milk stout. Milk stouts (aka sweet stout) are so named because they contain, wait for it… milk! Shocking I know, well actually they contain lactose which is essentially the same thing. So any lactose intolerant folks should avoid milk stouts. What does milk add to a beer? Unfermentable sugars which result in a sweeter taste and creamier bodied brew.

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Drink Your Dessert

Photo by Bernt Rostad

Money and calorie constraints suck. As much as we’d love to be able to spend and eat all we want without consequences, sadly science has been rather slow in developing a money tree or a pill that burns calories. That being the case, I here by propose a new rule for dining out. Drink your dessert.

I have come to see the wisdom in this rule thanks to a fine local establishment not far from my home. Gabby’s Cafe in Wyoming is an American cafe with a pizza, pasta, and burger heavy menu. Moderately priced, not too busy, and within walking distance so it’s really all I need from a local restaurant. But lately I’ve found myself there at lot more often later at night for dessert and drinks. That was where I discovered Southern Tier’s Creme Brulee Stout. As I looked over the dessert menu the waitress recommend this beer as a nice complement and informed me that they had it on tap. I ordered both the beer and the tiramisu. I ended up leaving an empty glass and a full plate on the table when I was done. The beer was sweet, filling, and the perfect end to a meal.

The Creme Brulee Stout surprised me with just how much it smelled like a creme brulee and frankly this is usually a bad sign for me. Things that smell like something they are not usually have too much processing and artificial flavoring to be really satisfying. However when I took a drink I was a convert. The drink is served in a tulip glass or snifter. The first taste is sweet. You can truly taste the vanilla and burnt sugar, but it quickly comes through with a hint of bitterness and alcohol that keep it being cloying. The mouthfeel is thick but surprisingly bubbly. Personally I really enjoyed this beer.  That said, I like sweet beer and even I don’t think I could have had a second pint. If you don’t like sweet beer this might be a little hard for you to take. No wonder I didn’t have an appetite for tiramisu after all this. On the other hand, my companion for the evening also pointed out that this beer has the added benefit of making your breath smell really, really good so maybe that will be an added consideration.

The view from my booth at Gabby’s.

If you decide to break my rule and order dessert as well as a drink, I highly recommend pairing this beer with Gabby’s carrot cake. The two compliment each other brilliantly. and if that’s not enough decadence for you, when I posted a picture of my drink on Facebook a friend told me that they had made a float with the stout and some Dojo Sea Salt Caramel Gelato. I think I may have a new recipe to try for The Charlie Tonic Hour’s drinks segment this week.

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