Cold weather usually means dark beers for this guy. Honestly, I like them almost anytime. But as the in-state breweries get a more steady distribution, some really good ones are hitting the Baton Rouge market.
In this case, one Lafayette brewer that has become a local powerhouse, and a New Orleans outfit that is doing some great stuff as well — Parish Brewing’s Rêve Coffee Stout and Urban South’s Ca’Phe Vietnamese (FANCY) Coffee Stout.
A luscious Vietnamese-style coffee stout brewed with lactose sugar and locally roasted coffee from French Market Roasters. 2017 Beer Army Foundation gold medal winner for Best Sweet Stout.
This one has a warm, roasted bouquet with a thick pour. Little bitter on the front end, with a heavy roasted malt flavor and warm coffee, but the lactose sugar balances it really well on the back end. Nice texture, not too heavy. Sessionable. 4 out of 5 stars.
This silky smooth coffee stout is created with a carefully selected blend of specialty grade estate beans from Columbia and Java. Our friends and coffee gods at Rêve have finished them to a city/full city roast to highlight the true character of the beans and their origin prior to addition to our export strength milk stout. Enjoy any time of day, this beer will drink like a delicious cold-brewed coffee.
Now this is what a coffee beer should smell like — just a warm, comforting aroma of coffee and chicory. The opening is kind of neutral, but it just drifts into a delicious flavor of strong, rich coffee with just enough malty sweetness to cut through the bitterness. Much heavier, not as sessionable, but just tremendously flavorful. Five stars.
Rêve is going to get the nod here, but Ca’Phe has the added bonus of being more readily available, and cheaper in six packs as opposed to four. You can find these at a ton of outlets locally.