Silent NightJanuary 22, 2014
Mother Earth Brewing
Style: Imperial Stout
Not too long ago I ran out of enthusiasm for Russian Imperial Stouts. It just seemed that they all sat way too heavily in my mouth. Also the finish just wasn’t particularly pleasant. I did love the robust body but they tend to finish a little rough with a lot of intense burnt malt held up by a cloying structure.
Then we come to Silent Night. This is clearly a gem of a beer. It pours black as night with hints of brown highlights round the edge. A rich, creamy, slightly tan head finishes the picture.
The nose is all about the malt blending espresso and chocolate with a touch of soy sauce. It has a medium to full body, which is a very comfortable place to be. There is quite a bit of roast, toast, espresso and dark chocolate as would be expected from a beer this dark and dense. The surprise comes from the intense flavor of soy sauce, giving Silent Night a unique place in the big beer pantheon.
There’s a little bit of liqueur in the finish and a lot of espresso coffee and dark chocolate—none of which is overbearing, as Russian Imperial Stouts can do. They all blend together suggesting a holiday dessert or treat.
The magic of this beer happens when you pair it with a brownie. This is a perfect complement with the richness of the flavor and the density of the brownie pairing with the beer’s mouthfeel. Actually, it’s hard to tell where one leaves off and the other begins.