Monday, June 10, 2013

Midnight Sun Brewing Company - Moscow

It's June in San Diego (I suppose it probably is wherever you are, too) and that means kind of a mixed bag of things for me. First of all, the San Diego Fair is here. As a lover of all food things battered, fried and of irresponsible size, the fair is pretty awesome for me. For example, last year I tried to tackle something called the Caveman Turkey Club (a two pound turkey leg wrapped in a full pound of bacon). And while I wouldn't exactly say my attempt at finishing the Caveman Turkey Club went well (I finished maybe a quarter of it and it left me wanting to punch anyone who said the words "turkey leg" in the throat for a solid 2 months), I still absolutely love seeing the new culinary creations that turn up at the fair each year. On the not so awesome side, summer is mere days away and that means we're reaching the time of the year that I (and other stout lovers) dread. Warm weather isn't exactly conducive to drinking heavy stouts, so (more often than not) I'm forced to bypass the many stouts in my collection for something more weather suitable. So before we reach the point of no return, lets delve into the world of stouts once more and check out a beer that I'm pretty excited about- Midnight Sun's Moscow.

Moscow is a Russian Imperial Stout that Midnight Sun Originally brewed in 2011 as part of their World Tour series. Apparently, it was received pretty well because they decided to make another batch of it. Moscow clocks in at a healthy 11% and uses rye malt. I didn't expect this beer to make it this far south, but I was glad to find it in a local bottleshop a few weeks ago. Let's check this puppy out.

Even at only 11% (I know, it's not that low), Moscow pours like old motor oil. It's black as a Kardashian heart and a dense milk chocolate-colored head wells up immediately. I overpoured this by accident, but instead of making a rapid jailbreak out of the glass, the head begrudgingly lurched out and down the sides of the glass like Elmer's glue. It looked almost gravity defying. The smell is an explosion of roastiness, bringing notes of wet earth, charred wood, peat, espresso and just a hint of milk chocolate sweetness.

The taste opens with a big pop of roasted and charred malt. This progresses to flavors of burnt oak, a bit of smoke and some espresso. Right before the finish, there's a touch of milk chocolate, molasses and blackberry sweetness before the beer plunges into a finish of dark coffee grounds and burnt rye. The mouthfeel of this beer is amazing. It almost feels more like a beer milkshake than a regular beer. The carbonation is minimal, leaving a mouth-coating velvety monster to wreak havoc on your palate. Midnight Sun beers are a rare treat down here, and I'm glad I was able to catch this one. I highly recommend that you do the same. Just be sure to enjoy it before the summer comes.

Final Grade: A

Top 250 Beers Tasted: 125

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