Session #30: Beer Desserts

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It’s been a full week since I forgot to participate in this month’s Session, for no better reason than it was the day I flew back from London; a lost day, as it were. So in an effort to at least write about the topic, albeit late, here is my take, backdated, on the last dish of the meal: dessert. The topic was hosted by Beer 47, who explained his rationale.

What beer desserts have you tried and liked? Disliked? What beer styles work well with dessert and which ones do not? Do you have any beer dessert recipes that you enjoyed and would like to share?

Like many people, the first beer dessert I had that opened my mind up to the myriad possibilities of beer with dessert was a porter float, which I had in the early 1990s during a visit to Colorado’s first microbrewery, Boulder Beer Co.. It was on their menu and I ordered one, not knowing exactly what to expect. It was revelatory.

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Since that close encounter of the dessert kind, I’ve had countless more experiences with beer and dessert, from desserts made with beer to simply heavenly pairings. Certain beers do, of course, more readily lend themselves to desserts than others. As a general rule, stronger, darker beers make good dessert beers, though some fruit beers are likewise a good match depending on the dessert. A Framboise (raspberry) Lambic and anything chocolate is a natural. The beers I’ve found work best with dessert are the following:

  • Barley Wine
  • Bocks & Doppelbocks
  • Dubbels
  • Flanders Red Ale
  • Fruit Beers (non-lambic)
  • Fruit Lambics
  • Lambic (Straight)
  • Oatmeal Stouts
  • Old Ale
  • Porters
  • Rauchbiers
  • Russian Imperial Stouts
  • Spice Beers
  • Stouts
  • Tripels

I assume I don’t have to mention two things. First, this list is not exhaustive, but merely some of the more common styles of beer to experiment with. Second, they’re not universal, each goes well with a certain range of desserts. But what could be more fun than trying a variety of desserts with a range of beers?

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