Imperial Biscotti Break by Evil Twin

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Beer Name: Imperial Biscotti Break

Brewer: Evil Twin Brewing, Brooklyn, New York, USA

Date Sampled:  13th October 2016

ABV: 11.5%

Serving Type: Can

Location Sampled: Home

There are few things I love in this world more than beer. I mean you can't count my family and friends amongst that, they are obviously top of the tree. But when it comes to 'things' and specifically 'things' that give me immense enjoyment, beer is hard to top. Especially when it comes to culinary exploration and enlightenment.

But I do have other food and drink interests; I'm from Somerset originally so obviously I love Cider and cheese. Bourbon as well. And Gin. And pork scratchings. And steak. Look there's a lot that I enjoy.

But one other large liquid love of mine is coffee. Tea just doesn't rock my world the same way. But as my tastes have developed so has my snobbery when it comes to coffee. I don't do instant. No thank you! You can keep that muck! But whilst I have been secure in my mind for a long time that instant was no good, it's taken longer to settle on the best way to brew a top notch cup of joe at home.

I've had Filter Coffee Machines, I've had a Gaggia Espresso Machine, I've tried pre pack one cup filters, I've purchased (and let get dusty) a Tassimo pod machine. It's become a running joke in this house and sometime I find myself browsing the coffee machines just to give my other half mischief.

Right now I think I'm sorted; it's taken some soul searching and a little bit of compromise but my coffee options are now as follows;

At home for a large mug of coffee - French Press (cafetiere)
At home before the gym - Espresso made in a Moka Pot
At work - Aerobie Aeropress (a wonderful bit of kit)

So right now you're probably wondering why I'm rambling on about coffee in this review. Well it's to give a little insight in to just how much I love coffee. And therefore why coffee and beer in combination is fast becoming another love of mine!

I've already reviewed The Kraken by Time and Tide (probably sits as one of my favourite three beers I've tried this year) and also sampled and really enjoyed Common Grounds by Magic Rock. But one beer that has been shooting through Instagram like a hyperactive child after three double espressos, is Evil Twin's Imperial Biscotti Break.

Evil Twin Brewing has a fascinating history that I'll cover in more depth in a later post. But in short, Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergso operates Evil Twin, a phantom brewery, out of Brooklyn New York. He is the twin brother of Mikkel Borg Bjergso, the owner of Copenhagen based phantom brewery Mikkeller. Reports suggest that they are not on the best of terms but if this means they keep pushing each other to produce amazing beers then well, keep squabbling boys!

I had not, until today, tried any Evil Twin or Mikkeller beers but with the excitement around Imperial Biscotti Break and my new found love of coffee paired with beer, I had to try get me a some. So after a bit of internet searching I finally picked up a can of Imperial Biscotti Break as part of a beer haul that I ordered from Beer Gonzo. On this chilly Autumnal afternoon it was finally time so see what all the fuss was about.

Well the fuss was right.

From the moment you crack open the one pint can, the smell of coffee rises up to hit your nose. It's a beautiful jet black and with a heavy pour it produces a lovely looking mocha coloured head. On closer sniff, the malts bring depth to the aroma with the hints of vanilla dancing in the background.

It has a smooth mouth feel that, if you forget the 11.5% ABV, almost encourages swigging rather than sipping.

The taste is big, bold and everything that I had hoped for. It does have a sweetness that I wouldn't normally go for in a beer, but this doesn't last long in the mouth. The bitterness that then comes through strongly balances beautifully with the coffee, vanilla and almonds and the overall taste is like nothing I've had in a beer before. I've seen lots of people comparing this to a tiramisu and this is spot on, especially in terms of the after taste that pleasingly stays around for some time.

I've recently tried another beer that attempted to marry unusual flavours that was, on that occasion, unsuccessful in my eyes.

Evil Twin on the other hand have worked wonders here. Imperial Biscotti Break is a beer unlike any I've tasted before but one I'd definitely have again. It's a million miles away from a session beer; this is a drink to be enjoyed on it's own, savoured until the last drop.

If you see this for sale and you like beer and coffee, snap it up and give it a go. It should not be missed.



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