Today is a day for doing things in an unconventional order. For example, under normal circumstances, I wouldn't fortify my morning coffee with a generous portion of egg nog liqueur (the Kirkland stuff from Costco, highly recommended!), but because it is the first day of Christmas vacation, I did.
For another, I am imbibing today's Advent beer well before supper, because Audrey and I are going out for our anniversary tonight. Nothing fancy, because she just isn't into that this year, so when I gave her a list of neighbourhood options, she went for Soda Jerks, which I pretty much threw in to round out the lineup, but which she thought looked fun.
This makes for some synchronicitous timing, since today's beer is Trade Day Cuban Coffee Stout, a style which, nationality notwithstanding, is often contra-indicated for many over-40 drinkers after about 8:00, sadly. It is a product of Back Forty Beer Co. out of Gadsden, Alabama.
It pours a dark black, with some off-white head, and the coffee scent wafts right out of the glass, which sometimes even happens with non-coffee stouts. Closer nasal inspection brings out toasted malts, a bit of chocolate, and even a hint of burnt toast.
The coffee taste is bold and right up-front, followed closely by the bready maltiness. It has an extremely smooth finish, with just the right amount of bitterness to tie things up at the end. Like a lot of American craft beers, Trade Day doesn't proclaim their abv on the label, so I was surprised to see it is a robust 8%, well above the 6-7% I was expecting. It is a good representation of the style, but I will still probably tend towards Yukon Brewing's Midnight Sun. But not, you know, tonight.