Sunday, December 3, 2017

2017 Advent Beer 3: Saugatuck Brewing Cocanuck Stout

Good heavens, another sweet beer-it must be getting close to Christmas!

Day 3 brings us a Canadian beer with a tropical ingredient, brewed by our friends at Saugatuck Brewing in Michigan. Now, I consider myself a fan of Saugatuck, brewing as they do the delightfully surprising Blueberry Maple Stout from the Advent Calendar of two years ago, as well as the amazing Neapolitan Milk Stout, inheritor to the mantle left by the long-absent Neapolean and current emperor of dessert beers.

Now, I have no idea what prompted the Canadian content in this brilliantly punny name and label, coconut trees being anything but a native plant in our native land, but Cocanuck Stout is bold about its added ingredient. The coconut is evident right from the first sniff, yet almost subtle, or perhaps it just seems that way because most of us don't anticipate coconut in our dark beers (although it is not completely without precedent, as Brewsters was selling a Hawaiian Coconut Porter earlier this year as well).

Like the rest of Saugatuck's stouts and porters, this is a thick, dark, malty affair, and the chocolatey notes you expect from those roasted malts make a grand complement to the coconut, not unlike a Bounty bar.  And the coconut's naturally nutty bitterness comes through as well, offsetting the sweetness, but only a little.

Between the sweetness and the 7.5% ABV, I wouldn't be too prone to have two Cocanuck Stouts back to back, but as a liquid dessert, I see it being indispensable. Well, assuming you can find them outside of the calendar, that is.

I know it's unlikely, but I kind of hope there is another Saugatuck offering in this calendar. If not, well, there is always next year!

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