I am, personally, not fond when craft beer enthusiasts use the term ‘whale’ to describe a beer they have been hunting after for a long time.
It’s Moby Dick. It compares the beer to a monstrous beast of a mammal for whom the pursuit of and killing of becomes the single-minded obsession of a maniacal madman and the cause of death for his entire crew (did you really need a spoiler alert?).
I prefer the term ‘unicorn.’ It compares the beer to a majestic creature that could never be captured but would always be admired for its beauty and cunning.
As a beer enthusiast, I
have had three great unicorn beers. My top is Westvleteren 12, a trappist ale from Belgium. I’m never going to have this beer. I have pretty much come to that conclusion.
Finally, the third unicorn on my list was Funky Buddha’s legendary Maple Bacon Coffee Porter. The first time my wife and I went to Funky Buddha (and had a tour with the ever-awesome Adrian), I heard about this beer. And I wanted this beer.
I never thought I would be able to get it, and I unfortunately had to miss this year’s Maple Bacon Coffee Porter festival, which looked to be quite momentous. So, pretty much my chance this year was lost.
But, because John and Taylor at Funky Buddha are incredible people, I was able to obtain my first bottle of Maple Bacon Coffee Porter (Porter, 6.4% ABV, 35 IBU).
When this beer is poured, it has a big roasted coffee aroma. It’s really big. Once it sits for a bit, the sweetness from the maple comes around in the bouquet as well.
Tasting it, the first thing you notice is the coffee. It’s unmistakeably coffee, with that light sweetness from the maple syrup. Luckily, the maple flavor isn’t cloying. It’s more of an accent that comes on quick, disappears for a little bit, then hangs around on the palate afterward. The bacon is the only thing that I had to hunt around for.
It also, as my beautiful wife said, has a big, dark chocolate flavor from the malt. That, plus the coffee, contribute to a noticeable bitterness in the beer. But it’s not a spicy hop bitterness. it’s a rounded, mellow, dark bitterness.
Basically, this beer is a dicey dive sort of roadside diner in a bottle. It belongs on a breakfast table with pancakes, a side of bacon, and a cigarette (sorry, that’s the image I get). As of yesterday, it was still on tap at Funky Buddha, so I would try to get there as soon as you can to try some.
Because I’m definitely not sharing any of mine.
Drink Florida Craft,