Horchata, also known as that drink that occurs when the planets align and all becomes wonderful in the universe, is a milky drink that is popular and traditional in Latin American communities.
It is made with a variety of ingredients, but usually has at it’s core rice, almond, milk, cinnamon, and vanilla, all boiled together and served cold. God, it’s good. Think of a less chewy, more nuanced version of egg nog. Much better than egg nog, too.
As for making it into a beer? Blame Wayne Wambles and the crew at Cigar City Brewing in Tampa. Sure, others have made a beer based off of Horchata (Speciality/Blonde, 7% ABV), but they don’t have quite the Latin American pedigree as Cigar City does.
You look at this beer, and it’s a pilsner. Clear, pale yellow, and inviting. When you smell it, however, that’s then the giant amounts of cinnamon hit. They hit big. There’s really no smelling anything else, the cinnamon is that strong.
When you taste it, it’s incredibly soft and creamy. There’s a lactose-like creaminess to the beer. That sort, velvety texture is great when mixing with the cinnamon and vanilla flavors in the beer. along with a wonderful malt sweetness. I’ve never seen a pale beer as smooth and milky as this before. Those qualities are usually reserved for porters on nitro.
It’s very distinctive. And quite a lot of beer drinkers, especially IPA fans, would not be overly receptive to it. But drinkers looking for a novel example of what craft beer can do will really enjoy it.
I’d love to have a tap of it installed in my house.
Drink Florida Craft,