While I know that it is Spanish for grandmother, when I hear the word abuela, I can only think of In The Heights and other music written by Lin-Manuel Miranda.
It’s a word he uses quite frequently, to the point where I think it is a significantly larger part of the non-Hispanic cultural lexicon than it ever used to be.
Which is fun, I love when cultures meld together. There’s always something fun to be gained when you step outside what you’ve always known.
This definitely goes for food as well. And while Americanized quite frequently, I am always on the lookout to try new foods from different cultures.
Sometimes they’re still just outside the cultural zeitgeist like kimchi, and sometimes they are openly welcomed with both arms like flan.
Flan, best known in the Latin American context, is a custard dessert that was given to us by the heavens in order to make us happy. It’s custard and carmel and it’s amazing and I could eat my weight in it if I had a lactose-powered death wish.
But here we are with flan, and flan flavored things, including flan-flavored coffee. That is the power house behind Abuela’s Nightcap (Imperial Stout, 11% ABV), an imperial stout from Copperpoint Brewery in Boynton Beach that combines these flavors with caramel and vanilla to make one heck of an amazing beer.
As a side note, getting flavors not from the items themselves, but from coffees that are flavored like them, is a technique I’ve seen quite a bit and I think it’s absolutely brilliant. Not only does the coffee grab a lot of those amazing delectable sweet flavors, but it also brings the deep roasty goodness of the coffee as well.
And that’s how it is with Abuela’s Nightcap. It’s big and thick and dark and chewy, with a wonderful caramel custard nose that is a beauty to envelop yourself in.
With the flavors, having that additional vanilla and caramel on top of the flan coffee, doubles down on the flan qualities a bit more. The coffee itself sits to the back a tad at first while you enrobe yourself in those sweet milky candy rich notes.
They will dissipate slightly to allow the coffee and the dark, almost charred, roasted malt a chance to show up, but those effects are relegated more to the rear whereas the other adjuncts are the ones that takes center stage. The malt is really set back to the rhythm section in this beer, and everybody’s watching the lead singer Flan.
I don’t know who this abuela is, but this is an abuela whose house I need to go to for dinner on a much more frequent basis if this is the kind of stuff that she is serving. And it is wonderful to be able to enjoy all those different flavors together as one.
While listening to In The Heights. Again.
Drink Florida Craft,
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