Salted Belgian Chocolate Stout. Even the name is a mouthful, so you’d think the beer inside the bottle would be equally as complex. And you’d be right. New Belgium partnered with Perennial Artisan Ales for their latest big bottle, Lips of Faith Series. You know you’re in for a treat with this beer when you read the back of the bottle, which says, “dessert is best poured,” but don’t think this is an over-the-top sweet stout. The Belgian yeast keeps the chocolate in check, and helps create a beer that’s a hell of a lot more complex than your typical chocolate stout.
SBCS (yeah, we’re giving it an acronym), pours dark black with a thin, tan head. The nose is mellow—a bit of roasted chocolate, maybe a little cherry. The first sip is heavy on chocolate, but like I said before, the Belgian yeast keeps it all in check like a helicopter parent at a birthday party. A really pleasant cherry tartness comes in on the backend, and the salt that’s boldly represented on the label doesn’t come into play until the sip is gone—then you taste a hit of salt on your lips.
I gotta say, the whole damn thing is addicting. The rating of this beer kept getting higher and higher as I moved through the bottle. And I don’t think it was because of the high ABV. By the time I was finished with this 22-ounce monster, SBCS had become my favorite in the Lips of Faith series.
Brewery: New Belgium with Perennial Artisan Ales
Location: Fort Collins, Colo.
Availability: Limited, released earlier this month