Midtfyns nr.0998 Imperial Chili Stout
Type: Imperial Stout
Yesterday (Nov. 3rd 2013) Midtfyns Bryghus released four imperial stouts to commemorate the closing of their original brewery where they brewed 1000 batches. The beers that will be released are numbers 0997, 0998, 0999, and number 1000. They are each different, licorice and fennel, chili, bourbon, and the final beer brewed in their Broby facility a walnut and walnut leaf imperial stout. To kick off the week of these limited edition beers I chose number 0998, the chili imperial. What can I say about chili beers? We have had a somewhat standoffish relationship over the years. I have had some very good beers that contain chili, but it is usually amongst a list of many other ingredients. Mostly my experience with just chili in beers as a main ingredient has been just overwhelming chili presence and a shocking heat. Just something about hot beer throws me for a loop. That being said I am looking forward to trying Midtfyns Chili Imperial Stout. I really like their dark beers, and am confident they can make it work.
Pours an extremely dark brown with a massive, I am talking towering, dark tan head. It was more fingers high then I can count too. The nose is quite stereotypical for an imperial stout. Dark roasted malts and licorice, although a bit toned back. The reason for this is presumably the little spicy chili hint that sneaks in to tickle your nostrils. The smell is very reminiscent of a chili licorice candy I had once at a family holiday party. I always start these imperial stouts out colder then suggested, just to experience the flavor change as they warm. This one I started at 14 C (57F). As expected cold the chili is quite reserved, a mere tingle on the tongue and a subtle heat on the backend of the taste. At this temperature the dark chcolatey tones dominate with a nice snap of black licorice in the aftertaste and a warmth of chili that really makes the two flavors pop. As I suspected a little warmth brings the licorice and the chili forward in both the flavor profile and the nose. Not aggressively so, but still quite a bit more distinct. The chocolate smooths out into a more earthy roasted coffee that the chili continues to really brighten up. The only thing I didn't like was a bit too much carbonation for my taste and the body could have used a little boost. The first was taken care of by letting the beer sit and warm anyway, and the second is a minor nit just to pick. In my opinion this beer has just about the perfect amount of heat. This beer was the one in the series I was second most apprehensive about (licorice is my kryptonite), but I am beyond pleasantly surprised by how much I liked this beer. If this is a sign of things to come, then I am really looking forward to the rest, and yes even licorice.