Style: English Porter
Availability: limited release, draft only
Pairing: oatmeal cookies, braised pork, bbq, funky cheese, Brooklyn Brewery Carbonade
Last night I had a chance to swing by the Brooklyn Brewery for the premier tasting of their latest in the Brewmaster’s Reserve series, Cookie Jar Porter. Brewmaster Garrett Oliver was on hand to discuss the beer and the tasting room flowed freely with some of brewery’s best drafts: Cookie Jar Porter, Monster ’07, Manhattan Project (a personal favorite), Blast, Brooklyner Weiss and more. The Cookie Jar Porter was paired with the brew’s inspiration, Oatmeal cookies from Feed Your Soul Bakery, as well as select cheese from the Bedford Cheese Shop. Overall it was a great event and good to see the whole Brooklyn Brewery team and NYC craft beer family out enjoying themselves.
Appearance: Draft pours a deep brown color with a dark tan head. Due to the draft pour, there was little to no lacing initially but a slight swirl developed a subtle head and some nice residual lacing.
Smell: Chocolate and roasted malts on the nose. The Marris-Otter malt – a favorite of European beers – comes through as well. Hints of raisin and some pine hop notes
Taste: There’s a surprisingly light body to the Cookie Jar Porter and a more tart flavor than I was expecting. Lots and lots of raisin notes come forward (the source of the tart/sour flavors) as well as chocolate and caramel flavors and some herbal, woody hints from the Willamette hops. As the beer warms, som vanilla and honey flavors develop but they primarily the supporting cast for the chocolate malt.
Mouthfeel: A fine light carbonation and bitterness hit the tongue. Slightly dry finish.
Drinkability: Cookie Jar Porter has a surprisingly light bodied for having such a heavy sounding name. If you like malty beers with tart and bitter notes then this will go down easy. Initially, I thought one was enough but ended up drinking three to hunt down all the flavors. Its not a growler fill, per say, but a pint or two will go down without question.
Overall: The name Cookie Jar Porter threw me for a loop on this one. I was expecting something candy sweet, almost like a Breury 2 Turtle Doves. Instead, this is much more like a traditional English porter (with American Willamette hops rather than the British Fuggles). Once I realigned my palate out of “desert beer mode” I really appreciated all of the subtle tart and bitter notes to be found here. This reminds me a bit of a Dogfish Head Raison D’Etre but with more British Ale elements.
Malts: Floor Malted Maris Otter, British crystal, chocolate and caramel malts.
Other Grains: Whole Golden Oats
Other Sugars: Brown sugar, pureed raisins, wildflower honey
OG: 19% Plato
ABV: 7.8% ABV