Monday, August 27, 2012

Review: Vanilla Brown Porter

You might remember this experiment from the way-back machine. I used the two kinds of vanilla beans that I purchased from beanilla. Both beers came from the same primary fermentation. As you can see the one on the right looks better. I don't know why but the one with the Tahitian beans smelled, looked, tasted, and felt better. Again they aged for the same amount of time, on beans prepared in the same way, but the results were drastically different.

(please read more after the break.)

Tahitian Vanilla (Papua New Guinea):

Appearance: The pour was brown/black with a thin white head that dissipated into a creamy cap. Looked nice.

Aroma: Vanilla Beans, light roast, overall pleasant. As it warms almost chocolaty aroma's come from the glass.

Taste: Light flavors, caramel malts, no vanilla, no roast.

Mouth-feel: Smooth but thin, could have used some flaked barley for mouthfeel.

Overall: This was far an away the better beer. If the flavor had matched the aroma it would have been perfect. I hope that when I pop the Russian Imperial Stout it has this aroma.

Bourbon Vanilla (Madagascar):

Appearance: Lackluster, as you can see there was not much foam despite the carbonation you can see on the glass.

Aroma: Vanilla-ish, not as pronounced, no bourbon, no chocolate.

Taste: Acrid and not smooth.

Mouth-feel: a bit thin, thinner than the other. Harsher alcohol.

Overall: This version sucked.

Experiment Results:

This was great fun, I discovered which vanilla beans I'd like to be using in my beer. The answer is Tahitian Beans.
"There are two types of Tahitian vanilla beans; those from Tahiti and those from Papua New Guinea... Vanilla from Tahiti is incredible with an aroma that is floral with tones of ripe fruit. The flavor is rich of chocolate, licorice and caramel. Hand's down our favorite!" - Beanilla review
This is what I got in the nose. Vanilla flavor fades over time, but if I could add these flavors to a beer... I think it would add much to my brews. 

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