Name: Imperial Cafe Racer
Brewery: Devil’s Peak & Fierce Brewing Co.
Country: South Africa (CT) and Scotland
Rating: 4 / 5
Guys, Winter is not coming… it’s here. And nothing beats a dark, rich brew at a fire when it’s bloody freezing. Luckily Devil’s Peak have been experimenting up a storm and alongside Fierce Brewing Co. in Scotland, they made a Coffee Vanilla Porter.
One random day I got a “drop” at work which was a beautifully packaged can, note and some awesome coffee beans. I saved the can for a particularly chilly night and got to it (luckily I had 2 more cans too).
The initial aroma is amazing. All manners of Vanilla, Coffee, Latte… I really wanted to bottle the aroma and sell it as perfume. Simply gorgeous. It pours opaque and dark – not quite matte black, but rich dark brown with some cream coloured head. I thought it could have better head on the pour as well as retention; it dissipated pretty quickly.
The flavour is initially quite heavy but it settles after the first sip or two. Honestly though, at 9%, I would have been surprised if I didn’t get that alcohol kick upfront. I let it warm up a little (in my hands as well as naturally) and that vanilla really benefits from being a little warmer. The complexity of the brew really shines when it’s not too cold.
Overall, it’s a pretty damn wonderful brew. I have seen others say it got a little sweet towards the end, but I really didn’t find that. I actually enjoyed it more and more as it went down (another 9% trick maybe :-p) but I don’t think I’d easily have 2 or 3. This is not session territory.
Since DP have been experimenting (explorer series and now the collab) this is by far their best “dark” beer in my opinion. I really didn’t like the Christmas Cake and Choc-Cherry stouts. They were horrid. This porter has all manners of class and sophistication to it. Keep experimenting!