Last night, Steve and I attended a pumpkin party. All food and alcohol was required to be pumpkin-based. And while I copped out a bit and simply made some pumpkin snickerdoodles, (desserts were definitely the easier route to take) there were some exceptional entrees and side dishes as well.
I had a large bowl of pumpkin chili with pumpkin sour cream that was fantastic. I know my friend Sara has lots of leftovers if she reads this and is willing to share, I would be happy to help her out. Another friend made an exceptional pumpkin risotto. Had he arrived earlier and I hadn’t already been shoving my face full of pumpkin delights for a few hours, I definitely would have made a huge dent in this risotto. And yet one other friend brought pumpkin ravioli with and bacon and apples in a brown butter sauce. This was so good, that even 2 hours later, when the bacon fat and butter had congealed in the bottom, we were rescuing ravioli with our fingers and popping them into our mouths.
This is the second year for this pumpkin themed party and it was definitely a success. However, I can’t possibly review a pumpkin beer. We had so many, that even the best ones tended to blend into each other as the night wore one. So, today I will be reviewing Canadian Breakfast Stout. We cracked this beer open to celebrate our friend Ryan’s first sub 3 hour marathon that he had just run that morning.
For more information about CBS, please check out my previous post regarding our overnight stay at the Founders brewery in 32 degree weather in order to obtain 2 bottles of this delicious elixir. http://blog.hopbunnies.com/2011/10/founders-canadian-breakfast-stout-release/
Founders has a partnership with a local Michigan maple syrup producer. BLiS takes their Grade A maple syrup and ages it in Kentucky Bourbon Barrels that Founders owns. Once the maple syrup is removed, Founders then cave-ages their breakfast stout in these barrels. The entire process, from brewing to bottling, takes about 3 years, which is why this beer is so rare. We were able to attend the release at the brewery last October and, therefore, able to purchase 2 bottles each. Not only is this beer rare, but it tastes amazing, making it our favorite beer to crack open for special events.
CBS is a thick, dark, smooth beer. There are hints of chocolate and coffee, in addition to bourbon and maple syrup. The maple syrup takes a bit of the booziness away from the flavor and adds a hint of sweetness. The syrup does not overwhelm the other flavors, and the sweetness is minimal, which makes this a well-balanced beer. I don’t really know what else to add to this review. This is absolutely one of the best beers that I have ever had, maybe the best. If you have the chance to every try one, you need to. I would be willing to pay a good amount of money for a fresh CBS. Obviously,I was willing to sit outside from 5:00AM - 12 noon in 30 degree weather in order to have the opportunity to buy 2 bottles. And I would definitely do it all over again.