Brewsday: Sixpoint Brewery 4BEANS

Sixpoint Brewery: 4Beans (10.00%)

Not much story to report on this one. I found out about this beer thanks to Untappd and I was thrilled to see it in a shop. Since then I've been seeing it in more beer stores. I only bought one can since I never had 3BEANS and wasn't sure what to expect. Read along and see my thoughts and feel free to recommend more beers for me to try.

Appearance: The beer was very carbonated and resulted in a thick frosty mocha colored head. The beer itself is a dark brown-black with very slight red undertones that could block the sun and force humanity into a new ice age. By looks alone, this beer will be thick and full of roasted malt flavor. 4

Smell: As you'd expect the nose is dominated by the coffee and vanilla aromas. The vanilla itself isn't overpowering and actually lends a sweetness. The beer is listed as 10% ABV and that is also evident in the nose. This beer is on the boozy side and isn't afraid to show it off. Beneath all of this you can still detect robust amounts of dark grains. 5

Taste: Not as sweet as the smell led me to believe. I always forget how a stout differs from a porter. This has the same feeling of most Russian Imperial Stouts that I've had. You get a flavor rush that is just amazing but you end with an almost astringent after taste. That after taste is fleeting and after that you will feel a slight warming sensation which practically beckons you for a second sip. Think of this beer as a video game. With each taste, you unlock a new level. First you fight this rush of strong coffee which is mixed with the barley and cocoa. As you pass through the coffee level you feel a sweet ting of vanilla. The vanilla reminds you to hang in there and keep playing. The barley returns with full force which creates that aforementioned astringent taste. Finally, as everything is mixing together and you feel like the game is over; in comes alcohol as the secret boss. 4.5

Mouthfeel: It definitely has a thickness about it, but it thins out quickly before you finish the sip. 4BEANS is rather creamy and filling. The carbonation eased up quite nicely and the beer itself is actually rather light on the carbonation front. I barely felt a burp coming. That booze sting packs a mighty punch that you'll feel in your chest. While the high alcohol and chocolate coffee bitterness may slow your drinking hand, the sweetness and texture of the beer will give you cause to raise the glass again. 4.5

Overall: This is supposed to be a coffee beer. Well, its actually a beer and not a soda, so they get points for that. The coffee taste is certainly there and feels like cold brew coffee served black. The soft vanilla does a good job to balance out the bitterness of the coffee and dark malts. The alcohol is very present in this beer. The beer has a lot going on. Coffee, vanilla, cocoa, and of course barley feature prominently in this beer. They work well independently and form a great ensemble once your body has a second to think about what you tasted. I'm a little surprised that this beer was released in the summer time. Then again it'll probably remain during the fall. I've never aged nor tried an aged porter so I might pick up a few more cans to enjoy during the late winter.