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Beer Styles

Chocolate Beer

Few flavors are as universally celebrated as chocolate. From ancient civilizations who drank fermented chocolate to rich, decadent and refined chocolate desserts, the cultural significance of chocolate cannot be understated. Like chocolate, beer too is a celebrated, versatile tradition that spans the globe. American craft brewers have embraced the combination of both with a variety of different approaches and applications to create chocolate flavored beers. While many beers showcase chocolatey flavors without actually having chocolate as an ingredient, chocolate beers use the ingredient itself to offer a uniquely balanced beer experience that can be appreciated by beer connoisseurs and those with sweet tooths alike.

Chocolate Beer

Chocolate beer can be an ale or lager that benefits from the addition of any type of chocolate or cocoa. Traditionally added to porters, stouts and brown ales, where the grain bill better complements the confectionery ingredient, it can be added to other styles as well. Chocolate character can range from subtle to overt, but any chocolate beer is generally expected to offer some balance between beer and bon-bon. The style can vary greatly in approach as well as flavor profile depending on the brewer.

Chocolate Flavored Beer in America

Known for innovation and pushing boundaries, craft brewers have never met an ingredient they didn’t like, or at least an ingredient they didn’t believe could be expressed in a beer. Chocolate flavored beers offer beer lovers a chance to taste just how versatile craft brewers can be. The use of chocolate in chocolate beers offers yet another example of craft beers culinary compatibility, whether as a pairing or show-stopping course all in itself, a well-crafted chocolate flavored beer is a game changer even for those who don’t generally gravitate towards beer.

While stouts and porters are the most complementary styles to embrace the addition of chocolate, chocolate beers need not stick to the script. Chocolate can be added to all types of beer styles, even beers as light as pale ales. The key for any flavored beer is that the ingredients and flavors it presents are balanced well with the base style of beer. Chocolate flavored beer may seem like an odd concept, but any beer or chocolate lover owes it to themself to give chocolate beer a try.

Helping You Find Your Next Chocolate Flavored Beer

On the hunt for an American craft brewer that offers a chocolate flavored beer? We want to help you find your first or new favorite. Whether you have a craft beer or chocolate fascination, our “Find a Brewery” map is designed to meet your needs.

Finding your first or next favorite beer doesn’t have to stop here. If you are interested in a convenient way to learn more about chocolate beer, or any other kind of beer, sign up to have our newsletter delivered directly to your inbox.

Category: Specialty Beers

Food Pairings

  • Venison Mole
  • Aged Goat Cheeses
  • Raspberry Torte

Glassware & Serving Temperature

Snifter
50-55 °F

Commercial Examples

Commercial Examples

Appearance

Color

Light Brown to Black

Clarity

Brilliant to Opaque

Carbonation (Visual)

Varies

Flavor/Aroma

Alcohol

Varies

Hop

Hop flavor and aroma are lower than might be expected for the style. Under-hopping allows chocolate to contribute to the flavor profile while not becoming excessively bitter. Hop bitterness is very low to medium-low.

Malt

Medium-low to medium-high malt sweetness helps accent cocoa flavors and aromas.

Esters

Can be present.

Phenols

Can be present.

Sensations

Body

Varies

Carbonation

Low to High

Finish Length

Varies

Attenuation

Medium - High

Ingredients

Hops

Varies

Malt

Varies

Water

Varies

Yeast

Lager or Ale

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