International Stout Day, aka Enrique’s First Drunk Blog Post

I’m not quite sure what this says about me, but I was REALLY looking forward to today.  A few weeks ago, I was at Tapwerks for lunch.  This Bricktown ale house and cafe has 212 beers on tap, so it has come to serve as a surrogate for Gallagher’s back in Kalamazoo, which boasts over 400 beers. (tap and bottle combined)  Anyway, my server that day mentioned that November 3rd was International Stout Day, and explained some of the things they had planned.  I immediately put it on my calendar.  Again, I’m not sure what that says about me, but I digress.

So the day finally arrived, and it proved to be a great day for two reasons:

A) Jasmine, who used to work at Bricktown Brewery, was working so I was able to catch up with her and see how she liked her new digs.

2) Stout, stout, and more stout.

I have a few friends who say they “like their coffee the way they like their men: strong and black.”  I’m trying to figure a way to reword that so I can use it when referring to stout beers…  “I like my beer the way I like my women: in a frosted glass.”  Nope, that makes no sense, and would be very uncomfortable for her.  “I like my beer the way I like my women: cheap and on a coaster.”  Well, that’s just plain inappropriate.  “I like my beer the way I like my women: at happy hour with a bowl of chili.”  Close, but still needs work.  *whew*  This is harder than I thought.  Maybe I should have another beer and work on it some more…

Tapwerks had four featured stouts, along with a special menu to go along with the brews they featured: 

THE STOUTS –

Coop Ale Works: Jack Daniels Barrel Aged Imperial Stout. Raspberry stout. Cherry stout.

Redbud Brewing: Arbor (chocolate imperial stout)

Choc Brewing: Winter Stout

Marshall Brewing: Black Dynamite. A stout dry hopped with Citra and Cascade.

FOOD MENU –

Guineas beef stew

Murphy’s Stout Chili

Belhaven Stout Fish & Chips

Old Rasputin Braised Pulled Pork Slider w/ stout BBQ sauce

Rogue Chocolate Stout Cupcakes w/ stout mocha ganache

I started with the Jack Daniels Stout by Coop Ale Works.  It was delicious.  But how can you go wrong when you combine the yummy goodness that IS stout beer with Jack Daniels barrel aging? 

Next I tried Coop’s raspberry version of the stout.  It was good, but I preferred the Jack version.

After that, I went for Marshall’s Black Dynamite.  Maybe it was the hops, but I was pretty disappointed.  To the point that I asked my server to take it back.  Sorry, Marshall.

I replaced it with Redbud’s Arbor.  Again, it was good but missing something.  I can’t put my finger on what, but I much preferred Coop’s stouts.  I paired these with a bowl of Murphy’s Stout Chili, which was absolutely delicious.  It didn’t hurt matters that the weather outside is cold and perfect for chili.

I’m sad that it will be another 365 days until International Stout Day returns. (yes, 365.  Next year is a leap year.)  The good news is I can have stout any day between now and next November.  And you know what?  I think I just might.

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