HOME > Chowhound > Beer >


Chocolate Beer?

So, Miller is making chocolate beer ...

On the web, beer people are yawning because chocolate beer is an old story.

So what chocolate beer is good, if any?

What food would you eat with chocolate beer?

The Miller beer I don't think is available yet.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. It doesn't really have chocolate in it, IIRC, but Brooklyn's Black Chocolate Stout is amazing. I've had Sam Adams Chocolate Bock only once and didn't think it was that great.

    1. I've had a Belgian chocolate beer (Florisgaarden from Huyghe, I believe). It had a particular taste that you'd probably either love or hate. I found it a bit artificial tasting, personally. As far as food go, I'd say to either drink it alone or have it with dessert. Worth trying though, just for the experience.

      1. I don't really understand the need to actually add chocolate to beer (which Miller (SEE POST), Young's (Double Chocolate Stout) and others have done) since some well known beer styles impart a natural and non-cloying chocolate taste. Victory Storm King Stout or Ayinger Altbairisch Dunkel are good examples. Both have a deep roasty, coffee, and faintly chocolate taste.

        Adding actual chocolate to beer misses the boat in my opinion. Its sort of like adding:

        1) chocolate flavor to coffee
        2) apple flavor to German Riesling
        3) cherry flavor to Pinot Noir

        As many of us already know the beauty of the above products is that they all subtly include the above listed flavors already (along with many others).

        Having tasted Young's Double Chocolate Stout and a few others which have had chocolate added all that I recall tasting was chocolate (I can have a Lindt bar for that). That may be pleasant to some but it just isn't beer in my opinion because it masks the true nature of the product to a great degree.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Chinon00

          I agree it is not necessary to add chocolate and/or coffee to beer since you can get similar (if not dead on) flavors from using the right combination of malts. I think its pretty hacky personally.

          My theory is that its more of a marketing thing for most brewers. Although I also feel that it is a crutch for some brewers who can't or won't take the time to figure it out with malt.

          Even though I don't drink it, many rave over Rogue Chocolate Stout.

          1. re: LStaff

            I love the Rogue. It does have some actual chocolate in it though. I don't personally feel as though it's hacky but to each his own. I also like Young's and there is chocolate in that blend also.

        2. I've always enjoyed the occassional glass of Young's Double Chocolate Stout. I have always wondered how it would taste as a float with some vanilla ice cream.
          Some may cringe at the thought but I enjoy dropping a hershey kiss or other small piece of chocolate in a Guiness or other stout. It doesn't add much flavor to the beer and at the end you are left with a tasty bit of chocolate.

          1 Reply
          1. re: viperlush

            Do it! It's delicious. Placed a scoop of Haagen Daas Vanilla in the very same beer and it was great. Also, next spring watch for Abita Strawberry, place a scoop of vanilla in that and sit outside for a while! Mmmm...

          2. Most "chocolate" beers and ales are not made with actual chocolate. They are called "chocolate" because chocolate and dark chocolate malts are used. These are malts that are roasted to the color of chocolate and may have some similar flavors to chocolate/cocoa. Only a few have actual chocolate nibs added and this is usually in very small amounts.

            Hopefully Jim Dorsch will chime in so he can give you some detailed info.

            3 Replies
            1. re: JMF

              The Miller product which is the topic of this post is made with actual chocolate (See link above).

              1. re: Chinon00

                Yes I know, cocoa nibs, but I wonder exactly what proportions are used and is this beer a regular lager or a bock?

              2. re: JMF

                JMF, that is mostly true, but some brewers actually do use chocolate. Rogue's Chocolate Stout has chocolate in it. (and it is awesome)

              3. oh god, I love young's chocolate stout on a cold day. It's not made with chocolate...and hopefully miller's new beer isnt either?

                with chocolate stout I like to eat stew or something really hearty, I don't usually eat something sweet with it. Don't know if that is recommended or not

                  1. Sorry, but to the contrary, Young's Double Chocolate Stout IS made with real dark chocolate along with chocolate essence and chocolate malt. The bottom line being; what difference does it make? If it's good, and it most certainly is, it's good.

                    9 Replies
                    1. re: Harp00n

                      I guess for me the question arises, is it beer and where does one draw the line? "[R]eal dark chocolate along with chocolate essence" is wonderful but is that what one should want from beer? Many may not agree but for me beer has a definition that doesn't include the actual addition of something so profound as real chocolate. The line gets blurred IMHO. And yes it certainly is "good". How couldn't it be?

                      1. re: Chinon00

                        Of course it's beer.

                        Beer defined as yeast, hops, barley and water is relatively recent. In the middle ages, gruit was made with all kinds of herbs and flavorings.

                        Is witbier not beer? It's got orange peel and coriander. How about saisons, with additions including fruit, ginger, and other spices? Is lambic not beer?

                        1. re: Josh

                          The Reinheitsgebot dates to 1516. Is that "recent"?

                          1. re: Gary Soup

                            That's German beer law. There are beer traditions in many other countries. Adding other ingredients for flavor to the basic barley wort is acceptable IMO, there are centuries-old traditions of this. In North America, think about spruce and pumpkin ales. Spruce was used in the 18th century when hops were scarce or expensive due to British taxation.
                            American macro-lagers are all in violation of the Reinheitsgebot since they use grain other than barley. Budweiser may suck but I think it is beer.

                            1. re: Gary Soup

                              Considering that beer dates back to ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, we're talking 8th millenium BC here, then yes, 1516 is indeed recent. Monasteries in Europe were producing beer in the 700s. There's a brewery in Italy, in fact, that brews a beer using an ancient Egyptian recipe which calls for no hops, and instead uses myrrh as the bittering agent.

                              While it may be true that the German's law is rather strict, even they play around by sometimes smoking the malt to make rauchbier. But I don't see why the Germans should be singled out as the de facto definition of beer, when Belgium's brewing tradition is at least as old and has always embraced the usage of herbs, spices, and fruits.

                              1. re: Josh

                                Agreed.... not only is German beer making tradition very recent... German beer is not the best. I will take Belgian, Czech or even English ales over German beer any time.

                                1. re: Eat_Nopal

                                  I don't think any particular school of beermaking is best. There are many legitimate ways to make beer, and we all have our preference.

                                  1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                    Exactly... but somewhere along road... somehow people in the U.S. dubbed Germany as The King of Beers... maybe a subliminal message from the Budweiser folks???

                          2. re: Chinon00

                            You can count me among those who would say that the use of adjuncts disqualifies it from being called "beer". But then, I'm opposed to the designated hitter and night baseball, too.

                        2. Well going back to your original post, if I may, you mention "chocolate in coffee". I don't want or need anything in my coffee or my tea. As a matter of fact,I like them both strong and black. Does that mean that anyone who wants cream and/or sugar is any less discriminating than myself? I think not. It's what they like. My tastes run heavily towards Irish dry stouts,IPA's and double IPA's but if my barmates want to quaff a Lambic or a 'Waggle Dance"(shudder)it's no steam off my anchor:)

                          1. For me I guess it is specifically about chocolate beer as an idea. I really enjoy Witbier and have been seen even adding a squeeze of lemon. And I'm also a fan of Pumpkin beer. These and other beers to me seem to make gastronomic sense where chocolate beer doesn't. In the cause of Witbier, the herbs and lemon act to compliment the beer's natural flavor IMHO without obscuring it. And as for Pumpkin beer, as I understand, pumpkin starch is used during the fermentation process so it isn't beer flavored with pumpkin but is actual "pumpkin" beer.
                            I don't think that you can ferment chocolate and for me chocolate as a flavoring seems to compete too much with the base beer. I guess for me it's a balance thing.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: Chinon00

                              I can comprehend what you are saying, but I disagree.

                              Chocolate and stout/porter is one of the most natural pairings I know of. I was first told of this combo by Greg Koch, Stone Brewing's CEO, who suggested chocolate mousse was a good pairing with their smoked porter. I was pretty skeptical of this suggestion, but I tried it and was totally blown away at how well the flavors complemented one another.

                              A few months after that, at a monthly wine tasting group I attend, I brought a selection of 6 stouts, and we sampled them with chocolate in a few different forms. Everyone was surprised at how well the pairing worked.

                              In a way, this is touching a sore spot with me, because I find what I think of as the "beer fundamentalist" mindset so alien to my way of thinking. The truth is that beer has been made with a lot of different ingredients over the millenia, and limiting our appreciation based on whether or not it adheres to arbitrary rules doesn't make sense to me.

                              Honey might be considered verboten, but good honey beers can offer amazing complexity and very dry finishes, such as Biere de Miel (forgot the producer, either Fantome or Dupont). Considering some of the great results I've experienced from experimentation, I'm all for whatever anyone wants to try, just so long as the end product tastes good.

                              To bring it around to your conclusion, I wouldn't support a chocolate IPA, or chocolate wheat beer. But in the case of stout and porter, the coffee-like flavors from the dark-roasted malts make it work.

                              1. re: Josh

                                Sure when it comes to pairing certain beers with chocolate I agree with you. I agree that stouts and porters have natural coffee-like flavors that marry well chocolate. But do I want a glass of lamb flavored Cabernet Sauvignon?

                                1. re: Chinon00

                                  I think we understand everyone's opinion. Can we agree that chocolate beers are true beers, and that some of us are OK with chocolate in the beer and some aren't? (I.e., we agree to disagree!)

                                  1. re: Jim Dorsch

                                    I will agree to agree to disagree.

                            2. absolutely the BEST chocolate-flavored beer i have ever had is YOUNG'S DOUBLE CHOCOLATE stout. this thing is amazing. i mean, no joke, this thing drinks like a chocolate shake. wondeful. nice little bit of coffee going on there too, to counter the intense sweetness of the malt. abosultely beautiful. Young's old OATMEAL STOUT isnt bad, either. not that im all about YOUNG'S in general or anything, but that double chocolate is really out of this world. can not recommend it enough. please pleas please give it a shot.

                              7 Replies
                              1. re: ben61820

                                No need to apologize for being an admirer Of Young's "Ben".
                                IMO they have the best ale & stout line-up of the larger Brit breweries. Samuel Smith has it's fans but make mine a Young's oatmeal stout.

                                1. re: Harp00n

                                  Young's is one of my favorites, but Fuller's cannot be denied.

                                  1. re: Josh

                                    Well Josh,it cetainly can't be denied that ESB, "1845" & London Pride are among my favorites. I just think there's little more breadth to the Young's line-up IMHO. :)

                                    1. re: Harp00n

                                      One of my favorite styles is porter, Fuller's London Porter in particular. I don't know if Young's makes one. Another good Fuller's is the Vintage Ale.

                                      1. re: Josh

                                        You know, I've never had Fuller's London Porter so thanks for the tip Josh. How does it compare to Samuel Smith's Taddy Porter, which I like a lot? If you ever have the opportunity to visit Dublin don't miss The Porterhouse. It is, IMO, the best brewpub in all of Ireland & G.B. Their Plain Porter and Oyster Stout are really first rate.

                                        1. re: Harp00n

                                          I find Fuller's porter less sweet than Samuel Smith's. It's got a slightly more pronounced bitterness and roasted flavor, or maybe the lesser sweetness causes those flavors to be more pronounced. Taddy Porter is a great beer, no doubt. There are few English ales I don't enjoy. I recently had one from Adnams that was simply amazing - Broadside Ale, I believe.

                                          1. re: Josh

                                            I love all kinds of brews from here and afar, Josh. I have to say, even while being an unrepentant Fenian bastard, that the Brits fiddle the sweetest tunes. I've have indeed quaffed a few Adnams as well as Hopback Summer Lightnings, Swale's Pale Ales, Norfolk Nogs and that great session ale Shepherd Neames Spitfire which is unfortunately not available is The States. Shepherd Neames,in Faversham,Kent, is England oldest Brewery and is still privately owed.

                              2. XOACOA of Barcelone chocolate beer with a grilled cheese sandwich.

                                4 Replies
                                1. re: laur76

                                  i just googled that beer and find absolutely nothing. too bad, id love to give it a shot. you sure thats the name?

                                      1. re: laur76

                                        this is a great chocolate shop, visited it in BCN this June. I wonder if their beer (Birracoa) is available in the US? [Wow, what an annoying website.]