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Herevana – Emporium – Cuppa Chai Cha

Cuppa Chai Cha – I like a Chai. I like a Stout. What could go wrong?

Emporium Brewing are based in  Kaikoura, Canterbury, 🇳🇿 where they brew the Cuppa Chai Cha with an ABV of 9.2% and 50IBU in the style that is Imperial Stout. the 375ml bottle is 2.7 standard drinks in NZ.

The aroma is really unusual, cardamom spice came to mind.

A murky brown pour of a beer with a creamy vanilla head. The aroma in the glass is more lemon like, but there is that lovely Chai spice, really unusual and quite fine.

The taste is extraordinary. I get nutmeg, cloves, and cardamon in no order.

Oddly odd but also oddly delightful at the same time.

I like that this has a big nose on it, and you get that spice hit before you get the liquid version, that has just the right amount if mouthfeel presence. There is no surprise dryness in this or any alcohol tang that you might think you’d get at 9.2%

As it warms it just gets bolder and nothing gives way or stands aside. A really memorable beer this.

The Pdubyah-o-Meter rates this as 9 on the arbitrary number scale. I think there’s much more clever in this than chucking in a bunch of chai spices. The base Stout is lovely and the spices bring out and are forward flavours rather than bit-players in what is a remarkable and remarkably enjoyable beer.

Music: New music from Elbow – their album ‘Flyng Dream 1’

Herevana beers are those I drink at home, I’m not at some beer festival, like, for instance, Beervana, but am just in my kitchen, usually, dining room table, sometimes, or outside, occasionally, where I can take an average picture and write in real time about the beer that I’ve invested in, both in a monetary and emotional way.

Philip himself.

Imperial Stout aged in bourbon barrels and then spiked with Chalala Chai tea spice.

A bourbon barrel aged stout made during the first lockdown, and bottled during the second! We used local coffee from Star Roast in the boil to to increase the depth of roast character. The beer was then aged in bourbon barrels from the states which gave it a lovely vanillin character. We then took it one step further and added a chai mix from local tea makers Chalala to give it a wonderful spicy aroma

Brewers Notes

Stout – Imperial Flavored / Pastry

The “Flavored Imperial Stout”, or “Flavored Double Stout” is an intensely-flavored, big, very dark reddish-brown to black colored ale with a wide range of flavor balances and with a clear flavoring element. Roasty-burnt malt with deep dark or dried fruit flavors, and a warming, bittersweet finish. American versions have more bitterness, roasted character, and finishing hops, while the English varieties, or “Russian Imperial Stout” (RIS), reflect a more complex specialty malt character and a more forward ester profile. It also feature an harmonious marriage of the additive and beer, but still recognizable as a beer. The additive character should be evident but in balance with the beer. (For example: fruits, spices, herbs, vegetables, coffee, honey, chocolate, maple sirup, chilies, nuts, vanilla, liquor – BUT not including Smoked malt, barrel-aging or a Sour element resulting from the brewing process). In the case of over-the-top, highly sweet, adjunct-heavy stouts reminiscent of a liquid version of cake or pastry, the name “Dessert Stout” or “Pastry Stout” if often used.


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