Sonoran White Chocolate Ale
Had I known that such a thing as chocolate beer existed, I may have learned to enjoy beer much quicker and easier. My lovely fiance plucked this beauty off of the shelves for me earlier this week and I have been both slightly frightened and anxiously curious to try it. I’m really surprised that I haven’t heard of the Sonoran Brewery before, seeing as it’s been around since 1996, but it might have something to with the fact that they are better known for their root beer than their alcohol (though I just found out that they brew Arizona’s strongest beer: a 20% ALC/VOL ale served in 13oz bottles called the Sonoran 200 – yes, I will be looking for this down the road). It also might have something to do with them not really having their own brewery, rather brewing out of an existing restaurant called the Pinnacle Peak Patio, which is also the Pinnacle Peak Brewing Company. Confusing, sure, but it’s made all better with one whiff of the White Chocolate Ale.
There’s not a whole lot to say about the color, as it’s your typical burnt gold, thin and watery-looking with very little haziness. But do you see that head? That is the best head I have ever seen. Period. Thick, foamy, white, and it stuck around for a good long while, losing very little weight as I let it sit. I took about 10 more photos of it and would put them in my wallet to show off if I had a wallet. Or anyone to show them to. Or if I was a crazy person…I’m not crazy.
Let’s just sit here for a moment and bask in the glory of that fluffy white cap of bubbly goodness.
Alright, once I got over the awesomeness of the foam, actually, even before I became preoccupied with the foam…CHOCOLATE! Seriously, my nose was overcome with chocolate. I buried my nose in the glass and immediately was overcome with warmth and happiness; it was like holding a mug of hot chocolate on a freezing winter night. Only everything was literally in reverse. Either way, the smell was unmistakably white chocolate and cocoa powder with a light hint of wheat.
Once it was in my mouth, it more closely resembled the aftertaste of dark chocolate but in a lighter chocolate. To make more sense, it was a tart white chocolate. And although the ale has quite a thin mouth feel, it never really falls off into the watery category. Closely followed by the immensely pleasurable chocolate is the light wheat again. The best part about this beer was that the chocolate was not overwhelming and allowed it to taste like a hefeweizen infused with chocolate, rather than chocolate dipped in beer.
I would definitely try this again, though with some dessert, like crème brûlée or chocolate covered strawberries or fondue! I’m making myself all excited again just thinking about the wonderful possibilities. This is a mid-winter beer, for 50º and below only and make sure there are going to be plenty of sweet, sweet after-dinner delights to pair with the already sweet company you’ll hopefully have. Cheers!