Firestone Walker Nitro Merlin Milk Stout has been canned for the first time this month.
Two years ago, Nitro Merlin Milk Stout debuted on draft. Since then, Firestone Walker’s brewmaster Matt Brynildson has been researching options to make it work in cans. Ultimately, the brewery accomplishes this without a nitrogen widget.
“We looked at widgets, but couldn’t find a way to use them without exceeding our specs for total dissolved oxygen in the beer, which ultimately affects freshness and shelf life, so we had to look elsewhere.” -Matt Brynildson
The brewery retrofitted the brewery’s canning line with a liquid nitrogen drip machine. A drop of liquid nitrogen is dropped into the can, which immediately turns into nitrogen gas. The can is filled and sealed, mixing the gas in both the liquid and trapped in the headspace. For best effect, use what Firestone Walker calls the “surge pour” by inverting the can three times and pouring hard.
Flavor. Nitro Merlin has been an incredible beer since its inception. Brynildson and his team ported the beer over to cans beautifully. The beer is smooth and creamy, with just a touch of lactose sweetness and hints of milk chocolate. If you’re into beer pairings, drop a few dollars and order Brown Butter Cookie Company’s “Original” cookies . The pairing is as heavenly as it is addictive. They compliment each other so well, you actually want to dip the cookies in the beer. (And fight your friend/lover/spouse for the last bite and sip.)
Firestone Walker Nitro Merlin Milk Stout is the brewery’s first packaged nitro beer, hitting shelves nationally in January 2018.
Image: Beer Street Journal
Left Hand Brewing made headlines a few years ago when they debuted their milk stout in bottles. At the time they were the first craft brewery to transition to nitro packaging. With the addition of cans to their lineup, many fans thought the lack of milk stout was an oversight. Not anymore Left Hand Milk Stout Nitro cans will debut this year.
One of the most recognizable milk stouts in the world is finally getting the can treatment. The smooth and creamy (and chocolatey) milk stout will soon go everywhere you go, with no glass limitations. The best part of this news? These babies are a full 16 ounces. While the bottles are nitrogen injected, each for the cans have a nitro “widget” that’s stuck to the bottom of the can. Nitrogen gas rushes upward through beer upon opening. No glass needed.
While a glass is always recommended for the perfect pint, especially when you #PourHard a Nitro bottle, cans bring a greater drinking versatility, and bring Milk Stout Nitro to your lips with the crack of a can.
Left Hand Milk Stout Nitro cans will be available across the brewery’s 40 state reach starting in August.
Style: Milk Stout (w/ Lactose.)
Hops: Magnum, U.S. Goldings
Malts: Pale 2-row, Crystal, Munich, Roasted Barley, Flaked Oats, Flaked Barley and Chocolate
Availability: 12oz Bottles, 16oz Cans, Draft.
Debut (Cans): August 2017
Ballast Point Red Velvet, seen on draft in the past, is now apart of a new “Nitro” bottle program.
Nitrogen infused bottles, once used exclusively by world renowned Guinness, have been adopted by various U.S. based breweries over the past few years. Left Hand Brewing was notably first with Nitro Milk Stout bottles debuting at the Great American Beer Festival in 2011. Samuel Adams and Oskar Blues have followed up with their own nitro releases. Now Ballast Point has their own nitrogen infused bottles to kick off 2017.
Ballast Point Red Velvet, a unique twist on an oatmeal stout, is a future Nitro Series release already available on nitro taps. The California based brewery created a chocolatey stout that resembles the cake for which it was named. So much so that pours red, thanks the to a hefty helping of beet juice. The foamy head on the beer truly is the icing on the cake.
You want a beer that gets weird? You’ve found it. It’s a stout that pours blood red, and tastes a bit like chocolate frosting, and creamy too. A beer that really makes you feel all the feels because your eyes are telling you one thing and your tastebuds are telling you another. Don’t worry about the beats either. You’ll only find them in the color. A tasty mindfu$k indeed.
Ballast Point Red Velvet is a 12 ounce bottle release, shipping nationally starting in January, 2017.
Debut: January, 2017
A new nitro pour lager is hitting taps this month – Cigar City El Coco, a tropical coconut flan ale.
This release is inspired by a past collaboration with Chicago’s 5 Rabbit Cerveceria El Bizarrón, a porter brewed with caramelized plantains. In keeping with the beer-meets-Latin food theme, comes a El Coco, inspired by the brewery’s favorite dessert – flan.
Dulce de leche and coconut help create this nitro lager. Expect tropical flavors like coconut in each sip. The name – El Coco, is for a mythical bogeyman in Latin folklore by the same name. Legend has it that parents in Spain and Latin America invoke Coco to discourage children from misbehaving, otherwise he will eat you.
Coconut milk and brown sugar aromas mingle with cinnamon and nutmeg in the aroma of this assertively aromatic tropical ale. Flavors of coconut flan, bread crust and allspice are supported by a full body enhanced by dispense on a nitrogen line, creating a true dessert beer that eschews sweetness for balance and harmony.
Coconut milk and brown sugar aromas mingle with cinnamon and nutmeg in the aroma of this assertively aromatic tropical ale. Flavors of coconut flan, bread crust and allspice are supported by a full body enhanced by dispense on a nitrogen line, creating a true dessert beer that eschews sweetness for balance and harmony
Cigar City El Coco is part of a whole series of nitro tap offerings coming this year. This release is available now through February, 2017.
8.5% ABV, 22 IBUs
Kicking off 2017 in smooth fashion – Modern Times Nitro Black House with Coffee, Coconut, & Cocoa.
The base beer is Black House, the brewery’s year-round oatmeal coffee stout, brewed with Ethiopian Hambela and Sumatran coffee. This special January 2017 release is not only nice and creamy thanks to the nitrogen, but also features coconut and cocoa.
This beer turned out absolutely outstanding, with a decadent mélange of chocolaty, coffee-laden radness laced with delicious notes of coconut, all wrapped up in a package so smooth and velvety, you’ll say, “Damn…that is extremely smooth and velvety.
Modern Times Nitro Black House with Coffee, Coconut, & Cocoa will be available across the brewery’s entire distribution area in early January.
Availability: 16oz Cans, Draft. Limited Release.
Debut: January, 2017
Image: Beer Street Journal
Great Divide Velvet Yeti, the newest in a line of “Yetis” has officially been spotted. Or in this case, tapped.
Yeti Imperial Stout is easily one of the most iconic stouts in America. Over the past few years, the Denver, Colorado based brewery has grown the lineup to include Oatmeal, Espresso Oak Aged, and Chocolate Oak Aged editions. Each one is unique and flavorful, as well as strong. Your next morning will be a rough one if you are slamming Yetis all night. Great Divide Velvet Yeti is a little different.
This Yeti fell in with the nitrogen crowd. You know those kind of people. Little bubbles. Weird taps.
A nitro Yeti is finally going big time. Brewery founder Brian Dunn has had a vision of a more “sessionable,” nitrogen edition of Yeti. Great Divide has experimented over the past few years, so a lucky few might have found it in the taproom in the past. With various expansions going on at the brewery, fall 2016 was as good a time as any to roll this beer out.
If you were to lower the alcohol by volume from an “in your face” imperial stout like Yeti, you’d think the end result would be a beer that tastes thin, or watered down. Not even close. Great Divide Velvet Yeti is big on creamy chocolate and coffee flavors. One just isn’t enough.
This new release comes with just a tiny catch. Right now, Great Divide is producing around 112 kegs a month. Colorado and California are the first states tapping Velvet.
Great Divide Velvet Yeti is a draft only offering.
Forget the non-alcoholic PSLs running around out there. Breckenridge Pumpkin Spice Latte (complete with booze) is now available.
Tis the season for pumpkin. Pumpkin beers are back in full force, and Breckenridge decided to go all all-in on the most well known style of beverage for the season.
Part of the brewery’s Nitro Series, Breckenridge Pumpkin Spice Latte is a nitrogen laced stout, brewed with pumpkin spices and a touch of coffee.
Some of you by now are saying WTF. Honestly, actually kind of works. The nitrogen adds the creaminess that the milk does in a latte. The pumpkin flavors bold but not overwhelming, with a bit of coffee in the finish. All in a “grande” aka 16 ounce can.
Breckenridge Pumpkin Spice Latte is available in 16 ounce cans/4 packs, seasonally.