I'm taking a break from viewer request month for the day because today is my birthday and I wanted to treat myself to something special. So after hearing great things about this Mikkeller guy for two years, I finally decided to indulge in his famous Beer Geek Breakfast - an oatmeal stout made with coffee. There are a few variations of this beer, but I wanted to start with the "flagship" version so to speak. And no, this doesn't count as a Mikkeller beer that Peter (The Master of Hoppets) wanted me to review. We'll review another one together in a few weeks.
4AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
I poured a 500ml bottle into a tulip glass.
Appearance: Pitch black body without any traces of red. A very dark, brown, whipped cream-like head which retains and laces extremely well.
Smell: Light dairy-aisle aroma with minor notes of iced coffee. The nose is surprisingly tame, although it indicates it will be more sweet than bitter.
Taste: Beer Geek Breakfast is one of those beers that starts off with a bang, but then seems to fall victim to the law of diminishing returns. The first few sips are incredible, actually. Strong flavors of a robust, imperial oatmeal stout. A light sweetness throughout the first half, very cream-like. Then suddenly the roasted malts appear out of nowhere for a big, bitter taste. Bitter dark chocolate also emerges between the two flavors and again as the roasty flavor transitions to a light iced coffee sweetness. This is a very impressive and tasty palate.
As I drink on, the laws of entropy affect the palate. The sweetness mellows out, and the coffee bitterness fades a little. It certainly remains a quality oatmeal stout through and through, but the overall palate seems better when it’s not homogenized. I was also a little disappointed by the lack of real coffee flavor per se, although the coffee bitterness is plenty prominent.
Mouthfeel: Soft, comfortable, and less thick than you’d expect.
Drinkability: This beer psyches you out. It looks, smells, and tastes a little like an imperial stout, but it’s not since it’s only 7.5% ABV. It’s surprising just how easy it is to gulp down and just how velvety smooth the texture is. This is a good beer to have as a liquid dessert.
Overall, Mikkeller Beer Geek Breakfast is a perfect example of a higher end oatmeal stout, although I don’t think it justifies its higher end price point of $13 a bottle.