Thursday, March 19, 2015

Shock Top Shockolate Wheat

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 14/20
Chad9976 (1305) - Albany, New York, USA - MAR 19, 2015
I picked up a can of Shock Top Shockolate Wheat on a whim since it was only a buck. I didn’t expect it to be that good, not just because of the brand but because it’s six months old and low in alcohol. How well could it have held up? Well, I’m pleasantly delighted by the quality of this beer considering everything it had going against it. Dare say I’d actually recommend it.

I poured a 16oz can into a weizen glass. It was canned on 10/10/14 and cost $1 ($0.06 per ounce).

Appearance: Opaque black in color, some carbonation is visible as it’s poured. A light brown, tall, foamy head at first but it mostly dissipates and leaves no real lacing.

Smell: Surprisingly potent aroma of chocolate and vanilla.

Taste: The description of this beer is quite interesting as it claims to be “Belgian style wheat” aged on cocoa and vanilla beans. It really doesn’t have any Belgian character to it at all, though. Perhaps “Belgian style” refers to the recipe but not the yeast strain – there are no esters here at all. This is much closer to a traditional porter with the addition of chocolate and vanilla. The wheat doesn’t do much for the palette or mouthfeel except to add some dryness on the finish. I’d assume the use of wheat in the grain bill is fairly low since it doesn’t do much for head retention, either. Still, the chocolate taste is pretty authentic and it’s sweet but not cloying. I get a bit of a cola flavor on the back end as well. Not a very complex brew, but a surprisingly tasty one.

Drinkability: Say what you want about the Shock Top line, but damn if they aren’t quaffable brews. This no exception as the mouthfeel is smooth and velvety, but without the viciousness of a stout or porter. Smooth going down with a nearly clean aftertaste. It’s amazing that at only 4.3% ABV Shockolate Wheat was able to stay fresh for so long. This is a great introductory chocolate beer for its target audience. 
Grade: 8/10