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Monday, November 18, 2013

Three Floyds Brewing's Moloko Milk Stout

  • Style: Milk Stout
  • ABV: 8.00%
  • Season: Fall (late August release, but I still see plenty around for sale)
  • Ease to locate: Most craft & liqor stores with a decent beer section in Chicagoland.   Here's the beer menu link. FFF is transitioning distributors, but it shouldn't effect their beers already on the shelves.  Of course you can always take a trip to Munster, IN and visit the FFF Brewpub.  Don't feel the need to dress up either.
  • Color: Dark, black brown, solid looking liquid.
  • Head: 1 1/2 finger brown beige head with lots of spotty lacing ringing the glass.
  • Aroma: Sweet lactose milk sugar and  chocolate with softer notes of roasted coffee beans and malts with a hint of vanilla.
  • Mouthfeel: Full body with creamy coat.  Almost velvety.  Nice bite from carbonation to keep it in check.
  • Finish: Long.  Slides from sweet to lightly bitter back to sweet.  Chocolate note on end.
  • Food friendly?:  Like most milk stouts, it will pair very well with deserts.  I love milk stouts with berry and nut forward dishes,  as well as with pastries, such as pound cake.

Apple User's link: A Clockwork Orange in 30 Seconds

                                                                                 This would have been helpful when I was 18.  As it is, I'm still mildly disturbed.

Back in the day, I was an eager, bright eye and bushy tailed Cinema student at USC.  Who are we kidding?  Back in the day I was a pale skinned, all black wearing, film geek who was paying an insane amount of tuition to watch movies every day  in LA.  But I loved it.  Every class had the potential to introduce a new and exciting world to my formerly somewhat sheltered Catholic school girl life. I was also, for a very brief time, the Saturday night film go-to girl in my group of friends.  I say for a very brief time because one Friday night I dragged my group to a late night showing of Stanley Kubrick's classic A Clockwork Orange.  I'll admit now that I had absolutely no freaking idea what the movie was actually about.  I vaguely thought it had something to do with the youth rebellion in swinging London town.  And a very smug idiot that I worked with encouraged me bring my Rom-Com loving friends with a very helpful piece of advice: "They'll love it.  It's better than Dirty Dancing."  The snickering that followed his advice should have clued me in.  In any case, after that night, my friends never let me choose another film for us.  Worse, it took me three years before I could enjoy Gene Kelly in "Singing in the Rain" again.
It's funny how the colors of the real world only seem really real when you viddy them on the screen.
In the film, a Moloko is a drink made with LSD laced milk.  The characters, prone to ultra violence due to their repressive upbringing (basically, think bored suburban kids who aren't lactose intolerant) drink it at misogynistic milk bars (are their any other kind?)  When I first picked up the bottle of Three Floyd's Moloko Milk Stout, I didn't get the connection.  But I felt slightly uncomfortable by the image on the label without being able to quite put my finger on exactly why.  It hit me about 3/4's through my glass.  But by that time it was too late.  I had been "drooged"
Welly, welly, welly, welly, welly, welly, well.
To what do I owe the extreme pleasure of this surprising visit?
My Moloko Milk Stout poured a solid dark brown/black liquid.  A foamy dark beige one and a half finger head formed on the surface.  Shallow bits of spotty lacing crept up the sides of the pint glass.  It certainly looked like a well crafted milk stout.  It smelled like one as well.  I found lots of milk chocolate and sweet milk sugar scents drifting up from the beer.  A bit of toasty malts and roasted coffee beans roughed up the sweetness. The barest hint of vanilla was detectable as well.  At only 30 IBUs, I didn't expect to easily find a identifiable hop profile (I have no idea what hops were used in this stout, but my best guess is that FFF went the traditional rout and brewed with Fuggle hops.)  The taste mirrored the nose very well.  Plenty of sweetness from chocolate and lactose sugar, but without a smidgen of the cloying element that you sometime find in other milk stouts.  The roasted malt and coffee notes were slightly more prominent on the tongue than on the nose, which gave the swallow a welcome complexity.  I could taste some earthy, almost truffle like bitterness on the back of the swallow that just complemented the sweetness perfectly. The mouthfeel was full bodied and creamy.  There was an almost velvety element to it. The abundant carbonation saved it from becoming too heavy and lent the feel a bit of a bite.  A long finish rounded out the drink, sliding effortlessly from milk sweetness to the earthy bitterness back to a chocolatey end.
Goodness is something to be chosen. When a man cannot choose he ceases to be a man.
Milk stouts in general are difficult to pair with savory dishes.  Like many others, I prefer to drink them on their own or with a light desert.  Try Moloko Milk Stout with a Caramel Pecan Pie this Thanksgiving.  Or serve a bowl of  Raspberry Trifle alongside a glass of it the day after (the desert has raspberries in it.  That makes it perfectly acceptable to eat the day after the big feast.  It's almost healthy, if you squint a bit.)  I can't help but think that if that little droog Alex and his buddies had been able to drink this Moloko instead of the hyped up dairy version, all that nasty wasty ultra violence could have been avoided.  Who is going to get angry while sipping a delicious pint of chocolatey milk stout goodness?  Sadly, I also did not have access to Three Flyod's version when I was at USC.  And as for the idiot co-worker who advised me to take my Tom Hanks/Meg Ryan obsessed friends to see this particular Kubrick masterpiece?  Well, as Anthony Burgess questioned:  “Is it better for a man to have chosen evil than to have good imposed upon him?”

 Yeah.  I totally slugged him the next morning.