One of the swell new editors of WUY dropped us an email on the weekend inquiring about the status of our column, and casually mentioned that they were sipping on a Phillips Longboat Chocolate Porter at the time of writing.
You know when someone mentions bacon, and all you can think about is … well, bacon?
Yeah. We went straight out, picked up a bottle and promptly changed the theme of this week’s article.
Phillips is a cool Victoria-based micro that had a Hollywoodesque start. Matt Phillips had a dream to create a brewery that produced unique artisan ales using the finest of ingredients.
Turned down by bank after bank, Phillips decided to go the multi-credit card route – not sensibly recommended under almost any circumstance.
Nevertheless, fistfuls of maxed-out credit cards, two employees, and six years later, the awards started to roll in. Now, with shelves full of bronze through to gold and a CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale) nod for BC Brewery of the Year, Phillips is more than established.
The Double Chocolate Porter was one of Phillips’ earliest offerings, and a darn good one. (They have since dropped the “Double” from the name.) Here is a wee bit about the style:
Back in September, we touched on the porter style in our story about Alaskan Brewing Co.’s Smoked Porter.
Remember that a porter typically has a good dosing of English hops (earthy) and notes of caramel and darkly roasted malts. It all comes together deliciously for a medium-bodied, roasty, and slightly sweet-finishing beer. So this would be the base for LCP.
“But how do they get the chocolate in?” you ask.
Many brewers take one of the following two routes: add real chocolate (cocoa powder or baker’s chocolate) late in the boil, or add chocolate flavoring (liqueur or extract) after fermentation.
The first option has the tendency to kill the beer’s head, but the second option uses an artificial ingredient in what could be an otherwise natural process. It’s a real dilemma.
Phillips came up with a quick fix: use both. The result? Well…
He said: It smells like a McDonald’s chocolate milk shake, and once I had that thought in my head, I couldn’t smell anything else. It pours a very dark brown with a moderate head. Tastewise, it isn’t as thick as I’d expected, but it has a good mouthfeel with good carbonation. It’s very chocolaty for sure — but milk chocolate, not dark — with some light roastiness. It has a slight sour taste, which I’m not completely sold on. Ends sweet. Is delicious.
She said: Chocolate milk shake, YEAH!!! I love this one. I also think Michael is off his rocker as I taste absolutely no sourness whatsoever. I find it smooth, full, milk-chocolaty sweet (not overly – I really don’t like sweet beers, so trust me). Cautionary note: drink it straight away. You may think it is a sipper, but a warmer, less carbonated LCP will taste thinner, sharper and finish too sweetly.
He said: I am not off my rocker!
Now that it is chilly out, it is the perfect afternoon beer. Pick up this 5.2-percent beer at the Whitehorse liquor store for $6.40 (for a 650ml) and start your very own tiff with a loved one. You won’t be sorry!
Please enjoy this article responsibly.