Wow, the’re has been a lot of chatter among the craft beer community online today! Hot topics! Heated debates! Name calling! But – I am not going to weigh in right now about a beer marketed specifically to women or people being specifically offended by a beer label. Nope. Today I’m going to talk about CHOCOLATE.
I have been following @phil_from_MD on twitter for some time now and at some point missed that he is responsible for something that I came across that seemed almost too awesome to be true – Chocolates that contain hops.
These hoppy chocolates (adorably called Hopolates) come in light and dark varieties, are adorably shaped into beer steins. I have written about beer and chocolate pairings before, but never about hop flavors actually contained in chocolate. So of course I ordered them.
You can order them online at www.hopcandyinc.com. Currently they’re sold in 1/2 or 1lb boxes, and come in light and dark. You can then choose from one of four hop flavors: Amarillo, Cascade, Northern Brewer and Nugget. Though, if you put a note in w/the order he’ll send you a variety set – which is exactly what I decided to do.
The first ones I tried were the Cascade + Milk Chocolate. In retrospect, that was the right thing to do – start with the most relatively mild flavor of hop – but I ended up being sad that I all I tasted was some really tasty chocolate. But then, I tried the other flavors. The bitter bite of the hops is a great complement to cut the richness of the chocolate (which is of very high quality, by the way). The hops come in at the end, and it’s not like drinking a chocolate flavored IPA so much as it is like eating a chocolate infused with a little citrusy, bitter twinge. They were awesome.
Now, I am biased on this one, but I think that I liked the milk chocolate better than the dark chocolate. I am going to qualify with saying that I am not a dark chocolate lover – I enjoy it but I like milk chocolate better. I think it’s that the dark chocolate has some bitterness in it already, and is more of a parallel than a contrast. But I think that’s going to boil down to a personal opinion.
All and all – a really fun treat, and I think they’d make a fun and really different gift for beer lovers in your life. (So much better than more pint glasses, right?!). I urge you to check these out if you can.