Emperor Norton’s Cinnamon Stout turned out to be one of the beers I “enjoyed” on New Year’s Eve. I didn’t have anything crazy planned on the beer front actually, I just wanted to finish off some of the remaining beers from my Sam Adams Winter Variety pack, like the Old Fezzewig Ale, but then I thought I must have something different sitting downstairs to try.
I picked up this stout on a trip I took up to Vermont earlier in the year, and I really forgot that I had it. It’s made by a small brewery in Concord, New Hampshire called, Manchester Brewing LLC, whose website at the time of writing seemed to be offline because the brewery had closed!
Which, is odd to hear in this age of craft-beer craziness!
This beer started out well enough, and as you can see from the picture its a great dark color with an impressive, cinnamon-colored head. The aroma wasn’t bad, it seemed a bit heave on the cinnamon which would be expected with a name like ‘Cinnamon Stout’, and there were nice notes of roasted malt and coffee as well.
The taste is where this beer went downhill. Fast.
With my first sip, my brain said “Ahhh, this reminds me a little of the Founders Breakfast Stout” , which I love BTW. But by the second sip I was just about having spazms from the tastes. Not spasms of joy either.
The cinnamon, I think was way too much. Maybe it was even bad. The beer left a weird, grainy coating on my tongue, and the flavor turned from great to really bad all within one sip. I just don’t know what happened to this beer, or if its just a really bad concept in the first place.
So, as much as I hate to do it, I quickly realize I will never be able to finish more of this beer than the two sips that I just endured. Usually, I can power through just about anything, but this beer pretty much stopped me in my tracks and down the sink the rest of it went. That doesn’t happen much in my house.
On the plus side, I did notice as the beer was coating my white ceramic sink that it left a nice brown coating that I had to rinse away with the dish sprayer. Good sink retention I suppose.
So, there you have it. My first beer of 2011 turned into a sink job, and also turned out to be my personal first 0-star beer review here on The Brew Club.
How about that?
Despite my dislike of this Cinnamon Stout, I’m not too happy that these guys had to close their doors. I always got a laugh at their labels and their beer names like “Over-Regulated Ale” which was named because of the problems they had getting government approval of the label for that beer.
They also had beers called “Naughty Nancy’s Nut Brown Ale” which needed editing before being approved, and they had to change the flag atop the Concord, NH Capitol building on the label of “Concord Combat” before getting approved.
Don’t want to offend beer drinker’s sensibilities, now do we? Talking Frogs are cool, but cartoon nipples are out?
What’s with all the beer-label regulation anyway?
So, while I thought this beer was a dud, I hope they are able to reopen in the future. I like how they think.