Saturday, November 21, 2009

"Cooking" with Beer: Apple Pie Ale

Wow. Okay last year around this time I commenced a little project called "The 12 Beers of Xmas" in which I compared 12 winter/holiday ales to find the winners. It was fun. And hard, delicious work. I recall trying a Harpoon's Winter Warmer at that time and enjoying it. Hadn't thought about it since until recently when I read on a well-known beer-related site that if you mix it with cider it tastes like apple pie.
For a little seasonal fun, I decided to try this, but first trying the beverages in their solitary states.
Harpoon's Winter Warmer (From Boston): A pretty dark clear amber, tiny fizzy head. It smelled strongly of cinnamon and nutmeg, along with some malts and mild...banana? It tastes sweet, like pumpkin pie. Noticeable malts. Despite the strong flavors, it still comes across as thin. Perhaps...Like watered-down banana bread, if that were possible. But overall, pleasant, if not awesome. B
Next I give the cider a go. I picked up a nice 22 oz. of JK Scrumpy's Organic Cider, simply because it was the only cider I saw. I didn't realize until right now that it's from MI. WHOOT! It poured paler than I thought it would be - looked like cloudy apple juice with almost a pink undertone. No visible carbonation or head. The smell? Like apple orchard and beer. The taste? Wow! Super crisp, sweet yet tart, and, ya know, tastes like cider. Alcohol not as present in the taste as the smell. This was WAY good.
Now for the cooking...
I poured about 50% each. It came out darker, sudsier, and with sediment that I had not noticed before but decided they were tiny pieces of apple. Sweet and tart, caramel, spices...Yep! Tastes like pie! I decided to be decadent and have some with real apple pie. Delightful. Also, didn't you think the motto for Sara Lee was "nobody does it like Sara Lee?" Well, according to the box it's "Nobody doesn't like Sara Lee." I don't like that double negative. I do, however, like apple pie.


  1. I love apple pie too! Not as much as I luvs you, tho'!

    Okay, enough sappy stuff. I was in London a little before Halloween and man, they had all these crazy flavored beers (not just pumpkin, my friend). I am not a beer drinker but hell, if they make girly beers - I am there! At this one pub (where my cousin was having her wedding reception, the reason I was in London), they had all these sweet concoctions... Only problem was they were all out of most of them. I thought that was ironic because us Americans think that the Brits are all tough and would never drink fruity or sweet beers. Anyway, I was fortunate enough to try a toffee-flavored beer. It was pretty good but the problem is: the British pint. The things are huge and I can never drink it all before it gets flat and warm.

    But I'm really only speaking of the Brits because I saw this article on the BBC today and thought "wow, this is a beer Sarah needs to taste test." After that I thought, "Hopefully, it won't kill her!" See:

  2. LOL - I just heard about the high alcohol/high priced beer on NPR this morning! Sam Adams makes a 27% alcohol beer, Utopias. A wee bit out of my budget at something like $150 a bottle.

    Deva, you need to stick with the pint. Work it. Eventually you can drink it all! And if not I'll help you out. Toffee beer sounds delightful. :D