This wonderful Milk Stout has been number one in my Top 20 Beer List for the last two months. So it’s probably about time that it got a post of its own.
If you’re unfamiliar with Wild Beer Co. (or even if you are and in which case, I’m sure you’ll be nodding along in agreement) they’re a brewery who do things a little a bit differently. If someone asked you to picture a beer and what that constitutes – the first thing that came to mind would probably be a foamy pint of golden ale made with malt, water, hops and yeast. What you almost certainly wouldn’t picture is a beer brewed with lobsters, cockles, seaweed, sea salt and sea herbs or an ale fermented with sourdough yeast. And if those pique your interest, there’s a whole lot more where that came from.
Wild Beer’s philosophy is to add a fifth wild ingredient to each of their beers and in the process, create something incredible. With this formula, they’ve carved themselves a unique niche in the UK (and perhaps the world) beer scene. If you haven’t already, I can’t proclaim enough how much you need to seek out their beers. They’ll open your eyes to what a beer can be; and open your mind to what magic is possible with the art of brewing. If you’re looking for a place to get started on your trip down the beery rabbit hole – Wild Beer Co’s 4.7% Salted Caramel Milk Stout, Millionaire, is a wonderful place to begin.
For me, this beer challenged my perception of stouts. When I was first presented with it as a gift a few years ago, my friend assured me that even though my feelings about darker beer at the time were mixed, that this one – this one I’d love. He wasn’t wrong.
Before you even get it in the glass, the name itself gives you a clue to this beer’s decadence. As it pours, you’re almost transfixed as the thick black nectar slides down the side of the glass. And when you raise it to the nose, you get a massive hit of sweet caramel with a backbone of dark chocolate that should be enough to intrigue even an ardent beer-hater to have a try.
The first sip you take doesn’t immediately give you the full flavour you’d expect. Perhaps your taste buds need a second mouthful to adjust and to catch up with the complexity of what they’re being presented with. Then on sip number two (and with the rest of the sips), the flavours of chocolate, salted caramel and sweet lactose combine perfectly with the malt to produce what can only be described as beery millionaire’s shortbread in delicious liquid form. It’s sweet, but not cloying. Beery, but not overwhelmingly boozy. And moreish to the point of near infatuation. It really is a wonder. And you should grab some if you get the chance to experience it for yourself.