Quick, grab us a cell phone! We need to call someone. It doesn’t matter whom. It just doesn’t matter! We’re going to mash the keypad until some numbers come out and whomever picks up we’re going to scream with pleasure into the phone until they get to Peaks and Pints and try our beer flight of nuts. Our eyeballs are filling with flavor. Do your life a favor and buy this flight of these damn nut flavored craft. We don’t care what you’re doing; we close at midnight. After that, all bets are off. Did you hear that? All bets. We’re calling it Craft Beer Crosscut 1.4.17: A Flight of Nutty Beers. We’re nuts over it!
What? Nut brown ale contains nary a nut. So. There are quite a few nut beers that do contain nuts you nut! Yes, not all nuts are, botanically speaking, nuts. But since American craft brewers don’t like constraints, we’re including some that pass the culinary-nut sniff test. Check out these examples of nut beers from America’s small and independent craft brewers, who are all nuts just like us.
Wild Ride Nut-Crusher Peanut Butter Porter
6% ABV, 18 IBU
Let’s talk love. Peanut Butter. It transports us to a happier, simpler age. It’s not a candy thing. It’s a comfort thing. Redmond, Oregon’s Wild Ride Brewing brings together two favorite flavors, peanut butter and porter, in this liquid chocolate truffle treat with a strong nuttiness. Nut Crusher is a beer that’s almost as fun, if not more fun, to sniff for a while before actually drinking it.
9.8%ABV, 28 IBU
Brewing a nut-based beer isn’t easy as pie. In the case of pecans, oil can easily destroy a beer’s foamy head. Plus, capturing pecans’ delicate scent can be tricky, as too much roasting ruins the aroma. But High Water Brewing cracked the nut by adding Vermont maple sugar and bourbon barrel oak chips. Call us nuts but any beer that’s 9.8 percent with this level of sweetness is meant to be a sipper, so we slowly enjoy toasty malts and charred marshmallow with a splash of vanilla-laced whiskey and peanut shell after the last sip.
5.6% ABV, 33 IBU
Oregon produces nearly 99 percent of all American hazelnuts. It’s the official state nut. It also boasts 230 craft breweries. Naturally, these local goodies make their way into a few beers around the Beaver State, including Rogue Ales’ Hazelnut Brown Nectar. At 1993’s American Homebrewers Association convention, Rogue brewmaster John Maier tasted a brown ale with an unusual twist. His pal Chris Studach had added hazelnuts, an addition that later inspired the Oregon brewery to create the rich, malty, and medal-winning Hazelnut Brown Nectar. Its aroma is hazelnut, strong toasted malts, caramel and chocolate. Flavor opens very mild and thin, developing sweet hazelnut notes mixed with some toasted malt.
On a fateful day in 1957, Jason Voorhees, infuriated by the constant teasing and harassment from other children, snuck out of his summer camp cabin late at night to prove that he could swim. The counselors were not watching him, as they were at a party and fooling around in one of the adult cabins. Jason was never recovered from the lake and was presumably drowned. Mrs. Voorhees blamed the counselors for his death because she was working as the camp cook the day that it happened. In Friday the 13th (1980), Mrs. Voorhees blamed camp personnel for perceived wrongs, sometimes having a conversation with herself using two different voices, becoming rageful, and of course, killing. She went nuts and began killing camp counselors. Triceratops Brewing pays homage, or something, to Mrs. V with a chocolate milk stout brewed with 25 pounds of peanut butter richness, combined with honey malt and milk sugar that provides a mild sweetness and a roasty backbone.
Whether it’s spread on sandwiches or combined with chocolate for a salty-sweet dessert, America’s most beloved legume is the peanut. It’s really a no-brainer that brewers would try to blend peanuts with beer. Wingman Brewers introduced a peanut butter and coconut porter to the Port Townsend Strange Brewfest several years ago. At its 2014 Porterpalooza festival, the Tacoma brewery dropped the coconut and added chocolate. It was a huge hit. It re-appeared for Porterpalooza 2015, this time in 22-ounce bottles as a seasonal. Peanut Butter Cup Porter tastes like a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup full of rich peanut, chocolate, some light roasted notes and a decent amount of sweetness.