dark cocoa powder

Nintendo Switch Cookies


Yields 12 cookies

The things you’ll need

Ingredients
  • 2 ¾ cups all purpose flour
  • ½ cup + 2 tablespoons dark cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • Black candy pearls
  • Black licorice gumdrops
Equipment
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Medium mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Rubber spatula
  • Baking sheet lined with parchment paper
  • Rolling pin
  • Pastry brush
  • Rounded rectangle cookie cutter
  • Red, blue, black, grey royal icing in decorating bags fitted with #2 tips

Let’s get started!

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, use a hand mixer to beat butter until softened. Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy.
  4. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla and almond extracts and mix until well combined.
  5. On low speed, beat in the dry ingredients and mix until well combined.
  6. Shape the dough into 2 disks about 1 inch thick. Wrap the disks in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour up to overnight.
  7. Roll dough out on floured surface to ¼ inch thick. Use a rounded rectangle cookie cutter to cut out cookies and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  8. Freeze cookies for 10 minutes.
  9. Bake for 12 minutes, rotating during baking.
  10. Remove cookies from oven and cool for 2 minutes on baking sheet. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Time to decorate!

  1. Use black royal icing to pipe the outline of a rectangle in the middle of each cookie. Pipe a smaller rectangle outline inside of the first.
  2. Pipe a blue outline on the left side of each cookie and a red outline on the right.
  3. Allow the outlines to dry and then fill in the screen with black and grey royal icing.
  4. Cut 24 gumdrops in half.
  5. Fill in the blue outline with blue royal icing and then quickly place the rounded gumdrop half and two pearls into the icing. Do the same for the red side.
  6. Use black royal icing to add fine details. Repeat decorating steps for the rest of the cookies.
  7. TaDa! These Nintendo Switch Cookies give you the perfect excuse to play with your food!

Dairy Free Chocolate Pudding

It happens. It’s 4 PM and you’re PMSing hard. You’ve done dynamite all day, have an itch you want to scratch, but don’t want to drop a bomb down a well. It’s OK. This pudding is dairy free, high in iron, high in calcium, and can be sugar-free if you prefer that. It feels and tastes every bit like pudding while being a bit lighter than your store-bought counterpart.

  • 3 TBSP cornstarch (curious to try arrowroot powder)
  • 2 TBSP water
  • 1 ½ cups almond milk
  • 3 TBSP dark cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup sweetener (I used stevia)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½  tsp espresso powder

Directions: Dissolve cornstarch in water. In a large saucepan, combine all the ingredients including the cornstarch slurry and stir frequently until it begins to bubble. Reduce the heat to low and continue stirring until it begins to thicken. Let it cool for a few minutes before transferring to the fridge and letting it cool and thicken more. Split with a friend or keep it all to yourself.

Base Protein Pancakes + Meal Prepping Tips

Servings: 1 jar

Dietary: Vegetarian, adjustable to Gluten-Free, High Protein

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup quick oats (use gluten-free oats to make this a gluten-free recipe!)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Sweetener of choice, to taste (I use about ¼ tsp stevia)
  • 1/3 cup cottage cheese (I prefer to use 2%)
  • 1/3 cup egg whites
  • Flavouring of choice: my go-to is ½ tsp cinnamon + ¼ tsp vanilla extract. If you’re adding cocoa powder, it will really thicken up the batter so have some sparkling water/club soda on hand to thin it out*
  • 1 tbsp nut butter of choice
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt (or yogurt of choice - skyr is a personal favourite of mine)
  • ½ cup fruit (I typically use frozen mixed berries, but just about anything works!)

*I use sparkling water in pancakes instead of flat for extra fluffiness, but flat water will work just fine to thin out the batter!

Directions:

  1. In a blender, Magic Bullet, or food processor, add oats, baking powder, sweetener, cottage cheese, egg whites, and flavouring. Blend until smooth (you can leave some oat chunks if you prefer this, but be aware that it will affect the consistency of your batter).
  2. On a non-stick or greased skillet, pour about 1/8 cup of the batter and cook until browned. Flip and brown the other side. Set pancake aside, and repeat with remaining batter.
  3. Line the inside of a jar or tupperware container with nut butter. Add a pancake to the jar/container, top it with some of the yogurt and fruit, then add another pancake. Continue until you’ve used up all your pancakes, yogurt, and fruit.
  4. Tighten the lid to your jar/container, stick in the fridge, and get excited for a delicious, pre-made, on-the-go breakfast in the morning!

Flavour Combos:

  • Vanilla Cinnamon - ½ tsp cinnamon, ¼ tsp vanilla
  • Green Tea - 1 tsp matcha powder, ¼ tsp vanilla
  • Dark Chocolate - 1 tbsp cocoa powder + 1 tbsp mini chocolate chips to top while cooking
  • Vanilla Latte - 1 tsp espresso powder, ¼ tsp vanilla
  • Christmas Cookie - ¼ tsp ground ginger, ¼ tsp ground cinnamon, ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • Mocha - ½ tbsp cocoa powder, ½ tsp espresso powder

Meal Prep Tips:

  • I typically multiply the recipe by 6 if I’m meal prepping - be careful with this much of baking powder, the batter will gain a lot of volume so ensure you have a lot of space in your blender.
  • While the pancakes are cooking, I line my jars and containers with nut butter
  • As you make the pancakes, add one to each jar before adding the second
  • This is a really easy meal to assemble while the pancakes are cooking, and the clean-up isn’t bad, so if you’re making enough for the week it should take about an hour total
  • Store in the fridge! (duh)

2010 CVNE “Cune” Gran Reserva Rioja

It’s barbecue time! Red and black cherries, wood notes of vanilla, dark tea, dried spices, and licorice on the nose. Fresh, bright cherries, raspberries, red licorice, and dried herbs on the palate. Very bright acidity balances other notes of wood and dark cocoa powder. 

4/5 bones

$$$

Tempranillo, Mazuelo, Graciano

13.5% abv

Rioja, SPAIN

Protein Pops

You can pretty much put whatever the hell you want to in these. My calorie calculations are for adding in a greens powder, unsweetened cocoa powder, and fiber powder (which does give a gritty texture), but you don’t need to include those and you’ll end up with fewer calories if that’s what you’re looking for. 

The Basic Recipe
-unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or any other kind of milk), about 200mL
-200g of your favorite fresh or frozen fruit (I used frozen strawberries [leaves and all] and frozen blueberries)
-1 serving of your favorite protein powder (any flavor, I used unflavored)

The basic idea here is to have just enough liquid to cover the frozen fruit, and then you blend it together. If you prefer a less creamy, more fruity treat then replace the almond milk with orange juice or another juice of your choice. Freeze and enjoy.

Ideas
-cherries + 90% dark chocolate pieces (cocoa powder or chocolate protein powder optional)
-avocado + vanilla stevia
-banana + PB2 (or other peanut butter powder, including PB protein powder)
-strawberries + PB2  (or other peanut butter powder, including PB protein powder)
-raspberries + blackberries + blueberries
-coconut + 90% dark chocolate pieces (cocoa powder or chocolate protein powder optional) + coffee powder
-bananas + matcha green tea powder
-oranges + vanilla stevia
-mango + avocado
-papaya + passion fruit
-pumpkin + pumpkin pie spice (or just add cinnamon and nutmeg to taste)
-chocolate protein powder + chocolate oat milk (or other chocolate non-dairy milk) + 90% chocolate pieces

Fast Hair Growth

Recently I cut off 7 inches of my hair for charity but then quickly decided that short hair wasn’t for me, this is a list of things that I have done which in my opinion have noticeably made my hair grow faster!

EAT WELL

Hair is made from protein so it is essential to eat things such as eggs, beans, nuts, soy and fish (if you’re not veggie) as these all help increase Keratin production.

Healthy fats such as Omega 3 are essential and these can be found in fish and plant oils. Fish oil tablets can be found at most health shops. Healthy fats help increase the growth of hair follicles. Fats to avoid include: saturated fats, trans fatty acids and hydrogenated fats.

TREATMENT OF HAIR

Using straighteners, curlers and hair dryers can really damage hair due to the extreme temperatures, so avoid using these. Harsh chemicals in hairsprays and some shampoos and conditioners can also really damage hair so try using herbal products from places like lush (personally I like the cinnamon shampoo bar, which is specifically to encourage hair growth and the black pots of “roots”)

Use a brush, head massaging tool, or your finger tips to massage the scalp for 5-10 minutes daily to encourage growth.

VITAMINS

Zinc is an important vitamin as it helps repair tissues that are in the scalp. Zinc can be found in dark chocolate, cocoa powder and roast pumpkin/squash. Iron is important because it helps deliver oxygen around the body and to the scalp which encourages hair growth. Iron can be found in lentils and beans. Vitamin C is important because it helps to produce collagen and allows the body to accept iron, Vitamin C can be found in: citrus fruits, broccoli, bell peppers and spinach. Other helpful vitamins to hair growth include: A, D, E and K; Which can all be found in supplement form.

LIFE STYLE

It is important to stay hydrated and you should be drinking between 6-8 glasses of water a day! It is also important to try and reduce stress in your life as this can stunt hair growth.

HOME RECIPES

  1. Heat and mix together, half a small glass of olive oil, one tomato and some aloe vera. Apply to scalp whilst warm, massaging into roots, leave for 30 minutes then have a shower as normal.
  2. Wash/Rinse hair daily in rosemary water.
  3. Mix half a glass of olive oil, a teaspoon of chili powder and a teaspoon of cinnamon. Apply to scalp, massaging into roots, leave for 20 minutes then have a shower as normal. (This may tingle, but shouldn’t cause any pain - if so wash off immediately) 
  4. Leave olive oil on tips of hair 10 minutes before washing to avoid split ends.
  5. Mix half a glass of olive oil and a table spoon of mayonnaise. Apply to scalp, massaging into roots, leave for 20 minutes then have a shower as normal. 

(Any left over mixes can be kept in fridge to be used again, simply stir and use as instructed.)

2

Oskar Blues “Ten Fidy”

95 A


Ten Fidy (named after its 10.5%) is a seasonal Imperial Stout only released in September. It’s probably my favorite offering from Oskar Blues. Aromas are heavy with berry notes (blackberry), sweet brown sugar, dark chocolate, cocoa powder, and espresso.


The palate begins with a quick establishment of malty sweetness flavored like brown sugar and molasses. Bittersweet chocolate chips overshadow dark fruity accents such as cherry and plum. Malts continue to build over what appears to be shy bitterness, but in reality, a full-blown 98 IBU’s are discreetly concealed. Flavors of over-roasted coffee, fudge, and chocolate cake soon develop from the rear. Minor hints of grapefruit zest mark the climax, followed by a touch of anise, earth tones, and charred barley fading out. Mouthfeel is nearly full-bodied with a super smooth/viscous texture that comes across wet at first, then somewhat dry nearing the end. Carbonation is sort of flat and dull, but it works.


I suppose this is what I would call a dessert beer, because of the high-hitting sweetness, and suggestions of chocolate cake. The hefty alcohol actually ends up quite well-integrated, so instead of being suppressed, they’ve found a way to make the best of its influence. I believe this is why it’s been described as a ‘Russian’ imperial stout. I realize some may prefer a more hefty balance from the hops, but I really do love a good malt-forward double. This is great, go get it. I recommend it!


Known Malts: Two-row, chocolate malt, roasted barley, flaked oats


10.5%

98 IBU

Longmont, Colorado (or Brevard, NC)

Gluten (and dairy) free chocolate cake mix.

For @felren13 and anyone else that might have been interested.

Yields two 8-9inch round bakes for tiered cakes. (or a rather flat brownie mix)

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups of all purpose gf flour or rice flour blend
    (rice flour can be quite gritty at times, but can be ground down in a food processor which is what I do for my bakes, almond flour can also be used for a smoother blend but it makes the cake very gooey and hard to set)
  • 1 ½ cups baking sugar (castor sugar in the UK)
  • 1 cup cocoa powder
    (dark is best, if you’re in the US and can get your hands on double dutch it’s a little less acidic than regular baking cocoa I’ve found over here, but if you can’t get hold of dutch use boiling water, I’ll explain why.)
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder (not soda! these two are not interchangeable)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon of xanthum gum
  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/3 cups water (boiled and let to cool a little, boiling water is the best way to bring out the full flavor of cocoa powder, and also reduce the acidity in US chocolate baking powder. Just be sure to add it slowly or you’ll scramble your eggs)
  • 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract (make sure it’s gf, some cheaper ones aren’t)

Method:

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (180′c) and lightly grease baking pans.
  • In a medium sized bowl, mix together your dry ingredients, and in another whisk your eggs, vegetable oil and vanilla extract together and gradually add the water so as not to scramble the eggs. An electric mix will get the best results, but if you’re patient and able, hand whisking will work too.
  • Gradually add in the dry mix, one cup at a time, and beat until well mixed and smooth.
  • Pour mixture equally into your pans, measure if you have to.
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the sponge springs back to touch and a toothpick inserted at the center comes out clean, then leave to sit outside the oven still inside the tins for 10 mins.
  • After 10 mins remove the cake from the tins and leave them to cool on wire rack. Cake should stay moist for up to 2-3 days if kept airtight

If you want a good frosting for it, then 200ml of heavy whipping cream + 200g of chocolate chips, heated over a low heat and whisked until smooth then left to cool 2-4 hours in the fridge (though overnight works best) makes a good filling and outer frosting, though it’s not dairy free. If you do this then the cake needs to be refrigerated, but will last nicely in the fridge (covered with foil) for 3-4 days.

2

Dark Chocolate Brownie Cupcakes with Salted Caramel Frosting

These are the same cupcakes I made for my friend Jessica except they are now for my friend Allison’s birthday. The salted caramel frosting is nearly the same as before, but instead, a more thick caramel was made and the frosting is now much thicker, less pillowy, still delicious. 

Ingredients for Brownies

1 1/3 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour

¾- cup Hershey’s special dark cocoa powder

½ tbsp ground coffee or espresso powder

1 ½ cup granulated sugar

1 ½ cup light brown sugar

¾ cup butter (1 ½ sticks), softened at room temperature

4 large eggs, at room temperature (it is crucial that you DO NOT use cold eggs)

3 tbsp sour cream

½ tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla extract

Ingredients for Frosting

½ cup + 2 tbsp heavy cream

1 cup brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla

8 tbsp (1 stick) salted sweet cream butter

3 cups powdered sugar

Fleur de sel (French sea salt) or regular sea salt for garnishing

Directions for Brownies

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a muffin tin with liners and set aside

Sift your dry ingredients (flour, cocoa powder, and salt) into a bowl and set aside

In a large bowl or standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream your butter until it is smooth.

Once your butter is creamed, add in your sour cream and vanilla extract. Add in both types of sugar and mix thoroughly, and slowly begin adding in your eggs one at a time. Be sure to scrape the sides of your bowl and incorporate ingredients with a flat spatula as you go along

Finally, add in your dry ingredients and mix until your batter comes together.

Your batter WILL be dark so don’t worry

Evenly divide your brownie batter into the muffin tin and bake for about 20-24 minutes. You want the inside of the brownies to still be slightly wet but not UNDERCOOKED. Using a toothpick or a dry piece of spaghetti, check your batter, it should come out with CRUMBS and a small amount of batter on it, not a fully wet batter

Remove the brownies from the oven and allow them to cool for a few minutes while you make the ganache.

*The brownies will puff up when they bake but once they cool, they will slightly deflate and create a little dip/pocket which is a perfect place to put your frosting

Directions for Frosting

In a sauce pan, heat the heavy cream over medium heat. 

Once gently simmering, add in the brown sugar and butter, melting them together until most of the sugar crystals dissolve. 

Bring to a gentle boil and allow to do so for about 30 seconds-1 minute.

Remove from heat, add in 1 tsp of sea salt, and let cool completely before making frosting. 

In a standing mixer or large mixing bowl, add in the vanilla extract and slowly begin, ½ cup at a time, adding the powdered sugar.

(If you want to color your frosting, begin adding in your food coloring until your reach your desired color).

Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl with a flat spatula to continue incorporating the ingredients.

If you want a very thick frosting, add in a small amount (maybe 2 tbsp) of cornstarch or arrowroot starch and be sure to incorporate fully. 

Once the frosting has thickened, give it a final stir and pipe onto your cooled cupcakes.

Garnish with sea salt.

Enjoy!

3

The Femme Fatale Toolkit - My Experience with Black Orchid

I live in a country where the national flower is an orchid. But I’ve never actually seen a black orchid and only recently realized it was an actual breed of flower (and not just a cool name). And they actually look frikkin’ cool in a slightly scary way.

I recently invested in my first bottle of Tom Ford fragrance (Black Orchid of course) and I have to say it’s an odd scent. 

For something that contains dark chocolate, vanilla and benzoin, it’s not sweet at all to me. In fact it’s VERY very dry, and very earthy. It smells like freshly-turned soil and dark 100% cocoa powder (go dip your nose in a tin of baking cocoa; it’s musty, bitter and a little bit powdery) more than candy. I can’t quite make up my mind about whether I dare to actually wear it out because this thing is STRONG and lasts for hours and hours, but some things sit right between beautiful and scary, and that’s the thing about Black Orchid that fascinates me. I imagine thus is what a vampire would smell like. Earth, blood and cocoa.

Whether you like Black Orchid or not, I was inspired to find a few easier-to-love (and more economical) beauty companions that share that same aesthetic, for the femme fatales among you.

  • Too Faced Poison Orchid - the name says it all. This black/purple duochrome is dramatic and gorgeous. If you have never swatched it, you HAVE to.
  • Givenchy Gloss Interdit 15 Velvet Purple - now a dark black purple lipstick is sorta cliché. Soften it up with some shine and translucence and you have a sexy winner!
  • Shu Uemura Calligraph:ink Liquid Eye Liner - this new baby is launching only in Feb 2014, and it’s a GLORIOUS brush-tip pen, shaped like Asian calligraphy brushes. (Think of a brush shaped like a felt tip.) You get the intensity of a brush liner, and the ease and precision of a felt tip.
  • Make Up For Ever Aqua Black - this super versatile black cream is a dual-function cream shadow and liner. It’s just black, black, black, and you can smudge it out, or wear it dense. Super versatile, AND long wearing like all the other Aqua products once it sets.
  • Chanel Le Vernis 583 Taboo - a galaxy in a bottle; you get streaks of red, purple, indigo… you name it. 

Happy Mother’s Day (frosting recipe included)

Happy Mother’s Day to all mothers out there

This is a chocolate chip/fudge cake, the cake is frosted with seriously the best frosting ever, here is the recipe for the frosting. There are many ideas you can use this delicious frosting with, sugar cookies sandwiched with frosting, cupcakes, parfait (add frosting in between your parfait dessert) or even use the frosting (add one tablespoon of heavy cream to thin out frosting) as drizzle for your mother’s day pancakes

:bulletred: The best buttercream chocolate frosting - Sweet, rich, and delicious!
¾ cup dark cocoa powder
3 ¼ cups powdered sugar
2-3 teaspoons vanilla
1 cup butter
1 tablespoon milk

2

Dark chocolate chunks, Ghirardelli dark cocoa powder, and tera’s whey fair trade dark chocolate cocoa powder combine in this awesome, super easy recipe to make rich, fudgy, actually good for you brownies! The banana provides nutrients and tons of moisture without making it taste overly like bananas (and you can’t taste the protein powder at all). You can add a dash of salt if you usually bake with it, I do but usually just eyeball a pinch haha.

I like to keep my baked chocolate goods in the fridge (along with all my granola bars & power bars).

Try using this as a base recipe to make your favorite brownie- variation. If you make these in cupcake tins instead of a loaf pan you can even make a bunch of different flavors by topping or mixing in any of these additions:

  • nuts, especially walnuts or hazelnuts
  • dried fruit like cherries
  • coconut
  • espresso powder
  • a small dash of spice like cinnamon or cayenne
  • caramel
  • mint extract (or any other extract really)

For more healthy dessert recipes go here and for more gluten free recipes go here! :)

4

Going thematic for tomorrow… it was spirit day today so doing gold and “black” cupcakes (our school colors)

Lemon Cupcakes with a Lemon custard filling and Double Dark Fudge Filled Cucpakes! 

Lemon Cupcakes:

  • 1 box lemon cake mix, 3 eggs, 1 cup water, 1/3 cup oil, ¾ cup flour, tsp extra lemon juice. Mix and bake @ 350 for 13 minutes. 
  • 1 box lemon pudding mix, ¾ cup water, 1 cup sugar, 2 tbsp lemon juice mix, ¼ can condensed milk, mix on medium heat stove until gelled. Add extra powdered sugar to thicken. Cut out holes in cake and pour custard in. 
  • 1 tub lemon frosting 1 cup butter 2 tsp lemon juice, extra food coloring if desired, 2-3 cups confectionery sugar. Mix and frost cupcakes. 

Double Dark Fudge Filled Cupcakes

  • 1 box devil’s food cake, 3 eggs, 1 cup water, 1/3 cup oil, ¾ cup flour, ¼ cup dark chocolate cocoa. Mix and bake @ 350 for 14 mins. 
  • 1 bag dark chocolate chips, ¾ can condensed milk, ¾ tsp cayenne pepper, ½ tsp red pepper flakes, 1 tbsp dark cocoa powder, melt on medium stove until smooth. Cut holes in center of cakes and fill with fudge!
  • 1 tub chocolate frosting, ½ stick soft butter, extra fudge, 2-3 cups confectionery sugar, ¼ cup dark cocoa powder. Mix and frost! 

For more recipes, check my tag!

2

Lagunitas “NightTime”

92 A-


NightTime is a seasonal Black IPA released April through June. Aromas release bright hop notes of tropical fruit, citrus, and evergreen. Malts smell like dark chocolate and coffee. One part stout, one part IPA.


The palate makes a creamy start with flavors of bittersweet chocolate chips and malted milk balls. Hops gradually ascend into sweet suggestions of apricot and pineapple, then twist into a citric side of grapefruit and orange zest. Malts continue to uphold the lower register as they progress toward deeper flavors of dark chocolate and cocoa powder, held over a collection of caramel sweetness. Hops return with herbal bitterness on the back-end, then reach a dull, sour crescendo. The aftertaste develops a touch of spice as the presumed alcohol settles. Mouthfeel delivers a well-rounded, creamy texture over a medium-full body that closes a little hop dry. Drinkability is deceptively easy, so you might remind yourself to slow down.


Overall, I find hops dictate the overall direction of the brew. There’s a balanced exchange happening as the weight shifts from sweet, then bitter, and finishes sour. Bitterness is Goldilocks, which means its low enough for proper control, but high enough to stand up to the sweetness. Alcohol is well-integrated, so drinkability is relatively unaffected. Keeping the ABV under 9% makes the alcohol practically imperceptible (8.5% is the sweet spot). Overall, it’s been rather enjoyable, so you can count on me revisiting this again next year. Following the Lagunitas tradition, this is sold at a fair price, which adds more motivation to purchase their fine brews. If you’re a fan of the brewery, you’ll probably dig this. I recommend it.


8.2%

65 IBU

Petaluma, California

2

Westbrook “Mexican Cake”

99 A+


Mexican Cake is an Imperial Stout originally brewed to celebrate the one year anniversary of Westbrook, and due to its immense popularity, will now be released once every year during the month of May. The Mexican refers to the wonderful list of extra ingredients, including cocoa nibs, vanilla bean, cinnamon, and fresh habanero. Delightful aromas come across like chocolate confections, the most prominent note resembling fudge with walnuts. Vanilla sweetness rounds out the middle register as malts gets smokey with hints of burnt coffee. Alcohol smells a bit like rum. More distant complexities include dark fruit, a pinch of cinnamon, and peppery spice.


The palate begins with smooth milk chocolate, settling into a burnt caramel sweetness. Roasted malts begin to accumulate toward a rich, sultry body of dark chocolate, cocoa powder, and burnt barley. Warm vanilla bean is intertwined along the way, supplemented by the earthy spice of cinnamon, which acts to provide subtle complexity without clear attribution of flavor. As the habanero begins to emerge from behind, I find a genuine flavor of fresh pepper fruit, followed by a burst of spice as capsaicin settles on the back of the throat where it continues as an aftertaste. Sweet malts re-emerge into a body of brown sugar, which acts as a counterbalancing force to measure up to the barrage of dark malts, spice, and 50 IBU’s of bitterness. Flavors of espresso fill in the remainder of the palate as smoky malts gather on the back-end. Hops provoke such minimal impact, they’re hardly worth mentioning except on the basis of their subtle support. The mouthfeel is lightly carbonated, generally quite ‘wet’ over a full, chewy body.


Overall, I find the bitter and sweet components united in supreme balance. Malts are the star of the show, and I would have it no other way. The presence of heat imparted by alcohol merges with the burn of the capsaicin, creating a complementary synergy, thus making it difficult to distinguish one from another. Mexican Cake is one hot item in the craft beer world, and distribution is minimal, so finding a bottle would be difficult. I’d like to thank fellow tumblr beer blogger, Holly George for picking up this bottle direct from the brewery. This is a memorable, tasty treat I hope to see again one day. I highly recommend it!


10.5%

50 IBU

Mount Pleasant, South Carolina