Welcome to No Corporate Beer, Decibel’s new beer-spotting, consumer guide where we drink a beer and a then review it. Now that we’ve established that complex formula, let’s do this:
Beer: Short and Stout
Brewery: Owl’s Brew Radler
Style: Shandy / Radler
5% ABV / 10 IBU
We’re all busy human beings, so here’s the executive summary upfront: “Sh-t Shandy.” Short and Stout is, quite possibly, the worst beer currently on the market not specifically intended to get high school kids tipsy. Its ingredient list is a crime against humanity: chocolate stout, blended with masala chai tea AND pineapple juice AND coconut water AND agave nectar. Alan Dershowitz could probably concoct some ridiculous argument about how this legally passes as a shandy, but it is most definitely not a radler, which is specifically equal parts lager and citrus soda. Dear Owl’s Brew Radler: You keep using that word, I do not think it means what you think it means.
There are so pretty good brews out there that riff off the idea of tea spices – Left Hand Brewing Company’s Chai Milk Stout and Moon Dog’s Brett Lee’s Morning Tea spring immediately to mind – but the chai spices in Short and Stout way overwhelm the thin stout. As for the Jamba Juice mix-ins, they don’t belong in a cup of chai tea or a stout. All of those things might work better with a more neutral base, like a lager or a cider, or even to balance out a hopped-up IPA. You can taste the cloying sweetness of the pineapple upfront, and a fair bit of soggy raisin notes, but it’s not nearly enough to counteract the bitterness of the cocoa powder, which also contributes a most unappealing brown sediment when you pour this into a glass. Seriously, guys, what the fuck?
More more info – and more disparate flavors – check out Owl’s Brew Radler here.