Genghis Pecan

Clown Shoes: Genghis Pecan (USA: Porter: 7% ABV)

Visual: Black. Thin brown dust of a head. On later pours a much larger brown froth.

Nose: Roasted nuts. Soft sweet nuts. Charring. Caramelized sugar.

Body: Peanut. Bitter chocolate. Brown sugar. Soft nuttiness mixes with a slightly acrid nuttiness. Slightly chalky. Slight milky coffee.

Finish: Charring. Bitter chocolate. Walnut. Bitter coffee. Chalky.

Conclusion: I have commented in the past about porters and stouts that have been such that “coffee” or “chocolate” seems an inadequate description of the flavours, due to the amount of layers covered by that one word. I never thought I would apply the same to nuts.

Maybe it could be because I am not overly knowledgeable about nuts. Especially pecan nuts. They are nuts right? Anyway, there seems to be a range of nuttiness here, from causal peanuts, slightly sugary sweet nut, to roasted harsh and acrid, to that slightly odd cashew style nuttiness.

So does that mean that this is the nut equivalent of Beer Geek Brunch Weasel? No. For one it is a porter, not an oatmeal imperial stout. More than that, well I don’t know if nuts just don’t benefit as much from the exploration, but it doesn’t feel as much fun, let alone as world class.

So, what is it then? A porter that leans towards the harsher end of the spectrum, roasted, charred and chalky, with even the chocolate and coffee coming in bitter. It is smooth of texture and manages to completely hide the alcohol whilst still being harsh of flavour. There is a delicate use of sweet nuttiness to keep in style but break from the harsher flavours, which helps call to the dessert pecan pie imagery.

The brown sugar and sweet nut rises over time, and the beer really needs that to keep it from getting too harsh and yet dull. It is kind of interesting in what it does as a beer, but not really special. Maybe nut fans will disagree with me, but it doesn’t excite. I think that it may be the chalkiness putting me off, the beer is harsh enough already and it doesn’t need the element for contrast. It just leaves it a bit dry and a bit off in the finish.

So, interesting, generally not bad, but not one that demands to be tried, unless you are nuts for nuts. The name, however, is awesome.

Background: After finding my first few experiences of Clown Shoes brewery to be ok but nothing special I asked around for recommendations of what stood out from the brewery. Of the names I heard back, the one that stood out was this, Genghis Pecan Pie Porter. A porter made with brown sugar and roasted pecans, it sounded like something to add a nice twist to a solid style. This was picked up from Brewdog’s Guest Beer selection. This is the 2013 bottling, drunk 2014. After I finished the review, I drank the rest while watching John Oliver’s section on the Ferguson situation – which I recommend everyone watch, it is both funny and painfully spot on. I realise while reviewing this that I really could not say what a pecan tastes like really.

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