Review: Surly Coffee Bender Brown Ale with Coffee Added

I reviewed Surly's Bender Brown Ale a few months ago and I'm finally getting a chance to check out their Coffee Bender Brown Ale. Coffee Bender is available at a grand total of one store in all of Canada, Quality Inn Craft Beer Store in Winnipeg, making this store the only store outside the United States with this Surly beer!

Surly states that Coffee Bender refreshes like an iced-coffee, is aromatic as a bag of whole beans and satisfies like your favourite beer. Brewed with Guatemalan coffee.

Appearance: Pours dark brown with a bit of a reddish-brown cola-like hue to it. Good amount of creamy yellowish beige head on top that's reminiscent of an oatmeal stout but not as dark.

Aroma: Coffee! It's been a while since I've had a beer that's actually brewed with coffee. The beer has the rich roastiness of Guatemalan coffee, a bit of a peppery spiciness, a mild oaty cereal profile, hint of cocoa, and a light earthiness to it. The coffee is overpowering all the other notes of this beer for the most part.

Taste: Reminiscent of an oatmeal stout as it has rich roasted profile to it.. this time around it's a combo of roasted malt AND coffee. The flavour notes are coffee, a bit of a peppery spiciness to it, a hint of chocolate, light amount of oats, a hint of earthy peat, and a bit of caramel sweetness. Smooth on creamy on palate, and there's very minimal aftertaste that's mostly notes of coffee.

Overall Thoughts: Rich, dark, roasty. If you like a hefty stout, you'll love this.. and this isn't even a porter or stout! Since there's actual coffee added to it, it gives off a lot of roasty notes to it. Also, I'd recommend not drinking this before bed since it contains actual coffee, so you might not be able to get some sleep!

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