Milkshakes. Beer. Together, what could be more American, and more perfect for the first day of summer. In the interest of some serious culinary R&D, BiteClub took on the rather open-eneded recipe from we recently got from Samuel Adams for a Cream Stout beer milkshake:
– One cup ice cream (see results below for optimal pairing)
– One cup milk
– 2 Tbsp sugar (I found this unnecessary)
– 1Tbsp malt powder
– 3 Tbsp Samuel Adams Cream Stout (frankly, using a little more is
fine. You can use any type of beer, but a stouter beer lends a
chocolate & caramel tone that’s especially nice)
Blend and serve.
You see the problem here. What kind of ice cream? BiteClub smelled a trip to the freezer section to find out.
Purchased: Vanilla Haagen-Dazs, Ben & Jerry’s Crème Brulee, chocolate Haagen-Dazs, Hawaiian Lehua honey & sweet cream (a new Reserve flavor from Haagen-Dazs), coffee Haagen-Dazs, and Dulce de Leche Haagen-Dazs.
Now, this whole idea, as you might have read previously, stemmed from an Aspen
luncheon featuring a rather upscale version of the beer milkshake paired
with a buttercream beer cake and beer ice cream. Yeah. After spending a small fortune on ice cream, BiteClub paired the shakes more modest snacks: Kettle Buffalo Bleu chips, Safeway organic pretzels and ball park in-shell peanuts.
With the help of my favorite beverage and snack consultant, Jason, BiteClub and Co. conducted a late-night blind tasting (meaning neither of us knew which flavor we were drinking) and paired each shake with a salty snack.
After 25 minutes at the blender and some very sticky fingers, here are the results of the BiteClub’s Beer Milkshake Taste-Off for your stout-inspired bliss:
A. Vanilla Beer Milkshake: A great, even flavor if not totally exciting. Pairs great with pretzels and VH1.
B. Crème Brulee Beer Milkshake: Thought the caramel and cream might work. Ick. Dead wrong. Waay to sweet. Teeth hurting. Save ice cream for slathering over fresh raspberries.
C. Chocolate Beer Milkshake: A nice bitterness and darkness to contrast the sweetness of the ice cream. Pairs delightfully with Buffalo chips and Barry White.
D. Honey Beer Milkshake: Not terrible for a dessert. Spoon over your partner.
E. Coffee Beer Milkshake: Ding, ding, we have a winner. “This would be damn good in the morning,” reports Jason. Intense and robust, it’s the only milkshake that we could really taste the beer in. Pair with cold pizza and a cigarette. Or, you know, a little Baileys if you’re feeling frisky.
F. Dulce de Leche Beer Milkshake: Dulce de Icky. Again, hoping the caramel flavors would work well. Nope. But after five beer milkshakes, we can’t really promise objectivity.
Best bets: Coffee ice cream is the clear winner here, with chocolate in second and vanilla a distant third. But in the end, BiteClub has to admit that when it comes to beer, ice cream and potato chips, there really is no wrong way about it.
Samuel Adams Cream Stout is available at BevMo, $7.99; all other supplies purchased at Safeway.