When Avery Brewing says it's going to make a peanut butter beer as part of its acclaimed Barrel-Aged Series, you known the roof of your mouth is going to be sticky. After all, Avery makes the most of its ingredients, oak barrels and fermentable sugars, often turning in high-ABV wonders. For the latest installment in the series, Nuttiest Professor, Avery has again made an imperial stout, this one with peanut flour. Then the beer was aged in bourbon barrels and conditioned on peanuts. And, yeah, it's coming in hot, at 15 percent ABV. The beer will be released on tap at the brewery on June 26 and will be available at a limited number of liquor stores throughout July (until bottles sell out). This is the 45th release in Avery's Barrel-Aged Series.
And although this will be the biggest peanut or peanut butter beer made in Colorado, it isn't the first. There's already a growing line of excellent nutty beers for people who like that kind of thing. Most are just one-offs or seasonal brews; Liquid Mechanics and Living the Dream are the only two year-rounders that I know of. Here's a list of notable or regular peanut butter beers from around the Denver area.
Peanut Butter Porter
Zephyr Brewing, Denver
An occasional beer at Zephyr, Peanut Butter Porter is brewed with peanut butter, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups and Goldings hops, which stand out slightly, giving this beer an unusual blend of bitter and sweet.
Helluva Caucasian Stout
Living the Dream Brewing, Littleton
Named for the Dude's favorite beverage in The Big Lebowski, this beer was modeled after a White Russian, but with a peanut butter twist. Boasting coffee, chocolate and vanilla on the nose, it was made with all three of those ingredients, along with peanut butter, which is very muted but still present.
Peanut Butter Porter
Upslope Brewing, Boulder
This one-off beer, which was released earlier this year, can still be found on a few shelves around town. To make the 5.3 percent ABV brew, Upslope says it "started out by slightly tweaking a tried-and-true porter recipe that the staff loves" by focusing "on a distinct roasted peanut taste to mingle with the sweetness of the porter."
Peanut Butter Porter
Liquid Mechanics Brewing, Lafayette
One of my favorite beers from 2015, Peanut Butter Porter has a chocolately character coming from its porter base and just enough peanut butter to remind you it's there without overdoing it. The sweetness is like a muted peanut butter candy flavor and aroma. It's also just thick enough, and very smooth.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Porter
Dry Dock Brewing, Aurora
This draft-only beer shows up occasionally at the brewery for limited runs. It is brewed with cacao nibs and typically weights in at about 5.5 percent ABV.
Crustless and Imperial Crustless Peanut Butter and Jelly Porter
Ursula Brewery, Aurora
This one tastes amazingly just the way it sounds. The peanut butter is there, but it doesn't overwhelm the jelly, just like in the real thing. It's sweet at 6 percent ABV; the Imperial comes in at twice that. It's an occasional beer at Ursula, and bottles can sometimes be found around town on liquor-store shelves, as well.
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Peanut Butter Cup Achromatic
Weldwerks Brewing, Greeley
Like most of the Weldwerks Achromatic Series, this one is like alcoholic candy, and it tastes exactly as advertised, with rich chocolate and peanut butter oozing out of the already-chewy imperial stout. The brewery adds peanut flour and cacao nibs to amp of the flavor in this 10.5 percent ABV beer. Find it on draft on rare occasions.
Depravity Imperial Peanut Butter Cup Stout
Renegade Brewing, Denver
For my money, this is the smoothest, richest and most delicious of the peanut butter beers on the Denver market, but, like a rainbow, its beauty is fleeting since Renegade only produces it once a year, for New Year's Eve. In 2016, the brewery canned Depravity for the first time, which meant the beer stuck around town a little longer. Brewed with dehydrated peanut butter and real peanut butter cups, this imperial milk stout is comfort beer at its finest.