Evasion Brewing Holé Molé Imperial Chocolate Stout
with Chilies, Cinnamon, Almonds, and Vanilla
Tonight is a decadent one. I am pouring and reviewing the Evasion Brewing Holé Molé Imperial Chocolate Stout which is brewed in a dedicated gluten free brewery in McMinnville, Oregon. This is a 8% ABV stout that boasts some exciting ingredients including chilies, cinnamon, almonds, and vanilla.
This Evasion Brewing stout is brewed on a full malt bill that includes millet, rice, certified gluten free oats, and buckwheat. (stay clear if you don’t tolerate oats!) It also contains a whopping 4 different varieties of chilies (Morita, Habanero, Ancho, and Guajillo). This stout boasts one hell of a powerful ingredient list, to say the least.
I have to admit though, this Holé Molé beer pour is a bit heartbreaking for me…because it wasn’t until tonight that I realized that it contains lactose. (Which I do not tolerate, unless it’s in a raw form.) The truly heartbreaking part is that I’ve actually tasted this beer before, at the Market of Choice tasting event the last time Evasion Brewing was in Bend.
I must have missed the disclaimer (if there was one) about the lactose that day, but I did only have a tiny taste after all. Unfortunately, I now know just how amazing this beer is, and that I am going to have to pour and review it, only to then pass it off to a friend to enjoy for me. 😭 So…spoiler alert: This beer is awesome.
The description isn’t bad either…
A dense layered cake of flavors fight for control of your tongue. Chocolate and cinnamon in this corner, facing off against a tag team of chilies. A very low, subtle heat is felt by the end of the fight.Holé Molé Imperial Chocolate Stout
The Taste Test
Holé Molé Imperial Chocolate Stout
The most surprising part about this beer pour is that the Holé Molé Stout doesn’t pour with any head at all. I wasn’t quite expecting that. It has a velvety black-brown color, and is extremely opaque. The carbonation can be spotted dancing up the middle of the glass, and overall, it appears to be a pretty thick stout.
EDIT: Interestingly enough, the longer I allowed this beer to sit, it began to form a thin ring of bubbles along the outside edge of the glass…adding to the visual appeal of the pour.
Chocolate and chilies dominate the Holé Molé’s aroma. There’s a gentle spice to the nose that really peaks your curiosity while teasing the heat of the chilies. The first sip is drenched in complexity thanks to the Morita, Habanero, Ancho, and Guajillo chilies, but also has a smooth background of chocolate and vanilla to carry the chilies through the tasting experience.
The 4 varieties of chilies gracefully blend together to create a complex profile that emphasizes their flavor more than their heat. This beer starts spicy-sweet at the front of the palate, and then presents a rich and flavorful full-body through the middle, finishing up with a gentle heat that coats the mouth and then continues to linger.
It’s worth noting that I am a fan of spicy food and drink, so please take that into account when I identify the spice level as mild. Overall, I find the chili’s spice very warm and unoffensive. The carbonation perfectly supports the body’s texture, and for as many ingredients that are used to brew this beer, it is quite smooth and well-balanced.
It’s worth mentioning that the ingredient list for the Holé Molé Imperial Chocolate Stout includes both piloncillo sugar and actual chocolate. So these chocolate flavors are not just coming from the malt roast characteristics. Drinking this beer is like eating a dark chocolate bar that has chilies and almonds inside.
My favorite part about this stout is that with every sip, I honestly feel like I’m feasting on a Mexican Molé Pablano dinner–AND a delicious spicy-sweet dessert–all in one! It’s truly a full experience. You can taste some alcohol in this 8% stout, but it is actually quite well masked by the characteristics of the chilies, which makes the heat’s origin somewhat dynamic.
Now that I’ve poured and reviewed this beautiful Holé Molé Imperial Chocolate Stout, it’s time to reluctantly hand it over to my (very lucky) friend who will “take one for the team” and enjoy the rest of this Imperial Stout for me. ;)
Evasion Brewing is doing such an amazing job with these experimental beers. I’m continually impressed with their head brewer’s constant creativity and finesse when it comes to crafting unique and complex beers that have us all constantly forgetting we’re gluten free.
Thank you Ben! 🍻 Keep up the good work!
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