in Beer

Troegs – Java Head

Troegs is brewed in Hershey, PA and make a number of very nice beers.

Java Head is a stout brewed with coffee beans. A number of hobby brewers around here refer to any oatmeal and coffee brewed stout as a “breakfast beer”.

I’m not sure I’d recommend Java Head with its 7.5% abv as the perfect way to start your day, but it can make a nice way to end the work day.

The label describes it as:
“Each batch of JavaHead passes through our hopback vessel packed with whole leaf hops and a blend of coffee beans. Similar to using a French press, this process intensifies the nose and releases hints of coffee. The result is a lush, smooth mouthfeel balanced with cocoa, roast, and subtle coffee flavors.”

I suppose that would be helpful if I knew what a French press is, and maybe what ‘nose’ and ‘mouthfeel’ are.

It pours beautifully into a frosty glass. It starts looking like it is going to have no head, but finishes with a very nice heavy head. The aroma would indicate a sweet caramel flavor, but the first taste is more straight stout with a definite java/coffee theme. There is enough bitterness to it so that you know you are drinking beer, but not so much as to turn off the more casual beer drinker.

This is a dark beer, the sort that competes with Guinness for color.

Troegs is kind enough to share some of the recipe for this beer:
Alcohol by Volume: 7.5%
Hop Bitterness: 60 IBUs (not International Business Units!)
Color (SRM): Black
Availability: Year Round
Malts: Pilsner, Crystal, Chocolate, Roast
JuJu: Oats, Blend of Coffee Beans
Hops: Cluster, Chinook, Cascade
Yeast: Ale

If it were a 3 to 4% beer, it drinks well enough to really be a breakfast drink. At nearly 8% though, it still makes a very good beer to go with dinner.

Alright, I admit I know that a French press is a european coffee maker that forces hot water though ground coffee. It might be helpful to think of it as a poor man’s expresso machine. So if someone starts on about how much they love French press coffee, you know they’re just too cheap to buy an expresso machine. Despite the bizarre wording on the bottle, it is a good beer.