Stone Brewing Presents: ‘Bean to Beer: A Cacao Story’ Celebrating Steadfast Artisanal Brewing
(Escondido, CA) – Stone Brewing ignites the holiday season with the release of Stone Xocoveza, a deliciously distinctive mocha stout brewed to stagger the senses with cinnamon, nutmeg, chocolate, coffee, vanilla, milk sugar and a mild punch of pasilla peppers. Reminiscent of Mexican hot chocolate, Stone Xocoveza in 12-ounce bottled six-packs can now be stacked in fridges. To mark the occasion, Stone Brewing presents: ‘Bean to Beer: A Cacao Story.’ The short-form documentary offers insight into the intensive process of crafting the ultimate artisanal beer.
‘From bean to beer,’ Stone Xocoveza is brewed with cacao sourced straight from Belize. Raw cacao beans are sorted, roasted, de-hulled and ground into chocolate all by hand at Stone Brewing under the tutelage of Belyzium brand cacao grower and chocolate maker Andrei Shibkov. Craftsmanship at its finest, the process allows for Stone’s brewers to work with expertly sourced, high-quality cacao, processed precisely to the needs of the Stone Xocoveza recipe. The outcome is amazing chocolate that imparts only the finest cocoa flavor upon one of the country’s best-selling holiday spiced stouts.
The aroma of Stone Xocoveza sets the mood for the season. Intense warmth of cinnamon and coffee precede nutmeg and peppers. Flavors of cocoa and cinnamon lead into coffee, nutmeg and vanilla. The fruitiness and mild heat of the pasilla peppers make for a smooth finish. The 8.1% full-bodied stout finds its balance with a strong malt bill plus German Perle and English East Kent Golding hops. As the beer warms, flavor combinations evolve keeping this beer as interesting as most family gatherings. Stone Xocoveza ranks an impressive BeerAdvocate score of 95%, among Stone’s very best.
“Stone Xocoveza continues to rally our fans into the holiday spirit, but it stands for even more than that here at Stone,” said Greg Koch, Stone Brewing executive chairman & co-founder. “This extraordinary beer dates back to our annual American Homebrewers Association competition of 2014 in which Chris Banker’s original recipe was selected as the winner and first brewed on a national scale. Its powerful flavor profile, innovative recipe and the way in which it lends itself to the use of such high-quality ingredients, make this a winner for us still today.”
This harmoniously balanced beer will age beautifully. Cellaring for months or even years will allow the malt character to evolve, making the cocoa and coffee flavors more prevalent.
Name: Stone Xocoveza
Stats: 8.1% ABV, 50 IBUs
Availability: 12-ounce bottles in seasonal six-packs and draft
Distribution: Australia, Berlin, Costa Rica, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Panama, Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan and nationwide in the U.S.
Find Beer: find.stonebrewing.com
Appearance: Pours black with a thick brown head.
Aroma: Intense cinnamon, cocoa and coffee are followed by nutmeg and peppers. As the beer warms up, the flavor combinations evolve and the cocoa and vanilla notes really start to open up.
Taste: Cocoa and cinnamon are at the forefront. The coffee, nutmeg and vanilla follow, and the fruitiness and mild heat of the pasilla peppers come through nicely on the finish. Chocolate is present throughout.
Palate: Full bodied and very smooth with a light bitterness. The sweetness adds a lot to this beer without being syrupy.
Overall: When we first brewed this beer in 2014, everyone on the brewing team was blown away by its multiple layers of flavor. The inspiration came from Mexican hot chocolate combined with coffee. We loved how wonderfully this beer showcases the spices, cocoa and subtle coffee roast flavors, so much that we continue to bring it back as an annual Stone special holiday release.
Starters: Bacon-Wrapped Figs, Roasted Pecans sprinkled with Cinnamon, Charred Brussels Sprouts**, Candied Salmon, Coconut Shrimp
Soups: Clam Chowder, Butternut Squash, White Bean, Sausage & Kale Soup**, Beef Stew, French Onion
Main Courses: Chicken Mole, Tofu Adobada*, Coffee-Dusted Fillet, Stuffed Poblano Chili, Mushroom Stroganoff, Lamb Chops, Traditional Strip Steak*
Cheeses: Camembert, Hook’s EWE CALF to be KIDding, Beehive Cheese Big John’s Cajun, Point Reyes Original Blue
Desserts: Coffee & Mascarpone Mousse Cake**, Chocolate Lava Cake, Pecan Pie, Cinnamon Rolls, Xocorosa Ice Cream Sandwich*