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CP Photo: Owen Gabbey
Eleventh hour BYS 2021 – cinnamon-vanilla-bourbon
Beer of the week: Burn Your Suit 2021 – Cinnamon Vanilla Bourbon
Brewery: Eleventh hour. 3711 Charlotte Street, Lawrenceville. 11thhourbrews.com While some people might like a hard cider or pumpkin spice latte in the fall, give me a nice, filling stout as soon as the weather changes. We’ll ignore for a minute that it was 83 degrees over the weekend and just estimate that stout season has started. And what better way to start it than with Eleventh Hour’s anniversary stout, Burn Your Suit: Cinnamon Vanilla Bourbon.
CP photo: Alex Kilyanek
Owen Gabby and Archer, Eleventh Hour’s brewery dog, become new BFFs.
Everything about the Lawrenceville Brewery’s fourth anniversary celebration on Saturday felt like a much-needed warm welcome. A happy group of people lining up for a beer release, the first I’ve seen in almost two years. Great beer and fantastic wood-fired pizza served by Alberta’s food truck. Oh, and even the brewery’s house dog, Archer, became my new best friend, mostly because of the pizza I mentioned.
The anniversary crown jewel was the latest iteration of their Burn Your Suit series from Eleventh Hour. Barrel-aged stouts with a myriad of different subtleties, these are an immensely popular line in Pittsburgh, and for good reason. On Saturday, the brewery released its 2021 variants, including a 4 Roses Bourbon Barrel, a Woodford Reserve Barrel, and a Vanilla variant. For me, however, the winner was the Cinnamon Vanilla Bourbon.
Perhaps the only thing I like more about beer than a good fall stout is vanilla well-used, and Eleventh Hour kills it in that regard. The vanilla gives a strong stout a soft and sweet feel without being too thick. Add in the perfect fall element of cinnamon and you’ll check lots of boxes. The cinnamon gives the beer a certain spiciness, which makes it a rich choice for enjoying around the autumn fire. The whole thing smells like a late September night, with a beer that tastes like a dessert, similar to a roasted s’mores.
On the bottle it is recommended to enjoy the beer at around 50 degrees or a little warm, and I tend to agree. Cold gives you a very damp experience, every aspect of the bourbon barrel hits you in the face with full force. But let it sit for a while and the full variety of flavors will come out and really shine. It’s a great beer brewed for a great event. Congratulations to Eleventh Hour on four years, may I take Archer home with me now?