Everyone loves ice cream, whether you're a vanilla person or more adventurous with your desserts. And porter is always a classic, so combining the two makes a lot of sense to me.
North Riding Brewery have taken a safe approach with their ice cream choices, choosing the evergreen flavours of vanilla and chocolate to flavour their porter with vanilla pods and demerara sugar to help create the creamy sweetness of ice cream.
North Riding Brewery have quite a solid reputation for their porters, with their range of weird and wonderful flavours becoming synonymous with their brand image: that brown label with the still design now instantly recognisable.
There's a big chocolate hit on the aroma with a sweetness underlying it that makes it smell a little like a hot chocolate, but cold obviously. The pour is a little thin but this isn't a beefy double-figured ABV stout, so I wouldn't expect it to be massive.
The texture is quite creamy and smooth, but there's also a little harshness from the carbonation which actually adds a bit of character to it. The flavour is quite malty, but with a chocolate flavour running alongside the malt all the way through the profile along with a much more subtle touch of vanilla.
There's a roasted flavour to it towards the end which works really well with the vanilla flavour, leaving a slightly bittersweet aftertaste characteristic of cocoa.
North Riding Brewery's bottles are all the same - they don't really go in for doing things in different volumes, which must make their entire operation a lot easier. It also means you get more beer, as they're all 500ml bottles, happy days.
This one follows the same kind of design as all their dark beers: brown label with their still logo on the side, beer names sideways down the side of the logo and a little on the front about the beer and the ABV. A little design feature on this one is the Mr Whippy style ice cream on the top of their logo with sprinkles that adds a nice touch.
The back is what you would expect of such simplicity: a list of ingredients and all the relevant information required. No point in making it more exotic than it needs to be, in true Yorkshire spirit. Aye, tha's reyt.
Yorkshire Craft Beers have some of this in stock, along with more of North Riding Brewery's range to fill your basket with. We got ours from Beer Central in Sheffield, our old faithful. So if you're in Yorkshire, check out your local beershop!