Beer review – Siren x Slim Pickens, Accept All Cookies

After spending the best part of three weeks guzzling beer all across Japan, you’d perhaps forgive me for taking a little time off beer to recover.

Fortunately I’ll have no need for such forgiveness today. The jetlag fog has cleared, and we’re easing back into things gently with a chunky imperial stout and a GDPR joke.

We already know Siren: their Broken Dream breakfast stout won over the judges at the 2018 real ale awards, and Undercurrent is my usual choice when out drinking at what passes for my local. Slim Pickens is a less familiar name this side of the Atlantic, though I can only imagine they enjoy more notoriety in their native Florida where they produce ciders and meads with delightful names like “Chubby in the Pool”.

No bready flavours, despite the background bread bin

The lovechild of these two breweries is Accept All Cookies, a reference to the infuriating banner messages adorning every website (yes, including this one) since the EU imposed new data protection laws. Allegedy this beer tries to use cookies to collect information about you in a good way. Good thing I use a VPN.

Accept All Cookies is an inky, oily black with no head or visible carbonation. The aroma is intense: molasses and chocolate. Strong and simple, just like me.

The taste is a little more complex, with flavours of cherry and cola backing up with chocolate and molasses sniffed earlier. The mouthfeel is interesting: this is a thick, oily beer. It coats the mouth and lingers; a long, warm, chocolate finish.

It’s a decent beer, plenty of warmth and intensity. But, and I realise this is very much out of character for me: I don’t love it. Accept All Cookies has the defining features of an imperial stout, but half the joy of this style is the complexity that can develop when you have all that ABV to play with. There’s no vanilla on the palate, but this beer is a bit too vanilla for me. 3/5

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