In this final part of the Vocation Showcase series, I take a look at Sweet Temptation and dive back into Imperial Kirsch. Sweet Temptation is a chocolate caramel stout brewed in collaboration with Brew York; it contains dairy and gluten. Imperial Kirsch is quite possibly my favourite beer and I refuse to shut up about it; it’s vegan-friendly but contains gluten.
Welcome back to part three of this series checking out Vocation Brewery’s Showcase Selection! If you’ve missed them, you can catch up on the first segment on their core beers and part 2 on their special IPAs. Week three is bittersweet: both because it’s when we say goodbye to Vocation for now, but also because these stouts are seriously syrupy.
This tasty concoction is the result of a collaboration between Vocation Brewery in Hebden Bridge and Brew York based nearby in – you guessed it – York. If this beer is anything to go by, I need to pay these Brew Yorkers a visit.
The can art for Sweet Temptation is a pretty accurate reflection on what’s inside: a dark brown, almost black body with golden-brown head. The chocolate caramel-style label also comes through on the nose: there are some seriously strong caramel and chocolate aromas, along with a little cherry and blackberry and a touch of roasted malt.
The sweetness intensifies on the palate with flavours of caramel and chocolate. It’s fairly salty, too. The malt character grows stronger on the finish as the caramel eases off, though it’s still very sweet.
Sweet Temptation is one of those beers that doesn’t taste like beer. That presents an opportunity: if you have a friend or loved one who swears they can’t stand beer but will happily tuck into a chocolate tart, maybe suggest they give this a try.
I have to put my hands up here: this review is a bit of a cop out. Firstly, because I’ve reviewed this beer before. Second, because it’s no wonder at all that I adore this beer.
Arguably it’s a little too much: a little too strong, a little too sweet, a little too thick. But I’d argue these are the qualities that make Imperial Kirsch so amazing. It pushes the boundaries of what’s possible in brewing.
Still on track to be my favourite beer of 2021.