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Des de Moor
Best beer and travel writing award 2015, 2011 -- British Guild of Beer Writers Awards
Accredited Beer Sommelier
Writer of "Probably the best book about beer in London" - Londonist
"A necessity if you're a beer geek travelling to London town" - Beer Advocate
"A joy to read" - Roger Protz
"Very authoritative" - Tim Webb.
"One of the top beer writers in the UK" - Mark Dredge.
"A beer guru" - Popbitch.
Des de Moor


Maui CoCoNut PorTeR

ABV: 5.7%
Origin: Lahaina, Hawaii, USA


I’ d been wanting to try this celebrated speciality beer since I met its brewer, the charming Garrett W Marrero, at the Rake in earlier this year, when he was over to brew a cask version of it for the Wetherspoons beer festival.  I never got to taste that version, brewed at Banks’s in Wolverhampton, so I was delighted to run into both Garrett and his beers at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver.

Maui is, perhaps surprisingly, not the only significant player in this far flung outpost of American craft brewing, but has certainly caused a stir far beyond the Hawaiian archipelago since being founded as a modest brewpub in 2005. Among other things it’s noteworthy as one of the US breweries challenging received opinion about canned beer. When the decision was taken to package the beer, cans were chosen principally for environmental reasons and in line with a policy on local sourcing — cans are made on Hawaii while bottles have to be imported from the mainland. They also recycle more easily and using less energy than bottles, and are much lighter to export. Canning technology has improved enough to eliminate concerns about “tinny” taste — over the course of GABF I got to try several craft beers from cans and was impressed to find they were none the worse for it. 

CoCoNut PorTeR implements the local sourcing policy by using Hawaiian toasted coconut alongside six varieties of pale and dark malts and a relatively light sprinkling of Cascade and CTZ hops. The result pours a very dark ruby, with a bubbly light beige head. A luxuriously creamy coffee and chocolate aroma extends its smoothness to a big but refreshing palate, very well integrated with toasty brown malts, subtle hops and a definite coconut note. A dry, roasty finish still has that lovely rich coconut touch which compliments the dark malt flavours splendidly, with a powdery dry hop note emerging at the very end. It might sound as a gimmicky as all that erratic capitalisation, but it works amazingly well. A new classic.

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