Evil Twin Brewing “Yin Taiji Stout”

March 19, 2013

There seems to be almost no end to killer new beer showing up in our neck of the woods these days. As the local palate and appreciation for well-made beer grows, so does the number of breweries willing to facilitate our demand.

There are still a lot of selections out there that we’ll have to continue to wait for, at least for now. It would be great if we could just pick up the phone and order whatever we wanted, but in reality there are numerous factors at play.

First, the breweries have to be able to make enough to go everywhere they’d like to establish their presence. Second, they have to acquire permission from the state on at least 3 different levels of government. Third, after the contracts are signed with the state, they have to submit their packaging artwork for approval. Last, they have to negotiate with regional beverage companies for distribution.

This becomes even more complex when it’s a “guest brew.” There are a number of talented beer makers out there who utilize others’ facilities; kind of like a pop-up restaurant where a chef takes over someone else’s kitchen for a night or so. Within this small circle of nomadic brewers, there’s always been one that stands out above the rest of the pack.

Evil Twin Brewing unofficially began when Danish home brewer, Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø, started making his own beer in 2003. By 2005, he had opened up the now-famous bottle shop Ølbutikken in Copenhagen to sell his very forward-thinking beverages. Up until recently, as many as ten different established breweries were being used to make his beer.

I’ve heard that Jeppe has recently collaborated with fellow nomad, and highly-regarded brewer, Brian Strumke of Stillwater to open their own facilities. This is excellent news! Price will come down and availability should increase.

Evil Twin currently has a limited number of flavors available in Florida. We just picked up Yin Imperial Taiji Stout. Jeppe’s intention was to marry this with another one he makes, Yang IPA, to create the perfect black and tan. Taiji, the root word of t’ai chi ch’uan here in the West, means ultimate pinnacle and infinite potentiality.

While the intent is to combine with its “other half,” Yin strikes a harmonious balance on its own. It is the blackest brown possible with a fine head of mocha that never seems to disappear. Thought-provoking scents of bittersweet cocoa and dark cherry mingle with roasted malt, smoke and coffee. Rich flavors of dark chocolate, espresso, dried fruit and molasses all combine for an experience akin to eating a liquor-filled chocolate candy. Yin’s texture is thick and oily with a fine carbonation tingle.

Thank you, Evil Twin. We’re looking forward to the rest of your family joining you soon.