Despite our oddly mild winter, I’ve been on a bit of a dark beer kick, lately. And with St Patrick’s Day coming up next week, I’ve been thinking and writing about the pleasures of Irish Dry Stout.
But another, rarer dark beer style, Scotch Ale, came up on my radar, recently, with the Monday Night Brewing and American Spirit Works collaboration that produced a smoky, barrel-aged Scotch-style whiskey.
The inspiration and main ingredient for the project was Monday Night’s Drafty Kilt Scotch Ale, a longtime favorite, and my Beer Pick this week.
Drafty Kilt Scotch Ale
Monday Brewing Co., Atlanta, GA
Available in six-pack glass bottles and on draft, including a nitro version
A tweaked example of the fairly rare Scotch ale style, Drafty Kilt features deep flavors of cherrywood-smoked malt, chocolate malt and roasted barley. A touch of Columbus and Willamette hops add moderate bitterness to its smooth, rich character, with hints of vanilla and butterscotch.
In addition to the original, Monday Night offers a year-round nitro version of Drafty Kilt that’s often available at pubs and beers bars, such as Ormsby’s, Creetwood Tavern and North River Tavern. It exhibits a creamier mouthfeel, and a much more muted sense of smokiness and bitterness. Other interesting Draft Kilt iterations have included bourbon-aged and cinnamon and cocoa-flavored.
Monday Night recommends pairing Draft Kilt with chocolate, smoked meats and strong cheeses, and I agree. But I think it would also be a good match for roasted meats, including pork, lamb or beef, or creme brûlée.