Arkham’s Finest by Modern Brewery

I’m continuing my exploration of the St. Louis stout scene with a brewery that got it’s start at Harvard of all places. Modern Brewery, labeled Beer Fusion, is nestled in kind of a weird locale on Manchester next to Kuva Coffee Roasters. The taproom is actually the last building in what looks like a miniature industrial park set perpendicular to the street. So if you’re not paying attention you could easily miss it. I’m a big fan of Kuva’s coffee and they have formed a sort of partnership with Modern, which I find interesting.

aviary-image-1532734699718Arkham’s Finest is labeled as an American stout at 8% ABV and 50 IBU. This beer is a collaboration of sorts with Kuva Coffee Roasters and Rick Jordan Chocolatier (now that’s something I can get behind!). Coffee and chocolate…two of my favorite things. Kuva offers up the Peru Chilchos bean, which they apparently have exclusivity to in the Amazon. Rick Jordan roasts his own cacao, which is rare in St. Lous, so this combo should make for an interesting beer.

But it doesn’t.

Arkham’s Finest at first glance appears to be fabulous. It looks great in the glass with that thick, frothy head, and the lacing is incredible. However, the beer was a lot thinner in the mouth than I expected. For a stout with this heaviness, I expected a thicker mouthfeel. On the tongue, this beer is very bitter. If there’s chocolate in this beer, it’s bitter, dark chocolate. Don’t get me wrong, I adore dark chocolate but partnered with the coffee, this tastes a bit like ash. Modern states this beer features flavors including the “depth from the entire chocolate spectrum (from creamy to dark to bittersweet), and earthy coffee roastiness.” Well, I guess they nailed it, except for the creamy part. I like a decent bitter stout, but there’s something missing in this one. I really wanted to like Arkham’s Finest a lot more than I did. It’s a decent beer, not a great beer.

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