Right Brain Brewery | Naughty Girl Stout
I’m a sucker for Girl Scout cookies. When the little ladies are selling door-to-door, I lose control and start checking off order-form-boxes wildly. When they’re sitting at a table outside the supermarket, I slide my arm across the display shoveling all available product into the cart. And of course, I double down on Thin Mints.
Have you ever eaten “a” Thin Mint? I say “a”, as in 1, because I eat them by the sleeve. Much to my wife’s disgust. Paired with beer, particularly a stout, it is nirvana. So, Right Brain Brewery out of Traverse City, Michigan gets a huge round of applause for saving a step and straight up liquefying Thin Mints with their Naughty Girl Stout.
As you pour, the beer cascades in lovely fashion down the glass. Then, the brightness of the mint bouquet results in a deeeeep inhale. It doesn’t clear your sinuses, you just get a nice coolness that comes with natural mint. Swirling it about your mouth, there’s the feeling of a million tiny bubbles popping which, coupled with the cool mint and stout chocolatiness, is killer. Post gulp, the aftertaste has a pleasant minty hint. No weird, coated-tongue sensation that comes with artificial flavor.
Which brings up another bonus of this beer. As stated on the can, this is organic mint — AKA REAL — and on the website they note it is locally grown and “biodynamic”. I like the sound of all of this, but am unfamiliar with biodynamically grown food. So I reached out to Right Brain for some clarity and got this helpful response from Jeff Houser:
We source our mint from Light of Day Organics in Traverse City. They have a method of farming called biodynamic, which they apply to the mint they grow. Biodynamic farming methods, in a nutshell, are based on recommendations made by Dr. Rudolf Steiner, using a Lunar calendar as a guide to planting and harvesting, the application of certain preparations, positive intention, and a sincere dedication and devotion to healing the Earth by exhibiting a reverence for every created thing. They have seen incredibly positive results in soil vitality, and in the quality and quantity of their yields since incorporating these ancient methods of farming wisdom into their practice. Biodynamics is a holistic, sustainable form of agriculture that dates all the way back to the 1920’s. It takes into account everything from the cycles of the moon and stars to the soil, plants, animals and people, with the ultimate goal of making each garden or farm a healthy self-sustaining ecosystem.
I shared that verbatim because it illustrates how much thought was put into this stout. I’m sure Right Brain could have cut some corners and sourced their mint in a simpler fashion. But they didn’t. The mint is grown in the same city that they brew their beer. Once they have it in house, the chopped up leaves are used to create a sort of mint tea using cheese cloth and 180-200 degree water. After steeping, they add the cheese cloth with mint and the tea that is created to a conditioning tank. The final step is adding the beer itself to create their delightful Naughty Girl Stout.
So what’s the upshot? Liquid Thin Mints. Thin Mints in a Can. Thin Mint Beer. You get the idea. Just the right amount of sweetness balanced so as not to be saccharine. If you’ve ever had a mint beer that didn’t strike your fancy, definitely give this one a shot. Particularly while you’re demolishing a box of Girl Scout cookies.
Follow Niel on Twitter @WaveTrainLLC and Instagram @WaveTrainLLC