1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Reunion: A Beer For Hope 2011 - Shmaltz Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Reunion: A Beer For Hope 2011Reunion: A Beer For Hope 2011

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

193 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 193
Reviews: 130
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 12.6%
Wants: 4
Gots: 9 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Shmaltz Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Brown Ale |  7.30% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

An Imperial Brown Ale with chocolate, cocoa nibs, vanilla & chili peppers.

(Beer added by: Jason on 05-13-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 193 | Reviews: 130 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Flounder57


3.78/5  rDev -0.8%

12 oz bottle was poured into a tumbler.

Appearance: The beer poured a tiny head that reduced pretty much to nothing. It is a dark brown color with some vision when at the bottom of the glass when put up to the light.

Smell: a lot of sweet maltiness here, some mocha, a little spiciness from the peppers, dark fruits, vanilla, and almost has the same scents as a dark ale. Interesting.

Taste: Very interesting here. Vanilla and spiciness from the peppers are the most noticeable up front. Mocha is there too

Mouthfeel: smooth, spicy, full bodied, some burn to it, medium carbonation, and a very special beer on the palate.

Overall: Not a shabby beer for a ABA. Chili peppers are a nice addition, but for some people it could be much. I enjooyed the spice and happy to have gotten this from volunteering the EBF in Boston back in February.

08-18-2012 04:34:23 | More by Flounder57
Photo of WastingFreetime


3.88/5  rDev +1.8%

Reviewed from tasting notes.

Dark brown color, 1cm tan head with a few minute's worth of stability and minimal lacing on the glasses' surface.

Smells of a roasted malt, dark chocolate, and just a hint of licorice and vanilla.

Tastes of all the elements from the nose and also has a brief lift of spicy chile heat on the finish, some mineral hard water finish aspects, and some interesting root beer-like flavor moments. Overall, plays out like a mole sauce with not quite enough chile heat to counterbalance the chocolate.

Medium body and carbonation level, soft and smooth texture.

My obligatory complaint about this one is that the chile aspect is underwhelming. It needs some more spicy zest to really shine IMHO. As it is, is tastes and presents like a beer version of a slightly flawed mole sauce. If only it were a perfect mole sauce...

08-12-2012 20:52:11 | More by WastingFreetime
Photo of GrindFatherBob

New York

4/5  rDev +5%

08-05-2012 11:33:50 | More by GrindFatherBob
Photo of yamar68


3.9/5  rDev +2.4%

Poured from 22oz bomber to McDonald's happy meal mug, circa early 1990's:

Pours like a thick root beer - dark brown body with some hazy clarity, topped with a loose light brown finger of head.

Kind of takes the direction of a brown ale on the nose... milk chocolate malts, a bit of hard water character, some fresh cream. No chile presence which is disappointing for me, but it doesn't detract from the beer that it is.

Rather nice. Those peppers actual provide a bit of chipotle smoke that compliments the chocolatey brown ale profile. Super smooth. No bite at all.

Glad I tried this one. I wish more bombers of this quality were priced similarly.

07-28-2012 02:12:13 | More by yamar68
Photo of nmann08

District of Columbia

3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

07-26-2012 16:56:58 | More by nmann08
Photo of bluckbeyes


4/5  rDev +5%

07-19-2012 18:26:20 | More by bluckbeyes
Photo of bluesplit63


3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

07-04-2012 20:54:25 | More by bluesplit63
Photo of DocJitsu


3.68/5  rDev -3.4%

Pours a very dark brown with red highlights in the sun. A foamy, taupe colored head forms quickly and stubbornly lingers. Aromas of toffee, white chocolate, sorghum, and wood. The mouthfeel is viscous and smooth. Sweet flavors of chocolate and sorghum occur first. The bitterness of fresh chili pepper and coffee acidity compliment the hop finish. it's ok. Not super. I was excited to try it, so I was a little let down.

07-03-2012 01:45:21 | More by DocJitsu
Photo of beer2day

North Carolina

3.78/5  rDev -0.8%

Dark earthy brown pour with 2 fingers of densely packed cream head. Not much retention, but very nice lace.

Nose is more about cocoa than Terrapin's version. Chiles come through, but behind the nibs.

Taste is sweeter and less abrasive than Terrapin, but not as rich and chocolate-filled. Light hops in the finish do make it through the chiles.

Medium bodied and actually rather light.

Overall, I'd give the edge to the Terrapin version - but not by much.

06-19-2012 02:03:29 | More by beer2day
Photo of dcellis

South Carolina

3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

06-13-2012 12:23:21 | More by dcellis
Photo of zeledonia


3.68/5  rDev -3.4%

Picked up this bottle to compare it to the Terrapin version (which I really liked).

Pours very dark brown, but clear with mahogany tones when I hold it to the light. Massive, frothy, cascading, dense light tan head. Excellent retention and big clumps of foamy lacing. Even when my glass is almost empty, there's still a thick layer of foam on the surface. Doesn't get much better.

Smell is dominated by the chili pepper. Behind that, I can find some faint grassy hops, but the sweet malts that ought to be the showcase of a beer like this don't really come through.

Taste is lighter on the chili, but still isn't doing it for me. Once again, the malty flavors just aren't there to the degree I want them to. Bland, slightly nutty malts, followed by grassy mildly bitter hops, accented by a pinch of chili. Oh, and what about that cocoa and vanilla mentioned on the label? If I can taste it, it's only as a light rounding off of the flavor at the end.

Mouthfeel is quite pleasant. Medium-bodied, carbonation that kicks up and fades away exactly when I want it to, and a smooth fluffy finish. I like it.

A decent beer, but all those funny additives don't seem to come through. I liked the Terrapin version of this beer a lot better. Appearance and mouthfeel are top-notch, though.

06-04-2012 03:01:12 | More by zeledonia
Photo of joefc


3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

06-01-2012 01:49:49 | More by joefc
Photo of cvm4


3.8/5  rDev -0.3%

A - Pours dark brown, leaves a finger tan head.

S - Right away, vanilla and chocolate hits your nose. Very pleasant sweet smell meshes well with some of the darker fruits.

T - The beer doesn't follow the nose with sweetness. Typical brown ale but sways when the cocoa and vanilla comes up. Slight warming effect from the chili peppers.

M - A bit light here. Good carbonation but a bit too watery.

O - A very interesting imperial brown ale. Could be better if the mouthfeel was bolder. But, all in all it was a pleasant drinking beer.

05-31-2012 23:22:31 | More by cvm4
Photo of 6demonbag


4/5  rDev +5%

05-30-2012 05:05:06 | More by 6demonbag
Photo of TimH

3/5  rDev -21.3%

05-19-2012 18:03:36 | More by TimH
Photo of t420o


3.7/5  rDev -2.9%

Schmaltz/terrapin reunion 11

Dark imperial ale brewed with cocoa nibs, vanilla, and chipotle peppers

A- pour produces a 1-1/2 finger mocha colored head that rests atop a medium brown body. Leaves ok lacing 3.5   

S- coacoa, dark chocoalte, vanilla, molasses, peppers, other spice, peaty smells very good I like the balance of sweet and heat 4 

T- wow this beer has a lot going on! First it's a vanilla/chocolate mixture, a wave of peppers hits in the middle and it finishes with a vanilla/chocolate/ caramel/pepper mixture in the end. Not spicy at all which i was kind of hoping for. Abv is hidden very well.  It is actually quite pleasant and enjoyable. 3.5

M- good mouthfeel but the carbonation is a bit much 3.5  

O- a very interesting and quite good veer that I enjoyed. Great effort on making a unique brew. 4

05-17-2012 23:26:51 | More by t420o
Photo of soulfly1492


3.9/5  rDev +2.4%

Aroma: Mild overall. Sweet and roasty dark malt. Lots of molasses.Cocoa and spicy pepper.

Appearance: Pours pitch black. Huge light brown head. Lots of sticky lacing. Great retention.

Taste: Cocoa, coffee, some bitter roasted malts. Sharp citrus hops. Mild spicy pepper. The aftertaste is of semi-sweet chocolate. Mild vanilla. No alcohol can be detected.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body. Mild carbonation. Syrupy and oily, a slight drying sensation. Spicy.

Overall: Not to style (of course) but interesting. Not very bold. Could use more dark/roasty malts. Is a very pleasant brew nonetheless. The best part is the chocolate at the aftertaste.

05-07-2012 01:46:58 | More by soulfly1492
Photo of atone315


4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

04-29-2012 23:19:20 | More by atone315
Photo of DersOne


3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

04-29-2012 19:42:56 | More by DersOne
Photo of GarthDanielson

North Carolina

3.85/5  rDev +1%

Poured from a bomber into a true pint, the beer is a dark, vibrant, ruby-highlighted brown color with a tall head on the pour that settles slowly into a thin, dense, small bubbled, tan head. Sparse lacing along the glass as you drink. Aromas are muddled, with a slightly watered down roasted nut sweetness, some bitter cocoa scents, and an earthy character. Flavors are rich and sweet, with a nutty and butterscotch backbone riding a smooth, light body. SOme roasty characteristics throughout give some complexity to the brew. The aftertaste continues with the complex malt profile, again with a touch of roast/smoke to enhance the butterscotch and toffee flavors. Surprisingly light finish with a moderate linger. Decent brew.

04-18-2012 21:47:23 | More by GarthDanielson
Photo of jriggins6


3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

04-13-2012 20:35:58 | More by jriggins6
Photo of Mora2000


3.9/5  rDev +2.4%

Thanks to Cavie for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a dark brown color with dark red highlights and a tan head. The aroma is full of roasted and chocolate malt, with not too much else coming through. The flavor is more complex. I get some milk chocolate and roasted malt, as well a a little bit of spice from the chili peppers. All three characteristics work well together and give the beer a unique flavor. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

04-13-2012 20:20:23 | More by Mora2000
Photo of dbossman


3.73/5  rDev -2.1%

A: Dark brown with a reddish tint and a steady brown head and pretty nice lacing

S: Quite a lot going on here: chocolate and vanilla and peppers for sure plus some darker fruits and some slight vinous qualities but mostly this is a sweet chocolate and vanilla bomb

T: The sweetness from the aromas luckily isn't nearly as prevalent; a dry semi-sweet chocolate flavor is present up front with noticeable vanilla flavors on the back end; some roasted malt flavors; a touch of pepper and dark fruits--raisins especially (there is a slight port-like quality here that I like); sweetness does get a bit cloying in the end, however

F: A touch thin on back end but fairly creamy still

O: An interesting beer that I was glad to try--the chocolate definitely makes this beer but I wish the peppers were more dominant

04-12-2012 20:45:47 | More by dbossman
Photo of polishkaz


3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

04-12-2012 02:04:59 | More by polishkaz
Photo of JerzDevl2000

New Jersey

3.58/5  rDev -6%

Picked this up on sale at Gary's in Wayne a week or two ago, intrigued by what was on the bottle. After having this last night, I can honestly say that I've never had anything like this, but at the same time, there was just a bit too much going on here to make this fully enjoyable. I'd have this again if offered this beer but I'd need some crackers and water to help wash the chili pepper taste down!

This poured dark with a pretty frothy head that lasted for quite a while. That was the best aspect of this beer as it was a bit thinner than I envisioned. Not a large aroma up front but the vanilla could be felt along with a roasted cocoa flavor that was stronger in the mouthfeel. This beer was quite creamy and almost reminded me of an Irish Dry Stout, because of how light it was. The spice wasn't that prevalent but there was a chili backbone to this that the chocolate faded into, although it was a bit awkward to have a beer finish on such a warm and mouth-watering kick.

The alcohol was spot-on for this beer and could only be felt when it came to the warming aspects in the aftertaste. I applaud the effort on the part of Shmaltz and Terrapin to push the boundaries with this but there's just a bit too much going on here. A few of the chili recipes that I have here call for cocoa powder but because the sweetness of vanilla is in this beer, it makes the transition to the aftertaste a bit awkward. A beer that starts sweet and ends spicy and mouth-watering is not the best transition for me, but as a one-time deal, this works and it is different from the norm. Maybe the opposite would have worked better but on its own, this is worth a try once since it's unlike anything else currently available.

04-11-2012 19:16:43 | More by JerzDevl2000
Reunion: A Beer For Hope 2011 from Shmaltz Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 193 ratings.