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Theobroma - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
TheobromaTheobroma

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

1,919 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,919
Reviews: 748
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 15.32%
Wants: 192
Gots: 222 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Chile Beer |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Theobroma is a celebration of chocolate, the food of the gods.

This Ancient Ale is based on chemical analysis of pottery fragments found in Honduras that revealed the earliest known alcoholic chocolate drink used by early civilizations to toast special occasions.

The discovery of this beverage pushed back the earliest use of cocoa for human consumption more than 500 years to 1,200 B.C. As per the analysis, Dogfish Head's Theobroma (translated into "food of the gods") is brewed with Aztec cocoa powder and cocoa nibs (from our friends at Askinosie Chocolate), honey, chilies and annatto (fragrant tree seeds).

It's light in color, not what you expect from your typical chocolate beer (not that you'd be surpised that we'd do something unexpected with this beer!).

8 IBU

(Beer added by: slvrmon82 on 03-21-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,919 | Reviews: 748 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by general_staal:
Photo of general_staal
general_staal

Ohio

4.44/5  rDev +15.3%

I poured from a bomber into a pint glass. The appearance was very nice. It is a bronzed orange color; which was very unexpected and it had a nice 1/2-3/4" head with nice lacing. I loved the smell. It had a very spicy smell. I could smell the chilies. The chilies were also very apparent on first taste. At first I wasn't sure I liked the chili flavor but the subtle chocolate on the back end made it very nice. The spiciness also added to the mouthfeel of the beer. The tight carbonation with the spice of the chilies gave it a very zingy feel on the tongue which was surprising. Overall I think this beer was a big surprise from the pour to the finish, but it was a surprise I enjoyed.

08-02-2013 00:59:13 | More by general_staal
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

3.2/5  rDev -16.9%

I have been wanting to try this beer for awhile,I picked it up today and well...I wish I hadnt spent the money I did for it.Poured a clear golden with no head what so ever,it looked flat.Aromas are fruity with a light shot of spice,not like ancho's though,more heat than expected.Very light chocolate on the palate with the alcohol showing thru,the chile comes thru in the aftertaste.Eh not what I thought it would be,the spicey burbs are the best thing about this beer in my mind.

08-22-2010 21:16:25 | More by oberon
Photo of Dekhar
Dekhar

Massachusetts

3.88/5  rDev +0.8%

08-30-2014 03:22:16 | More by Dekhar
Photo of jcr8611
jcr8611


4.25/5  rDev +10.4%

03-26-2012 21:52:41 | More by jcr8611
Photo of ArrogantDeadGuy
ArrogantDeadGuy

Virginia

4/5  rDev +3.9%

This is a sippin brew that hit me much harder than the 9% ABV advertised. The pour was rich thick and dark. The head was soapy in appearance but left quickly. The fragrance of malts and fruit abound along with the alcohol. The brew is very nice with fruit overtones and just a lining of chile. The mouthfeel is rich and decadent. I liked the brew a lot with bread and mild asiago. All in all I would suggest that this brew is most positivelly experienced with food but I could definately see my self sippin' on an eight ouncer solo.

08-12-2009 00:52:46 | More by ArrogantDeadGuy
Photo of SkiBum22
SkiBum22

New York

4/5  rDev +3.9%

10-19-2013 18:30:15 | More by SkiBum22
Photo of Topheropolis
Topheropolis

California

4.95/5  rDev +28.6%

I treated myself to this for New Years Eve. Unfortunately I didn't make it due to the 3- 750ml strong ales I started with. So it's my New Years Day Ale. It has a nice chocolatey, citrus nose with a perfect balance of cocoa, chilies, and honey on the pallet. Delicious!

01-01-2013 21:36:52 | More by Topheropolis
Photo of Firefox13
Firefox13


3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

02-06-2013 14:55:59 | More by Firefox13
Photo of BubalooBrewMaster
BubalooBrewMaster

Nevada

4/5  rDev +3.9%

12-17-2013 08:11:05 | More by BubalooBrewMaster
Photo of BeerAdvocate
BeerAdvocate

Massachusetts

4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue X:

Accordingly to Dogfish, Theobroma, or "food of the gods," is brewed with Aztec cocoa powder and cocoa nibs from Askinosie Chocolate, honey, ancho chilies and annatto. The recipe is based on chemical analysis of pottery fragments found in Honduras, which scientists claim is the earliest known alcoholic chocolate drink.

Rich golden in color, with a slight haze and a thin white lace. Fairly clean in the nose with faint notes of powdered cocoa, spicy pepper and fermented honey. Very smooth on the palate. Medium bodied. Creamy carbonation. Sweet up front, mead-like at times, with cereal grains as the base and plenty of residual honey complexities. Mild fruity esters. Notes of annatto play along well, lending to the sweetness a slight nutmeg and spicy flavor. Suggestions of vanilla. Chocolate flavors are subtly balanced in the mix, as are the chilies, which provide a mild, peppery, soft heat. The chilies become more present as things warm, presenting themselves stronger in the finish. Soft honey and spicy finish that eventually dries up nice and clean.

Personally, we would like to see a bit more heat from those chilies, but this is without a doubt one of the more interesting, tasty and experimental brews from Dogfish Head. The balance of flavors from so many distinct sources is pretty much perfect. Sam, please make more.

09-20-2010 17:38:47 | More by BeerAdvocate
Photo of orbitalr0x
orbitalr0x

Illinois

3.88/5  rDev +0.8%

750ml bottle. Bottled in 2008.

Pours into my glass a deep reddish orange with a lot of little particulate matter floating around. A small white ring of bubbles sits around the top of the glass. Aromas of crisp semi-sweet malts mixing in with earthy cocoa. Peppery spiciness is there with a bit of a toasty backbone. Hints of bready yeast as well. Interesting spicy chocolate.

First sip brings crisp sweet malts upfront with honey and a big flow of cocoa flavors that have an earthy quality about them. Spiciness and mild peppery heat are integrated in well. Bready yeast tones on the finish along with a lingering mix of spicy cocoa that's left in the aftertaste. Pretty tasty.

Mouthfeel is actually on the lighter side with big prickly carbonation on the way down making it aerate on your palate. None of the flavors are overpowering and it was interesting to drink, although not something I see myself regularly purchasing.

09-13-2009 23:00:22 | More by orbitalr0x
Photo of ddodger41
ddodger41

Indiana

4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

02-26-2014 18:32:36 | More by ddodger41
Photo of danthehopslamman
danthehopslamman

Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

08-17-2013 17:58:39 | More by danthehopslamman
Photo of lordofthewiens
lordofthewiens

Maine

3.9/5  rDev +1.3%

This was quite unlike any beer I've ever had, and I still feel ambivalent about it. The beer was an orange color with a small white head. It had a faint cocoa and spice aroma. A cocoa taste with a peppery background. The pepper lingered for a long while, but was not unpleasant. I'd like to try this again.

10-22-2008 02:00:48 | More by lordofthewiens
Photo of gregmoscetti
gregmoscetti

California

4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

This is my first review with BA and I picked a good one.

I had my mom back in NJ pick this up when it was released and it has been on the east coast until now.

Served in a goblet

The first smell of this beer was strange. I have never smelled a beer quite like this one and probably wont again. I was also surprised that it was not a thicker beer. Upon the first sip, I found this beer perplexing in the best way. The chile, the chocolate, they came together nicely. My only complaint in the taste category is the aftertaste, which feels like the chile. It is a bit of a lurker.

Drinkability received high marks. I don't know if its because i am surprised by its low gravity but the drinkability far exceeded expectations.

All and all, I am very impressed by Dogfish on this one. An odd beer done very very well.

03-17-2009 02:22:01 | More by gregmoscetti
Photo of csmartin6
csmartin6

New York

4.25/5  rDev +10.4%

07-21-2012 18:24:33 | More by csmartin6
Photo of heddar33
heddar33

Pennsylvania

4.75/5  rDev +23.4%

09-09-2012 04:21:23 | More by heddar33
Photo of marvin213
marvin213

North Carolina

3.3/5  rDev -14.3%

A murky, dirty yellow liquid with a thin foam top greets me. On the light side, certainly, for a chocolatey concoction, but its categorization as a chile beer gives me less context. It looks mysterious like only a DFH could, but much lighter than I expected.

My preconceived notions involved honey-infused chocolate goodness, but what I smell here is more like a common keg beer. I detect maybe a hint of honey, but zero chocolate. There's neither hops nor malts billowing toward the nose, and I strain to get some chile qualities. There's something in there, but it's far from the forefront.

Taste is more impressive, and it's understandably "chile beer." There's a cocoa presence, but it's not quite chocolate--is there really a difference? A nutmeg flavor, which I presume is annato, pervades every sip. Coupled with the chiles, it provides a spicy pepper effect. Perhaps the honey serves just to balance all this because there's no honey sweetness. I acknowledge that maybe there shouldn't be, but then what are honey and cocoa doing in a chile beer? I realize it's a relic recipe, but it's confused. It's good ingredients meshed together but, at least in this case, the sum is less than the parts.

For a spicy chile beer with honey and cocoa, the mouthfeel is lacking. Again, it's confused, and I so want to like it, but what's going on here? It's a neat-o novelty, but a great go-to beverage it is not. It's like so many flavors compete for your taste buds that they fight each other to death.

So, for the intangible ambiguity that is the drinkability rating, I have to admit that it's one of the neatest beers I've ever encountered. All this neat stuff, replicating some ancient recipe--it's like a melodramatic beer. It's fun to share and to talk about, and the label is awesome. Though DFH obviously makes great beverages, they are as undeniably great marketers. For both reasons, I like having this beer around.

09-17-2009 20:41:18 | More by marvin213
Photo of Beaver13
Beaver13

Colorado

3.45/5  rDev -10.4%

750ml bottle. Pours a hazy golden orange with a smallish white head that quickly diminishes to a thin film that leaves some lacing.

The aroma is some sweet malts, and spices - spicy cinnamon and tea.

The flavor is sweet malts with a little fruit and honey leading to a spicy (hot) cinnamon finish (red hots). It is a bit plasticy in the aftertaste, but warming from the spices and alcohol. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with average carbonation.

Overall, one of the more interesting spicy/chile beers I've had. I really love the background on these Dogfish beers - it brings out the geek in me.

08-23-2009 05:34:27 | More by Beaver13
Photo of generallee
generallee

New York

4.03/5  rDev +4.7%

Presentation: It was poured from a 1 pint 9.4oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: The body has a dark golden honey color with a slightly hazy appearance and some fine sediment floating in it. Its head is light tan in color, average in size and slowly fades down to just a small ring of slick lace.

Smell: The aroma has hints of light sweet honey and malts.

Taste/Mouth feel: Its flavor has a pleasant honey and malty sweetness with just a mellow hint of chocolate. There is also a hint of chili flavor with is very mild and complementary. Its texture is smooth and slick on the palate with light carbonation and a solid well rounded medium body.

Notes: I was looking for a bigger, bolder chocolate flavor with spicy kick of chili. I was surprised to find a very subtle mellow brew that still a pleasure to drink.

04-30-2009 15:02:04 | More by generallee
Photo of SmellsofMahagony
SmellsofMahagony

Texas

4.25/5  rDev +10.4%

05-18-2013 13:08:52 | More by SmellsofMahagony
Photo of TimoP
TimoP

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +3.9%

08-10-2012 04:05:04 | More by TimoP
Photo of iemailjack
iemailjack

Florida

3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

01-08-2013 00:32:54 | More by iemailjack
Photo of psujorge
psujorge

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +3.9%

02-02-2012 04:20:30 | More by psujorge
Photo of merlin48
merlin48

Kentucky

3.78/5  rDev -1.8%

Bottle, as pictured here, pours a hazy amber body with a medium offwhite head that quickly settles to a cap. No real lacing.

Interesting aroma has a hint of cocoa, a note of floral honey, and an odd earthiness.

Mouthfeel is medium in body and carbonation with a distinct pepper burn.

Taste is intriguing and complex. The annato seems to provide the basic character, with an odd bitter woodsyness akin to aloe tea. Cocoa nibs aren't really noticed. A pepper hotness becomes the prevailing sensation as it warms. Wow! This is a strange brew, even for Dogfish Head. Finishes with a prolonged pepper burn.

Complex and interesting, nicely drinkable, but I doubt I'll look for it again.

09-06-2009 00:16:37 | More by merlin48
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Theobroma from Dogfish Head Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 1,919 ratings.