Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine by selecting auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Short's Cup A Joe Coffee Creme Stout - Short's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Short's Cup A Joe Coffee Creme StoutShort's Cup A Joe Coffee Creme Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

294 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 294
Hads: 655
Avg: 4.03
pDev: 19.35%
Wants: 311
Gots: 96 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-26-2006

"A brew uniquely different from most coffee stouts, we cram Higher Grounds roasted fair trade espresso beans into every facet of the brewing process. Prominent aromatics of malt, espresso, and cocoa are abundant and create a flavor robust with big malt characters fused with cream and coffee. The perfect morning night capper." 
20 I.B.U.’s
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 294 | Hads: 655
Photo of Drk93TT
4.79/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Finally obtained a six pack from the local store here in SE MI After many phone calls and pestering. Actually came in and bought it about 30mins after it was unloaded off the truck... ( bottles were STILL COLD !! )

I can only dream of how epic this tastes on draft... guess we need to start planning a winter vacation to Bellaire in addition to the summer one !

A: Pours pitch black with a creamy- brown head. Leaves wet lacing throughout, and a tan sugar like brown ring around the glass as it drops down to the oh so sad zone of when its all gone and empty

S: Coffee forward smell (yes). Smells like my kitchen after we use the Delonghi Semi-automatic espresso maker (w/ lavazza espresso beans from italy) to whip up some vanilla-latte's.

T: 25% of the brew tastes like coffee/espresso roast. This is a great thing. There are many other similar "coffee-stouts" That ive tried that just blow your head off with java. Awesomely, this **Cup A Joe** does not do such a thing. 50% Milk sugar and cream balance nicely with the espresso flavor in a way no other Coffee stout can. and the other 25% id say goes to a a decadent/velvety roasted chocolate explosion that dances on the palate. OH YEAH! Not Kool-aid oh yeah.. but good brew OH YEAH!

M: Rich and creamy. Medium bodied with hints of coffee and sweet milk throughout. Taste doesnt stick around long and give you any sort of lasting coffee-breath. Very happy that the coffee doesnt dominate the mouthfeel. This is the holy grail of coffee stout mouthfeel to me..

O: A must try. If I find this on draft I just might sleep on the floor of the establishment thats serving it..? Maybe not. But it is excellent. And I feel like this beer could be sessioned.. maybe paired with a good book or something of that nature.

 1,771 characters

Photo of SerialTicker
4.44/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

$5.50 a pint at Boat Works in St. Clair Shores, Michigan.

I found a new Short's favorite.

Appearance: Pitch black. Little head on it that goes away pretty quickly. Nice lacing at the top, but not much at the end. Looks... well... stouty.

Smell: Ugh. Good Lord. So much coffee... fully loaded with it. Roast. Maybe notes of chocolate. The coffee dominates and permeates all around.

Taste/feel: Like the smell, but the feel puts it to another level -- perfectly silky and creamy and way too drinkable. The coffee is at the forefront, of course, with a bit of chocolate sweetness. A touch bitter, but well balanced as a whole. If you love coffee in your stouts, you'll fall in love with this as I have.

An utterly incredible beer worthy of a pick up. The rating is among Shorts' highest for a reason... I thought their Mystery Oatmeal Stout was awesome, but this is actually a little bit better. Don't bother putting socks on before trying this beer, because it'll knock them right off anyway.

Cheesy? Don't care. Just drink it, damn you.

 1,041 characters

Photo of kylelenk
3.67/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottled and enjoyed in both a snifter and a pint glass...Not at the same time.

A- Black with a little bit of settlement at the bottom of the bottle. Head is a white/tan bubbly beauty that dissipates quickly and leaves little cascading laces.

S- Rather smokey for the category.

T- Expected it to be more like a mocha shake and yet the pallet is filled with wooded char and burnt almonds. There is a very subtle taste of morning coffee that is just begging to be unleashed. Absent is the lactose that is supposed to make this sweeter (?).

M- Little disappointed with how viscous and rich it is compared to the rather subtle pallet.

O- Never really found Cup A Joe to be a balanced beer. For a milk stout, it isn't that sweet. For a coffee stout, it's rather bland. Every year I keep hoping they'll tweak it and nail it.

 826 characters

Photo of gcamparone
4.47/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter. Acquired in a trade as an extra, forgot from who though!

A- Pours a jet black, inky body with a decent sized mocha colored head that reduces slowly and leaves a little lacing.

S- Heavily roasted coffee, char, dark chocolate, cigarettes, somewhat earthy.

T- Sweet, bold mocha and vanilla upfront, dark chocolate, develops into a roasty, charred, black coffee flavor. Leaves a nice roasty flavor on the tongue. I even get some grass or earthyness mixed in.

M- Thick, rich, but very drinkable. Low carbonation.

I was blown away by how good this beer was. Hits all the high points of a coffee stout. The coffee isn't overpowering while maintaining a bold, charred character. Well done.

 732 characters

Photo of KickInTheChalice
4.26/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

On tap, served in a pint glass at Slow's.

My pour of Cup A Joe arrives without much visual fanfare. The beer itself is very thick dark brown color, and there is just a little wisp of a light brown head.

The coffee in the aroma hits my nose hard. The Higher Grounds espresso provides a pleasant, earthy espresso tone with underlying notes of cocoa and tobacco. Medium roasted malt, some dark chocolate, and sweet cream are also noticeable.

By no means is this a complex beer, but each sip is packed full of coffee, cream, and malt, as advertised. The coffee used to make this beer is of good quality and provides a smoothness I would like in my coffee in the morning. The cream adds a sweetness that cuts the bitterness from the coffee and accentuates the chocolate flavors more. The roasted malt provides a nice backbone for the whole experience without really getting in the way.

The creamy nature of the mouthfeel really puts this mouthfeel over the top. It is clear that the creme and the way this beer is made allow for such a luxurious and rich feel. The carbonation is smooth, and a residual sweetness stays on the lips after each sip.

Living in Michigan definitely has its perks. Being able to drink Short's on tap is definitely one of them. I would go so far as to say that this is one of the best 7% coffee stouts I have had. However, the bottle I had was absolutely putrid. It was not old but had clearly refermented into an undrinkable mess. Drinking Short's on tap is the only way to go.

 1,505 characters

Photo of cpetrone84
2/5  rDev -50.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pour is jet black with virtually no head. Nose is a bit artificial, artificial vanilla, overly sweet malt an sugar, and used coffee grounds. Taste is just as bad, overly sweet, under attenuated malt and coffee mess. Virtually no carb and extremely oily and slick feel.

 268 characters

Photo of russpowell
3.92/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Got this from Stormking47, cheers Joel!

Pours an effervescent mahogany with 2 fingers of mocha colored head. No lacing or head retention

S: Big time coffee & coffee grounds, fades as this warms

T: Dryness, much coffee & a bit of lactose up front. Nice mocha & cocoa flavors blend with straight up coffee & exrpesso as this warms. plus some more lactose sourness. Finishes dry with mocha & coffee grounds

MF: Smooth, some what creamy, medium bodied

A nice coffee stout, not upper rung, but right on the heels of them

 521 characters

Photo of ThePorterSorter
3.98/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours motor oil black with a razor thin tan head that dissipates. There is very little lacing or head retention. The nose emanates a potent, bitter coffee with a touch of sweetness. The beer drinks like a cup of coffee with a touch of milk, leaving a roasty, slightly bitter aftertaste. There is almost no distinctly hoppy bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium-full bodied, oily, sweet and roasty. It definitely a coffee cream stout with a great body and a sweet, effervescent finish. Worth trying and it definitely lives up to my expectations.

 551 characters

Photo of kawilliams81
4.1/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours from a 12 oz bottle into a Pipeworks snifter.

A- pours pitch black with a 2 finger brown head. Trails and blotches of lacing all over the glass.

S- huge coffee, espresso aromas! Lang with roast and some pine.

T- bitter coffee, espresso, bitter roasted malts.

M- medium body and carbonation. Very smooth with some creaminess.

O- very good coffee beer. Pretty straight forward coffee beer but damn good.

 412 characters

Photo of Scotchboy
4.21/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Awesome bottle from Adam (thanks man!) poured into my Snake River pint glass.

A: Black pour with a tiny dark brown head; some lacing.

S: Straight-up coffee. Coffee grounds, fresh coffee; potent, and kinda in-your-face. Dark, espresso coffee. Light notes of acrid char.

T: This is a different animal; much more diversity here. Bigger body than I expected as well, but we'll get to that...sweeter notes, sugary even; dark caramel, brown sugar, milky lactose, and even some mocha. Still plenty of coffee, but now blended beautifully with a gorgeous milk stout that has some heft.

MF: Not quite full but a creamy medium body...soft, velvety mouthfeel.

O: Impressed with the taste and feel on this one; coffee cream stout for sure! Lactose sugars come through brilliantly, cutting the acrid bitter coffee down to size and blending into a wonderful cold coffee concoction.

Fun one to try, would love to have it again. Thanks Adam!

 930 characters

Photo of Dope
4.06/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Pitch black pour with a huge fluffy dark brown head. Fades super slowly, great head retention with a big island of foam remaining. Solid wall of thick fluffy lacing left behind.

S: Fresh coffee grounds. Quite creamy and sweet. Touch of chocolate in there too.

T: A wonderful creamy chocolate and coffee mixture up front. Like a great mocha. Sweetness fades a bit and it becomes more of a bitter roasted coffee in the middle and back end. Touch more cream in the finish with a long lingering coffee ground between sips.

M: Creamy and full. Smooth. Nice.

O: Really nice brew. Coffee is QUITE heavy but is tasty and melds well with the cream stout characteristics. If it weren't so coffee dominant I'd give it even better ratings. Definitely a must-have for the coffee lover, especially if you take yours with cream.

 821 characters

Photo of davey101
4.18/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a DFH signature glass. I enjoyed 2011 vintage last year but never reviewed it. Thanks steimie!

A - Black body with a two finger mocha head. Foam sticks around for a long time. Excellent lacing and retention.

S - Plenty of coffee. Roasty, bitter and slightly sweet . That is about it actually.

T - Rich and roasty coffee beans and sweet milk sugar. Again, just coffee...but its so delicious. This might be my favorite "coffee beer" but its certainly not the best "coffee stout". Aftertaste is of bitter coffee beans.

M - Medium bodied and creamy. Carbonation is on the low side.

O - Shorts certainly has a skill for making beers which meet their descriptions. While this beer lacks the flavors and aromas that I would normally associate with a stout, this is spot on like a good cup of coffee with some cream. Phenomenal execution!

 854 characters

Photo of tectactoe
4.39/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Served on tap at my local Old Chicago. Pours dark, dark, dark as hell with a tan colored head made of very fine bubbles with fine definition. Creamy and bold looking at first glance. Insane coffee aroma comes from the beer, even before you bring your nose to the glass. Thick, creamy, and milky sweet coffee with a touch of bitterness, but mostly sweetness. Some cocoa notes are present in the background, along with burnt wood and toasted barley.

The taste hits first with an intense sweetness that takes on a cream & sugar filled Colombian coffee profile. Then comes the crescendo of a woody character, very "oaky" on the palate - however the coffee presence is still in full force pretty much all the way through. Bitterness and nuttiness are abound - the bitterness comes a touch from the coffee but there are some noticeable hop flavors that are certainly overshadowed but still somewhat necessary for their balancing effect. Deep espresso aftertaste leaving the mouth with a dark, slightly bitter, mostly sweet casting. Medium body, super rich and creamy feeling with a pretty low level of carbonation.

I've had this on bottle and tap. Certainly better on tap, but amazing either way. I'm a huge fan of stouts and I drink coffee like crazy, so naturally I have an affinity to coffee-stouts. This stout is better than most people give it credit for, so if you see it (and you like coffee), make sure you give it a shot.

 1,426 characters

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.55/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This isn't really doing it for me. Comes off a bit too bitter and somewhat tangy with a flavor ride that doesn't last that long. Or not long enough, imo. Body is nice. Still an okay beer, especially after it warms up a bit. Maybe I've had too many coffee beers until now and I have certain expectations.

 303 characters

Photo of liamt07
3.8/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Steve, 355ml into a tulip.

Pretty black, with some mild clarity at the edges. Tan head, and a ring retins. Nose has creamy, roasty coffee, cocoa powder, and a touch of pickle (good nose Steve!).
Taste has more roasty coffee, dark chocolate and a light sourness. Medium light body, but perhaps a tad on the watery side. A good creamy coffee beer, but there are some imperfections evident.

 406 characters

Photo of alexanf
4.29/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours an oil black with minimum head.

S: Traces of smoke, chocolate, coffee, and earth. There is an additional presence of what I'm identifying as tobacco.

T: Hints of smoke, tobacco, coffee, vanilla, syrup, and cream.

M: Thick, heavy, and fully bodied all the way through.

O: Short's is spot on with this offering. What a beer!

 335 characters

Photo of peensteen
3.85/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Steve

Deep brown and near black in colour, ring of tan head, little to no lace left behind. Smell is roasted with lots of coffee, a bit of chocolate, lightly lactic as well and a little metallic, light alcohol. Taste is creamy with lots of bitter chocolate and black coffee and coffee grinds, roasty and a bit lactic with some smoke in the finish as well. Medium-light carbonation, medium body, decent feel. Taste and feels much better than the way it smells at first, lots of coffee in here, not the best coffee beer I have had but still quite good.

 568 characters

Photo of Rutager
4.17/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance. Pours black with a thin, light brown head.

Smell. Acidic coffee and roasty, toasty dark malts. A little woody. Smells good.

Taste. Lots of dark, roasty coffee, some roasty malts, slightly acidic, just a little sweetness.

Mouthfeel. On the low side of medium bodied, low+ carbonation, really smooth.

Overall. Nice coffee stout. Drinks really easy and lots of nice coffee.

Thanks Namarsha82!

 406 characters

Photo of russwbeck
3.77/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Thick black pour with not more than a finger of brown head. Hardly any retention, there's hardly any head left just minutes after the pour.

S: Lots of sugars on the aroma. Cream and milk mix with a huge amount of coffee to make one sweet cup of Joe. This smells more like somebody dumped some milk stout in my coffee for a quick pick me up.

T: Like the aroma, the taste is very sweet, but absolutely focused on the coffee. Roasted malts, espresso, milk, and cream. Very nicely blended, this is a great take on coffee beer. The taste lasts forever, expect it to stick with you long after the final drops have gone.

MF: The body is too light, which actually makes it more like coffee. Thin and insanely dry (obviously).

O: This is pretty average overall. Really interesting, but just not really anything special.

 817 characters

Photo of DrDemento456
4.28/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The BEST beer they make! Hands down!

A - As expected it has a very dark black hue, dense deep black, with about a 1/2 inch of creamy mocha colored head. Pretty.

S - Smell is of course coffee with mild lactic sweetness and an almost vanilla like smell. Roast is nice as I breath deep.

T - Wow like W+B but less ABV! I am at a loss of how balanced the milk sugars, coffee, and roasted malts flavors are! Man do I like my milk stouts sweet and this one is borderline dessert!

M - Creamy, silky, smooth coffee and vanilla sweetness.

Overall I have had a lot of coffee stouts and also milk stouts but this one is one of the better ones. To those with low reviews it must have been a bottle not refrigerated and to those in Michigan I still can not believe you can just buy this off the shelf! Damn good stout!

 809 characters

Photo of amphion1065
3.51/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

16 oz. pour at Lord Hobo, served in a pint glass. Reviewed from notes.

Pours black. A tiny, dark tan head with minimal retention forms. I suppose it does indeed look like a cup of coffee.

Really deep, roasted coffee beans in the aroma. It's almost like walking into a coffee shop, the smell is that potent. A touch of chocolate, and a not insignificant element of burnt rubber creep in as well.

So many elements of the flavor are spot on. Coffee is here in abundance, as is a component of cream that adds a pleasant milky sweetness. But there's also a strange, vegetal, corn-like aftertaste that reminds me of a faded coffee stout. It certainly detracts from the overall package.

The carbonation is nice and low, though the mouthfeel could absolutely be thicker.

This is so close to being a superb coffee stout, though some slightly off-putting aspects of the flavor and aroma hold it back.

 896 characters

Photo of inlimbo77
3.92/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into Boulevard snifter. Special thanks to stickman1220 for this one. I have had it since Novemeber I think.

A: Pours a really dark brown almost black color. About a half finger of dark tan head. A few lacing bits on the swirl. Fairly thin on the pour.

S: I smell coffee and chocolate. Ground coffee, not overly strong, and a milk chocolate smoothness.

T: Smooth easy coffee bitterness on the tip of the tongue. It's really smooth in the middle of the sip as well. I get that mild ground coffee and milk chocolate and creaminess. The close has a little coffee forward, but not as bitter as expected. The flavor sticks with you a while.

M: Full bodied but pleasant due to the lactose.

O: B+ for me on this one. It's a solid coffee stout, but in that arena I don't think you are going to sway me from FBS or W&B.

 833 characters

Photo of CuriousMonk
3.2/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from 12oz bottle into snifter. Pours opaque and oily black with a thin tan head that recedes to a very thin collar of lace. The nose is very freshly roasted and earthy coffee along with some molasses and burnt brown sugar and light nuttiness. The flavor is more acidic than the nose would have suggested, but with all of the same roasted coffee, molasses, and nutty qualities. The body is medium with light carbonation and a very long roasted coffee finish.

 464 characters

Photo of SickGnar
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Super, super dark brown, just the barest bit short of black, and completely opaque with just hints of mahogany / garnet when held to light. It has a small, medium brown head of fine bubbles that settles quick to a skim and a ring that keeps well but leaves very minimal lacing.

S: Up front is a nice mix of coffee & stout. Roast is quite robust with burnt and acrid notes (but not offensive at all). Coffee is perhaps more of a beans or grounds smell than fresh coffee – but nice all the same. Towards the end the lactose sweetness comes on strong backed by a malty contribution of molasses and scorched toffee. A very rich and pleasant aroma with good strength.

T: Initial flavor is less robust than anticipated. It is more focused on sweet lactose, and the nutty & dark toffee backbone malts. As sweetness fades, the roast really shows strong. A big roasty stout character with bitter-sweet dark cocoa and almost charred malts. Coffee doesn’t really show through until the end, and is less pronounced than I had hoped from the nose. Still good though, and it does linger in the finish with a nice mix of roast notes and lactose sugar. Right before the lingering finish there is a quick acrid & slightly tart bite at the very back of the mouth.

M: A slight bit over medium body with soft carbonation. Fairly creamy and smooth. A big amount of sticky sugars and some dextrins for texture. At the end there is a brief flash of biting tartness. The finish finally ends a touch drying from all the roast – both malts and coffee.

D: Just a touch too much of a sweet, desert type beer to really grab the next higher score. But it is very close. Looks nice, smells great, tastes good, and it is a tad “more filling” – but oh well. A burly & robust & dark & sweet desert beer. Very nice.

 1,799 characters

Photo of ChugginOil
4.02/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Raymo55 for the thoughtful extra.

Pours a thick and blackened color that settles solid black with a tad bit of cola edging around the edges. There is less than a fingers worth of tan colored head that has decent retention.

The nose is pretty awesome here. Big time coffee roast aromas fill my nostrils. The dark coffee roast dominates for the most part but there is a bit of leather and cocoa in there too.

The taste is coffee dominant as well. Very robust, roasted flavors. The black coffee is fresh and very present here. There is some cocoa and and sweet sugar involved behind the blast of coffee.

The mouthfeel is a bit strange as it begins creamy and falls a bit thin. Low carbonation. The only downside to this brew.

Overall, this is a really coffee forward brew that has a great nose and taste but the mouthfeel could be a bit thicker for sure.

 871 characters

Short's Cup A Joe Coffee Creme Stout from Short's Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 294 ratings.