French Toast Stout

Breakfast themed beers are nothing new, and for good reason - breakfast is a magical thing. Not only is it the most important meal of the day, it's arguably the most delicious. As such, it's no wonder that brewers try to capture that essence in beer with flavors of coffee, maple, and even bacon. One notable and appropriately named offering from Founder's Brewing is their widely acclaimed "Breakfast Stout", a rich oatmeal stout brewed with coffee and chocolate. And while "breakfast" may be figurative when it comes to beer, I choose to take it literally. In fact, first thing in the morning is often my favorite time to enjoy a brew - on my days off, of course. After I kiss my wife on her way to work, I'll cue up my favorite fishing program on the DVR, sit back, and enjoy a tasty malted beverage to ease into the day.

My favorite breakfast meal as a kid was a hearty stack of French toast, fried perfectly golden brown and doused in maple syrup. It's one of the first meals my mother taught me to cook for myself, and one that I all too seldom indulge in these days. As such, it served as inspiration for my latest homebrew. I knew I wanted to start with a basic milk stout base for that underlying sweetness and build flavors upon that, adding vanilla and cinnamon to build the flavor profile. I chose to base the recipe off Brooklyn Brew Shop's "Eggnog Milk Stout", and made substitutions as necessary.

Overall I feel like it came out pretty decent, with solid stout character and flavor. My main criticism would be that the cinnamon and vanilla weren't as pronounced as I would have liked them to be. I was wary not to overdo it, especially in such a small batch, but it needed a little more "oomph" to really set it apart. An expected disappointment was the lack of any maple flavor. As maple syrup is almost completely fermentable, you lose nearly all of the flavor associated with it. And considering the minute amount that was used used for bottling, I never really expected for it to add anything anyway - but it was fun to use.

With Winter winding down, this breakfast brew will help me while away the mornings until fishing season kicks off in earnest; then it's out the door with a granola bar. You know what they say - the early bird gets the fish. Or something like that.


  1. Looking forward to the recipe to see what kind of substitutions and/or additions you made. I haven't used it before, but a maple extract added to the secondary might get some more of that flavor in there. Looks like a damn fine breakfast regardless!



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Brew Day is a brewers collective with a different obsession every month. Each month the homebrewers involved will tackle a different style of beer by brewing a batch and getting their malt-stained hands on as many pints of the same style as possible. Each brewer will bring their own warped concept to their batch helping to create as many variations as there are brewers involved.

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