Coconut Beer Tasting


Whenever we can, we look for obscure beers in the market. We have family ties in Hawaii and found two amazing beers created in Hawaii with a healthy dose of coconut flavors. Coconut has a light and almost fruity vanilla flavor and works well with many beer styles, but it is tough to bring through the flavor.

Kona Brewing Company and Maui Brewing Company make the two coconut beers we tried, the Koko Brown (Kona) and the Coconut Porter (Maui). It’s important to note these beers are very different as one is a brown ale and one is a porter. Our goal of this test is to see which beer handles the coconut flavor best. Kona’s Koko Brown is primarily brewed in Hawaii, but as part of the Craft Brewers Alliance Inc the beer is also brewed in Oregon, Washington and New Hampshire. Maui’s Coconut Porter is brewed on premises in Hawaii and in no other areas. This is important for some and not others as some brewers are against brewing outside of the primary location (Or different states). Both beers are 6% ABV, taste fantastic and go with any cold weather dishes, dark meats and aged cheeses.

Appearance: K.B. (Koko Brown) was a clear red amber with a light white head. C.P. (Coconut Porter) was black (Nearly opaque) with a hint of brown and a dark cocoa head.

Aroma: K.B. had a nutty malt and vanilla nose with hints of milk chocolate, coconut and a bit of hops. C.P. had a coffee bean and toasted coconut nose and dark chocolate and hints of brown sugar. Both were simple yet complex in aroma with refined flavors.

Taste: This is where they go different ways. The K.B. has a brown ale flavor with a dash of vanilla and coconut which is there, but subtle. The flavor is added on, like a topping rather than an infusion. The C.P. coconut flavor enhances the coffee, chocolate and vanilla flavors rather than looking for a way to standout.

Overall: The C.P. wins easily as the aroma and flavors are more defined and display the coconut flavor the best. The C.P. has a bit more body and flavor and we get a healthy kick of coconut. This beer also won the Gold Award at the World Beer Cup. This is not to say we won’t drink the K.B., on the contrary we’ll be drinking it all winter. Grab these beers!

Source: Kona Brewing Company, Maui Brewing Company

Image Credits: Bruce Leong/Dapper Guide