Caravan Coffee, Golden Valley Brewery release a different take on the coffee beer

For some people the idea of a coffee flavored beer sounds a little weird. But as Marcus Karaffa described it, it’s amazingly delicious.

The Der Kaffeeklatsch from Golden Valley Brewery is the brainchild of Karaffa, from Caravan Coffee, and Jesse Shue, Golden Valley brewer.

“I love both things coffee and beer,” Karaffa said. “I actually started working for (Caravan) almost year ago but have known (Caravan owner Peter Miller) for about five years. We talked a while ago, about three years ago, Pete mentioned it would be fun to have beer with Caravan coffee in it. Come February I started working for Caravan and I was like, `I’ve got to make this drink happen.’”by: GARY ALLEN - Two in one -- Golden Valley Brewery Brew Master Jesse Shue pours a pint of his latest creation, Der Kaffeeklatsch during its unveiling Dec. 5. The coffee-beer is a blend of a dunkel and Guatemala Antigua La Flor from Caravan Coffee in Newberg.

So he took the idea to Shue and planning began.

“We tossed around some ideas. I came up with the idea of doing a lager,” Shue said. “Lagers tend to be cleaner in flavor than an ale — you get less yeast flavor. So I thought that might be a nice palate for the beer to shine and really express itself.”

Once Shue selected the dunkel — a dark, German lager — Karaffa started experimenting with coffee blends. He ultimately settled on Guatemala Antigua La Flor as a cold brew, of which he would need 30 pounds.

“That’s a lot of coffee,” Karaffa said.

Shue ended up brewing the coffee on his end and blending the two beverages.

About six weeks later, the Der Kaffeeklatsch was ready for the Dec. 5 unveiling.

“We’re not going to bottle it; it will just be on tap at the two restaurants until they are all gone. We made seven barrels, about 14 kegs,” Shue said. “I’m very happy. The fact that the coffee is very subtle in flavor but comes through nicely in the aroma, so it’s kind of like a beer that smells like coffee.”

The blend has about 7 percent cold brew, which Karaffa said would equate to about a cup of coffee per pint.

“But it’s almost too easy to drink,” he said.

As for the future, the pair are already planning discussions for a future blend.

“I would definitely like to do some coffee beers in the future,” Shue said. “I really enjoy doing a somewhat unconventional beer. A lot of people just make porters or stouts with coffee and there’s so many other beers out there. I thought this was one more fun.”

The Der Kaffeeklatsch is available on tap at both McMinn­ville and Beaverton Golden Valley Brewery locations.

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