By Julia Burke, Beer Editor

PB100103 When I asked the beer goddesses at The Old Toad pub in Rochester what to pair with my gorgeous blue cheese, bacon and onion-ring-topped burger, they didn't hesitate. "Blackheart Stout!" I was all kinds of up for a nice stout with this delicious meal.

Midnight-oil black to befit its name, this Middle Ages Brewing Company offering pours a half-finger toasted-coconut-colored head into a lipped pint glass.

The nose is milky hot cocoa, marzipan, roasted almonds and coconut rind. Malt is king, in other words — no hops to speak of on the nose and only the faintest whisper on the palate, stepping aside for an incredibly smooth and creamy mouthfeel and snuggly — if rather short — finish.

This tastes like the beverage they might give children in lieu of cafeteria milk in an elementary school for European brewers' children, and it went down a little too quick and easy with a smoky, hearty meal.

Try it with breakfast fare.

Producer: Middle Ages Brewing Co.
ABV: 6.6%
Sample Size: 16 oz. pint
Stemware: Lipped pint glass
Price: $6
Rating: B+