Coffee-Flavored Beers

A.M. meets P.M. in these coffee-flavored beers

As we enter a golden age of Grade A coffee and beer (and peak iced-coffee season), it's a no-brainer that brewers are combining these morning and evening vices into a delicious hybrid.

But coffee-flavored beer is hardly a hyper-caffeinated replacement for Sparks. Midnight-hued stouts and porters naturally possess chocolate and java notes. The addition of ground coffee beans–during brewing or cold-steeped afterward–amps up beer's existing coffee nuances while imparting just a kiss of caffeine.

Instead of reaching for Folgers, microbrewers accustomed to sourcing high-quality barley and hops are incorporating boutique-roasted and fair-trade beans. In California, Lagunitas employs local outfit Hardcore Espresso's potent java, and Minnesota's Surly Brewing adds Guatemalan beans roasted at area fave Coffee & Tea Limited into its killer Coffee Bender.

These marvelous mashups can range from oil-thick and triple-macchiato intense to as mild and smooth as a café au lait. Though many of these brews are regional, a number are also available at online purveyors like and–or you can nab a bottle at your favorite beer (or, perhaps, coffee) shop.

Cappuccino Stout California's craft-beer juggernaut Lagunitas turns to pedigreed roaster Hardcore Espresso to create a tan-headed indulgence with a chocolate nose and a gentle creaminess cut with hints of vanilla and brown sugar (

Coffee Bender Minnesota's genre-stretching Surly brewery makes its velvety, porter-brown ale by cold-steeping Guatemalan coffee, which produces a flavorful, minimally bitter treat (

Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout Japan's Kiuchi Brewery crafts a pitch-black beast capped by inches of leather-brown foam. This subtly smoky beer (pictured) tastes like liquefied chocolate-covered espresso beans–in the best way possible (

Jah-va Stout This high-alcohol (12 percent!) imperial stout from New York's Southern Tier brewery is black as coal, with rich cocoa notes that jive nicely with Blue Mountain coffee (

Kentucky Breakfast Stout Drinking Founders' rich and roasty stout (which comes from Michigan) topped with a cinnamon head is like having drunken coffee with a dollop of cream (