Arguably one of the most popular beers in the Phoenix Brewing Company portfolio is the Krampus Kandy White Stout. First-time imbibers are surprised to see that Krampus is not a dark beer, but rather a clear golden ale. So where do the stout notes come from? Coffee beans.
The Mansfield, Ohio brewery first brewed the Krampus Kandy in 2016 as a small holiday batch infused with mint, chocolate, and a medium roast coffee. When the beer ran out, people began asking if it would make an appearance again for the Phoenix’s annual Christmas in July event. The brewers gave it a seasonally appropriate makeover to avoid having a peppermint beer linger through the summer. The altered recipe used Highlander Grog coffee because of its caramel and butterscotch notes.
“It was just this small change that was supposed to make it more approachable during summer. It quickly became one of our most inquired-about and requested beers. We were still viewing it as a seasonal when everyone else was jockeying for a flagship spot for the Krampus.” Said creative and marketing chair, Carmone Macfarlane.
“We had been tossing the idea around to offer a revival of the original mint and chocolate for a while, so after Scott (Cardwell), our head of Sales, was approached by a Columbus restaurant about offering Krampus Kandy on Nitro, it sparked a bigger conversation about a variety pack,” noted Head Brewer Duncan Macfarlane. “We could package a Krampus as a Nitro version. Why not offer a couple of variants at once.”
They just had to figure out the logistics of brewing 4 separate batches of the same beer, creating labels, and packaging them all. The Krampus Kandy Variety pack contains four Krampus Kandy cans.
The first two are Krampus Kandy which consumers already love, infused with Highlander Grog Coffee, and that same recipe tweaked by packaging using Nitrogen. “We ran a few test cans last year on Nitro and liked the QC results. We were just waiting for the right beer and the right time.” Said Duncan.
The last two beers in the variety pack are a Crème de Menthe and a Snickerdoodle Krampus Kandy.
The Crème de Menthe is reminiscent of that very first batch but is smoother. The chocolate and mint are well-balanced with just a kiss of coffee. The Snickerdoodle Krampus has layers of cinnamon, a hint of vanilla and hazelnut, amid its light coffee notes.
The variety pack and individual four packs of each will be released at Noon on February 10, 2024. The beers will be available exclusively at the Phoenix through the end of February, and the variety pack will only be offered at the Phoenix.
The Phoenix Brewing Company is located at 131 N. Diamond Street, Mansfield, Ohio.