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Right on the nose

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At your next beer tasting, hold off on sipping and sniff instead: Novices and pros alike can refine their tasting vocab by smelling beers alongside their corresponding scents.



Maui hand-toasts the coconut in its CoCoNut Porter; toast a bit of shredded coconut in a warm pan to get an identical smell.


21st Amendment loads its seasonal Fireside Chat with a spice rack full of ingredients, but the dose of Madagascar cloves is easy to spot among the allspice, orange peel, white peppercorn and the rest.


Smooth, sweet vanilla creeps through Breckenridge’s Vanilla Porter; smelling real beans makes their scent stand out against the beer’s natural nut and chocolate notes.


Life and Limb, a Dogfish Head/Sierra Nevada collaboration, is brewed with birch syrup, too, but its maple syrup weaves through wafts of booze to shine in the aroma.


The best-selling Young’s Double Chocolate Stout oozes sinful sweetness. Smell a rich milk chocolate; bitter dark chocolates won’t connect with this brew.

Advanced pairing: Test newly nuanced noses with Ommegang Adoration. Its multifaceted smell begins with zesty coriander, orange peel and grains of paradise, but dig deeper to find darker cardamom and mace.



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