May 14, 2015

Old Ox Brewery Kristen’s Passion

Ashburn, Virginia’s Old Ox Brewery is just about to celebrate their first 356 days of existence this June, but it wasn’t until earlier this year that I finally had the opportunity to taste some of their product. The company may be best known for their legal woes with Red Bull, but that hasn’t stopped them from shipping their beers to local retailers.

Kristen’s Passion was the first to hit shelves and my chance to get acquainted with the brewery. At 6% ABV this porter is their take on the Mexican Hot Chocolate trend. The beer is brewed with cocoa nibs, cinnamon, vanilla bean, and red chilies – chipotle, if I am not mistaken. Not only is the beer a nice introduction to Old Ox, but it’s also pretty damned tasty.


Kristen’s Passion pours a near black in color with a tan cap of foam that fell to a full ring around the surface.

Old Ox Brewery Kristen's Passion photo


I love the chilies on the nose — they provide a nice smokiness to go along with cocoa, soft roast malt and hints of cinnamon.


The beer id surprisingly decadent for the style, smooth with a lightly earthy character. The chilies aren’t spicy, but do provide a bit of latent heat that sites as a soft tingle in the background. The cocoa presents itself nicely with a touch of vanilla as the cinnamon appears late in the swallow, lingering in the lasting finish.


I’m not sure you can make a better first impression than with a beer like Kristen’s Passion. I need to get to the brewery for a visit sooner rather than later, but now that the company’s products are on the shelves (and tasting as good as they do), the long drive might have to wait a bit longer. Kristen’s Passion may be hopping on a trend band wagon, but it doesn’t taste as gimmicky as a few of the others I’ve sampled. The chilies could perhaps provide a bit more heat — then again I like spicy foods. Other than that, I will be buying this one again.

Rating: 4/5

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