Full Tilt Brewing to release Berger Cookie Chocolate Stout

Baltimore's Full Tilt Brewing has true local flavor in its latest craft beer.

On Nov. 15, Full Tilt will debut its Berger Cookie Chocolate Stout at Admiral's Cup in Fells Point, according to co-owner Nick Fertig. The stout is a collaboration with DeBaufre Bakeries, the Baltimore company responsible for Berger Cookies since 1969.

Fertig called working with one of the city's most beloved products and companies "humbling," especially since Full Tilt has only been operating since the end of last December.

"We couldn't believe it hadn't been done yet," he said of incorporating Berger Cookies with beer.

When asked the most gratifying aspect of the collaboration, Fertig replied, "Just being able to tie into something that's so iconic Baltimore."

The first pint of Berger Cookie Chocolate Stout will be served at 7 p.m. Pints will be $5 all night. Also, a cask, unfiltered version of the beer will be served at room temperature and with bourbon-soaked oak chips added.

As of now, Full Tilt considers Berger Cookie Chocolate Stout a limited-edition seasonal beer, but the company is open to brewing it year-round if demand warrants it.

Fertig says many bars and liquor stores have reached out to Full Tilt, eager to serve the Baltimore beer. He says it will be available in bars and stores the week of Nov. 18. Fertig could not confirm all of the locations where the stout will be sold, but said Cranbrook Liquors and Shawan Liquors in Cockeysville will sell it, as will Perry Hall's Swan Song Spirits.

Fertig says he and his cousin Dan Baumiller, Full Tilt's other owner, began working on the recipe five months ago in Baumiller's garage. (The duo brews five-gallon batches at home and then takes the finished recipe to the brewery.) The first batches tasted like a nice chocolate stout, he says, but they lacked enough Berger Cookie flavor. Fertig and Baumiller frequently tinkered with the recipe until settling on the final version, which he describes as "a balancing act" between beer and Berger.

For Fertig, he did not want to coast on the Berger name alone. He says he knew if Baltimoreans didn't recognize the Berger flavor from first sip, there'd be backlash.

"In craft beer in general, when [customers] see a title, they want it to follow through with what it says," Fertig said. "We want it to be a complete experience."

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