Perry’s Ice Cream and the Buffalo Sabres have teamed up on a new ice cream flavor, Let’s Dough Buffalo, because, let’s face it, what’s more Buffalo than hockey and ice cream (and beer too, but more on that later)? The new flavor feature cookie dough ice cream with crushed cookie swirls and cookie dough pieces.
Hungry yet? Just wait. Chances are by the end of this article you’ll be a little thirsty too.
After a few heaping spoonful’s straight out of the carton, we immediately began thinking of what beer would pair best with Let’s Dough Buffalo. Yes, we have issues and we are addressing them. Smooth cookie dough ice cream, crunchy cookie swirls and creamy cookie dough bites, what beer would work in sync with these flavors? So we thought, what better person to consult than New York Beer Project Head Brewer Jason Crossett, the man at the helm of the brewery’s successful partnership with Perry’s that has churned (ice cream pun!) out such ice cream-inspired beers as Pumpkin Pie Porter, Caribbean Coconut Pale Ale and Panda Paws Porter.
“Pairing this ice cream with beer could be quite amazing,” Crossett says. “Many beer styles can work quite well as long as beer isn’t overly sweet to the point where it’s sweeter than the ice cream. An Imperial or Sweet Stout would pair with Let’s Dough Buffalo nicely. Brooklyn’s Black Chocolate Stout or Left Hand’s Milk Stout would both work well. Both have a complex malt profile with notes of caramel and chocolate with a pleasant complimentary roast character and neither are overly sweet. In a different direction I could see Community Beer Works’ The Whale being a great pairing. It’s not as sweet as the prior two beers, but offers a more biscuity, bready and caramel flavor with moderate chocolate tones plus a light hop character to add complexity to the overall pairing. For me it’s all about finding similar flavors in both without either one over-powering the other. Contrasting flavors are nice too to add complexity and to further enhance the overall pairing as long as it’s not completely in the opposite direction.”
Speaking of The Whale, the best beer/ice cream pairing we ever had was a beer float with the Whale during a Community Beer Works dinner at the Roycroft Inn. We thought that bared mentioning. Having already eaten an entire carton of Let’s Dough Buffalo (like we said, we have issues and are working on them), pairing a rich, boozy and creamy Imperial Stout sounds like a perfect match (we have some Resurgence Brewing Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Sponge Candy Stout in the cellar), but what about turning this flavor set and these ingredients into a beer itself? Crossett, who turned Perry’s Panda Paws and Pumpkin Pie ice creams into two different porters and the Caribbean Coconut into a pale ale, thinks many beer styles could work.
“I feel you could take this ice cream flavor as a beer in several directions depending on what you want to accomplish; whether it’s to be similar in flavors or slightly contrasting to compliment the flavors of the ice cream. Many beer styles could work (i.e. blonde ale with lactose, cacao nibs, and vanilla, Munich Dunkel, Sweet Stout, American Brown Ale, or even an Imperial Stout). Personally, I would brew a Munich Dunkel with the addition of brown sugar. It’s a malt focused beer with a rich character of bread, biscuit, caramel and chocolate combined with a medium-full body pairs well with the flavors of the ice cream. Its medium-dry finish allows for some residual sweetness, but maintaining its drinkability. Furthermore, I would finish the beer off by aging it on vanilla beans during the lagering process to give the beer that moderately rich vanilla character. Now we have cookie dough in a liquid form!”
While he says brewing beer inspired by ice cream flavors is both challenging and ultimately rewarding, Crossett’s relationship with Perry’s extends further than just what goes into your glass. He admits it’s the donations they have been able to make to the Buffalo Women’s and Children’s Hospital that has been the best part.
“Brewing beers based on ice cream flavors is a fun experience and can be quite challenging depending on the ice cream you’re trying to replicate. For me, I like the challenging part of finding a style that works and then trying to execute it. There’s so many ice cream flavors out there, which allows for endless creativity! We’ve certainly had some unique offerings this past summer with our Panda Paws Porter and Caribbean Coconut Pale Ale. Both beers are unique with regards to their flavor profile and I thought came out well. I’m also very happy to be a part of our collaboration with Perry’s Ice Cream. They’re a great company and the contributions we’ve raised from the sales of these beers to the Buffalo Women’s and Children’s Hospital is truly special.”
A portion of proceeds from each and every sale of Let’s Dough Buffalo will go towards the Buffalo Sabres Foundation and the Resource Council of WNY’s Cook n’ Share Program, a pilot program that teaches elementary through middle school aged children how to prepare low-cost nutritious meals at home.
So whether you want to enjoy some ice cream in a bowl, on a cone or want to pair it with your favorite beer, Let’s Dough Buffalo is a great ice cream to do so with. It can be found at the KeyBank Center, all Tops, Wegmans, and 7-11 locations, Dash’s Markets and Perry’s scoop shops throughout Western New York. For more information, please visit www.perrysicecream.com.
Brian Campbell is a co-founder/Brand Manager of the BNBA’s enthusiast arm, Buffalo Beer League, and writes the weekly Buffalo Beer Buzz column. If you have beer news that should be included in the Beer Buzz, Brian can be reached at email@example.com, on Twitter at @buffbeerleague, on Instagram at @buffalobeerleague and on Facebook at @thebuffalobeerleague.