Armadillo Ale Works + Kitty Bunny Bakery Beer & Cupcake Pairing

Armadillo Ale Works + Kitty Bunny Bakery
@ Armadillo Brewery

Alright, y’all: it’s time for a serious discussion. The subject? The most important meal of the day, of course. Breakfast. Now, it’s an age-old question: just what is the breakfast of champions? Bacon and eggs? Pancakes and coffee? Well, local brewers Armadillo Ale Works and bakers Kitty Bunny Bakery teamed up this past Sunday to answer that question in an unexpected way: beer and cupcakes. Now, this pairing isn’t necessarily tethered to “breakfast” — as it happened, the event itself began at 1 in the afternoon — but the flavors that erupted from this dynamic duo are flavors we’re all familiar with: syrup-sweet pralines, roasty coffee, savory bacon, refreshing fruits. So let’s waste not another moment and dive right in to this delectable set of treats.

Brunch Money + Hunka Burnin’ Love

The Brunch Money is a local classic: a sweet, full bodied “golden stout”, rich with honey-sweet malts and a maple undertone. As the name suggests, it’s the perfect beer to kick off a Sunday brunch. The Hunka Burnin’ Love that came paired with this beer is made with a banana and peanut butter combination that’s the perfect sponge for the rich, bright vanilla and honey notes of the beer. The post-cupcake Brunch Money sip is a burst of bright banana, taking the syrupy notes of both and brightening up the palate with that fruity, almost hefeweizen-esque fruit flavor. The candied bacon atop the cupcake only serves to solidify this breakfast bonanza, bringing in the deftest touch of savory to a delightfully sweet treat.

Quakertown Stout + Pancakes + Bacon

In contrast to the bright & rich praline/pancake flavor of the Brunch Money, the Quakertown Stout is bold and toasty, like a robust morning coffee, with just a dash of cream to round it out.
The Pancakes + Bacon cupcake is exactly that: a truly faithful replica of the American diner's breakfast staple. A bite out of this is as airy and fluffy as your favorite cakey wake-up call, and the dark roasted malts of the beer add a grounding to the decadence of the cupcake. The acidity and bitterness of the stout counteracts and cuts through the thick, praline-esque cake, while the bacon, once again, is a delightful spike of umami that ties the whole affair together, completing the working man’s morning trinity of bacon, pancakes, and a damn fine cup of joe.

Honey Please + Cinammon Toast Crunch

This beer, Honey Please, begins to move in the direction of lighter fare, while still maintaining the sweetness endemic to the rest of these pairings. It brings with it a very subtle note of honey that gives brightness to the pale malts, but there's a lingering note of cinnamon sweetness that hides just beyond the horizon. With the Cinnamon Toast Crunch pairing, that cinnamon becomes the star of the show, and the Texas honey plus the brown sugar create a creamy, horchata-like flavor that can only invoke reminiscence of early school-morning breakfasts — or lazy Saturdays with bowls of cereal — and, more specifically, the most delectable part of every bowl of saccharine goodness: the cereal-infused milk to drink at the end. It made children feel like kings, feasting on delicacies of unaffordable opulence, governed by no matri-or-patriarchal dictation of sugar rations. No, you downed that milk like the eminent ruler of your domain — and this regal pairing captures just such bliss.

Tropical Sour + Mango

We've had the pancakes, the bacon, the coffee, the cereal. What's missing? For our classic American breakfast, it would be the fruit; in many cases, the glass of OJ. Well, let’s put that basic store-bought pulpy mess aside; the Tropical Sour is positively continental in its triumph over your typical orange juice. It's got the taste of several tropical fruits working for it, and this really shines through in a layered flavor that's at once tart, sweet, fruity, and a little bitter. The Mango cupcake immediately evokes the punchy flavor of a Starburst: a literal pop of concentrated citrus fruit flavor, with a palpable and saccharine juiciness that really hammers home the bright acidity of a glass of orange juice. This is either the potent revitalizing zing to begin your morning, or the final, lingering punch that one needs to round out the mellow, earthy tones of a sugary-sweet wake up. This final pairing is as rich and flavorful as a custard-filled donut, with a lot of the same textures and mouthfeel at play in the juicy cupcake and beer pairing.

And with that, we say goodbye to our Sunday brunch, for now. We move on with the rest of our day, our week, awaiting that next glorious moment when we can feast on that special, unfettered day again — but until then, we will delight in the simple elegance of our morning coffee, our hastily made ‘cakes, our savory bacon saviors, and even, as mundane as it is, our little glass of OJ.

Header design by Clarissa Baniecki