Autumn has officially arrived, and the season is persuading taprooms across the state to replace their refreshing, summer lagers with fall brews. Pumpkin flavored porters and Oktoberfest biers are fireside staples for seasonal beer drinkers. Determined to transcend these conventional fall-flavored beers, Starr Hill Brewery in Crozet introduced their Last Leaf Maple Brown Ale in to the mix.

Starr Hill Brewery describes their seasonal Last Leaf Maple Brown Ale as a rich and malty English Brown Ale hopped with East Kent Goldings and real Virginia maple syrup. Not only does Last Leaf taste like fall, but smells like it, too, with subtle aromatic notes of vanilla and maple. Starr Hill Brewery first released their Last Leaf Maple Brown Ale in 2016. The release was an instant hit and the maple syrup-infused ale is now back on shelves statewide for its second annual debut.

While Starr Hill brewmasters traditionally recommend pairing Last Leaf with aged Gouda cheese or a classic, Belgian beef and beer stew, their latest culinary pairing calls for the ale as an ingredient in their new boozy breakfast creation, Last Leaf Maple Chocolate Chip Pancakes. Follow the recipe below to make your own.

Starr Hill Maple Pancakes recipe beer pairing

Last Leaf Maple Chocolate Chip Pancakes

Recipe adapted from Starr Hill Brewery’s Last Leaf Maple Chocolate Chip Pancakes


Pancake Batter

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 egg, plus 1 additional yolk

1/3 cup brown sugar

2 tbsp. canola oil

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. vanilla

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 cup Last Leaf Maple Brown Ale

butter or cooking spray

chocolate chips for topping (optional)


3/4 cup Virginia maple syrup

1/2 cup Last Leaf Maple Brown Ale

Starr Hill Last Leaf Maple Brown Ale


Whisk together flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and baking powder.

In a separate bowl, combine egg, additional yolk, vanilla and oil.

Form a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Add egg mixture and 1/2 cup of beer to the well and whisk to combine. Add chocolate chips.

Heat a skillet and brush with melted butter, or spray with cooking spray.

Pour 1/4 cup of pancake batter onto hot griddle. Flip the pancake as soon as bubbles appear in the middle and edges adopt a dry appearance. Cook on the other side until cooked through.

Cook 3/4 cup of Virginia maple syrup and 1/2 cup of Last Leaf on the stove over high heat. Heat for about 10 minutes, or until syrup is thickened and reduced to a caramel-like texture.

Top pancakes with hot syrup and enjoy!

Not sure where to buy Last Leaf? Use Starr Hill Brewery’s Beer Finder to find a store near you.

Written By

Grace Silipigni