Tag Archives: Stout

2017 Advent Calendar – Day 6 – Belching Beaver – Milk Stout Nitro

Photo: http://www.belchingbeaver.com/beers

I can’t believe how quickly we are approaching the end of this calendar. I know that we are just about half-way through at this point, but it seems like it’s going so fast. I’m sure part of it could be that I’ve missed a few days. Whatever the case might be, we are motoring through these beers and to catch-up here is the first of two posts today.

Day 6’s beer is Belching Beaver’s Milk Stout on Nitro.

Belching Beaver is a San Diego based brewery that has 5 locations in San Diego, Oceanside and Vista California. While I can’t find many details on the brewery in respect to date of opening, I do know that it is owned and operated by Tom Vogel who, for years, had wanted to open a bar or a pizza place but could never find the right location to buy. After years of making offers and exploring this route, he decided to just open a brewery and make a place for himself.

Luckily for Tom, he played poker with a brewer from Cornado Brewing named Troy Smith. He asked Troy if he wanted to do his own thing and join him in his startup brewery. Troy agreed and they began moving forward scouting locations and coming up with a design. They partnerd with Dave Mobley, an accomplished architect, and opened their first brewery in San Diego, CA.

They’ve now expanded to 5 locations and boast a 15-barrel system at their headquarters plus a 10-barrel system at their brewpub location and an annual production of 60,000 barrels at its Oceanside base of operations. They make a variety of interesting beers including a PB&J stout and a Peanut Butter Latte stout.

As I’ve said many times on this blog, stouts are one of my favorite styles of beer. Stouts are a dark beer made using roasted malts (or roasted barley), hops, water and yeast. Traditionally the term stout was used to describe the strongest (most alcoholic) porters, typically around 7-8%, produced by a brewery. The name ‘stout’ referred to the often-stouter bottles these brews were sold in, which eventually became the term used to describe the style of beer.

There are numerous sub-styles of stouts ranging from Dry Stouts, to Porters, and Oyster stouts and my favorite, Imperial Stouts. While they had lost popularity after the First World War, they’ve started to have a bit of an upswing due to the growing popularity in craft beer and breweries. Stouts are very versatile, allowing for a lot of creativity in adjuncts and flavouring. You can see many craft breweries playing with stouts regularly. Higher alcohol stouts also often age well, making them a wonderful cellaring beer.

This stout is known as a “sweet stout,” which are much sweeter and less bitter than most other stouts. This is a traditionally English style of stout developed in the early 1900s as a tonic for invalids and nursing mothers. Originally called Milk or Cream stouts, this designation is no longer permitted in England (even if it is everywhere else) and the name derives from the use of lactose, or milk sugar, as a sweetener in the beer. Lactose is not a fermentable sugar and remains after fermentation is complete, which gives this beer its sweet and creamy nature. Onto the beer.

Appearance – Opaque black with a nice tan head that leaves little lacing.
Smell – Roasted malt, caramel, subtle cocoa notes, vanilla, and roasted coffee beans.
Taste – Nice silky sweetness from the lactose, notes of coffee and some caramel or brown sugar, chocolate notes, like a bitter or dark chocolate, and a very subtle earthy hop character.
Mouth Feel – Silky mouth feel that is accentuated using Nitro. There is very little carbonation. Medium bodied.
Overall Thoughts
– A bit of a lighter bodied stout than others I’ve had of this style. The sweetness builds as you drink this beer but is overall not overpowering. The use of nitro draws out that lactose character and makes this beer feel light and airy.
Do I like it? – I do like this beer. I’m a big fan of stouts and I really like trying a good milk stout. I’d be happy to have this one again.

 

2017 Advent Calendar – Day 3 – Saugatuck – Cocanuck Stout

I hope that people are enjoying reading these write-ups of the craft beer advent calendar. I know that there are certainly some beers in this calendar that are going to be beyond their prime. They put styles in here that really shouldn’t sit for the ~5 months they sit, and it really doesn’t do the beers or the breweries justice. Even so, I find that the beers I get to try are unique and make it worthwhile for me. I know, very well, that many of the beers I’m trying are beyond their prime, but, there will be some gems, and for me, I enjoy that.

Today’s beer comes to coming to us from Saugatuck Brewing Company in Douglas, Michigan.  Douglas is a city that is after our own hearts.  It’s been the “City of friendliness” since 1870. Well, Friendly Manitoba says hello Douglas. The beer we have from them today is a Cocanuck (punny) stout. This same brewery did send a 12 pack of different stouts here to Manitoba and one of them was a coconut stout called “Beam me up stouty”. I’m not sure if this one will differ from that, but I do enjoy the addition of coconut (something I typically hate) to a stout.

Developed as a three-phase brewery plan by founder and original brew master Barry Johnson, Saugatuck Brewing Company first opened its doors in 2005.  In its infancy it consisted of a 3.5 barrel “brew on premise” system in a leased industrial space.  3.5 barrels is about 300 litres of beer, not very much when you are providing interesting and tasty craft beers.  So, in 2008 they moved to a 25,000 sq/ft facility that was fully remodeled to include an Irish style pub providing not only tasty beers but also tasty snacks.  They continued to use the “Brew on premise” system allowing for patrons to come in and brew their own beers to be taken away in bomber bottles after fermentation and carbonation were complete.

Around this same time a 10-barrel system was installed in the brew house and production began en masse of and start planning for regional distribution of their beers. Starting with a meager 70 barrels of fermentation space and only a single 650ml bottle filler, their first year consisted on only 250 barrels.  In 2010 they purchased Meheen 6 head bottle filler and in-line labeler enabling them to produce 4 mainstay styles of beer to be sold in six-packs. This allowed them to distribute not only to the lower part of Michigan but also into Chicago and they managed to reach 2000 barrels of production in 2012.

Today, Saugatuck Brewing boasts a large 45-barrel system paired with 960 barrels of fermentation space.  With newly installed bottling system and a fleet of over 6,000 kegs they are able to produce on average 13,000 barrels per year with a large scale distribution.  They produce a number of mainstay beers as well as seasonal and specialty beers. Led by President Ric Gillette and head brewer Steve Scheerhorn the team at Saugatuck focus on producing a variety of different beers for their taproom and restaurant and for distribution.

s I’ve said many times on this blog, stouts are one of my favorite styles of beer. Stouts are a dark beer made using roasted malts (or roasted barley), hops, water and yeast. Traditionally the term stout was used to describe the strongest (most alcoholic) porters, typically around 7-8%, produced by a brewery. The name ‘stout’ referred to the often stouter bottles these brews were sold in, which eventually became the term used to describe the style of beer.

There are numerous sub-styles of stouts ranging from Dry Stouts, to Porters, and Oyster stouts and my favorite, Imperial Stouts. While they had lost popularity after the First World War, they’ve started to have a bit of an upswing due to the growing popularity in craft beer and breweries. Stouts are very versatile, allowing for a lot of creativity in adjuncts and flavouring. You can see a number of craft breweries playing with stouts regularly. Higher alcohol stouts also often age well, making them a wonderful cellaring beer.

This particular stout is an American Stout that has been flavoured with coconut. American stouts tend to be more hop forward then your traditional stout (think Diesel Fitter). They have a dry slightly bitter finish but are very subtle on the hop aroma and flavour. While this beer is an American stout, the fact that it is flavoured with coconut means that there will likely be some sweetness. Let’s get to the beer.

Appearance – Pours black with a finger width of a tan head.
Smell – Bursting with toasted coconut notes and sweet chocolate.
Taste – Sweet malt-forward front with a strong coconut flavor that finishes surpassingly dry given the sweetness on the front. Alcohol warming is present, but it goes down smooth.
Mouth feel – Full bodied, sweet front and middle with a dry finish.
Overall – This beer plays a lot more like a Sweet Stout then it does anything else. It has a character to it that gives the impression of unfermented residual sugars from lactose, but they aren’t listed as an ingredient. I must guess that the coconut flavor comes from a syrup of some kind that adds that sweetness and body.
Do I like it?
– I did enjoy it. While I found it to be quite sweet, I also liked the interplay of coconut with malt sweetness and that slightly bitter dry finish. I think this is a pretty strong third day entry, but it’s not going to be winning my top pick.

 

Day 9 – Fabryka Piwa – Deep Space

So, sleep deprivation is a real thing. I’m sure those of you who have had children know that. I’m starting to experience it first hand and I certainly do not enjoy it. That said, I do enjoy beer, and glad that’s an exciting thing making this sleep deprived time a little more fun.

Yesterday’s beer was not that enjoyable, but with today’s I hope we turn that around. Today we have a beer from Fabryka Piwa in Poland called Deep Space.

Fabryka Piwa was founded by Wojciech Warzyszyński and Marcin Krzystanek. It is located in Czestochowa, Poland.  Originally they brewed out of a very small restaurant called “Browar Marysia” having a capacity of 5hl, because they wanted to slowly enter the market and make their presence known to see what the response would be to the beers they were brewing.

As the response was well received, they decided to look at refitting and opening a bigger space in an old Cisctercian brewery. They’ve been working on this since September 2014. The traditions of brewing in Szczyrzyc date back several centuries. The old brewery was nationalized at the time of the communist regime and then returned into the hands of the monks when the regime fell. Unfavorable market trends led to his downfall. The condition of the brewery was so bad that it was decided to replace the old brewery and replace it with new equipment and more tanks.

While they had initially wanted to brew 8 beers when they opened the new brewery in 2015, they’ve now reached the point where they are brewing 16 different brews. The brewery, despite its name meaning Factory Beer, focuses on high quality crafted beers.

Stouts are a dark beer made using roasted malts or roasted barley, hops, water and yeast.  Traditionally the term stout was used to describe the strongest (most alcoholic) porters, typically around 7-8%, produced by a brewery.  The reason for the name ‘stout’ was because these strong porters were often sold in stouter bottles than the standard porters.  This gave them the nickname ‘stout’ which eventually became the term used to describe the style of beer.

There are numerous styles of stouts ranging from Dry Stouts, to Porters, and Oyster stouts and my favorite Imperial Stouts.  The specific stout style, Foreign Extra Stout, were stronger stouts than those typically brewed for today’s market. Not quite getting to the Imperial Stout ABV but ranging in the 6.3-8% range. They have a history stretching back to the 18th century when they were more heavily hopped versions of stronger export stouts. Hops, of course, act as an excellent preservative and allow the beer to keep as it travels. Guinness Foreign Extra Stout (originally, West India Porter, later Foreign Extra Double Stout) was first brewed in 1801 per Guinness. It was brewed with extra hops to give it a distinctive taste and a longer shelf life.

The main difference between a Foreign Extra Stout and a domestic stout is the hop content and maturation of the beer. Let’s get to it.

 

Appearance – Black as space itself with a whisp of tan head.
Smell – Smells of deep rich chocolate, cherries, subtle coffee, and a distinct aroma of alcohol warmth.
Taste – Has a good rich malty backbone with a nice subtle hop bitterness that works with the roasted characteristic and subtle coffee/chocolate of the malt. Subtle cherry and dark fruit after notes.
Mouth feel – Medium-Full bodied with a light carbonation.
Overall – A very good stout. Fits the category with the extra hop bitterness and full rich flavour. Reminds me a bit of some other stouts I’ve had recently.
Do I like it?
– Yes, this was quite nice. I found the aroma to be reminiscent of an Imperial Stout. The taste and beer is more of a toned-down version and falls in between a standard stout and an imperial one. Very nice and good flavours.

 

 

The Tom Green Beer

beaus-logo-colour

It sure seems like it has been a long time since I’ve written about any of the beers I’ve been drinking.  It might be that – or the number has grown so large it’s a bit overwhelming when I look at the ones I wanted to write about. Whatever it may be, I’m back with a write up.  This time, I’m talking about one of the beers we’ll see on Liquor Marts’ shelves soon: Beau’s The Tom Green Beer.

I did a pretty in-depth write up about Beau’s when I met with co-founder Steve Beauchesne, but I do want to reiterate a bit about the brewery. Founded in 2006 in Vanleek Hill, Ontario by father and son Tim and Steve Beauchesne, Beau’s is an employee-owned and completely independent Canadian craft brewery. Led by head brewer Matt O’Hara, the focus at Beau’s is to brew interesting and tasty beers using only quality, certified-organic ingredients and local spring water. While not the only completely organic brewery in Canada, they certainly have made a name for themselves with their business practices: they’ve won over 85 awards for their brewing, packaging design and business practices. This includes two gold medals at Mondial de la Biere (Strasbourg, France, and Montreal Quebec); six gold medals at the Canadian brewing awards, seven times “Best Craft Brewery in Ontario” and seven times “Best Regularly Produced Beer in Ontario” at the Golden Tap Awards.

label-tomgreen-1024x1024

The Tom Green Beer was produced in collaboration with comedian and actor Tom Green.  For those of you who saw his sketch comedy show, you’ll remember he was known for drinking milk straight from the cow’s udder. His love for milk surely played a role in him wanting his beer to be a Milk Stout.

What I really admire about Beau’s is they give away a lot of details about their beers. So here are the technical specifications for the Tom Green Beer for those of you who are interested:

TECH SPECS
ALC/VOL: 5.0%

INGREDIENTS: Local Spring Water, Organic Barley Malts, Organic Oats, Organic Lactose, Organic Hops, Ale Yeast.

MALTS: 2 Row, Munich, Oats, Caramel 120, Roasted, Chocolate, Black (All Organic)

 

HOPS: Perle, Hersbrucker (All Organic)

YEAST: Ale Yeast

IBU’S: 27

OG: 14.1°P

FG: 6.3°P

SERVING TEMP.: 7-10° C

GLASSWARE: Nonic

As I’ve said many times on this blog, stouts are one of my favorite styles of beer. Stouts are a dark beer made using roasted malts (or roasted barley), hops, water and yeast. Traditionally the term stout was used to describe the strongest (most alcoholic) porters, typically around 7-8%, produced by a brewery. The name ‘stout’ referred to the often stouter bottles these brews were sold in, which eventually became the term used to describe the style of beer.

There are numerous sub-styles of stouts ranging from Dry Stouts, to Porters, and Oyster stouts and my favorite, Imperial Stouts. While they had lost popularity after the First World War, they’ve started to have a bit of an upswing due to the growing popularity in craft beer and breweries. Stouts are very versatile, allowing for a lot of creativity in adjuncts and flavouring. You can see a number of craft breweries playing with stouts regularly. Higher alcohol stouts also often age well, making them a wonderful cellaring beer.

This particular stout is known as a “sweet stout,” which are much sweeter and less bitter than most other stouts. This is a traditionally English style of stout developed in the early 1900s as a tonic for invalids and nursing mothers. Originally called Milk or Cream stouts, this designation is no longer permitted in England (even if it is everywhere else) and the name derives from the use of lactose, or milk sugar, as a sweetener in the beer. Lactose is not a fermentable sugar and remains after fermentation is complete, which gives this beer its sweet and creamy nature.

tom-green-beer

ABV – 5.0%         IBU – 27

Appearance – Opaque black with a nice tan head that leaves little lacing.
Smell – Slight roasted malt notes, coffee notes, sweet dough, and chocolate
Taste – Nice silky sweetness from the lactose, notes of toasted nuts and some caramel or brown sugar
Mouth Feel – Silky mouth feel with a nice carbonation. Dry start with a sweet finish
Overall Thoughts
– A bit of a lighter bodied stout than others I’ve had of this style. The sweetness isn’t overwhelming and provides a really nice contrast to the roasted notes and dry start of this beer. Very approachable beer that is easy to drink and provides some nice flavours.
Do I like it? – I do like this beer. I’m a big fan of stouts and I really like trying a good milk stout. For me, the lighter body of this stout makes it less heavy in the stomach and makes for an easier drinking beer. I think this is a solid milk stout and I’d love to have it again.

As with all of my write ups on beers, this is my opinion. I encourage everyone to get out and try new beers. If this sounds good to you, give it a try, if not, give it a try anyways.

-Beer Winnipeg

 

Day 14 – Saugatuck Brewing Company – Blueberry Maple Stout

Day 14 - Saugatuck Brewing Company - Blueberry Maple Stout

Yesterday was a pretty good day. I had the opportunity to sit down and relax a bit and forget that tomorrow I have to present my thesis defense.  I have to say that this process has been one of the most mentally taxing and at the same time, incredibly rewarding experiences I’ve ever undertaken.

I’ve been overall pretty impressed with a lot of the beers in this calendar so far. I’ve felt that many of them were quite tasty and have given me yet another opportunity to try a variety of different styles and flavours in beers.  Today will be no different as we have a Blueberry Maple Stout coming to us from Saugatuck Brewing Company in Douglas, Michigan.  Douglas is a city that is after our own hearts.  It’s been the “City of friendliness” since 1870. Well, Friendly Manitoba says hello Douglas.

Developed as a three-phase brewery plan by founder and original brew master Barry Johnson, Saugatuck Brewing Company first opened its doors in 2005.  In its infancy it consisted of a 3.5 barrel “brew on premise” system in a leased industrial space.  3.5 barrels is about 300 litres of beer, not very much when you are providing interesting and tasty craft beers.  So, in 2008 they moved to a 25,000 sq/ft facility that was fully remodeled to include an Irish style pub providing not only tasty beers but also tasty snacks.  They continued to use the “Brew on premise” system allowing for patrons to come in and brew their own beers to be taken away in bomber bottles after fermentation and carbonation were complete.

Around this same time a 10-barrel system was installed in the brew house and production began en masse of and start planning for regional distribution of their beers. Starting with a meager 70 barrels of fermentation space and only a single 650ml bottle filler, their first year consisted on only 250 barrels.  In 2010 they purchased Meheen 6 head bottle filler and in-line labeler enabling them to produce 4 mainstay styles of beer to be sold in six-packs. This allowed them to distribute not only to the lower part of Michigan but also into Chicago and they managed to reach 2000 barrels of production in 2012.

Today, Saugatuck Brewing boasts a large 45-barrel system paired with 960 barrels of fermentation space.  With newly installed bottling system and a fleet of over 6,000 kegs they are able to produce on average 13,000 barrels per year with a large scale distribution.  They produce a number of mainstay beers as well as seasonal and specialty beers. They’ve got quite the team over there as well, head up by head-brewer Ron Conklin and provide little write-ups on each member on their website.

This is the fourth stout that we’ve had in this advent calendar and, although a different variation on the style,  I already did a write up on stouts on Day 2. So if you are interested in reading a bit more about the Stout style, feel free to take a look at that one.

This particular stout is an American Stout and uses the base style of beer, essentially hops, roasted malts resulting in dark colour and caramel, toffee, and/or chocolate notes in the flavour.  It has then been flavoured using most likely blueberry syrup as well as maple syrup to provide those two addition flavours. American stouts are generally has more roasted malt flavours and are a bit hoppier than their Irish or English counterparts. Breweries will express individuality through their choice of roasted malts and flavourings and this one has had both blueberry and maple flavours likely through the addition of syrups. It should contain most of the appearance, smell and flavour of stout but with the addition of the blueberry and maple flavours.  Let’s try this one, I am excited to see how those blueberry and maple flavours come through.

Glassware: Stein, Pint Glass, or Snifter.
Temperature: 8-12 Celsius

Rating:  68/100

Appearance:  Jet black with a tan head that fades quickly leaving fast uprising bubbles.
Smell: Big blueberry aroma with hints of maple sweetness.  Really smells like blueberry pancakes with maple syrup.  There is a slight roasted malt with notes of chocolate present but only as undertones.
Taste:  Ridiculously sweet taste.  Almost overwhelmingly so.  It tastes like drinking blueberry syrup on the first taste, but once your palate has adjusted to the sweetness, it tones down a bit and some roasted malt comes through.  Slight roasted malt notes, low to non-existence hop bitterness, everything is outshone by the blueberry and maple notes.
Mouthfeel: Soft carbonation, full body, and sweetness dominating from start to finish.
Overall:
This is a very sweet stout. The flavour is dominated by the maple and blueberry and completely overwhelm any other flavour that might be there.  It would make a good desert beer to be sipped slowly in front of a fire or after a meal.
Do I like it: No.  I found that this beer was far too sweet.  The blueberry flavour was artificial tasting and the maple flavour was too much like syrup.  This beer was toned WAY up on the sweetness factor and was completely out of whack with any of the other flavours that might have been there.

Day 2 – Lighthouse Brewing Co – Black Sam Licorice Stout

Beer 2 - Lighthouse Brewing - Black Sam Licorice Stout

Yesterday was an excellent start to this year’s advent calendar.  I really enjoyed the Anderson Valley Fall Hornin’ Pumpkin Ale and I hope that it’s going to be the tone for the entire calendar.  This morning I got out of bed early and went right to the calendar to grab my beer.  The tabs are a little small and my hands don’t really fit, so I asked my wife to assist.  Lo and Behold the second beer of the 2015 Calendar is a Lighthouse Brewing Co.’s Black Sam Licorice Stout.  For full disclosure, I’m not a huge fan of black licorice.  I’ll give this beer the benefit of the doubt but I may end up not liking it just because of that.

First off let me say that Lighthouse Brewing has a really fun website.  I am really impressed with the design if not the content.  So, I’d suggest you check it out.  Also, they posted a video of one of the crew talking a bit about the beer.  Check it out here.

Now, Lighthouse was founded in 1998 and is located on Devonshire Road in Victoria BC.  When founded, the demand for small batch craft beer was not really where it is today.  Brewing a Race Rocks Ale in the early days and delivering them to local pubs, Lighthouse quickly garnered a name for quality, local beer in a time when generic brands were king.

Lighthouse is made up of a crew of passionate people of which they don’t really provide much information.  Passion is a trademark behind the brewing at Lighthouse and they have a number of really interesting beers.  Besides their house series of beers, they also have an explorer series (of which the Licorice Stout is a member) as well as an uncharted series (currently just an Imperial IPA). Check out their full beer line-up here.

The beer that we have from Lighthouse today is one that has only recently been released in BC.  It’s also only available are certain private beer stores.  So, it’s one that I may not have a chance to try again for quite a while.  I’m excited.

Stouts are a dark beer made using roasted malts or roasted barley, hops, water and yeast.  Traditionally the term stout was used to describe the strongest (most alcoholic) porters, typically around 7-8%, produced by a brewery.  The reason for the name ‘stout’ was because these strong porters were often sold in stouter bottles than the standard porters.  This gave them the nickname ‘stout’ which eventually became the term used to describe the style of beer.

There are numerous styles of stouts ranging from Dry Stouts, to Porters, and Oyster stouts and my favorite Imperial Stouts.  While they had lost popularity in the early 20th century after the First World War, they have started to have a bit of an upswing due to the growing popularity in craft beer and breweries.  Stouts are very versatile allowing for a lot of creativity in adjuncts and flavouring and you can see a number of craft breweries doing stouts quite regularly.  Stouts also often age well making them a wonderful cellaring beer.  Without any further ado, my impression of Lighthouse’s Licorice Stout.

Appearance – Abysmal Black with no head (May just be my bottle).
Smell – Smells like licorice allsorts with a hint of chocolate.
Taste – Coffee and chocolate malt on the front with a sweet candy flavour finish.
Mouth feel – Coats the tongue, soft mouthfeel, low carbonation,
Overall – Flavourful stout with strong malt flavours and a good sweet finish. Not overly sweet. A good stout for someone who maybe doesn’t drink stouts often or is new to stouts. Not an overly heavy stout.
Do I like it?
– I did like it. It was an all-around good stout that I would enjoy drinking on a cold Winnipeg winter day/evening.  I’d definitely buy this, but I wasn’t blown out of the water.

81/100

Craft Beer Advent Calendar – Day 10

Beer 10

I believe the best thing about this craft beer advent calendar is that I get to try beers I would likely never have an opportunity to try.  While I do travel a lot and partake in “beer tourism” as much as I can, there are still some beers that I would be unlikely to find.  I believe that today’s beer is one of those.

Today’s beer comes to us from a small brewery in the Flókadalur valley region of Iceland called Gðingur Brewing Ltd.  This region is located in the northern part of Iceland near the northern coast about 360 km from Reyjavik.  The brewery was founded in 2011 with the purpose of using the local flora and Icelandic culture to brew new and exciting beers.  The brewery is run by 3 people.  Arni is the owner of the brewery and the farm from which they get their ingredients.  Birgitte is a partner to Arni in the brewery building.  She is also a seamstress.  Joe is the brewer in the operation and responsible for the beer that we are going to be trying today.

The brewing system that they use at Gðingur Brewing is a British 6 barrel brewery system.  While you can create most types of beers using this system, it is a lower yield system that can produce 980 litres of beer at any given time.  Given that, they are one of the smaller breweries we have had the opportunity to try. They produce 4 beers at present, a lager, a stout (which we are trying today), an IPA and a pale ale.  There stout is brewed using roasted malts from the farm.  This is the first stout that we are going to have a chance to try as well.  Two firsts today!

Stouts are a dark beer made using roasted malts or roasted barley, hops, water and yeast.  Traditionally the term stout was used to describe the strongest (most alcohol) porters, typically around 7-8%, produced by a brewery.  There are numerous styles of stouts ranging from Dry Stouts, to Porters, and Oyster stouts.  While they had lost popularity in the early 20th century after the First World War, they have started to have a bit of an upswing due to the growing popularity in craft beer and breweries.

When I think of a stout I think of a beer that is on the exact opposite end of the spectrum from an IPA.  Rather than hopping to bring out that floral and bitterness from the beer, malts are used to bring out rich sweet flavours like chocolate, coffee, and caramel.  Stouts are a very heavy beer as well often considered almost a meal.  I am really excited to try this stout today and see what this small Icelandic brewery has in store! On to the beer!

Rating: 79/100

Appearance: Black like the depths of the ocean with 1” of foamy head.
Smell: Chocolate, caramel, and smoke notes.
Taste: Rich and deep almost like milk with chocolate notes right on the front.  Flows into mild bitterness that leaves a smokiness in the mouth.
Mouth feel: Silky smooth and full bodied.
Overall: The flavours of the stout go well together. The sweetness is definitely there on the front but then it blends into a bitter smokiness on the finish. This stout is well balanced and quite a good example of a stout.
Do I like it: I used to drink stouts quite a lot.  Their heavy nature tends to make them something I am less like to reach for these days.  This is an excellent example of a stout and I did rather enjoy it.  Good balance between the sweet and the bitter and I really rather enjoyed the smokiness on the finish.  Something I would not likely buy, but would be fine drinking.