Tag Archives: Malt

Pale Trial Ein – Review

The five beers that make up Pale Trial Ein are more different than I expected. Time hasn’t softened them into a similar flavour. Rather the opposite. The difference is more pronounced after a couple months conditioning. A couple Sundays ago Chas was over for a brewing day and we did a side-by-side review of all five.

Pale Trial Ein 1-5 for review

Pale Trial Ein 1-5 ready for tasting and for review

Before going further into the review a recap is called for. These five beers were all brewed from the same batch. One boil with liquid malt and Victoria Secret hops, and the same yeast (US-05). The only difference was the yeast nutrient and if a Campden tablet was added. That’s it. All fermented at the same temperature, same amount of sugar for bottle priming, same again for bottle conditioning. All of this done to learn. And what was learnt? Let’s find out…

Common characteristics
All five come from the same base. There is a clear dark stone fruit flavour up front. Solid amber malt in the middle. Then finishes with a sharp bitterness with the malt background.

The descriptions below are slightly exaggerated to highlight the differences.

Pale Trial Ein 1
The “control” of the beers. With the modern yeast nutrient only.
Aroma is of dark fruit and still subtle. Body is straight forward. The bitterness comes in quite sharply at the end. It is the most aggressive with hop bitterness. Bitter beer.

Pale Trial Ein 2
This one was with same yeast nutrient and a Campden tablet.
The softest flavours of the lot. Hop fruit flavours at the start. A nice easy amber malt body. Not very bitter at all… until the very end and there’s a kick. And that really kills the softness.
Okay, nothing special.

Pale Trial Ein 3
This is the one with the really old yeast nutrient only.
A much lighter beer than all the others. Light and fresh hop aroma. Lighter amounts of stone fruit up front. Body is a bit easier and laid back. The hops at the back are quite lighter and there is a subtle creaminess.
Easy and light.

Pale Trial Ein 4
This is the one with a Campden tablet only.
Very soft aroma. Starts with a solid stone fruit flavour, but not overpowering. There’s a mellow and big dark-ish fruit flavour. There’s a bit of bitter end to this which works quite well to offset the stone fruit flavours.
Creamy.

Pale Trial Ein 5
This is the one with the really old yeast nutrient and a Campden tablet.
Light and smooth rich aroma which is very nice. Starts off very smooth indeed, then the big fruit comes in and works a treat. Darker than beer #2, #3 and #4. Towards the end there’s smooth finish with a hint of bitterness working well with the body.
Smooth.

Summary
If I was to match these beers to something it would be a salty or spicy roast meat. Maybe barbecued. Or something fried with spice. You need something to work with the big bitter hops in the beer.

It’s a tough choice between #3 and #5 for best beer. Winner is #5 . Runner up is #3, in third place comes #4, forth is #2 and clearly in last place is #1.

It might seam like a wide range in flavours from the reviews above, and it does feel like that when they’re side by side. If you pick up a #1 or #5 first off, you still taste the same thing, stone fruit hops with amber malt. Then the bitterness takes over. I think there was too much hops. Victoria Secret hops have a big kick which I’ve see it in my all grain and here in the Pale Trial Ein series. Does this make these bad beers? No. But there’s room for improvement. And I’ll work on that.

It has been a really interesting journey with these beers. They’re the end of a mini story of finding my Dad’s old wine brewing equipment, cleaning, brewing, bottling and finally tasting. But the journey doesn’t end. The Pale Trial Zwie beers are ready for drinking. Will need to get into them and write up a review.

-Mikey

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Malted Cider 2 – review

On Saturday Chas had another brew day at his place. Was another good day with what should be a good beer. He’ll cover the details later. We did some tastings on the day. My Sneaky Cider and Chas’s Malted Cider 2. Two different takes on cider.

Malted Cider 2

Malted Cider 2 ready for drinking

The Malted Cider, a graft, was the second attempt by Chas. The first one was an okay drink. But each time I tried some it was eggy in aroma. Chas said that there was less egg smell in the other bottles. Anyway, onto the new version. And it had a slight eggy smell. Granted it was very slight, and Chas assures me that there isn’t any of that in other bottles. The main character for the aroma was the rich sweetness. Not a sickly sweetness like raw sugar, more like rich fruit.

After the smell the first thing you notice is the feeling. It has a big creamy mouth feel. This fills out and gives the cider a lot of substance. I really like that a lot. The sweetness slowly builds. it doesn’t become too much, and that keeps this grounded. The malt helps with body and keeping the whole thing under control and smooth. There’s a nice apple flavour along the whole way. And that’s good, ‘cos a lot of apples went into this.

This isn’t a drink I would choose for a session. More of something for an easy match with dinner after work, or before dinner. And this comes in at 6.4% alcohol. So another good reason not to knock back a few of these in a row.

I’m really impressed with the substance of this cider. We talked about it on Saturday and agreed that there’s something missing. It’s like the cider is halfway between two points and doesn’t know where/what it wants to be. Maybe a different yeast and/or temperature might help. Or maybe just a different malt?

-Mikey

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Malted Cider 2 – let’s try this again

I’m baaaaaaaack!

Yeah, yeah, I know, it’s been awhile.  Mikey hasn’t stopped reminding me.  It’s mostly Mikey’s fault I haven’t been around in awhile.  As Mikey mentioned, brewing slowed down a bit over the summer, so there wasn’t much to write up.  Although I pushed through the heat and still did a couple a brews, giving Mikey an opportunity to write reviews for things like the Red Dog Pale Ale 2, since Mikey was slack, I had nothing to review.  Unfortunately I just got out of the habit… because of Mikey.

Anyway, nearly a year ago I mixed some apple juice with some liquid malt; I called it a malted cider, some call it a graft.  Either way it’s pretty tasty.

20140208_113144The recipe was about the same as last time, just with different apples this time.  Last time I got some organic apples, this time it was just a whole bunch of Pink Lady apples, they worked out pretty well.

I also changed up the method somewhat…

  • First, all the apples were chopped and let to sit for a few hours.  This just softened them up a tiny bit and I’ve been told this gives a slightly sweeter cider (otherwise it’s way too dry).
  • Next, we juiced all the apples, as would be expected!  In the pot and since there is a bit of froth (and eventual evaporation), it’s hard to tell how much juice there is.  So we didn’t add the malt right away.
  • We gave the juice a 10-15 minute boil to kill any nasties.
  • This went into the fermenter.
  • Golden light liquid malt was then added at a ratio of half a cup per litre of juice.
  • We then topped the fermtenter up with cold water at a ratio of one litre of water to one litre of juice.
  • Pitch some wine yeast and done!

It’s a pretty simple recipe!  All the chopping and juicing of the apples took a fair while.  It also made one hell of a mess but it was a bit of fun.

In the end we got a OSG of 1.053, which we were pretty happy about!  Considering we’ll probably get a pretty low final gravity, since the fructose in the apples will ferment almost completely, this cider should have some kick!

Let’s see what happens…

-Chas

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New and old, recipe and brewer mix up

Saturday brew day was a long one, nearly 5 hours. I wanted to have another crack at the Baltic Porter. Chas wasn’t available so my mate Kilan came over to give me a hand.

Kilan has done a bit of home brewing over the last few years. Most of his equipment is in storage. He’s still been able to make some cider and brought over a bottle to share. Will talk about that later.

Was fun to have Kilan over for the arvo. We worked on a few things that neither of us had done before. Had a couple near misses and a whole heap of improvisation. By the end of the day we had bottled the Hoppy Heart IPA and brewed what we felt would be a really good beer.

The last time I did the Baltic Porter it was a 10 litre batch. The beer came out nice enough but lacked some body. The beer had a little too much sweetness. There was room to adds more complexity. In short, there was a lot that could be tweaked.

Baltic Porter #2 Mash

Baltic Porter #2
Grains in bag, in pot and mashing

Given the relative ease of the full grain mash at Chas’s last week I thought of trying a mini mash. The recipe was upping to a 17 litre batch and ingredients to match. That meant a lot more grain. Last time the recipe only had Crystal grains, which can’t mass by themselves. With advice from Chas I decided to include some Chocolate malt, which I believe can mash. So all 2kg of the grain went in to mash.

Kilian was a champ and crushed the chocolate malt grain. The only thing I had was a mortar and pestal which meant some grain got crushed. Hope that doesn’t make much difference.

The Crystal grain went into a grain bag and into the pot. The Chocolate grain got thrown into the bag then all was stirred in. Mash was done at 68°C and had 5 litres of water. Wow, that grain soaked it all up and expanded like a balloon! Mash went for a full sixty mins.

While waiting for the mash to finish we bottled the Hoppy Heart IPA. The final gravity came in at 1.019. With the carbonation drops it will be 6.4% alcohol. And before you ask, yes I will move to bulk priming soon.

We opened the apple cider that Kilan brought. That was an interesting drink, and I mean that in all ways. We chilled it right down and was cold most of the time. First up it tasted like alcoholic orange juice, not like apple. Sort of super sweet and slightly tart. The smell was pretty bad, almost like something off. As it warmed up the cider became more like apple and more dry. Much better cold. I think something might have gone wrong with the yeast and / or fermentation. Let’s see euchre same thing happens to my cider.

Back to the brew, and mash was done. Only problem now was how to sparge the grain. And there was a huge amount. Was fortunate that the kettle we have at home has different temperature settings with the lowest being 75°C. So we used that and poured the water over the bag of grains. Each time we tried to press out as much liquid as possible, but we didn’t really have the right set up. After a few kettle’s worth of water at said temperature there was a lot of volume for the boil. I would have liked to do more sparging, but the boil pot just wouldn’t hold it all.

Baltic Porter #2 Grains

Baltic Porter #2
Grains ready for more sparging

So onto the boil. Earlier I realised that I didn’t have the exact amount of hops to do what I wanted. There wasn’t as much Warrior and that was suppose to be the bittering. As a compromise I moved some of the Fuggles from aroma stage to taste. By moving them earlier it should add a bit more bitterness, and hopefully balance. Will have to wait and see.

Once the boil started we re-hydrated the yeast. It’s the first time I’ve done this. It was pretty easy. The only problem is the water that was boiled so early on it cooled down too much. A quick zap in the microwave brought it back up to temperature. The yeast sat in the water while we dissolved the tea spoon of dry malt in half a glass of boiled water. Then waited half an hour before adding that in and gave it a mix.

I held off on adding the dry malt for a bit. Have been getting advice not to add all malt at the start of boils and wanted to try it out. As a result we didn’t get a hot break, it just came to a boil. Bittering hops went in at start, then taste hops at thirty minutes with the first 800 grams of dry malt a five minutes later. Another fifteen minutes later added in the last 400 grams of dry malt. Five mins after that the aroma hops. Then only five more mins before flame out.

Pot was transferred to an ice bath. Some ice cubes went directly into the wort, water previously boiled before frozen. A second bath for the pot. Then into the fermenter. Added a little more sparged grain liquid, that might not have been the best idea as I’m not sure if that could have lead to contamination. Too late now! The liquid malt only went in at this stage, note that it wasn’t part of the boil. Not sure if that will make much difference. Let me know what you think with a comment below.

The wort was still quite hot. That was even after adding about four litres of very cold water. Will need more ice if I’m going to do something this large and this method again. After a couple hours the temperature was down to something close to what I wanted. Yeast was pitched at about 25°C. I forgot to put the yeast nutrient in at the same time. So, went back an hour later and put in four heaped teaspoons and sealed back up.

 

Baltic Porter #2 Yeast

Baltic Porter #2
Re-hydrated Yeast in the jug

60 min mash at 68°C

– 1.5 kg of Crystal 120
– 500 grams of Chocolate Malt 600

Boil wort from mash
60 min
add 8 grams of Warrior hops
30 min
add 14 grams of Fuggels hops
25 min
add 800 grams of light malt extract
10 min
add 400 grams of light malt extract
5 mins
add 5 grams of Fuggels hops

Into ferment:
– wort
– 1.7 kg of Amber liquid malt extract (Black Rock)
– water & ice to bring to 17 litres

Once at 25°C
add 7 grams of yeast, 5g Windsor & 2g kit yeast (previously re-hydrated)
add 4 heaped teaspoons of yeast nutrient

A bit of a strange brew. Some new techniques and processes. Some corrections from previous brews. Some ingredients just thrown together, like hops and yeast. The final gravity came in at 1.071 which is pretty good given the calculated was only 0.002 higher than that. If fermentation can take it down to 1.025 that will mean about 6.5% alcohol before bottling. And this one will be bulk primed.

-Mikey

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Friedlieb Coffee Porter – Second Trial

Back in June, Mikey and I made a coffee porter that I named The Friedlieb. It turned out great, but I was after a little bit more peat smoke in there, and Mikey found some of the sweetness “distracting”.

Coffee!

Coffee!

So we modified the recipe a little bit.  First off, we were doing twelve litres this time around, not the four we originally did; mostly we just multiplied everything by three.  We also added a bit more peated barley, a bit less light liquid malt extract, and, as there were some malted grains in the grain bill, decided to mash the grains rather than just steep them.  Hopefully this achieves the desired affects.

Anyway, before I go into the recipe, as mentioned, this is a coffee porter.  When we made the first batch, we were only using eight shots of coffee, which isn’t too difficult or expensive.  Upping things up to twenty four shots of coffee wouldn’t have been too expensive or difficult, but there’s always a better way!  So, a big thanks to my good friend from Husband Cafe for supplying his wastage.

So the recipe (for 12 litres) was:

  • 1.5 kilograms golden light liquid malt extractFried 4
  • 270 grams dark dry malt extract
  • 270 grams dark crystal
  • 150 grams chocolate malt
  • 180 grams peated malt
  • 150 grams melanoidin malt
  • 180 grams rye malt
  • 9 grams Willamette hops (bittering) – 30 minutes
  • 9 grams Fuggles hops (taste) – 15 minutes
  • 9 grams Fuggles hops (aroma) – 0 minutes
  • 24 shots espresso
  • 3 cups brown sugar
  • Windsor style ale yeast

As mentioned, we decided to mash the grains.  The right mashing temperature can change depending on what you’re after and what grains are being used, but we were winging it a bit and just decided to mash at 65 degrees C; it’s nice and middle of the road.  The mash time was 60 minutes in 5 litres of water.

Unlike the all grain pale ale we did a couple weeks ago, we didn’t have as much trouble keeping the water temperature steady.  This was probably because we were using much more water.

So the grains sat there for an hour while Mikey and I bottle the pale ale.  It tasted great by the way, but we think it will need quite a bit of time in the bottle to calm down.

With the mashing done, we threw in the malt extracts and got everything to a boil.

Once the boil started everything was pretty standard.  The bittering hops went in at the start, fifteen minutes in came the taste hops, and the aroma went in at flame out another fifteen minutes later.  Along with the aroma hops we threw in the espresso and the brown sugar.

A little tip on ingredients: always double check that you have the ingredients.  I assumed I had enough brown sugar but I didn’t!  Thankfully I was able to steal some from my housemate.  Also, let’s see if my housemate actually reads this blog, because she doesn’t know I took it!

Fried 1Getting the wort cold was difficult.  We ended up with about seven litres of liquid: five litre mash, a couple litres for sparging, coffee, etc.  We got it coldish pretty quickly with some ice and cold water, but even in three ten minute water baths it wouldn’t drop below 30 degrees.  I need to start taking a cue from Mikey and preparing lots of ice and cold water.

Anyway, we poured everything into the fermenter, topped it up to 12 litres, and took a quick break on the homebrew couch while we let things cool a little.  The wort was about 27 degrees by the time we topped up the fermenter, but we wanted a few degrees lower.

After that, we pitched the yeast and gave it a good stir to aerate it.  The gravity reading was 1.073, which is quite high, so we wanted to get plenty of oxygen in there.  I’m quite excited about this high gravity.  The mash obviously added quite a bit.  If we’re lucky and get the final gravity down enough, hopefully we’ll end up with quite a strong beer!

I’m really excited about this beer.  It’s going to be about two weeks in the fermenter, and then quite a bit of time in the bottle.  We’ll report in after that.

-Chas

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Let’s do this! Red Dog Pale Ale

Well, another weekend another brew day.

We decided to step it up a notch this weekend and go for an all grain batch.  It was a relatively small notch though.  While the batch was an all grain, it was kept to only four litres and the mashing was done in a bag using the brew in a bag (BIAB) technique.  No malt extract was used though, so it wasn’t a mini-mash.

Anyway, the recipe we used was courtesy of jyo on the Aussie Home Brewer Forums and can be found here.  You’ll note that the original recipe was for a 23 litre batch, however we modified the quantities to only make four litres.

The modified recipe was:

Brewing in a bag!

Brewing in a bag!

  • 782 grams Joe White Traditional Ale Malt
  • 7 grams Crystal
  • 5 grams Weyermann Carapils
  • 7 grams Cascade hops (bittering) – 60 minutes total boil
  • 5 grams Cascade hops (taste) – 15 minutes total boil
  • 5 grams Chinook hops (aroma) – 1 minute total boil
  • DCL US 05 American Ale Yeast
  • 4 grams Cascade hops (dry hopping) – after 2 days

Mashing temperature was called for 65 degrees C.

The recipe called for a 90 minute mash, which is what we did.  The BIAB technique is pretty simple.  First we calculated the strike temperature which was pretty simple and got three litres of water up to this temperature in a pot.

This technique is called brew in a bag because the grains were kept in a bag while submerged in water.  While this was easy, keeping the temperature at exactly 65 degrees was fairly difficult.  The pot seemed to keep heat fairly well, but there were large discrepancies in different areas when we took temperature readings.  If anything we probably should have used more water.

For those more interested in the procedure, Craig from Craigtube does a great demonstration here.

While we waited for the grain to mash, Mikey and went ahead and bottled the Honey Bomb Wheat Beer we made a couple weeks ago.  There was a fair bit of time to kill during the mashing process, so between checking it and adjusting the temperature we bottled and knocked back a couple home brews on the Home Brew Couch.

About to get the hot break

About to get the hot break

With the mash done, it was sparged with another couple of litres of water and we started the boil.  During the sparge we could really tell that the sugar had come out of the grain.  We were left with a great, thick liquid that was a beautiful brown colour.  And it smelled amazing.

From there it was pretty much the same as any other brew.  The hops were added for bittering, taste, and aroma.  Two days later I added some more hops as a dry hopping.

When we were all done, we got a OSG of 1.042.  Unfortunately the recipe stated an OSG 1.053, so we were a bit off…  I attribute this not only to our temperature difficulties with the mash, but also because we ended up topping the carboy up to four and a half litres rather than four; so it was watered down a little more than it should be.

I’m expecting quite a bit from this brew.  I think it should turn out to be a fairly decent American Pale Ale.  The wort tasted great and full of grain, but it should be fairly well combated by the hop additions.  We’ll see how it is in a couple weeks!

– ChasRed Dog1

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Mangrove Jack’s Mildy Dark – review

While I was on my holiday, Mikey did a brew of Mangrove Jack’s Mildly Dark all on his own.  This was a simple extract kit with a few other things thrown in to make it a dark.  Judging from the recipe, Mikey threw a couple extra malts in here, and, if I remember correctly, Mikey mentioned he had trouble getting everything to ferment.

Because of this, the beer took a little longer than usual to condition in the bottle as well.  We tried it a couple weeks ago and it wasn’t quite ready.  We tried it again over the weekend and it was definitely ready.

mildly darkOn the colour, it was a good dark brown with a bit of red when held up to the light.  Dark, but not murky.  It was almost a brown ale in colour, but I’d consider it over the line to be a “dark” ale.

The smell was great and interesting, with quite a bit in there.  The main things in there were toffee, citrus, and apple.  The interaction of the apple and the citrus was great, and really complimented the toffee smells well.  When I really stuck my nose in there, I also was able to find a little bit of chocolate in there too.

The taste was great and easy.  The beer was quite obviously hopped, but mildly so, with the malt really taking the foreground.  Gladly, the apple came through in the taste as well, which interacted with the malt quite well.  Mixed in among this was a bit of a licorice taste  with a tiny bit of molasses as well.

Unfortunately there wasn’t a lot at the end to really round out the flavour, which I would have really liked to see; just something to round everything out.  I think if an additional taste hop had been added, a little bit of complexity could have been added in the finish.  The kit that Mikey made didn’t call for any additional hopping, but had he added something mild, it would have been welcome.

I think this beer would go well with a nice hard cheese.  It’s a fairly sweet beer, but not overly so.  A hard, but fairly mild cheese would be a great way to accompany this beer.

– Chas

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Brewing alone, and making a mess

Chas is still overseas, and will be for a couple more weeks. So this week’s brew, and next one in two weeks time, will be sans Chas. Next brew I hope to be joined by Ian, but this week it was just by my lonesome.

Like any normal brew day first thing is to bottle the last batch. So, most if the 10 litres of Baltic Porter #1 made it’s way into bottles. I say most because, (1) there was a gravity reading sample to be taken, and (2) there was an accident. The little thing that regulates the flow of beer (aka the bottling valve) fell off into one if the bottles as I was filling it. I freaked out a bit, thinking to get as much as possible into bottles before remembering there was a tap! Once things were under control again I reattached the bottling valve and had no more problems. Needless to say I’ve got some bottles that I’m not sure how they’ll condition, and they all marked with a question mark.

Final gravity came in at 1.021. That means after bottle fermentation it will sit at 7.2%. I’m very happy with that.

Mildly Dark #1

The Mildly Dark #1 sitting in the fermenter.

As this was a solo affair, had a sizeable break before brewing.
Back a few weeks ago when I picked up the ingredients for the Baltic Porter #1 there were a couple other things I picked up as they were on special. The main thing was the Mangrove Jack’s Mild kit. It’s a liquid malt extract and known for having some decent quality.
I also picked up some “factory second” dry malt. It was recommended to boil up the stuff for use. I just threw it into boiled water, and had a little problem getting it to dissolve.
Finally, had a can of dark liquid malt extract that I bought by mistake earlier on.

All up this was a kit with a lot of malt additions, both dry and liquid. Given the mistakes of the Australian Pale Ale #1 and Australian Amber Ale #1, I’m feeling a lot better about this brew. Given the extra dark malt I’ve dubbed this beer Mildly Dark #1.

Ingredients:

  • Mangrove Jack’s Mild kit
  • 500g “factory second” DME
  • 1.5kg Black Rock LME

Gravity ended at 1.056. Happy with that. If it ferments down to around 1.020 then the final ABV will come in around 5%, and that’s something to look forward to.

-Mikey

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Australian Pale Ale # 1- Review

So, the Australian Pale Ale was ready for drinking.  Kind of…

This brew was Mikey seeing what would happen if he added a full can of malt (usually for a 20 litre brew) to only four litres of waterAus pale ale.  It didn’t turn out too well.

Firstly, it was very dark for a pale ale.  The malt hadn’t been diluted enough so it was still fairly dark.

In the smell, it was very sweet and very malty.  A few floral smells managed to make it through, but it was tough to find them through the sweetness.

This continued on through the taste, which was extremely overpowering.  As mentioned, this was a whole can of malt for a very small batch.  The beer was excessively malty and very sweet.  It was also very thick.  It was not unlike cordial when not enough water is added; still much too concentrated.

Unfortunately there isn’t much else to say about this beer.  The malt and sweetness was so overpowering, there just wasn’t much else there.  Mikey insists that he was able to find some hops tastes in there, and granted, there is a little bit of bitterness coming through, but not much.

Anyway, adding way too much malt  does not bear the best results.  Sorry Mikey, this isn’t the best creation…

– Chas

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Black Rock Miners Stout – Review

Stout, stout, stouty stout stout.

Yesterday we tasted the Black Rock Miners Stout in addition to doing a brew that I’m sure Mikey will write up.  We also tasted the Gauss’ Law Hopped Cider as well as Mikey’s Australian Pale Ale.  Reviews of these will be coming as well.

Anyway, the stout!

First of all, it looked very much like a stout.  Very dark, decent head while pouring, although the head retention was lacking a little bit.

Unfortunately there wasn’t a whole lot of aroma; the aroma was there, but quite very subtle.  I wasn’t able to get much out of it, but there were hints of brown sugar, chocolate, general sweetness and some malt and sticky smells as well.  There wasn’t much in terms of overt hops smells, but that is where some of the sticky sweet may have been coming from: floralStout mixing with the malt perhaps.

On the first taste, it was apparent that this is a weaker stout of 4% ABV with very little body, especially for a stout.

The subtle chocolate flavours continue as well as the subtle malt flavours, but other than that, the flavour is just “there.”  There wasn’t much to put my finger on, nothing obvious coming out to set it apart.  All the fairly standard stout flavours were there, but nothing to talk about.

As it was a stout, I wasn’t expecting any wild hops tastes, but, that being said, I couldn’t find much hops in there except for a mild amount of bitterness.  I would have liked maybe some floral or spicy flavours in there, just to add a bit of a twist.  Then again, I’ve been drinking a lot of imperial stouts lately, so maybe my pallet for stouts is a bit off…

Overall, it’s a good beer, but not great.  It’s very accessible but very middle of the road.  Because of this, it would make a fairly sessionable stout.  It would also make a good introduction to stout for those who don’t usually drink it.

In relation to food, these heavier beers generally go with heavier, meatier dishes, and this is no exception.  I think stouts are always good with barbecue, but I’d reserve this for a barbecued white meat like chick.  I also think that this stout is light enough to enjoy with a relatively hardy pasta with a good thick red sauce.

-Chas

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