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View Full Version : What makes a Stout a Stout ?



jstrausss
05-07-2003, 12:01 PM
I know the Diffrence i na Lager ,and an Ale . what is a stout ?

Thanks John

Richard English
05-07-2003, 02:52 PM
Try one - and let your eyes, nose and tastebuds tell you! You'll never need to ask again!

jstrausss
05-08-2003, 03:08 PM
ok - I 'm Sure theres a Big difrence in the Taste . I kind of realized that on my own , but as far as Ingredents ???

John

hopjack13
05-08-2003, 09:02 PM
im no brewer , but from my understanding it's the malt , a chocolate malt is used, i've even seen a few of them, they're very dark almost black. im sure the procedure of the brewing process varies from beer to beer as well ,but the defining character is from the chocolate malt (as far as i know). now heres another one stouts are obviously heavier then porters and tend to be a little thicker as well ......why is that? where does the defining character of the two other then the viscosity come from?

jstrausss
05-09-2003, 11:40 AM
Cool - Thanks for the input

Richard English
05-09-2003, 11:57 AM
In fact, stout was first made in Dublin by accident. The brewer had started roasting his malt (all malted barley is roast but usually only slightly).

However the brewer, whose name was Arthur, let his malt roast for too long (maybe he had one too many in the boozer) and let the malt burn. Because he didn't have the cash to throw it all out and start again he decided to brew using the heavily roasted malt grains and - what do you know - people liked what they tasted. And the rest of the story is history.

Arthur Guinness's brew is now probably the best-known beer in the world and is an ever-welcome oasis of taste in a desert of chemical-fizz mediocrity.

hopjack13
05-09-2003, 06:29 PM
interesting, an accident you say....maybe i should start brewing...i'm goooood at accident!:D .belch!

BluesHarp
05-09-2003, 07:13 PM
1995 AHA Style Guidelines


9. Porter

a. Robust Porter
Black. No roast barley character. Sharp bitterness of black malt, without high burnt/charcoallike flavor. Medium to full bodied. Malty sweet. Hop bitterness medium to high. Hop flavor and aroma: none to medium, Fruitiness/esters OK. Low diacetyl OK.
OG 1.044-60, 5-6.5%, 25-40 IBUs, 30+ SRM.
Anchor Porter, Sierra Nevada Porter.

b. Brown Porter
Medium to dark brown. No roast barley or strong burnt malt character. Light to medium body. Low to medium malt sweetness. Medium hop bitterness. Hop flavor and aroma: none to medium. Fruitiness/esters OK. Low diacetyl OK.
OG 1.040-50, 4.5-6%, 20-30 IBU, 20-35 SRM.
Indianapolis Dark.


11. Stout
a. Classic Dry Stout
Black opaque. Medium body. Medium to high hop bitterness. Roasted barley character is required, but can be at low levels. Slight malt sweetness or caramel malt character OK. No hop flavor or aroma. Slight acidity/sourness OK. Very low diacetyl OK.
OG 1.038-48, 3.8-5%, 30-40 IBU, 40+ SRM.
Guinness Draft, Murphy's Draft.

b. Foreign Style
Black/opaque. Medium to full body. No hop aroma and flavor. Slight acidity/sourness OK. Very low diacetyl OK. Low fruity-esters OK.
OG 1.052-72, 6-7.5%, 30-60, 40+ 60 IBU, 40+ SRM. Guiness Extra, Sierra Nevada Stout.

c. Sweet Stout/Cream Stout
Overall character sweet. Black opaque. Medium to full body. Hop bitterness low. Roasted barley (coffeelike) character mild. No hop flavor or aroma. Sweet maltiness and caramel flavors evident. Low diacetyl OK.
OG 1.045-56, 3-6%, 15-25 IBU, 40+ SRM.
Mackeson's Stout, Sam Adams Cream Stout.

d. Imperial Stout
Dark copper to very black. Hop bitterness, flavor and aroma medium to high. Alcohol strength evident. Rich maltiness. High fruitness/esters. Full-bodied. Very low diacetyl OK.
OG 1.075-95, 7-9%, 50-80 IBU, 20+ SRM.
Grant's Imperial Stout, Sam Smith's Imperial Stout, Courage Imperial Stout.


For info on all styles:



AHA style guide (http://realbeer.com/spencer/AHA-1995-styles.html)

hopjack13
05-09-2003, 07:15 PM
well i guess that sums it up pretty well....thnx

chazwicke
05-25-2003, 02:50 PM
By the way, Stouts and Porters ARE ales. There is a variety of roasted malts that can be used. Black patent and chocolate are the most popular but are usually blended with crystal or some other less roated malts. Most American stouts and porters are way over done in my opinion. The Irish and Brits are masters in these styles and have learned how to make them with sublety and finesse. Incidentally, it is a myth that these beers are stronger in alcohol. Guinness is 4% while most American macros are 4.5% (excepting light beer).

mttam510
06-04-2003, 03:53 PM
Guinness is mothers milk, I was @ the brewery in Sept 02.....It was awesome! It was easy to consume 6-7 pints a day, especially with the low ABV content. Actually stout was born of Porter which was the popular fermented, foaming adult beverage of the time that was mainly drunk by Londons Porters......hence the name. The taxes imposed on Irish imports at the time almost forced Sir Arthur to brew in South Wales. Thankfully, for the Irish, he stayed put in Dublin. There is nothing better than a Guinness served in Ireland, no comparison to the Guinness served in the UK. Too many pubs here do not pour the black gold correctly, a proper pour is an art in itself. :)

chazwicke
06-04-2003, 05:51 PM
Guinness is one macro that I love.

mttam510
06-04-2003, 07:35 PM
Indeed! The best Macro there is!

Richard English
06-05-2003, 02:20 AM
It is not generally known that the recipe (and the strength) of Guinness varies according to where (and sometimes when) it is brewed. Furthermore, although all Guinness's look the same, there are several different types (mainly bottled).

To assume that a Guinness is a Guinness is the same as assuming that, say, a bitter is a bitter.

At the GBBF a couple of years ago it was possible to sample Guinnesses brewed in various locations (I recall Nigeria as being one such) and I can assure you that the taste of each was quite different.

Guinness does a fine job of marketing its brand but the product varies, presumably to meet the varying situations of the different markets.

This is quite different from A-B, of course, whose beer is consistently foul throughout the world but what does vary is its price. Yesterday I had a nice pint of St Austell in the Bag o' Nails in Buckingham Palace Road and was charged a rather expensive 2.65 for it. That was a bargain, though, compared to the price charged for a 330 ml bottle of Budweiser (about half a pint) which was 2.70! A-B very cleverly have managed to position their concoction as a premium product in the UK and, to the eternal shame of my countrymen, so much is sold that it is now the UK's most popular bottled beer!

steveh
06-05-2003, 06:20 AM
Originally posted by Richard English
to the eternal shame of my countrymen, so much is sold that it is now the UK's most popular bottled beer!

Shout it from the steeple tops to the moors, to the valleys and plains - "Life is TOO short to drink BAD BEER!"

Last night I enjoyed a pint (imperial) of Young's Ram Rod - at $2.30 U.S. from the small liquor store around the corner from my home in scenic Northern Illinois - swill be damned, wake up U.K!

S.

Richard English
06-05-2003, 06:57 AM
That's interesting. Over here most bottled beers are now sold in half-litre bottles. This is very slightly more than a US pint but less than 90% of an Imperial pint.

The last time I had an Imperial pint in a bottle was as long ago as yesterday lunchtime, when I was served a bottle of Lion (from Sri Lanka) which is supplied as a 568 ml bottle (and that's exctly an Imperial pint).

I am, as I have said, ashamed of my countrymen. Yesterday in the Bag o' Nails I was drinking at a table that I shared with some visitors from California. The men were drinking good English Ale; my companion was drinking Dudweiser (freudian slip - I'll leave it like that!) with ice. Were it not for the fact that she is a very attractive young lady (and I am an old-fashioned admirer of the distaff side) I would have refused to place the order. As I was I tried hard to persuade her to drink proper Budweiser (on sale alongside the A-B imitation but for less money) but she was adamant!

chazwicke
06-05-2003, 08:32 AM
I am aware of all the varied Guinness products around the world. In the USA I have found the draught on nitro. and the widget cans to be excellent. I have not tried the newer widget bottles. The old bottled product was not as good as the draught or cans. I have enjoyed many a fine pint at BAG O Nails. I usually stay in Victoria at the Grosvener Thistle or at Ruebens across from the palace carriage house. I consider it my "Local" when I am in London. They usually have a good variety of guest brews. I am certain when I am there in August for the GBBF I will make a special trip to Bag o nails one evening even though I will be staying in Kensington. I have also visited the Orange Brewery. What do you think of it Richard? I brought a growler of their beer back on the airplane and it was in a plastic bottle which leaked a little bit.

Richard English
06-05-2003, 08:48 AM
The Bag o' Nails isn't a bad pub but, being where it is, right by Buckingham Palace, it tends to be very popular with tourists and the prices reflect this. I prefer to use the Buckingham which is a tenanted Young's house in Petty France - about five minutes walk from the Bag o' Nails.

The beer's a good bit cheaper and the Landlord looks after it well. It is one of the few pubs that has been in every edition of the Good Beer Guide.

The Orange Brewery disappointed me the last time I was there. It's now owned by one of the Nationals and its future is uncertain.

steveh
06-05-2003, 09:32 AM
Originally posted by Richard English
That's interesting. Over here most bottled beers are now sold in half-litre bottles. This is very slightly more than a US pint but less than 90% of an Imperial pint. > snip <

The men were drinking good English Ale; my companion was drinking Dudweiser (freudian slip - I'll leave it like that!) with ice. Were it not for the fact that she is a very attractive young lady (and I am an old-fashioned admirer of the distaff side) > snip <

I poured the Young's into an imperial pint glass, with a minor head (less than quarter of an inch) it filled the glass. I'll double check the label, though.

Lord - Bud AND ice? Yech! I'll admit, I've seen women drinking Miller Lite over ice here in the States. Of course, I've seen women and men in Germany drinking lager and cola - Diesel, I think they call it? Some locals at a Gasthaus in Wurtzburg got a kick out of the look on my face when they told me what the concoction was!

S.

batkins
06-05-2003, 10:59 AM
Bud and ice? Oh my, they don't even do that in the back woods of Alabama. I feel a headache coming on........

hopjack13
06-05-2003, 11:21 AM
i've never seen any one pour beer over ice. perhaps the cheese slid off her cracker or her chimney is clogged. was she blond?

cyanide
06-05-2003, 11:24 AM
I once put bud over ice because I was desperate for beer and needed it cold. Of course, I fished out the ice once with a slotted spoon once it cooled down. Normally I wouldn't do that to a beer, but this was a Budweiser after all.

mttam510
06-05-2003, 02:41 PM
what the hell? I must say that I was a bit suprised...disgusted more like it....when I walked into many a pub in Dublin and saw Miller banners (lot's of them!), I thought I was back in the states. How the hell could you want to drink that piss? And yes, it was damn near the same price as good ales. Thank goodness that there are good people like us who refuse to buy into the foul marketing ploys of the giant manufacturers of bottled urine!

steveh
06-05-2003, 04:53 PM
Originally posted by mttam510
....when I walked into many a pub in Dublin and saw Miller banners (lot's of them!), I thought I was back in the states. How the hell could you want to drink that piss?

The best I can figure is that it's the same feeling as when you and I first discovered import beer. This is what the Germans drink! It MUST be good! Little did I know that St. Pauly is the red light district of Brehmen - and a St. Pauly Girl is, well...you can follow the thought.

We need to inform (nay, warn!) all of those youngins in the Europe and beyond: Miller, Bud, Coors, et al - just 'cause so many fools over here drink it, don't mean it's good!

S.

b3s
06-05-2003, 05:12 PM
warnings and such won't really work...look at the slick advertising for these beers. these companies invest hundreds of millions of dollars into marketing campaigns.

about the best grassroots level campaign out there to tell people about quality ales is camra...and you can't tell me their budget is even a tenth of what the big three's is.

you would think taste and headaches alone would educate folks, but it doesn't. it truly is amazing.

Richard English
06-06-2003, 01:46 AM
Quote "...about the best grassroots level campaign out there to tell people about quality ales is camra..."

True. And their promotional budget is, I suspect, probably not even a fraction of 1% of A-B's. When did you ever see a CAMRA advertisement?

What they do do, and do it very well, is lobby. Camra is now seen as the main body that speaks for the drinker and this positions has been achieved solely through the hard work and dedication of its members and its officials.

Support Camra by joining it; you owe it to your tastebuds!

cyanide
06-06-2003, 01:48 AM
Face it, not everyone likes good beer. I think they are doing so well in other countries because some people just don't want anything better.

People who like real beer will continue to drink good beer. People in countries that have a history of stronger beer also have a large portion of the population that won't drink beer for that reason.

Kind of like coffee, not everyone likes black coffee or coffee with a little milk in it. People who like that coffee will keep drinking it, people who don't like traditional coffee will drink the fancy creamy sugary ones.

Who knows, the bland beers might help people develop a taste and desire for better beer.

steveh
06-06-2003, 06:48 AM
Originally posted by Richard English
That's interesting. Over here most bottled beers are now sold in half-litre bottles. This is very slightly more than a US pint but less than 90% of an Imperial pint.

Right again Richard, you've made me a liar for 3 (U.S.) ounces! ;)
The Young's bottles are 17 ounces U.S. - Imperials are 20 U.S. ounces, correct? The head I created must have been a bit thicker than a quarter inch, but the bottle still filled the glass better than the 15 ounce Guinness draft cans do!

S.

mttam510
06-06-2003, 12:17 PM
Steveh.....I think that Guinness cans are 14.7 ozs......since we are making sure that we are all correct on measures/amounts. :)

steveh
06-06-2003, 12:42 PM
Just following Ford's lead on their 4.8 liter V-8 Mustang! ;)

S.

Richard English
06-06-2003, 01:06 PM
Almost exactly. 20 US fluid ounces is a fraction more than an Imperial pint (1.041 to be precise!)

mttam510
06-06-2003, 03:04 PM
steveh....that was a good one. ;)

chazwicke
06-06-2003, 05:43 PM
Support Camra by joining it; you owe it to your tastebuds!


__________________
I am a member. I believe in being politically active. Some years ago I lobbied in my state capitol Richmond to change some laws regarding small breweries and we were successful.

Richard English
06-07-2003, 01:50 AM
Are you on the Camra lobbying panel? This exists to write to MPs and others to put the drinkers' point of view on various matters.

This is primarily in the UK; I don't know whether there is a Camra lobbying panel for other countries but if there's not, why not start one?

Jarod
06-11-2003, 03:07 PM
Simply put it is a Ale. But vastly different



Originally posted by jstrausss
I know the Diffrence i na Lager ,and an Ale . what is a stout ?

Thanks John

steveh
06-11-2003, 05:30 PM
Originally posted by Jarod
Simply put it is a Lager. But vastly different

So vastly different that it's closer to an ale.

The beer family tree is split into top fermented beers and bottom fermented beers. Wheats, stouts, porters, and ales are top fermented. Bottom fermented and lager beers are synonymous.

S.

hopjack13
06-11-2003, 07:48 PM
looks like one branch is heavier then the other....
my faverote stouts are the dark ones:D

steveh
06-12-2003, 06:13 AM
Michael Jackson's "New World Guide to Beer," 1988, Page 14, The Family Tree of Beer Styles.

Depends on your definition of heavy, there are a lot of Oktoberfests, Rauchbiers, Dunkels, Dark Bocks, and Strong Lagers on the newer sprout of the tree - and the older limb bears some Wits, Weiss, Berliner Weisse, and Pale Milds - not to mention American Ale and Cream Ale.

The Ale branch of the Top-Fermenting limb is pretty comparable to the Lager Limb - I'll have to see if there's a link to this chart on-line somewhere.

S.

steveh
06-12-2003, 06:19 AM
This version from Sam Adams follows Jackson's pretty closely:
http://www.samadams.com/beer/about/styles_tree.html

hopjack13
06-12-2003, 10:46 PM
wow.....the ale side or top fermenting side is a much bigger family.
the bottom side seems to have less verity.

the moral to the storie:
being on the bottom is okay sometimes, but you have more choices on which way to go from on top!:cool:

steveh
06-13-2003, 07:13 AM
I noticed that the Sam Adam's chart categorizes all top-fermenting beer as ales - a common misconception, and maybe more accepted these days. But Jackson doesn't do that. He places ales in the "family" of top-fermenting beers, along with wheats, stouts, and porters.

If you look at the ale types branch (starting with pale mild) compared with the lagers branch, you can find many comparisons. But you can't really compare lagers and ales to all of the wheat beers, they're vastly different in character and flavor. And, although I've never tried this, drinking a stout side-by-side in comparison with a Munich Dunkel might be very enlightening (aside from being very enjoyable).

The bottom line is to not make a division between top fermenting and bottom fermenting, but to look at the Family Tree as the whole of beer varieties - and marvel at all of the wonderful choices we have!

S.

Theophorus
07-04-2003, 02:49 PM
The best stout I have ever enjoyed is North Coast Brewery's Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout. Hearty, warm, alcohol induced sensation going down, with a wonderfully odd raisiny flavor, accompanied by a fizzy feel on the tongue. Most excellent brew! If you can find it you won't be disappointed.

Theo :-)

Boto
07-10-2003, 06:56 PM
The North Coast Old Rasputin is excellent, but also try Victory Storm King. It is also an exceptional brew. I have only had each a couple of times, but they went straight to the top of my preferred list!

Theophorus
07-10-2003, 09:16 PM
Yes, I like the Victory line of brews as well. I've enjoyed Storm King a few times myself. Have you tried Brooklyn Breweries Black Chocolate Stout. It'll knock your socks off. Comes out around November in limited quantities. Tell your people to order some cases for you!

Your fellow brew lover, Theo :-)

Boto
07-11-2003, 10:06 AM
Yes, I have had the Brooklyn Stout also. Superb!

coopersfanboy
07-15-2003, 08:03 AM
g'day
i'm new here, i'm an australian with a passion for beer(mostly ales but recently i've sampled a few nice lagers) i'm 18 years old. i've just started brewing my own beer (with malt extracts, hops etc) i love english bitters, pale ales, ipa, stouts, south german style wheat beers, amber ale, thats mostly all i've tasted that i've loved, i like pilsener but its just not flavoursome enough for me...
i really hate the way aussies suck so much at drinking beer, we used to be a top drinking nation(in terms of litres drunk) damn wine,
my dream is to somewhat emulate what camra has done for the uk, and also to open a brewery
the few brews i've done have turned out pretty well i think

i love coopers best extra stout
south australian, and excellent

hopjack13
07-15-2003, 08:16 AM
what's the legal drinking age in australia ?

coopersfanboy
07-16-2003, 09:18 AM
18:D

Richard English
07-16-2003, 02:36 PM
Cooper's is arguably the best beer brewed in Australia.

One memorable evening in the Red Ochre restaurant in Cairns I had a pint of each of their several brews (except the low-alcohol one!)

You can get their Sparkling Ale in the UK and it's a pretty fair BCA although not quite as good as the best of the English BCAs. By the standards of most Australian beers, though, (whose awfulness rivals that of A-B's execrable products) Sparkling Ale is ambrosia!

fretlessman71
07-16-2003, 02:47 PM
Welcome coopersfanboy! Feel free to dive right in to the conversation whenever you feel the urge.

coopersfanboy
07-16-2003, 06:37 PM
your hospitality is much aprecciated
has anyone here tasted james squire porter? it isn't available where i live(that i've seen) but its exported to the states. i hear it's a bottom fermented lager wich is a little dissapointing.

in other news Carbine Stout from Castlmaine Brewery in brisbane is very cheap and also very good(although its a lager aswell:( )

what is the go with fake stouts? its a good thing they taste nice

cheers
CFB

skahtboi
08-01-2003, 08:08 PM
Sigh....

I went down to my local specialty beer purveyor's yesterday, and was dismayed to find that one of my favorite, daily drinkable stouts, Murphy's Irish, is now brewed by the notorious Interbrew that Richard has warned us about. Furthermore, it is now only available, here anyway, in those same draught cans that Guinness is now available in. Are all of the "good" brews doomed?

Richard English
08-02-2003, 01:19 AM
So far as I know, Murphy's has always been brewed by Interbrew or its predecessors. It was created (quite recently) to try to break into the mass market for stout, so effectively dominated for years by Guinness.

If you wish to drink good stouts that are not brewed by the mega-keggeries, then stick to those produced by the independents. Young's Chocolate is well-spoken of by US enthusiasts, although I confess I don't find it quite hoppy enough for my taste - strange, because Young's beers are generally well-hopped.

hopjack13
08-07-2003, 01:23 AM
Are all of the "good" brews doomed?

not stone! im a stone junky btw


"Stone Brewing is already rated the #1 best brewer in the country --- and #2 in the world --- by RateBeer.com, the largest beer rating site on the internet," said Stone CEO Greg Koch. "This is proof positive that you can actually brew great beers AND be successful in this country. Quality and integrity in this day and age...who would have thought it would work!"

here's the whole artical

http://www.stonebrew.com/cool/articles/pr/inc500.html

Richard English
08-07-2003, 01:47 AM
Interesting ratings site.

I have to say that I suspect a degree of bias, though. By this I mean that there are clearly more subscribers from certain countries than others. Everyone will be biased simply by what's readily available in his or her own country. For example, I would be unable to rate Dogfish simply because we can't get it in the UK; North Americans would be unable to rate Hop Back for the same reason.

I would never have rated anything from Anchor above anything from Young's, for example - but, if I'd never tried Young's then I might easily have done so since Anchor is a reasonable beer.

hopjack13
08-07-2003, 02:10 AM
i agree as i think most of the raters are american, but i find this site handy when trying out new beers, brew pubs and just pubs in general. or even trying to find a place that serves good beer.
stone has the highest ratings on this site as 9 of their 17 beers scored over four stars. while dogfish head scored only two of their beers with four stars out of about 26.
i trade beer alot and when i want to try something from a brewery i know nothing about , i usually refer to this site and i haven't been disappointed yet .
although llike you say , there is a degree of bias.
however anyone with a computer can submit their own ratings to this site from anywhere at any time.

Richard English
08-07-2003, 02:41 AM
Yes. I agree with you; it's a useful site notwithstanding its bias.

It's also interesting how sites tend still to be used by the natives of the country whose site it is more than foreigners. I have noticed this with the Oxford Bottled Beer Database, which is a UK site but wich rates bottled beers from all over the world. It still gets more UK visitors so far as I can see.

Maybe that will change as the Internet becomes ever more ubiquitous.

steveh
08-07-2003, 10:07 AM
Originally posted by hopjack13
not stone! im a stone junky btw

"Stone Brewing is already rated the #1 best brewer in the country --- and #2 in the world --- by RateBeer.com, the largest beer rating site on the internet," said Stone CEO Greg Koch. "This is proof positive that you can actually brew great beers AND be successful in this country. Quality and integrity in this day and age...who would have thought it would work!"

Waitaminnit - Greg is no relation to *Jim* Koch, is he? I smell something fishy around here...

S.

hopjack13
08-07-2003, 06:05 PM
not jim koch from spam adams do you mean??
well you could call greg , he's a real cool guy, and will actually except your call and b.s. with you, if you call him. i know cuz i have. i reemed him for an april fools joke (the monolith). but he sat and talked with me for a minute, real down to earth guy. i've called the brewery a few times and just about anyone who picks up the phone there will shoot the sh@# with ya.
call and find out and let us know !! i think it's ext 102.
go for it steveh! keep us posted.

hopjack13
08-07-2003, 06:08 PM
I have noticed this with the Oxford Bottled Beer Database, which is a UK site but wich rates bottled beers from all over the world
now don't hold out on us Richard, we want the address;)

steveh
08-08-2003, 01:18 PM
Originally posted by hopjack13
not jim koch from spam adams do you mean??

Yup. That's who I meant! D'ya suppose he'd mind my inferring that the two of them may be long lost brothers?

S.

Richard English
08-08-2003, 01:38 PM
I did post the address once before but for the benefit of those who didn't make a note of it, go to http://www.bottledbeer.co.uk/.

Type in the name of the beer or brewer and you'll get a good critique of most bottled beers.

Of Bud Lite it says (amongst other even less complimentary things) "...A strong session beer for people who don't like beer..." That says it all, I think...