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to strong aroma of roasted malts, often having a roasted coffee or dark
chocolate quality. Burnt or charcoal aromas are low to none. Medium to
very low hop aroma, often with a citrusy or resiny American hop
character. Esters are optional, but can be present up to medium
intensity. Light alcohol-derived aromatics are also optional. No
a jet black color, although some may appear very dark brown. Large,
persistent head of light tan to light brown in color. Usually opaque.
to very high roasted malt flavors, often tasting of coffee, roasted
coffee beans, dark or bittersweet chocolate. May have a slightly burnt
coffee ground flavor, but this character should not be prominent if
present. Low to medium malt sweetness, often with rich chocolate or
caramel flavors. Medium to high bitterness. Hop flavor can be low to
high, and generally reflects citrusy or resiny American varieties. Light
esters may be present but are not required. Medium to dry finish,
occasionally with a light burnt quality. Alcohol flavors can be present
up to medium levels, but smooth. No diacetyl.
to full body. Can be somewhat creamy, particularly if a small amount of
oats have been used to enhance mouthfeel. Can have a bit of
roast-derived astringency, but this character should not be excessive.
Medium-high to high carbonation. Light to moderately strong alcohol
warmth, but smooth and not excessively hot.
Overall Impression: A hoppy, bitter, strongly roasted Foreign-style Stout (of the export variety).
express individuality through varying the roasted malt profile, malt
sweetness and flavor, and the amount of finishing hops used. Generally
has bolder roasted malt flavors and hopping than other traditional
stouts (except Imperial Stouts).
American base malts and yeast. Varied use of dark and roasted malts, as
well as caramel-type malts. Adjuncts such as oatmeal may be present in
low quantities. American hop varieties.
Commercial Examples: Sierra
Nevada Stout, North Coast Old No. 38, Avery Out of Bounds Stout, Three
Floyds Black Sun Stout, Mad River Steelhead Extra Stout, Rogue
Shakespeare Stout, Bell's Kalamazoo Stout, Deschutes Obsidian Stout,
Mendocino Black Hawk Stout
grain aromas moderate to high, and can have coffee, chocolate and/or
lightly burnt notes. Fruitiness medium to high. Some versions may have a
sweet aroma, or molasses, licorice, dried fruit, and/or vinous
aromatics. Stronger versions can have the aroma of alcohol. Hop aroma
low to none. Diacetyl low to none.
deep brown to black in color. Clarity usually obscured by deep color
(if not opaque, should be clear). Large tan to brown head with good
versions can be quite sweet, while export versions can be moderately
dry (reflecting impression of a scaled-up version of either sweet stout
or dry stout). Roasted grain and malt character can be moderate to high,
although sharpness of dry stout will not be present in any example.
Tropical versions can have high fruity esters, smooth dark grain
flavors, and moderate bitterness. Export versions tend to have lower
esters, more assertive roast flavors, and higher bitterness. The roasted
flavors of either version may taste of coffee, chocolate, or lightly
burnt grain. Little to no hop flavor. Very low to no diacetyl.
to full body, often with a smooth, creamy character. May give a warming
impression from alcohol presence. Moderate to moderately-high
Overall Impression: A
very dark, moderately strong, roasty ale. Tropical varieties can be
quite sweet, while export versions can be drier and fairly robust.
high-gravity stouts brewed for tropical markets (and hence, sometimes
known as "Tropical Stouts"). Some bottled export (i.e. stronger)
versions of dry or sweet stout also fit this profile. Guinness Foreign
Extra Stout has been made since the early 1800s.
rather broad class of stouts, these can be either fruity and sweet, dry
and bitter, or even tinged with Brettanomyces (e.g., Guinness Foreign
Extra Stout; this type of beer is best entered as a Specialty or
Experimental beer). Think of the style as either a scaled-up dry and/or
sweet stout, or a scaled-down Imperial stout without the late hops.
Highly bitter and hoppy versions are best entered as American-style
to dry or sweet stout, but with more gravity. Pale and dark roasted
malts and grains. Hops mostly for bitterness. May use adjuncts and sugar
to boost gravity. Ale yeast (although some tropical stouts are brewed
with lager yeast).
Commercial Examples: Lion
Stout (Sri Lanka), ABC Stout, Dragon Stout, Royal Extra "The Lion
Stout" (Trinidad), Jamaica Stout, Guinness Extra Stout (bottled US
product), Guinness Foreign Extra Stout (bottled, not sold in the US),
Coopers Best Extra Stout, Freeminer Deep Shaft Stout, Sheaf Stout,
Bell's Double Cream Stout
roasted grain aromas, often with a coffee-like character. A light
sweetness can imply a coffee-and-cream impression. Fruitiness should be
low to medium. Diacetyl medium-low to none. Hop aroma low to none (UK
varieties most common). A light oatmeal aroma is optional.
brown to black in color. Thick, creamy, persistent tan- to
brown-colored head. Can be opaque (if not, it should be clear).
sweet to medium dry palate, with the complexity of oats and dark
roasted grains present. Oats can add a nutty, grainy or earthy flavor.
Dark grains can combine with malt sweetness to give the impression of
milk chocolate or coffee with cream. Medium hop bitterness with the
balance toward malt. Diacetyl medium-low to none. Hop flavor medium-low
to full body, smooth, silky, sometimes an almost oily slickness from
the oatmeal. Creamy. Medium to medium-high carbonation.
Overall Impression: A very dark, full-bodied, roasty, malty ale with a complementary oatmeal flavor.
English seasonal variant of sweet stout that is usually less sweet than
the original, and relies on oatmeal for body and complexity rather than
lactose for body and sweetness.
between sweet and dry stouts in sweetness. Variations exist, from
fairly sweet to quite dry. The level of bitterness also varies, as does
the oatmeal impression. Light use of oatmeal may give a certain
silkiness of body and richness of flavor, while heavy use of oatmeal can
be fairly intense in flavor with an almost oily mouthfeel. When
judging, allow for differences in interpretation.
caramel and dark roasted malts and grains. Oatmeal (5-10%+) used to
enhance fullness of body and complexity of flavor. Hops primarily for
bittering. Ale yeast. Water source should have some carbonate hardness.
Commercial Examples: Samuel
Smith Oatmeal Stout, Young's Oatmeal Stout, Maclay's Oat Malt Stout,
Broughton Kinmount Willie Oatmeal Stout, Anderson Valley Barney Flats
Oatmeal Stout, Goose Island Oatmeal Stout, McAuslan Oatmeal Stout,
McNeill's Oatmeal Stout, Wild Goose Oatmeal Stout
roasted grain aroma, sometimes with coffee and/or chocolate notes. An
impression of cream-like sweetness often exists. Fruitiness can be low
to moderately high. Diacetyl low to none. Hop aroma low to none.
Appearance: Very dark brown to black in color. Can be opaque (if not, it should be clear). Creamy tan to brown head.
roasted grains and malts dominate the flavor as in dry stout, and
provide coffee and/or chocolate flavors. Hop bitterness is moderate
(lower than in dry stout). Medium to high sweetness (often from the
addition of lactose) provides a counterpoint to the roasted character
and hop bitterness, and lasts into the finish. Low to moderate fruity
esters. Diacetyl low to none. The balance between dark grains/malts and
sweetness can vary, from quite sweet to moderately dry and somewhat
to full-bodied and creamy. Low to moderate carbonation. High residual
sweetness from unfermented sugars enhances the full-tasting mouthfeel.
Overall Impression: A very dark, sweet, full-bodied, slightly roasty ale. Often tastes like sweetened espresso.
English style of stout. Historically known as "Milk" or "Cream" stouts,
legally this designation is no longer permitted in England (but is
acceptable elsewhere). The "milk" name is derived from the use of
lactose, or milk sugar, as a sweetener.
are low in England, higher in exported and US products. Variations
exist, with the level of residual sweetness, the intensity of the roast
character, and the balance between the two being the variables most
subject to interpretation.
sweetness in most Sweet Stouts comes from a lower bitterness level than
dry stouts and a high percentage of unfermentable dextrins. Lactose, an
unfermentable sugar, is frequently added to provide additional residual
sweetness. Base of pale malt, and may use roasted barley, black malt,
chocolate malt, crystal malt, and adjuncts such as maize or treacle.
High carbonate water is common.
Commercial Examples: Mackeson's
XXX Stout, Watney's Cream Stout, St. Peter's Cream Stout, Marston's
Oyster Stout, Samuel Adams Cream Stout, Left Hand Milk Stout
roasted barley and roasted malt aromas are prominent; may have slight
chocolate, cocoa and/or grainy secondary notes. Esters medium-low to
none. No diacetyl. Hop aroma low to none.
black to deep brown with garnet highlights in color. Can be opaque (if
not, it should be clear). A thick, creamy, long-lasting, tan- to
brown-colored head is characteristic.
roasted, grainy sharpness, optionally with light to moderate
acidic/sourness, and medium to high hop bitterness. Dry, coffee-like
finish from roasted grains. May have a bittersweet or unsweetened
chocolate character in the palate, lasting into the finish. Balancing
factors may include some creaminess, medium-low to no fruitiness, and
medium to no hop flavor. No diacetyl.
to medium-full body, with a creamy character. Low to moderate
carbonation. For the high hop bitterness and significant proportion of
dark grains present, this beer is remarkably smooth. The perception of
body can be affected by the overall gravity with smaller beers being
lighter in body. May have a light astringency from the roasted grains,
although harshness is undesirable.
Overall Impression: A very dark, roasty, bitter, creamy ale.
History: The style evolved from attempts to capitalize on the success of London porters,
but originally reflected a fuller, creamier, more "stout" body and
strength. When a brewery offered a stout and a porter, the stout was
always the stronger beer (it was originally called a "Stout Porter").
Modern versions are brewed from a lower OG and no longer reflect a higher strength than porters.
is the draught version of what is otherwise known as Irish stout or
Irish dry stout. Bottled versions are typically brewed from a
significantly higher OG and may be
designated as foreign extra stouts (if sufficiently strong). While most
commercial versions rely primarily on roasted barley as the dark grain,
others use chocolate malt, black malt or combinations of the three. The
level of bitterness is somewhat variable, as is the roasted character
and the dryness of the finish; allow for interpretation by brewers.
dryness comes from the use of roasted unmalted barley in addition to
pale malt, moderate to high hop bitterness, and good attenuation. Flaked
unmalted barley may also be used to add creaminess. A small percentage
(perhaps 3%) of soured beer is sometimes added for complexity (generally
by Guinness only). Water typically has moderate carbonate hardness,
although high levels will not give the classic dry finish.
Commercial Examples: Guinness
Draught Stout (also canned), Murphy's Stout, Beamish Stout, O'Hara's
Celtic Stout, Dorothy Goodbody's Wholesome Stout, Orkney Dragonhead
Stout, Brooklyn Dry Stout, Old Dominion Stout, Goose Island Dublin
Stout, Arbor Brewing Faricy Fest Irish Stout
and complex, with variable amounts of roasted grains, maltiness, fruity
esters, hops, and alcohol. The roasted malt character can take on
coffee, dark chocolate, or slightly burnt tones and can be light to
moderately strong. The malt aroma can be subtle to rich and
barleywine-like, depending on the gravity and grain bill. May optionally
show a slight specialty malt character (e.g., caramel), but this should
only add complexity and not dominate. Fruity esters may be low to
moderately strong, and may take on a complex, dark fruit (e.g., plums,
prunes, raisins) character. Hop aroma can be very low to quite
aggressive, and may contain any hop variety. An alcohol character may be
present, but shouldn't be sharp, hot or solventy. Aged versions may
have a slight vinous or port-like quality, but shouldn't be sour. No
diacetyl. The balance can vary with any of the aroma elements taking
center stage. Not all possible aromas described need be present; many
interpretations are possible. Aging affects the intensity, balance and
smoothness of aromatics.
may range from very dark reddish-brown to jet black. Opaque. Deep tan
to dark brown head. Generally has a well-formed head, although head
retention may be low to moderate. High alcohol and viscosity may be
visible in "legs" when beer is swirled in a glass.
deep, complex and frequently quite intense, with variable amounts of
roasted malt/grains, maltiness, fruity esters, hop bitterness and
flavor, and alcohol. Medium to aggressively high bitterness. Medium-low
to high hop flavor (any variety). Moderate to aggressively high roasted
malt/grain flavors can suggest bittersweet or unsweetened chocolate,
cocoa, and/or strong coffee. A slightly burnt grain, burnt currant or
tarry character may be evident. Fruity esters may be low to intense, and
can take on a dark fruit character (raisins, plums, or prunes). Malt
backbone can be balanced and supportive to rich and barleywine-like, and
may optionally show some supporting caramel, bready or toasty flavors.
Alcohol strength should be evident, but not hot, sharp, or solventy. No
diacetyl. The palate and finish can vary from relatively dry to
moderately sweet, usually with some lingering roastiness, hop bitterness
and warming character. The balance and intensity of flavors can be
affected by aging, with some flavors becoming more subdued over time and
some aged, vinous or port-like qualities developing.
to very full-bodied and chewy, with a velvety, luscious texture
(although the body may decline with long conditioning). Gentle smooth
warmth from alcohol should be present and noticeable. Should not be
syrupy and under-attenuated. Carbonation may be low to moderate,
depending on age and conditioning.
Overall Impression: An
intensely flavored, big, dark ale. Roasty, fruity, and bittersweet,
with a noticeable alcohol presence. Dark fruit flavors meld with roasty,
burnt, or almost tar-like sensations. Like a black barleywine with
every dimension of flavor coming into play.
to high gravity and hopping level in England for export to the Baltic
States and Russia. Said to be popular with the Russian Imperial Court.
Today is even more popular with American craft brewers, who have
extended the style with unique American characteristics.
exist, with English and American interpretations (predictably, the
American versions have more bitterness, roasted character, and finishing
hops, while the English varieties reflect a more complex specialty malt
character and a more forward ester profile). The wide range of
allowable characteristics allow for maximum brewer creativity.
pale malt, with generous quantities of roasted malts and/or grain. May
have a complex grain bill using virtually any variety of malt. Any type
of hops may be used. Alkaline water balances the abundance of acidic
roasted grain in the grist. American or English ale yeast.
Commercial Examples: Samuel
Smith Imperial Stout, Courage Imperial Stout, Brooklyn Black Chocolate
Stout, Rogue Imperial Stout, North Coast Old Rasputin Imperial Stout,
Victory Storm King, Bell's Expedition Stout, Dogfish Head World Wide
Stout, Thirsty Dog Siberian Night, Stone Imperial Stout, Avery The Czar,
Founders Imperial Stout, Newport Beach John Wayne Imperial Stout, Great
Lakes Blackout Stout
DOWNLOAD THE DRY STOUT BEER STYLE GUIDE FROM BYO WRITTEN BY JAMIL ZAINASHEFF
DRY STOUT STYLE GUIDE