We grabbed a can of Guinness Stout and a local #nscraftbeer from Nova Scotia – Garrison Brewing Martello Stout and decided to compare them within the Stout guidelines.
We found it funny that people would stay way from Guinness, thinking that a dark beer would be heavy and strong. But it’s really an easy drinking beer. So we took a taste. While the can said server EXTRA COLD, it was a little too cold. You couldn’t really get a lot of the flavours out. In the end, nice light drinking beer with roasted malt flavour.
Next we poured Garrison Brewing Martello Stout. Being as cold, we found that you could smell more of an aroma. Now, this stout is in closer in the semi-sweet range of the stout family. We tasted more coffee and chocolate. Not as smooth mouthfeel as the Guinness, it presented itself as a better option in our opinion in our setting.
Bitterness Hops – low 2-row pale,roasted barley, chocolate, dark caramel, Munich Hops – Fuggle, Pilgrim IBUs – 25 OG – 1.052 ABV 4.8%
Using the BJCP guidelines (Category 13), let’s take a closer look at what we should be looking for with these two beers we tasted.
13A – Dry Stout
Aroma: Coffee-like roasted barley and roasted malt aromas are prominent; may have slight chocolate, cocoa and/or grainy secondary notes. Hop aroma low to none.
Appearance: Jet black to deep brown. A thick, creamy, long-lasting, tan- to brown-colored head is characteristic.
Flavor: Moderate 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.
Mouthfeel: Medium-light 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.
13B. Sweet Stout
Aroma: Mild roasted grain aroma, sometimes with coffee and/or chocolate notes. Hop aroma low to none.
Appearance: Very dark brown to black in color. Creamy tan to brown head.
Flavor: Dark 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.
Mouthfeel: Medium-full to full-bodied and creamy. Low to moderate carbonation.