“Brewed with well water (the original well, sunk in 1758, is still in use with the hard water is drawn from 85 feet underground), the gently roasted organic chocolate malt and organic cocoa impart a delicious, smooth and creamy character, with inviting deep flavours and a delightful finish – this is the perfect marriage of satisfying stout and luxurious chocolate.” 5.0% ABV
Poured from a 18.7 oz bottle into my Samuel Smith tulip glass. Nearly completely black, with just a little bit of ruby-red coming through around the edges. A thin, brownish tan head is bubbly and creamy looking, and dissipates to just barely cover the beer. Ample lacing is left on the glass.
Sweet milk-chocolate malts dominate, with undertones of light vanilla and a hint of hops.
The mouth feel is relatively rich and smooth, with a bit of hop bitterness on the back end. The flavor is lightly sweet chocolate malt mixed with a tangy lactose/vanilla taste. There are also some bitter burnt hops that come through at the end. The aftertaste that coats the palate is kind of like a chocolate wafer/cracker flavor.
I was a little disappointed in this beer, as many chocolate stouts I’ve had are better in comparison. There is more chocolate in the nose than the taste, as the vanilla/lactose flavors are fighting (and winning) to be the main flavor. More chocolate and less of the other flavors would make this beer a little better. That isn’t to say that this is a bad beer, just more in the “meh” range. Not undrinkable, but I don’t think I’ll get this one again. 6/10.
Samuel Smith Old Brewery – Tadcaster, North Yorkshire, UK