Stone Americano Stout

Total Score: 8.7/10 Coffee1Wood1Chocolate1Tulipglass1

I’m still wondering when Stone will bring out their “Cold-Drip Steve Austin Stout”. Brewers seem to be enamoured to bad puns, dad jokes if you will, and that jest is hilarious and mighty in its craptacularity – it could even be as big and evil as the Chuck Norris meme… just saying. So Americano Stout – no doubt named after one of the worst coffee drink types ever devised [I mean why not just down an espresso instead – the mind boggles!]. Anyway, Americans can be strange in their ways, but Stone are strange in all the ways that are correct – I’m still dreaming about their amazing Xocoveza… if you ever see it: Buy immediately [and send to me]!

Poured from a 355ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: Looks decadently rich in the glass from the off, like an opulent Wall street banker eating BBQ spare-ribs off a naked geisha at a yacht-based orgy. Body has the appearance of an inky black hole with a tasty rich tan head that slowly slips back onto itself like the dying star that it is. 9/10.

S: Dirty cacao nibs, roast espresso, hints of star anise, vanilla and wood fire – this is one American Double Stout you don’t mess with… if indeed you do normally mess with American Double Stouts, if so – you need to give your diabetes a break for a change. The aroma profile is borderline perfect bar one fact: I’m not getting much coffee on the nose here (kinda the opposite of FBS which was like pure-distilled coffee). 8/10.

T: This is a damn fine example of the style! Hits upfront with: Dirty cacao nibs and roast espresso bean, throws in some light citric hop notes (for good measure) then continues with hints of star anise, vanilla and a toasty wood fire char towards the finish. Tasty, toasty and roasty – all great things in a Stout. Aftertaste has a defined espresso coffee roast flavour. Much like the real-life Americano coffee it feels like it would benefit from a bit of full-cream milk – though adding this to a beer is not recommended. 9/10.

M: Medium bodied and oily, with a light but infinitesimally tight carbonation. 8/10.

D: If the brief is what’s written on the bottle label – this brew fulfils the brief. TBH the hop flavours weren’t that noticeable in the heady chaos of my enjoyment of this beer, nor do I care – I feel like this Stout, much like FBS, stands taller without the hops. Anything else? Well it’s no Xocoveza… sure wish they would release Xocoveza again already. 9/10.

Food match: I would drink this for breakfast if I was king, some drunken king.

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Clown Shoes Chocolate Sombrero

Total Score: 7.55/10 Chocolate1BrownSugar1Coffee1Tulipglass1

Tis another review from notes, this is the last of my beer notes awaiting posting on my b(eer)log, and I brew I have yet to see in Australia since: Clown Shoes Chocolate Sombrero. Shame about not finding it again because it was a real hootenanny of a brew – from the silly Mexican wrestler clown on the label right down to how good it tasted, but thems the breaks over here in Australia with highly sought American craft beers: You may only ever see them once. I’ve only managed to get 3 4-packs of my fav IIPA [which I mention in almost EVERY single review] DirtWolf here and there over the last 3yrs. PS: Get more f$&king DirtWolf Australia!

Poured from a 355ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: Opaque brown almost black body with a decent 2 cm tan head that stands up well throughout the review – I’m impressed with this head. Good head*. 9/10.

S: Dark chocolate, cocoa powder and not much else… chocolate lovers need only apply with this brew. At least it does what it says in the name – can’t say that for most Australian beers that say “Pale Ale” on their labels, so there you go. 7/10.

T: Quite sweet upfront, a tad too sweet for my tastes, with bitter cacao/coffee finish. Dark chocolate and cocoa powder start to finish. It’s simple chocolate flavours all the way but it works, although the label does mention ancho chile [Americans can’t spell “chilli” correctly I’ve noticed – it’s a type of pepper not a farking country!], cinnamon and organic vanilla extract – not really getting those flavours – so that’s a small detraction to the score overall. 8/10.

M: Medium bodied with a light carbonation and slightly cloying sweetness as noted above. 7/10.

D: Apart from the almost overbearing sweetness this is a great but simple chocolate stout that fares well without being outstanding. A tasty chocolate treat. Although chilli-lovers (that’s right: “CHILLI” Yanks!) will no doubt be disappointed by the lack of chilli flavour, as will cinnamon and organic vanilla extract lovers† by the lack of those ingredients. 7/10.

Food match: Chocolate lava cake or other chocolate-related goodness.

*That’s what she… ahhh forget it.

†Be there such a thing.

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