Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Tasting Notes: Milk Stout

Here are some tasting notes for my version of the 1952 Mackeson's Milk Stout recipe posted at Shut Up About Barclay Perkins. The beer finished at 1.017, giving it an ABV of 3%.

Appearance: Dark brown colour, changes to a clear, red-tinged brown when held up to the light.  Lingering head right to the end makes for a pretty pint.

Smell: Toast, cocoa, and a bit of hop spiciness. Bit of tobacco as it warms up. Very pleasant.

Taste: More toast/breadcrust, with some chocolatey notes.  Light fruitiness as it gets warmer.  There's a lingering taste that reminds me of cheap cola-flavoured popsicles I used to buy when I was a kid.  Not at all sweet.

Mouthfeel: Although the beer isn't sweet, it does have a nice fullness to it, especially given its low ABV. Carbonation is a touch too high, which is somewhat biting and detracts from the smoothness.

Drinkability & Notes: I have to say, I'm surprised by how much I like this beer---much more than most milk stouts I've tried.  I think its because its not particularly sweet, despite being more full-bodied than most bitters or milds I make in this ABV range---the bitterness, toast, and chocolate notes all make it very moreish, and the flavours become more developed as it warms up.  With most milk stouts I can imagine drinking (and genuinely enjoying) about half a pint, but this is a beer I could easily drink for a few hours.  The slightly-too-high carbonation detracts from it a little (though its still very low compared to most beers)---I imagine it would be even better served via a hand-pump.

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