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What is a stout beer?
If someone buys stout beer, you’re probably envisioning a dark beer with a creamy head. An Irish Guinness is typically the first thing that comes to mind. What makes a stout is flavor based, however, and not visual presentation based. A stout beer is one that has a rich, robust flavor. This is due to the roasting of Barley during the brewing cycle. In a stout, the barley is highly roasted in a kiln before it is malted.
What are the types of stout beer?
Unsurprisingly, there are many types of stout to choose from. While you may be best familiar with an Irish stout, think: Guinness, it’s far from the only option. Before buying stout beers online, check this out:
More than just Guinness, this style is summarized by a low ABV rate of just 3.5-5.5%. They are medium bodied and easily drinkable.
The sweet stout, a milk stout contains more unfermented sugars, making it sweeter on the tongue. True to the name, some contain lactose and milk sugars.
Some people say stouts are great for breakfast, thanks in part to their thick, creamy texture. If that’s true, then an oatmeal stout is the way to go. Brewed with oatmeal for an even richer, fuller texture, these brews carry a note of sweetness and an ABV of up to 7%.
Russian (Imperial) Stout
Originally brewed for the court of Catherine II of Russia, these stouts carry the highest APB of all stouts. Some brews can get all the way up to 11%! Since these brews had to survive long shipping times, they were loaded with hops. That means the flavor can be bitter, but often has hints of fruitiness as well.
How do you serve a stout beer?
Yes, there is a right way and a wrong way to serve a stout. The big thing to know is that you want close to a full inch of foam, or head, on top. It traps the aroma of the roasted barley inside of the brew, and that heightens your reception to the overall flavor. The other thing to know is that stouts are best served … warm? That’s right. While a typical American lager is best served just about freezing, stouts do best significantly warmer. Think 55-60 degrees!