1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Old #38 Stout - North Coast Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Old #38 StoutOld #38 Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

1,038 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,038
Reviews: 627
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 11.23%
Wants: 36
Gots: 23 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Irish Dry Stout |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 10-18-2001)
View: Beers (23) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old #38 Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,038 | Reviews: 627 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of barefootbrewer
barefootbrewer

Mississippi

3.98/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a black color with a 1” head. The smell is sweet and a somewhat floral. The taste is roasted, caramel, malty and the hops were noticeable. The mouthfeel is medium to full. Overall, this is a tasty brew that seems to go down easy – I swear I just had a full glass here!

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2007 14:16:31 | More by barefootbrewer
Photo of Atron67
Atron67

Wisconsin

4.08/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- poured a black that was slightly brown around the thinner areas, had a foamy tannish head, which left pretty heavy lacing
S- sweet/ish maltyness, notes of roasted also are present, coffee is also present,
T- Pretty good, not my favorite but good, has a slightly sweet flavor that finishs with a dry roasted flavor smooth, pretty clean,
M- medium/heavy body, mild/medium carbonation which provides a little acidity on the tongue when tasting,
d- this is a pretty good stout, and one i would be able to drink a couple of in a night, tasty and a nice ild coffee and roasted flavors make it a nice mild flavored stout

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2007 23:18:54 | More by Atron67
Photo of pmcadamis
pmcadamis

Illinois

4.55/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Perfectly black brew with a creamy and frothy two finger light brown head that leaves lots of creamy lace on the glass. The head never settles below a tight cap, and a swirl brings back a full two fingers. This is a very appetizing appearance!

S - The first thing I smell is cold coffee with lots of creamer, followed by some bitter dark baking chocolate and some smoldering campfire notes. Smells great, but it could be a bit more assertive.

T - Sweet creamy coffee with dark baker's chocolate...very much a continuation of the nose. Initially sweet before becoming more roasty and coffee-like mid sip, then finishing with some dark roast bitterness and a good dose of leafy hops. Outstanding.

M - Creamy and lush, with some tingly carbonation and a relatively light body. At first I didn't see why this was under Irish Dry Stouts instead of just plain old American Stouts, but now I see...the body is very creamy, light, and similar to the big three.

D - Flawless. I could session with this on a hot day, or sip it slowly from a snifter in the winter. This is a remarkable brew that IMO is highly underrated.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2007 17:41:25 | More by pmcadamis
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a jet black color with a foamy, tan, three finger head. It left small traces of lace.

S - It smelled of coffee, oatmeal, toasty malt and nuts.

T - It tasted of oatmeal, roasted malt and a burnt toastiness.

M - It was dry and sharp. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a really good stout, although it seems more like an Oatmeal Stout than an Irish Dry. Still it was very good.

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2007 17:23:32 | More by zeff80
Photo of GimpyCane
GimpyCane

Florida

4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This stout was a nice surprise. Poured dark brown with a caramel hue shinning through that left a fizzy one finger tan head. The head didn't stick around for long. The true enjoyment is in the aroma. Upon pouring a blast of roasted grain, molasses and caramel hit my nose. Followed by dates, cola and licorice that ended with a hint of smoke and dark plum. This light to medium body brew started off with a roasted and smokey malt that was mask by a sweet cola and date middle. A moderate coffee bitter such as espresso was left lingering on the palate. Another plus, you can drink this all night and really enough it. Really good beer by North Coast. I paired this brew up with homemade Cherry cola BBQ sauce and baby back ribs, green apple cole slaw and roasted garlic potato salad. Enjoy

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2007 01:42:14 | More by GimpyCane
Photo of EStreet20
EStreet20

New Jersey

4.15/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, shaker pint glass.

A - Pours out a nearly black color. Shows some red when held to the light. Nice tan head.

S - Some nice cocoas and coffee in there.

T - Nice. A huge roasty character on top of the chocolate flavors. Bitterness comes through in the aftertaste, along with a smoky flavor.

M - Nice and full while still maintaining a playful carbonation.

D - Makes me want more and more. Very complex for a dry stout.

Notes: Another winner from North Coast. Really blows the "Big 3" nitro'ed stouts out of the water flavorwise. Excellent brew overall.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2007 23:24:17 | More by EStreet20
Photo of scott
scott

Ohio

4.63/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

unknown vintage

Dark amber, thin, and little-to-no head.
A real robust aroma, with a little alcohol to note. (And some other ingredient I can't put my finger on.)
This is very tasty, with roast and chocolate being cut through with a knife wielding hop. Dry, crisp, refreshing and very exacting. Medium bodied with a fair amount of carbonation. Well crafted and very easy to drink. So much so, that I will have another. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

06-26-2007 04:46:19 | More by scott
Photo of udubdawg
udubdawg

Kansas

3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish dark brown. Color is a little lighter than my fuzzy memory thought it would be. Head is light brown and has decent retention, leaving attractive spotty lace.

Roasty aromas here, full of coffee and chocolate as well, and a little alcohol. Nothing spectacular, but pleasant.

Tasty. Bitterness isn't huge, but significantly more than expected and a pleasant surprise. Coffee that is evenly blended into the aroma comes out more strongly here. A very faint residual sweetness. I dig it.

Body is slightly on the light side of medium and appropriate for the style. Crisp up front, creamy in the finish - Nice.

Highly drinkable. I've had better but considering the lack of quality Irish Dry Stouts available locally, sign me up. I'd take this over Guinness any day. And I hear North Coast WILL finally be available locally within the month!

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2007 02:35:11 | More by udubdawg
Photo of KroMagnon
KroMagnon

Tennessee

4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice rocky head, steady and full and fluffy, tan atop a dark dark nearly opaque beer with a ruby overtone. The aroma is nice too, a lot of chocolate and nuttiness along with a soft caramel and toffee note. The flavor is good too, maybe not as dry as I'd expect for an "Irish Dry Stout" but that's a good thing - I get a lot of malt at first, then a slight acrid bitterness and coffee / roasted note, then finally a little dash of bitterness at the end that compliments the beer. This isn't a huge beer, but it is a rather nicely made brew with a good combination of ingredients and flavors.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2007 01:59:15 | More by KroMagnon
Photo of froggyfrog
froggyfrog

Pennsylvania

4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A dark syrupy cocoa-like aroma is noticeable right away upon removing the cap. The pour results in a snifter bowl full of inky black liquid and a short-lived fluffy head. More from the nose: varied grains, Cocoa Krispies, chocolate truffle, and floral hops.

Fuller mouthfeel than anticipated with a puckering dry finish. Some lactose-type qualities evident. Taste is prickly pear and cocoa powder. Some milkiness in the middle with a evergreen hop finish. Hints of nutmeg mixed in. Caramel?

The hop flavors and fruitiness of this dry stout make for an interesting take on what is often a roasted-malt-driven style.

Really a nice beer. If it wasn't for the last-minute dry finish I might mistake this for a sweet stout.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2007 02:53:04 | More by froggyfrog
Photo of mountdew1
mountdew1

New Hampshire

3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass. Poured a nice very dark reddish brown with a reasonable bubbly head that quickly disappeared. It left slight lacing around the glass that lasted the whole beer. Aroma was very pleasant, smelled of chocolate mousse. Taste varied, started off with hints of coffee, later on was slighty sweet with chocolate undertones. No bitterness at all in the mouth flavorwise, however the beer felt slightly acidic on the tounge which detracted from the flavor. Was easy to drink except for that acidity. A solid stout.

Serving type: bottle

05-08-2007 22:53:38 | More by mountdew1
Photo of karengarys
karengarys

Indiana

3.63/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours transparent black, leaving little very fluffy light carmel color head which sticks to the glass a lot retaining a fluffy foam ring.

Smells malty and hoppy dry.

Tastes stout dry, some cool malts, and a hoppy balance I would never get in a Guiness. It is very good!

Mouthfeel is quite creamy.

Finish is also dry, creamy and clean, but there is a bit of a edgy pine hop bitter bite I'm not particularly fond of.

This is a quite drinkable brew that is worth trying. If you see it, don't pass it up!

Serving type: bottle

05-05-2007 03:08:22 | More by karengarys
Photo of MmmIPA
MmmIPA

Pennsylvania

3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark black body with some ruby highlights towards the bottem.Nice fluffy off white head.Nice lacing on the glass.

I smell oatmeal, or some sort of flaked oats.It dont smell like roasted malts.The smell is very inviting.

Oatmeal taste with some fruit notes.I like the fruity taste to it.You can taste the roasted malts in the aftertaste.

Mouthful is a bit thick and the carbonation is a notch up from your standard stout.

If Guiness tasted like this,I would drink guiness.This is a damn tasty beer and I think my first of the style.I had a SlyFox dry stout and it wasnt near tasty as this.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2007 14:28:59 | More by MmmIPA
Photo of BobThomas
BobThomas

Connecticut

3.18/5  rDev -17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Plan B, West Hartford, CT.

Served in a pint glass. Black with a very thick and creamy head that's sticking a quarter inch out of the top of the glass and isn't going anywhere.

Smells of bittersweet chocolate and coffee. Nothing too intersting.

Taste is more of the same, not too intersting.

I'd dink it again if it were given to me, but I regret not getting North Coast's Old Rasputin from the bottle (which was also on the menu) instead of this one which was of course on tap. Oh well.

Serving type: on-tap

04-23-2007 19:41:50 | More by BobThomas
Photo of IntriqKen
IntriqKen

California

4.5/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I just finished a Guinness Draught which I always find enjoyable (I like the nitro as well) and wanted to compare it directly to something else. I understand this is the same brew that North Coast makes for Trader Joe's under the name Black Hart Stout...it is at least very similar if not indeed the same.

Pours a decent deep black with a very impressive creamy head that melts to very sticky lacing.

Aromas are definite espresso coffees and dark chocolate with roasted dark malts.

Taste is full of chocolate that melts to a bit of dark coffee then back to dark chocolate, finally finishing with a crisp hop bite making this very refreshing.

A great irish stout from North Coast.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2007 02:54:41 | More by IntriqKen
Photo of tobyandgina
tobyandgina

Nevada

4.55/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up this dusty sixer at a local liquor store.

Nice head when poured. Good lacing throughout.

Smell was chocolatey, some espresso and even a little hoppy.

Great mouthfeel, lingers for just the right amount of time.

Taste of burnt chocolate and coffee beans. A good deal of malt too.
A great bite to it with some smoothness to compliment.

A wonderful Stout from our friends at North Coast. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2007 02:32:40 | More by tobyandgina
Photo of bashiba
bashiba

Iowa

2.58/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured a clear dark brown with light amber highlights and a thick and sticky tan head.

Has a light and sweet and roasty malt odor.

Has a very acidic and bitter taste with some hints of smoke and cocoa.

Finishes dry with a cloying bitterness.

Not very good, a real let down as the first North Coast Beer I did not really like.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2007 04:42:19 | More by bashiba
Photo of Gatch
Gatch

Massachusetts

4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pretty dark, but not pitch black. A light, creamy tan head. I like how it has the taste of a really dark beer but is relatively light in color for a Stout.
S - Roasted malt, dark chocolate.
T - I like this a lot. I expected something different since I've never really had an Irish Dry Stout besides Guinness. It seems to taste in between a Porter and an American Stout. The roasted, sweet malt & light hints of dark bitter chocolate create a very smooth and enjoyable Stout, with a surprisingly good, dry finish.
M - Nice carbonation, but the body's a little too thin at first. Once it warmed up, that faded away as well as the watered down taste like some Porters can have. It has a smoky, dry, smooth & creamy feel.
D - Very drinkable for a Stout. A unique style for North Coast to brew and they brewed a great beer. None of the flavors are overwhelming, they blend well and leave a great taste in the mouth. I'd love to have another if I could, and if it was at a bar, I'd feel it necessary to order a second pint.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2007 07:49:26 | More by Gatch
Photo of tapman
tapman

Illinois

3.7/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

In a world were nitro-metallic Guiness is now a household name, Old No. 38 tries to bring the flavor. It gets a "5" for effort, but as for what really counts...

Pours a smooth dark brazilian rosewood color with a creamy, tan head that dissipates after a minute and a half or so. The aroma is unfortunately faint, but after almost inhaling a nostrilfull of foam, a sweet, musty smell becomes apparent...bready.

On the sides of the tongue our salt receptors receive flavors of chocolate and buttery hops. The presence of a decent roasted malt follows the beer down the throat, leaving behind a melbatoast aftertaste. I know what you're thinking, but that's actually not a bad thing. The brew is sweet/bitter thanks to the extra sugar/alcohol with a 5.6% ABV being respectable amoung modern IDS brews.

Medium describes the mouthfeel of this beer. The carbonation is noticeably present, but not overpowering and doesn't cover up too much, thankfully.

The second serving went down even smoother I am surprised to say. With the first serving we find that a combonation of acidic flavors (chocolate, bitter, sweet) impacting an unprepared palate acts like an icy hot patch. At first there is a wincing intensity followed by warm chocolatey blandness. I did have one more that evening and that was enough for one night. Perhpas I grade this brew to harshly, but the standards of beer must be raised. I find this to be a very respectable product in that I could taste all that I was able to, the good and the bad. Thanks for not following the nitro-heads and being yourself. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2007 04:21:59 | More by tapman
Photo of hammer09
hammer09

Illinois

4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep brown with a thick (>2") foamy head. Although the head dissipates fairly quickly, lacing is thick and clumpy. Smell is malty with hints of chocolate. Not much of a roasted aroma however. Taste is excellent. The roasted malt is balanced by a nice, smokey flavor and mild, lingering bitterness. Mouthfeel is typical for this style; dry, smooth, and creamy. Overall, this is a highly drinkable brew that won't disappoint.

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2007 11:29:29 | More by hammer09
Photo of stereosforgeeks
stereosforgeeks

Virginia

3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Black with some brown highlights. 3 finger head. Light retention and no lacing.

Smell: Notes of dark roasted malts, chocolate, caramel, and coffee.

Taste: A nice roasted chocolate and caramel taste initially. Toffee and nuts follow. Lastly you have some mint in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, dry, and rich.

Drinkability: Tasty and easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2007 06:12:05 | More by stereosforgeeks
Photo of BurnsTau
BurnsTau

Alabama

3.05/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours black, nice tan head.

Smells of roasted malts, and chocolates. Taste is up front malty, slight chocolaty taste, coffee, usual stout stuff. I would like a bit more flavor in my stouts. Mouthfeel was slightly thinner than I would like and the beer was a bit watery.

This beer is just about average, nothing really great but at least solid and drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2007 01:16:28 | More by BurnsTau
Photo of stephendr
stephendr

California

3.45/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle- color of dark coffee , with a reasonable tan head - nose of mint chocolate chips , chili pepper?? , malts , and roasted note – taste of bittersweet chocolate , baking chocolate , and malty – body is creamy , and smooth balanced with some acidity– aftertaste of milk chocolate , and bitter chocolate

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2007 06:06:59 | More by stephendr
Photo of Hampton73
Hampton73

Georgia

4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown with a one finger tan head. Red color shines when held to the light.

Aroma is dark malty chocolate and coffee with English noble hops in the nose.

The flavor is dark roasted barley and coffee with a dry finish.

The flavor and aroma are more English or Irish than they are American, but it has the intensity of the American microbrew.

This is one of my favorite stouts.

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2007 02:51:48 | More by Hampton73
Photo of vwcraig
vwcraig

Pennsylvania

3.65/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a very deep ruby/mahogany that you can barely see through if held up to bright light. Thinnest ring of small bubbles left around edge of glass. Not very big on smells. Can smell roasted malts but also a sweeter possibly caramel malts. Small coffee smell in there as well. Bitter coffee taste along with some dark chocolate. Roasted malts make up big part of taste as expected. Mouthfeel was on watery side like a Guiness and had little carbonation. Drinkability is average. Would pick this up if tired of Guiness as part of a mixed sixer, but would not buy an entire 6 of this.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2007 18:11:12 | More by vwcraig
Old #38 Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 1,038 ratings.