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Old #38 Stout - North Coast Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Old #38 StoutOld #38 Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

647 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 647
Hads: 1,204
Avg: 3.83
pDev: 14.88%
Wants: 52
Gots: 65 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Irish Dry Stout |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 10-18-2001

53 IBUs
View: Beers (28) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old #38 Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 647 | Hads: 1,204
Photo of bigdeuce
4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Scents of plums and chocolate on the nose. Nice, outrageously, huge 3 finger head. Dark as a good stout should be. Many complex flavors, including chocolate, coffee, and hazelnuts. A classic American made stout. Goes down so smoothly, low bitterness, and it makes you want the next sip. Great session beer and I am probably a bit biased because this was one of my first micro-brewed stouts and I'm glad to be reunited with it!

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Photo of UnionMade
4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a transparent dark brown, pretty much black, with red highlights through light. A thick beige foam tops the liquid, settling into a well maintained dense mist. Plenty of sticky lace clings to the glass.
The aroma is mainly a rich roasty chocolate malt. A distinct graininess, like pure, freshly cracked chocolate malt. Some woody yeast, with heaps of dark roasted fresh coffee. Very light date and fig esters, with faint herbal hops, providing a perfect balance to the bittersweet malt.
The flavor starts with solid chocolate malt up front, slightly burnt, filling the mouth with burnt maltiness immediately. Slightly grainy, adding a bit of husky coarseness, with some dark-roast coffee and a touch of hazelnut. A faint figgy fruitiness eases through, traveling into a mild herbal hopping into the finish. A bit of earthy woodiness and powdery yeast, finishing the beer with impressive dryness. Medium bodied, with a robust, slightly powdery mouthfeel supported by mild, easy-going carbonation.
Probably my favorite beer so far from these folks. Very, very drinkable, with solid, robust flavor. Excellent malt flavor, with a very drinkable grainy chocolate malt unmistakability. One of my top stouts.

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Photo of SilentSabre
4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very, very glad I tried this. It poured a nice dark reddish brown, not quite black, with a very pretty, slightly pitted, khaki coloured head that satyed around for several minutes. Definately looked better than average. Smell is dry roasted grain and fresh brewed coffee. Nice. Taste is very dry. Burnt malt up front with a subtle bitter finish; dry all the way through. Mouthfeel was excellent for the style, I thought. This would make a perfect session stout. I'm quite impressed with this one. Another winner from North Coast.

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Photo of PerzentRizen
4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I have to say what everyone is thinking. This beer is Old Rasputin's little brother. I mean every flavor is there from the prune to the hop bite to the malt to the sweet finish. I really enjoyed this beer. My only regret was that I was too stupid to buy a four pack of this when I was told to by the Beer guy in Columbus, GA. I was really dumb. He gave me 1 as a freebie, but I think he knew it would just taunt me. Kinda like a "I told you so." Bastard!

Anyways, I poured this one into a brandy snifter but a pint glass would work great. I think this beer could be drank at any temp from 45 - 62 without a problem. It all depends on what you prefer to taste. More great bitter hop go higher more sweet malty goodness go colder. This was a great (almost) find. Do yourself a favor go get 4 of these tonight!

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Photo of barnzy78
4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. Poured fairly thick and was near-black in color. Tan head was fluffy and not quick to dissipate. Initial aroma was a waft of sweet cocoa and roasted malts, pleasant to the nose. Mouth-feel was decent with an apparent dryness, which was acceptable for the style. Flavors were roasted malts and dark chocolate with a balanced hop character - the finish seemed to be more bitter chocolate rather than bitter hops, which again was very pleasant. Overall a great interpretation of a dry stout - obviously different than an average Guinness, but very enjoyable.

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Photo of bluemoonswoon
4.23/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12oz stubby poured into a nonic pint glass, no freshness date.

A: Pours pure black two inches of tan tightly packed bubbly rocky and creamy head the really looks inviting. None of that cascading you get from a Guiness but this wasn't a nitro so whatever. Good lacing down the glass

S: Smells like a Guiness but better, seems sweeter and toastier.

T/MF: Really toasty and roasty with a decent hop kick that does not overpower the toasted malt flavors, really nicely balanced, not too sweet and not too bitter. The hops keep the beer from tasting too watery and imparts a slight fruity taste on the beer then fades away and lets the malts take controll to the finish.

D: Like it better than Guiness, doesn't have that flat taste like the other does, really lets me know I'm drinking a beer.

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Photo of hammer09
4.24/5  rDev +10.7%
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.

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Photo of jminsc76
4.24/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a big creamy head that's a slightly light espresso brown atop an almost impenetrable dark, reddish body. Thick, creamy lacing spiraling down the side. Great visuals, and the carbonation of the head reforms quickly upon agitation.

Sweetly intense aromas of caramel and candy. A light smell but the bouquet definitely lifts the nose to high heaven. I could breathe this one all day.

The taste is not as intense as the aromas; a bit mellower. A lot of light, roasted malty flavors. A sip yields slightly bitter, coffee flavors with a little figs and spiciness to provide a nice refinement. Reminds me of a good, refreshing Baltic Porter. Again the flavors don't match the intensity of the overall aroma, which is stellar, but this is a highly session-able beer with a full mouthfeel and high drinkability that I enjoyed even more upon a second helping.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A very solid offering from an amazing brewery, the old no. 38 is a classic sweet stout that I am fortunate to have access to. This beer pours a very dark ruby amber tone that looks black almost opaque with a mohogany colored billowing two finger width head. Looks amazing, but it's nothing compared to the smell of this well done stout, with the dark fragrant roasts and strong coffee esque aroma just wonderful. The taste is also a great part of this beer very refined with hints of espresso and notes of dark chocolate the dark roasted barley fills this beer with slight burnt finish that is pleasant when matched with the other flavors going on. Well made with medium to heavy body and a full creamy mouthfeel to each sip makes this one a winner. I could drink this stout any day any time any place. Muy bueno!!!

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Photo of pbrian
4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice tan head, good lacing. Roasted coffee, cocoa aromas. Slight nuttiness mixed in to a predominantly coffee flavored brew. Lasting dry, bitter finish. I really enjoyed this full-bodied, flavorful stout.

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Photo of cpetrone84
4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-cola brown colored beer, quite dark cola, with hues of red shining through. The head is a dark khaki color that is relatively tight and thick looking. The retention is pretty solid and the lace is very good

S-the nose is quite strong and very nice. Ample dark chocolate blesses the nose first. Hints of slightly burnt roasted coffee lie underneath. A touch of roasted barley come in towards the back with a faint sweet dark berry presence.

T-this is quite tasty. Dark chocolate and roasted coffee meet together up front. The roasted barley is slighty present in the middle just enough to let you know it is there. The dark fruits are again faint; but make a definite appearance in the back and actually linger throughout the finish.

D-this is medium bodied, very smooth and has just a hint of creaminess. Its actually a little wet thoughout and just has a hint of dryness at the finish. The carbonation is nice and low but enough to hold together throughout and finish with body.

M-this is a very tasty stout! Big bold flavors and enough of a body to let you know it's a stout. Nice array of flavors, nothing crazy but a very good irish stout.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
4.26/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Nitro tap.

Appearance : creamy, Guinness-like head, 1 finger and pinkish white. The body is beautiful from the nitro, cascading down like a waterfall. Mostly opaque, 95% probably. Dark brown to black. (The head stays throughout the tasting)

Aroma : A weak aroma, but I can detect cocoa, oat, some spiced hop. Maybe some cured wood there too.

Taste : roasted malt and hops play a polite game of tag, adding in roasted caramel and cocoa powder. Slight woody notes also accompany. Cocoa plant, and hop is so polite. It ends only a pinch hoppy. Good. Good. Good.

Mouthfeel : OMG. Smooth as a good shit. Forgive me I'm kinda plastered. I'm sure that has something to do with the nitro, but it is so creamy, it's like a dessert. It ends slightly roasted and dry.

Overall : What a beer. Better than Guinness. I gotta buy me a nitro keg. Damn.

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Photo of BeerWithMike
4.26/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled back on 9/15/13. Chilled down to 36 degrees in my beer cooler and poured in a pilsner glass. Pours a nearly black in color with with a good 3+-finger tan head that lasts awhile. Lots of lacing is seen with each sip. The aroma is of roasted malt, espresso and chocolate. Perfect carbonation. When first sipped the taste of bittersweet chocolate is apparent and on the dry side. Very taste and smooth though and goes down very easy. No harsh aftertaste. Overall, a good stout.

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Photo of Oakenator
4.27/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown to black in appearance. Strong two finger head on pour but lighter in color than expected - ivory - for this dark of a beer. Mouthfeel is decent but watery towards the end. Smell is powerful - strong bold coffee with a hint of mocha. Taste is sweet forward but a dry finish. Another great borderline sessionable stout.

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Photo of CHL
4.27/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark, sweet-smelling malty beer with a bit of alcohol noticeable, light hops as the beer warms. I actually favor this sort of profile in a dark beer.

The taste is quite sweet-biased for a stout, which is what I look for. It's roasted, bitter, and sweet like molasses, then smoky. Strong coffee flavor to begin with, which becomes more complex and satisfying as the beer warms, bringing out some hops.

I wish it was a little thicker, but it is creamy and feels refreshing and crisp going down. Quite drinkable for a dark beer.

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Photo of Tupperwolf
4.27/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Old Rasputin is my number one undisputed favorite beer that I've tried yet; It does everything right. I've found that getting one's hopes up is often a bad idea when drinking beer, so I go in to Old Number 38 with only curiosity. It's an Irish Dry, so it should be noticeably different in flavor profile.

The beer pours a nice licorice black; Ruby highlights are definitely evident when in any kind of direct light, and it's capped with a foamy tan head of about an inch which has great retention and leaves behind intricate wisps of lace.

The smell of the beer, properly adjusted to the right temperature, is huge and full. Lots of nice dry stout qualities here, including that elusive combination of fruitiness and roastiness. There are some dark cherries in the nose, with coffee and toffee roastiness.

The flavor carries some qualities of Old Rasputin - mostly the hops. This is quite a malty beer, with a very different flavor in the malts - a fruity, lightly roasted chocolate and toffee flavor - but I think the hops are what tie the two together. They come and go in a flash, but serve as a roasty, bittersweet reminder of Old Raspy.

The mouthfeel is full, smooth, and fulfilling! Just the right weight, body, and carbonation. It does indeed finish dry, which is refreshing.

A great example of an Irish Dry Stout! North Coast continues to impress me with every beer of theirs I try.

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Photo of afordney
4.27/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark, almost black with a bit of reddish hue. two finger head collapsed to about one, a good thick lacing around the glass. it's got a little carbonation bubble to it.

smells sweet, great balance, coffee pulls through strongly, very inviting.

coffee jumps out at the start, a sweet bitterness follows, this is a heavy beer with a rich flavor.

good combination of bitterness, sweetness and carbonation, also kind of syrupy

a good stout, it'll warm you up on a cold day, great beer.

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Photo of Shrews629
4.27/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Very dark brownish/black color with a few deep ruby highlights when held toward the light. Thick tan head. Creamy and full. The retention wasn't exceptionally long, but it hung around for a few minutes then settled to a nice film. Pretty good lacing also.

Smell - Roastiness comes forth first in the nose. Getting a type of dark fruitiness. Like a deep cherry or a deep, dark plum. Picking up some hints of coffee and dark chocolate.

Taste - The taste mimics the smell very well. The roasted malt and dark fruit is present, but I also found a mint-chocolate chip ice cream sort of flavor. It was subtle, but there. Could just be me. It wasn't unpleasant. Kind of interesting.

Mouthfeel - Medium mouthfeel. Nice and smooth. Creamy. Bountiful amounts of flavor left on the palate. Dry and delicate. Goes down way too easy. I like it.

Drinkability - This is a very sound and agreeable Stout. Perfect for those cold Winter nights. It's a session beer for me. I would love to pick this up again. I want another one. Goes down easy and is not overly filling. A very, very, very nice beer. Cheers.

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Photo of DogFood11
4.28/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Anytime I see an offering from North Coast I haven't sampled its a no brainer to put it into the stable. This reminds me to make a point of planning a trip north for some great breweries soon.

Pour is easily manageable, Forms a big brown head that is meaty, chunky and clings to the glass, dries and forms crispies...damn nice, near perfect.

Lots of coffee, burnt aroma. Comes across with a nice woody burnt flavor that has a counterpunch of bitter hops. Bitterness is on the high end of the scale for a stout and it works well. charred taste lingers a bit and gives it a dry finish. Some chalkiness but nothing to hold back a fine brew.

Another winner from a fine brewery.

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Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.29/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

My first beer from North Coast Brewing Co.

A- Pours out a savory dark red and settles in the glass as an opaque black liquid with a mocha brown head.

S- Smells like a spiced cookie. Makes me want to drink it.

T- Taste is not as good as I expected but still quite palatable. Too bitter in my opinion but has a rich molasses flavor that makes me feel satisfied. Some coffee flavor.

M- Feels nice and smooth with a medium body that sticks to the tongue

D- This beer is very enjoyable but too viscous to pound quickly

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Photo of hustlesworth
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- lightly black with deep garnet and rosewood highlights around the bottom edge of the glass. puffy, expansive, tight bubbles head is creamy cappuccino in color and rises out of the glass like a big biscuit with a nice dimpled character of rocky caters and lots of foamy lace.

S- pleasant mild coffee and cocoa aroma, deeply roasted malt and charcoal, burning wood, dark cigar tobacco, leather, and rich compost soil. the foam emits some brown sugar and fruity notes too like raisins and figs all soaked in tar.

T- good deal of charred roasty malt bitterness first, backed up by intense earthy citrus hops, molasses, and dark ripe fruits. coffe tastes stand out with a little bit of dark chocolate as well but not the sweet kind, more like the raw cocoa essence. woodsy, smokey, and nicely bitter with a resinous herbal lasting bitter finish.

MF- thin feel for such a big flavored stout, not to say this beer is thin, just thin compared to other stouts of this immense character. tastes almost imperial, but feels lighter. medium low carbonation gives it a sort of creaminess, but there is still a slight powdery feeling that reminds me how chock full of grain this is.

D- its lighter character sure up the drinkability for me because after one, i don't feel like i just ate lunch. tons of flavor and moderate abv and the fact that i'm not drinking roasted malt concentrated syrup would make her some around the mountain when she comes. for a session, that is.

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Photo of ectomorph
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another mixed 6 from Riverside Beverage!

A - Midnight in my glass with a huge tan head that will not move.

S - Sweet malts from the foam hint at toffee and caramel.

T - Earthy chocolate and toffee malts and enough hop to balance but this is a malt delight!

M - One of my favorite aspects of this style. Full rich body, nice carbonation, and tan foam mustache comes free.

D - Very high, fantastic stout.

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Photo of DrainBamage
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours thick black with a lace of head. Smells like chocolate and coffee malts.At first sip its very sweet but goes down smooth and ends with a little bitterness. Overall a fairly drinkable Stout.

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Photo of Tilley4
4.3/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another one of those brews that I'd never tried but consistently overlook for other things... Won't do it again... This was great..

A nice ruby brown appearance but the foamy head and lacing stole this show... Head never got below 3/4 inch the whole time and it coated the glass the whole way through...

Lots of dark chocolate here as opposed to just roasted malts... Perhaps a bit of coffee as well... Very rich and robust aromas for this style... Like Guinness kicked up...

Dark bitter cocoa and rich deep roasted malts with hints of the coffee from the aromas... A kiss of hops present on the finish as well... Quite delicious... This is one of the better Dry Stouts I've ever had for sure... Not over the top, just a solid as hell brew from a great brewery...

Very sessionable... I enjoyed this the whole time and was sad to see it go...

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Photo of kdales77
4.32/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass. Wondeful color and aroma. Decent tan head w/ minimal lacing. Very low carbonation, smooth as silk. Definetly a good choive if your looking for something different. I'll need to find other styyles from this brewery soon!

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Old #38 Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 647 ratings.