Guinness Special Export Stout (John Martin - Belgium) - Guinness Ltd.

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Guinness Special Export Stout (John Martin - Belgium)Guinness Special Export Stout (John Martin - Belgium)

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

256 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 256
Reviews: 157
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 10.02%
Wants: 122
Gots: 32 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Guinness Ltd. visit their website
Ireland

Style | ABV
Foreign / Export Stout |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TheLongBeachBum on 06-28-2003

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 256 | Reviews: 157
Photo of kmpitz2
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a jet black color with a finger of tan head that persists nicely over top of the brew. Very opaque. Nose is big in dark fruits, light chocolate, creamyness. Good residual sweetness. Nice nose. Flavor is chocolate with a light infusion of fig. Very creamy tasting. Light bitterness hangs on the end. Tasty beer. Feel is Thick, smooth, almost silky, with a moderate carbonation. Overall, this is a good drink. Well balanced and proportioned. Very good feel. No hint of 8% anywhere.

Photo of morebeergood
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tried this beer for the first time last year in Belgium. It was being sold in a convenience store for 1 Euro each. More recently, I was surprised to be sitting in a bar in Milan last month and saw this offered. It was 7 Euros for the bottle, but I was on vacation, and a second chance to have this beer sounded good.
Best glass I could get from the bartender was a mug. Oh well. When poured into a glass, it looks like normal Guinness. The smell, also, has that really roasted, bitter scent. But the flavor is way different, in a much better way. It's so much flavorful than normal Guinness. Flavors of chocolate and coffee are everywhere. It has a creaminess and, at the same time, a smoothness that is remarkable. At no point do you think that you are drinking an 8% beer. It's a shame this beer is not available in the States. I guess that makes it more of a treat when you find it overseas.

Photo of Cozzatoad
4.06/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle

A- Black (or extremely dark brown) colour. Two finger, dense, very light brown head. Great retention at first, just a little ring after some sips. Loads of lacing on the glass

S- Quite weak, even after head has receded, but nice. Creamy chocolate aroma, with notes of nut and raisin. A light alcoholic note in the back. Maybe a hint of leafy hops as well. Overall this is much sweeter than expected

T- Very sweet as the aroma suggested. Rich, full chocolate taste, but really on the sweet side with a delicate caramel malt foundation to it. Nut, alcohol, maybe liquorice notes all blend very well and bring complexity. Finishes with a refreshing hint of bitterness. Not the slightest hint of roastiness

M- Medium body and just a hint of carbonation. Wonderfully delicate on both tongue and palate, but somehow still a dense, full creamy mouthfeel

O- Delicate and rich. Extremely drinkable but still nicely complex, perfectly balanced. Even quite refreshing, which is great to be found in a strong stout

Photo of UnionMade
4.06/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle provided by Goodbyeohio. I saved this one for a special occassion, and review #700 sounds good to me. Huge thanks, man. Best before 04/07/06.
Pitch black, with garnet accents. Looks slightly hazy, capped with a frothy mountain of craggy, tan foam. Large bubbled lace all over the glass, looking like dish soap. Smells like what I always thought Guinness, with it's reputation, should smell like. Images of grizzled coal miners with bristling beards, clutching black pints in a smoky pub. Sturdy, frowning and unwelcoming to strangers. Browned chocolate malt, coffee notes, with a distinct wooden floral english hop profile. Fairly clean otherwise, faint treacle and booze, the hops a bit soapy. The flavor opens with brown, semi-sweet chocolate, thinner than I'd expected, with hints of caramel, licorice and molasses. Not terribly sweet, more like a slightly bumped up version of your regular Guinness Extra Stout. A bit of ale fruitiness is chased by a woody, earthy, almost metallic hop bitterness. Malty bittersweetness in the finish, providing a semi-sweet, surprisingly bitter and dry finish. A touch of medicinal, aspirin-like phenols. The sweetness rallies hard with warmth, rich with coffee and chocolate maltiness. Strong coffee flavor in the finish, particularly as it warms. Excellent bitterness, quite dry, leaving my palate stripped down for the next sip. Fairly light bodied. Modest, small bubbled carbonation very much in the UK tradition. A light whiff of alcohol, brown plastic bottle style ethanol, in my sinuses with each sip.
A huge improvement on what I know as Guinness here in the states. I do enjoy the extra stout, but the nitro draught is nearly characterless. Very nice. Strong, unforgiving flavor, what I imagine Guinness should be like. I would have preferred a thicker body, but the dryness is quite nice. Much higher marks, easily a 5, on the mouthfeel if it felt as substantial as it tastes.

Photo of Bisho
4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Jet black appearance with a tan head that lingers with a lacing that sticks down the glass as you sip.

Smells similar to regular Guinness but with added Belgian esters and chocolate.

Taste is great with less of the regular Guinness smokiness and bordering on Belgian Strong Dark Ale thanks to the added weight (ABV). A hint of bitter dark chocolate at the finish.

Silky smooth mouthfeel and the taste hangs around long after it's gone. Yum!

I have gone back to this stout on many occassions and it tastes damn fine.
If only the regular stuff tasted this good!

Photo of endovelico
4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a dark brown beer with thick pillowy mocha head. Good lacing and head retention. No perceivable effervescence.

Smell: Medium high intensity. Grainy notes, Chocolate, Coffee and some higher alcohols up front. Toffee and a bit of smokiness on the back.

Taste: High intensity. Black patent Roastiness, grainy, coffee, buttery, fusely and kind of a lactic twang aswell. Expected more depth to be honest.

Mouthfeel: Medium full bodied. Medium low to low carbonation. Medium bitterness. Long lasting smoky flavour. Well achieved.

Drinkability: Complex enough although it could use a bit of dark fruit complexity and more balanced roastiness. The alcohol is well hidden and makes this beer surprisingly easy to drink considering th ABV and harshness on the palate. Decent price quality ratio. Would have again although its not even the best Export Stout in Guinnesses catalog.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have been attempting to hunt this one down for quite a while now, and it always seems to be alluding me. I am not a fan of Guinness by any means, so the chance to try one that was so highly rated was a chance I had to take. The pour was very nice, a little bit more of a dark brown then your standard jet black pour, but still essentially opaque with a thick tan head that reached a height of easily over three inches. Really a very impressive looking stout with copious amounts of side glass lace and a very evenly distributed head of lace. Really very nice indeed.

The aroma was rich chocolate and roasted malts that were predominant here. Lots of lactose aromas and a touch of coffee were present as well, this was night and day from the version we get here. The flavor was really very nice. Not nearly as dry and bitter as I was expecting, this was much more of a sweet stout, with dark chocolate hints running throughout. There was a good deal of coffee notes, lots of lactose, deep roasted malts and a touch of sweet vanilla as well. As it warmed there was some nice dark fruit coming though in the finish, more then likely a good bit of yeast. The finish was very sweet, with a smooth creamy long lasting flavor. The body on this one was really full, and nicely carbonated, much different then the dry, bitter version I had been used to.

Overall, I thought this was fantastic. A far cry from the crappy version we get here. This was really a solid beer with a great flavor profile and a full body. I would love to have this again as it is truly deserving of its reputation and worth every penny.

Photo of GreenCard
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: just like a regular Guinness Foreign but with more head; dark mahogany, almost opaque, tan head with nice lace effects

Aroma: roasty, coffee, grain, alcohol, slight maltiness, some caramel, soy sauce, cherries

Flavor: very full flavored roastiness is almost too bitter at first but then the substantial malt sweetness starts to be more evident with each sip; tangy, toasty, caramelly, the finish dry and bitter

Mouthfeel: medium-full body, spritzy carbonation, blooming alcohol warmth (a bit harsh in the throat), slightly astringent

Overall Impression: I heard tell of this exclusive version of Guiness about a year ago and now that I live in Belgium, I can finally taste it. Pretty good stuff. Definitely tastier than the original and more "worthwhile" to drink. Give one of these to the people who think dark beers are stronger and they'll think they're right!

Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.01/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 33cl bottle poured into a standard shaker glass. Out of the fridge and allowed to warn up for at least 15 minutes. Shared with Deuane. The stout appears a dark and opaque brown color with about two fingers of creamy, lingering ecru foam. There is no evidence of this beer clocking in at 8% judging by the aroma and flavor. Notes of bittersweet chocolate, medium roasted coffee beans, caramel, a touch of vanilla, milk chocolate, pipe tobacco are all present. This stout falls somewhere between medium and full bodied with adequate carbonation. It's a shame this one is such a bitch to obtain because it's mighty drinkable.

Photo of timbro81
4.01/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ordered from an online "Belgium" "Shop" and arrived in 15 days. Pours an inky black that is impervious to light. Large frothy light tan head that laces down to a hefty little ring. Smells lightly of sweet roasted burnt malts and some vague hop bitterness. Mouth feel is light to medium with a minimal amount of silkiness to it. Nice roasted coffe notes on the tongue with a dry finish of chocolate and dark fruit. Aftertaste dwells on the roasted side. Hides the 8% pretty well. Would really like to try this out of a nitro tap or can, I think I just blew my own mind. Better than it's little brother. All in all it is a good beer, I'm glad I tried it, but I don't feel like I was missing out on much.

Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of thewolf: Poured a deep black color stout with a huge light brown color head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of liquorice with some light roasted malt and some sweet malt notes. Taste is a mix between some light roasted malt with some notes of liquorice and medium sweet Belgian malt with what appears to be a Belgian type yeast. Medium full body with great carbonation and no apparent alcohol. A very well balance beer overall with a level of complexity greater then the regular version of Guinness available over here.

Photo of IPA35
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a 33cl La Trappe but Duvel style glass.
An almost black but dark brownish beer with an off-white head with good retention.

Strong stout aroma's in this one: roast, liquorice, dark chocolate and dark fruity sweetness.

Tastes of dark fruits followed by roastiness. Quite a good hop bitterness in here as well. I also get liquorice and other typical stout flavours. A bit complex and hard to describe prehaps but nicely drinkable and certainly very full flavoured.

A thick and creamy mouthfeel with medium carbonation.

Overal a good stout and the only stout sold at most supermarket chains in my country so that's a plus.

Photo of titvs
4/5  rDev -4.5%

Review based on BJCP2008 guidelines (style 13D). Bottle 33 cl - Batch L4120. AROMA: sweet and vinous alcoholic like aroma with roasted and coffee notes. some dry grapes aromas. low non existent hop aromas. no diacetyl. APPEARANCE: deep brown color and opaque. nice large and moussy tanned head with good retention. TASTE: roasted grains dominate with some coffee and cacao notes. medium-high bitterness that lingers into the aftertaste with very low to none hop flavours. alcohol notes present with very low diacetyl. finishes somewhat dry. PALATE: médium body with a velvety like texture. some warming impression present. moderate carbonation. OVERALL: a nice export stout with very pronounced roasted flavour, velvety texture and a bit on the dry side.

Photo of jmalex
3.99/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Now this I never expect to get a hold of. But after seeing it in a convenience store in Brussels, I knew I had one of my hardest finds.

APPEARANCE: Pours into an English style pub glass black in color with a 2-finger high light-tan head. The bubbles are both tight and loose and slowly dissipate to a full coating of foam with some spotty lacing dotting the glass.

SMELL: Not very aromatic at all, but the dark chocolate aroma I am getting are extremely rich. It's coupled with a slight smell of dry, acrid, black malt. That's about it though.

TASTE: My initial 2 word reaction to this beer is completely contradictory - flavorless and complex. It's got such a dry stout profile going on that it fails to deliver the rich robustness of a foreign extra stout. But the dry black malt flavor is so nice. It adds such depth and dimension to this beer that is found in no other. It really contributes most of the bitterness to this beer. Other than that, there's some raw cocoa and a hint of sweetness on the end. One thing I will say: I can tell it's a Guinness product.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium bodied with a slightly below average carbonation. No complaints here other than maybe it could've had a bit more body.

DRINKABILITY: I was on the fence here until I noticed it's listed at 8%. Holy crap, I never would've guessed! This does go down really nicely though a second bottle probably wouldn't be in order.

Wow, this is not what I was expecting, but it certainly was a nice surprise. All the different names for the different varieties of Guinness can get confusing, so I'd just call this "Guinness - The Good One"

Photo of mmmbirra
3.99/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Nice lookin beer. Pitch black with a tan head that sticks around.
Understated aroma. Nice and chocolaty, with considerable sweetness, and maybe some figs, but not too pronounced.
It's full flavored, and full-bodied. Lots of chocolate and sweetness, with a nice roasted touch to it that could be, and for me should be, a larger part of the flavor profile. A little bitterness from the roast, and probably a little more from the hops, though I wasn't able to perceive any hop flavor in this one.
Full, rich mouthfeel. Not too thin for the style, not too big, just right.
A good big stout, though I wish there was some kind of slight hop flavor there, and I'm not one who generally likes super-hopped stouts.

Photo of drabmuh
3.98/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Part of my #1 beer per style series. Foreign export stout, #1 beer Jonh Martin Guinness SPECIAL EXPORT STOUT. Its cool how the label says special. How excited am I to have a few bottles of this beer? About an 8. Long time want, closing in on the goal.

Beer poured from a bottle into a Russian river goblet. Beer is brown, dark with a mocha head of small and medium bubbles, good sized head at that. Leaves a lot of lacing as the head falls away to a convex shape resting on the top of the glass. Carbonation moderate to low. Looks good.

Aroma is sweet, malty, yeasty, mild esters. Smells like a Belgian ale. Interesting. Mild roast.

Well this is the strongest variation of Guinness and it shows. Beer is light in body and dry on the finish. There are some late bitterness and roast with a midpalate of mild esters and some sweetness. The beer is absent up front and the midpalate is quickly eclipsed by the dryness. Its mildly alcoholic too, but oddly late in the palate. Its good though. I am enjoying it, but its not like any Guinness I've ever had.

Photo of HopHead84
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

8/22/2010

Thanks! The beer is black with a frothy light brown head. The nose displays a dry roasted malt quality with a light coffee character. Smells like a nice dry stout. Alcohol is noticeable in the flavor with a moderate dry roasted grainy malt character and a touch of nutty character. The beer finishes dry and light with a touch of coffee and a lingering dry roast. The mouthfeel is full, creamy, and dry, with a lower level of high carbonation.

Photo of domtronzero
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Very dark brown, nearly opaque. Big, long lasting tannish head with little lacing.

S - Roasty, chocolatey dark malts. A little bit bready. Big raisiny nose.

F/M - Bready, roasty, caramelly malts with a firm typical Guinness bitterness. Classic Guinness house flavor in the dry finish. Lingering chocolatey roast malt flavors. Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

O - Much better than Guinness Draught, roasty and chocolatey and much more bold. Still has the classic Guinness taste, but much more satisfying.

Photo of goodbyeohio
3.94/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

thanks shaughn256 for the taste

11.2 oz bottle. pour is a bit difficult.. not knowing what to expect, i pour this into an imperial pint. familiar guinness cascade of bubbles stops 1/10th of the way through and sits there with an 8-finger head. definitely a different beer composition here. slightly seethru.. black with brownish foam, dissolving slowly into crusty craters leaving dank lacing on the glass. smells like marzipan and fruity yeast. not at all what i expect from a guinness, but very mouthwatering nonetheless. significantly thinner and fluffier. flavor is deep and complex, only playing partially off what irish/american guinness represents in its trademark roasted bitterness. alcohol strength and slight banana/floral character help to balance a significantly less chalky big bitterness. lactosian creamy sweetness emerges with warmth.

a better version of a beer that i thought was subpar to begin with. good mouthfeel but doesn't stand up to the familiar nitro smoothness when consumed from a not-so-fresh standard bottle. just as drinkable if not moreso than the original. glad i got a chance to try this crazy bastardization of a beer.

Photo of ThaCreep
3.92/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Color black with dark brown. The charred malt feels strongly, it offers scents of caramel brown, bitter coffee and a little toffee. The entry on the palate is alcoholic, slightly burnt and it offers, tasting, sour and bitter tingling that spread in the finish, added a powerful lasting bitterness. Good command of such export stout, well balanced and offers a nice range of flavors, it is the archetype without sublimate kind. Heady, strong and powerfully bitter, it is quickly exhilarating.

Photo of Jeffo
3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this at the bottle shop down the road from me.

From a bottle into a snifter

APPEARANCE: Pours black with some nice carbonation effect after the initial pour. Afterwards, no carbonation evident at all. A big three finger medium tan head fades relatively slowly into a thin film. Some lacing evident.

SMELL: Dark fruits initially, with some roasted barley malt and some black licorice. Nose is alright and powerful enough.

TASTE: Mirrors nose somewhat. Roasted barley malt with a smoky component as well up front, with some bitter hops and chocolate flavors through the finish. A touch of alcohol at the end, but well controlled. Alcohol and bitterness in a strong and longer lasting aftertaste. Good stuff for sure.

PALATE: Medium-thick body and pretty creamy on the palate. Carbonation is there but balanced well. Goes down smooth but finishes with a bit of a bite. A slight bit of stickiness lingers. Good here.

OVERALL: Obviously this is a very different beer than their pub draft; they are not comparable and are not meant to be compared. I could see how someone who loves the pub draft would not like this. Too bad, because this is a great beer on its own right. It's certainly drinkable, and the nose is sharp and impressive. Looks and feels great too. This is a perfect example of how good Gunniess can be. One I'll re-visit. Recommended.

Photo of benfons
3.87/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

A: completely impregnable dark brown, nice creamy brown head

S: candy syrup, molasses, hints if dark chocolate and prunes

T: dark roasted nuts, hints of hops, chocolate and tobacco, some malts, even a bit candy sugar syrup

M: thinner than expected, really dry, little carbonation, some warmth

O; this isn't my favourite style but it's a pretty good beer

Photo of Thorpe429
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle thanks to drabmuh. Served in a Bruery tulip.

Pours with a thin tan head and a nearly-black body. There are some light spots of lacing around the sides and bubbles on top. The nose is light roast and a surprising amount of caramel and, especially, toffee character. There's some light candy and brown sugar as well.

The taste brings a good dose of toffee along with some light roasted character and some super mild espresso following through after that. Medium body with moderate carbonation. The finish is fairly smooth and slightly dry. This is nice and easy to drink. The finish seems to dry out even more as I get through the bottle. Pretty good stuff. Thanks again, Matt.

Photo of pwoods
3.84/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to tprokop7 for sending this rare extra and finally knocking if off my wants list.

33cl. brown bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours pitch black with a large creamy mocha head with some pretty decent retention. Nice lacing throughout.

S: Lots of roasty aromas backed by some cream notes. There's a definite lactic smell throughout, close to a milk stout. Plenty of sweetness, maybe some vanilla.

T/M: Nicely roasted malts, not too bitter but nicely balanced. More of the somewhat big lactic notes. Pretty sweet with more of the vanilla. Has a pretty dry finish that kind of tastes like necco wafers. Light, milky, chocolately notes in the back that come out further as it warms. Body is medium with nicely smooth carbonation. A bit of alcohol comes out as it warms and adds a nice touch. If not at room temperature, you'd never guess this at 8%.

D: Pretty easily drinkable and 8% isn't much of a factor. Very glad I got to try this. Thanks Todd!

Photo of mothman
3.8/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to dougofthefuture for this one.

Poured into snifter. Pours a finger of creamy chocolate hued head. Great retention leaving some thick lace rings. Color is pretty much black.

Aroma: Chocolate milk and cocoa powder. Creamy and nutty. Kind of sweet.

Taste: It reminds me more of stout than the other guinness beers I have had, but I can still pick out the guinness characteristics in it. It is very chocolately and creamy. Has a cocoa powder flavor. Creamy again with a touch of nuts. A bit of coffee and roast in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and dry. Medium to full bodied with a bit higher amount of carbonation. Ends dry and roasted.

Overall, this was a decent stout. It was very flavorful and pretty easy to drink. Thanks Doug for this one!

Guinness Special Export Stout (John Martin - Belgium) from Guinness Ltd.
93 out of 100 based on 256 ratings.