The Handbook of Stouts and Porters: The Ultimate, Complete and Definitive Guide

Shelf Talker by | Apr 2015 | Issue #99

The Handbook of Stouts and Porters: The Ultimate, Complete and Definitive Guide
By Josh Christie and Chad Polenz
Cider Mill Press, November, 2014, $29.95

There’s something about Porters and Stouts that brings out the historian in people. Mention a smooth body and roasted malts to a beer geek, and you’ll likely get a lesson on the 19th-century British tax system. In this book, Christie and Polenz survey the styles, past and present, straightforward and extreme. They start by reviewing today’s classic Porters. Then, just as we’re appreciating the nuances of a Deschutes Black Butte, they introduce the smoked, coconut, coffee and vanilla renditions. Stouts are even crazier. This historically “strong” style (today, some push 20-percent ABV) has bred cult followings; brewers have added Mangalitsa pig, oysters and pretzels to their Stouts, and they’re all included here. Not to be left out, outlier dark beers get reviewed by Josh Bernstein. We’ve come a long way since three threads, but if you really want to see a beer historian bug out, ask them about White Stouts. 

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