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Samuel Smith's Yorkshire Stingo | Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

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431 Reviews
Samuel Smith's Yorkshire StingoSamuel Smith's Yorkshire Stingo

Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
United Kingdom (England)

Style: English Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by mdagnew on 12-22-2008

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Reviews: 431 | Ratings: 891
Photo of STEG
4.75/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 550ml bottle into a sam smiths pint glass with a 1 finger off white head. Smells of caramel and stonefruit, Tastes of peaches apricots and vanilla with other lurking flavors like oak and plum and I'm surprised that I'm not getting the stony flavor that I've gotten from those yorkshire squares in some of their other offerings most likely due to the oak barrel aging after the yorkshire squares. Mouthfeel is creamy and warming at the same time. Its wonderful to drink and I'm glad I got 2, I will be getting at least 2 more so they can warm me up in those northeast winter months.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.75/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

550 mL bottle, great late 19th century style label, by far the most expensive Sam Smith's beer, but I got a BevMo gift card for Christmas, so I picked this up,

A: Pours a beautiful Burton amber with a nice cask-like soft head with very good retention.

S: Complex and rich. A nice mix of dark sherry soaked cherries and mild lemon, bread pudding, almost Flanders Red like at times with the sour oak components. Light notes of cheese/funk and mild oxidation notes, but works wonders in the nose of this style of ale.

T: Definite English/Maris Otter type malt hits first. Delicious oak and acid flavours mid-palate. Some sweetness at the end with raisin and caramel candy. A contemplative effort.

M: Perfect. The carbonation is there, it hits, is crisp but dances on the tongue and glides away leaving you wanting more. Great complex aftertaste of oak and fruit. Smooth and silky throughout. Alcohol is non-existent.

D: This is fantastic beer. Man I wish this was $5-6 a bottle, but alas it's not to be. I can only see this getting more complex with time. I don't know how long it will last, but I'd like to be with it on the journey. Sam Smith's introduced me to English beers, and with this effort is reminding me that the English make some of the best beers in the world, especially with their strong/olde/barleywine type ales. This is a beer that harkins back 200 years to tradtional English brewing with true lactic character, minerality and complexity. A must buy even at the $13 price-tag, open up a book of Tennyson or Hardy and relax and reminisce on a cool winter evening.

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Photo of compass40204
4.74/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is admittedly one of my favorite beers. At 8%abv it really isn't a session beer, but it's my favorite session beer. This beer has a very pronounced oak character. Malty, but the sweetness isn't derived solely from it. Finishes clean, not boozy. Very slight warming sensation. Slightly tart as it warms up. Love the caramel and toffee notes. That's why I have a case of it in my basement. Wish it cost a lot less...

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Photo of Rockatansky
4.72/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Upon first pouring this beer, I was struck instantly by the smoky, oaky essence that was coming forth from my pint glass. A few feet away and my nasal passages were filled with a thick aroma that hung there and didn't seem to want to dissipate.

After allowing this sensation to wash over me, I took the opportunity to place the glass up to the ambient lighting in my kitchen as if it were a prism to see what color I could draw out. Burnished copper, slight reddish hues dancing in the background with faint eggshell white, wispy head that quickly dissipated into a skein on the top of my liquid. After a few drinks, no lacing to speak of is apparent.

Placing the glass to my nose, I am instantly drawn to a pouch of Red Man chewing tobacco, raisins, plums, dates and figs. A slight candy sweetness radiates out as well, giving light to the amount of malts that must have made thier way into this brew. The smokiness that was at once so omnipresent and inviting has slowly withdrawn, only allowing a few fleeting glimpses of that oak cask this beer was laid down in.

At first, the sweetness grabs your tongue and slathers on a nice dose of molasses, malt extract, toffe and prunes. But as quickly as those flavors are pronounced, they recede and a wonderfully boozy middle comes in to play and takes its time before allowing the beer to come to the grand finish. The oak that this beer was aged on seems to have certainly seen its fair share of use. As the flavors subside, a strong prsence of oak and all of the character that it imparts is left. Vanilla, a slight char, just a wisp of smoke and a hint of whisky thrown in for good measure.

The carbonation is spot on and allows for a proper introduction between tastebuds and beer. Not so powerful as to wash the flavor away before full enjoyment and appreciation can be reached. A slightly oily and viscous property to the liquid also promoted fulfillment of the senses, as if velvet were being tantalizingly pulled across your tongue.

Considering this beer clocks in at 8%, I find it to be remarkably drinkable. My mouth is left wanting more, as are my other senses. A beautiful beer, and a great addition to the Samuel Smith stable. While the price may be off putting to some, I can easily see myself justifying that price by my experience with this beer. Higly recommended and worth searching out!


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Photo of JohnnyWong
4.71/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Served slightly chilled from .55L bottle. Pours clear, amber color with red hightlights. Thin creamy head. Nose not as pronounced as I anticipated. Bread pudding, raisin, and butterscotch aromas. Lighter body than expected but I like it. Candied/caramel apples, sweet bread flavors. Hints of oak but not a major chacteristic. Devestatingly smooth. Finish is clean with lingering butterscotch/caramel flavors. Amazing.

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Photo of culver501
4.7/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-beautiful dark amber color, fat tan head, good carbonation

S-Fantastic, toffee, oak, licorice, hint of cloves

T-Wow, definitely a strong beer, sweet and sour, the words wine like come to mind right away, i'm guessing that's the oak flavors imparted along with the many other beers which resided in the same oak over so many years

M-really lingers even after first sip, really coats, even the aftertaste is complex as hell


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Photo of yuriruley
4.7/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - nice golden/red colors, not much of a head when it settles, but it stays with it.

Smell - mainly getting an apple smell, but it smells good.

Taste - Apples like I was getting on the smell, not sure if this is from the yeast they use, but I get it from a couple of their beers and I love it. Also some caramel and a bready flavor in there.

Mouthfeel - pretty crisp carbonation wise, thicker than I expected. Reminds me of some of the barley wines I have had.

Drink - going down easy for me could probably drink a couple.

I have wanted to try this beer many times, but it is always like $13 around here so I always decide against it. But I was feeling down tonight so I got it as a treat to myself, and I am glad I did because it is delicious.

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Photo of sethcroisant
4.69/5  rDev +15%
look: 2.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A- unimpressive half-finger of head that quickly dissipates. hardly any lacing. i poured the 20 oz into two different bottles, so that also contributed to the lackluster appearance.

S- wow! VERY sweet with all kinds of dark fruit and caramel scents. if it's possible for a beer to smell dense, this is it. also some hints of bread mixed in. very faint herbal hops in the background.

M- almost syrupy and incredibly chewy. somewhat low carbonation, but it's easy to ignore with the other magnificent textures.

T- a little puckering up front from a combination of the alcohol, hops and overall dryness. flavors of fresh baked bread are aggressive. candy-like caramel sweetness follows towards the end.

O- phenomenal blend of flavors. pretty expensive, but it's a nice treat to have on special occasions.

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Photo of SportsandJorts
4.69/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Brewed 2010 and a bottling date in 2011. Consumed in 2014

Appearance: pours a deep leathery brown color. hints of red and orange. a finger or so of a tannish head with decent retention and leaves behind a spotty lacing. completely opaque with a murky cloudiness. leaves behind a nice yeasty slurry in the bottle.

Smell: dark fruit qualities that are quite liquor like. earthy to leathery notes from a bit of oxidation. molasse. caramel and toffee sweetness.

Taste: opens with a bit of malty sweetness. dark fruits-like liquor comes in next with raisins and plums, can be almost rum like. a strong slightly bitter earthiness comes in along with a slight hint at roasted malts. leathery at times. Oak barrel qualities come in towards the end with molasses vanilla, more sweet toffee. alcohol is sometimes present and a little solvent-like.

Mouthfeel: full and chewy. some bitterness. a little bit of a prickly carbonation.

Overall: I don't know how I have overlooked this beer for so long. its just the kind of beer I love. nice sweet malty notes along with great spirit like character and just a bit of age to it. great balance and taste.

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Photo of JamesS
4.67/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a great thick and deep brown color, with great initial head, although no lacing. Great scent, thick and malty with wonderful vanilla tones and a bit of alcohol and bourbon. Very deep flavor, malty and thick, very barleywinish with a very noticable bourbon cask finish. Goes down very well, with perhaps just a bit too much alcohol in the flavor and finish; very warming, very good.

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Photo of ImusBeer
4.65/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured a Dark amber with a light tan head died rather quickly.

Smell of caramel and malt with some spice.

Taste of malt and very sweet caramel along with whiskey overtones.

Mouthfeel starts syrupy then with malt sweetness and lastly an alcohol bite.

Drinkability very enjoyable the high gravity at 8% makes it a bit heady after a full bottle

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Photo of Offa
4.64/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is an excellent ale, rich, complex, but smooth.

Faintly hazy red amber, it has a big tan head steadily shrinking.

Aroma is a lot of rich fruits, raisin, caramelised apple, lots of leafy earthiness, light spice, hint of sherry, hint of toasted whole wheat bread.

Taste is spicey fruits up front, rich and complex, with caramelised fruits, leafy-toasty after the up-front sweet-spicey fruitiness, then more leafy-toasty character, faint woodiness growing by the finish. Full, rich maltiness is balanced with nice hop character and it finishes balanced and dryish. Feel and body are full and slightly oily but not heavy, slick or truly oily. It is very smooth and yet complex.

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Photo of tekstr1der
4.63/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Immediately one of my favorites, after already-high expectations from the rest of this brewer's lineup.

Slightly cloudy mahogany pour in a tulip, holding a clingy finger of dense foam. The aromas of raisin, prune, and caramel seem a mix of elements from my two favorite styles: dopplebock and belgian quad. Indeed, I already know this is a favorite before tasting, but the flavor only reinforces the sweet, ripe-dark-fruit flavors and clean non-cloying finish. Wish I'd bought more than one. Back to the store...

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Photo of beveragesampler
4.63/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

"The SS Stingo is a limited release product that was revitalized in 2009 after being lost for over 20 years.The 09 was brewed at 8% and the 2010 is brewed at 9%." This answers my question on the ABV%.

2010 Review
A: poured three fingers carmel colored head reducing to a frothy pillow top. deep opaque dark brown to amber. some sediment in bottom of glass at the end. which is OK becouse i need my vitamins.

S: intriguing and well balanced. roasted carmel, nutty, earthy with a subtle sweet aroma.

taste: creamy and smooth. light alcohol hint. earthy tobacco. roasted nutty and lightly sweet carmel and raisin. subtle citrus on finish. prominent malt backbone. mild oak characteristics.

M: pleasant, soft and fluid. light effervescence

D: excellent. 9% ABV i could easily savor a couple of these.

I agree that the 2010 stingo is nicely done and should rate at the top of its category. Once again i would definately recommend this beer. the brew is a wonderful drinking experience.


my 2009 review
my bottle was brewed in 2008 and released in 09
also an item of note; the bottle is marked at 8.0% ABV

A: poured into a SS pint glass. deep hazy amber in color with three fingers off white head. nice retention that reduced to a thin film. no lacing on sides of glass.

S: very inviting. dominate cranberrie and red fruits. toffie, rasin and earthy citrus.

T: creamy with a strong malt backbone. flavors are fairly complex. initially red fruit notes hit the toung then rolling down the sides of the toung rasin and some oakiness sets in. the finish is earthy, some citrus and subtle tobacco characters. hops ballance everything out and cleanse the palate, with little to no bitterness.

Mouthfeel is creamy smooth, almost silky.

drinkability is exceptional. even at 8.0% ABV i feel i could drink several of these.

Sam Smith's continues to be amoung my favorite brewery's. This brew got a 100% rating at Draftmag.com , however i feel that it was not an impartial review. the label from my bottle looks identical to everyones pictures, so i dont understand why the beer is listed at 9.0% ABV when my label clearly says 8.0% ABV. if anyone has insite they can lend on the ABV, please feel free to share.

i would definately recommend this beer. the brew is a wonderful drinking experience.


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Photo of Auraan
4.62/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a rich, cloudy, dark amber with a one finger off-white head that dissipated slowly to an off-white ring leaving little lacing. It looks excellent, yeasty and traditional. Scents of caramel, toffee, sour green apple, rich, dark bread, fruity esters, brown sugar, yeasty aromas and hints of oak. A wonderful, well rounded, rich, complex and alluring aroma. Truly excellent, showcasing the malt forward nature of the beer, the yeast and the oak cask aging. Flavor begins sweet, with caramel, toffee and honey, alongside some mellow notes of apple. Fruity flavors, including apple, but also dark fruit, raisin and prune mostly, appear in the middle and continue into the finish. Also appearing in the middle of the sip is a nice, bready malt flavor. Towards the finish and in the aftertaste there is a bit of oak and some faint wild yeast funk. A rich, complex combination of flavors, hitting all the notes I enjoy in a malty sweet beer. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a slightly drying, yet also sticky feel and light carbonation. A very easy to drink ale that goes down smooth and quick, hiding its ABV. Overall this is an excellent Strong Ale. It has a rich, complex and truly wonderous aroma and flavor profile combination, aided in drinkability by its mellow carbonation and semi-drying mouthfeel. The barrel aging makes this beer a complex, yet not overwhelming ale. A wonderful beer and well worth the somewhat steep price.

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Photo of ohbeer89
4.62/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Everything I love about Sam Smith's Winter Welcome, but more so. It has a sort of burnished, round, nutty quality that ties right in to the perfect mouthfeel that clings to every part of your palate. Enough coppery notes from what must have once been fuggles and goldings and some tannins from the oak give the beer structure and keep it from dissolving into a mushy mess.

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Photo of Impfan
4.62/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nothing like the Watney's Stingo of old. The color is a particularly refractive cognac/amber, and there are esters of raisin, plum, cherry, treacle, toffee, vanilla, plum pudding in hard sauce, and oak. The body is medium and oily, and the flavor and carbonation are very soft. It's a sweet brew, on balance, but never cloying, with just enough flowery hop dryness in the finish, and a lot of finesse.

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Photo of EROlsizzle
4.62/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The flavors in this beer are just so spectacular and well-balanced, that I couldn't wait until my next one as soon as I finished the first. The barrel-aging imparts less of a flavor than in others, and it blends perfectly with the deep sweetness of the malt and the complex character. This is the type of beer I can see being the perfect choice for any season or mood.

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Photo of BWood
4.6/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Exceptional beer. Great look, taste, and feel. Good head that dissolves to a low but laces the glass. First time having this beer and I will definitely keep one in my beer fridge from here on out.

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Photo of RusImpStoLuv
4.59/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Half a 550 ml into a pint glass. My first Stingo, bottled in 2010, so a few years on it. From open, pour, and throughout the first glass, the aroma is amazing. Very precise smell, won't forget it. Taste is so mellow and sweet, very smooth. Not much to not like about this. Cheers!

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Photo of Kris450
4.59/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Heavy alcohol on the foretaste, but ends in a heavy but incredibly smooth mouthfeel. Has hints of oak, smoke and wood, similar to a scotch. Poured a half inch head, that disapated to a cream rim with no lacing left on the glass. Great beer. Very much enjoyed it.

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Photo of Radome
4.58/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 500 ml bottle into a goblet.

A - Medium brown color, maybe some red. Murky/cloudy. Off-white head was thick and fluffy. It faded to a paper thin layer and a thick ring around the glass. Great lacing.

S - Sweet malty goodness. Graham crackers, raisins, plums, prunes. No obvious oak, but there is an aged sherry note and a strong, sweet alcohol aroma.

T - Initially very sweet with brown sugar, graham crackers and dark fruit, all from the malt. Some oak in the background and lots of alcohol. The finish is surprisingly dry with some earthy hops. Very complex.

M - Medium to heavy body. Sparkling carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel. Alcohol not too hot.

O - This is a big, delicious beer. Very complex, but smooth, clean and refined. Outstanding!

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Photo of GilGarp
4.57/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I love the story behind this beer. There are so many barrel aged beers on the shelves today - everything from bourbon to chardonay - but this beer was aged in beer barrels! What a novel idea.

Served cool into the ol' Watou glass, Stingo is a hazy redish brown color with head that develops only when poured right down the middle. It settles quickly leaving no lace. This all seems about right for the style.

Aroma is classic English old ale. Lots of sweet dark fruits, brown bread, caramel, vanilla from the oak, and so on.

Flavor is intense too. This is one impressive beer! Samuel Smith has always been underappreciated and I think this one makes the strongest case for that. Dates, plums, raisins, caramel... all mingling together in an oakey wonderland. Sweet without being cloying, intense without going over the top, and full of nuances that make every sip a new discovery.

Mouthfeel is medium to full with low carbonation. Really pleasant sipper.

Overall a fantastic beer! I need to go out and get some more!

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.57/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Never had a Samuel Smith beer I didn't like. Big thanks to OneDropSoup for the 6 dollar hookup.

A - A solid half inch of head with a light pour and this beer is lively and full of carbonation. A pretty hazy amber with no sediment. Off to a great start.

S - Slight bourbon notes with a strong oak base and an underlying caramel sweetness. Strong and pleasant smell.

T - Wow very little if any actual ABV burn. All the flavors of wood, bourbon and caramel meld together in one of the smoothest old ales I ever drank even more-so than aged Hibernation ale. You get Sweet and then bitter oak and finishes sweet again with little hop or grain bitterness to speak of. Truly a one of a kind beer!

M - Even for 9 percent mouth feel is medium and creamy. The only part you notice the ABV is after the first glass!

D - Man if I ever saw this in a store at a reasonable price (6-8 dollars) I would pick it up so quickly. Sadly the only place close by is trying to squeeze 12 dollars a bottle for the rarity. Another solid brew by Samuel Smith. Thanks again OneDropSoup for the amazing beer!

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Photo of adamette
4.57/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Live review. Poured from the 550 ML bottle that I purchased for $10.99 at Save-On Tobacco & Beverage in Mentor, Ohio a few weeks ago. My friend Bill reportedly bought it for something like $3.49 at the same store a few weeks before that. I guess that they wised up on the price since it really should have been the higher of the two amounts. "SB12I1" stamped on the neck of the bottle, whatever that might mean. Also the following printed near the bottom of the label: "Aged in Oak Ale casks Matured for over a year." 8.0% Alc./vol. Poured, of course, into my Samuel Smith pint glass.

A Brief light brown head that dissipated down to a ring around the top of the beer within a few minutes over a great looking slightly opaque dark caramel body. 4.0

S Nicely sweet malt goodness which has a molasses type quality with a minimum of hops. I like this smell since it is inviting and interesting. 4.5

T The smell proved to be a good indicator of the taste with the welcomed added feature of the oak in the taste. Sweet, light molasses sweetness of the malt with only a hint of hops and, as suggested, a nice oaken woody softness that is really nice. I cannot imagine that this can be improved. 5.0

M Nice and big with a syrupy stickiness, thickness, but softened, as mentioned, by the oak ale casks. Very good indeed. 4.5

D Well this is a big beer but the drinkability remains good for me since it is so delicious. If it did not cost $10.99 a bottle I probably would be buying many more of these. 4.0

Notes: A rival for Nut Brown Ale for my favorite Samuel Smith beer. I am very impressed by this one!

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Samuel Smith's Yorkshire Stingo from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
4.08 out of 5 based on 891 ratings.
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