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

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

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

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: 437 | Ratings: 911
Photo of Dope
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brewed in 2012. Just released so must be fairly fresh? 9% ABV.

A: Pours the deepest, darkest red imaginable. Clear; no sediment. Tall, fizzy and fluffy tan head. Head fades out slowly, leaving zero lacing but top notch retention.

S: Malty. Lots of caramel and toffee primarily. Decent bit of dark fruits, primarily raisin I'd say. Lightly floral and oaky too.

T: Yup. Plenty malty. Lots of toffee with a little caramel sweetness to back it up. Again with the light dark fruits (raisin). Some stale bread crust in the middle. Decent bit of oak everywhere but especially in the finish and aftertaste. Lingering prickly toffee and lots of oak between sips.

M: Medium bodied, smooth. Slightly higher carbonation than I expected.

O: Interesting and tasty brew. Lots of toffee. Not super overpowering, just the dominant flavor. Pretty decent complexity between the maltiness and the oakiness. Nice balance of flavor. Nothing stupendous but probably the best english strong ale I've ever had.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.06/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Okay- I had a 2010-brewed 8% version, so I will have to update upon acquiring a new 9% variant. It has a thin, cream-colored head, a definitely opaque orange-brown appearance, a few visible bubbles on the side of the glass, and minimal lacing left behind. The aroma is bold- heavy, overly-sweet brown bread crust, sugar, caramel, and pungent malt. Taste is also rich and bold- an almost intolerably sweet and cloying barley malt, bread crust, sugar, brandy wine, and hop bitterness (although, this is low). Mouthfeel is heavy and prickly, and Samuel Smith Yorkshire Stingo (2010- 8%) finishes rich, sweet, and intense. It’s not for everyone, and it’s expensive, yet I still love it.


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Photo of fourstringer
4.24/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 550 mL bottle into a matchy-matchy Sam Smith pint with a moderately aggressive hand. A bit heavy on the pour, but no worries. Label states "brewed in 2011". This has been hanging around in the cellar for about a year.

A: Dark yellow-orange with 2 fingers of light caramel-colored head. Good retention. Still 1 finger at 2 minutes. Slightly cloudy. Light lacing.

S: Sweet mellow malt with fruity notes. Grape. Candy. Cola. Apple. There is an acidity that is not quite citric and not quite acetic.

T: Rather tangy, spicy, malty sweet & sour up front with a English hop bitterness on the finish. Semi-dry in the end. More tartness than I was expecting, but sour is good in my book. Some toffee and roasted notes appear late and linger. Little of the fruit I picked up in the nose. Malt. Sourdough. Rye. A lot of interesting malt here. Alcohol presence is appropriate for 9% ABV. Wasn't sure about my first few sips, but really into this now.

M: Moderate carbonation that briefly tingles strongly and rapidly fades away. Nice moderately full body. Great feel.

O: Really nice brew. I'm feeling the sting and it hurts so good. I had this a year ago, but can't say if it's improved with age. Certainly didn't suffer.


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Photo of eduardolinhalis
4.08/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle served in a snifter chalice.

Brewed in 2012. Best before 2015. 8% ABV marked in the bottle.

A: Pours a clear dark amber color forming a big, solid, thin bubbled beige head. Good retention and some few spotty lacings left in the glass. A thin layer remains for long time on the top

S: Sweet, malty and fruity. Strong notes of toffee, caramel malts and oak. Strong notes of grapes and dry dark fruits too. Remarkable bubblegum in the nose. Strong British character. A bit of alcohol can be felt in the very end

T: Sweet upfront. Strong notes of toffee, candy sugar, caramel malts, oak, brown sugar, grapes, raisins, brown bread and tutti-fruit bubblegum. In overall, a slightly sweet taste

M: Medium body. A bit molasses. Medium to low carbonation. Sweet malts and wood in the aftertaste

O: Good drinkability. Another British masterpiece from Samuel Smith

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Photo of Kuaff
4.42/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I have here a bottle that was released in 2009, but brewed in 2008 (it's that year of cask-aging)... poured into a mug at cellar temperature.

A one-finger, fizzy tan head on a pretty clear reddish-brown body. Somehow the deep hue seems slightly purple to me.

The aroma is extremely brandy-like, and there's most definitely a mix of vanilla, caramel, and raisins, too. It's a killer combination. Very reminiscent of dark fruit cake. It actually smells almost exactly like a brandy-soaked dark fruitcake which I had last winter.

It tastes like rich butterscotch and toffee with some lingering raisin and cherry sweetness. A sweet and bready beer.

The feel isn't overly hefty, but fairly full-bodied.

I think this is the oldest beer I've ever imbibed, and it was quite, quite good. This Stingo stuff ain't too shabby.

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Photo of brureview
3.48/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

This is a very difficult beer to find. I was expecting more- a prominent raisin-plum taste and aroma.
The aroma was light- fig and mild plum.

The mouth feel was soapy and watery- I tried two glasses and this mouth feel was the same.

The taste was a mild plum and fig, Overall- disappointing. The bottle was brewed in 2011, perhaps a fresher bottle would have better. The Boulevard Collaboration 3- a Stingo-was far superior: more distinct fruit and tart.

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Photo of IronLover
4.36/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Deep amber in colodr with autumnlike orange and brown hues and a deep haze. Poured with a thick off-white foam that reduced to a healthy cap. Sweet, sugary caramel malt aromas with ripe, slightly tart fruit notes at the end. Medium bodied with a rich, smooth, oily feel and alighly subdued carbonation. Caramel candy and malt flavors with notes of buttery dark bread. Floral hops thru the middle followed by ripe fruit flavors toward the end. Yeast and fruit flavors are similar to a begian strong dark ale but not as prominent. Finishes incredibly dry with lingering floral hop and dry and ripe fruit aftertaste. Somehow the intense maltiness and hop character subdue the booziness.

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Photo of pkalix
4.4/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

mahogany color, little foam, not transparent, and leaves some 'soapiness' on the sides when tilted. very stately though and beautiful to look at.
aroma is all sweet malts, plum, raisin. typical british malt mix, which is good.... absolutely love this smell and can keep my nose in the tulip glass for hours...
same as the aroma, for sure, but with some alcohol bitterness. sweet. dark fruits. plum and raisins. dried fruit? the higher abv is very noticeable in this. by higher, I mean we all know all their beer is 5%, even the stouts and brown ales. but they are delicious standards. apparently, going the extra is just like adding the extra in pure alcohol tones....
overall, this is a very nice brew. I always wanted them to do something bigger than a 5% (not knowing this was out there) and now I know what it would taste like. still haven't tried their strawberry or fruit stuff but i'm afraid i'll lose the respect for everything I've tasted from them so far. they are always a safe 'go-to' when i'm not sure what I feel like drinking!

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Photo of Radome
4.58/5  rDev +12%
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 sommersb
4.31/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Tasted On: 09-16-2013
Freshness: Brewed in 2010
Packaging: 500ml brown bottle, pry-cap with foil
Glassware: Samuel Smith tulip pint
Purchased: Single from Chuck's, Bowling Green, KY

Murky and copper in color, with a small cream-colored head. The retention is fair at best, with a low level of lacing.

Aromas have a sweetness of molasses, plus dark fruits such as dates, clove-like spices and a woody/musty character. Complex and pleasing to the nose

The taste is very nice and smooth -- sweet, but not cloying, with flavors of molasses, dark fruits such as raisins and figs, and dark brown sugar. Alcohol warming is evident but not overpowering.

For mouthfeel, I'd say carbonation is between medium and the high end, on a full and chewy body. The finish is somewhat sweet with the dark fruits and brown sugar notes mentioned previously plus an oak wood presence.

Overall a real gem; a delightful ale I recommend.

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Photo of Brenden
4.02/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A deep medium red color, this beer shows some mahogany in the highlights and a little darker red in the body. The tan head rises tall and shows some fortitude. Retention is very good, really. Lacing is mostly spotting but a little firmer in places, and sparsely populates much of the glass.
Lots of candied fruits in here, bozzy for sure but not too hot, it's all kinds of fruity with lots of bready malts to boot. It's really got all kinds of sweetness, though it isn't too much and it isn't cloying. So much dark fruit (cherry, raisin, currant, etc.) with some big, doughy dark breads as well as vanilla and toffee make up the bulk of it. Some rum-like solvent notes and something almost like port sit in the nose and come out thickly in the flavor. On the tongue, there's a biscuit and a little bit of a fusel note, and just a flash of butterscotch, before a very interesting light tartness comes out.
There's a nice, firm malts base giving this beer a medium body that doesn't get thinned out, thoguh a bit of a sting hits the palate. It's pretty smooth with a little something to the feel from the crispness, too. Despite the sweetness, it actually goes a bit dry into the finish, which is surprising.

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Photo of Premo88
3.41/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

18.7 oz. bottle poured into nonic glass

L: murky dark orange/brown; very soapy looking head of tan, about 1/4-inch to 1/3-inch; the bubbles are really big, and the foam is whispy ... NOT thick; no stick off the whispy head and no lacing

S: very old ale-like -- malty for sure, some sweeter/lighter bread notes but also the old-ale raisins/figs

T: much like the nose but with a mish-mash of things you can't smell, most notably a twang from the oak-ale casks ... at least I'd swear that's what I'm tasting, just a hint of oak/wood in there; first sip is a really good mix of the bit darker old-ale figs/raisins but with that sweet bready malt goodness of a lighter English ale

F: slick, not much carbonation, comes off a bit flat

O: I LOVE Samuel Smith's, but this brew is not my jams. in fairness, I might have a "bad one" (though there is nothing to suggest it -- bottle has SE28L1 printed on it, and i'm not finding the code translation anywhere) ... but a malty brew like this should age OK, right?

anyway, this brew is not worth it for me for the price. i'll pick up one at a place where i'll know it's fresh later on down the road to give it a fair second chance, but a 6-pack of Old Peculier or even a sixer of Anchor Steam Bock would taste about the same or better -- this brew simply doesn't pop, and i'm not a big old-ale figs/raisins fan to begin with.

sorry Sam Smith ... still love ya though!

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Photo of REDAMI
3.94/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 550ml bottle into Samuel Smith pint glass.

A - Copper, orange in color with a highly laced off-white head.

S - Stone fruit, bready malts, yeasty funk.

T - Malt forward, estery, no distinct hoppiness.

M - Some alcohol warmth with well blended flavors.

Lighter than expected and lacking distinct flavors or notes, very muddled.

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Photo of Hoppsbabo
4.16/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought fresh from the brewery shop in Tadcaster and drunk from a Samuel Smith's snifter.

A: Beautiful darkish amber. Clear. Off-white foamy head.

S: Bready and fruity. Fudge.

T: Bread pudding fruitiness, vanilla, fudge, liquorice and nail varnish combined with the hoppy bitterness and that gingery prickliness you get from English ale. It has sweetness but it's balanced beautifully with everything else. Strawberries appear further down the bottle.

M: A very elegant effervescence.

O: Close to perfection.

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Photo of chinchill
3.84/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured hazy, dark amber with an excellent head. The head is durable but left little lacing. Some odd orange particles suspended in the beer.

Aroma: features fruit, grains and biscuit plus some oak barrel.

Taste: ABV partly hidden; oak aging is quite apparent.

M: medium body; medium+ carbonation; smooth; almost no sign of the alcohol.

O: a refined strong ale.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.89/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - cloudy amber, thin head of light tan that manages just a partial cover after a bit of setup.

Aroma - apple cider aroma but lighter and less sweet. The fruitiness is also different with more of a barleywine caramel citrus lean. Kind of disappears after setup.

Taste - malty, caramel and sweet graininess. A balancing nip of bitterness and oak on the swallow, some noticeable and complementary abv warmth. A fine finish of warmth and wood, toasty malt and fading, drying light bitterness.

Mouthfeel - an element of smoothness somewhat interrupted by the crsipness. Medium-plus on the body.

Overall - a nice evening sipper, has as touch of elegance to it.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.02/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brewed in 2011.

Pours a hazy dark reddish-orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small patches of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, toffee, and candied fruit aromas. There is also a bit of a sour aroma that becomes more noticeable as the beer warms up. Taste is much the same with a woody flavor and an alcohol kick on the finish. There is a mild amount of woody bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty but has a better smell in my opinion.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Portion of a 500ml bottle into a Hunahpu's snifter. From notes.

A: Pours a dark copper color. The head is a one finger cream shade.

S: There's a lot of sweet caramel and brown sugar which I half expected. What really struck me is the strong vanilla qualities the aroma also provides.

T: This has a lot of vanilla to open the flavor profile. After a bit, raisin/caramel sweetness gives way to a balanced, dry mineral finish. Really pleasant, and complex to boot.

M: I really like the creaminess of this one. The body is of medium texture, and it coats the tongue smoothly.

O: This had a level of richness to it that many of the imperial stouts I had that day lacked. It's not super easy to drink, and it's kind of pricey, but it's a great one to savor slowly.

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Photo of sethcroisant
4.69/5  rDev +14.7%
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 farrago
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Be careful with the pour or you will get half a glass of frothy, loosely knit foam, mostly medium to large bubbles which is sort of unusual for its size, retention is excellent and it simmers down at a slow pace, as a result, though, the lacing is close to nonexistent, first because there’s no space, second because the head is glued together so tightly. The liquid is a cloudy copper red, hard to see any bubbles, captures light well, particularly as it takes on a more orange rust to clay cast near the glass sides. The nose is infused with vanillin oak and toffee, molasses notes, pralines and figs, just short of dates, fruitcake, lightly boozy, not overly roasted and actually comes out on the demure side, not short but compact. In the mouth it’s close to full-bodied and super creamy in texture, rises to coat every pore in your mouth. That noted, not too carbonated and there’s ample opportunity for the vanilla, caramel, caramelized brown sugar and maple syrup to settle in. Not that sweet, indeed, finishes on the dry side. Stays in the range of fig, golden raisin, dried apples with a hint of orange peel. No perceptible alcoholic heat. Tactful without impairing your ability to simply enjoy it. (Brewed in 2011)

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Photo of jjchristiano
4.53/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I read a review on this beer in Draft magazine. And the rating system at the Total Wine store gave this beer a perfect 100 rating.
Thought it was outstanding and a great compliment to the stuffed lobster dinner I was having.
But it did remind me of some of the regional offerings like the Yard's Revolution Series or the Harpoon Leviathan. Big alcohol and malty character. This is a style I really enjoy especially when I'm sipping just one from my oversive Duvel tulip with a great meal.
It was somewhat expensive at $12 for a 550ml bottle so I don't know that I'll be buying regularly but I'm glad I treated myself to one tonight for my birthday.

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Photo of Jimmys
4.07/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

500mL bottle into tulip. brewed in 2011.

A: a dark orange, murky. almost more of a brown. slightly off-white head is very frothy. retention is great. tons of frothy lacing left behind.

S: definitely oaky. slightly vinous. there are some undertones of acidity. sweetness as well. you can tell this thing has been aged on some oak that wasn't cleaned out. I appreciate the added layer of depth.

T: sweet to start. almost sour. sweet notes are slightly nutty, chestnuts, as well as fruity, prunes. similar to the nose, there is a slight acidity. a little cidery. apples. woody. a little bit of heat towards the finish but it is very minor. finish is nutty and lingers long after the sip is gone.

M: carbonization is solid. medium/full bodied.

D: a little surprised that this body isn't a bit fuller, however still plenty of aroma and flavor. carb is spot on, nicely done with the bottle conditioning. a nice beer, but I was expecting a little more. if I went into it without any expectations I would have been better off.

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Photo of superspak
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 1/28/2011. Pours fairly clear reddish brown color with a 1 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings to the glass. Aromas of raisin, prune, toast, toffee, caramel, pear, apple, brown sugar, bread, oak, earth, and light herbal. Fantastic aromas with great balance and complexity. Taste of raisin, caramel, toast, toffee, pear, apple, molasses, bread, light oak, light clove, pepper, earth, and herbal spiciness. Slight bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark and light fruits, caramel, molasses, toast, toffee, earth, clove, light oak, and herbal spiciness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice malt complexity and balance with the light hop spiciness; with zero cloying flavors present after the finish. Light-medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a creamy, slick, and slightly sticky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is extremely well hidden with hardly any warming noticed at all after the finish. Overall this is an excellent English strong ale. Very nice amount of flavor complexity and balance; and very smooth to sip on. A very enjoyable offering as expected.

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Photo of gr0g
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky reddish brown, topped with a two finger head of light tan foam. Head retention is good, and there's a smattering of lacing. Rich caramel, toffee, and candy apple in the aroma. Oak notes from the cask aging are apparent, along with yeast and a touch of fusel alcohol.

The flavor is malty-sweet, but not overly so, as hop bitterness picks up mid-palate to balance things out. A generous amount of woody vanilla from the oak cask aging. Fruity esters of ripe pear and fig. Medium mouthfeel and soft carbonation, maybe a bit too soft. However, this is very quaffable for a 9% ABV ale. Alcohol is apparent but never intrudes into the flavor as an overt solvent character.

Yorkshire Stingo possesses all the best characteristics of a classic English winter warmer, only much more malty and with a smooth, oaky character. It isn't cheap, but it's well worth a try.

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Photo of FLima
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown red color beer that made two fingers of head with a medium retention.
Very nice aroma of caramels, fruits, oak cherry aging type and licorice.
Sweet malty taste with caramels, wood and fruits, with hints of plum, green apple and licorice. Alcohol has a warming effect, though a bit boozed.
Aftertaste is dry and warming. Full body with light to medium carbonation with small bubbles.
Very well balanced, complex and smooth flavor with a silky feeling while going down. Great for cold weather, felt nice when I had it during a cold day in trip to London.

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Samuel Smith's Yorkshire Stingo from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
4.09 out of 5 based on 911 ratings.
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