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

435 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: 435 | Ratings: 908
Photo of impending
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

500ml into a tulip. Pours a dark translucent reddish copper. The head was of belgian proportion. Guess this is my first bottle conditioned english ale.

I'm expecting the aroma of a belgian as well but it doesn't have that common level of sweetness and of course the distinguished yeasts. It does have dark fruits and the wood is obvious, no hint of the alcohol. I smell a brown ale backdrop with minor burnt toffee.

Feels sharp on the tongue while still rich and creamy. Bready malts but not much in the dark fruits. Pronounced cask flavoring, peppery and quite dry in the finish. Alcohol comes forward with warmth.

I like this a lot but I was hoping to like it even more because I'm a believer in Tadcaster. I know, sounds kinda stupid since I give an A. Absolutely the most complex brew from England that I've ever had - bar none - in a good way. This is in the category of a sipper. Slip in a selective yeast and encourage some restrained phenols and this would be a first rate belgian.

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Photo of BigBlacke
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this into a standard pint glass. First thing I noticed is the tan frothy head that dissipates very slowly. This head sits on top of a dark murky red beer with sediment all throughout.

Smells of rich caramel with raisins and fig. Nice and hearty with spice.

Taste is of plum, raisin, fig and caramel with a subtle alcohol background. Alcohol is very well hidden behind the spice.

Mouthfeel for the most part is creamy, but there is a very small bite from the moderate carbonation.

I find drinkability to be easy, in my opinion it has similar qualities of an old ale. There are only 2000 cases shipped worldwide a year, so if you see one. Buy it.

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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 IronDjinn
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a 550 ml brown bottle, gold foil around neck and cap. Pours a translucent chestnut brown, tight spongy light beige head with good retention.

The aroma exhibits light notes of wood, raisin, treacle, caramel, brown sugar, bundt cake, vinuous plum, some mild grass.

Hello flavour train, this one's a winner right from the first sip! Warming alcohol, brown sugar, mild wood, toffee, plum, caramelized bready notes, with a mild herbal hop finish and some green apple.

Medium-full mouthfeel, velvety smooth texture, low carbonation.

Picks up a bit of bite as it reaches room temperature, but up until that point it's a great Old Ale, full of character and depth, masking the high alcohol well and having it work to its advantage. Expensive, but worth picking a bottle up if you can.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.68/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer served in a nonic. Beer is brown / reddish and kind of hazy. Forms a thin head that breaks made up of small bubbles with moderate carbonation. Tiny head leaves some lacing on the glass.

Aroma is mildly caramel but overall light.

Beer is kind of oddly bitter, almost tannic. Its a big beer, just like the other one but its slightly more watery. Interesting mouthfeel overall. Its got some lead off sweetness and some a little bit of fruit flavors in the midpalate. Comparing it to the 1845, its not as flavorful and slightly less body. Both are good but IMO 1845 is better. I would drink this again but its so high in alcohol its not a recreation drink. Generally Sam Smith won't let you down and this is yet another example of a solid English ale. Would be interested to have this on cask someday.

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Photo of Gosox8787
3.23/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Presentation: Picked up a 550 mL bottle of this at a local store. Poured into a pint glass in two parts.

Appearance: Dark to medium brown in color. Almost burgundy. Two finger beige head with decent retention.

Aroma: Subtle toffee and oak upfront. Not very aromatic at first, but opens up throughout the glass. Some raison and plum notes here too. A sharp alcohol note makes its way in toward the end as well.

Taste: Caramel and plum upfront provide some sweetness. Toffee always pretty noticable here. The oak hits near the end, but is rather astrigent and harsh. The more I drink the more the alcohol really comes through.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, but not that crisp or smooth. Much more well suited for sipping.

Drinkability: The alcohol was really smooth and well hidden at first, but half way through the glass hit hard. I was all set after one.

Overall, I was dissappointed in this offering. Nothing really stood out as great and the blend of flavors seemed inconsistent. For the price tag, this was one and done for me.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.82/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a tulip glass) brewed in 2008 aged for a year in old barrels
A- The brown body is dense but clear with a red glow to it. The fizzy boiling head of tan fades quickly. The strong carbonation of big bubbles race to the surface.
S- The slight tart note gives way to wet old wood and brown malt. There is an apple cider quality to the malt with some deep dark caramel hints and a butterscotch aroma that grows.
T- The tart cidery note blends with wet wood and brown malt, all being pretty soft flavors. The finish is a faint alcohol taste with a bitterness in the back of the throat like cinnamon heat. The buttery note and cherry note comes through in the malt as the beer opens up.
M- The medium-light mouthfeeel has a soft alcohol heat and a watery texture with a fizzy bite in the finish.
D- This beer is interestingly odd. All of the off flavors seem purposeful and work together. It would be nice to have a little more malt flavor to add to the buttery, cidery, cherry, oxidized flavors. This is a quarky brew that taste like a historic artifact.

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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 Phelps
3.42/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Looks: a cloudy, opaque amber-maroon with a fizzy head the color of beach sand. It flees after just a few seconds, becoming a ring and leaving little in the way of lacing.

Smells: treacly. Sweet raisins, bread pudding, brandy. Perhaps a bit of toffee and toasted bread. Not bad at all.

Tastes: like raisin, mostly. Very, very lightly roasted, the sweet malt reveals notes of toffee and raisin bread. Light notes of alcohol-ridden brandy poke their heads in the back. Maybe the lightest hints of oakiness in the back, but for a year of aging the amount that's here is just sad.

Feels: medium carbonation, medium-light bodied, but nicely mellow across the palate.

Drinks: I was recommended this by someone whose beer knowledge I greatly respect, but I can't see the allure. I can think of several better strong ales.

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Photo of Manoftyr
4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance-Pours a rich deep red-mahogany color into the glass, really love the color, about a finger of thick and densely bubbled/packed beige head rises and lowers very slowly. Some lacing is left but it has trouble sticking to the glass instead sticking to the top of the beer along with a prominent ring and some dabs along the middle. It's a damn good looker of a beer, that's for sure.

Aroma-Oak and vanilla upfront, overpoweringly so as a matter of fact, I can't really smell much else. Maybe something of a buttery/malty undercurrent, but I've gotta look for it.

Taste-When I first take a drink it kind of tastes in between their Taddy Porter and the Oatmeal Stout with reminiscent flavor profiles plus a hint of vanilla, but then after I swallow the aftertaste kicks in, and wow, this is perhaps the best aftertaste I've ever tasted on a beer. A wave of oak and vanilla comes through with such force that I swear I can smell it from the back of my tongue. Really nice.

Mouthfeel-Medium-plush body with above-average carbonation, I might've liked slightly less carbonation but, eh, this works just as well anyway.

Drinkability-Drinking it more slowly than I could to savor the flavors and that glorious aftertaste but it's a struggle to wait between sips; gotta rate this high on the drinkability scale.

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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 darkmartin
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours to a murky, molasses-brown with a thick tan head. Minimal lacing surprisingly.

Smell: Caramel hits me first, followed by some interesting fruit notions. Hops dont seem to make an appearance. Overall smell is very sweet and rich.

Taste: Rather similar to the smell, caramel at first. However the taste progresses to sweet vanilla, then finishes with subtle, fruity hops. Really good.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and somewhat sticky. Fair amount of carbonation that seems to fit the style.

Drinkability: The enjoyable dark, sweet, fruit flavors are nicely paired with the subtle bitter finish. This really is something that can only be enjoyed slowly.

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Photo of CashMoneyVagrant
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I love Samuel Smith beers but the 10 dollar price tag has kept me away from this beer but, while visiting a friend in Michigan I found a retailer selling it off for $4.99 a bottle! The beer pours a cloudy reddish-brown color. With a nice creamy, dense somewhat dusty brown head of foam. The nose is strong almost brandy-like the alcohol is evident. Smelling of cherries, plums, and raisins. There is a little sourness going on with the oak, a lot of dark fruits. Very complex nose, suggesting a heavy, warming brew. The taste and body of this beer was crazy. One of the few brews I've had that didn't drink the way it smelled. It was smooth, and creamy with that characteristic Samuel Smith fruitiness. It was very easy to drink with lots of dark fruits, toffee, some sourness, a good vanilla-mellowness from the oak. All around a very drinkable, not to heavy, complex brew that hide it's 8% percent alcohol quite well. I could of easily drank this beer all night. Glad I got it for the price I did but, I would defiantly purchase this beer again at regular price. Wish I would of tried it sooner. Has good aging potential.

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Photo of SteveDavies
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle-Conditioned 9% 55cl bottle from The Beer Emporium, Sandbach. Poured into an oversize Moors Brewery glass with slight lacing on the pour. Appearance is a rich ruby colour. The fruity aroma hits you immediately, prunes, cherries, damsons, with caramel prominent. The aroma is a real promise of whats to come. The complex nature of this ale abounds in the taste. As in the aroma, dried dark fruits dominate the palate. A chewy mouthfeel adds to the experience with lingering soft bitterness. A rather expensive beer that would inhibit drinking it too often, but as it's brewed as a special it's definitely worth a go

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to bu11zeye for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a hazy orange color with a white head. The aroma is very fruity and is also has a lot of sugar notes. The flavor is strong cherry with some toffee and caramel malt sweetness. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of Pahn
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

550ml bottle into Duvel tulip. Brewed in 2008.

Appearance: Free pour yields a one inch, fluffy offwhite head that dissipates quickly leaving no lacing. The beer pours an interesting solid orange/brown. Beer leaves no lacing to speak of.

Smell: Fig, raisin, some cola, some sweet malt. Grassy and herbal notes emerge as the beer warms, as does a really nice sugary cake smell.

Taste: First sip: Rather sweet, with fig, caramel, toffee. Not as hot as I expected from 8% ABV. Complex aftertaste that transforms into sort of prune and caramel flavors. The alcohol heat suddenly pops up after a minute. This promises to be a beer that takes a long time to drink but delivers lots of good flavor. We'll see if it comes through...

And to end the suspense, it does. This is a huge, flavorful beer. It's not quite as aggressive as some of its American powerhouse counterparts, but it's providing flavor for days. So far the transition is: roasted flavors come out, now lots of raisin, now a bitterness creeps up near the end, now oaky vanilla mixing in with the dominant dark fruit and caramel, now that beautiful sugary cake malt from the nose is showing itself in the flavor. These flavors don't so much replace each other as build on top of each other, changing and enhancing the balance of the beer as a whole; it's really nice.

The flavor keeps coming too. Now there's tobacco, now some banana, now some sourness. Lots of tannins and caramel and dark fruit and malt and crazy random flavors. Too much going on here to write a review that doesn't look like a grocery list. I'm very impressed.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, with a little more carbonation than it needs. Kind of juicy, occasionally borders on oily or watery, and gets pretty sticky and chewy.

Drinkability: A nice sipper to relax over for an hour or two.

At $10 for 550 ml, I don't know if I can really suggest buying this beer, but I'm glad I tried it. It's a good one. It's very deep... If you're drawn in by the label and buy this despite its hefty price tag, chances are you're doing so because you're looking for exactly what this beer is ready to deliver. You can find similarly big and deep beers for less money, but if you favor such beers you might want to try this at least once since it could turn out to be your favorite beer.

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Photo of rarbring
3.94/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A clear deep amber with brown and red notes, an off-white head that recedes quickly leaving really no lacing.

The smell is vinous, Madeira and sweet dried fruits, raisins.

The taste is much dominated by the sweetness, dried figs, raisins, some sour and earthy notes, a short bitterness.

Small carbonation, an oily feel and a complex body.

Good as a desert beer, can need e.g. a stilton as complement.

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Photo of Zorro
3.91/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Chill hazed burnt orange colored ale. There is a small tan colored head.

This is a powerfully aromatic ale it hits you the moment you open it. There is a STRONG candied fruit smell here. Candy dates, pineapple, cherry, and a raw tobacco scent. This smells strongly of pipe tobacco. There is a rum and grape smell here. About the most aromatic beer I have smelled in at least a year, maybe more. Can't think of a beer I can compare it directly to, this isn't a DIPA. Pliny the Younger and Three Floyds Dreadnaught are the only two on the same level of complexity.

Starts out sweet and sour spices with a mushroom after taste. Tobacco appears in the flavor. There is some vanilla in here and some fig but the flavor isn't as good as the scent.

Mouthfeel is good.

Drinkability is OK. It is hurt some by that slight sour taste.

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Photo of Parrotbeak
4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cloudy amber with a quarter-inch, off-white head that thins out a little but remains full. Thick lacing.
Smell is bready, slightly buttery malts, with a little bit of hops. Some toasted notes, as well as some toffee and caramel. Figs and raisins as well.
Taste is more bready, buttery toasted malts. Hops are far more subdued than in the smell, being slightly grassy. More toffee and caramel, but again more subdued. Ample notes of oak. Fig and raisin. Malty and roasty on the finish, with a touch of salt.
Mouthfeel is smooth with a slightly dry finish. Medium-light body. Moderate level of carbonation.
Drinkability is good. I prefer lower ABV English Ales, but this one is a very good take on the style.

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Photo of hopstradamus
3.97/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. This beer pours easily a dull and cloudy golden brown with a thick creamy head that settles in nicely.

S. Alcoholic and floral with hints of sherry and oak. It has a malty sweetness with decent hop aroma as well.

T. More malty and sweeter than I expected with hints of figs and some vanilla. Some hop bitterness, and the aftertaste is where you get the oak. Very good.

M. It could have more body, but the 8% alcohol was well hidden.

D. Easy to drink and a real pleasure. This was the 2008 vintage and I wish I had found it sooner. I will be getting another bottle to cellar for a rainy day, great beer!

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Photo of MarvinSnyder
4.77/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Notes from 6-10-10 - poured into a pint glass - 550ml./ 1 pt. 2.7 fl. oz - capped bottle - cellared from summer 2009

Appearance: Pours a hazy, caramel apple with a thick, foamy, cream head that dissipates to thin. Not much lacing.

Smell: Rich, sweet, malt aroma with notes of dark fruits (raisins and plums), vanilla, and hints of caramel and oak.

Taste: Sweet malt, oak, vanilla, a hint of cherry tartness and a dry fruitiness. The alcohol provides complexity to the flavor.

Mouthfeel: Moderate to low carbonation. It pours over the palate with a syrupy sweetness and warming alcohol.

Drinkability: Very drinkable. A great beer that changes dramatically as it is cellared.

Comments: I was able to procure several bottles and cellar this beer, noting the changes along the way. I believe this beer peaked about six months into the cellaring process. I'm glad I had the chance to experiment with this beer. It really shows that there are pros and cons to cellaring.

Pairs well with venison.

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Photo of Brent
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It was a nice change to focus on a beer that has stood the test of time, rather than the latest uber-hoppy or malt-monster on the scene. After reading the bottle and noting the barrel conditioning and stone-vat fermentation, I expected somethign with an odd flavor profile. My bottle was two years old, and was exceptionally mellow. Raisin and caramel malt, mildly sweet and calling to mind a long-aged barleywine.

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

55 cl short-necked brown bottle with an old-looking label in beige and red - black writing.
Looks kind of exclusive.

A: Pours hazy burgundy with a rather large off-white head. Slow dissipation leaves little lacing.

S: Rich sweet malt, a bit caramelly. Dark dried fruits. Some alcohol. Fruity in an English way. Faint vanilla - I'm guessing oak.

T: Sweet rich malt, almost syrupy. Fruits, dark dried as well as ripe red apples and faint citrus. Vanilla. Very English. Some alcohol.

M: Long aftertaste with mostly sweetness. Body is creamy syrupy medium to full and carbonation is moderate.

D: A nice beer, but I regret that I didn't put it in my cellar for a couple of years - no it's to alcoholic and a bit unbalanced. This will probably evolve into something great if cellared properly.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 550mL bottle into my Unibroue tulip. This bottle indicates it was brewed in 2008.

Appearance: rich, dense, hazy amber-brown color with two thick fingers of foamy, slightly orange head.

Smell: rich malt aroma with notes of caramel and subtler hints of raisins and plums. It smells quite nice, actually.

Taste: big malt flavors, starting with caramel and working down to a tart, dry fruitiness with the aforementioned raisin and plum, but also some pear and hints of cherry and oak. The tartness is minimal, but I think it adds a little something. Quite a tasty beer.

Mouthfeel: big bottle-conditioned carbonation combined with a medium-thick, syrupy body mean big creaminess. Love it!

Drinkability: quite a drinkable beer. I rather enjoy it and would gladly have again.

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Photo of TLJ
3.99/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This is a great beer. It's a deep, mahongany colour with some lacing and a creamy head which sticks around for a while. The smell is warm and inviting, almost reminiscent of roasting chestnuts. The taste is rich and malty, with flavours of caramel, almonds and bourbon vanilla, although I wish it had a creamier texture. However, the spicy hop finish and slightly lighter feel to this beverage allowed it to be smooth and drinkable, as opposed to syrupy.

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Samuel Smith's Yorkshire Stingo from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
4.08 out of 5 based on 908 ratings.
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