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Guinness Special Export Stout / Antwerpen Stout | Guinness Ltd.

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Guinness Special Export Stout / Antwerpen StoutGuinness Special Export Stout / Antwerpen Stout
BA SCORE
4.12/5
Exceptional
483 Ratings
Guinness Special Export Stout / Antwerpen StoutGuinness Special Export Stout / Antwerpen Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Guinness Ltd.
Ireland
guinness.com

Style: Foreign / Export Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This 8% abv stout has long been a secret pleasure among beer connoisseurs and indeed our Brewers, who value the mouth watering intensity of its roasted malt, smoked wood and dark chocolate notes, not to mention it's excellent and seemingly endless finish. Since 1944 we have been exclusively exporting this same special stout from Ireland into Belgium through the vibrant port of Antwerp. This is the first time we're making it available for general release in America.

Added by TheLongBeachBum on 06-28-2003

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#2,102
Reviews:
242
Ratings:
483
pDev:
9.71%
Bros Score:
4.16
 
 
Wants:
142
Gots:
89
Trade:
1
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 483 |  Reviews: 242
Photo of Ciocanelu
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.75/5  rDev -9%

Photo of Gkruszewski
3.93/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of russpowell
4.26/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

BBD of 4-29-11, got this from Bitterbill, cheers Bill!

Pours mahogany/ebony 3+ fingers of rocky mocha head, such a good looking pour! Great lacing & good head retention

S: Figs, woody & leafy hops, raisins & iron. all kind of drop off as this warms

T: Dark fruit in abundance, dryness, a touch of carob & just a hint of coffee up front. Figgyness & leafy hops rule the day with just a hint of molasess & vanilla as this warms. finishes dry, roasty, fruitty & with carob & leafy hops

MF: Full bodied, low but noticable carbonation, well balanced, smooth

Drinks too easy, I know I could come closer to sessioning on this versus the more well known little brother bottled or canned version. If I ever come across this I love to cellar some to see how this ages..

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Photo of ZEB89
3.81/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of woodychandler
3.69/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I have had a good several days as a customer at The Friendly Greek Bottle Shop here in Lancaster, PA. They took delivery of a bunch of new & different beers on Thursday & our crew of (usually) Friday evening knuckleheads swooped in to procure them.

From the bottle: "A rich and robust Stout"; "First brewed in 1944 for export from Dublin to Antwerp."; "The Brewers Project"; "A group of enterprising brewers on a quest to explore new recipes, reinterpret old ones and collaborate freely to bring exciting beers to life. This 8% ABV Stout has long been a secret pleasure among beer connoisseurs and indeed our own brewers, who value the mouth watering intensity of its roasted malt, smoked wood and dark chocolate notes, not to mention its excellent and seemingly endless finish. Since 1944 we have been exclusively exporting this same special Stout from Ireland into Belgium through the vibrant port of Antwerp. This is the first time we're making it available for general release in America."

I Pop!ped the cap and began a moderate pour, but as soon as I saw the pseudo-cascade begin, I backed off to allow it to do its thing. That turned out to be the creation of three-plus fingers of dense, foamy, rocky, deep-tan/light-brown head with great retention. Color was Black/Opaque (SRM = 44), allowing ZERO light penetration and showing cola highlights only on the bottom edges of the glass. Nose smelled of dark chocolate, light smoke and treacle, but not terribly different from other Foreign/Export Stouts. Mouthfeel was medium-to-full, not quite creamy, but close. The taste very much mirrored the nose - bittersweet chocolate, smoky charcoal and the tart, off-sweetness of treacle. Finish was semi-dry, very much of bittersweet chocolate & treacle with a light, lingering smokiness. Not bad, but does it merit the hype of bringing it to the U.S. for the first time? Eh. I can find Guinness Foreign Export pretty easily as it is, so the arrival of this one does not really trip my trigger.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.23/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Murky mahogany with blood orange accents. Most of the pint glass is filled with immensely creamy, golden sandstone colored foam after a fairly vigorous pour. Who needs nitrogen? Melted marshmallow-like stickiness leads to a beautiful array of finely etched lace.

The nose (although everything that an export stout nose should be) isn't the best I've ever encountered. It's nice and roasted malty, with all the good things that implies. I'm expecting explosiveness once the glass is tipped up.

Guinness Special Export is damn good beer and a classic example of the style, but I don't understand why some people worship it. There are plenty of big stouts out there that are better. Having said that, the flavor is making a late move and is growing on me with each successive sip.

This beer definitely has a power that the much more widely available 6.0% Extra Stout lacks. It tastes impressively 'black' malty, with a burnt caramel vibe underlying the dark chocolate and roasted coffee beans. It's also raisin and date fruity, with slightly more sweetness and a less intense dryness on the finish than the smaller beer.

The body/mouthfeel is the only (admittedly slight) chink in the armor. The above score is probably too generous, but it really doesn't deserve the lower number. It's a fraction thin and loose for the ABV, possibly because the 'best by' date is a mere four days from today.

I have mixed feelings about Guinness Special Export Stout (brewed in Ireland for export to Belgium, France, Luxembourg and The Netherlands). It's a bona fide classic, but it isn't the be-all and end-all of the foreign/export style. Still, I'm thankful to have finally acquired this relatively rare gem. Thanks to tendermorsel for sending it my way.

 1,744 characters

Photo of Jason
4.16/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

11.2 brown bottle, sample from the brewery.

Grandiose head on top of a very dark brew, yeah ... this beer is showing off. Roasted grains, ripe dark fruit, light molasses, and a mild buttery tone on the nose. Soft roasty palate, a little buttery, dark brown sugar, and a suggestion of dark German bread and a very mild coffee on the palate. Modest hopping, warming alcohol, cooked dark fruit, and a toasty note in the middle. Finishes a little sweet, malty, and roasty. My third trip to Belgium in my mini bar was this lush beer, I talked to it and it talked back until I drifted off to sleep. Thanks guys for listing to me, while beer geeks would have loved this beer 10-15 years ago in the US I am happy to see this again ... please make this a yearly visit.

 761 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
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.

 1,606 characters

Photo of Slatetank
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of johnnnniee
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Received in trade from brdc, thanks for the opportunity.

Pours a solid dark brown with garnet highlights when held to the light. Fluffy mocha head persists for a while. Smells of dark dried fruits, Grainy malt and oats. Faint chocolate and roasted malts. Bit of a sour note on the nose as well. Taste is chocolate, dried dark fruits and a sour twang with a dry finish. Roast/chocolate fill the palate long after the liquid is swallowed. Mouthfeel is creamy very coating. Body is medium to thick. Carbonation is medium to high. Great export stout! This is the one that should be sold in the States, I'd buy it often if it were more available.

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Photo of stakem
3.81/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle into a pint appears black in color with a khaki head that fades leaving patchy lace.

An aroma of sour mash and anise, day old coffee and earthy tobacco.

Its tastes of tobacco, earth, char, chocolate and overally just roasty with hint of anise.

This is medium in body with modest carbonation. Overall the best iteration of guinness that ive had in a long time.

 369 characters

Photo of tdm168
3.57/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of 22Blue
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ejimhof
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of imbibehour
4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Creamy and rich cascading and lathering head, easily making a solid three fingers or more. Light espresso but darker than tan in color, it has excellent capped retention and staying power. Body color is a dark rich walnut black, nearly midnight with just a faint touch of opaqueness under the head. Great looking stout.

Notes of cream and vanilla on the nose. A kind of carob like chocolate sense, and whoppers milk like candy. Slight fruity berry like esters match out as well. Quite solid if hints a little sharp acrid in places too strangely.

Very nice palate, with a hint of creamy mouthfeel but also a bit hinting quick and washing wet feel too. Balances a nice light roast but also soft malt body in the mid palate. Aftertaste has a bit of woody dryness, a hint of hop bitterness, and some interesting lingering charcoal like flavors as well. Stays away from being too sweet if hinting just perhaps a bit of banana in the mix.

A pretty nice enjoyable stout.

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Photo of Billolick
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My wonderful wife returned from Belgium with one little bottle of this fine product, bless her heart! "best before end of" dating (18/02/06) Pours the expected jet black with a long lasting dark tan head, leaves respectable lacing. Nose is loaded with cocoa and vanilla. Very smooth and tasty stout, that does a masterful job of hidding its 8%. Notes of pleanty of toasted/slightly burnt malts, vanilla, cocoa, cafe au lait. Mild and quite pleasant, I wish I had a few bombers of this instead of one 11.2 oz bottle...oh well, it was a pleasure to try this one.

 560 characters

Photo of a77cj7
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.41/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottle purchased at Nathaniel Square Corner Store in Rochester, NY.

This one pours a nice dark brown-ish red, with some black tinges, with a 1.5 inch foamy head, and a good level of lacing.

Smells like roasted malt, smoky tobacco, toffee, caramel, butterscotch, dark chocolate, and dark coffee.

This is another example showing that Guinness can actually make good beer. I've never liked Guinness Draught, or Guinness Extra, but Foreign Extra, and this reimagining of the John Martin Special Export is awesome too. There's a lot going on, with a super creamy taste, dark fruit, maybe some cherry, with toffee, black coffee, a wonderful nuttiness, light smoke, and sweet chocolate. Wow- there's really a ton going on here.

This is medium bodied, could maybe be a little thicker, but it's far from thin. It's super creamy (it is Guinness, after all), with a good level of carbonation.

This is absolutely stellar. Now to figure out how to get a bottle of the original John Martin Special Export stout for comparison.

 1,017 characters

Photo of Duff27
3.83/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Tone
4.18/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a clear, dark brown color. 3/4 inch head of a tan color. Great retention and decent lacing. Smells of strong pale malt, slight roasted malt, slight sweet malt, strong Euro yeast, and a hint of syrup. Fits the style of a Foreign / Export Stout. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of strong pale malt, slight roasted malt, slight sweet malt, strong Euro yeast, hint of caramel malt, hint of alcohol, and a hint of syrup. Overall, good aroma, body, blend, and appearance.

 519 characters

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.65/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

solid ebon hue, saves ruby tinges around the bottom, enormous, volcanic, creamy tan head, with honeycombed appearance, leaving lace, a delight to watch dwindle down, gracefully...
the nose is a blast of dark, yet bright fruit, mingled well with molasses and mocha, delicious, a shiny sensation, bold and beautiful, trickling hints of anise and pepper, with sweetness heavier than the spice...notes of vanilla, a bit of butterscotch...staggeringly complex, and right up my alley, aroma-wise...
Thick and sweet in the mouth, with forceful, yet pleasing presence on the palate, slying slinks on the tongue, dripping flavor throughout...same complexity of flavor found in the aroma occurs again in the taste, a rich mix of cocoa and coffee, sweet caramelly tones, dark molasses, tar, licorice, pepper, and a fresh feeling, though I have no idea how long it's been since this beer was bottled. Full bodied, long, strong, sweet finish, excellent balance...tons of dark malt, not much hops, but still, a wonderful interplay and a unique flavor combination.
This is an astonishing stout...the alcohol is well hidden, and sneaks up on you, and delivers one into a comfortable lull. A relaxing brew, luxurious, and immensely rewarding. It goes without saying that I wish this were as easily available as the Extra Stout found here, let along the "Draught" version.
If I found a genie in a bottle, that's where one wish would go!

 1,422 characters

Photo of Wasatch
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a chalice a nice black color, nice small creamy tannish head, which leaves some nice sticky lacing afterwards. The nose is malty, sweet, slight scents of toffee, chocolate, caramel. The taste is sweet, malty, and some nice dark tones to it. Medium body. Very drinkable, this one is way better than the original. Highly recommended.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up in Belgium this summer. This stuff is available at every corner store in Brugge. Best before August 27th, 2010. Served in a Surly pint glass.

A - Pours with a big billowing two fingers of mocha foam that takes a long time to dissipate, and leaves clumps of chunky lacing and a thick cap. The body is dark, dark, brown with a glint of ruby highlights and transparency.

S - Molasses, dark chocolate, roastiness, dark fruits, a touch of smoke & tobacco. Even though candi sugar isn't listed as an ingredient there's something "Belgian" about the smell - perhaps the yeast used, even though this is brewed at St. James' Gate.

T - Dark roast coffee/espresso, dark chocolate, not quite as sweet as the nose, and with lots of bitterness in the finish. The aftertaste is actually surprisingly clean, as the bitter flavors dissipate quite quickly. Alcohol is quite well hidden.

M - Smooth medium body, with light carbonation tingle. There's a little bit of warmth after a few sips. It's perhaps a little thinner than I like for an 8% stout, but otherwise I have no real complaints.

D - Why the heck isn't all Guinness like this? It's a sipper with the intense flavor, bitterness, and 8% ABV, but otherwise it's easy drinking. Worth seeking out if you're ever across the pond.

 1,286 characters

Photo of Hayley_86
3.75/5  rDev -9%

Guinness Special Export Stout / Antwerpen Stout from Guinness Ltd.
Beer rating: 4.12 out of 5 with 483 ratings
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