Steam Engine Stout | Mountain Town Brewing Co.

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Steam Engine StoutSteam Engine Stout

Brewed by:
Mountain Town Brewing Co.
Michigan, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.40%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bung on 01-17-2009

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Reviews: 39 | Ratings: 86
Photo of semibaked
1.68/5  rDev -52.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Poured this into a pint glass.

Been wanting to try this as I like their Cow Catcher Red

A - Dark with some little shining through, with a little bit of head that disappears quickly.

S - A bit on the sour side, not what I was hoping or expecting, but some malts and sweetness comes through.

T - Sour and almost spoiled, I don't know if this is infected or old but really bad.

M - Decent mouthfeel but hard to get around the taste.

D - Drinikability is low because of the nasty taste.

Maybe it is just a band bottle but I certainly can't recommend it.

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Photo of Yetiman420
2.04/5  rDev -41.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Pours dark brown with very little carbonation and a resulting thin white head that quickly fades leaving some lacing.

Aroma is heavy on malt sweetness. Not very good for an imperial stout. Expecting more roasted malt aroma, not overwhelming sweetness.

First sip, not good. Watery finish with no mouthfeel. This is weak for a porter. I suspect this may be incorrectly classified as a double/imperial stout.

Second sip, getting worse. Some sourness present on the finish. Still comes across as thin and watery.

Swirling and pulling hard to get some hints of roasted aroma.

Acidic finish and the beer lacks any complexity or dimension.

$1.35 not well spent and am dumping this one out halfway through.

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Photo of BMoney575
2.28/5  rDev -35%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Sampled on 2-15-09

Pours thick and black, with a little bit of deep red around the edges. No real head, but decently thick lacing.

Smell is very roasty, smoky and sweet. Reminds me of a Guiness, in a good way.

Taste is a lot like the smell, but the flavors combine to create a strange, almost sour quality. Very odd, and disgusting.

Mouthfeel is way too thin for the malty flavors.

Drinkability sucks as a direct result of the taste.

Overall, don't try.

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Photo of Bung
2.9/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle. Dark brown/black pour with a smallish off white head. Just a slight bit of lacing. Aromas are pretty roasty, malt and coffee. Tastes roast malt, hint of mocha and smoke. A little unpleasant sour bitterness. Not sure how or why they classify this as an Imperial. This had potential, I'm wondering if I distorted this one with some temperature changes bringing it home from Michigan.

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Photo of lurpy1
2.94/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Very standard looking stout, brownish/black, bit o head.

Smell....hmmm....kinda p-u-ey. There's coffee and malt in there, but there's also something kinda oogey. Leathery, animal, bad breath. What the hell is that?

Taste is more on track, picking up coffee and maybe some licorice. Acceptable. But this is too damn thin and flat for the style.

Not really a disaster but also not great and maybe not even good. I have had some stellar stouts/porters lately, so maybe this beer is damned by the company it keeps. With the number of good stouts out there it's tough to recommend this one. I wish Mt Pleasant the best, but Michigan's a great beer state with lots of competition, and judging by this beer, Mt Pleasant has some work to do to measure up.

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Photo of paco1029384756
3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown color with a very small light tan head and good lacing.

Scent of chocolate, raisins, roasted malts, and some coffee. Has a nice balance and decent strength.

Taste of earth, roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, and water. A bit light on flavor for a Stout, the flavor it has washes through the mouth quickly. The slightly spicy finish is somewhat unpleasant.

Mouthfeel is light bodied and slick.

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Photo of chinchill
3.12/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle, presumably 2013, with a twist cap served in a snifter.
Poured a very dark mahogany; clear with a small tan head that soon vanished; nearly no lacing.

The appealing aroma is mainly of dark malts; slightly smokey with hints of dark fruits and roasted nuts.

Taste: Rich and lightly smokey, with touches of bitter chocolate and expresso. Roasted grains struck me as a bit too earthy and burnt. The burnt quality is responsible, in part, for making this "sweet stout" more bitter than sweet, and leaving a burnt grain aftertaste.

M: medium body with a low carbonation level.

O: Unfortunately, does not taste as good as it smells. Disappointing.

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Photo of biegaman
3.25/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Steam Engine Stout is about the same colour as asphalt and it shares about the same degree of transparency as well. Only against bright light does its less stark tone of cola-brown become apparent, highlighted in both the upper and lower trims of the beer. The head is minuscule and despite constant agitation refuses to nest anywhere but along the outer circumference. Traces of it, however, do become jelled to the glass.

The aroma does contain a breath of what you'd hope to find in a stout - coffee, chocolate, roast malts - but it also provides you with an equal amount of stuff you really could do without; a sort of black licorice tainted lactose and a dash of poor-quality homemade red wine seem to creep into the picture every so often. It's nothing repugnant, not at all, but I get the feeling that if I keep sniffing at this rate I'm bound to get a headache.

There was also an unusual dark berry sort of note in the aroma, something akin to elderberry, that I was very much looking forward to finding in the flavour. Unfortunately, it never shows. There is perhaps a speck of blackberry-like taste but I can't be totally sure it isn't just my own wishful thinking. Apart from some stale (and cheap) coffee and some cheap (and stale) chocolate there really isn't much to be tasting.

Fortunately, the mouthfeel is in good standing. It is adequately roasty with a slightly burnt ground-up coffee bean kind of tinge. The resulting astringency is well contained by a proper bittersweet quality. The body is medium-light which is acceptable for the style; this is the kind of stout suited to the pint glass rather than the snifter. Indeed, I could have done with a full pint, and finished it in decent time too, but a second I'd certainly forgo.

A stout is a hard thing to screw up; it really need not be complex and the only provider of flavour need be the malts. It's simple really: just take some dark and/or roasted malts and throw them in the kettle - done. Generally speaking, as long as your beer has some roasted malt profile you've succeeded. Mt. Pleasant hasn't failed, there is some roast to be sure, but it doesn't strike me as profoundly malty (and there is certainly no hops).

Since this was my first Mt. Pleasant beer I felt I owed them the benefit of the doubt. Given the plainness of the simple stout I reckoned this one could just be chalked up to a mediocre and humdrum style... That is until I remembered Rogue's Shakespeare Stout, the Sierra Nevada Stout, Mill Street's Cobblestone and Bell's Kalamazoo - some of my all-time favourite beers - and realized that no, I won't lower my standards, Mt. Pleasant should raise theirs.

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Photo of buschbeer
3.28/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz bottle
Served in a pint glass

A - It pours very dark brown with three inches of tan head.

S - There is not a big nose on this one. I get some dark chocolate and some roasted malt.

T - The taste is somewhat bitter roasted malt. It's not black coffee bitterness. Maybe unsweetened chocolate.

M - It is smooth and creamy.

O - It is kind of burnt and bitter tasting, but not the worst thing in the world.

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Photo of ThatWineGuy
3.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Huge four finger head, mocha and foamy. Opaque inky with good retention is never less than two fingers with sticky lace. Smells of espresso, burnt coffee. Strong coffee bean taste with mild astringency, toasted malt impressions. There is a long finish but it'snot particularly pleasing, for some reason this doesn't seem to sit as well as it should. Body is pretty substantial, heavy on the palette without offering quite enough in the way of flavour. Overall, this has some good things going for it but has a dinstincly sour aftertaste that compromises the finsh.

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Photo of Dalem
3.36/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Very dark in color. Almost black actually if it wasn't for the slight bit of light that peeks around the edges giving the look a bit of a brown luminescent glow. A half inch head melts away pretty quickly and leaves minimal lacing behind.
Chocolate and smoke can be detected in the scent but neither of them really jump out. It takes a couple of deep whiff's to detect them but while doing so there's also something akin to blackberries that comes out as well. There is a bit more going on in the flavor department though. Roasted malt is on the front end followed by dark chocolate and ends with a slight hoppiness.
The brew itself is a bit thinner than some of the other stouts but that made it pretty easy to go down.

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Photo of Northsider
3.43/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This is my favorite beer I had from Mt Pleasant, on tap at their brewery.

Appearance is dark brown/black with little to no head.

Smell was of typical roasted malts, chocolate and coffee

Taste was of dark chocolate and coffee, bitterness comes out at the end.

Mouthfeel is smooth and refreshing.

Overall the best selection from Mt Pleasant. For a stout though it fall a bit flat

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Photo of divineaudio
3.44/5  rDev -2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle into a tulip

pours a standard deep dark brown and forms a pinky of coarse, tan head that disappears pretty fast. i get a few spots of lace here and there.

smells of roasted malt, molasses and raisin. maybe a hint of chocolate too. taste follows with big roasted character and notes of dark fruit. has a cola like sweetness to it and hop character is mild at best.

fuller in body with prickly carbonation.

not really a session beer but pretty good overall. would buy it again but i wouldn't go out of my way for it.

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Photo of bishopdc0
3.45/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The look is good black, with a decent head formation, thick and slightly tan in color. The head dissipates but wisps remain.

The aroma is pleasant and typical stout but its dark chocolate and roasted notes make it stand out.

The taste is unfortunately average. The taste of malt and dark chocolate hit up front but a lack of roasted flavor make this seem more porter like but still lacking. I can't complain but just would like better.

The mouth is smooth better then the taste unfortunately leaves a sweetness with a lack of dry due to no roasted flavor.

There are good points to this beer one being it goes down easy and at 6.4% for a stout i would go back for it but I wouldn't seek it out

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Photo of GRPunk
3.45/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Short-neck bottle poured into a mug.

A- A very conservative pour left 2-3 fingers of pillowy, brown head cresting the glass. After a couple of their beers, I'm wondering if there are over-carbonation issues. The body was a brown-black with reddish hues at the edges and evidence of heavy carbonation. The head eventually drops and sustains at about 1-finger and leaves good sticky rings on a glass that normally doesn't do any favors for presentation.

S- It's pleasantly roasty, almost smokey, at first. The usual suspects for a stout, chocolate and a little coffee, are in the background. Hops play a very minor role (I think they want to be citrusy, but are a bit lost).

T- Much as the aroma suggests. Bold, roasted malts dominate. Roasted qualities almost become smokey. Hints of dark chocolate poke through. It' pretty good, if not a little one-dimensional.

M- It's a little grainy/chalky, which isn't necessarily bad. It reminds you that you're drinking a full-bodied beer. There's a little too much carbonation for a stout, but it seems to mellow with time and warmth.

D- While flavorful, there isn't a whole lot going on. I could see being able to drink a couple in a sitting. It's something I'd drink again, but not something I'm going to seek out.

Definitely better than the berry beer by the same brewer. I'd like to try some more of their stuff to see how good they really are.

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Photo of bfflo
3.47/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured a glassy, cola-black with ruby edges and an abnormally high amount of foam and fizz. Huge low-density off-white head, not unlike a cola. Smell is sharp burnt roasted grain with chocolate notes. Fizzy with high-grain taste on the front end; strong roasted notes; this gives way to a malted, foamy, kind of nondescript middle, and a dry note in the finish. Mouthfeel is sort of sloppy, wet, and foamy, but each time I swallow this reminds me a little of an Irish Dry. It's drinkable enough, nothing I can't enjoy, but it's too fizzy and one-dimensional, begging for a little more character in the flavor profile. I'd probably give it a B- as opposed to the C+ BA calculates it out at, but while not really bad, you can find much better out there.

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Photo of Tone
3.5/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a black color. 1/4 inch head of a tan color. Good retention and slight lacing. Smells of roasted malt, sweet malt, slight hop, and slight oatmeal. Fits the style of an American Stout. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp with an average carbonation level. Tastes of roasted malt, sweet malt, and a hint of hop. Overall, good body and blend.

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Photo of Vonerichs
3.53/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown, almost black. Two fingers of tan head.

Light smells of cocoa, root beer, and burnt malt.

Decent flavor, but weak. The burnt malt takes the lead with a touch of molasses.

Thick, but overly carbonated for a stout. It's not as creamy as I desire.

A decent stout, but nothing special about it.

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Photo of Brenden
3.54/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

This one is quite a dark brown, but it does let some light in. It seems to have a pretty firm body that falls within style. The head is a tight sandy cap about half a finger high with greater than average retention and lace.
Malts are firm in the nose, a light roastiness with some sweeter notes and some dark fruits in the end. There's something a little drier but still meaty in the middle, almost like walnut. There's a bit of milk chocolate leaning toward bittersweet with some char into the end. In the flavor, it goes a little light for a stout, but it works pretty well.
The body isn't as full or robust as it could be but it isn't terribly weak either. It hits the bigger end of medium, though it lets up a little at the end, and I might take just a touch of crispness off of this one.

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Photo of gmfessen
3.65/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this one up in a mix-a-six at the brewery while in town for my sister's graduation at CMU. Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, Steam Engine Stout is black in the glass with only the faintest highlights of deep brown/ruby color when held up to the light and a deep mocha colored head. The nose is a nice mixture of roasted coffee, burnt chocolate and sweet molasses. The flavor follows suit, burnt chocolate comes to the forefront, a nice malty sweet middle and an acrid dryness and slightly unpleasant bitterness that finishes out the sip. The mouthfeel is a medium to full body with minimal carbonation, definitely dry on the finish. Overall, drinkable but not my favorite stout either. I would like to think this would be better if I had it on tap.

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Photo of tbryan5
3.69/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A nice solid and Roasty stout. Medium carb with a lighter mouthfeel. It's nothing crazy but it doesn't have to be. This is just a nice well done stout. Glad I received it in a trade.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.71/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Looks nice, though the head falls fast. Nose is entirely uneventful. So I am guessing the flavor is going with this whole steam engine thing? Smoky, thick, rustic. Quite hearty. I like the tones on this one, and the delivery of flavor is consistent. A pretty nice stout.

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Photo of mgbickel
3.72/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Perfect Pint glass. The aggressive pour developed a 1/2 finger, creamy tan head. The foam receded quickly...very little lace present. The body is dark brown-black with ruby edges.

The nose has roasted malts and creamed coffee up front. You can detect some dark fruits and molasses in the background. *Side note: I reset my molasses calibration wife bought a jar to make cookies with my daughter!*

The taste is in line the nose. Unfortunately, this one gets weaker as the beer warms. Sweeter at first and more roasted toward the finish.

The mouth feel is on the lighter side of medium with mild to moderate carbonation.

This is pretty drinkable, but nothing really jumps out at you. Worth a try, but not going out of your way for.

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Photo of gordavidson
3.73/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is not an American Double Stout. It is an American Stout.

A- A very dark brown with only a bit of clarity when held to a light. The head is a light tan, thin, but a little creamy looking.

S- Very smoky and chocolaty. Kind of sweet smelling, but pretty enjoyable.

T- Pretty smoky, with some nice chocolate notes in there. Pretty clean tasting with just a bit of nutty bitterness in the tail end.

M- Very smooth and pretty creamy with a great carbonation level. Impressive.

D- A solid stout. Something nice from a new brewery. I don't picture the ABV being any higher than 6.5%. I wish I saw this around more often.

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Photo of SerialTicker
3.73/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

23912535 on the short-neck bottle, so I assume it means it was made 239th day of 2012... poured into a S.A. Perfect Pint glass. This is my second beer from the company after Train Wreck Ale, which I thought was average-ish.

Appearance: Black. If held up to light, ruby black. Two finger head goes away pretty quickly, but a tan ring remains on top of the beer. Lacing is weak. Above average looking beer.

Smell: Right up there with "the big boys" -- a very pleasant roasted malt aroma... maybe with some dark chocolate and coffee smells as well.

Taste/feel: I tend to think porters have a lighter mouthfeel, but maybe that's in my head, since stouts and porters seem to be intertwined. The feel is thin and quite carbonated, but I'm fine with that, personally. The taste is a lot like the smell -- a lot of that roast, which is of a pretty surprising quality, if I could be so honest. As the beer warms up a bit, some more sweetness comes through. A surprisingly good stout from a "where the hell brewed this?" brewery.

These are actually the sorts of stouts I enjoy drinking. They aren't too heavy, and they have a solid flavor. Nice roast flavor in this one, and easy to drink. A great entry stout, I'd think -- enjoyable, for sure. Honestly? I like this more than Bell's Kalamazoo Stout. Sue me.

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Steam Engine Stout from Mountain Town Brewing Co.
3.51 out of 5 based on 86 ratings.
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