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Gingerbread Stout | Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

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Gingerbread StoutGingerbread Stout
BA SCORE
4.3/5
Outstanding
1,398 Ratings
Gingerbread StoutGingerbread Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Virginia, United States
hardywood.com

Style: Milk / Sweet Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Brewed with baby ginger from Casselmonte Farm and wildflower honey from Bearer Farms, Hardywood Gingerbread Stout captures the terroir of central Virginia in a rich, creamy libation with a velvety mouthfeel and an intriguing evolution of flavors from milk chocolate and vanilla to honeycomb and cinnamon to a snap of ginger in the finish.

Deep, dark chocolate in color with a mahogany tint and a frothy, caramel colored head, Hardywood Gingerbread Stout offers aromatics of holiday spice originating from the ginger, and balanced with a generous dose of whole Madagascar bourbon vanilla beans and Vietnamese cinnamon. Milk sugar (lactose) contributes to the full body of this stout and tames its roasty character, while oats lend a silky quality. Enjoy fresh, or cellar for a special occasion. We hope Hardywood Gingerbread Stout contributes to your merriment this season.

55 IBU

Added by TechTriumph on 12-08-2011

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#570
Reviews:
196
Ratings:
1,398
pDev:
11.16%
Bros Score:
4.72
 
 
Wants:
650
Gots:
499
Trade:
56
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,398 |  Reviews: 196
Photo of oriolesfan4
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of metter98
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of BEERchitect
4.23/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Coming off of the heels of the recent holiday season where a few of these "gingerbread" stouts emerged, I found myself discrediting the combination of taste as being underwhelming at best or even messy. But Hardywood has taught me something else- maybe these varying flavors can marry up pretty well.

But like many a stout, the beer pours with a very dark black, seeming darker than I expected somehow. Its mocha froth caps the beer with a sturdy foam stance that outlasts the beer in the session and laces evenly 'til the last sip.

Though the stout flavors are certainly strong enough to qualify, it is edged out by the desert scent of gingerbread snaps. Molasses, ginger, clove, nutmeg, and graham cracker all align on the nasal cavity just the same way as baking the snaps themselves. But underneath all that are the stout-like aromas of strong roast coffee, baker's chocolate, candy shops, and burnt bread.

Flavors are more balanced than the nose let on so that the melange of taste starts sweet and ends spicy. Molasses, confectioner's sugar, and heavy whipping cream allows for a creamy sweet taste of pulled candy and marzipan to start the show. Roasted elements of French-press coffee, sweetened cocoa, roasted almonds, and burnt grain all rise closely behind and give a robust flavor to balance the initial sweetness. And then all of those Christmas spices settle in as the roast trails for a strong and seductive medley.

Firm support for all that roast and spice has got to come from more than just the caramelized grain sweetness and starch. The "milk" portion of the beer wraps around the carbonation and gives the beer its milkshake-like consistency. The beer's support holds strong until very deep in the session where coffee-like bitterness, spicy warmth, and an echo of molasses brings the beer to closure.

The beer works because it is a stout first. Knowing that the dryness will expose flaws in taste and throw off the balance, it is propped up with an enormously creamy texture and taste- proving to this skeptic that stout and gingerbread can indeed play nicely with one another.

 2,105 characters

Photo of emerge077
3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Thanks to Jeremy for this one!
Pours a dark brown with tan foam that fades after a few minutes. Graham cracker, cinnamon, honey aromas. Tastes a little more stouty, though the ginger and cinnamon come out in spades. Light to medium bodied, a little thin but drinkable enough. Good festive holiday beer. Makes a good mixer with a coffee imperial stout.

 351 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours fudge brown with an inch or so of foam; a few strands of lace are left behind

Smell: Chocolate and gingerbread, chocolate and gingerbread etc., honeyed tones underneath

Taste: Black bread and milk chocolate with a developing gingerbread and honey character; in the middle, the gingery-gingerbread character really dominates, though the milk chocolate tones linger underneath through the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation; a bit less carbonated on tap, which is better for this brew

Overall: I heard good things about this beer from hoppedup (for those who remember him from this site) and decided to drive to Richmond for the release; glad I did as this is a great beer and is nicely differentiated from a lot of the other big stouts that get released around these parts

 822 characters

Photo of oline73
4.05/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: The beer pours an opaque dark brown with over a finger of creamy off white head. The head sticks around pretty well.

Smell: Rather sweet with some roast. Mild spices, perhaps some clove, ginger, and nutmeg.

Taste: There isn't as much spice as I would have expected, but that's not a bad thing. It's got a creamy sweetness to it along with a nice level of roast. There is some gingerbread spice, but it more compliments the beer flavor.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the thicker side and the carbonation is very smooth and creamy. The finish is on the dry side.

Overall: This is a nice desert beer. It's not as spice forward as I expected, but I enjoyed it.

 714 characters

Photo of SocalKicks
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev -7%

Photo of superspak
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into snifter, no bottle dating. Pours opaque dark brown/black color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense and fluffy dark khaki head with great retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big milk chocolate, cocoa, coffee, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, clove, vanilla, caramel, cream, honey, brown sugar, molasses, toasted oats, biscuit, and dark/brown bread; with lighter notes of raisin, plum, herbal, pepper, and roast/toasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of dark/roast/bready malts and spice notes; with big strength. Taste of big milk chocolate, cocoa, coffee, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, clove, vanilla, caramel, cream, honey, brown sugar, molasses, toasted oats, biscuit, and dark/brown bread; with lighter notes of raisin, plum, herbal, pepper, and roast/toasted earthiness. Light roast/char and herbal/peppery spice bitterness on the finish. Lingering notes of milk chocolate, cocoa, coffee, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, clove, vanilla, caramel, cream, honey, brown sugar, molasses, toasted oats, biscuit, dark/brown bread, herbal, pepper, and roast/toasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malts and flavors; with an awesome roasted bitter/sweet and peppery spice balance; with zero acrid/astringent flavors after the finish. Light dryness from bitter/spiciness, lightly increasing through the glass. Medium carbonation and medium-full body; with a very smooth, creamy/silky, and lightly sticky/chalky balanced mouthfeel that is awesome. Minimal warming alcohol for 9.2%; with a touch if increasing ginger heat through the glass. Overall this is a fantastic spiced imperial stout! All around outstanding complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malts and spice flavors; very smooth and dangerously easy to sip on for the big ABV. Pretty much perfectly balanced between stout and spice flavors. Not super roasty/charred for a stout; but adequate to still feel like a stout, and let the spices have a nice showcase. A highly enjoyable offering.

 2,209 characters

Photo of Boone757
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of Kurmaraja
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of mothman
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Tan head. Black in color.

I was surprised that I enjoyed this one as much as I did. Tastes like gingerbread cookies. Sweet. Chocolate and cocoa.

Medium to full bodied. A little roast. Ends spiced.

Nice beer. Very fun to try!

 228 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.65/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Hardywood gingerbread stout shared at RBWG-2014

Slight harshness/burn from the ginger.

Aroma is balanced, with a moderate dose of ginger.

The ginger is way more pronounced in the mouth. I did adjust as I drank but it still seemed a bit overdone even at the end.

Full body.

 276 characters

Photo of dbrauneis
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jlindros
4.46/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks again to rudzud, who seems like my beer sharing partner now, for sharing this.

Pours a big fluffy head that fades at a med pace, lots of soapy lacing, pretty much pitch black beer.

Nose brings pumpkin gourd like... weird. Then lots of gingerbread, plenty of the cookie as well, ginger spice, cinnamon and other spices, dark chewy malts, ginger snap like aromas, hint of chocolate, a light toasty. It's pretty much like a gingerbread cookie, so nice.

Taste is again pure ginger! Ginger snap and gingerbread cookie again. Light candy, bready, sweet syrupy malts, chewy, maple candy even. Fresh ginger is there even, but a lot of gingerbread cookie, sweet sugar candy, cinnamon and brown sugar as well, and just a bit of bitterness. Finish is sweet candy, gingerbread cookie, and straight sugar cookie, candy sugar, and just a bit of earthy bitter hops.

Mouth is fuller bodied, decent carb, no real booze warmth surprisingly hidden well.

Overall a great beer, so much gingerbread cookie it's ridiculous, a great amazing beer that I wish I had a couple cases in the cellar and I might try to find some, except that i don't think this will hold up. Thanks again Matt!

 1,178 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.5/5  rDev -18.6%

Photo of nickfl
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of Rifugium
3.35/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Sam for the trade at the BBGBS release!

Refrigerated for about 5-10 minutes before serving. Poured into a Hardywood goblet, a dark brown color, lighter around the edges, with about two fingers of beige head that dwindled to a thick ringlet. This was very strange. At first, the aroma was very acrid and it seemed oxidized to me, with a bit of ginger, cinnamon, and caramel coming through. After letting it sit for a while, this changed quite dramatically, becoming more full of gingerbread cookie, vanilla icing and all, the harshness almost completely removed. The taste was extremely bitter up front. Extremely bitter. There was a definite gingerbread cookie sensation in there, but the bitterness overwhelmed it completely, and again, there seemed to be off-flavors indicative of oxidation. So I let it sit some more. The cookie-ness came out a bit more, but it was still quite bitter and stale, woody and kind of unpleasant, all the way into the aftertaste. It's almost as if a good, yummy cookie flavor wants to come to the forefront, but it just never gets there. Body was about medium, a bit thin for a stout...more like an English stout, or even a brown ale; fairly smooth, but just too harsh in flavor to be enjoyable. I can't imagine these bottles being bad already. The alternative theory is....this is just another over-hyped beer. Not impressed.

 1,369 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.75/5  rDev -12.8%

Photo of vfgccp
3.9/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of billab914
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle poured into my Devil's Backbone snifter. Black in color with a thick tan foam filling the top inch of the glass. Nice head retention and very good lacing.

Aroma has a very appealing mix of spices with notes of cinnamon, ginger and brown sugar. I get some chocolate to it which really compliments well. It really comes together well, it smells pretty much like a delicious Christmas cookie.

The taste shows a little more dark chocolate and molasses presence to it. The spices come out more in the finish leaving a very nice ginger bread flavor lingering. Again, it comes together very well and the flavors are all complimenting of each other.

The mouthfeel is a little thin feeling for the style and carbonation is above average. The carbonation seems to work with the spices though.

Overall, I thought t was a great beer and I especially loved the uniqueness of it. I thought everything came together almost perfectly in it. They managed to completely capture a gingerbread cookie in a glass without overdoing it on the sweetness or spices. I'm not usually big on spiced beers but this one is easily the best holiday spiced beer I've had. Would love to drink more of this around the holidays.

 1,213 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.3/5  rDev 0%

Photo of atrocity
3.75/5  rDev -12.8%

Gingerbread Stout from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 4.3 out of 5 with 1,398 ratings
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