Castle Milk Stout | South African Breweries plc

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Castle Milk StoutCastle Milk Stout

Brewed by:
South African Breweries plc
South Africa

Style: Milk / Sweet Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-13-2003

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Reviews: 30 | Ratings: 49
Photo of WoodBrew
3.89/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I tried the Castle milk stout at The Beerhouse in Sandton. I think BA contributors are being a bit harsh on the stout as I rather liked it. It poured anopaque dark with ecru head that did not leave a lace. The scent carries chocolate. The taste is silky milk chocolate. The Mouthfeel is lighter in body with smooth carbonation. Overall it's not a bad milk stout....very sessionable.

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Photo of kweenb-08
4.16/5  rDev +27.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I really like this beer and wish they had it in the USA. A dark, smooth full bodied flavour that I could drink endlessly! I enjoyed this with roasted red meat as well as smoked fish.

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Photo of captaincoffee
3.58/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The stout to drink when you really don't want a stout. Pours near black with very little head (medium-agressive pour from bottle) that leaves just a trace around the edges. Nose has mild roasted barley notes and a scent that seems to be clearly from the lactose sweetness. Taste is halfway between alager and a stout. Mild roasty notes, but the focus is on drinkability. Overall, not a bad choice if you are throwing down a few and the alternates are BMC, but certainly not a great beer.

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Photo of Jadjunk
3.32/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Castle Milk Stout is brewed in the style of a Milk/Sweet Stout. No label information. This was a Grand Gold Quality Award Winner in 2011 (I'm not familiar with the award system and whether that is even noteworthy), and my first South African Beer. I'm eager to see how stouts brewed in South Africa fare with the American standard.

Poured from a 750 ml. bottle to a pint glass. Served north of 56º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a sudsy light brown head over a dark brown body with deep brown highlights. Lacing is thin and spotty, retention is above average. It's a solid appearance, although the rugged texture of the head is indicative of a far from ambitious malt build. 3.75

(Smell) I can pick up some lactose sweetness here, a pinch of roasted malt and a slick caramel sweetness, a mellow earthy bitterness and a mild acidity. The aroma is considerably clean and led mostly by the lactose sweetness, the remaining factors are pale by comparison. Overall I enjoy the aroma, but am wary that this beer may come off perceived as much sweeter and denser than it actually is. 3.5

(Taste) The flavor falls very thin, coming off much more like a black lager in it's cleanliness, lightness and malt composition, although there are some notable flavor similarities to dry stout selections. Malt selection is a simple, moderately toasted dry caramel malt. Malt sweetness is very low, and lactose sweetness is mild enough to give this beer some boost to the residual sweetness without going overboard and sacrificing drinkability. Most toast and chocolate notes are not notable by the flavor. The biggest consolation is that this is a highly drinkable beer with a light, accessible flavor, perhaps a touch more flavorful than Guinness Draught yet equally quaffable and nearly as lightly flavored. On the whole, it's relatively uninteresting and far too bland and light to the seasoned stout drinker to deem it necessary to revisit. 3.25

(Mouthfeel) Texture is slick and medium-thick with a flat creaminess to it, carbonation is rather tame. Body is light+ for a milk stout, light/medium overall. Alcohol presence is well concealed. Some chalky acidity should be noted as a side product of lactose sweetness. The body is incredibly light for a Milk stout, reminiscent of a drinkable Schwarzbier without the husky bitterness of black patent malt, substituting lactose and caramel syrup for the illusion of body. 3

(Overall) I had some complications with my milk stout expectations and this beer coming to a mutual agreement. Granted, one can notice some lactose sweetness and a halfway-there clean but promising malt build coming on, but it just isn't enough to keep the drink memorable. I'm not overly upset that this beer seems misrepresented as a milk stout to my much-higher stout standards when it clearly comes off as much lighter than that. I appreciate the gift, however (Thanks, Hendricks) and assume that for a South African brewery, perhaps lightly bodied stouts like these are the golden standard, perhaps even... the Budweiser of dark stouts in South Africa? Give it a try if you're ever in Johannesburg! 3.25

South African Breweries plc's
Castle Milk Stout

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Photo of dansmcd
3.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - dark molasses, almost black, thin creamy head and light ring lacing.

S - mild roasted malt aroma, chocolate milk and smoke.

T - follows the nose, just a light, drinkable stout with mild, pleasant but simple flavours.

M - nice and silky smooth, carbonation is right.

O - good starter stout, extremely sessionable.

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Photo of Chrisheartsbeer
3.2/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Quick Review:

Color: Dark murky brown in color.

Smell: Soft coffee notes (very subtle), with more of the roasted malt smell on the back.

Taste: Sweet but not overpowering in the sweetness. The faint hint of chocolate nibs is nice and the milk (which is also subtle) balances is well.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel leaves a bit wanting. A bit thinner than it could be.

Overall: This could be a fantastic beer with more time devoted to developing it more.

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Photo of mdagnew
3.31/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

330ml bottle bought from GapWines, Belfast..

Poured a deep dark brown / almost black colour. Burnt brown head poured pretty thick, foamy and meringue like then faded to light covering with thick edging... some light lines of lacing ring the glass...

Aroma - Toasted bread and lightly roasted malts, some dark brown sugar sweetness, roasted nuttiness, some blackcurrant, raisin and black grape fruitiness, very light oatiness, some faint smokiness coming through, leathery hints...

Taste - Light roasted milk chocolate notes, toasted malt loaf, caramel and molasses sweetness, again some dark berry fruits, light nutmeg traces, grainy notes coming through, quite a lot of sweet nutty hints, some pepperiness...

Feel - Smooth initially then a little sharpness comes through... medium bodied... dangerously quaffable at 6%...

Overall - A decent enough milk stout - might be a little sweet for some though... worth a try..

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Photo of NatalBrewingCo
2.11/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Purchased in Durban South Africa. 340ml bottle poured into a Guinness glass.

a - Pours a dark ruby/black color with a medium but quickly dissipating head.

s - Smells of roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, and sugar.

t - lactose, roasted malts, and chocolate again. More lactose flavor than in the nose. Syrupy sweet.

m - strong body and light carbonation.

o - Credit to SAB for attempting something darker than their standard lagers, however this beer doesn't come off much better than their standard fare. It has an unnatural syrupy sweet flavor that is tolerable once but could be very unpleasant for a session. Unfortunately stouts are very rare in South Africa but if Guinness is available than this an easy pass.

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Photo of katan
3.66/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On can and just about every other form in SA

A - Pours a deep dark brown, amber, to near black. Very amber in the edges. Strong mocha head formation. Breaks down quickly.

S - Lightly yeasty nose with a light amount of milky background. No hops or alcohol is detected.

T - Starts off lightly roasted, smooth and chocolately. Mid-stream gets more roasted, burnt, some yeast breadiness starts to sneak through. In the finish things get cleaner, some alcohol wamrth. Smooth all the way through.

M - Full bodied with a fuller carbonation, slightly stingy. Sugary sweetness is slightly sticky, but otherwise finishes very clean.

O/D - Easy drinking milk stout. Lots of lactose keeps this beer nice and airy. For SA, this beer is extremely potent - but for me I find is very drinkable.

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Photo of drpimento
3.9/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had the good fortune of trying this beer a couple of times around Jozi today. Pours with a large, foamy, uniform tan head and a little lace. Color is a clear, dark mahagoney. Aroma is malt, roast, bit of cocoa, and chestnuts. Flavor is like aroma and is well balanced between bitter, sweet, tang; fleshed out with those flavors as well. Body is good and so is carbonation. Finish is like flavor and of medium length. Very drinkable.

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Photo of vacax
3.75/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pour is black with a generous two finger light brown head, decent retention and lace. Worty sweetness on the nose, some lactose adding to it, balanced with some dry roastiness. Toasty and smooth malt character up front, lightly fruity, sweetness quite subdued, smoothing out the roast nicely until the finish, when it creeps up with a burnt taste. Carbonation is nice, moderate and seems natural, but body is quite light. Overall a decent drinking milk stout, not too sweet, not too roasty, pretty good.

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Photo of Thehuntmaster
3.27/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

340ml bottle 6%

Appearance: A very dark beer, but not quite black, tan brown head that dissipated rather fast, leaving almost no lacing.

Smell: Dark malts, lactose with a hint of toffee, on the whole very appealing.

Taste: Rather disappointing after the smell, the dark malts are nicely present, but the sour lactose are dominant. It rounds off with a rather bitter finish.

Mouth feel: Relatively smooth and mildly creamy.

Drinkability: Well i finished the bottle, a first for an SAB beer, 2 bottles would probably be the limit- but as I said not bad.

To round off not bad - in fact quite good for a mass produced beer, I would love to taste some more beers of this style.

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Photo of ADZA
3.16/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a dark cola colour with nice carbonation that leaves a one finger head that disspates quite fast,it has aromas of dark plums and dark roasted malts,it has an average mouthfeel with a sweet dark roasty malt flavour filling the palette,ive heard this is SA's premier dark brew just glad ive got more choice.

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Photo of stumac
2.25/5  rDev -31%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

I totally dig the bottle...props to my South African brah Onslow's mom for this one...

this brew pours up black with the most beautiful brown head ever! the nose is metallic malts. Now I love Metallica, but not in my beer please. I taste metallic malts, very bitter, not too much "Milk" or sweetness in this stout. medium bodied, high carbo. Not too great. Maybe if I lived in South Africa and this was all I had, it would be better. But I think I'm gonna just mosey on down to the store and pick me up a sixer of Left Hand Milk Stout and call it a day.

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Photo of masgniw
2.34/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

This is one of the only stouts available in South Africa. Heck, it's one of the only non-lagers you can find.

A: Very dark with a deep coffee-brown head that dissipates quickly.

S: Rich nutty tones that are accompanied by coffee and chocolate. Also an acidic bite that will make you scrunch your nose.

T: Starts chocolatey and nutty. Finishes acidic and bitter. All of the flavors seem a lot more overwhelming than other stouts.

M: Well-carbonated and satisfying consistency.

D: Very tough to have more than one in a sitting. The strong characteristics of this beer take its toll on your senses.

Not a bad beer overall. But, there's a lot left to be desired. If all of the flavors were turned down just a notch, I think it would suit the drinker much better.

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Photo of dirtylou
3.03/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

340ml bottle, some liquor shop in Sandton, SA

appearance: pours into a tumbler, dark cola body, thin foamy tan head with light retention

smell: cloudy hop profile, chewy malt sweetness, cocoa powder, light caramel

taste: ah yes wet cardboard...moderate cocoa powder and milky sweetness...i have heard this is the best beer in the nation so wow!

mouthfeel: light, mildly creamy

drinkability: OK

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
3.63/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed with some curried vetkoek from the Biltong Bar in Rustenberg SA. A fine fine meal, and the best Biltong in South Africa. Pours a nice dark color with tan head. Nose is of some malt and copper. A slightly coppery taste as well, and a bit dry for a milk stout. Some roasted malt and a touch of vanilla, but very very watery for a milk stout. I can understand due to the hot climate. An ok brew, but nothing very special. a nice oasis in a sea of macro lagers.

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Photo of akorsak
3.15/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A 12 oz bottle that my sister brought home from a recent visit to South Africa.

A: The stout is a dark brown, pretty much black, concoction. Nothing escapes its darkness. The stout poured with a two finger head that has retained nicely.

S: The nose is an intensely sweet aroma, full of slightly tart lactose. There is also a strangely unpleasant graininess that is quite thin and tinny.

T: The lactose is reasonably strong here, providing a nice acidic kick that stands up against the dark malts. The body is dry, contrasting nicely with the lactose sweetness.

M: The mouthfeel is sour with the strength of the lactose. It's not the best milk stout but it is serviceable.

D: One bottle is enough. The flavors mix nicely but they are restrained and thin.

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Photo of Jredner
3.9/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Courtesy of SSBrennan. Body is black with a lasting, thumb thick head that is tan and creamy. Mild detergent, toasted grains and sweet malt. Mildly thin body, but not alarmingly so. Sweet molasses/cane sugar fore with milf roast notes, chocolate. Some sugar and cream notes, but no coffee. Finishes with a mild burnt bitterness. Not bad really.

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Photo of SSBrennan
3.55/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

The beer pours a deep dark brown with a dense tan head that leaves no lacing.

The smell is roasted malt and bitter with the bitter hops dominant but not particularly complex.

The beer tastes strongly of bittering hops but overall is a little bland. None of the sweetness I expected. It almost reminds me more of a dry stout. As it warms the beer shows more complex flavors with sweeter malt evident.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin and lacking the richness one would hope for.

The relatively light body of the beer and its clean taste lends itself to being highly sessionable.

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Photo of Onslow
4.12/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Being from SA, my scores are higher than most, but this beer has good memories attached to it, plus when you have it fresh, it can shine! A delicious dark beer with a nice thick head at the start. A true stout with a almost woody-smoke smell and a delicious full flavor. It's a truly delicious South African Stout classic!

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Photo of hunteraw
3.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

What a refreshing change from the widely distributed beers you see everywhere in South Africa! Yes, it's an SAB product, but it's solid and such a relief when you're tired of drinking AML.

Appearance: interestingly, I had two cans of this in one sitting (and many bottles later), but each can was a different color. I'm not sure if this is marketing, or that one can was older than the other. Pours an opaque black, small tan head. Garnet highlights at the bottom of the glass and good lacing.

Smells roasty, with a hint of sweetness. Tastes pretty good, according to the label there's maize in here but I can't pick it up on my palate. Roast, a bit of lactose sweetness, and a hint of coffee at the finish.

Finishes well, mouthfeel is a little light for the style, appropriately mildly carbonated, though, which helps. Drinkable stuff, and a welcome alternative to the macro lagers that are much more widely available. It's a shame this one doesn't have a wider distribution.

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Photo of Pilch217
3.27/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

the rating has to be made in relative terms to the offerings of where its being drank. whenever it was being sold in tanzania, it was a no brainer. interesting thought - this and some generic bailey's and generic whiskey made our own personal Tanzanian car bombs! they were suprisingly good, i recommend mixing and matching at your personal pleasure. castle milk stout is a solid brew, nothing expectional but quite enjoyable

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Photo of jahsausage
3.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

[my 340ml bottle was 6.0% alc/vol]

When poured this beer is a deep brown, I hesitate to call it "Black" because Light still shows through it. The head shrinks quickly and is maybe a little insubstantial but is definitely a lot more long lived than many other beers. The smell is mild but definitely shows hints of the roasted/burnt coffeish aromas one would expect from the style. The first impression/suprise is the relatively thin mouthfeel and restrained taste, the bottle alleges "a touch of bitterness" which is about right. As it is a milk stout one would expect it to be a bit sweeter than average and this is definitely the case.

It is a pleasant drink, it hides its strength well, I think I would have rated it higher if it had not claimed to be a stout and instead had called itself a "dark ale" or some such. On the other hand, my main experience with Stouts has been with Irish-style "Dry Stouts" so I wouldn't be suprised if I am judging this beer with the wrong criteria.

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Photo of donnebaby
3.3/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Despite the bottle talking about the incredible head I would be witness to, there was only random haze after moments. Black still body, served quite cold. Smell was hard to detect, and didn't arrive even after warming, only some spots of molassas and alcohol.

Taste was light malts in a smooth thick body, with a certain sweetness that lasted. Trace hops. Medium carbonation. Light for a stout I felt, and smooth to the point of being boring. Drinkable nonetheless.

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Castle Milk Stout from South African Breweries plc
3.26 out of 5 based on 49 ratings.
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