Keefe's Irish Stout | Granite Brewery & Restaurant

26 Ratings

Brewed by:
Granite Brewery & Restaurant
Ontario, Canada

Style: Irish Dry Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A rich, malty stout with roasted, chocolate and coffee notes ending in a dry finish.

32 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-23-2003

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 26 |  Reviews: 12
Photo of Glorithm
3.77/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of StormAles
4.51/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of chinchill
3.5/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Keefe's Irish Stout on tap at The Henry House in Halifax where it's sometimes referred to as "Halifax Guinness".
Medium-light body that's smooth and well carbonated but seems a bit to thin.
Clear but very dark ruby colored body with a creamy and very durable head.
Hints of smoke and char. No fruit notes. Moderately bitter.
Lasting aftertaste of very dark roasted grains.

 372 characters

Photo of kevinlater
4.3/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of 4ster
3.92/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of jjboesen
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Coronaeus
3.99/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of zeenzeen
3.55/5  rDev -10.6%

Photo of SchoonerNS
4.9/5  rDev +23.4%

Photo of Bf_89
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of hunterjames
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of Ivanhoes_Backpack
3.25/5  rDev -18.1%

Photo of Lobstertainment
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%

Photo of waiting4lunch
3.5/5  rDev -11.8%

Photo of Wordslinger
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

Photo of liamt07
4.09/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brewpub.

Pours a shade or two off midnight black, couldn't see any light penetrate this at any point. Dense body, and an even denser and creamier mocha head. Heavy retention and lace. Gorgeous stout, even left me with a stout mustache. Nose has some light coffee and caramel, and hint of chocolate. Taste follows, with some sweet caramel and dry, bitter coffee. Thick mouthfeel, and roasty throughout. Creamy going down and great drinkability. Helluva stout, something I pursue every time I visit them. Likely my favourite regular offering of theirs.

 566 characters

Photo of biegaman
3.93/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Volo, in Toronto.

The Irish people are often characterized as having freckly white skin and auburn red hair; their beers for being jet black and possessing a mousy head. Keefe's Irish Stout, though brewed in Canada, definitely looks the part for its name. It is opaque and dense looking, capped with a pasty, white cream. This, art students, is the definition of chiaroscuro.

The aroma is rather quiet and tame relative to higher gravity stouts. For an Irish Dry Stout, however, it has just the right balance between passivity and personality. Its grainy, roasty smell is unwavering, hints of coffee and cocoa just barely slip under the nose as they are scorned by the dense, obtuse scent of roasted barley. It smells mighty tasty.

And indeed, it is! The brewer, to ensure good flavour and mouthfeel, didn't hesitate to splurge on the malt. His heavy-hand has led to a desirable balance between bitter and lightly astringent roasted barley flavours and more lush, palatable notes of unsweetened chocolate. The combination is exceedingly smooth with a lasting aftertaste.

Which is precisely why the beer's acidic, sour mouthfeel stood out to me like a sore thumb. Judges will tell you this is common (if not expected) for the style, but if you ask me this almost lactic, curdled milk-like shot of sourness in an unusual contrast to the otherwise light, creamy texture. Luckily, in the end it detracted none from drinkability.

Warm smiles on rugged faces, green rolling hills, breezy rocky shores, crumbling Celtic vestiges, the polished brass, musty oak and warm fire of the pub - all of Ireland seems to rise in the dark, creamy and roasty sensation of a good stout. Keefe's Irish Stout won't have you seeing shamrocks but it's more than adequate for a good old-fashioned craic.

 1,798 characters

Photo of biboergosum
3.85/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Volo - 45 minute, multiple-inquiry wait for this - the anticipation is palpable...

This beer appears a fuzzy dark brown hue, with minor red highlights, and one finger of creamy white head. It smells of roasted, bready malt, and a bit of milkiness. The taste is dry roasted malt, and some dry orchard fruit. The carbonation is moderate, the body smooth, and on the south side of medium weight, and it finishes off-dry, that creamy milkiness coming back around.

A pretty convincing Guinness/Murphy's analogue, but with the extra hint of milk stout characteristics. Worth the wait? Debatable.

 601 characters

Photo of Viggo
4.18/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Volo for St. Paddy's. Was sure I had reviewed this one before.

Pours a dark reddish black, some light gets through in the edges, very thick and chunky tan head forms, slowly settles down to a thick ring and leaves some generous lacing on the glass.

Smell is nice, dark and roasty, some chocolate, biscuit, caramel sweetness, light bit of raisiny fruit, some oats and toast, a bit of vanilla, light floral, this is somewhere between a dry Irish and an American stout.

Taste is similar, nice vanilla and tobacco notes up front, chocolate, some roastiness, raisin, caramel and a bit of molasses, oats, biscuit and toast, nice roasty bitter finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation. A pretty great stout, has the ABV of a dry Irish with the beefiness of an American stout.

 807 characters

Photo of cratez
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler from the brewery. Took a gamble on this one since I hadn't read anything about it prior to purchasing. I'm glad I picked it up. Impenetrable black body with a sliver of beige head and speckles of lace on the glass. Smell is cooked veggies, a bit of smoke, and burnt ashes. Some musty aromas. Taste is mild roasted malt, coffee, nice mix of butter, caramel, and cream, very British in character. Quick flash of spice from the hops with a juicy prickliness on the palate. Mouthfeel is rich and full-bodied, quite thick for a low ABV beer. It has that lush, chocolaty texture that you find in many imperial stouts. Finishes dry and roasty, kind of chalky, not much bitterness. Great drinker, more complex than your typical Irish stout. Solid offering from Granite.

EDIT: second pour, one day later, produces several new and intriguing subtleties. Fragrant cocoa powder and floral grassy hops on the nose. Coffee taste is much stronger, more espresso-like. I've upped the score to reflect these welcomed changes.

 1,018 characters

Photo of bobsy
4.14/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Finally got around to ordering a pint of this after at least a dozen visits to the brewpub, as well as seeing it elsewhere. Its truly a wonderful looking stout, presenting a jet black body and a large creamy tan head that exhibited excellent retention and laced in sheets. The aroma contained all the typical roasted notes - coffee, chocolate, nuts - but any harshness seemed to be smoothed out suggesting a very drinkable beer would follow. The taste is as refined and balanced as the aroma, with coffee and chocolate playing off against bready malts and cream, and a touch of bitterness in the finish. The body is the thing that really stands out in my memory - its exceptionally full and smooth like the best oatmeal stouts, exhibiting a wonderful depth of texture.

Wow. This beer actually blows me away. Its one of the best Irish Dry Stouts I've had. No... its ones of the best stouts I've had, period. I passed this beer over for too long, but now it will get the respect it deserves.

 990 characters

Photo of Derek
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at the Toronto brewpub.

A: Black, tan head; a little retention, great lace.

S: Roasty (coffee, nuts), dark chocolate, dark bread.

T: Dark bread & chocolate, espresso, nuts, slight grainy astringency, roasted bitterness. Great depth of flavour for a dry stout (especially considering its weight).

M: Moderate body, lightly carbonated, dry acidity.

D: Very enjoyable.

I'm not usually a fan of dry stouts, but thoroughly enjoyed this one.

 461 characters

Photo of Mandrake
4.08/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Sampled at the Halifax branch of the Granite Brewery. Arrives at my table a shade of reddish-brown that's several degrees removed from black, with tons of ruby highlights and a lightish tan head that is thick, creamy, lasts the whole way down the glass, and leaves piles of lacing. Smell is light coffee, with some roasted bitter chocolate and a fair bit of hoppiness. The whole affair is just slightly muted, but shows promise. Taste is really quite hoppy for a stout. The coffee notes are almost overwhelmed at times by the fruity hops, though they certainly manage to make themselves noticed, along with almost burnt flavours and an interesting woody funk that I think is from the yeast strain. Really quite nice, but the hops are just a bit too much, and don't let the complexities shine as much as they ought to. Mouthfeel is creamy, smooth, and full, and drinkability is sensational. A very good session stout that is lively and has some wonderful subtleties, but it has the potential to be quite a bit more. I'd love to see this cranked up a notch or three. I wonder if I could talk the brewers into an RIS....

 1,117 characters

Photo of DrJay
3.82/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pitch black with a mocha head that was extremely dense and produced lots of fine lacing. Good retention. Light roasty aroma with a hint of coffee, milk chocolate and mild vanilla. Very nice. The flavour started with lots of roast, moved on to malty sweetness and vanilla, then finished with hop bitterness in the medium length finish. Initially the flavour was fairly assertive, but it fades somewhat by the finish. The body was a little on the thin side, but is remained quite drinkable. A bit fuller flavour throughout would really make this one stand out from the crowd.

 573 characters

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.2/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a toss up with Best Bitter Special as Granite's best beer.

It pours black with a few amber hints. The head is dark tan and quickly recedes to a ring leaving good lace behind. The aroma is of chocolate and coffee with some hop and roast bitterness. The taste is a rich blend of everything I expect in a good stout. Complex chocolate notes mingle with black coffee, caramel and spicy, citrusy hops. Some astrigency lingers in the finish. This is one of the hoppier dry stouts Ive tried. The mouthfeel is slightly oily and very low in carbonation.

This beer (like most micro stouts) puts Guinness to shame. Its very complex. I definitely have to get more of this.

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Keefe's Irish Stout from Granite Brewery & Restaurant
Beer rating: 3.97 out of 5 with 26 ratings
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