Vernal Minthe Stout | Ska Brewing Co.

47 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Vernal Minthe StoutVernal Minthe Stout

Brewed by:
Ska Brewing Co.
Colorado, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by brentk56 on 03-23-2013

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50  | next → last
Reviews: 47 | Ratings: 198
Photo of Trifecta1
4.16/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served from a can into a Guinness pint glass.

A - Very dark brown, but can see through peripheries with light, and while pouring. Really frothy, foamy head, much like a Guinness. Leaves some cool lacing.

S - Man, mint, cocoa, sweetness, and malt. Heavy on the peppermint. Smells incredible.

T - Lovely, refreshing, unique. Sweet, minty, and malty, in order of prominence. Not much smoke to speak of, but it does make an appearance near the end. Milk chocolate with peppermint in the beginning, melting into a vanilla and spearmint finish. Makes your breath feel cold like a real peppermint candy.

M - Creamy, smooth, quaffable. Slightly sticky, because it's so sweet, and it works. Really nice cooling feeling on your throat and mouth.

Why the hell is this rated like this? I'd expect no less than 90 from this offering. It's great, and will definitely be picking up more soon.

 882 characters

Photo of Fcolle2
3.32/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours dark black with half finger tan head. nearly no light passes through and it appear thick.

Nose is dominated by mint. Some dark malt pulls through but it is hard to detect through all the mint.

Not sure how I feel about the taste. It starts with a heafty amount of roasted malt but quickly gets overshadowed by mint that overlays every aspect of what could otherwise be a complex beer.

Mouthfeel is good for a stout, thick and creamy with a fair amount of carbonation.

 477 characters

Photo of falloutsnow
3.71/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From: Binny's, Bloomingdale, IL
Date: Best by 2013-05-13
Glass: New Belgium globe glass

I was afraid this would taste like a peppermint chocolate, but fortunately it does not. The overall effect is appetizing, though a bit thin in both roasted flavor and weight for a stout. One I'm glad to have tried, and think the style has promise, but not sure I'd check out this particular beer again.

Pours a 1.5cm tall head of khaki-colored foam, made up of small-sized bubbles. Retention is average, the foam lasting about one minute as it declines to a thin ring around the glass. Lacing is modest, a few lines and spots cling to the sides of the glass. Beer is a dark brown to black in color, opaque, carbonation visibly rising from the bottom and sides of the glass, with light bringing out dark brown-orange-red colorings in the body.

Aroma of mint and roasted malt, highly sweetened chocolate and coffee with a bit of subtle astringency. Smells somewhat candy-like, more like a Frango mint than a peppermint patty, the roasted malts and barley increasing in prominence slightly as the beer warms.

Front of palate detects sweetness, roasted malt, cocoa, and fairly strong spearmint and peppermint flavors. Mid-palate is of murky roasted malt, sweetened chocolate, and spearmint flavoring; good, but not as exciting as the aroma as the stout base seems a bit thin. Back of palate picks up continued mint with increased sharpness, largely overpowering the roasted malt and sugary chocolate flavors. Aftertaste of continued spearmint with light roasted malt, chocolate, and watery coffee.

Beer is medium to medium-light in body, with medium-low levels of carbonation, leading to a smooth, slightly foamy, slightly creamy mouthfeel that's generally appropriate for the style; perhaps a bit thin. Closes semi-dry, with light residual stickiness on the palate.

 1,856 characters

Photo of atomic
4.65/5  rDev +25%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

From a can poured into a Firestone Walker Teku

One seriously under appreciated beer right here. This definitely caught me by surprise.

Looks like a stout. Pitch black, minimal head that doesn't stick around and leaves no lacing.

Smells amazing. Tons of mint and some vanilla dominate everything else.

Never had a mint stout before this, I can't imagine they're all this good because it doesn't seem to be a common style. The mint is forward but very mellow. Also some subtle vanilla notes but too sweet.

The only thing about this that isn't perfect is the carbonation. Not especially bad, just I feel this beer could be better from a nitro carbonation. It would be more fitting for the mellow flavors of the mint and vanilla.

Overall, a knockout beer that deserves a better score than it has.

 802 characters

Photo of polktheimpressionist
4.73/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I bought this at a Snyder's in my home town on a "build your own" rack. The can craze has me intrigued right now so any chance I get to try a new brew in a can, I take it. The name caught my interest and when I saw the list of ingredients it peaked! I chilled it, as I do most stouts, to about 40 degrees. It has a beautiful dark brow to almost back color. A mild froth for a head with little to no lace. This is the first beer I have ever had that has any type of mint and I must say, it is amazing! You can smell both the vanilla and mint upon pouring and the cool, refreshing mint undertones pairs fantastically with the bold, robust stout contrast. I recommend this to ANY stout lover.

 689 characters

Photo of LambicPentameter
3.93/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Enjoyed out of a 12 oz aluminum can with the distinctive Ska label art. Poured into a 16 oz tumbler glass.

Appearance - Strong pour yields a towering head of two and a half fingers. The color is light walnut creamy brown and is made of small bubbles with an occasional larger bubble sprinkled throughout. Retention is excellent and leaves sticky mottled lacing around the glass. Body is opaque and black, with hues of cola at the edges.

Smell - Herbal, spearmint and some medicinal qualities layered in with smooth, rich chocolatey characteristics and vanilla-like sweetness and hints of roasted walnuts.

Taste - Not quite as sweet as the smell, as here the minty notes mellow out the flavor so that it's sweet without being cloying. The chocolate characteristics are smoother, with almost no roasty characteristics.

Mouthfeel - Clean and smooth, but a little bit viscous and syrupy. Lingers in the mouth after swallowing, with a sweet finish. Medium body and carbonation.

Overall, a strange, but rather tasty beer for the right situation. I know medicinal qualities bother some people, but I suppose they aren't as problematic for me. Either way, that element is faint in this beer. I imagine it would taste pretty awesome in float form, given the sweetness and the mint flavors.

 1,286 characters

Photo of homebrew311
3.83/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Really digging these unique stout offerings from Ska. This one pours dark brown with no clarity, loose brown head settles quickly. The nose smells just like Thin Mint cookies. Mint and spearimint team up with a heavy dose of cocoa character along with a noticeable presence of vanilla and makes for a rather decadent nose. The taste is a sweet up front with mild cream and chocolate with heavy mint towards the finish. The taste doesn't quite deliver the deliciousness of the nose as the stout base seems a little weak. The finish is all mint and vanilla. Mouthfeel is somewhat thin with moderate carbonation. Overall, I like what Ska went for here, and I think the nose is amazing. I think the flavor could use some tweaking, perhaps a thicker body and a more roasted base.

 774 characters

Photo of tjsdomer2
3.86/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Black coffee. Not a whole lot of foam, but there is a thin layer of lacing. Fairly thin overall.

Smell: Mint and cocoa. Very fresh. Would like it a bit stronger.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Strong dark chocolate. A bit liquer-like. Mint in the finish. Very clean. Seems a bit thin at first, but there's a nice minty freshness in the finish.

Overall: I would have liked this with a bit more umph in the presentation, but I did enjoy this.

 441 characters

Photo of denver10
3.46/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Pours dark brown with a nice mocha head. Aroma smells like some After 8 mints, sweet and minty with some chocolate. Not getting much of the vanilla bean that is supposedly here. Taste is super duper minty, starting with the spearmint, closing out with the peppermint. Underneath there is the vanilla that is very much needed to balance things out, but this still leans a little too heavily on the mint side of the spectrum. Closes out with a touch of some roastiness. A thinner, crisper mouthfeel. Overall, decent beer here but one can was probably all I really needed of this one.

 581 characters

Photo of busternuggz
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz can into a snifter.

Opaque black with a 1/4" coffee colored head. Recedes to a thick ring, leaves spotty lacing.

Lots of assertive mint and chocolate on the nose, some subtle earthy/herbal undertones, a little roastiness and sweetness. Very nice.

Similarly on the taste, strong, planty mint followed by cocoa, then some earthy vanilla. Long finish full of roasted malt, semisweet creamy chocolate, and a consistent bite of mint all the way through. Just the right amount of sweetness, very well balanced.

Light bodied, smooth, creamy. Maybe a little thin for a stout but it works with this beer. Ends clean. Very nice.

Good stout overall. Mostly dominated by the adjuncts, but they work and it is nicely balanced and well made. Made a great after dinner beer.

 784 characters

Photo of Beaver13
3.38/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz can. Pours brown black with a medium creamy tan head that quickly goes to a thin film that leaves a little lacing.

The aroma is roasted malts, mint, vanilla and a little coffee and leather.

The flavor is sweet chocolate and vanilla malts, some roast and a lot of mint. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, a little odd with the sweet chocolate and vanilla, roast and mint, but I think I like it.

 440 characters

Photo of JEdmund
3/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Good tan head formation over a nearly black body (some brown color is visible).

Smell is minty! There’s also some molasses sweetness in there, which isn’t pleasant. The peppermint becomes a bit too Vicks vapor-like for me.

Taste kicks off minty, and it’s supported by light roasty notes, and ample malt sweetness. Finish is fairly strong on the mint. Body is low on carbonation and thin—not good. After five or six sips, I’m already feeling done with this one. It’s just not doing it for me. There’s not enough bready and roasty malts to balance the mint and sweetness. The finish really keeps me at an arm’s length.

I’m surprised by how much I don’t like this! I thought I’d love it. I thought their last Vernal stout was pretty good and expected this to be even better. Glad I got to try it, but I wouldn’t recommend it.

 849 characters

Photo of Rope
3.91/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thick, dark, rich, but the head is thin and surprisingly white. This contrast lays in the flavors to come.

Thin mint.

Thin mint.

Thick and oily, like a good stout. The novelty flavor sticks around a little too long though.

I have to say I enjoyed this one, but as stated it is more novel than anything. Something to give to people to try, but I would not go out seeking it to retry.

 432 characters

Photo of Moose90
4.21/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Best By JUL 06 13

12oz can poured into Snifter.

A – Pours a dark translucent brown. In the glass it is black and rich. Head is a thin, light brown layer. Lacing left behind is uniform and light.

S – Woah, complex. Sweet cocoa, light mint, powdered sugar. Bitter dark espresso, and a light caramel note. Reminiscent of a thin mint cookie.

T – Minty fresh. Light mint notes, peppermint, spearmint. Chocolate and vanilla notes try to come through, but this is abundantly strong on the mint forefront.

M – Surprisingly light. Aeration is high, leading to the light and somewhat thin feel. Wish this was thicker and more substantial to help play up the abundance of rich aromas.

O – What a wicked beer. Minty goodness, not another one out there like it that I have had. I do wish this had a bit more substance to it, it comes across a bit thin. This on a nitro tap would be downright ridiculous.

 907 characters

Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.08/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a shaker pint glass.

Look: Oil black with dark brown coming through edges in the light. Cream colored head recedes to a film, lots of foamy lacing on the glass.

Aroma: Mint, mint chocolate, cocoa powder.

Taste: Very prominent peppermint and spearmint notes up front. A more roasted malt body, dark mint chocolate and cocoa.

Mouthfeel: Medium body.

Overall: Really delicious as the mint and chocolate notes blend well. Great dessert beer.

 455 characters

Photo of facundoCNB
4.42/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a beautiful brown/black pour turns solid black in the glass with 2 fingers of light creme head which slowly dissipated. smells of spearmint, mint gum, chocolate. tastes like those girlscout cookies (thin mints).. sweet light chocolate, and minty chocolate flavors. not really much else there, but what the hell else do you really need? oh wait, just when you think the flavor blast is over here comes spearmint! it's like mint gum meets girlscout cookies meets sweet milk hershey's chocolate bar. holy fuck!

medium body, sticky on the lips, medium carbonation.

this is a perfectly executed mint stout. the stone one was nice and all, introduced the whole flavor to me.. but holy fuck of all fuckers, this is probably the best thing i've ever put in my mouth.

 761 characters

Photo of TheBrewo
3.96/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A final big, big thanks to StonedTrippin for sharing this beer with us, and hosting such an amazing tasting. We cracked the can and poured a brew of oily jet black. The color remained through the tasting, but did let up some lighter deep browns around the edges when held to the sky. It held a one and a half finger tall head of soapy, creamy light brown bubbles, showing nice retention. Rings of lacing were left around the glass as it went. No haze or sediment was noted, and carbonation appeared to be slow. The aroma was pure mint. This component actually showed a great deal of authenticity, with only a little wild sweetness bordering on York’s Peppermint Patties with warmth, and when in combination with the big chocolate, sugary sweet malts. The grain bill was otherwise big and roasty, with coffees, and raw cocoa. Baker’s yeast added dryness, while white sugar, and light milkiness added smoothness, and faint lactic pucker. Our first impression was that, as in the nose, the mint was bright up front, but the sip muddled towards the back. As we sipped, raw mint leaf, dirty earthiness, mineral, light booze, faint vanilla bean, and big roasty chocolate malts started things off. The middle came to a sweet peak, with white sugar, gummy spearmint, milk chocolate, and faint diacetyls. The finishing wash crashed through, with mineral, big continued mint, plastic phenolic rumbles, overly charred coffee malts, and a bizarre white sugar syrupiness. The aftertaste breathed of char, raw coffee beans, roasted chocolate malts, faint vanilla, metallics, and dry yeasty pucker. The body was thick and syrupy at first, but thinned as the tasting went on, while carbonation was medium. The mouth was coated with smooth, oily slickness, with only light dryness on the final smack. Each sip gave slow froth and cream, with nice finishing slurp and pop. The abv was appropriate, and the beer drank easily.

Overall, what we liked best about this beer was how robustly present the mint was. From the second it was open you could catch bright whiffs of easy, clean mintiness wafting across the room. This blended well with the hearty malt base, making for a curiously refreshing aroma. The flavor followed nicely, but by the end of the sip the charred coffee and overly represented white sugar sweetness clashed, never quite finding that perfect balance. Either way this is a great representation of the style, and much more palatable than Stone’s mint stout at first glance, but it still seems there are some bugs to be worked out before this becomes a mainstream flavor.

 2,577 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Local Option cervoise.

Well, she didn't hate it, so that bodes well... Anyway, this stuff pours a straight obsidian topped by a finger or so of khaki foam. The nose comprises an evenly-matched showdown between mild roasted malts, cocoa, and light coffee on one side and the minty aspects on the other. Somehow, the mints don't o'erpower things or get in the way like a fussy child, but rather compete on equal footing with the usual stout-y bits. The taste brings in more of the same, with the same balance holding court, making all sorts of people happy. The body is a heavy-set medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a nigh-chewy feel. Overall, a very nice stout, one that shows you can indeed make a mint stout without fucking the whole idea up: hope for the future following on the heels of today's pleasure...

 834 characters

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.08/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

this is really a great beer, and easily the best of the rotating stout series so far. it is even better than the stone collaboration as far as a mint chocolate stout goes. it pours a luxurious milk chocolate color with a thick and creamy rich tan head, only a half inch or so high, but really dense and persistent. the nose is definitely minty, but I appreciate the blend of peppermint and spearmint, sometimes each can be overly intense, but I think the blend is just right. its balanced with the cocoa and the medium to dark roasted barley. the flavor is also quite balanced, soft and drinkable, not shocking or bizarre. rich sweeter chocolate blends with the fresh mint perfectly, and the bitter burnt malt and cocoa powder is a nice contrast in the finish. the can says vanilla was added, but I cant pick up much of that, maybe just a touch in the finish too, but its way back. the mouthfeel is awesome. its very smooth and easy down, but its extremely full bodied as well. the carbonation is light and hard to describe, its almost like a nitro beer with its thickness and tickly little bubbles, but its a little less charged up. overall I liked this beer a lot, definitely skas best stout, and a lot like those junior mint candies I remember from being a kid. not sure id want to drink a whole six pack though.

 1,315 characters

Photo of StoneTSR
3.76/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

APPEARANCE: Dark as night, there is no light getting through this beer at all. It pours more like an Imperial Stout except that there is a nice, foamy, coffee-colored head resting on top. The head is about two full fingers in my Funkwerks globe. The lacing is exceptional and covers most of the back side of the glass.

SMELL: Wow. There is a lot of coffee on the nose here, not what I expected at all. Hints of dark chocolate linger underneath the coffee and only a very faint scent of mint is detectable, and you really have to look for it.

TASTE: There’s the mint! It really comes through in the flavor big time, at least once it has warmed to 55 degrees. That said, each sip begins with only a hint of mint while coffee dominates. Chocolate takes the middle portion as the mint flavor builds and then the finish is strong on spearmint with a slight toasty flavor. This is a fun and complex beer.

MOUTHFEEL: Light, tickling carbonation. The Minthe Stout is smooth, easy-drinking and creamy. One drawback is that it is not quite as big bodied as I expected it to be. It’s a little thin.

OVERALL: About halfway through the glass I remembered that I had some Thin Mint Girl Scout cookies in the kitchen so I broke them out. Good call on my part. The pairing only seems to heighten the experience of both. Anyhow, back to the straight beer – if this beer were not following the Hibernal Vinifera I would be a lot more impressed. It is a really good stout, but it doesn’t quite live up to the standard set by the previous seasonal stout from Ska.

 1,555 characters

Photo of awakeavast
3.87/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I picked this up based on the reviews I've read claiming it was liquid thin mints, and that description is pretty accurate.

Appearance: I poured it into a generic pint glass to scope it out. It's a pretty standard looking stout. Very dark brown, and still lets a little light through. Darker tan head that leaves some lacing.

Smell: It has a pretty strong menthol mint smell to it, with some slight notes of chocolate in the background.

Taste: It tastes just like it smells. A solid burst of menthol up front that finishes with a milk chocolate flavor.

Mouthfeel: It has a pretty medium mouthfeel, maybe a little bit on the thinner side of medium. Not overly carbonated either.

Overall: I enjoyed it. It's more of a novelty stout to me than anything, so I don't think I'd buy a 6 pack of it again, but I would definitely recommend it to anyone who likes thin-mints or just odd-flavored stouts. It was worth trying.

 921 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.09/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stout brewed with peppermint, spearmint, cocoa and vanilla beans

Appearance: Has the classic stout look, with a very nice head that sticks and leaves plenty of lace behind

Smell: Minty and chocolatey

Taste: Minty, with chocolate flavors buttressing through the middle; after the swallow, the vanilla and lactose add another angle

Mouthfeel: Medium body and moderate carbonation

Overall: After having had a few disappointments with chocolate mint beers (the Stone collaboration being one), this one finally does the trick; tastes like Thin Mints in a bottle (or should I say, a can)

 587 characters

firstprev| 1-25 | 26-50  | next → last
Vernal Minthe Stout from Ska Brewing Co.
3.72 out of 5 based on 198 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.