What do you look for in Stouts?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by Beertsipper, Jan 24, 2015.

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  1. doppletheGOAT

    doppletheGOAT Initiate (0) Nov 27, 2012 Texas

    Russian Imperial Stout or Imperial Stout -

    Smoke, roasted or burnt malt, dry leaf tobacco, oak created simply by the malt build, bitter coffee and bitter baker's chocolate, maybe some bitter earthy hops and then hints of dark fruit and caramel to balance out the stronger flavors. Maybe a hint of licorice in the aftertaste. I get these flavors a lot in SN Narwhal and Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout after they age for about a year or two.

    Regular Stout -

    A lighter version of all of the above...
  2. doppletheGOAT

    doppletheGOAT Initiate (0) Nov 27, 2012 Texas

    I forgot to list Barrel aged Imperial stouts which is a different animal all together.

    But everything I posted in my last post along with, whiskey, sweet pipe tobacco, oak created by the barrel, char, burnt or toasted coconut, vanilla and just a REALLY smooth silky finish and very little hoppy bitterness. I think the barrels somehow kill the hops taste. At least that's what I've noticed about barrel aging.
    #42 doppletheGOAT, Jan 25, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2015
  3. BoardwalkBock

    BoardwalkBock Zealot (575) Aug 18, 2012 New York

    Coffee, chocolate, vanilla, bourbon and solid buzz.
  4. Hrodebert

    Hrodebert Aspirant (265) Sep 2, 2013 Michigan

    Rich dark chocolate and coffee, with very little bitter.
    Plenty of vanilla, with a thick, but not overpowering sweetness.
    Most importantly is balance.
  5. beerded_drunk

    beerded_drunk Initiate (0) Aug 30, 2013 Pennsylvania

    right now I'm really into semi/bitter-sweet chocolate and heavy on the dark fruits (black butte xxvi) that beer is my shit right now, wish it wasn't $19.99 for a damn bomber, but worth it.
    BeerForMuscle likes this.
  6. Golferallen54

    Golferallen54 Initiate (0) May 1, 2014 Colorado

    I look for heavy chocolate and roasted malts with goth dark fruits... I also really love a properly done fruit stout
  7. SteveB24

    SteveB24 Initiate (0) Aug 29, 2013 New York

    Love a good stout but often find the molasses flavor to be so strong the beer almost tastes like soy sauce, so anything but that, please.
  8. Stagga_Lee

    Stagga_Lee Initiate (0) Jul 22, 2014 Massachusetts

    I love everything on this list...do you consider Hairy Eyeball a stout though? Also, have you had Dark Truth? The Belgian yeast provides a bunch of dark fruit notes.
  9. StLeasy

    StLeasy Initiate (0) Sep 8, 2013 Illinois

    Oops should have clarified, I consider Hairy Eyeball a strong ale/barleywine/Scotch ale, just one that I definitely get a little bit of roast from. And yup I love Dark Truth. Cheers!
    Stagga_Lee and Beertsipper like this.
  10. Dil_thebeerdrinking_do

    Dil_thebeerdrinking_do Initiate (0) Jan 21, 2014 Georgia

    A distinct poop flavor
  11. Mshea805

    Mshea805 Initiate (0) Apr 12, 2014 California

    Sweet and boozy with little to no bitterness. Bourbon, Chocolate, and/or vanilla preferably. Just no licorice, overly bitter coffee and mostly no strong hop flavors!
  12. mungbeans

    mungbeans Initiate (0) May 27, 2007 Massachusetts

    Full body.
    mlhyatt likes this.
  13. zac16125

    zac16125 Poo-Bah (2,192) Jan 26, 2010 South Carolina
    Society Trader

    The solutions to all of life's problems.

    And I usually find them there.
  14. humuloner22

    humuloner22 Initiate (0) Feb 7, 2013 North Carolina

    I like the roasted coffee, vanilla, chocolate notes. In a BA, version the right amount of balance from the base and the barrel. I have had a few rum barrel aged ones and many whiskey/bourbon barrel aged ones and bourbon seems to blend more closely to the base of a stout. Also, mouthfeel should be velvety and somewhat viscous.
  15. Hhodne

    Hhodne Initiate (0) Sep 18, 2014 Norway

    My favorite stout would have a huge body, loads of coffee/vanilla/chocolate and tons of salty licorice.
    It's hard to find those salty treats, but man, when that salty liquid hits my lips my eyes rolls back and I enter Nirvana for a few seconds.

    What I really don't like in my stout is brett and milk. Why would you ever want to add milk/cream to let all those great flavours disappear?
  16. JAntony345

    JAntony345 Initiate (0) May 1, 2010 New York

    I lean towards Russian and Imperial Stouts with zero bitterness and high abv. I prefer bourbon/coffee/chocolate/notes but I always enjoy a good twist. I like to just sit with my slow sipper.
  17. parrotsnest

    parrotsnest Initiate (0) Aug 16, 2010 Washington

    coffee, bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, booze, thick, black
  18. Dansac

    Dansac Initiate (137) Dec 6, 2014 California

    roasted malt, some dark fruit, dark chocolate, and hints of coffee and vanilla. Not too sweet. I like them full bodied, bitter, thick, and imposing.
  19. keithmurray

    keithmurray Meyvn (1,405) Oct 7, 2009 Connecticut

    Tons of chocolate (dark or milk), roasted malts, hint of vanilla, hint of coffee, not hopped too much, robust mouthfeel. Yeah.
  20. patdunkel

    patdunkel Initiate (0) Apr 4, 2014 Wisconsin

    I like creaminess with some depth of flavor. I like to subtly taste whatever adjuncts may be in there, while not letting those overpower (cocoa, vanilla, chile, etc.). Basically, I look for things that taste like Huna but are much easier to get:grinning:
    CW's stuff falls into that category for me thankfully. One of the few good things about living in this God forsaken climate..
  21. DHS1029

    DHS1029 Initiate (0) Feb 14, 2013 Illinois

    In a RIS I like lots of dark chocolate and dark fruits like plum and fig. In an American Imperial I like lots of chocolate, coffee, and dark roastiness in the malt profile. I prefer my stouts to have a thicker mouthfeel with a decent amount of carbonation. Stouts that are too thin lose that complexity that I like. Same goes with BA stouts. I like bourbon heat, but not overdone.
  22. MaltLickyWithTheCandy

    MaltLickyWithTheCandy Initiate (0) Apr 22, 2013 Maryland

    Smoothness, velvety feel and a lot of coffee and vanilla flavors.
  23. UCLABrewN84

    UCLABrewN84 Initiate (0) Mar 18, 2010 California

  24. scifan

    scifan Initiate (0) Aug 31, 2007 North Carolina

    Well I guess the most important thing is a since of humor I mean we all love to laugh am I right or what. Runner up would be honesty and how much money it makes.
  25. SackBlabbath

    SackBlabbath Initiate (0) Nov 28, 2014 Kentucky

    Right now i'm really digging stouts with chilis. Also first post, woohoo!
  26. WillemHC

    WillemHC Initiate (133) Jun 21, 2013 Utah

    no off flavors :slight_smile: lol
  27. Vitacca

    Vitacca Crusader (783) Sep 15, 2010 Alaska
    Society Trader

    Double digit ABV and super rarity.
  28. Shmuffalo

    Shmuffalo Initiate (0) Feb 26, 2012 Pennsylvania

    Chocolate and coffee with vanilla.

    I also love beers like Hunaphu, Bomb!, and Xocovesa with cinnamon and peppers mixed in. It seems like more breweries are trying these combinations out, so I'm pretty happy.
  29. VitisVinifera

    VitisVinifera Initiate (135) Feb 25, 2013 California

    coffee, warmth, body. What I've found I really don't like is bourbon taste/smell, after having a number of these ones that tout it. I prefer beer in my beer.
  30. Admbmb92

    Admbmb92 Initiate (0) Oct 6, 2013 Oregon

    Thick body, lots of chocolate and coffee, and balanced sweetness
    FaradayUncaged likes this.
  31. floridadrift

    floridadrift Initiate (0) Oct 24, 2014 Florida


    Blackness, bourbon, cognac, vanilla, sweetness, chocolatey goodness, heat, no hops whatsoever. I like smoke too with a bourbon barrel aged. Bois Fume and Smoking Wood '14 were really, really nice.
  32. FaradayUncaged

    FaradayUncaged Initiate (0) Oct 24, 2014 Michigan

    In addition to reiterating the basics of coffee, chocolate, maple, etc (any combination), the big dealbreaker for me is in the mouthfeel. I don't enjoy 'watery' stouts, regardless of flavor (though it does seem that the better flavors bring the mouthfeel along for the ride in most cases).
  33. TBonez477

    TBonez477 Defender (632) Jan 15, 2015 Vermont

    Roasty, coffee, chocolate. Like many before me, sweet and roasty are nice balance to find.
  34. SpaceEurope

    SpaceEurope Initiate (0) Dec 26, 2012 New Jersey

    Nothing. Blackness
  35. Kanger

    Kanger Initiate (0) Sep 3, 2013 New York

    Chocolate and roasty forward flavors.

    I'm not a coffee guy at all, so when a stout has that flavor forward I don't like it.
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