I love my bitter beers. In fact the more bitter a beer is, the better. But it comes with a risk. A really bitter beer can leave a bitter aftertaste. And nobody wants that.
Enter Schell's Stout. It's my first foray into the world of the August Schell Brewing Company, but it won't be my last. This is one of the best stouts I've had in a long time.
First of all, I have to talk about its color. I love beers that I can't see through. And this beer was as dark as anything I've had in a while. The head was a beautiful dark tan and looked great as it was poured.
Then there's the taste. This is a bitter one, folks. I could detect a bit of coffee, both in the smell and in the taste. There was also a hint of very dark (bordering on bittersweet) chocolate. The aftertaste was like a very dark roast coffee; it actually reminded me of my favorite Ethiopian blend. But it wasn't bitter. It was actually slightly sweet and very pleasant - and it lasted a while.
Texture-wise, this is a very smooth beer. It actually warmed me up a bit after drinking it. Not like an alcohol burn, but more like that feeling you get after taking a sip of rich hot chocolate.
Don't try this beer straight out of your fridge. I tried a sip when it was still ice cold and it didn't taste right. I let it sit in the glass for a minute or so and it was perfect.
Long story short - this is a very good winter beer. And the price can't be beat. My local liquor store stocked it at just about $8 for a six-pack. Perfect if you have a crowd of discerning beer drinkers coming over, but you don't want to break the bank.
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