Samuel smiths oatmeal stout


image“Brewed with well water (the original well at the Old Brewery, sunk in 1758, is still in use, with the hard well water being drawn from 85 feet underground); fermented in ‘stone Yorkshire squares’ to create an almost opaque, wonderfully silky and smooth textured ale with a complex medium dry palate and bittersweet finish.”

Picked this one up at Harrigan’s bottle shop in the Hunter Valley. Very old English-style label, we like it. Served in a beer tulip the sparse black pour generates a creamy, 1 finger hazelnut brown cap. Good head retention eventually reducing to a thin dusting with healthy lace trails. Off the nose we get oatmeal, roasted biscuit malts, a touch of mocha, chocolate and nuts. Mouth feel is quite smooth and oily with enough body to keep it from thinning. Carbonation is moderate. The only downside is the flavour is quite weak, but it still doesn’t disappoint. We got subtle notes of roasted chocolate malts and a caramel sweetness initially. Through the mid a slightly bitter coffee roast with a strange saltiness is rounded off with a dry, earthy hop finish. Length is a little short. Such a smooth stout and drinkable stout though, and the 5% ABV adds to that by being quite low in comparison to most oatmeal stouts. If we were going to have a session on the dark beers this would be the one to go to. Easy drinking stout but nothing overly adventurous so it doesn’t get a huge reception for us. Middle of the class beer.