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Dating back to the mid 1700s, stouts evolved as a name for slightly beefier, roastier versions of a porter. But don’t let their creamy foam and black hue fool you — stouts are naturally light and trim-bodied. An Irish-style stout, like Guinness, only packs 2.5 more calories per ounce than Miller Lite. The style is diverse, ranging from sweeter, rounder English milk stouts, to dry and roasty Irish stouts, to fluffy oatmeal iterations. And today craft brewers are reinventing the style by adding warming spices, dark fruits, espresso and off-the-wall ingredients like mint or juniper.
YOU MAY TASTE
Expect notes of dark and milk chocolate, brown bread, toast, licorice, dark fruits, vanilla, spice, mocha, coffee or espresso. American versions may feature citrus and hoppy bitterness while imperial stouts may offer dark fruits and spice.
SIP THEM WITH
Savour a stout with oysters, lobster, calamari, roasted and grilled vegetables, steak, lamb, game meats, stews, barbecued ribs or brisket. It's also a great after-dinner beer paired with bloomy-rind cheeses, chocolate or fruit-based desserts and vanilla ice cream.
While stouts are wonderful served cold for summer barbecues, on cold days, let the bottle warm up for 10 to 15 minutes and pour into pint or tulip glasses so your hand can warm the stout a bit more, opening up the flavour with each sip.
Calling all chocolate and java fans — stouts, made with malts roasted to create chocolate and coffee flavours — are for you. This classic beer style offers something for everyone — with options ranging from dry to sweet, and creamy to slender. Plus craft brewers are adding everything from cherries to hot peppers, imparting delicious complexity.
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