Thursday, November 20, 2008

Samuel Smith Old Brewery: Oatmeal Stout

As promised in my last Samuel Smith review, I wrote that I would buy, consume, and post on Samuel Smith Old Brewery Oatmeal Stout. If you just clicked on that prior post, you may notice my varying use of this brewery's name. To tell you the truth I'm quite confused. On the pale ale I purchased, the label states "Samuel Smith's Old Brewery Pale Ale. However, this beer label reads Samuel Smith Old Brewery Oatmeal Stout. I don't know what happened to the apostrophe 's' but it disappeared somewhere. If you don't believe examine the pictures.

That all being said I'm pretty sure these beers all are produced from the same brewery. A brewery in Tadcaster, Yorkshire, England. A very very old brewery in Tadcaster, Yorkshire, England. Apparently Samuel Smith uses 200 year old yeast strains for its beers and ancient brewing techniques; specifically the Yorkshire Square.

As a result, Samuel Smith's brews have unique flavors you just can't find anyone else. If there is any continuity between the two beers I reviewed that might be attributed to the old brewing methods it could be a noticeable sweetness. I thought the pale ale had very sweet toffee flavors and this beer has some syrupy sweetness to it. For being a stout, the beer's sweet aftertaste was a little surprising. The sweetness reminds me of a little of coke or pepsi. That may sound gross, but it works. The sugar sensation is not overpowering at all and rounds out a pretty hearty initial mouthfeel. Besides the sweet, the stout smells like oats which isn't surprising, as it is an oatmeal stout, and the malt flavors finally start to emerge as the beer warms a little. Combined with the sweetness it's pretty good.

So I followed through on my promise to review this beer. And while I can't promise it, I'm very confident that this very old brewery will produce a brew that any beer drinker will enjoy. Cheers.


Brian said...

The Sam Smith Oatmeal Stout actually opened me up to a major stout "phase" in my life about a year ago. Agreed on the overall sweetness relative to other stouts and even against other oatmeal stouts which often get considered as "dessert beers".

If you're interested in more Oatmeal Stouts, I'd recommend the Six Point Otis Oatmeal Stout. I had a cask version of this the other night and was a big fan.

Mattie said...

Thanks for the tip Brian. It might be difficult to get my hands on an 'Otis' out west. But I'll inform my Eastcoast contributors to keep an eye out for it.