Samuel Smith’s makes several great brews, but my choice for this session is the Samuel Smith’s Imperial Stout.
You can find the complete history of The Old Brewery from their website, samuelsmithsbrewery.co.uk.
Some info on the Imperial Stout.
This distinctive type of beer was originally brewed to withstand the abuses of shipping in foul weather to Imperial Russia. It was a favourite of Russian nobility whose taste for the finest food and drink was world famous.
A rich flavourful brew; deep chocolate in colour with a roasted barley nose and flavour that is a complexity of malt, hops, alcohol and yeast. Fermented in ‘stone Yorkshire squares’.
I’m eager to see if it’s as good as some of the other Samuel Smith’s I’ve tried.
I must first apologize for the picture. It wasn’t the best quality, but maybe I can describe it well enough to get past that setback.
This beer is low in ABV for an Imperial Stout by standing at 7.0%. It comes in a 12 oz. bottle with a decorative, gold foil surrounding the cap.
Once I got the beer in a glass and took a closer look, it appeared to be a very dark brownish/black color with some dark red/ruby colors showing through the middle. Some ruby highlights also graced the sides and the bottom of the pint. It had a wonderful cream colored head with more than adequate size and retention. The lacing left behind was very prominent and sticky. The head looked creamy, smooth and very inviting.
As I brought the brew to my nose and took a whiff, I detected a delectable, burnt fruit aroma. Something similar to roasted raisin and plum. I found a very robust “creamed” coffee combined with a toasted grain or wheat that intermingles with dark malts and just a faint note of alcohol. All were blended very well.
The taste is very well balanced also. Combining cream with dark, burnt fruit; touches of alcohol and a roasted grain. It’s rich and sweet and, in many ways, reminds me of a fruit cake. A small, small amount of discernible bitterness is found before it heads down the throat.
The mouthfeel was medium to full bodied. Slippery and smooth. Warming, thick and chewy. The palate is drenched admirably with a comfortable alcohol warmth that invites another sip.
As always, please let me know what you think if you have tried it.
Also, be sure to vote in the poll to the right and tell me what is your favorite style of beer.
Score: 4.2 out of 5