What is a Stout?

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  • Written By: Shannon Kietzman
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  • Last Modified Date: 10 October 2019
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A stout is a type of beer that is characterized by its dark color and heavily roasted flavor. This type of beer achieves its taste and color by being brewed with a heavily kilned malt. Unlike lager beer, it utilizes top fermenting yeasts. Today, the term has come to describe the beers with the strongest taste and weight.

There are two classifications of stout: bitter or sweet. Within these two categories, there are several different types of beer. Dry stout is the original formula for this type of beer.

Dry stout is usually dark, bitter, and rich. Guinness is one example. It may also be flavored with chocolate, dark fruit, or coffee. These additives create a sweeter or a drier beer.

Another type is imperial stout. Originally created to survive transport from Britain to Russia, it is particularly strong in taste and has a hint of sweetness. It is a black and particularly dense variety that has a strong alcohol content of 6 to 7 percent. Imperial stout is commonly flavored with dried fruit and burnt cocoa. This variety had fallen out of popularity until it was re-introduced by Samuel Smiths brewery in the 1980s.


Oatmeal stout is another common sweet variety. Instead of malt, oats are used in order to brew this variety. Oats were originally added because it was believed they were an important part of the diet. Oatmeal stout has a smooth texture and a strong flavor. This type of beer also fell out of favor, but was later introduced by Samuel Smiths brewery in 1980.

Sweet stout is another variety, and as would be expected, it has a sweet taste. It may have a caramel or chocolate flavor to it, because lactic sugars and chocolate malts are used during the brewing process. For this reason, this type of beer is sometimes called cream stout or milk stout. This variety was once believed to be a nutritious form of beer, and nursing mothers were encouraged to drink it. Nowadays, drinking any alcohol while nursing is a controversial choice that is best discussed with a doctor.


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Post 3

Guinness stouts are owned by a Protestant family, which many Irish may tend to find disagreeable. Despite this fact, most Irish have learned to put aside differences and join hands for a good Guinness.

Post 2


Actually, whiskey is somewhat milder than scotch. These were transmitted and perfected by Irish monks and other clerics throughout Irish history. As the Irish evangelized the world, the also brought spirits of another kind.

Post 1

Stouts are hearty beers for hearty people. In Ireland, the stouts are generally drunk warm, for added effect and taste. Most people won't drink a stout, let alone drink it warm. Irish seem to have a penchant for strong liquors, with Whiskey being another very deep spirit.

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