Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Black Coal Stout

Long day at the office. Dreadful commute. Sleepy man. Friday. That recipe called for a dark beer on the double. I opted to crack into a 473mL can of Black Coal Stout, a 6% alcohol offering from St. Thomas, Ontario's own Railway City Brewing Company. According to the copy on the can, this brew is "for all the naughty boys and girls".

Coffee black and with a cappuccino foam of head, Black Coal looks the part. A mild nose packs a lot of nuance--chocolate milk, earthy and toasty malts, and a whiff of bitterness. The flavour is more bitter than I'd expected, and features a curl of pipe smoke and a drip of molasses, before it veers sweetly toward cocoa at the finish of each sip. And each sip is thick and creamy.

In my experience, 6% is a tough strength. Brewers and marketing jags often slap that "strong beer" label on a brew that often doesn't meet expectations. Sure, it might be actually stronger than the standard 5, but it doesn't taste any more formidable. However, I certainly don't object to those words being applied to Black Coal, since it actually tastes as though there is some gravitas. Not an exceptional stout, but really a delightfully good one. One I want again soon.

Rating: 8.5 out of 10.

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