Sunday, 24 February 2013

REVIEW #125: Coffee Stout (Nils Oscar)

Sweden's Nils Oscar beers are not easy to come by over here in the UK, save for Rökporter and God Lager, so I was pretty excited to find this in Leicester's finest, The Offie. Now is the time to stop waffling and start drinking...

Style: Stout.
Appearance: Dark brown body and pale brown head. 
Nose: Subtle musty malt with a bitter, spent coffee scent.
Taste: There's a depth to this ale. What starts off full of oaky vanilla and milk chocolate, silky smooth and creamy, develops body and evolves into something sweeter and sharper, showcasing wholemeal cereal flavours, both spicy and nutty, with hints of tobacco. The finish has signs of a well brewed filter coffee, along with an appreciable dark or espresso roast bitterness. All this is done judiciously, carefully, nothing brash or tacky. One to savour and think about.  
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and a little oily/slippery. 
Carbonation: Moderate, nothing obtrusive.
ABV: 6.4%
What's in it?:  A mysterious (to me, anyway) blend of malt and hop. Along with Brazilian 'Fazenda Ambiental Fortaleza' espresso-roast coffee.

Whenever I'm out and about in Birmingham I like to visit the Urban Coffee Company, a coffee house which is fairly unique in doing filter coffees 'the right way', i.e. freshly ground beans placed onto filter paper sitting in a porcelain filter cup, which then has boiling water poured over it sporadically for a few minutes. Simple and effective! They offer four coffees, one of which is Brazilian. This beer reminds me of that coffee a lot, being both chocolatey and fruity. So it was no surprise to find Brazilian coffee added to this beer. Although to be fair I'm sure an Indonesian, e.g. Javan or Sumatran, would work equally well. Wish I'd bought a few of these coffee stouts... After drinking this stout, I'm tempted to add an espresso to the next Guinness I drink and see what the result is :p

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