As the mercury drops and the days become shorter, I yearn for a tipple that warms the cockles of my heart.
No longer the season for light salads, alfresco meals or iced teas, no sir. ’tis the season for meat-laden stews by the fire, layered clothing, pale skin and beers as dark as the afternoon sky. Beers that should be served with a spoon and a warning. Beers that upon drinking force you to sit back, take notice and ponder.
An all too regular Untappd user, I have noticed that my choice of brew has taken a decidedly dark twist of late. Belgian Porter, Chocolate Porter, Stout, Imperial Stout and Belgian Dark Ale, if it’s dark and interesting, I’m all over it like a fat kid on a Smartie.
So given my recent interest in all beers dark and stormy, here are five dark beers worth a look this winter:
Tokyo* (Intergalactic fantastic oak aged stout) by BrewDog
With an ABV of 18.2%, this brew is not for the faint of heart. Still a damn fine beer, filled with intrigue and complexity.
Temptress by Holgate Brewhouse
Very chocolaty, this Chocolate Porter is well balanced and very approachable. With an ABV of 6.0%, you can have a couple without turning into Prince William at a fancy dress party.
Hargreaves Hill Stout by Hargreaves Hill Brewing Co.
A Lovely stout dominated by the usual coffee and chocolate suspects. Warmth is provided by an ABV of 6.7% and the beer finishes with a very slight bitterness.
Sierra Nevada Stout by Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Not yet tasted, this brew has been on my list for some time. A huge fan of their Pale Ale, their website rates the stout as: “Creamy, malty, and full-bodied, the Sierra Nevada Stout is satisfyingly rich. Caramel and Black malts give the Stout its deep, dark color and pronounced roasted flavor”. Has an ABV of 5.8%
Hitachino Nest Espresso Stout by Hitachino Nest If you have tasted any Hitachino Nest beers before, you will know what I mean when I say these guys are nuts. If you see this, or any of the Hitachino Nest beers on offer, order it. They certainly are interesting (their website is hilarious as well).