Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Murphy's Irish Stout

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 14/20
Chad9976 (654) - Albany, New York, USA - APR 24, 2012
I’m a big fan of the stout style of beer since most brews of the type tend to be rich and robust while at the same time smooth. However, a traditional Irish stout is rather plain and dry, but at least smooth and this is true of Murphy’s Irish Stout. I think this is an acquired taste beer.


This beer comes in 16oz cans with a nitrogen widget to create for an on-tap experience. It pours smoothly and forms a thick, creamy, dark tan head that never dissipates and leaves a thick layer on the glass. The body is, not surprisingly, opaque black and because of the nitrogen widget, the bubbles fall down instead of rise up. The aroma is very mild with hints of maltiness but is otherwise unremarkable.


I can’t remember what my first Guinness tasted like but I have a feeling it was pretty close to my first Murphy’s. The difference is now I have a more discriminating palate and what I would otherwise find tasty, came across as mild and dry.

Unlike stouts I prefer, this beer is not what I would call rich or robust. There is a distinct almond taste in the palate and the roasted qualities it has do not hit me until the aftertaste. There are virtually no chocolate or coffee notes to speak of. It also leaves a dry aftertaste after every swig. Not that it tastes bad, not at all actually, but I definitely would’ve preferred something richer in flavor.


Murphy’s has a very gentle, soft, watery mouthfeel and a creaminess not found in many beers. It’s one of the few beers I could honestly described as “velvety smooth.”


At only 4% ABV and 150 calories per serving, this is practically a party brew. Yet another example of how stouts’ reputation for being overly-robust is more fiction than fact.


I wouldn’t say I disliked this beer, but I was underwhelmed. Still, there’s a lot going for it. An even more experienced connoisseur than I could probably pick up on the subtle flavors, and lightweights will find its non-bitter taste appealing.

Grade: 6/10

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