Monday, January 12, 2015

Narragansett Autocrat Coffee Milk Stout

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (1259) - Albany, New York, USA - JAN 12, 2015
It’s pretty common knowledge by now that the Narragansett brand of beers are contract brewed by Genesee and most of them are deliberately mild and pedestrian. When I heard they had made a coffee stout I didn’t have high hopes. Thankfully, my fears were quickly dashed after the first sip as this beer tastes like something you’d encounter from a high end craft brewery (sorry, but Genny is not craft beer). This is definitely the best beer to bear the ‘Gansett logo.

I poured a 16oz can into a nonic pint glass. It was canned on 10/28/14 and cost $2.70 ($0.23 per ounce).

Appearance: Dark black color with a tall, dark tan, frothy head which laces and retains very well.

Smell: Strong iced coffee/roasted malt aroma as well as standard dairy scent found in a milk stout.

Taste: The palette is quite familiar for a coffee stout, though I mean that as a compliment. An immediate sensation of coffee right away, as well as dark roasted malt and dry bitterness. Through the middle I detect some milky sweetness, possibly chocolate-like as well. It’s not quite a mocha flavor, but it’s close. The coffee re-emerges on the finish, even roastier and bitterer than at the beginning. The flavor lingers just as it does when drinking hot coffee, only without the heat. I was quite surprised there’s no tang or off-flavor of any kind here. This is a fine coffee stout, and the addition of lactose sugar gives it an added sweetness to give it a coffee & cream taste.

Drinkability: It seems like most coffee stouts tend to be higher gravity brews, but Narragansett Autocrat Coffee Milk Stout is quite lithe at only 5.3% ABV. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with consistent carbonation. It’s not quite velvety, but it’s far from the usual light, watery texture often found in beers of the ‘Gansett variety. It goes down smooth and the aftertaste, though bitter, is between tolerable and pleasant. This would pair well with any chocolate or vanilla dessert. 
Grade: 8/10

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