Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Steadfast Oatmeal Cream Stout

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (1337) - Albany, New York, USA - APR 29, 2015
People who are allergic to gluten don’t have much of a choice when it comes to beer, and especially not dark beer. I’m not saying Steadfast Oatmeal Cream Stout is a trailblazer, necessarily; however, it’s certainly rare to see a gluten-free stout. Much like previous offerings from the brewery, this one drinks just like a normal barley-based brew despite being made with sorghum. It’s well-balanced and easily drinkable – that’s something everyone can agree on despite their food allergies (or lack thereof).

I poured a 12oz bottle into a mug. There was no freshness date. Thanks to Jeremy and Drew for the bottle!

Appearance: Standard dark black color, though slightly “muddy” when the sediment is added. Initially pours to a two-finger, tan, soapy head, but it mostly fizzles away and leaves no lacing.

Smell: Deeply roasted malts (or, in this case – oats). Sweet lactose sugar. No sorghum scent (thankfully).

Taste: Surprisingly sweet right from the get-go. Notes of cola and milk chocolate dominate the first half of the palette. At the same time there’s an underlying dry bitterness. This is probably due more to the roasted oats and sorghum than the hops, though I do detect a classic earthy hop flavor. On the second half the roasted oats really emerge; akin to that of a classic stout. Though it’s also quite sweet – it reminds me a bit of peanut butter, actually. The lactose sugar lurks in the background throughout and accounts for a continuous, but restrained sweetness. I detect absolutely not sorghum twang here, which is very impressive. NOTE: This beer is apparently bottle-conditioned; it tastes better without the yeast (which imparts a sharp dryness) so decant into a class and leave the muddy sediment at the bottom of the bottle.

Drinkability: At 6% ABV, Steadfast Oatmeal Cream Stout is definitely a full-bodied beer. There’s not a moment where flavor isn’t alive in the mouth, though the texture itself is a tad thin. I will say it’s quite smooth and silky going down, but it does leave a lingering aftertaste of roasted oats. I dare say this is strong enough to stand up to a savory meal and maybe even pair with any vanilla-flavored dessert. 
Score: 8/10

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