Friday, November 30, 2012

Gahan Sydney Street Stout - PEI Brewing Company (Canada - PEI - Charlottetown)

Gahan Sydney Street Premium Stout - PEI Brewing Company (Canada - PEI) 5.2%

Pitch black in a glass, an impressive velvety head of tiny bubbles with good lacing. Coffee, grain, brown bread aroma, chocolate and hints of smoke like you get from bread toasted to point of being nearly charred.

Initially, a bitter dark chocolate taste so strong and distinct it seems like they could have actually used chocolate although there is no indication that they actually did. I view the use of actual chocolate in stouts as practically "cheating" when a good brewmaster can work such magic with judicious use of different types of malted barley. I have exceptions for my rule to allow for desert beers and other creative uses, and I'm certainly not a Reinheitsgebot-ist that pooh-poohs the use of any ingredients other than water, malt, hops and yeast but I digress. The dark chocolate flavour lasts throughout but takes a step back to allow some wooden tones, some bread flavours and a touch of hops to come through as well. The mouthfeel is creamy but not heavy.

I very much like this limited edition bottled stout and I hope the PEI Brewing Company sees fit to add Sydney Street Stout to their current roster of 1772 IPA, Sir John A Honey Wheat, Iron Horse Brown and Island Red which are all available in bottle in Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and soon Nova Scotia.

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