Life

Bartenders Shout Out The Stout Beers They Never Ever Tire Of

Even if you’ve rarely tried stout beers (and there are oh so many great ones to check out!), there’s a pretty good chance you’ve at least had a pint of Guinness or two. It’s one of the most popular beers in the world, after all. The dry Irish stout is known for its creamy, coffee, and chocolate-toasted malt flavors. And while Guinness is a good example of the style, countless other stouts also deserve your attention.

If you do enjoy the flavor profile of Guinness — well, you’re in luck. Many stouts also carry espresso, toasted malts, and chocolate flavors (on top of other notes, depending on their unique ingredients). And that’s just scratching the surface of what a stout can be.

To find you a few new brews to test this month, we asked a handful of well-known bartenders to tell us the single stout (imperial, barrel-aged, Irish stout, whatever) that they never get tired of drinking. Keep scrolling to see all of their selections!

Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout

Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout
Brooklyn

Lewis Caputa, lead bartender at Rosina Cocktail Lounge in Las Vegas

ABV: 10%

Average Price: $13 for a six-pack

Why This Beer?

As chocolate stouts go, this one is my favorite because I feel that the rich dark chocolate, coffee notes, and toasted malts really stand out.

Stone Xocoveza

Stone Xocoveza
Stone

Daniel Yang, lead bartender at Electra Cocktail Club in Las Vegas

ABV: 8.1%

Average Price: $17 for a six-pack

Why This Beer?

Granted, I am not much of a stout drinker. But given the option to only drink one stout, I would pick Stone Xocoveza Imperial Stout every time. This rich cocoa and cinnamon forward stout hits all the notes. Having a touch of bitterness and subtle sweetness (preying upon my love of coffee), you won’t find a lack of complexity.

Inspired by Mexican hot chocolate this enchanting brew gives me holiday vibes even without the Christmas tree that I’ve been procrastinating on putting away.

Flying Dog Pearl Necklace Oyster Stout

Flying Dog Pearl Necklace Oyster Stout
Flying Dog

Subhash Sankar, head mixologist at Alaia Belize in San Pedro Town, Belize

ABV: 5.5%

Average Price: $11 for a six-pack

Why This Beer?

Flying Dog Pearl Necklace Oyster Stout was originally a limited release from Flying Dog last year. This seldom-seen stout style is so rare because it’s made with real oysters. It doesn’t taste like oysters, luckily. But it does have hints of coffee, chocolate, and toasted malts.

Stone Imperial Russian Stout

Stone Imperial Russian Stout
Stone

Josue Villacis, head bartender at MILA Restaurant in Miami

ABV: 10.8%

Average Price: $11 for a 22-ounce bottle

Why This Beer?

Stone Imperial Russian Stout has to be my pick. It has nice coffee, cocoa, and hazelnut notes and it’s also produced one of my favorite brewers in California.

Mother’s Brewing Winter Grind

Mother’s Brewing Winter Grind
Mother

Emily Lawson, bartender and founder of Pink House Alchemy in Fayetteville, Arkansas

ABV: 6%

Average Price: Limited Availability

Why This Beer?

I can’t get enough of Mother’s Brewing Company’s Winter Grind. It’s rich and creamy with the added hit of cold-brewed coffee making it the perfect winter daytime sipper.

Napa Smith Black Chasm

Napa Smith Black Chasm
Napa Smith

Robert McCarthy, bartender at Seven Square Taproom in San Francisco

ABV: 6.8%

Average Price: Limited Availability

Why This Beer?

Napa Smith Black Chasm is hard to beat. It has flavors of intense vanilla, toasted malt, oatmeal, and hints of rye and is finished off in bourbon barrels.

Southern Tier Nitro Hot Cocoa

Southern Tier Nitro Hot Cocoa
Southern Tier

Christopher Devern, lead bartender at Red Owl Tavern in Philadelphia

ABV: 10%

Average Price: $14 for a four-pack

Why This Beer?

Southern Tier Nitro Hot Cocoa Imperial Milk Stout has notes of cold hot cocoa, is creamy and silky bodied, and comes in at ten percent ABV. I could definitely drink this stout for the rest of winter and every winter in the future. It’s the season for hot chocolate in beer form.

Half Acre Vanilla Big Hugs

Half Acre Vanilla Big Hugs
Half Acre

Mark Phelan, beverage director of 16″ On Center in Chicago

ABV: 10%

Average Price: $12 for a 22-ounce bottle

Why This Beer?

Let’s live a little and go big with Half Acre’s Vanilla Big Hugs. Complex and layered with coffee and vanilla undertones, it sips warm and cozy just like the name suggests.

Who wouldn’t want big hugs forever?

Left Hand Milk Stout

Left Hand Milk Stout
Left Hand

John “Fitzy” Fitzpatrick, spiritual advisor at Warren American Whiskey Kitchen in Delray, Florida

ABV: 6%

Average Price: $11 for a six-pack

Why This Beer?

Left Hand Milk Stout is one of those unique brews that always delivers a smooth, creamy, and delicious flavor. Easy drinking and not too heavy. It’s even better if it’s a nitro pour.

Barreled Souls 10 Cents Gets You Nuts

Barreled Souls 10 Cents Gets You Nuts
Barreled Souls

Ally O’Keefe, bartender at The Bower in New Orleans

ABV: 12.9%

Average Price: Limited Availability

Why This Beer?

Barreled Souls 10 Cents Gets You Nuts is a big, boozy dessert-like, bourbon-drowned bananas foster. It has flavors of molasses, peanut shells, banana puree, and wet campfire wood with a big enough malt backbone to balance it out.

Allagash North Sky

Allagash North Sky
Allagash

Justin Wilson, lead bartender at The Kimpton Sylvan in Atlanta

ABV: 7.5%

Average Price: $13 for a four-pack of 16-ounce cans

Why This Beer?

Allagash North Sky hands down. It’s filled with nice roasted malt with a little bit of hop. It’s very well-rounded and drinks a little too easy for a stout, if you know what I mean.

Wild Field Mountain Moonlight

Wild Field Mountain Moonlight
Wild Field

Alejandro Mendoza, restaurant and bar manager at Hotel SLO in San Luis Obispo, California

ABV: 6.3%

Average Price: Limited Availability

Why This Beer?

Wild Fields (out of Atascadero, California) Mountain Moonlight Oatmeal Stout is my go-to. This beer is bursting with rich chocolate and espresso flavors. It’s sweet, rich, and decadent. What’s not to love?

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