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Beer question....(Stouts)

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Beer question....(Stouts)

So, I'm a big fan of dark beer. In particular I enjoy Guinness, Honey Brown, & Newcastle.

So dark beer with a lot of flavor.

While I'm in London, are there any brands of beer I should look out for to try? Where I'm from there are so many micro-brews with great flavors and I'd love to try some local favorites while I'm in England.

Any suggestions?

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1. Re: Beer question....(Stouts)


The Campaign for Real Ale is a good place to start, as you'll find the real ales so much better than some bottled beers or lagers on tap.

mick67 and adamhornets are two of the beer aficionados on the forum - Adam is on holiday, but mick should be around in the next couple of days. There are a handful of other TALFers with preferences for a proper pint, so hang on for more answers tomorrow or the next day.

www.fancyapint.com is a good source for searching out proper pubs; four and five pint rated pubs are worth a visit, for the most part.

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2. Re: Beer question....(Stouts)

Murphys Stout is OK

For Dark or strong beers try:

Fullers - ESB (London Brewery)

Youngs - Special (London Brewery)

Courage - Directors (Was a London Brewery)

Adnams - Broadside (Suffolk Brewery)

Greene King - Abbot Ale (Suffolk Brewery)

Wadworth - 6X (Wiltshire Brewery)

Theakston - Old Peculiar and XB (Yorkshire Brewery)

Ruddles - County (Rutland Brewery)

There are many others, and if you travel further into the Midlands look for some Mild, and especially any Dark Mild, that can be a good comparison to Stout.

In the winter some breweries make Porters, again these compare well to Stout.

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3. Re: Beer question....(Stouts)

If you step up to the bar in the pubs, just ask the bartender for a sample of the stouts they have on tap. Tell them what you like and they are usually more than happy to let you sample to find one you like before you order a pint. It's a tough job having to sample beer, but I'm sure you're up to the task.

(Watch out for the Old Peculiar, good but rather high alcohol content...not that I know from personal experience or anything :)

Sydney, Australia
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4. Re: Beer question....(Stouts)

I think you'll find a lot of our "bitter" or "ale" interesting. There are hundreds (if not even thousands) of these styles which are the speciality of these islands

There are national brands, but you'll generally do much better to sample local brews - and make sure you're getting "real ale", which is a live, unpasteurised beer which usually (not always, sometimes they'll have barrels behind the bar and run it straight from that) comes from distinctive handpumps which are mounted on the bar - you can't miss them

These handpumps conveniently have a badge on them which will give you the name of the beer - just ask for a pint or a half of whichever takes your fancy. Virtually all real ale will have have *way* more flavour than any pale (lager) beer and (IMO) much more than stuff like Newcastle Brown as well

There are real stouts available but they're less common - pubs will always have Guinness, and sometimes other stouts, but they're usually pasteurised and come from an electric pump. OK if you like that sort of thing

But I reckon you'd enjoy some of our real ale, so give it a try ;)

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5. Re: Beer question....(Stouts)

As pintpot, points out, 'Stouts' isn't quite the right terminology, Guinness being the only one that really fits that description. The others are bitters.

You could add London Pride to the earlier list, and I'd also go with Wadworths 6X and Fullers ESB as being two of the best.

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6. Re: Beer question....(Stouts)

I think stout, is only stout if it's made with malt or black unmalted barley. If it's not, then it will be bitter or ale.

You don't see too many stouts around these days, used to be called Porter and had many different flavour varieties including Oyster of all things.

You'll find some bottled varieties from small producers, just ask the barman, but few on tap.

Guiness is Irish, on draught is everywhere in London although it's just not the same as drinking it Dublin. Maybe it doesn't travel, I remember the fantastic Guiness in Dublin, absolute nectar! But then visiting Cork just 150 miles away and the locals telling me to drink Murphys because it's better in Cork, brewed locally. They were right.

If I lived in Dublin, I'd drink Guiness all the time, great watching them pour it correctly, takes a good 10 mins. With glasses filled to different stsages along the bar:-)

Happy hunting.


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7. Re: Beer question....(Stouts)

Agree with Fullers ESB & Old Peculiar, two of my very favs :-)

You might also like to try Jennings Sneck Lifter, dark, tasty & 5.1 on the Richter Scale lol.

Dublin, Ireland
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8. Re: Beer question....(Stouts)

There's a branch of the Dublin microbrewery "The Porterhouse" in Maiden Lane in Covent Garden. They make a delicious oyster stout (the first time I've every seen a beer labelled "not suitable for vegetarians"!). Their plain porter is also very quaffable.


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9. Re: Beer question....(Stouts)


you don't say when or for how long you will be in London If you are here at the begining of May, then the Reading Beer Festival is on (www.readingbeerfestival.org.uk)which will have about 450 beers of which a good proportion will be dark. Reading is about 30 mins fast train ride from London. As others have mentioned go to the CAMRA website and look at the Beer Festival calendar which will show you forthcoming events for the rest of the year, some of which will be in the London area.

If you are coming in August, the Great British Beer Festival at Earls Court is the one!


Bath, UK
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10. Re: Beer question....(Stouts)

The ones I like are Wadworth 6X (a local one for me), any of the Bath Ales (not widely available outside Bath though), and London Pride. Other than that, I just pick and choose depending on what I see on the bar. One I've had once it Barn Owl (Cotleigh Brewery). Very nice, but hard to find.