Beer: Speedway Stout
Brewery: AleSmith Brewing Company
Style: American Double/Imperial Stout
Serving Style: Bottle
Glassware: Wine glass
Drinking Establishment: NJ
Primary Consumer: Kerensa
Sight: Pitch, impenetrable black. 1/2-inch frothy, soapy, dark mocha head that quickly recedes to a centimeter head filled with bubbles small and large. Very thick lacing.
Scent: Smells like diving into a barrel of fresh coffee beans. It also smells like the beginning of fall, between the scent of fresh chipped wood and fallen wet leaves. Turns into a heavy cream scent at the end, like a big mocha cream drink.
Flavor: Coffee, coffee, coffee. Very fresh coffee. Surprisingly little bitterness. Subtle sweet milk chocolate taste. And, um, I cannot taste the high ABV tag (a whopping 12%).
Feel: Medium, creamy mouthfeel with low-to-medium carbonation.
Concluding remarks: This is perfect. This San Diego monster has had notoriously nonexistent distribution in this region. (A friend used to occasionally bring me some from–New Hampshire? But it wasn’t available in NY? What the what?) Either way, suffice it to say, I was completely floored when I saw the Speedway Stout and the Horny Devil at my local Whole Foods (97th & Columbus, if you want to find a bottle). This was the most expensive beer I picked up this month (@ $14); but quickly felt justified, as I saw bottles of it being sold for $25-30 at local bars.
AleSmith’s Speedway Stout is brewed with “pound and pounds” of coffee beans from local coffee company Ryan’s Bros., and its caffeine content helps mitigate the sleepy I’ve-had-too-much-beer state that a 12% beer would normally put one in. What else can I say other than this is the best Stout I have had all month–it’s complex, balanced, sweet, bitter, caffeinated, alcoholic, has great mouthfeel…all in all, perfect!
Oh, and if you can find the barrel-aged Speedway Stout (best of luck to you), it was apparently rated the world’s best beer by Ratebeer.com. Seems like it would be pretty good.