Beer: Murphy’s Stout
Brewery: Murphy Brewing
Style: Irish Dry Stout
Serving Style: Nitro-can
Glassware: Pint glass
Drinking Establishment: Kerensa’s kitchen
Primary Consumer: Kerensa
Sight: Like every good Irish Stout that comes in a nitro-can, Murphy’s Irish Stout has a cascading pour (it looks like making sand art) that levels to a perfect creamy, clean, half-inch head.
Scent: One-note roasted malt aroma.
Flavor: Nearly one-note as well; mostly roasted malt taste with a very slight bitterness at the end. There’s a bit of a cream, lactose flavor as well. Maybe a precious bit of milk chocolate. Maybe.
Feel: This is one of the first beers I have had this year in which the body and the head of the beer feel completely different. While both are creamy, the head has a slight frothy texture that lingers on my lips, while the body has zero carbonation. As a good Irish Stout should be!
Incredibly smooth and easy on the mouth. This is a simple beer, but as one of the classic Irish Stouts, this is one to which impostors are compared: Murphy has been brewing this recipe since 1856! HOWEVER, while I appreciate the historicity of this beer, perhaps it is time to update the flavor profile. We are modern people, after all, with a more refined and nuanced palette, thanks to the introduction of hyper-artificial flavoring.
Concluding remarks: I kept reaching for the fancy neo-Stouts, with their high ABV and sharp labels designed by young guys and gals with thick glasses. So, when I went grocery shopping for the first time in a month (I’m finishing up my third and last year of graduate school), I felt compelled to pick up a can of Murphy’s…one of the remaining few that were not taken home for St. Patrick’s Day. The verdict? While it doesn’t immediately have me packing my bags for Ireland, I prefer it to the cult of Guinness, if only because I don’t feel like I’ve just consumed a bathtub filled with malt. There’s a reason you don’t hear people going around saying “Murphy’s Irish Stout is like a meal” the way they do Guinness. If you’re in the mood for a creamy, low-carbonated beer, this is a fine one to go for. It’s shockingly creamy and the mouthfeel is actually more enjoyable than the flavor. Not bad for the style, but I won’t be stocking my fridge with cans o’ Murphy, either. Also, it’s a good choice if you are having a working lunch or dinner, as this guy won’t do anything to affect your motor skills or mental capacity.