Now here’s a beer that’s a bit different than all the rest that I’ve tried recently. I’ve mostly been drinking imported stuff so far with a sprinkle of American beers here and there but Samuel Smith is definitely a beer that stands on its own island. Why? Because chocolate and beer isn’t typically the first thing that comes to mind when you’re feeling like downing a few brewski’s. And this Samuel Smith Organic Chocolate Stout is no exception. Now, granted, in the craft beers and microbrews industry, it isn’t a new thing for those industries to be making beers that tread on highly experimental flavors. But for an imported beer, such as this, to be dabbling in infusing chocolate flavors to beer and making it balanced is something I don’t regularly see for imported beers.
I would say that the body is something like medium to heavy but is still fairly drinkable. It has a fairly strong but pleasant chocolate smell right when you pop the cap, which actually remains pretty much indefinitely so as long as you still have beer in the bottle. I would say that the chocolate flavor won’t become apparent until after you have swallowed the beer and it hits the back of your throat. And if you spray it across your palate, there’s a bit of that chocolate bitterness that you’ll taste on the sides of your tongue. Thankfully though, it won’t really linger for all that long. Plus, strangely enough, you’ll also taste some of the bitter aspects of the chocolate flavor, just as you would if you ate a piece of 70% real cacao chocolate bar. On top of that, when you sip the beer and breathe in some air through your mouth at the same time, suddenly the chocolate flavor sweets up a bit. Carbonation was fairly minimal in this beer like the rest of the imported beers I’ve had so far. I’d say that carbonation escapes at a fairly rapid rate for this particular beer.
Lastly, I’d like to say that just when you’ve drank about half way past the bottle, some other unsightly flavors become apparent. I’m not entirely sure if it’s because the carbonation is gone or oxidation is occurring faster than normal for this beer but it’s almost like eating a stale piece of chocolate where the flavor of the chocolate has turned a bit sour, a bit too dry, and doesn’t go down very smoothly. But the first few sips are probably the best parts of this beer. Otherwise, the last half to the last quarter of the beer is not as great as the first half. It does leave a bit of a sticky residue on one’s lip but it’s not entirely unpleasant in that respect.
All in all, this beer was definitely unique on its own level and quite tasty for the first half of the beer but this is not a beer that I would to buy drink on a regular basis. It’s flavor is, for lack of a better way to describe it, too complicated for sipping. You’d have to really focus in on its flavor profile to really enjoy it. If you were to drink it like you would on any mass produced beer, I think that you’ll find this beer quite disappointing. At a measly 5% ABV, it definitely won’t give you that buzz on your first bottle. Otherwise, for novelty sake, I think it’s a beer that’s worth trying.