Samuel Smith’s Brewery in Tadcaster, England has been producing popular and stunning brews since 1758. That’s when they sunk their first and current well from which the water they use in the brewing process is drawn. Brews produced at The Old Brewery in North Yorkshire include a traditional bitter, an Oatmeal Stout, several fruit beers, and now a Chocolate Stout.
According to a press release from Samuel Smith’s, “After months of test brews and tastings, the Organic Chocolate Stout was released in September 2012. In the months since the release, we have seen incredible sales levels and wide spread enthusiasm for the new addition to the Smith family of classic brews.”
Sticklers for tradition, the brewers at Samuel Smith’s still use the old methods of brewing including the employment of the Yorkshire Square system of fermentation. This process uses stone “squares” into which fermenting wort is pumped and cycled through for up to six days. This keeps the yeast in contact with the wort instead of it settling to the bottom of the fermentation vessel. The squares, typically made of Welsh slate, are only used in about four breweries any more. The brewery also employs their own barrel coopers to build and maintain the wooden barrels used for cask-conditioning their brews.
Reviews on sites such as RateBeer.com are raving about the new addition to the Samuel Smith’s lineup. One taster said, “I don’t have a strong sense of smell, but could smell this thing from a few feet away. Really potent.” The brew is described as full-bodied with big roasted malt aromas and flavors that produce a pronounced chocolate flavor with a deep, satisfying finish. As an added bonus, the brew is certifies as both organic and vegan.
This time of year Christmas beers seem to be flooding the shelves of your local beer purveyor. The timing of the release of this brew could not have been better. At 5% ABV, this brew is perfect as an after dinner pint or for curling up in front of a fireplace with. The brewery recommends that the beer be served at 51 degrees in a traditional English pint glass.