Online shopping. Yes.
Why anyone would get out of bed, take a shower, and want to interact with society nowadays? We do that enough Monday through Friday… the last thing I want on my Saturday morning is to be cut off by some jerk on my way to get some good beer, when only to arrive at the store, I realized I’ve forgotten my wallet. I mean… hypothetically speaking. Not like that ever happened. Thank god for the miracle of e-retail. Using the interweb, I got a new set of brews that have arrived at my doorstep and this review is from another beer out west. Ninkasi Oatis – from the tree loving state of Oregon. I figured oatmeal stouts are a pretty hard thing to mess up. I’ve never really had one that disappointed. Surly this would make me proud… let’s run those numbers.
Appearance: Black, can’t see though it, espresso foam. Pours like a stout (shocking right?) however, the 7.2% ABV makes that head go away awfully quick. One thing that stood out to me with this beer was that after I pried the cap, there was what looked to be like rust spots underneath it. I talked myself out of that rationalizing that it had to be parts of the malt? But aren’t stouts filtered? Whatever… I had a tetanus shot when I was little. Those last forever right?
Smell: Malt, alcohol, toffy, chocolate, and some whipped cream. Definitely has a character to it with that creamy smell.
Taste: This will be a short one. Light in body for a stout… already a bit disappointed by that. The taste up front has more bitter notes than expecting. In the middle, you get the malt/chocolate/espresso flavor, but then it takes a turn. It finishes with a burnt cigar taste that lingers for a bit. The hops in the brew then take you past the finish line. Strange beer, and not the unique, intriguing strange. It’s more of a, “What were they going for with this?” strange. It’s too bitter to be an enjoyable stout and too burnt to be a black IPA. The flavors in here don’t mix well and for that its grade suffers.
Overall, I’d give this beer a C. There are far better stouts out there worthy of your time than this beer, and seeing that it’s from the west coast, residents on the Atlantic side are much better off reaching for the ubiquitous Samuel Smith (and will save a Lincoln by doing so). I understand Ninkasi is trying to balance the flavors out with this brew, but when I read, “Oatmeal Stout,” the only bitterness I want comes from the roasted grain. If it was labeled a Black IPA, I would be psychologically prepared for the hops, but it doesn’t make sense in a stout. If you are a hop head but like to drink with the seasons, then try this out, if not, spend your money on something else. The most enjoyable part of this review was trying out the new extension tube for my camera and monitoring my body for muscle spasms for the next week (actually, that’s not enjoyable at all…) Two weeks later, no tetanus! Good job Ninkasi…