Dr. M nr. 17.5 – Staut Karsk

Staut Karsk by Dr. M, Stout, 5.8% ABV, 60 IBU.

Dr. M nr. 17.5 (don't ask), enjoyed 11 months after bottling.

Dr. M nr. 17.5 (don’t ask), enjoyed 11 months after bottling.

I got this bottle as a birthday present from the brewer a month ago, and I’m rating it today, on his birthday. Neat? The label doesn’t want to state whether this is a stout or a porter, let’s see which style I’d go for!

A huge head.

A huge head. 11 months in the bottle was probably too long…

It opens with a loud PSSST!, and pours a deep brown body, with a very huge, beige head. This looks like another over-carbonated brew, Dr. M… The head is long-lived and reduces to a fully lasting layer, and patches of foam sticks to the glass.

The aroma is strong and dark malty, with notes of coffee and ash. Also a faint fruitiness and traces of chalk, the latter probably caused by the light gushing.

Strong, malty and somewhat unclean yeasty flavour. Again very dark roasted malt, coffee and ash. In my book this is a stout, there is far too little chocolate to be called a porter (ok, let’s not start the “all porters are stouts, and in the old days in London…”-debate all over again). There is a light fruity background, and a medicinal and solventy feel. The taste is moderate sweet and the long-lasting finish is moderate bitter and a bit unpleasant. The bitterness seems a bit out of style, and there is very little hops in the aroma and flavour to accompany this bite.

It’s got quite a full body for such a low ABV brew and the texture is oily. Although the carbonation initially was pretty fizzy,  the beer very soon loses most of its bubbles and it ends up softly carbonated.

Conclusion: a bit dirty and unclean, and I suspect that there’s a little infection going on. Happy birthday!

Aroma:      5/10
Appearance: 4/5
Taste:      4/10
Palate:     3/5
Overall:    8/20
Ratebeer score: 2.4/5.0


ClubGonzo’s Raspberry Beret

Raspberry Beret by ClubGonzo, Porter/Fruit Beer, 6.2% ABV, 44 IBU.

I love porters. I love liquorice. I love raspberries. My highest rated beer ever on Ratebeer is a dark beer with raspberries. So, a porter with liquorice root and raspberries, how can this possibly go wrong?

ClubGonzo's Raspberry Beret.

ClubGonzo’s Raspberry Beret, batch no. 54, contract brew no. 8.

It pours a very viscous-looking, somewhat murky and pitch black body with a small-ish brown head that leaves some lacing on my glass.

Raspberry Beret in the glass. And the Beer With Me rating table in the reflection in the glass.

Raspberry Beret in the glass. And the Beer With Me rating table in the reflection in the glass.

The aroma is strong and is dominated by dark roasted malt, quite burnt for a porter (or at least, for my kind of porter). There is a good amount of coffee and some chocolate further back. I do detect some hints of liquorice as well, but I would never have guessed that this one is brewed with liquorice root. It’s a bit fruity, but I’m not able to pinpoint the raspberries.

But in the mouth… Wow. Simply wow. The salty liquorice, the raspberries, chocolate and coffee blend perfectly together, no one overshining the other. A magnificent mix of delicious flavours! The only thing I could wish for is a tad less dark roasted malt. The taste is moderate sweet and moderate bitter.

The mouthfeel is thick and creamy, this is almost like drinking a smoothie. The carbonation is soft, and there is some dryness in the long-lasting finish.

Conclusion: a close to perfect mix of raspberries and liquorice. Brew me an imperial version of this one at 10% ABV/75 IBU, and add some cocoa nibs and vanilla, and I’ll have a new favourite beer!

Aroma:      6/10
Appearance: 4/5
Taste:      8/10
Palate:     4/5
Overall:    15/20
Ratebeer score: 3.7/5.0