In a craft beer style loaded with barrel-aged treatments, limited releases and rising prices, it’s becoming all too easy for the traditional stout to get lost in the shuffle. While the bourbon barrel, vanilla bean, ancho chili infused rarities of the world continue to hold a special place in the collective heart of the craft beer community, there’s still a multitude of readily available, delicious stouts available on shelves as we speak (or drink). Hit up your local store today and you should have no trouble finding most of these tasty stouts from California to the UK.
Schlafly Coffee Stout – Brewed with local St. Louis roasters, Kaldi’s Coffee, this is a smooth, creamy, drinkable seasonal brew perfect for the wintertime. While other coffee-infused beers can become bitter, Schlafly utilized a cold toddy extraction process to limit acidity. 5.7% abv, available from November to March in six packs.
Lagunitas Cappuccino Stout – A rich, warming, cappuccino-laced creation from one of Northern California’s most prominent breweries. Full bodied, creamy texture; brewed with chocolate and local coffee – how could you go wrong? 9.2% abv, available seasonally in 22 oz. bottles.
Left Hand Nitro Milk Stout – Wonderfully creamy body, mildly sweet flavors and a dose of milk chocolate bring this tasty brew together. While the notes of cream, mocha and brown sugar are nice, the silky smooth body is where this one shines. 6% abv, available year-round in six packs.
21st Amendment Marooned on Hog Island – Brewed with chocolate malts, rolled oats and the special addition of Hog Island Sweetwater oyster shells, this is a robust, full-flavored stout commemorating the season. Don’t be turned off by the oysters though, Marooned is still a nice addition to the shelves full of stouts in 2013. 7.9% abv, limited availability in canned four packs.
Flying Dog Pearl Necklace Oyster Stout – Originally a one-off release, Flying Dog turned this dry stout crafted with Rappahannock River oysters into a regular item after a largely positive response from local drinkers. Proceeds benefit the Oyster Recovery Partnership, which works to preserve shellfish in the Chesapeake Bay. 5.5% abv, available year-round in six packs.
Young’s Double Chocolate Stout – Brewed with a special blend of chocolate malts, sugars and dark chocolate, this award-winning classic remains one of the benchmarks for the style. Smooth and refreshing on the tongue without a cloying sweetness, this is a chocolate stout for the masses. 5.2% abv, available year round in 500mL bottles and nitro-cans.