Brewer Approved: The Best Stouts For Fall Drinking
Stouts are malty, rich, and full of chocolate and coffee flavors (even if they don’t contain either), making them the perfect brew to sip on crisp fall nights. Whether you choose a milk stout, dry stout, or barrel-aged stout, you’re in for some satisfying drinking. We asked brewers to tell us their favorite stouts for autumnal imbibing. Some are household names, others are popular among craft drinkers, and others aren’t so well known. What we do know is that we’d be happy to drink down each and every one.
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“I like to sip on Allagash’s Black when the days start to get shorter and temps drop. At 7.5 percent ABV, it’s a solid transitional stout before the heavy hitters later in the season.” – Matt McCall, Brewmaster at Coney Island Brewing
“You can't go wrong with a Guinness Draught Stout. It's so light and quaffable. Here in San Diego ‘fall’ is still 75 and sunny, so I'm going to grab something that is thirst-quenching and sessionable. If we do get some of those rare cooler days, their Foreign style stout is very nice.” – Yiga Miyashiro, senior director of brewery operations at Saint Archer Brewing Co.
Left Hand Milk Stout
“I personally believe that stout season lasts all year long, but in the late summer months, when the days are still hot but the nights are nice and cool, I gravitate towards something smooth and creamy, with just enough sweetness to balance a moderately prominent roasted malt character, and Left Hand's Nitro Milk Stout fits the bill perfectly. Admittedly, nitro beers aren't usually my preference, but Left Hand has perfected the nitro process in bottles, resulting in a perfectly cascading head and velvety smooth mouthfeel.” – Neil Fisher, co-owner and head brewer at WeldWerks Brewing Co.
Photo: Left Hand
North Park Enright's Dry Irish Stout
“I really like a local beer from North Park Beer Co. called Enright’s Dry Irish Stout. It has layers of roast and chocolate notes, but its lower ABV and light body make it a great beer to bridge the gap in seasons.” – Mark Theisen, head brewer at Coronado Brewing Co.
Photo: North Park Beer
Guinness Extra Foreign Stout
“If you want to get a taste of what fall will bring, grab a Guinness Foreign Extra Stout. It's loaded with all of the great roast malt character of traditional Guinness plus a layer of fruity flavor and aroma on top. This will keep you warm as the weather starts to turn.” – Steve Sanderson, founder and brewer at RiverWalk Brewing Company
Deschutes Obsidian Stout
“I’d have to go with Deschutes Obsidian Stout. The roasty flavors of chocolate and coffee are perfect for cooler weather but not too heavy.” – Paul Friedheim, lead brewer at Thirsty Monk Brewing
Horse & Dragon Sad Panda
“Sad Panda coffee stout by Horse & Dragon. It has a pretty light body and mild coffee flavor that allows you to drink a few even if there’s some heat outside.” –Kelly McKnight, pilot brewer at New Belgium
Photo: Horse & Dragon
Sierra Nevada Stout
“Finding Sierra Nevada Stout is worth the effort. Rich, malty, and the perfect beer to start fall of right. The brewery is obviously known for its pale ale, but this one isn’t to be missed.” – Joe Connolly, director of Springdale Beer
Photo: Sierra Nevada