If you thought hot buttered rums and spiked eggnogs were the only boozy options worthy of sipping this season, think again. One under the radar option for those eager for winter-sipping is stout beer. Typically dark in color, stouts come in several different varieties, including milk stout, oatmeal stout and imperial stout. Although stouts can be sipped all year long, winter usually welcomes a bevy of flavored stouts. For the pumpkin spice latte lovers, you can expect an assortment of pumpkin stouts. Care for something a little more unique? How about a stout beer that's brewed with habanero peppers?
No matter what type of stout you're a fan of, the following stouts should appeal to just about any taste.
Guinness Over The Moon Milk Stout
At only 5.3% ABV, Guinness' newly-released Over The Moon Milk Stout is perfect for casual sipping. As a milk stout, this particular brew is on the sweeter side (milk sugar is used in the brewing process). The end result is a stout beer that is both sweet and creamy, with dessert-y notes of cocoa, caramel, fresh coffee and sweet fruit.
Two Pitchers Bayou Milk Stout
The good times are sure to roll with Two Pitchers' Bayou Milk Stout, a brew that's crafted using New Orleans style coffee. Available from September to March, the Bayou Milk Stout is another offering that is deliciously sweet and creamy. The addition of spicy hops to this unique brew creates a well-rounded option.
Urban South Brewery El Chocolate Picante Stout
For those who live for a sweet and spicy pairing, Urban South Brewery's El Chocolate Picante Stout is quite the treat. This particular stout is bold in its deliciousness, having been aged in Jameson Irish Whiskey barrels. The flavors don't stop there though. Louisiana Pepper Exchange orange habanero are added to the brew and are then tastily balanced out with milk chocolate and cinnamon.
Rogue Double Chocolate Stout
Double the chocolate is always a good idea, even when it comes to stouts. Chocolate lovers may find themselves immediately drawn to Rogue's Double Chocolate stout, a stout that leans heavily on the dessert-y side with a flavor profile reminiscent of chocolate syrup. Notes of vanilla and a rich, creamy taste seal the deal with this stout.
Burnt Hickory Big Shanty Graham Cracker Stout
If you thought graham crackers were relegated to simply serving as the delicious backbone to a s'mores then you're in for quite the surprise. The graham cracker serves as the inspiration behind Georgia-based Burnt Hickory's Big Shanty Graham Cracker Stout. Amazingly enough, this boozy offering from Burnt Hickory is made using real graham cracker crumbs and honey. Don't let these sweet additions fool you, this stout still manages to keep its hoppy bitterness.
Boulevard Whiskey Barrel Stout
You don't have to be a hardcore stout sipper to know that there's a plentiful number of options when it comes to barrel-aged stouts. Breweries both small and large seem eager to toss their brews into whiskey or other barrels to gift it with those warm, spicy notes. Such a variety of options can make choosing a barrel-aged stout tricky, but Boulevard Brewing Co. is here to remedy that problem with their Whiskey Barrel Stout. Brimming with flavor, this stout tastes of vanilla, espresso, whiskey, chocolate, roasted grain and plums. Additionally, the Whiskey Barrel Stout stands at an unwavering 11.8% ABV.
Good People Coffee Oatmeal Stout
Described as being both "complex and flavorful," the Coffee Oatmeal Stout from Good People prides itself on its ability to deliver big when it comes to robust coffee flavor, but also balance things out with a good helping of hops. Although this Coffee Oatmeal Stout is decadent and rich enough to serve as its own dessert, it does pair well with various chocolates and desserts.
For a more savory pairing, opt for shellfish or smoked meats.
Samuel Smith's Organic Chocolate Stout
Hailing from the United Kingdom, Samuel Smith's Organic Chocolate Stout is a favorite among brew enthusiasts, and for good reason. For one, Samuel Smith's Organic Chocolate is brewed using actual well water. And for those who prefer only the best of ingredients in their stout, this brew calls for roasted organic chocolate malt and organic cocoa. The result is a rich stout that will have you swapping out your boozy hot chocolate in no time.
Breckenridge Nitro Chocolate Orange Stout
The combination of chocolate and orange is one that is typically found at sweets-laden confectioneries and treat-filled bakeries. But leave it to a stout beer to artfully combine the two flavors for a brew that is a seasonal powerhouse. Breckenridge has managed to do just that with their Nitro Chocolate Orange Stout. Brewed with orange zest and locally-sourced cacao, Nitro Chocolate Orange Stout is a seasonal offering that is sweet, citrus-y and an all-around treat for the winter months.
Terrapin Wake-n-Bake Coffee Oatmeal Imperial Stout
Serving as the result of a collaboration between the Athens, Georgia-based Terrapin Beer Co. and Jittery Joes, Wake-n-Bake Coffee Oatmeal Imperial Stout is a full-bodied stout that is reminiscent of that inviting, first cup of coffee in the morning. And with an 8.1% ABV it might even be as strong your morning cup of Joe.
Bell's Cherry Stout
Chocolate covered cherries, anyone? That's precisely the flavor profile you'll be met with after a sip of Bell's Cherry Stout. There is a bit of espresso on the aroma end, but there's plenty of chocolate richness and welcome cherry tartness on the taste end. Bell's Cherry Stout is a perfect pick for those who like their stouts with subtle notes of plum fruit.
New Holland Dragon's Milk Reserve: Salted Caramel
When it comes to brew, salted caramel is a flavor that's pretty rare. This makes New Holland's Dragon's Milk Reserve: Salted Caramel that much more of a bold selection. As expected, there are notes of creamy caramel and sweet vanilla, making this stout heavy on the indulgent side.