Preamble: Porter is fast becoming a favourite; however, given the choice between Porter and Stout, the latter would always come first. Having said that, Stout and Porter have an intertwined history, Stout being the darker, stronger version of Porter; whilst the two styles are often considered two separate styles (arguably) – I have seen groupings that consider Stouts a version of Porter, Porters and Stout being separate, and even Porter part of the Stout family – Stout Porter was the original name for Stout so it shouldn’t take too much mind bending to like one if you like the other. Traditionally, Porter was a blend of brown ale, pale ale, and ‘stale’ or well matured ale, now I would like to think that ‘stale’ beer is used less frequently in beers (you never know).
The Beer: Samuel Smith’s Taddy Porter, 5% abv, English Porter.
Aroma: Malty, fruity (raisins, or think about “winter fruits” preserve)
Appearance: Very dark brown, almost black; vanilla-tan head, fluffy with staying power
Taste: Bitter but not too harsh, darker roasted but subtle, but this leads in to a delicate treacle-toffee taste, some dark roast elements creep in
Mouthfeel: velvety, some of that lightly-dark roasted-toffee-bitter after taste.
Very enjoyable. You get some of the darker side of the roastings in there, but it does edge more on the delicately toasted side so there is a balance very much in evidence. The toffee-caramel traces in there make the substance slightly “sweeter” but we are not talking a mouthful of sugary sweet substance; essentially it takes the edge of the bitterness if it was hanging around. Another bottle of joy from Tadcaster.
Website: Samuel Smith’s Brewery