2/7/18: Short's Brewing Company's S'more Stout

2:48 PM

Well, well, well. Here we are again. February. I hope your 2018 is going. Mine certainly is. Eventually Michelle and I will send out our save-the-dates and finalize things for our June wedding. But, as it stands, we're nowhere near done with everything that'll take. And we don't have a house yet.

Oh! And the blog turned three two weeks ago last Sunday. In celebration, something's occured. Look up top, at your URL bar. See anything new? No? Maybe? You should--John Likes Beer has its own domain now: johnlikesbeer.com (don't worry, johnlikesbeer.blogspot.com still redirects here). Now, if I could only find some way to monetize this thing, I'd be all set.

Anyway, on the docket today is a beer that I'm starting to believe is probably quintessential for a cold and murky sundown like what Cincinnati's about to experience, a beer that promises to be the next best thing to a campfire. That beer is, of course, Short's' S'more Stout. Try saying that one five times fast.

Before I go any further, please allow me to direct you to battleforthenet.com. Reach out to your representatives. Tell them to overrule the FCC and keep the internet a fair and open resource for all.

Now, assuming you've done that, let's turn our collective attention to Short's Brewing Company. Since it's been quite some time since I've talked about Short's (the one time it's been on the blog was in 2015), give me a moment to introduce them. Joe Short, the company's founder, registered Short's Brewing Company as a Michigan business in 2002. He'd gained sufficient experience making beer for other people by that time and decided strike out on his own. He was twenty-two at the time (yes, I do feel particularly unaccomplished as I'm writing this sentence). Since then, the brewery (which officially opened in 2004) has undergone some pretty hefty renovations and they now even have a cider line that's just begging me to check it out. If this brief introduction did anything to whet your appetite for the brewery, check out their "Our Story" page, which includs an embedded mini-doc on the Bellaire-based company.

S'more Stout (that link'll take you to its official page) is a speciality stout brewed with graham, mallow, smoked malt, and chocolate. It's a hearty 8% ABV brew that's pretty much as close to a midwinter bonfire as I can feasibly get in my little apartment.

The most prominent element of the stout's bouquet is smoke. There is the promised note of graham cracker here, though. It's lurking behind the smoke with a nice mixture of brown sugar and cinnamon. Purrl gave this seven unrestricted whiffs, so you know that nose on this thing is pretty good.

I'm picking up on a handful of different flavors here. There's that dark, roasty stout quality on the fore. Behind it I get a glimpse of marshmallow creaminess before a wash of chocolate. The beer finishes in a burst of smokey grahaminess.

The stout's mouthfeel is thick with a few small bites of carbonation.

One time, during the fall of my freshman year at Ohio University, I went with some of my newly met friends to a bonfire out in the countryside of Athens. I should have felt out of place, especially since I made other friends and lost contact with many of those people shortly after that night, but I didn't. I strongly remember the cold biting at the backs of my fingers as I held my hands over the open flames. The full moon shining down brightly on the field before us as the woods behind us grew darker and more imposing. I remember on the way back to campus a Gaslight Anthem song playing over the speakers of whomever's car. It was an odd night, but one I remember fondly. It's exactly what I'm thinking about as I sit here swigging from my bottle of S'more Stout.

Short's Brewing's S'more Stout is, like I hypothesized, as close to a bonfire as I can get tonight. That's a good thing. Turns out I need a bonfire feeling every once in a while. It gets an 8.0/10 from me (would you look at that; my rating mirrors the ABV). It's good. You should try it. You can probably find a sixer wherever you find Short's beer near you.

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