Last week, I reviewed a luscious beer made by a friend of mine when he owned a microbrewery in the Ottawa area. I enjoyed sharing my impressions of his Imperial Stout with you, but there was just one small problem.
It's no longer available in stores.
What was the point in enticing you to a beer that you won't be able to get your hands on?
Well, this time I'm going to review a beer that is currently available at the LCBO; whether you want to get it after this review is entirely up to you, but at least you'll have that option.
With Hallowe'en just behind us, it's no surprise that the label of this beer caught my attention. Two cat-like eyes peering through blackness. An eerie green glow on the lower half of the label. And its name: Ghosttown Stout.
Brewed by Brasseur de Montréal, which started in 2008 by Denise Mérineau and Marc-André Gauvreau in the Griffintown district of Montréal—a name that is carried on another of their labels—Ghosttown Stout is an absinth-flavoured beer with a unique flavour. Here are my tasting notes:
- Reddish-brown in colour, almost like root beer, with a café-au-lait head.
- The nose held hints of mint and chocolate, almost like an After Eight mint; a sweetness that almost seemed like root beer.
- On the palate, black licorice and espresso, with strong alcohol overtones.
- A long, strong finish of grassy herbs.
At 6.6% alcohol, this stout packs a punch; and even though Perry's beer was headier at 9%, Ghosttown tasted stronger because the flavour of alcohol was more prevalent. Though I bought two 341ml bottles, I decided that one bottle was enough for a sitting.
As much as I like stout, I'm not sure how I feel about one that is absinth-flavoured. I've never had absinth before, so I'm at a disadvantage in describing it. Perhaps that's the black licorice that I tasted and the strong alcohol finish. Unfortunately, I'm neither a fan of black licorice nor of strong alcohol (whisky excepted). So this wasn't my favourite stout.
It was interesting, none the less, and it does make me curious to try other beers by these brewers. If you like stout and want to try something different, give it a try, but buy one to start off. At $2.95 a bottle, it's certainly worth a shot.