In technical terms, a stout is a dark, top-fermented beer with a plethora of variations. The word ‘stout’ goes back to the Egerton Manuscripts of 1677, where it was documented that the first known use of the word stout was to describe ‘a strong beer’, and not a ‘dark beer’.
Before stout was actually a thing, most people were very much obsessed with the Porter style beer. Stout originally emerged as a stronger version of the porter - and was originally called ‘Stout Porter’. It eventually took off as its own style of beer, but with more depth because of the use of roasted barley.
Most people who dive into the world of stout beer usually end up surprised to find out that a stout isn’t as heavy or strong as they thought it would be. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Most great stouts are complex with a low ABV and a touch of roastiness. Drier versions of stout are more appetizing and satisfying, while the sweeter styles of stout are silky and well rounded - and said to be perfect for an evening with a barbeque and drinks.
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