Bear Republic — Big Bear Black Stout — 8.1%

Healdsburg’s Bear Republic, best known for their Racer 5 IPA, has come up with the perfect way to toast the onset of fall and the utter collapse of Western civilization. Big Bear Black Stout pours with a beautiful chestnut brown head with a huge aroma of roasted malt and barley.

Black as a giant squid’s asshole, this brew doesn’t show a trace of bitterness—it goes down as smooth as a well-poured Guinness from your local pub. Hints of licorice (black, of course) and a nice caramel finish belie the high-alcohol content.

This may very well be my current favorite domestic stout. I’ll just have to try another to make sure.

Grade: A+

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