Stouts and porters are two styles that many believe are strictly for that time of year when the needle on the thermometer starts to drop rapidly. I’m here to make a case for these two styles as ultimate year-round brews. (That’s not to say that IPAs, wheat beers or other styles should be left out of your regular rotation.)
Yes, the last few months of the year and beginning of the next are widely recognized as “stout season.” Afterall, February is National Stout Month. Stouts and porters have the reputation as cold weather brews because of their heavy bodies and higher ABV. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing better than a good, strong stout or porter during the autumn or winter seasons. Many breweries release limited versions of these styles for this reason. Some even have multiple releases or variations. Founder’s Breakfast Stout and Terrapin Wake N Bake are just a couple of said beers. Both are coffee oatmeal stouts and both are fantastic.
But when the temperatures start to rise, many beer drinkers switch to IPAs, wheat beers or possibly Belgian saisons. While these lighter styles hold up well in warmer weather, stouts and porters still have their place during the warmer months. A good stout or porter just has that extra special feeling to it. After a long day at work or at a special celebration,
darker beers to provide something extra. Maybe it’s the heavier body of the beer or maybe it’s the delightful coffee or chocolate flavors. Sierra Nevada Stout or Porter, Rogue Mocha Porter or Chocolate Stout, Duck Rabbit Milk Stout, and Barley Mow Maven are all great year round options.
The colder months may be when stouts and porters reign supreme, but they have their rightful place during the rest of the year as well. Whatever the weather, stouts and porters forever.
Patrick Miller, Beer Consultant – Palm Beach Gardens
Follow me on Twitter @abcbeerpatrickm