20. Ipswich Ale Brewery Oatmeal Stout
City: Ipswich, MA
The verdict: This brew from the underrated Ipswich struck us as a bit unusual for an oatmeal stout, and not quite as one might expect for the substyle. It’s not so creamy as you often get from the oat addition, but it does have the full body. Notably bitter, it’s unexpectedly hop-forward on the nose, which couples with the bitterness to create something closer to “black IPA lite” than expected. The dark side of the flavor palette comes through strongly, however, with lots of coffee and burnt, ashy roast. Dry and bitter, with big flavor and an assertive presence, it reminds us more of “American stout” than classic, British-inspired oatmeal stout, but it’s a very tasty and characterful beer.
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