From the Bottle Collection: Whitstable Oyster Stout

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By Ken Carman

  Without intent, I have collected well over 1,000 beer bottles since the early 70s. When something finally had to be done about the cheap paneling in this old modular, I had a choice. Tear down the walls while, oh, so carefully, replacing the often rotted 1X3s. Or: cover them with… The Bottle Collection.


Rated 62 at Rate Beer and 42 for style.
83 at Beer Advocate.


  I really enjoy Oyster Stouts, and that seems counter intuitive. Really? Oysters in beer? I must admit, being a beer judge, that no longer seems as weird as it used to. You wouldn’t believe some of the weird beers I’ve judged.
 I also think it could be easy for this “adjunct” to take over the recipe, though not as easy as the smoked salmon beer a friend submitted (I found out later it was his) and I judged. As I wrote on the form, “I think the salmon swam away with the recipe.” Continue reading “From the Bottle Collection: Whitstable Oyster Stout”

Getting To Know Oyster Stout, A Beer Made With Oysters

photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/neilconway/">neil conway</a> on Flickr

Chocolate in beer simply makes sense — especially in rich, heavy stouts and porters that already taste something like a liquid brownie. And cherries in a sour beer is a tart and summery idea — a perfect marriage. Even yerba mate, that bitter tea-like herb of Argentina, is a sensible fit in an IPA. But just what was the brewer was thinking who first put oysters into a vat of boiling brew?

Oyster stouts could easily play the part of just another wild concoction stewed up in the modern heights of craft brewing madness. However, they’ve actually got honest, time-tested roots going back more than a century to Victorian England, when many pub-goers ate oysters on the half shell while sipping their favorite beers. Often, these were stouts, whose bittersweet toasty flavors happened to complement the briny, juicy flesh of the mollusks quite well. For a time, in fact, “oyster stout” was simply a term that referred to a pub session at which oysters were slurped between sips of beer.

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