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General Category => Commercial Beer Reviews => Topic started by: glitterbug on November 15, 2010, 05:19:47 PM

Title: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: glitterbug on November 15, 2010, 05:19:47 PM
Got a 4 pack of this on Friday. Apparently, this beer has not been available in the American market for 80 years. Reminds me of an RIS, nice roasted characters at 7.5% abv.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: hermsman on November 15, 2010, 05:27:33 PM
I read in the latest issue of Zymurgy that they were releasing this to the US. I last had it at the brewery's Public House in Dublin. It is excellent and by far my favorite stout. Can't wait to find it here and try it out!
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: tschmidlin on November 15, 2010, 06:03:58 PM
I had some a few weeks back, I really like it.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: brew_in_stl on November 15, 2010, 06:38:32 PM
Picked up a four pack a couple weeks ago myself...

I was definitely not disappointed with this beer!  It reminded me of Guinness on steroids, if you will.  It has a hint of that typical Guinness flavor, but was bigger, roastier, and a little more hoppy (IIRC).  Definitely hope it sticks around!

Of course, at 7.5%ABV, I am starting to wonder what it would be like after 6 months aging...
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: JKL on November 16, 2010, 04:39:45 PM
I was fortunate enough to drink a few of these in Jamaica 6 years ago only to realize that it ruined me for most lower abv stouts.  I honestly have had only a couple of regular Guinness since.  Needless to say I was stoked to find out they were releasing it here in the States.  The article I read said it was going to hit in October so I figured it would 2011 before it got here to the beer wasteland.  To my surprised my local store had it the 1st week of Oct.
-J.K.L. 
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: bluesman on November 16, 2010, 04:50:47 PM
I'll have to put this one on my list. Thanks for the heads up.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: brew_in_stl on November 16, 2010, 06:56:29 PM
To add just a little more, I drank the last of the 4-pack last night.

I noticed a little of the "tropical" side of it while sipping it last night...of course, this was after a glass of my American Stout so that may have jacked up my sense of taste a little.  Still a darn good beer, which I thought was even more intriguing after noticing that tropical aspect.

When I say tropical, I mean a perceived sweetness, sort of.  It was not like a milk stout, but it had a richness to it that was most enjoyable.  Definitely picking up some more of this the next time I hit the beer shop!
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: morticaixavier on November 16, 2010, 07:00:36 PM
To add just a little more, I drank the last of the 4-pack last night.

I noticed a little of the "tropical" side of it while sipping it last night...of course, this was after a glass of my American Stout so that may have jacked up my sense of taste a little.  Still a darn good beer, which I thought was even more intriguing after noticing that tropical aspect.

When I say tropical, I mean a perceived sweetness, sort of.  It was not like a milk stout, but it had a richness to it that was most enjoyable.  Definitely picking up some more of this the next time I hit the beer shop!

Don't they use sorghum in this recipe? I thought I read that somewhere about the foreign extra stout. that might account for the perceived sweetness as not all the sugars in molasses are fermentable
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: brew_in_stl on November 16, 2010, 07:02:06 PM
Hadn't read that, but I am sure it is possible.  Regardless...TASTY!  ;D
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: alikocho on November 16, 2010, 07:24:02 PM
Apparently, this beer has not been available in the American market for 80 years.

Really?!? I bought some in upstate New York last winter....
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: tschmidlin on November 16, 2010, 08:19:44 PM
Don't they use sorghum in this recipe? I thought I read that somewhere about the foreign extra stout. that might account for the perceived sweetness as not all the sugars in molasses are fermentable
I'm confused - they use sorghum and molasses?  Because it reads to me like you're saying sorghum is molasses . . . except it's not.  :-\
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: roguejim on November 16, 2010, 08:39:40 PM
Apparently, this beer has not been available in the American market for 80 years.

Really?!? I bought some in upstate New York last winter....


It's always been in the markets here in southern Oregon.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: blatz on November 16, 2010, 08:44:19 PM
Apparently, this beer has not been available in the American market for 80 years.

Really?!? I bought some in upstate New York last winter....


It's always been in the markets here in southern Oregon.

I think you guys are thinking of Guinness Extra Stout and not the Guinness Foreign Extra Stout, which is different - 4pks vs. 6pks, 11.2oz bottles vs. 12oz, and about 3% abv or so.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: jeffy on November 16, 2010, 09:08:06 PM
Apparently, this beer has not been available in the American market for 80 years.

Really?!? I bought some in upstate New York last winter....


It's always been in the markets here in southern Oregon.

I think you guys are thinking of Guinness Extra Stout and not the Guinness Foreign Extra Stout, which is different - 4pks vs. 6pks, 11.2oz bottles vs. 12oz, and about 3% abv or so.
Actually there are two versions of this beer.  The U.S. version came in at about 6.5% and Foreign Extra at 7.5%.  The stronger one has never been available in the U.S. as far as I know.  I have a bottle from the Cayman Islands that says "Guinness is good for you" right on the label.  You won't see that in the states. 
The draught Guinness in the 11.2 ounce bottles with the widget is an entirely different animal.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: blatz on November 16, 2010, 09:22:06 PM
Apparently, this beer has not been available in the American market for 80 years.

Really?!? I bought some in upstate New York last winter....


It's always been in the markets here in southern Oregon.

I think you guys are thinking of Guinness Extra Stout and not the Guinness Foreign Extra Stout, which is different - 4pks vs. 6pks, 11.2oz bottles vs. 12oz, and about 3% abv or so.
Actually there are two versions of this beer.  The U.S. version came in at about 6.5% and Foreign Extra at 7.5%.  The stronger one has never been available in the U.S. as far as I know.  I have a bottle from the Cayman Islands that says "Guinness is good for you" right on the label.  You won't see that in the states.  
The draught Guinness in the 11.2 ounce bottles with the widget is an entirely different animal.

sorry Jeffy - you're wrong  ;) :D.  what we are talking about is the one that is 7.5% that just became available in the US - I bought some last week at Total Wine.  

I'd be surprised that we have it before Tampa, so its probably out there if you want it.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: bluesman on November 16, 2010, 09:26:57 PM
For inquiring minds.

Guinness Foreign Extra Stout

(http://www.finewines.ie/product_images/finewines.ie/109654_L.jpg)

Guinness Extra Stout

(http://www.gotbeer.com/content/user_1/4456.jpg)
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: jeffy on November 16, 2010, 09:33:00 PM
Apparently, this beer has not been available in the American market for 80 years.

Really?!? I bought some in upstate New York last winter....


It's always been in the markets here in southern Oregon.

I think you guys are thinking of Guinness Extra Stout and not the Guinness Foreign Extra Stout, which is different - 4pks vs. 6pks, 11.2oz bottles vs. 12oz, and about 3% abv or so.
Actually there are two versions of this beer.  The U.S. version came in at about 6.5% and Foreign Extra at 7.5%.  The stronger one has never been available in the U.S. as far as I know.  I have a bottle from the Cayman Islands that says "Guinness is good for you" right on the label.  You won't see that in the states.  
The draught Guinness in the 11.2 ounce bottles with the widget is an entirely different animal.

sorry Jeffy - you're wrong  ;) :D.  what we are talking about is the one that is 7.5% that just became available in the US - I bought some last week at Total Wine.  

I'd be surprised that we have it before Tampa, so its probably out there if you want it.
No, I'm actually not wrong.  There are two slightly different versions.  The 6.5% has been available here for a long time, but not the 7.5%.  I'll have to pick some up.  I'll also check to see if the slightly less strong version is still at the store.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: blatz on November 16, 2010, 09:37:54 PM
No, I'm actually not wrong.  There are two slightly different versions.  The 6.5% has been available here for a long time, but not the 7.5%.  I'll have to pick some up.  I'll also check to see if the slightly less strong version is still at the store.

both versions are both still available.  that's what I'm saying - you're wrong in saying that its not available in the States - it was just released in the states (which is what generated this thread and hence why I said it in my best "McLaughlin Group" w/ smiley statement since an article referenced the new release- damn interwebs). 

there's now 3 versions of packaged Guinness available on the market - Draught w/ widget, Extra Stout, and Foreign Extra Stout - (4 if cans are still out there)?
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: morticaixavier on November 16, 2010, 09:43:45 PM
Don't they use sorghum in this recipe? I thought I read that somewhere about the foreign extra stout. that might account for the perceived sweetness as not all the sugars in molasses are fermentable
I'm confused - they use sorghum and molasses?  Because it reads to me like you're saying sorghum is molasses . . . except it's not.  :-\

sorry to be unclear. I was refering to sorghum which is sometimes refered to as molasses. When you make sugar from sugar cane you get molasses left over but if you back sorghum syrup by pressing the sorghum stalks it is often refered to interchangably. I meant sorghum.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: jeffy on November 16, 2010, 09:54:55 PM
No, I'm actually not wrong.  There are two slightly different versions.  The 6.5% has been available here for a long time, but not the 7.5%.  I'll have to pick some up.  I'll also check to see if the slightly less strong version is still at the store.

both versions are both still available.  that's what I'm saying - you're wrong in saying that its not available in the States - it was just released in the states (which is what generated this thread and hence why I said it in my best "McLaughlin Group" w/ smiley statement since an article referenced the new release- damn interwebs). 

there's now 3 versions of packaged Guinness available on the market - Draught w/ widget, Extra Stout, and Foreign Extra Stout - (4 if cans are still out there)?
I thought you were saying that there was only the one strong Guinness in the heavier, 12 ounce bottles, so I went to my local store and bought a six-pack of imported Guinness Extra Stout.  This one was brewed in Canada and doesn't have the alc% on the bottle, but as I recall it's about 6.5%. It's been on the shelf of that store for a long, long time.  I'll have to go look for the newly released Foreign Extra at a real beer store.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: markaberrant on November 16, 2010, 10:00:04 PM
I was fortunate enough to drink a few of these in Jamaica 6 years ago only to realize that it ruined me for most lower abv stouts.  I honestly have had only a couple of regular Guinness since.  Needless to say I was stoked to find out they were releasing it here in the States.  The article I read said it was going to hit in October so I figured it would 2011 before it got here to the beer wasteland.  To my surprised my local store had it the 1st week of Oct.
-J.K.L. 

As of winter 06/07, the Guinness Foreign Extra Stout sold in jamaica is only 6.5% and is made locally by Desnoes and Geddes.  My sister brought some of these back for me that winter, and they were not good at all.  Not sure if this is still the case today or not.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: markaberrant on November 16, 2010, 10:02:15 PM
I thought you were saying that there was only the one strong Guinness in the heavier, 12 ounce bottles, so I went to my local store and bought a six-pack of imported Guinness Extra Stout.  This one was brewed in Canada and doesn't have the alc% on the bottle, but as I recall it's about 6.5%. It's been on the shelf of that store for a long, long time.  I'll have to go look for the newly released Foreign Extra at a real beer store.

And for those that are able to keep up with the confusion, here is some more:

- The Extra Stout sold in the US is brewed by Moosehead in Canada
- The Extra Stout sold in Canada is brewed by Labatt (AB Inbev), is 5%abv, and tastes like absolute garbage.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: MDixon on November 16, 2010, 10:38:52 PM
Let's make it far more confusing. There are various versions of FES including one sold in Belgium (perhaps other places as well) named Special Export.

I haven't looked at the bottles I picked up last night to investigate where the FES currently being sold which is 7.5% is made.

The one time I had a bottle of FES previously it was made in Barbados by Banks Barbados Brewery, Ltd. I cannot find my notes on Special Export, but IIRC it was 8%.

Wanna get even more confusing, take a look at the entry in Wikipedia
Quote
Guinness Foreign Extra Stout: 7.5% ABV version sold in Europe, Africa, the Caribbean, Asia, and the United States. The basis is an unfermented but hopped Guinness wort extract shipped from Dublin, which is added to local ingredients and brewed locally. The strength can vary, for example, it is sold at 5% ABV in China, 6.5% ABV in Jamaica and East Africa, 7.5% in the United States, and 8% ABV in Singapore. In Nigeria a proportion of sorghum is used. Foreign Extra Stout is blended with a small amount of intentionally soured beer.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: tschmidlin on November 16, 2010, 10:53:05 PM
Don't they use sorghum in this recipe? I thought I read that somewhere about the foreign extra stout. that might account for the perceived sweetness as not all the sugars in molasses are fermentable
I'm confused - they use sorghum and molasses?  Because it reads to me like you're saying sorghum is molasses . . . except it's not.  :-\

sorry to be unclear. I was refering to sorghum which is sometimes refered to as molasses. When you make sugar from sugar cane you get molasses left over but if you back sorghum syrup by pressing the sorghum stalks it is often refered to interchangably. I meant sorghum.
Huh.  I had no idea there was such a thing as "sweet surghum" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sweet_sorghum), which is what wikipedia says sorghum molasses is made out of.  I thought you were talking about the grass sorghum (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sorghum), which is used to make gluten free beers.  I guess the two are related.  Interesting.  And according to wikipedia the "sweet sorghum syrup" used to make gluten-free beers comes from the grain, not the sweet sorghum (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gluten_free_beer#Home_brewing).

At least that's not confusing at all.   :-\ ;D

Thanks, I learned something. :)
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: tschmidlin on November 16, 2010, 11:01:55 PM
Wanna get even more confusing, take a look at the entry in Wikipedia
Quote
Guinness Foreign Extra Stout: 7.5% ABV version sold in Europe, Africa, the Caribbean, Asia, and the United States. The basis is an unfermented but hopped Guinness wort extract shipped from Dublin, which is added to local ingredients and brewed locally. The strength can vary, for example, it is sold at 5% ABV in China, 6.5% ABV in Jamaica and East Africa, 7.5% in the United States, and 8% ABV in Singapore. In Nigeria a proportion of sorghum is used. Foreign Extra Stout is blended with a small amount of intentionally soured beer.
Thanks for this Mike.  A friend of mine from Singapore brought me one several years ago, but I couldn't remember the ABV.  I thought it was 8-9%, but couldn't reconcile that with the 7.5% for the FES.  Now it's all clear . . . as Guinness ;)
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: brew_in_stl on November 17, 2010, 02:39:22 PM
[KeanuReevesvoice]I'm sorry...what?[/KeanuReevesvoice]

Wow, that got confusing fast!  So, the FES that I drank is the stuff Guinness JUST released in October to the United States.  It was previously NOT avialable in the United States.  Since I am not in Jamaica, Canada, Singapore, Nigeria...wherever, I don't know what the heck they have!  ;D

I just know that the FES that is now available for me to enjoy here in the U.S. of A. is a tasty beer, regardless of it's origin.  I do know, however, that it is NOT the "old" Extra Stout (still a favorite and a must for most of my chili creations) and is definitely not Guinness Draught.

Okay...that's all I have.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: hermsman on November 17, 2010, 06:27:51 PM
I had to try one last night. It is tastey, roasty and hoppy. The version sold here is the FES is from Guinness in Ireland. Yap, St James Gate,  Dublin Ireland. Not Labatt, AB, Moosehead etc. Its the REAL deal! 7.5% alc. of dark delicious goodness.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: JKL on November 17, 2010, 06:58:56 PM
I had to try one last night. It is tastey, roasty and hoppy. The version sold here is the FES is from Guinness in Ireland. Yap, St James Gate,  Dublin Ireland. Not Labatt, AB, Moosehead etc. Its the REAL deal! 7.5% alc. of dark delicious goodness.
Makes me want to go get another 4-pack tonight!
-J.K.L.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: The Professor on November 17, 2010, 07:18:29 PM
I had to try one last night. It is tastey, roasty and hoppy. The version sold here is the FES is from Guinness in Ireland. Yap, St James Gate,  Dublin Ireland. Not Labatt, AB, Moosehead etc. Its the REAL deal! 7.5% alc. of dark delicious goodness.
Makes me want to go get another 4-pack tonight!
-J.K.L.


I intend to do the same.  I've had quite a few of these in the last couple weeks and it will be on my very (very) short list of commercial beers I still buy occasionally. 
I've always liked Guinness (even if it has dumbed down over the 40 years that have passed since I first tasted it), but this iteration of the  FES is hands down my favorite of any stout I've ever had. Considering the widespread 'dissing'  that beer geeks heap upon  both Draught Guinness and the 'brewed under license' bottled version, it seems to me that Diageo has made a smart move in bringing the FES to market in the states.
I'll say it again...this is the real Guinness.  And still the benchmark for dry stout, as far as I'm concerned.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: markaberrant on November 17, 2010, 11:17:54 PM
Yeah, I was pretty stoked to see the FES ad in the latest Zymurgy, I have always wanted to try the real deal.  Unfortunately, it aint available in Canada.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: MDixon on November 19, 2010, 12:45:29 AM
K- so I'm tipping one of these tonight and IIRC it is less estery than the one I had from Barbados. Quite hoppy and quite roasty and a smidge of diacetyl, but not at a level which detracts. The guidelines currently say low to none for aroma and very low to none for flavor, but this is just a bit above what I would consider low...FWIW the Special Export had quite a notable level of diacetyl when I had it...
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: The Professor on November 19, 2010, 02:23:48 AM
K- so I'm tipping one of these tonight and IIRC it is less estery than the one I had from Barbados. Quite hoppy and quite roasty and a smidge of diacetyl, but not at a level which detracts. The guidelines currently say low to none for aroma and very low to none for flavor, but this is just a bit above what I would consider low...FWIW the Special Export had quite a notable level of diacetyl when I had it...

Good observations for sure,  except that the 'guidelines' just don't apply here. 
They are only for homebrew competition judging and have no relevance whatsoever  when it comes to commercial beer.

This can't be stressed enough.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: punatic on November 19, 2010, 06:26:57 AM
I have a tradition of humping a bottle of Guiness Extra Stout with me when I hike out to photograph the active lava flows of Kilauea.  I often spend the night out there - just me, my cameras and Pele.  Ain't nothin better than relaxing in front of a glowing 2000 degree F flow of molten earth while sippin on a fine stout!  I find the aroma of volcanic gases and the flavor of roasted barley to be complimentary.

After reading the reviews of Guinness Foreign Extra Stout in this thread, I'm really looking forward to humping some out to the flows when it becomes available here on Hawaii Island!

btw - having more than one bottle is asking for trouble - Pele can be pretty unforgiving of sloppiness...
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: MDixon on November 19, 2010, 11:45:27 AM
Professor - it's not about trying to apply the guidelines to pidgeonhole a commercial beer, it IS about eventually UPDATING the guidelines to reflect the beer for which they were developed. Without someone noting and pointing out particular commercial examples and attributes there would never be change. Same goes for trends at homebrewing competition, if people are brewing and entering Black IPAs it is certainly worth discussing adding the style when the guidelines are revised. I remember suggesting Freeminer Deep Shaft to be added to the FES style the last time the guidelines were updated, I believe it was already in the works, but IMO the feedback helped those working on the guidelines to enact the change.

Let's take the wayback machine to the 1999 guidelines...how does the diacetyl level appear...
http://www.bjcp.org/styleguide16.php
Aroma - low to none
Flavor  - medium to none
Sounds about right to me when describing the Guinness FES which is now distributed in the US based on the 4 pack of beers I purchased.

Anything else ya wanna stress about Professor ;D
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: euge on December 03, 2010, 10:34:56 PM
I just picked up a 4pack and really really like it. I'd pick this over traditional Guinness. In fact I'd like to brew something similar also.

Expensive. But, the sourish roasty hoppy bitterness makes it all worth while.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: punatic on December 03, 2010, 10:36:12 PM
I just picked up a 4pack and really really like it. I'd pick this over traditional Guinness. In fact I'd like to brew something similar also.

Expensive. But, the sourish roasty hoppy bitterness makes it all worth while.

The sour part is the secret.
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: 1vertical on December 04, 2010, 07:24:22 PM
When I want a Guinness, this is the one I seek out....the others....meh
Title: Re: Guinness Foreign Extra Stout
Post by: toddhert on December 24, 2010, 04:29:42 AM
I like regular Guinness on draft. I like American stouts too. This tastes like any brand of American stout with a drop of Guinness in it. It tastes good, but I was really disappointed. I'd rather have a locally brewed stout or a regular Guinness draft.