Author Topic: Stout or Porter  (Read 2785 times)

Offline The Professor

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #15 on: November 16, 2009, 08:50:02 PM »
... Every time I see "Stouts must have roasted barley", I think of Sierra Nevada stout, which is all black malt and no roasted.

Ironically that may make the Sierra more like the original Guinness Stout (which itself was just a stronger version of their Porter).
As far as the roasted barley factor that keeps popping up in the Porter/Stout discussions, there is an interesting thing to consider:  some accounts suggest that Guinness may not have even used roasted barley in any of their brews until probably the 1930's.
AL
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Offline stout_fan

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #16 on: November 17, 2009, 07:56:49 AM »
When I'm judging what the brewer calls a stout, I'd better be getting some roast notes in aroma and flavor.
I only expect roast in Robust Porters. But the line is blurred as previously stated.
Pro brewers cross it all the time.

Horses mouth dept:
http://www.bjcp.org/2008styles/style12.php
http://www.bjcp.org/2008styles/style13.php
I'd say something witty down here, but I'm at a bit of a disadvantage in that department.

Offline The Professor

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #17 on: November 17, 2009, 11:48:23 AM »
When I'm judging what the brewer calls a stout, I'd better be getting some roast notes in aroma and flavor.
I only expect roast in Robust Porters. But the line is blurred as previously stated.
Pro brewers cross it all the time.

Horses mouth dept:
http://www.bjcp.org/2008styles/style12.php
http://www.bjcp.org/2008styles/style13.php

Pro brewers SHOULD cross it, because in commercial brewing (big or small) there  is no line..
The "guidelines" are fine for competition judging... in that context they work well enough (even if they are unnecessarily confusing).   Fortunately,  the "guidelines" are still pretty well relegated to the world of homebrew competition for which they were invented.  But I do fear the day that these concepts escape into the real world and attempt to bring sometimes skewed and allegedly definitive "style" definitions to consumers...it would only cause more confusion, not clarity. 

The "guidelines" are in no way relevant to commercial brewers. 
In fact, getting  too  hung up on "style" definitions would be a bad thing for beer in general.

AL
New Brunswick, NJ
[499.6, 101.2] Apparent Rennerian
Homebrewer since July 1971

Offline a10t2

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #18 on: November 17, 2009, 12:06:56 PM »
The "guidelines" are in no way relevant to commercial brewers. 
In fact, getting  too  hung up on "style" definitions would be a bad thing for beer in general.

I agree with the second part, but a common descriptive vocabulary is pretty important. "Blurry line" situations are one thing, but if a brewer advertises an "Amber" and an "IPA", I think it's reasonable to expect the IPA to be hoppier, lighter in color, less malty, probably higher alcohol, etc. Or a dubbel is literally a strong, dark, Belgian ale, in the common sense of all those words, but labeling it as such (BDSA) would be confusing.
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Offline mrbowenz

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #19 on: November 17, 2009, 01:04:31 PM »
When I'm judging what the brewer calls a stout, I'd better be getting some roast notes in aroma and flavor.
I only expect roast in Robust Porters. But the line is blurred as previously stated.
Pro brewers cross it all the time.

Horses mouth dept:
http://www.bjcp.org/2008styles/style12.php
http://www.bjcp.org/2008styles/style13.php

Pro brewers SHOULD cross it, because in commercial brewing (big or small) there  is no line..
The "guidelines" are fine for competition judging... in that context they work well enough (even if they are unnecessarily confusing).   Fortunately,  the "guidelines" are still pretty well relegated to the world of homebrew competition for which they were invented.  But I do fear the day that these concepts escape into the real world and attempt to bring sometimes skewed and allegedly definitive "style" definitions to consumers...it would only cause more confusion, not clarity.  

The "guidelines" are in no way relevant to commercial brewers.  
In fact, getting  too  hung up on "style" definitions would be a bad thing for beer in general.

Thats right on the money , .....although I disagree " guidelines are generally accepted by all of us in the brewing industry ( homebrewers alike ), for without them where would we be ? what could we compare them to ? . As a judge , and a brewer ...I don't always agree with them , I just live with them,...... and as a competitor I conform to them , as a beer lover and artist, I ignore them .  


« Last Edit: November 17, 2009, 01:31:57 PM by mrbowenz »
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Offline The Professor

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #20 on: November 17, 2009, 04:51:23 PM »
...guidelines are generally accepted by all of us in the brewing industry ( homebrewers alike ), for without them where would we be ? what could we compare them to ?

I guess we're straying into a separate topic (I didn't mean to hijack the thread) , but in any case...

You make a good point, and I should clarify that  I believe  very broad  guidelines (perhaps a better term would be "style descriptions") are ok and yes, needed,  to foster a common language.  Something more along the lines of the AHA's original and by far more sensible 'styles' list  published 20+ years ago.
But as you also suggest, brewing is an art.  As such, the only guidelines a brewer needs (outside of specific parameters for amateur competition) are a sense of history, his/her own artistic sense, and his/her own palate. 

So to bring it back 'round closer to original topic... since research indicates that Guinness originally likely did not even use roasted unmalted  barley until well into the 20th century, would the original brew lose points in  a stout competition?  Or, to use a term that many beer lovers have come to loathe, would it be "not to style"?  (even typing the dreaded phrase makes me cringe) ;D
AL
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[499.6, 101.2] Apparent Rennerian
Homebrewer since July 1971

Offline mrbowenz

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #21 on: November 17, 2009, 05:16:19 PM »
Quote
So to bring it back 'round closer to original topic... since research indicates that Guinness originally likely did not even use roasted unmalted  barley until well into the 20th century, would the original brew lose points in  a stout competition?  Or, to use a term that many beer lovers have come to loathe, would it be "not to style"?  (even typing the dreaded phrase makes me cringe)

Yes, it would loose points , because we live in the present day without a deeper regard to history, that is not to say or discredit those who labored to create style guidelines, or update them ,  but becuase like so many things in life and history, things change, styles change, tastes change, and people change . Not to style ( I have dreaded that statement as much as you , even more as a judge ), simply reflects the current , dynamic changes we as brewers and judges need use as a measure. Nothing worse than tasting a great beer , and detracting points for the style drift . Yes we are off topic from the OP , but it's constructive and I find off topic passion stronger than most " on topic " answers . I like your thoughts on this subject  8)
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Offline pashusa

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #22 on: November 17, 2009, 08:15:12 PM »
I see ..it's roasted and brown malts, chocholates and caramels malts. and lay off the roasted barley and black patents for a porter. this is kinda what i was thinking of doing for my chistmas brew but was going to add .5 lbs of rolled oats.  is it then an oatmeal stout or an oatmeal porter.

OK...
roasted and brown malts, chocholates and caramels malts= Porter?
roasted and brown malts, chocholates and caramels malts+roasted barley = porter or stout?
roasted and brown malts, chocholates and caramels malts +roasted barley and black patents=stout?
what if I used;
M/O, roasted malts, chocolate, caramel malts and 5% oatmeal= An oatmeal stout? or Oatmeal porter?
I wasn't even in town that day, I swear.

Offline chumley

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #23 on: November 18, 2009, 10:25:20 AM »
roasted malts, chocolate, caramel malts and 5% oatmeal= oatmeal stout porter

Offline matt

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #24 on: November 18, 2009, 12:47:14 PM »
Check out Ron Pattinson's blog
http://barclayperkins.blogspot.com/
There is a ton of information about porter and stout from a historical perspective. He goes into old brewing logs and deciphers the information. After reading a lot of the posts its pretty clear that our understanding of beer styles and history is pretty limited. I believe he states that stout and porter are the same beer and that, historically, stouts were stronger than proters. Read through the recipes and you will find that a lot of our ideas about what ingredients should make up a certain style of beer are way off. Let's just say that the english brewers used a lot of sugar and coloring.

Offline mrbowenz

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #25 on: November 18, 2009, 01:21:12 PM »
Check out Ron Pattinson's blog
http://barclayperkins.blogspot.com/
After reading a lot of the posts its pretty clear that our understanding of beer styles and history is pretty limited.

Hey , not everyone's understanding of beer history is limited , I mentioned this on the first page , and I am one of Ron's faithful flock  :-*
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Offline pashusa

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #26 on: November 18, 2009, 09:57:56 PM »
I'll just call it an oatmeal chocolate chip cookie.
I wasn't even in town that day, I swear.

Offline k4df4l

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #27 on: November 19, 2009, 04:20:59 AM »

Offline matt

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Re: Stout or Porter
« Reply #28 on: November 19, 2009, 08:10:33 AM »
In addition to Ron's blog, this is a good read on the topic:

http://zythophile.wordpress.com/2009/03/19/so-what-is-the-difference-between-porter-and-stout/


Thanks for the link. Anothr great site for debunking some of the beer myths that are out there.