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100 STEPS STOUT, ROYAL CITY BREWING

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If you’re like me, these first cold blasts of winter get you thinking about hibernating indoors, and stalking the fridge for darker, more roasted-tasting beers.

One of the better local stouts on offer out there is Royal City Brewing’s 100 Steps Stout, a year-round brew that’s especially appealing this time of year as the snow begins to fly.

Fans of inky, rich Imperial stouts might find this stout too tame, but for me, it’s the right balance of roasted coffee and dark chocolate without losing its sessionable drinkability. Coming in at 5.2 ABV and 20 IBUs, it’s a good find on a cold winter’s night.

100 Steps is a dry, traditional Irish stout modelled after Guinness’s iconic brew, but a lot fresher because it’s brewed in town. We picked up a growler direct from the brewery, and weren’t disappointed.

The beer pours with a frothy brown head, and has good malt body, and feels slightly creamy, without being too sweet or over-carbonated.

What the brewery says:

“This beer starts off with a dry roasted taste, akin to coffee or dark chocolate. It then follows with a hint of malt sweetness immediately after. This then yields to more dark chocolate notes and slight herbal finish from the hops.”