Brewmeister Monday: Dogfish Head Chicory Stout.

Posted on January 17, 2011


Here’s a new one that looks promising.  At least it had better be good, seeing as though this six-pack puts a dent your pocket for over $16.00!  That comes to nearly $3.00 per 12oz bottle, yikes!  It has a relatively low alcohol content for a stout, coming in at 5.2% alcohol by volume.  Who knows, though, this could be the best stout in the world.

The description on the bottle reads:

ABOUT THIS STOUT.  A rich, dark brew smoothed out with a touch of roasted chicory and organic Mexican coffee.  Goodness beneath a bone white head.

The bottle has a nice picture of a Dogfish on it, which I like since I have vivid memories of dissecting a dogfish in my Zoology class.  They’re very closely related to sharks.  Hopefully it doesn’t smell like a dogfish, the smell of which is also a vivid memory.  Well, here it goes, see you on the other side.

Opacity: 4.3. What a pleasant surprise.  The beer is very dark, only a smidgen of faint brown light comes through when held to a light.  I say it’s surprising because of the lower-end alcohol content, which is usually correlated with lighter stouts and porters.

Color: Dark brown when held to a light, black when viewed sitting on the table.

Head:  3.9. WARNING:  Ephemeral Head Syndrome (EHS)!!  When poured, the brew looked promising.  The head was a lovely dark tan color, which is contrary to the description on the label claiming that its head is “bone white,” which would have been disappointing.  However, the great looking head quickly bubbled away, leaving foam only on the rim, which resembles an atoll reef.  See the similarity below.

Atoll reef

Atoll head

Aroma:  3.8. A hint of coffee.  Chicory is not present in aroma, which was disappointing.  Overall, I was not impressed by the aroma of this stout.  Nothing really stood out to define this beer.

Flavor:  3.9. Good taste, though it does not match the description in the least.  I tasted only a trace of coffee, and no chicory whatsoever.  There is no bitter taste, which is good, but there really isn’t ANY taste that really stands out.  It’s taste is much like its aroma.  There’s an initial coffee taste, but it tapers off sharply into nothing.  Tapering off into nothing is certainly better than a lingering bitterness.  Not thoroughly impressed.

Mouthfeel:  3.9. A bit more carbonated than I like.  This is to be expected with EHS.

Finish:  4.0. The stout finishes well, because it certainly doesn’t finish poorly.  There are many ways for the finish to be bad, and beers that are able to curtail undesirable tastes should be applauded.  I would have liked a more tasty finish–one that I can take with me for the next minute or so.

Overall:  3.97. Opacity saved this beer from a lower rating.  While generally a good indicator of beer quality, this beer is deceiving.  The more I sipped it, the more I disliked it.  It’s just “meh.”

I frankly wouldn’t bother with this stout.  It’s certainly not worth the $16.00 I spent on the 6-pack.  There are many other stouts for far less money that are much higher quality than Dogfish Head Chicory Stout.  I really can’t see how they justify the price they put on this beer.  It’s not even an import, it’s brewed in Delaware!  I still have five more of these left to get me through the week.  It won’t be torture or anything, but I certainly won’t be itching to get home to them.

Stay away from this stout, it’s a rip-off.

Posted in: Brews