Another customer favorite returns. Our Milk Stout is back on tap, and we are serving casks of it from our beer engine while supplies last. The question those unfamiliar with the style ask most is “Milk Stout? Does it actually have milk in it?” Well, yes and no.
During the 19th century, milder sweeter stouts were popular in England, but the sweetness would fade as these beers aged. Brewers were looking for some way around this problem. They wanted an unfermentable sugar that would remain in the beer, providing body to lower alcohol beers as well as a little sweetness. They hit on lactose, sugar derived from milk.
In the early 20th century, Mackeson introduced the first “Milk Stout.” The style grew in popularity through the 50s. In contrast to Irish or “dry” stouts, milk stouts were smoother and milder, with the bitterness of roasted malt counterbalanced by a slight sweetness and a creamy texture.
After WWII, the style grew in popularity but quickly started to fade. According to English beer expert Martyn Cornell, by the 1960s, milk stout was becoming woefully unfashionable and was associated almost entirely “with elderly working class women.” Leave it to the less-class-conscious Yanks behind the American craft beer movement to resurrect this neglected style.
Our version is just 4.4% alcohol but packed with flavor. This stout has a deep, earthy, slightly smoky roast character and a lush silky mouth feel. There’s a hint of sweetness but it’s not cloying. Lactose accounts for about five percent of the total mash, which is on the low side for this style.
Like all Civil Life beers, it’s balanced and delicious. Head down to your local for a pint tonight. Be sure to try it on cask while we have it.
Perhaps you want to read a bit more about our Milk Stout. Click me!
The Civil Blog has returned. It is predominantly authored by Civil Life Barman, Dr. Patrick Hurley, who can be found tending to our bar patrons on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. He is also responsible for tending to our draft lines, which is recognized as one of our most important tasks. Special guest writers will appear from time to time. We hope reading this blog will give you much insight about the Civil Life and most importantly help you understand a bit more about all of us that work here and the beers we put our hearts into.