Hoggleys brewery is pretty much next door to where my sister lives down south. I say pretty much next door, in the same neck of the woods. You don't get this beer round Lancashire which is a shame because everything I've tried from there has been excellent. This is the first time I've had the Solstice Stout and I had to blog about it because even though I drink a lot of stouts and enjoy them hugely this particular stout needs to become more widespread so this is me doing my bit to spread the word.
First things first, the colour, pretty standard for a stout in that it's very dark. Almost black but the deep browns can be spotted round the edges so no surprises there. The smell had the distinctive metallic notes you often get from traditional stout, this one had rich coppery tones. The first sip was outstanding, chocolaty flavours are very common in stouts but not like this. It was as near to thick rich chocolate mousse as you can get without eating chocolate mousse, with the added bonus of being beer and bringing with it all the lovely beery tastes we all know and love! It really is quite amazing how much this tastes like a choc pudding. There is a slight bitterness which first made me think it could be described as having dark chocolate flavours but this bitterness turned into the slight coffee like aftertaste which is again typical of beers of its type. This is a very smooth and thick beer which like any traditional stout has a good fizz on it, being bottle conditioned it had plenty of bits in the bottle which of course made there way into my glass. These chewy bits are full of fantastic flavours and although yes quite fattening are full of nutrition. Hopefully Hoggleys will spread across Britain and become available in most beer shops but until then you'll have to take my word for it that this one is fantastic.