Despite being midday, it's cold, wet and dark outside so it made sense to have something cold, wet and dark inside: Black Bishop stout brewed by Durham Brewery, one of my local breweries.
It's bottle conditioned and the label warns of sediment, so I poured carefully but left a good 2cm in the bottom of the bottle as I could see the dusty sediment approaching the bottle neck. Black Bishop is jet black with only a hint of russet brown when held to the light at a certain angle. The head is reasonably tight and dark beige coloured and shows no sign of dispersing, leaving thick lacing as you would expect from a good stout.
Delicious aromas of dark chocolate and roasted coffee make this a stout that I couldn't wait to experience. Hurrah - I was certainly not disappointed. The bitter mix of chocolate and coffee has an added smokiness that made this stout stand out from the rest. I think smoky flavours are difficult to judge: too much and it tastes like an ash tray and too little might as well not be there at all. Durham Brewery have got it just right like Goldilocks.
The perfect amount of carbonation results in a full bodied stout that, although lighter and fizzier than its most famous cousin, makes me happily declare that Ale Be Seeing You Again!
Brewed by The Durham Brewery, County Durham