13 June 2007

It's all about paint

As a seasoned connoisseur, I know that the way to tell a really good beer from the dross is to check for a painted-on label rather than one simply glued to the glass. US brewer Rogue's big painted bottles indicate that they make very fine produce indeed.

Dead Guy Ale is a seriously heavy, sticky red-gold brew with touches of spice in amongst the caramel and toffee. There's a certain hollowness to it which I feel would have been best filled with more hops. But what do I know? It won't be going on my regular rotation (Inasmuch as I have one).

Similarly dense is Rogue Chocolate Stout, deep black with a head like espresso crema. The chocolate is laid on thick, with only the faintest vestige of a dry stout left in the background. The end result is a wonderfully smooth, rich beer, not at all cloying and with a satisfyingly silky mouthfeel. It's one for taking big gulps of and, with the 65cl bottle, you can do it again and again.

Actually, now that I think of it, Doreleï has a painted-on label and isn't great. So much for my grand theory...


  1. I've had a couple from Rogue's extensive range but not either of those, and while worth trying once I don't go out of my way to track them down. Other people seem to disagree when it comes to the Imperial Stout
    The Smoke Ale is exactly that, and suffers from it, just too overpowering. Smokey whisky I can have, but not beer

  2. I like smoked beers. I'll be looking out for that one. Thanks.

  3. Anonymous5:11 p.m.

    rolling rock...


    both have painted on labels!

    Rogue's stuff never struck me as particularly great - Sainsbury's stocked it throughout the UK for a while a couple of years back but it didn't sell.

  4. They do? I'll have to take your word for it...

  5. Bailey9:51 a.m.

    Painted on labels are a pain if you're a homebrewer wanting to reuse the bottles, too. Always wanted to try the Rogue Imperial Stout, but have never got round to it.

  6. I wasn't aware branding was such an issue for homebrewers ;)

  7. Branding is definitely an issue for homebrewers. I can't believe you just cyber-winked. Rogue's Dead Guy is great, but I prefer Rogue's Shakespeare Stout to their Chocolate Stout. The Chocolate stout is toooo chocolatey for my tastes.

    And I was under a similar label impression, but "anonymous" is totally right about Rolling Rock and Corona. So much for THAT theory.

  8. Never met a beer that was too chocolatey. Porterhouse Chocolate Truffle Stout is chocolatier than Rogue or Young's, IMO, and it's gaww-jus. Mrs. Beer Nut is mad about Floris Chocolat, but it's too sweet for me.

    And I am the cyber-Anne-Robinson. Goodnight ;)