Verbatim: Invercargill Brewery ‘Pitch Black’ Stout. Again from the hand pumps at Old Malty, and in many ways one step further down Black Beer Boulevard from the aforementioned (and aforedrunken) Tuatara Porter. Bigger, darker, and stouty, basically. But still (I think) fairly accessible. Something of a favourite for a few of my female friends. But that might just indicate my peculiar taste in female friends. Who knows?
Afterthoughts, November 2010: Here’s a very-minor example of a common rebellion, with me; I’ll have absolutely no part of this frequent talk of what might be a ‘girly beer’. I just know too many exceptions in both directions (girls who drink “non-girly” beer, and non-girls who drink “girly” beer) and am too-easily bored by blokey sexist blahblahblah to tolerate it much.
Also, the whole question of what divides ‘stout’ from ‘porter’ is a controversial one, despite my breezy invocation of a commonly-understood difference, above. I’ve always had it in my head that stouts will tend to be drier and coffee-ish-er, while porters will tend towards the sweeter and chocolatey-er end of the spectrum. Apparently, though — just like all other putative distinctions — that’s not really very historical of me. Martyn Cornell has written a pretty damn definitive account entitled ‘So what IS the difference between porter and stout?’, which — spoiler alert — basically concludes: there isn’t one.
Beer history is tricky like that. And I’m just going to keep on using my non-historical terms anyway. I’m stubborn like that.