My mother-in-law bought me my first Young’s Double Chocolate Stout. In fact, that was my first stout that wasn’t called Guinness. It was my “gateway stout,” if you will. Since then it has been downhill. Now I have a beer fridge full of stouts. Well, there are some IPA and Belgian’s in there too, but you get the idea.
Young’s Double Chocolate Stout and Samuel Smith’s Organic Chocolate Stout have seemingly been around forever and, as far as I am concerned, are the baseline for all Chocolate Stouts. Neither would rank as my favorite, but I would call them both solid stouts and great bargains. It’s hard to beat a good chocolate stout in the $5.00 price range and that’s right where a 500ml bottle of Young’s is.
Young’s has gone through a recent rebranding. This bottle shows off the new look.
Young’s Double Chocolate Stout
Style: Sweet Stout
Availability: Year Round
MSRP: $4.79 500ml bottle
Brewer: Charles Wells Ltd. – Bedford, UK
Appearance: As one might expect from a stout, Young’s Double Chocolate Stout is deep brown in color. It is so dark that it’s almost black. The pour produced a one-inch cream-colored head. The head didn’t hang around too long and it ultimately became a few smatterings of bubbles here and there.
Nose: Malty notes of chocolate, coffee and a dirty earthiness were present.
Flavor: The name Double Chocolate Stout tells me that I’m going to taste a lot of chocolate. The name is a bit misleading. My guess is that the “double” in the name is referring to the fact that dark chocolate and chocolate essence (whatever that is) are used in the brewing process and not that the beer has double chocolate flavor. For what it’s worth, Chocolate malts are used as well. The notes of chocolate are there, but in more in the vein of a chocolate mocha. Notes of malt, coffee and bittersweet chocolate are all present. The finish lingers a bit and tastes strongly of a chocolate mocha coffee. The flavor isn’t as sweet as something you’d get from Starbucks, but you get the idea.
The mouthfeel is creamy and not too heavy.
Overall: I’m a fan of Young’s Double Chocolate Stout. You never forget your first, right?
I would caution first-timers to temper their expectations of sweetness. Yes, this is a chocolate stout. Yes, this is considered a sweet stout. But it’s not all that sweet. There are some great notes of chocolate and coffee in there, but there is some bitterness as well. I enjoy the balance of sweet and bitter here, but I’ve heard some folks complain that it’s not as sweet as they expected. If you realize that it’s not a very sweet beer and go in expecting that, then you’ll probably enjoy it more.