Hang on a moment, I thought I had covered all my Swedish beers in my last two articles but I was mistaken. I have one more called Sotholmon Extra Stout. I will not attempt to pronounce or spell the brewery, despite the fact I can just copy and paste it.
I am a stout man at heart (body too) so I always get excited when trying another one. This pours like motor oil. If motor oil had a beery head, this is what it would look like in a glass. It is a wonderful beer I must say. The aroma was all milk chocolate, espresso beans, a little wood and some smoke. All of these aromas are obvious when you taste it but become more chocolaty and milky and then the burnt coffee beans become quite obvious. The finish is incredibly dry and that was to my liking.
And now on to an Italian beer, it seems the only Italian beer I managed to get home from the Beer Bloggers Conference, though I did taste one or two others on the night of many beers, I was just beyond the ability to take notes so I don't even remember what they were. The one I managed to get home was Birrificio L'Olmaia BK. This is another imperial stout and quite different from its Swedish counterpart.
I took a sniff and was surprised by how fruity it was with prunes dominating and there was also a strong whiff of chocolate. Off to a good start then so I took a mouthful and found the prunes and chocolate still there in force but joined by a milky/creamy coffee with plenty of residual sweetness and then a slight sour tang on the finish. I quite enjoyed it.
At 6% it's on the lower end of the scale for Imperial Stouts, unless of course they don't consider it imperial and it's just a strong stout? Either way, it is not a session stout. I wish I had managed to get more of their beers home as they are not, to my knowledge, available in Ireland.
My eyes have recently been opened about these two countries that, let's face it, are not world famous for their craft beer or even for being beer drinkers. Italy of course has wine and Sweden I figure is more a vodka (and the like) country. I have had a lot more experience with Italy and know they produce some great beer but now I can add Sweden to my list of places I should learn more about.