Asahi: Stout (Japan: Foreign Stout: 8% ABV)

Visual: Dark brown black with a smooth pour and middling beige head that is short lasting.

Nose: Roasted nuts, liquorice and treacle. Slightly cloying cream. Sickly sweet like overripe fruit – but appealing, not off putting.

Body: Roasted nuts, charred wood. Dark but sweet chocolate. Then rounds off with more nuts. Just slightly fizzy.

Finish: Slick, thick treacle. Jelly, cloying cream again. Malt and milk chocolate. Black cherry. Finally a long experience of bitter chocolate.

Conclusion: A drink comparable to Guinness export stout in its cloying nose, this beer however is far less thick and slightly more fizzy.

As often is the case, the fizz is the weakness, but it is a mild flaw this time and does not overpower a wonderful roasted nut body which is pleasurable and leads to long lasting finish.

The roasted nuts and dark colour make me wonder if this would be the perfect beer for drinking during the wonderful colours of the Obon celebrations.

A good quality stout that resides just below the heavy hitters such as Sam Smiths and the Hercule stout, but still stands tall in a field of giants that is the stouts.