Old Chimney: Black Rat Milk Stout (England: Sweet Stout: 4.5% ABV)

Visual: Black moderately thick body with a ha’ inch of brown bubbly froth of short lifespan.

Nose: Treacle, milk, oysters and milk chocolate.

Body: Quite sweet, some charring and black toffee. Slight egg white. Brown bread, mocha froth and grated chocolate flake. Turkish delight (The commercial mainstream chocolate covered type)

Finish: Aniseed, more charring, lactose and liquorice.

Conclusion: A quite light and easy drinking stout. Simple and satisfying. Unlike a lot of old chimneys products it doesn’t seem to stretch the range very much, thus sits comfortably in the competent, tasty but unexceptional range.

Well made though, no regrets in drinking it as it has a decent flavour and body. All the elements are well crafted and balanced, and the flavour slowly grows as you drink – the sign of a well crafted ale designed for multiple pints – in fact I am still drinking as i write and the subtle growing texture is impressing me more as I progress through the pint. Still not wildly experimental, but my respect for its well crafted nature has grown significantly.

For all its lack of experimentation it still holds your attention.