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The Nook Oat Stout - abv 5.2 per cent; £2.40/50cl
Hidden away down a narrow alley in the centre of the West Yorkshire town of Holmfirth is the Rose and Crown.
Locals refer to it simply as The Nook, and it has been a pub since 1754, appearing in all CAMRA’s Good Beer Guides over the past three decades.
In 2009, a brewhouse was added to supply not only the pub and its adjoining Carniceria restaurant, but also the free trade.
This week we encounter its Oat Stout. Deep red-brown in colour, there is a thin but persistent off-white head, and a steady stream of bubbles.
The aroma is of roast coffee beans and bitter chocolate accompanied by an almost dusty dryness. The flavour is roasty too, this time a roast malt bitterness, with black cherry fruit, liquorice, and a touch of orange zest. It has a smooth, slightly oily texture, with bitter hops and roasted nuts appearing in the aftertaste (that's the third time I've used "roast"…it's a very roasty beer!). The finish is very dry and slightly peppery.
A fine beer that keeps its 5.2 per cent abv, like the pub itself, well-hidden. As the label proclaims… tha’s nowt like stout!