Review: Half Pints $ellout $tout

Being someone who has had good luck with trying some insanely great beers over the years, there's only been a few times I've missed out on some legit amazing beers, and even rarer to miss out on some local GOAT-level beers. One such beer is Half Pints' $ellout $tout - a boozy, heavy stout that I believe was a beer to poke fun at themselves for creating a beer that's aiming more for the Pilsner/Lager drinkers (the majority) at the time with the release of St James Pale Ale.. ah I still remember having $4 20oz pints of St James fresh on tap at Lo Pub back in the day, that made my 20s go by a bit smoother.

As for the "Sellout Stout", all my friends got their hands on the limited release but I never did. During my most recent visit to Winnipeg, I stopped at the brewery before heading home. I quickly glanced at the fridge and what did I see... a bunch of 355mL cans with a black and white punk rocker cartoon staring right at me, calling my name. So after 16 years, I finally tried $ellout $tout.

From the can: Brewed with heaps of roasted barley, crystal malts, and flaked oats and then hopped up with Willamette and Centennials. During the fermentation, jaggery (a sugar derived from palm tree sap in India) is added, and when finished, the brew is aged in Whiskey barrels for six months. The result is a beer of unquestionable character and complexity, much like the folks at Half Pints. 8.4% ABV

Appearance: Thick, black as the night and has a nice thick burnt caramel head on top. Within a minute of pouring I'm finding the head is already diminishing a good deal and leaving behind a nice layered lacing on the glass.

Aroma: Notes of toffee, mildly roasted notes to it, a surprising hint of pear, cocoa and a hint of burnt wood at the end.

Taste: Quite a sweet-forward stout with a heavy toffee-caramel vibe going on here. There's a tingling on the tongue that I'm getting from the roasted malt, while the wood used for barrel aging is giving off a slight presence to it but pretty muted. Like in the aroma, I get a bit of a fruitiness in there, predominantly pear, but also a slight hint of black licorice.. that's a fruit, right?

Overall Thoughts: This review took me over six months to review - I started to review it back in early autumn of 2023 but felt like I needed more notes for a beer I've been waiting 16 years to get my hand on - not expecting to ever get to try it at all. Looking back, it makes me chuckle thinking that this beer was conceived all because of the creation of St James Pale because now days you see every brewery on the planet creating crushable beers that beer geeks would scoff at in 2008 but now accept with welcome arms now.. I feel like if the can was re-designed to feature a modern era version of the rocker, he’d likely have a bit of a beer gut, a regular standard hair cut and probably a salt and pepper’d beard. Quite a boozy stout, creamy, mildly roasted, dark chocolate, tingles the tongue. Absolutely tasty - this alongside Le Temps Noir and Pothole Porter have made me a giddy boy for the past many years. 

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