I’m a big fan of Perth’s Nail Brewing, their beers are gorgeous, balanced and a single glass is never enough. Their Clout Stout, a Russian Imperial Stout released every year in limited quantities, is no exception.
When I purchased my very own bottle of 2011 Nail Clout Stout it was the most money I’d spent on a single beer so I decided it would be opened on an undetermined special occasion in the future.
The bottle sat for months, unopened and still in its black box, waiting for that special occasion to come around. Birthdays, Christmas, New Years, they all came and went and the bottle wasn’t opened.
I always fall into this trap of allocating a beer for a special occasion. I end up over-thinking the whole thing, the point of enjoying a sensational beer in the first place gets lost in my determination to match beer to occasion.
The best time to open a special beer is whenever you damn well feel like it because first and foremost it’s there to be enjoyed
I opened my bottle of Clout Stout on a Friday night, an ordinary Friday night because I really, really felt like it. I documented the occasion with photos from box to glass, an idea from my partner –
The beer was drop dead gorgeous. Nuts, chocolate and fortified wine aromas backed up by flavours of dark chocolate and fruitcake encased in a surprisingly light-medium bodied stout. There’s a nice booziness that lingers on the palate too.
It seemed fitting to break out some cheese to accompany the beer and it just so happened we had some Stilton in the fridge. It was left over from a tasting session I did with Eagle Bay to prepare for our Beer & Cheese Masterclass at the recent Fremantle BeerFest. The cheese was Bassett Colston Stilton, a cow’s milk cheese from England with a mushroomy rind wrapped around a rich, salty blue body.
The Stilton was a nice complement to the Clout Stout, a contrast of sweet chocolate stout flavours with the strong mouldy blue.
If you see Clout Stout, buy it. You won’t regret it. Just remember to share it with people who will love it too.