THE STOUT THAT STARTED it all at Emmett’s. Also one of the few to aim unabashedly for easy drinking and taste like more than an adult coffee cooler. But it does come close: nitrogen dispensation and oatmeal adjunct combine to given the Double Barrel a velvety mouthfeel from head to dregs. Roasted malts take the fore in the aroma, supported by coffee beans and some dark chocolate, though none too much. Hop presence is very light after the midpalate and not a factor in the finish, which is clean and clear. Body a little on the lighter side, too, but with enough of the dark malt breadiness coming through to define a real flavor beyond the tenacious tan head, which is actually creamy in flavor as well as texture. No lingering sugar grit or burnt residue, even if its pour and coloration are clearly from the Guinness playbook. Regrettably, the Double Barrel’s successor, the Dry Irish, is even more unabashedly derivative and has displaced the Double Barrel almost completely.
Served: On nitro tap (Emmett’s Tavern, Palatine)