This week’s pour is Unearthed by Long Trail Brewing Company. This American style stout has been widely available in liquor stores across New England since its inception in 2015. Long Trail is generally known for their ales and IPAs, with relatively few dark beers featured in their lineup. It’s rare for a brewery specialized in ales to release a great stout, and unfortunately Long Trail is no exception to the rule.
Unearthed poured opaque-black with a finger-wide tan head that quickly faded. No lacing was left behind on the glass after the foam dissipated. Tan micro-bubbles sporadically raised to the surface, but left behind no color or foam. It’s a solid looking stout, although I would generally expect better retention and at least some lacing.
The aroma was mostly of milk chocolate and bitter coffee, with a hint of brown sugar hiding in the background. The smell was quite generic, and nothing on the nose caught my interest. The flavor followed this underwhelming trend. Dark chocolate, bitter coffee and heavy roasted malt made up the taste. The malt overtook most of the other flavors, resulting in an unbalanced and unremarkable beer. More chocolate, coffee and brown sugar flavors would have been welcome to bring the malt into check.
The mouthfeel was my favorite part of this beer. The medium-full body and medium-light carbonation paired together well, leading into slight stickiness that lingered for a few moments. This thick but lightly carbonated mouthfeel lends itself well to stouts, and is one of the qualities that many mediocre stouts are lacking.
Unearthed isn’t bad. It isn’t offensive on the nose, it tastes pretty good and it has the mouthfeel that I look for in good stouts. Unfortunately, its just a bit underwhelming for its price point. A six-pack generally runs from $12 to $14. For just a few more dollars a bottle, you can get Founder’s Breakfast Stout, an excellent stout with similar flavors.
Many online beer reviewers love Unearthed, and I can almost see why. The mouthfeel is on point, and if the taste was closer to the aroma it would be an outstanding brew. Its entirely possible that the bottle I purchased was beyond its optimal date, or just a bad batch. I’m certainly willing to give it another try, but my first experience was rather underwhelming.
Will Harris is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.