It only takes a puff of a cool breeze in South Australia to bring out the stouts; the state's brewers don’t need much encouragement. And it appears Shapeshifter have been chomping at the bit to play around with some darker styles, releasing not one but three new stouts in quick succession.
It's time to layer up, according to Hoodie Weather, a 6.3 percent ABV oatmeal stout featuring German malts, roasted barley and rolled oats, that kickstarts the warming up phase. Pouring a dark brown, it utilises the oats to provide a silky, medium mouthfeel. The speciality grains provide solid coffee and chocolate flavours, with just a touch of roast, while you'll meet sweetness early before the coffee contributes to a balancing bitterness at the end.
Craic is an Irish term used to describe good times, and in liquid form here takes the shape of an Irish stout that made its first appearance on St Patrick's Day. Light on its feet at 4.2 percent ABV, thus perfect for lengthy day celebrations honouring a patron saint, it's easy-drinking, with a lighter mouthfeel and body to most local stouts, opening with a little milk cream sweetness, some roast, milk chocolate, even a touch of smoke, all interwoven and leading you into a dry, dry finish. It’s good craic, to be sure.
Which brings us to Shot In The Dark... First came the dark malt base blending ale, light chocolate, black, extra special, Caramunich 111 and rolled oats. Then came the coffee from local coffee roasters, Hark!, who worked with Shapeshifter to create a blend of organic Uganda and Peruvian beans.
The beer is named in part after the coffee shot addition and also due to its pitch black colour, where again the coffee contributes. Have I mentioned that this stout is all about the coffee? Rich, decadent, silky espresso leads the way with just a little dusty milk chocolate chiming in flavour wise. The coffee bitterness rounds out the stout alongside enough caffeine to give one's heart the jitters.
Published April 14, 2023 2023-04-14 00:00:00