Beer Review: Macchiato // Imperial Macchiato – Wylam Brewery

It’s a double bill Stout Sunday today with two bangers from Newcastle based Wylam brewery. These are from the beers I got for my birthday a while back. ‘Macchiato’ and its follow up ‘Imperial Macchiato’ are both hazelnut and praline, coffee porters but with the latter clocking in at over 10% ABV and having been aged in Buffalo Trace whiskey barrels! The original, which appears to be available year round, I actually had quite a while ago. I wanted to make this a double post from the start but was was trying to find an appropriate time to enjoy the behemoth that is ‘Imperial Macchiatto’.

Starting with the OG, ‘Macchiato’ pours an incredible pen ink black with a tanned head that dissipates rather rapidly. On the nose you get hit with a fantastic nutty, mocha like aroma with a good amount demerara sugar too. The body is all creamy, silky coffee with a very well balanced praline sweetness. Personally, I think it could do with more hazelnut coming through. Ridiculously drinkable with a smooth finish, for a 6.5% beer.

Onto the 10.3% beast ‘Imperial Macchiato’. Visually very similar with an engine oil black pour but with an even darker head to it. This beer has an incredibly complex nose to it. The first hit is of dark chocolate covered coffee beans before transitioning into smokey wood and boozy bourbon. Dark chocolate and coffee is all over the flavour. The finish is like supping on a lovely glass of bourbon with that little alcohol kick to it. Much like it’s little brother, it’s as smooth as can be and to be honest belongs in the dangerous category.

A quick note on the can art: The original goes for a more abstract design with a variety of coffee bean shapes in a pattern. However the imperial can is the one for me. Gorgeous can with old sketches of coffee plants, eagles and Buffalo Trace stamps. Cracking!

What a pair of absolutely stunning beers that are actually rather different from each other. One hits the more classic porter spot with a bit of sweetness added to it to balance the coffee flavours. The other goes to the next level and really lets the barrel ageing shine through in my opinion. I definitely got both the woodiness from the barrels and the whiskey itself. My critique on the beers is actually the same for both. For me personally, I could have done with a stronger nuttiness on the body of the beer, as I thought the hazelnut went missing. Other than that they are both stunning brews. Wylam have, once again, continued to impress me with the quality of the beers and I look forward to knocking back the last of the ones I have!

Macchiato – Score: 9/10

Imperial Macchiato – Score: 9.5/10

Thanks for reading! Cheers!

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Additional Information (Macchiato)

  • Hops: Kentish Goldings Leaf
  • Malt: Not Available
  • IBU: Not Available
  • ABV: 6.5%
  • Gluten Free: No
  • Vegan: No

Additional Information (Imperial Macchiato)

  • Hops: Williamette
  • Malt: Not Available
  • IBU: Not Available
  • ABV: 10.3%
  • Gluten Free: No
  • Vegan: Yes!

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