Originally Posted by JBZ
Guinness is a dry stout, which, in my understanding, generally means it doesn't have as complex a flavor as some other stouts (imperial stout, milk stout, coffee stout, chocolate stout, oatmeal stout). I still really like Guinness, especially having had it in Ireland, where it really does taste better. The Samuel Smith Imperial Stout is terrific (I believe they also do an Oatmeal Stout which is very good). I haven't had the Dogfish Head Stout, but I'll try it (I had one of their 90 Minute IPAs and, frankly, I was underwhelmed - too much malt and not enough hops for my taste, but perhaps I'll try it again). The best stout I've ever had came from the Harpoon brewery out of Boston. I think it was an Oatmeal stout, and I had it on tap at the Sunset Grill & Tap in Brighton. Unfortunately, I don't think Harpoon makes it anymore.
I still drink Guinness, but it's usually in a situation at a bar where it's the only thing decent they have. Typically, for whatever reason, those places usually have Smithwick's, which I generally prefer. It's just that so many guys who hail Guiness as this amazing beer, often because they like the image associated with it as a guy's beer, have probably never had the really amazing stouts. But as I said, if you drank Guinness all through college, it probably has a value that far exceeds some object measure of quality. Or you might just really like it, if so, great for you, your beer is available nearly everywhere. I just find it bland by comparison to several which I can find readily at several liquor stores. If you go for the Dogfish Head stout, try the World Wide Stout. It's 18% alcohol and a pretty potent brew. Can't speak for their Chicory Stout as I've never had it. Rogue's Imperial Stout is fairly intense as well, with perhaps the strongest coffee taste of any stout I've ever had. And it comes in a cool bottle.