Adventures in Stout, Hearty, Irish Stew


I am a good home style cook, so Irish stew did not seem too daunting.  I found a recipe and it was close to the stew I usually make except it had one cup of “very stout” beer and one cup of “hearty red “wine. That didn’t scare me too much until I started thinking about those vague adjectives.

How do I tell if a beer is stout?    And I haven’t even handled the hearty red wine… I think I have the red part down. Is hearty, a “full bodied “wine like a Merlot?  Well, to give you a little background, let us not forget that I was raised in a Pentecostal church where beer and wine were a bit taboo, so I am pretty lucky to know that wine comes in reds and whites.

I finally walked into the liquor store and found Guinness Extra Stout. I figured it must be stout, since it says extra stout on the label. For the wine I wasn’t that lucky, I had to ask the clerk about the wine!  She picked a wine blend called, “Apothic Blend”. I guess hearty does not mean a Merlot. I just have so many more questions, like, what is a wine blend? Oh, well those questions will keep for another day.

I am excited about my stout and hearty stew. Those words mean more to me when they are used in relation to stew. It indeed smells delicious. Proof that even an old cook like me can learn a thing or two about stew!

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