Well, after many years of wanting to try this, I ordered a box from Harvey's brewery. Surely this is as close as we can get to a mid-nineteenth century stout. Brewed once a year (27 barrels, I think), using the correct malt (Marris Otter Pale, amber, brown, black, plus invert sugar), hops (6 pounds in each barrel), and, actually I can't remember the (two?) original yeast strains, but the third, the wild yeast, Debaromyces Hanseni, perhaps adds the final touch of authenticity, for stouts of this era would have a certain sourness (I think it was an accidental discovery by the brewer). Even without the yeast this would be a great beer, but opening the (275ml) bottle you can smell a vinegary scent, or perhaps it smells more like a good sour kriek beer. The carbonation is wonderfully soft, just right. Certain flavours of strong stouts are there, but the fruity/sour/savoury strangeness lifts it, improves it tremendously. Frankly, I think this is the best stout I've ever tried, and possibly the best beer I've had (well, we'll see after I've finished the twelve bottles). The brewer has done a great job here. And I have to say the box couldn't have arrived quicker. The service was unfussy and efficient.