Most of the online recipes for Chocolate Guinness Brownies are remarkably similar, and they seem to be based on this recipe for what are called 'Grace Neill's Chocolate and Guinness Brownies' originally published in "The New Irish Table" by Margaret M. Johnson. Adaptations use more flour, add chocolate chips, play around with the types of chocolate used and bake in a larger pan, but are essentially this recipe.
Having had two tasting sessions now, I still can't decide if I like them! If someone had handed me a dessert plate, with a slice of this brownie, a drizzle of chocolate sauce and a neat quenelle of sweetened whipped cream, and called it a 'Chocolate and Guinness Terrine' or something similar, I would have been really pleased, but I can't reconcile either the taste or the texture with what I know as a brownie.
It's not very sweet, for one thing. This isn't something I usually complain about, but in this case, the bitterness of the stout beer and the large amount of cocoa, isn't balanced with enough sugar. The stout isn't evident as a flavour, but gives a subtle overtone of bitterness. Then there's the texture - it's very close textured, but in a mousse-y way rather than a cake crumb way. I don't mind dense brownies, but here the close texture doesn't give a dense fudgy feel in the mouth. When eaten it feels light but cloying - there's not much of substance there to chew on - a very difficult sensation to describe. Anyway, it's a texture that's fine for a dessert, but not a cake, if you can see what I'm getting at! Having said all that, it's not an unpleasant flavour, unless you really need more sweetness. I don't think I'm likely to make these again, given the number of better brownie recipes I have, although it's worth noting the recipe for an unusual dinner party dessert!