Ofortuna (322) - Grafton, Wisconsin, USA - JUL 4, 2007
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
2002 vintage courtesy of Ughsmash by way of mswf. A huge "thank you!!!!" to both of them for this rare treat. I was very much aniticipating this one as the 2002 is widely considered one of the hallmark years for this beer. SMOKE!! Thatís all you need to know. Iíve yet to have had an American smoked "anything" that matches up well to the famed Bamberg beers that I hold so dear. This one does just that. What makes it even more remarkable is how well itís held up after five years. This must have had just an insane smoke quality to it when fresh. Now, the porter-side of the beer matches perfectly to the rauch side. Great balance with this beer. Nice toasted malt notes that stand-up very well to the aggressive smoked side. Coffee, bittersweet chocolate and bits of burnt caramel. Smoke on the aroma, palate and finish are touched with a bit of peppery spiciness. Body a bit light and a little sad to see it was not bottle conditioned. This makes it even more remarkable to me how well it held up. Worth the hype for this particular vintage.
Ughsmash (7501) - Pewaukee, Wisconsin, USA - JUL 4, 2007
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
2002 bottle, extra special thanks to mswf!!! Poured very deep brown with an initial thicker caramel head.. receded rather quickly to a scattered loose cap. The aroma was very heavily smoked, even after the 5 years.. roasted bakerís chocolate beneath, providing a wonderful base... some sweet notes emerge as an afterthought, and make this truly decadent! Flavor had almost burnt, semi-sweet chocolate at the core.. some coffee bitterness with very well-smoked beechwood rising above all.. semi-sweet chocolate and plum skins with that wonderful smoke through the finish. This was a little lighter-bodied than Iíd like, but it felt great.. slightly grainy, well-smoked, with a long, camp-fire-infused chocolate finish. Just loved it! Thanks Matt!
MrBendo (1064) - Swedesboro, New Jersey, USA - JUL 3, 2007
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Thanks to Naven for the bottle. Near black with a small head. Aroma like a campfire with chocolate and dark malt. Smell matches the flavor. The smoke is prominent, but doesnít overpower the sweet malt. Some bitterness near the end. Medium to heavy body. Quality brew.
tennisjoel (1299) - Rochester, Minnesota, USA - JUL 3, 2007
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
RBSG 2007 Grand Tasting
When I first started rating beer, I had heard about this beer since it had won in the battle of the beers online competition on realbeer.com. Keep in mind, I am not a huge fan of smoked beers in general. There is a strong peaty aroma to this beer. Some coffee notes, chocolate, and some licorice as well. Pretty decent.
islay (1998) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - JUN 30, 2007
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Approximately 3 oz. sample at the Grand Tasting of the RateBeer Summer Gathering 2007 in the Twin Cities, MN on July 23, 2007. I took about 1.5 oz. of all of the other beers. I initially took a 1.5 oz. sample of this one, but it was so good that I went back for another even with all of the other great beer available and even after I said I had stopped drinking for the night. This was the twentieth of 26 beers that I sampled and rated during the tasting. Smoky aroma with both Scotch-ale-esque peat-like and Rauchbier-esque sausage-like scents. Very strong and superb aroma. Pours a dark brown with a light tan head. Looks like rich, dark, melted chocolate. Smoky, almost burnt, flavor obvious. Sweet, malty base that is also surprisingly hoppy. Delicious. Long, roasted, smoky aftertaste. Medium to heavy body. Alaskan Smoked Porter has just the right level of smoke; it is very smoky but not overwhelming. More importantly, the underlying beer is probably the best Iíve ever had in a smoked. This would be a top-notch porter even without the smoke. Perhaps because of my Scotch whisky background, Iím a sucker for a good smoked beer (Iím even tempted to switch my favorite style designation from IPA to Smoked after trying this gem), and Alaskan Smoked Porter definitely qualifies in that category. This has been near the top of my personal most wanted list ever since I really got into beer, and I am happy to say that I am anything but disappointed. This was the best beer that I had at the tasting. Thanks to Skyview for letting me try this masterpiece.
BDR (2534) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - JUN 28, 2007
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Sampled at the RBSG 07 Grand Tasting. I believe I have Skyview to thank for this one. Dark brown body with smoked meat nose. Carbonated body with a dry finish and excellent smoked flavor.
maniac (3800) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - JUN 28, 2007
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
RBSG 2007 Grand Tasting. 2006 bottle. Dark brown body with a creamy light brown head. Smoke, salt and caramel aroma. Smoke salt and molassas flavor.
cbkschubert (2901) - BFE, Arizona, USA - JUN 26, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2006 22 oz. bottle from Liquid Solutions - Pours a dark brown color with a one finger thick tan head that eventualy settles to a thin foamy ring around the glass. Very light lacing. Has a strong smoked ham aroma. Smells like the liquid smoke I use when making beef jerky. The initial flavor is all smoke. As the beer slowly warms the smokiness fades some and the malt begins to stick itsí head out. This isnít a complex beer by any means. Itís a straight shooter. The perfect breakfast beer. The clean bitterness lets you know you are still drinking a beer. Medium body. This bad boy isnít for everyone, but I like it. Gonna sit on the í05 bottle I have for a few years. Should be nice.
hellbilly (3249) - scottsdale Łber alles, Arizona, USA - JUN 25, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
2005 bottle...aroma is malt and lebanon bologna...initial flavor is dominated by smoke. luckily it diminishes as the beer warms up to reveal coffee, licorice and nutty chocolate characters.
mcallister (31) - Dayton, Ohio, USA - JUN 16, 2007
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2005 version of this beer and my first experience at it.
Pours a robust brown bordering on black with a thick foamy two
finger mocha head that leaves some slicing lace.
Smoked meats up front with hints of dark fruit and a slight
bitter chocolate aroma. After nearly 15 minutes of decanting
the smoke steps back and really lets the dark chocolate aromas
Very balanced flavors of dark chocolate, black licorice,
smoked pork, and other dark fruits. Not the most complex beer
Iíve tried yet very nice and easy to drink for a smoked style.