bigbish (488) - California, USA - SEP 23, 2013
2.7 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 12/20
This is a pretty bland porter overall. There is a fairly strong vanilla flavor, and a touch of coffee, but it is thin, watery, and not complex. Donít bother.
DarkElf (3013) - La Jolla, California, USA - SEP 22, 2013
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
22-Sep-13 (12-oz bottle: Free sample bottle for stewarding the 2012 World Beer Cup in San Diego, CA)
This beer is medium-dark brown in color with good clarity at the edges. The tan head pours to half an inch before settling to a thin ring. Sweet vanilla extract and sweetened coffee aromas dominate the nose, though there is a pleasant spiciness and worty malt character behind the vanilla barrage. Even on the palate, the vanilla is very prominent, with the flavor of sweet coffee and milk right behind, so I might as well be drinking a Frappuccino. The malt is moderately toasty with a gently bitter roast. Itís medium-plus in weight, light-medium in carbonation, and the vanilla sweetness isnít balanced by enough bitterness, so while itís not really cloying, the unmitigated sweetness hurts drinkability. Overall, though, this is a fine beer for the style, just not my kind of thing. A little more porter and less vanilla would be a big improvement.
Acecia (14) - Ohio, USA - SEP 20, 2013
3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 7/20
Smells just like fresh black coffee with faint roasted aroma. Very nice, almost opaque dark brown color. Tasty, balanced, nothing overpowering. Strong roasted coffee flavor with hints of vanilla and a malty aftertaste. Surprisingly delicate mouthfeel for how dark and robust the beer appears. Personally I wish it had more body but it is very drinkable. Would be a good "starter" porter for people who are unfamiliar with rich, dark beers.
fattybladdy (415) - Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA - SEP 19, 2013
3.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle. Pours a dark brown, near black. Pretty sweet aroma of vanilla and chocolate. Taste is vanilla, chocolate, and coffee, but comes across pretty thin.
BoostIPA (1051) - Pouring Bus, New York, USA - SEP 2, 2013
2.3 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 8/20
drank straight from the bottle. smells like marshmallows. taste is very sweet and fudge like. thin body. Too sweet. Finishes with a slap of uninspired stupid.
BOSSbrewer (1236) - Arkansas, USA - AUG 31, 2013
2.6 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 11/20
Pours a dark brown with a thin off white head. Some lacing. Lots of vanilla up front but so much that it tastes artificial. Some coffee also especially on the finish. Not a strong beer.
Dal9000 (131) - Ohio, USA - AUG 25, 2013
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Tasted at 2013 Dayton Alefest- excellent vanilla chocolate immediate chocolate flavor transitioning to a deep vanilla thick flavor that rolls down your throat. 4 oz pour was just enough. A full glass might be too much.
---Rated via Beer Buddy
MrBeerFanatic (801) - Buffalo, New York, USA - AUG 24, 2013
2.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
Dark pepsi in color with a creamy head. Aromas light toast, slight burnt, light coffee. Flavors light toast,slight coffee, light grass hops, and vanilla bean. Light watery mouth appeal. Lightly sweet and bitter. A "light" porter. The vanilla comes through decently which I think is the only high-ílightí.
Ljwatson1 (4) - - AUG 23, 2013 does not count
2.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 8/20
Not that good...tastes like a sub par cream soda. No coffee at all. Too much vanilla, no hops.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
Chad9976 (1065) - Albany, New York, USA - AUG 19, 2013
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
I poured a 12oz bottle into a mug. It was bottled in January of 2013 and cost $2.80 ($0.23 per ounce).
Appearance: Dark brown hue with red highlights. Forms a small, tan, foaming head which mostly dissipates and leaves trace lacing.
Smell: Sweet vanilla bean aroma, hints of milk chocolate.
Taste: Sometimes regular olí porters can be boring - why not liven them up with a little added flavor? I have a feeling thatís what the thought was behind Atwater Vanilla Java Porter. Itís brewed with coffee beans and uses vanilla extract for flavoring. The only problem is the coffee really isnít present and the vanilla doesnít taste that authentic. Still, itís a pretty tasty, easy to drink beer - nothing wrong with that, eh?
The best way to describe the overall taste of this beer would be akin to cream soda. Vanilla is defintiely the dominating flavor, but itís not thick, sticky or cloying in any way. It tastes lightly sweet and almost seems to have a Splenda-like sweetness. Thereís also chocolate candy flavors to be found here, mostly through the middle of the palette. It finishes with a very light bitterness, though I donít detect any coffee presence at all. Usually, this type of beer would be right up my alley (and for the most part it is), but the lack of complexity and seemingly artificial flavors brings it down a bit. Otherwise, itís a fine liquid dessert brew.
Drinkability: Atwater Vanilla Java Porter is a really easy beer to drink. The mouthfeel is rather thin, with fine carbonation and a mostly clean finish. I found myself gulping this brew down, mostly because it was no challenge to drink. At 5.5% ABV itís a little too big to session, but light enough to have back-to-back servings without feeling overwhelmed in any way.