ThisWangsChung (826) - Leonardtown, Maryland, USA - JAN 22, 2013
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Reviewed 12/31/2012. Thanks to Momar42 for the bottle share! Part of a 22 oz bottle poured into a Hunahpu’s snifter. Notes from last night’s Skins/Cowboys game.
A: Pours a nicely opaque black color. The head is a one finger offwhite color with decent levels of lacing on the glass.
S: Lots of vanilla to start off - and I’m impressed by how naturally it comes off, as well. After that comes a moderate coffee profile...and then after that, tons of chocolaty dark (not necessarily roasted) malts. Not the greatest aroma ever, but I really like how it evolves in its layering.
T: The very first sip is a little harsh with vanilla, though it will smooth out after a few more sips. I really enjoy the layering of the flavors; first vanilla, than subtle mocha coffee, and finally a chocolate and licorice finish. There’s a vegetal component in there that I feel harms the balance. Quite good, apart from the overboard vanilla bittersweetness - but some aging will tone it down nicely.
M: The finish is pure sticky, wet sweetness, which fits what this tries to accomplish as a dessert beer. I could do without the slight sugar burn, though. In general, it’s lighter in texture and more sharply carbonated than a typical imperial stout - but its best feature is how superbly the alcohol is hidden. I didn’t get a look at the ABV on the bottle, but I could easily guess it to be 5.5% rather than 10%.
O: I hope it was just palate fatigue from drinking a quartet of sours before hand, because this was a bit of a letdown. Regardless, this a damn solid dessert beer that can become a really great one after the vanilla fades some. This wipes the floor with certain vanilla porters that will remain nameless, at least.
rangerred (989) - Johnson City, Tennessee, USA - JAN 21, 2013
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Poured into a snifter out of a 22oz bomber.
Pours pitch black and reminds me of used motor oil. Not much in the way of a head but the wisps of lacing left on the sides of the glass is truly impressive considering the abv.
The aroma is extremely pleasant and soft. Dark roast coffee and some light hints of caramel. The vanilla is there but it is very subtle, much more so than any other vanilla flavored beer I have had before. Dark chocolate is also mixed in. Sort of reminds me of a mocha coffee drink.
The flavor is even more impressive and substantial than the aroma. The vanilla is extremely subtle and well-integrated becoming most apparent immediately after the sip. Dark roast coffee and vanilla quickly followed by a shot of caramel. Bitterness reminiscent of dark chocolate and espresso followed then by more vanilla and moderate sweetness. Mouthfeeel is on the sticky side and there is a little bit of tannic bitterness on the roof of the mouth.
Overall, an extremely well done coffee vanilla porter. For once the vanilla is not overdone and is perfectly integrated. A sipper for sure but perfect for the cold winter months and one to savor over the course of an evening.
rbrazell (1702) - Florida, USA - JAN 20, 2013
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle from Proof. Black pour with a thick creamy tan head that laces. Big roasted coffee, creamy vanilla, raosted malts and chocolate on the nose. Sweet, creamy vanilla on the front of the tongue blending into roasted malts, strong coffee and chewy chocolate brownies with a light bitter ending. Fantastic balance with a slight sweet body. Great beer.
Wordsworth (135) - Austin, Texas, USA - JAN 20, 2013
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: NOV 19, 2013 Totally black with a creamy khaki head. Smells of coffee, vanilla, light hops a malts. The flavor is identical to the smell but very full and robust. Roasted flavors and malts finish a complex beer. This is absolutely phenomenal. Cannot stress how good this is.
llcooldave (1161) - San Antonio, Texas, USA - JAN 19, 2013
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Smoky coffee cocoa aroma. Pours black in the glass. More creamy coffee cocoa in the flavors. Wow, really awesome. I feel like I’m drinking an iced coffee. Overall, quite good.... Tasty. Thanks to BarZigKin for sharing!
Bricks (686) - Delaware, USA - JAN 19, 2013
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: JAN 17, 2015 Jet black with a healthy tan foamy head,. Aroma of coffee and perhaps a hint of vanilla. Tastes strong of coffee, vanilla and alcohol. Some burn but awesome creamy mouthfeel though some bitterness. Awesome beer.
omega (778) - NEW ZEALAND - JAN 18, 2013
4.6 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: FEB 17, 2014 Magnificent beer. Rich robust full bodied with real intent to overwhelm the palate with flavour.
RERATE: Having just tried a beer that I gave 4.4 how can I not improve on this? Previously this was in my top five. Where do I go from here? If you like full flavoured dark beers, then this is one of the finest examples you will see.
pellegjr (395) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - JAN 18, 2013
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bomber, pourds opaque black wih a foamy peated head, rich aroma of cream, cocoa, vanilla, some burnt sugar, flavor is full, rich, and sweet, tons of chocolatey round elements and super creamy, fairly assertive lingering bitterness, really delicious
tom10101 (3576) - Quebec, CANADA - JAN 18, 2013
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle (22 oz) 2012. Traded by Reynold314, thanks Matt! Dark brown (almost black) with a medium brown head and huge lacing. Aroma of vanilla,roasted malt and coffee. Taste is about the same with slight caramel notes. Medium body. Alcohol is well hidden. This Imperial Porter is super tasty and pleasant to drink, but not very complex (vanilla/coffee) and pretty straightforward.
swoopjones (6638) - Buffalo, New York, USA - JAN 18, 2013
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
draft at Coles, Buffalo. dark pour, tan head. roast, vanilla, coffee notes in both aroma and flavor. very drinkable at 10%. Fuller bodied. Very nice porter