donfardz64 (538) - Wellington, New Zealand, NEW ZEALAND - DEC 27, 2009
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle thanks to Dominic. Pours pitch black, thin dissipating head. Big cocoa nose, dark berries. Very chocolaty flavour, turning coffeeish later. Deep flavours, vanilla awesomeness. A massive body and great balance of flavours make this an astounding beer.
fidel (1302) - Livermore, California, USA - DEC 24, 2009
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Poured very black, smooth, lots of chocolate, vanilla, coffee, roasted malts. #1000 for me!
SamGamgee (2452) - down the whirlpool, California, USA - DEC 22, 2009
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
22oz bottle. Black with a medium tan head that leaves moderate foam and a touch of lace. Not inky though with some mahogany around the edges, which I guess is an argument for it being a porter (whatever that means). The aroma is great, with lots of coffee and maybe even more vanilla; almost like a mocha with a shot of vanilla syrup. I’m having Starbucks flashbacks, and I like it. Plenty of milk chocolate as well, and the vanilla aids in the impression of an immense sweetness. Did I already mention the vanilla? I got more coffee at first, but the vanilla is really coming out over time. Forty-five minutes in the glass, and this begins to resemble vanilla extract. I love that stuff. The flavor is sweet, but not thick or sticky (wait, that’s a mouthfeel). Coffee, poser dark chocolate, and lots of vanilla. Fresh coffee, which is always a nice touch. Just enough bitterness to balance the sweet, and no astringency or discomfort. Medium-full body with carbonation that falls somewhere between medium and low. Just a hint of alcohol warmth in the finish, but very integrated and smooth for a ten percent beer. Leans more heavily on the coffee, and especially the vanilla, than I was expecting, but this is fantastic stuff. A true dessert drink, (or morning depending on how you roll, and I do have a slight caffein buzz) but one that is not overly sweet or thick. I could drink a fair bit of this, with alcohol being a welcome limiting factor before any abrasive flavor characteristics. Ballast Point just nailed in on this one: full of flavor, yet balanced and super drinkable. The vanilla is almost silly at times, but I love the stuff and it really works with the rest of the beer.
thebaldwizard (1205) - Ohio, USA - DEC 22, 2009
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Wonderful brew here. Deep brown body with a large, frothy head. The aroma is delicious vanilla and coffee scents. The taste is a creamy vanilla infused coffee. Not too roasted or harsh at all, but full flavored. Perfect body and carbonation. A great treat.
mastabass666 (277) - California, USA - DEC 20, 2009
2.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 7/20
UPDATED: DEC 28, 2009 Black pour with a fading frothy head. Aroma is coffee and vanilla extract, roasted malts, sweet bread. Tastes of bitter dark chocolate, packaged hot coco mix and vanilla extract. Overall it tastes pretty artificial, or at least like vanilla extract poured into a porter. Bitter and light bodied. Not great.
nearbeer (3778) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - DEC 20, 2009
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bomber. Opaque black with a half-inch of lasting creamy foam. Aroma is coffee and bitter cocoa with some light cream. Flavor is big with vanilla, balanced by some bitter cocoa, peppery citrus, and coffee. Medium-heavy body is smooth and roasty-dry.
joeneugs (3326) - Livermore, California, USA - DEC 18, 2009
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 20/20
Amazing beer. The aroma hits you as soon as the glass is delivered. Hard roasted malts with heavy notes of chocolate, coffee, and vanilla. The flavor is delicious with smoke, roast, vanilla ice cream, espresso, chocolate. Well balanced flavor profile. I can’t say enough how much I enjoyed this. I imagine the barrel version is incredible as well.
afireinside96 (923) - Mountville, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 4, 2009
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
On tap at Capone’s. Dark brown, almost black, with a thin tan head. Smells of coffee, cocoa, and general roastiness. The flavor is coffee, oak, vanilla, and roasted grains. Medium-full body. Lots of coffee at the finish. Very yummy.
Beerapprentice (207) - Hopatcong, New Jersey, USA - DEC 1, 2009
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
On draft at Capones. Pours a clear black colour. It had no head when it got to my table so I’m unsure if it had one when it was poured from the tap. Smells of coffee, vanilla, malts, and chocolate. Vanilla, coffee, oak, malt and chocolate flavor. Ehhhh.
Silphium (3173) - East Lansing, Michigan, USA - NOV 29, 2009
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle via trade with toncatcher. Deep opaque brown-black body, medium clumping tan head. Vinous nose with notes of coffee, roasted malts, and vanilla. Vanilla hits the palate first, backed by roasted coffee beans and licorice. Robust body. This really reminded me of drinking a cold, carbonated, flavored coffee. And, no, I don’t mean that in a bad way. Exceedingly competent but falls short of greatness.