devilben02 (281) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - JUN 27, 2011
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pours a common deep brown color with glimmers of red shining through and a meager cap of foam on top. The aroma is uncommon, however, with a smoothly-blended combination of smoke, a bit of nuttiness, and a light malty sweetness. The flavor is even more distinctive, with quite a bit of caramel sweetness being consumed by a sweet, woodsy smokiness. The soft carbonation keeps the flavors from becoming syrupy and helps the beer glide across the tongue.
jtd6628 (361) - North Carolina, USA - JUN 22, 2011
4.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
This is a beer you can smell and really have a great feel for how it taste. When consumed the amount of carbonation is a great compliment to it’s bold smell and flavor.
NachlamSie (3244) - Denver, Colorado, USA - JUN 8, 2011
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pint from draft at Thirsty Monk. Pours near black with a small head. That delicious hickory smoke is in the aroma, I just wish there was more of it. strong bacon and sharp, smoldering wood make up the nose with dark chocolate. The flavor is a little sticky with chocolate and molasses flavor which covers up that awesome smoke more than I’d like. There is still enough goodness in the finish to make this highly enjoyable. It just needs more smoke. So much potential.
cmc619 (501) - California, USA - JAN 17, 2011
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Growler from brewery taproom. Pours with a great, foamy, 1.5" head. Dark brown. Aroma is yeast, bacon, smoke, and something I can’t identify. Taste is malt, low bitters, mild smoke. Body/mouthfeel very light, almost thin. A bit dry on the finish--big carbonation bite. I had this with a burger, which went well, but I still need to try it with the recommended pairing: NC chopped BBQ.
This is a rauchbier, so people will either love it or hate it. I like rauchbier, and this is a highly accessible one, as they go--call it a Rauchbier Lite. If you’ve had Schlenkerla and been a bit put off by its extreme meatiness, you should try this.
phaleslu (9305) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - DEC 13, 2010
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Draft pint at the brewery. Pours a cloudy brown-amber color with a small off-white head. Aroma of campfire (definitely hickory wood), smoky, roasty malts, and dry toast. Not much but the smokiness going on in the nose, but it’s nice. Flavor of hickory smoked meat, toast, and some sweet malts. Light-bodied (another Fullsteam brew that would benefit from a bigger and/or better mouthfeel), with a smoky mouthfeel and low carbonation. Not bad but seems incomplete.
zizzybalubba (1785) - Raleigh, North Carolina, USA - NOV 2, 2010
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Growler direct from the brewery. Pours dark brown with a light tan head. Huge hickory smoke on the nose with faint dark chocolate in the background. Smoke is obviously present and consumes the palate providing an almost velvety feel that reminds me of standing near a campfire. While some smoked beers have a smoked meat flavor (sausage, salmon, etc.) this one is pure smoke. For some this may be too harsh but as I got used to the intial shock I became more infatuated by this beer. Per the suggestion of the brewery and its commercial description I chose to try this paired with Eastern North Carolina barbecue. I agree that this is the perfect pairing. When paired with barbecue the subtle smoke from the pork is in perfect harmony with the hickory smoke in the beer. Whether BBQ is your thing or not this is worth seeking out.
ucusty (2691) - raleigh, North Carolina, USA - OCT 26, 2010
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
WBF. My Favorite FS beer. Aroma is smokey, chocolate, and heavy roast. Flavor is more campfire than smokey meat. Light chocolate and coffee.
JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - OCT 23, 2010
3.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
On tap at the brewpub. I confess that I haven’t actually had this with any hog yet. BBQ outside, anyone? At any rate, the pour was thin and relatively undercarbonated. The nose is terrific, just the right blend of meat and wood smoke. But the base beer is more like an underattenuated brown than a porter. Needs work.
thegreenrooster (3970) - St.louis, Missouri, USA - OCT 9, 2010
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Pour is a black with a small tan head. Aroma is smoky and very meaty. Flavor is a nice smoke with a very roasted dark malt and finishes with a meaty flavor on the tounge. Liquid Carolina Bar-b-que.
NobleSquirrel (3439) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 28, 2010
3.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 14/20
Draft at Flying Saucer Raleigh. Pours a slightly hazed brown with mini head. Nose is hickory smoked bacon, molasses and a bit of roast. On taste, thin bodied with some bready notes that are dominated by the smoke. Minimal phenolics. If this had a bit more body, it’d be very good. Still pretty ice.