Thorpe429 (4944) - , Illinois, USA - APR 21, 2011
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle courtesy of rpstevens. Thanks, Ryan! Shared at the post-Christmas tasting and served in a Cantillon tulip.
Pour yields a very dark brown beer with a thin tan head that head some moderate staying power. Thin collar toward the end. The nose is pretty intense with a nice complexity. Good barrel character plus some vanilla, roast, chocolate, and coffee. Everything blends quite well and the barrel-aging has been good to this one. The flavor isnít quite as powerful, though all the same elements are there; however, the barrel and roast elements really dominate. Good roasty and slightly-boozy feel. Drinks quite well and is another hit from Shaun.
Serving type: bottle
Reviewed on: 01-05-2011
kbutler1 (1332) - Minnesota, USA - APR 15, 2011
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: SEP 25, 2012 Bottle. Apparently only 1 of 300 bottles made. Thanks to Mothman for sharing! Poued into a tulip glass a dark brown almost black color with a big mocha tan head that slowly settles down. Very roasty, coffee like aroma in the nose along with some dark chocolate and leather. The barrel comes across me as being rather mild and I never would have picked out the Utopias barrels being used. Some alcohol notes as well. Medium mouthfeel with carbonation, for me this is a downer and wished it had a more substantial feel. The flavor is roasted coffee and mild dark chocolate. The roast seems to be a tad heavy bordering on burnt coffee. Boozy. Dry oaky finish. Some dark fruit notes as well. Overall, a tad let down on this one.
jrallen34 (3475) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAR 30, 2011
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Thorpe AGAIN!!! Waxed sealed bottle into my Narke tulip...A very dark black for a porter, light tan head, great carbonation at first but then the head is gone right away, too light overall...The aroma is all coffee, but its old off coffee, not the best aroma, not sure what the barrel added to this if anything, no char, wood or vanilla...The taste is much better as the coffee is complimented by chocolate, and the emergence of the barrel; wood with with some sweet notes I attribute to the Utopias.
Overall, this is a good porter, but it somehow fell short of my expectations. I would have thought the Utopia aging would have added much more complexity of sweet maple and wood notes and it didnít happen. Would love to see what would happen if this was aged much longer.
Rastacouere (6103) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - MAR 27, 2011
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
500 ml bought at the brewery. Over an opaque blackness, a stupendous tan one-inch foam climbs inches and inches on the sides of the glass. Complex, rich aroma with integrated, never too corny bourbon, woody, soul-warming, smoky where delicious leafy tobacco/cigar overtones marry with the soft molasses and roasty, earthy coffee. Lots of things going on and they keep on in mouth where the beer is surprisingly warming, even hot for an 8% ABV ale, a trait I appreciate a little less. At the same time, a certain acidity grows up from the roast and is less integrated with the bourbon in mouth than in the aroma. Thick, almost chewy palate with an expanding foamy texture of smooth large bubbles that never bite. Spectacular mouthfeel, really. A sure hit, this one, purely professional craftmanship in a bottle.
egajdzis (5119) - Spring Mount, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 27, 2011
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Opaque black color with a medium sized tan head that left nice lacing on the glass. Aroma of roasted malts, burnt wood, vanilla bean, and dark chocolate. Taste of roasted malt, some smoke, vanilla, wood, chocolate malts, maple, and light, dry alcohol in the finish.
TomDecapolis (4340) - Lawrence, Kansas, USA - MAR 26, 2011
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours a deep black with a creamy tan head. Aroma of vanilla, chocolate, light bourbon, dark fruits and wood. Flavor of dark chocolate, wood, vanilla, light bourbon and some alcohol that lingers a bit. Rather aggressive bitterness.
Verecund (82) - North Carolina, USA - MAR 17, 2011
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
500ml bottle into the new Lost Abbey tulip. March 17, 2011. Thanks to an unnamed RB for this.
The color reminds me of Humeís problem of the missing shade of blue. Itís that missing shade of almost, so-close-to-being-black brown-black; Iím perceiving a color for the first time, even though Iíve already formed the idea. A two to three finger mocha head sits still atop the beer. The lacing leaves terrifying images on the side of the glass.
Fairly sweet nose of chocolate, anise, roasted malt, soft bourbon, and some spicy, wood character.
Amalgam of bittersweet chocolate, chocolate covered coffee beans, and licorice; then, sweet bourbon, butterscotch, and vanilla mid-palate; finally, a tiny bit of smoke, strong spicy woodiness, caramel, and a kick of a finish (featuring some boozy heat, anonymous earthy bitterness, and bittersweet chocolate). As with all of his beers, Shaunís barrel-aging is nicely integrated and really makes this a complex offering that differs from most bourbon bombs.
Medium-bodied, with typical low HF carbonation, making this porter light on the tongue, but creamy. It slides down the throat.
Another winner. I canít believe this was barrel-aged for seven months. The base beer must be peculiarly complex.
Fred82 (2069) - Quťbec City, Quebec, CANADA - MAR 16, 2011
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
500ml bottle, Was no label from bought at HF.
Appearance : Pitch black big foamy and creamy brown expresso-like head. Light lacing but very long head retention.
Aroma : Lots of woody barrel with notes of bourbon. Some roasted malt, chocolate and coffee underneath. Light hops too. This is mainly barrel though. Notes of raisins and vanilla.
Taste : Very complex and rich. At first there is a lot of barrel. Notes of bourbon and lots of wood. Then the roasted malt and chocolate comes along with the coffee while still having that lingering "liquoreux" woody bourbon. Finish is very lengthy. Barrel comes again in the finish but there is more place for the awesome chocolate and roasted malt. Light smoke on finish. Lots of barrel on finish.
Overall : Wow this is very complex. I think the barrel is a tiny bit too intense. I would have liked to see a bit more of the base beer. Still, the barrel gives it a lot of complexity and depth. Finish is just so good. A bit too warm maybe especially for the low abv. Another gem by Shaun !
Lagunitasfan (1309) - San Diego, California, USA - FEB 21, 2011
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Enjoyed at Dasilkyís pad. Black/brown with dark brown head. Mid thickness in glass. Funky sourness in nose, on top of alcohol high and clear. Cherries. Taste has big sweetness, dark fruit in front of aspirin and alcohol. Medicine and turpentine.
scrizzz (2223) - Bothell, Washington, USA - FEB 19, 2011
3.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
holy smoke! thanks riversideak! soft creamy coffee nose, warm gentle barrel character. black, small tan head. very hot, some raspberry fruit, strong biting heat, charred oaky barrel, offensively hot