zdk (1832) - New York, New York, USA - DEC 19, 2010
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Tap at RnH for Stone tap takeover: Smooth chocolate, medium bodied and very drinkable. Some light roast but not all that smokey. Hint of vanilla but not strong. Quaffable and finishes a bit roasty.
Bigmmartin (603) - Dayton, Ohio, USA - DEC 8, 2010
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
On tap at Trolley Stop.
Not quite as impressive as I had hoped. Seems to suffer significantly from oxidation. It has an uncharacteristic fizzy/prickly carbonation as well as some bland cardboard flavors. You can still pick up on the original smoked porter and there are some notes of vanilla here and there. I know people say that the vanilla is overwhelming, but in this instance, it was too subdued. I question the quality of this specific sample rather than the recipe. Overall, still pretty good but I prefer the regular version.
Beardface (1517) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - DEC 4, 2010
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Tap at HAF. Essentially the regular smoked porter with a hint of vanilla added. But the regular smoked porter is a great beer, and this one is as well.
boFNjackson (4191) - Portland, Oregon, USA - DEC 2, 2010
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Tap @ Holiday Ale Fest... Poured near black with a beige head. Smokey, very similar to regular smoked porter with an added toasty sweetness.
smashteroid (262) - Alabama, USA - NOV 19, 2010
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
On tap at Lucky Devils in Los Angeles. I hungrily ordered a pint of this during LA beer week and was so happy to see that it was readily available. The aroma was exactly what I anticipated, but the vanilla bean flavor didnít translate as well in the taste as it did the scent. If I focused hard -- I donít have the most refined palate -- I could sense a glimmer of vanilla in the taste, but mostly it was the smokiness of the porter. Still, I ordered a second glass. This is one of the better Stone brews Iíve encountered.
dragonlady1010 (30) - Illinois, USA - NOV 17, 2010
4.4 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Big vanilla aroma with notes of chocolate and coffee. Deep brown with a small tan head. Flavors of vanilla, roasted malt, coffee, and chocolate. As it warms, the smoke becomes more apparent and balances beautifully with the vanilla. Fantastic beer.
mabel (7315) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - NOV 13, 2010
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: DEC 15, 2014 [3255-20100803] Sample. Sweet vanilla coffee and lovely wood roast malt aroma. Black body with a medium-lasting bubbly light tan head. Woody vanilla roast malt flavour has a lingering vanilla bean note. Full body. Smooth and drinkable, wow! What a great start to the festival! (10/3/9/4/18) 4.4
(@ GBBF 2010, London, England)
[6298B-20140502] Bottle. Smoked wood vanilla roast aroma. Slightly hazy, dark brown body with a medium-lasting creamy off-white head. Vanilla roasted grainy charred wood flavour. Full body. Not really a fan of the vanilla paired with charcoal, but itís not terrible. (6/3/6/3/13) 3.1
(c/o blankboy, w/ him, GregClow, jercraigs)
mfdros (35) - , New York, USA - OCT 16, 2010
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
chocolate, roasty, leather, vanilla, brown, clear, minimal head, medium sweetness, medium body, long finish. The vanilla doesnít add much to this beer. I prefer the smoked porter- this one seems a little thin and is tougher going down.
italarican (1526) - Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA - OCT 13, 2010
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Tap at the RnH Stone Takeover. Dark chocolate pour. Boatloads of pleasant vanilla bean in the nose, followed by oak and chocolate. Flavor is a nice blend of smoked sausage, vanilla bean, and oak. Thin body with a predominantly smoky finish. The sweetness takes a backseat to the smokiness, but I really like the sweet vanilla touch.
ChainGangGuy (4531) - Marietta, Georgia, USA - OCT 12, 2010
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Appearance: Displays a reasonably clear, dark brown body capped by a modest bone white head.
Smell: Nicely fragrant vanilla top note atop scents of light cocoa powder, mild roast coffee, and smokey peat.
Taste: Dark maltiness with taste of dark whole meal bread and hints of cocoa and coffee. Moderate sweetness. Vanilla coming through as a generous splash of A&W Cream Soda. A bit more coffee peeking through. Very subtle earthy bitterness tucked away in the back. Dries out for the most part, leaving you with a taste of lightly roasted, toasted vanilla bean pods.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-low carbonation.
Drinkability: Smooth, pleasant, and without any hard edges. Just as the standard iteration gives you just enough smoke character, so, too, does this give you just enough vanilla.