mpbro (132) - Stanford, California, USA - DEC 21, 2002
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
UPDATED: JAN 14, 2003 14Jan2003 Update: After some prodding (from the brewer, no less), I
decided to clarify this rating. The beer is not
bitter by absolute standards, but it is (in my opinion)
over-bittered in the sense that it overwhelms the unique and
subtle flavors present in the beer. Re-rate ASAP.
(20Dec2002--22oz bottle) Reading the commercial description, the smokiness of this ’smoked porter’ is indeed subtle.
Unfortunately, the hop bitterness of this beer is anything BUT subtle.
In what seems to be a recurring theme from this brewer, excessive bitterness undermines what would otherwise be a unique and wonderful beer.
The beer is totally opaque. Its head is lumpy, rust-colored, fine-textured, very lacy, and provides a nicely persistent effervescence to the beer.
The aroma is surprisingly mild; a little smoky, with some malt and alcohol.
Flavor: starts bitter, ends bitter, bitter in the middle. In the midst of the bitterness, I did actually taste wonderful smokiness and tasty roasted malt.
The beer has perfect mouthfeel. ’Hop heads’ love this, but I think you can make a pretty convincing argument that the level of bitterness in this beer detracts from its overall quality.
ZiggyG (131) - Gladstone, Oregon, USA - JUN 11, 2007
3.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle. Pours very dark brown, very little light gets through this brew. A short thick nutty brown head takes a long while to dissipate. This beer smells like deeply roasted malts, and lots of them. There is a hint of smoke but it is well mixed with the roasted smell. The taste is a bit coffee and chocolate with the smoke coming through a bit more as the beer warms. This is a very enjoyable brew.
gameface23 (131) - Haverhill, Massachusetts, USA - JUL 19, 2008
2.8 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
UPDATED: AUG 10, 2008 Bottle that was a few month’s past it’s enjoy by date. It poured black with a tan head that was gone within 2 minutes. It smelled like someone lit a campfire in the distance. I could really taste the smokiness.
Fatalstrike (130) - Cerritos, California, USA - MAY 5, 2010
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: OCT 11, 2011 Bomber from BevMo Long Beach.
Aroma is full of smoky dark malt with a touch of roasted chocolate at the end. Pours a dark black with a solid off white foam head which lingers and leaves a bubbly lacing. Taste is smoke, coffee, and chocolate with a nice bitter finish courtesy of the hops. Solid carbonation and body to this porter. Overall an amazing porter with a great smoky character.
steeleliver (130) - Minnesota, USA - FEB 14, 2012
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: APR 15, 2012 Pitch black color. Couldn’t see light through it, just how I like it. Smoked flavor was present but not overwhelming. Accenting the smooth palate. Caramel chocolate smoothness with a masked alcohol content.
scottyshades (130) - Parkland, Florida, Florida, USA - SEP 20, 2012
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
On-tap a while back
A: Pours a rich mahogany color with a fluffy brown cap. Kind of opaque. Retention is pretty good
S: I was expecting more smoke, but nicely balanced - only a hint. I pick up on hops and a big dose of chocolate before the smoke. Big time roast, coffee, and caramel
T: Mellow beer. Still not a whole lot of smoke, more chocolaty and hoppy than anything. Balanced. Caramel and an underlying bitterness, nice depth
MF/O: Lighter body than I expected, bitterness lingers with chocolate. Overall, pretty drinkable stuff right here
jpfrog (130) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - MAR 21, 2003
3.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Dark, dark brown, bordering on black. Light looks red coming through. Tan creamy head that surprisingly doesn't last long. Thick lace on sides of glass that takes a minute to form. Smells of oak woodchips. Tastes like a chocolate malt. Thick, but not syrupy, almost chewy. An excellent porter.
davidCC (130) - New York, USA - DEC 20, 2004
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Thick smoky porter with a dark black color has a littly bit of a brown color when held up to light. Small amount of brown tan head but it lasts. Flavor is very smokey and very flavorful.
Aesir (130) - Tustin, California, USA - AUG 25, 2002
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Initially sweet and a little ghosty, that fades into a dry slightly smokey finish. This is a superb beer. A little more smoke flavor would be good, but it’s hard to complain.
rich42 (128) - USA - SEP 29, 2002
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
not what I expected from stone. nice soft, rich, chocolatey porter with a touch of smoke. very little bitterness. average thickness for the style. nose isn’t very well defined - but it may need to warm up a bit. not in anyway "over the top" like some of other stones brews - easy drinking. well balanced and enjoyable (but I’d gladly swap this for a bottle of their russian imperial stout)