cquiroga (371) - Tujunga, California, USA - JAN 6, 2007
1/5/07. Poured out of 12 oz. bottle, obtained in SecretSanta exchange on RateBeer 12/6/06. Dark black-brown in color, utterly opaque with a mostly-dense, medium-sized, brown-tan head. Peppered with tiny black bits of small-but-persistent bubbles and blotches of sudsier, rocky bubbles, the head seems to grow lighter in color a bit after the initial pour. Finely-beaded lacing undergoes a similar shift to more mundane activity after its early displays of elegance. Aroma climbs out of the bottle when I first open it; dense layers of baker’s chocolate, dry roast, some sort of lighter-chocolate toffee/nougat candies, hints of cherry and a distinct (and not entirely welcome) grapey lactic acidity. That last component is not entirely bad, but it’s a bit scary in its nearly-overwhelming prominence for me. Flavor is big and similarly complex, with a lot of wine-soaked chocolate cakey affectation (key word here being "affectation"). There’s some roasted char and dry chocolate to accompany the vinous elements, but I specifically DON’T get any cherry cordial. More distinctly reminiscent of that earlier grapeyness. Detectable-but-not-overwhelming alcohol presence. No suggestion of higher alcohols at all, but there’s a bit of a kick there that glides along with some woody-roasty vinous notes. Finish is alarmingly complex with bold flavors emerging and then shrinking back into the shadows-- cocoa powder, milky-woody crispness, even something like earthy/earthenware toasted nuts. (Earthenware-- what a pretentious term to use when describing a beer, but I couldn’t shake it as I wrote this, so hopefully someone will know what the hell I’m picking out by virtue of my leaving that here.) There’s a separate kind of earthy, almost mushroomy flavor that wraps around the whole array. Gently scrubby mouthfeel that feels at times fluffy and smooth, other times almost fizzy and tingling. There’s a drying, wood-like acidity at work too, almost like the ashy bite of a swig of water with a cigarette butt in it (sad to say, I actually know what this is like). But this swig is pleasant. Some beautiful tobacco notes that are pretty deep in the background, but they’re unmistakable to me. I bet this would be great with a cigar. A substantial problem I have is that the gas appears to be escaping from this beer quite quickly; this makes for an experience in constant flux (which can certainly be seen as a good thing, for the most part)-- in aroma, flavor, everything. But the mouthfeel is simply devolving. I can’t say I’m in love, but the sheer density and breadth of flavors going on here is something that must be commended. Too bad I didn’t entirely enjoy all of them. One of those great beers that reminds me of how subjective a lot of the experience is-- for another palate I’m sure this is a mind-blowingly perfect creation. cewldre (268) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - JAN 6, 2007
Bottle from Santey Clause: Pours a very nice black, with a nice, slightly tan head that dissipates quickly. The smell is very interesting. I am noting some chocolate, coffee and some dark fruit as well. Wow, the taste is very very nice too. I notice some nice roastiness, chocolate and just a hint of that dark fruit. The taste is very much amazing, I don’t know how else to describe it. I want to thank Santa for this one. Sadly though, I now need more. Oh, and thanks again Santa! Sickboy282 (1114) - San Diego, California, USA - JAN 5, 2007
Pours a deep brown hue with a light =brown head with decent lacing. Aromas of chocolate, a little sourness/cherry, and a little vinuous. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with flavors of cherries, dates, prunes, a light roastiness, chocolate, Perfect corbation for the style, which is lighter than most brews. shigadeyo (3749) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - JAN 4, 2007
UPDATED: AUG 29, 2009 jasonp (1581) - Ashburn, Virginia, USA - JAN 1, 2007
1/04/2007: I received a few bottles of The Duck-Rabbit Baltic Porter through a trade from kenb. Thanks Ken! --
Let me start by saying that this is a truly great beer and is rich and complex in flavor. The flavor is wonderful and almost diffucult to even describe. All of that being said, here is my attempt to record some of my thoughts and observations of this beer... Color is black with a large, creamy brown head. The aroma reminds me of a well-aged port. The flavor is also has many port-like flavors as well as some creamy vanilla, chocolate, lightly roasted coffee, and a hint of candied anise. There is just the right amount of dark chocolate bitterness in the finish to balance everything out nicely. The alcohol is barely detectable until the beer warms up some. This beer is full bodied and rich creamy, and smooth on the palate. Overall this is one of the best porters I have had. Worth seeking out and savoring very slowly!
12 of bottle (Enjoy by 7/07). Rating: 7/4/9/5/18=4.3
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8/29/2009: The Duck-Rabbit Baltic Porter... Aroma: Dark chocolate; hints of char, smoke, and licorice; very deep red wine/dark fruit notes. Appearance: Dark chocolate color/near black with a dense and lasting brown-colored head. Flavor: Very much like the aroma; more red wine and port than I remember from before; lots of chocolate; vanilla; espresso; cocoa. Palate: Medium to medium-full body; smooth and creamy; milky. Overall: Many say that this beer does not age well, but I completely disagree. I think that only the mouthfeel has suffered very slightly. The flavor may not be quite as rich or complex, but it is still extremely tasty and worthy of slow enjoyment!
Twelve fluid ounce bottle ( 9% alcohol by volume; Enjoy by 7/07) from kenb via trade in October 2006. Thanks again Ken. Rating: 8/4/8/4/17=4.1
Bottle. Pours opaque black with a thick light brown head that slowly fades over the course of consumption. Mocha, roasted malt, dark cherry and red wine in the nose. Pleasantly sweet and malty. Flavor has notes of dark chocolate, sweet caramel, cherry, dark fruit/figs, molasses, red wine, some bitter roastiness and lactic sourness at the end. I detected somewhat of an herbal hop note in there as well. Pretty complex. Alcohol character is present but very smooth. Creamy and lush on the palate with subtle, fine-beaded carbonation. Perfect for sipping and savoring. Overall, very impressive.
hopdog (12673) - Lansdale, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 28, 2006
12oz bottle acquired in trades. Bottle labeled BB 7 ’07. Poured a dark black with an averaged sized tan head. Aromas of smoke, chocolate, dark fruits, and roast. Tastes of dark fruits (raisins & plums), chocoalte and roast. Creamy and smooth body. TomDecapolis (4618) - Milton, Delaware, USA - DEC 28, 2006
UPDATED: JAN 8, 2008 Thanks to hopdog for sharing this from my wants list. Pours a deep black with an average dark bubbly tan head that left some lacing. Aroma of rich sweet roasty malts, some dark fruits, hints of alcohol, cherry, vanilla, cappucino, chocolate and just a very complex nose. Flavor of sweet roasty malts, more vanilla, cherry, hints of hop bitterness, alcohol well hidden for the 9%. For sure one of the best Baltic Porters I have ever had. Very well done brew. bfeldmann (1050) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - DEC 28, 2006
Thank goodness ended on an great note thanks eagle. Poured a dark brown small head almost no lacing. Aroma was of dark fruits smoke and coffee some chocolate. Flavor mmmmmmmm. sweet chocolate that melt finished with the perfect amount of bitterness to it. GOOD beer. Goblincat (399) - Petersburg, Michigan, USA - DEC 27, 2006
Pours near black with a thin light brown head. The nose is chocolaty and malty. Sweet chocolate taste that dissolves into a light creamy bitterness. Qiute interesting, and nicely complex. LtJudge (468) - Muskego, Wisconsin, USA - DEC 25, 2006
Pours a dark brown color with a small head. Wonderful aromas of chocolate malts,coffee and dark fruits with hints of vanilla hit you right away. Wonderful silky flavors of chocolate and coffee and some rasins hit you mouth followed by some alcohol flavor. Did I mention that this stuff is unbelieveably smooth as silk?Wonderful stuff!