Category Archives: Porter

Hawkers 2021 Brandy BA Baltic Porter

Rating:

“Well rested in barrels that previously aged brandy, this Baltic Porter is as refined as it is monstrous. Characters of fruit cake and plush chocolate lend a softer side to the bold, abyssal beast beneath.  Drink now or cellar for another day—the choice is entirely yours, however there’s nothing like having one now and cellaring a second one for later.”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: Glossy black with a finger of tan foam forming on top. Steady reduction with a wet lace being dragged down the glass.

Aroma: We must admit we don’t see many Aussie breweries opting for the Brandy barrel option. It’s not a spirit that we’re totally fond of but for this expression it displays sweet and spicy notes of ginger bread, chai tea and mulled cider. Once again we’re seeing the same issues that plagued the unflavoured BBA series which is the base Baltic Porter notes are super subtle and aren’t reallyfusing with with the flavour of the Brandy barrels particularly well.

Flavour: Wow, full marks for overall smoothness but in a sense it’s also its downfall. There’s zero roasted characters – which we’d come to expect from the style – minimal chocolate, coffee and nutty qualities as well. Fleeting hints of chai spice, gingerbread, dark fruits, toffee and port before she settles on a kinda sweet and spicy finish.

Mouthfeel: Pretty light on to be honest. Not a whole lot of grip but a slightly lifted Co2 helps. Medium body. The 11.7% ABV is very well buried though.

Overall: This is just plain old average from Hawkers. The aroma only just passes muster but from there it went downhill. It’s lacking balance, intensity and cohesion. By the end it was a boozy, watery mess. Very ordinary.

Amager Bryghus ‘Baby Wombat From Hell’ Old School Porter

Rating:

“An old-school English Porter brewed with 5 different malts and full of chocolate tones. No wombats were harmed in the making of this beer.”

Glassware: English Pint.

Appearance: Uber dark brown, bordering on black with a faint ray of light cutting through at the base of the glass. It forms a thumb of light brown foam which slowly peels off but manages a sexy cascading lace as it ebbs.

Aroma: Boom! This is what a real Porter should smell like. A huge roasted base providing the crucial formwork for the rich dark chocolate, espresso, light smoky notes, ash, cocoa, vanilla, licorice and earthy hops to work off. This beast literally gives meaning to the phrase “all Stouts are types of Porter but not all Porters are Stouts”. Dead set it’s the best Porter we’ve smelt all year.

Flavour: We already knew from the quality of the aroma that it would follow through. Immediately we get that slightly aggressive roasted bitterness which literally reaches all the way into the finish. Everything from espresso coffee, dark chocolate, ash and smoke to treacle, toffee, vanilla and dark fruits in abundance. Then it all converges in an extremely big and complex finish which goes for days.

Mouthfeel: Perfect. Literally perfect. It holds a nice weight with a temperate Co2. Medium body. The 6% ABV is incredibly well hidden.

Overall: We’re absolutely loving this. From the hilarious description on the can to the awesome artwork but most importantly the contents. This is the epitome of an old school Porter. Hot damn it’s good to see Amager back on our shores, we’ve been long time fan boys of this brewery!

Bracket Brewing ‘Baraka’ Coffee Porter

Rating:

“We love coffee, arguably more than beer (controversial we know!). So when the opportunity arose to collaborate with Redfern roastery, @seventhwave_coffee , who is doing something a bit special, we jumped at it. For our first coffee collab, hopefully of many, we brewed a Porter with a smooth roast profile and added Seventhwave’s signature seasonal blend, Baraka, which uses Ethiopia as the base pushing a soft acidity, stone-fruit, blueberry & chocolate.”

Glassware: English Pint.

Appearance: Pours as black as midnight with a big and finely beaded three finger head. Excellent retention and lacing as we imbibe.

Aroma: Absolutely loving the intense coffee lifting out of the glass. It’s got that raw bean quality to it and it’s bursting with nutty, chocolate and almost floral accents. There’s a beautiful roast emanating off it too which lends itself to a bit of dark chocolate, vanilla bean, sweet dark fruits and berries, toffee and a super subtle hint of pithy bitterness. Really liking where this is going.

Flavour: The coffee hits the taste buds with a substantial calibre. Yet it’s still so perfectly in sync with everything else – the delicate creamy vanilla, the milkshake-like cocoa, the subtle dark fruits and berries, even the the bitterness kicks in and does its part for the team. Nutty and lightly roasted malts then set up for a rather dry, roasty and bitter finish which lingers.

Mouthfeel: Nice and creamy, a bit of dryness developing in the swallow. Medium bodied, low-ish Co2. The 6.5% ABV is well positioned.

Overall: Another notable offering from these new kids on the block. Hazy’s ✔️ dark beers ✔️ now we’re keen to see how their Lagers and Sours stack up. We’re quietly confident.

Stone & Wood ‘2021 Stone Beer’ Wood Fired Porter

Rating:

“In homage to brewing history, 2021 Stone Beer was brewed using wood fired stones and focuses on high quality Australian craft malts and barrel aging techniques. Pouring dark brown, Stone Beer starts with a rich and chocolatey aroma followed by coffee, dark chocolate and biscuity flavours that envelop the palate before a firm bitter finish. Perfect for cold winter nights, our wood fired porter was made for moments by the fire with friends, beer in hand and tales unfolding.”

Glassware: English Pint.

Appearance: Dark brown pour with trickles of light creeping through around the edges. It produces a short tan head which gradually recedes. A gorgeous cascading lace trails it down.

Aroma: Not getting a great deal off the nose to be honest. The dominant scent would have to be the gamey smoked ham hock quality which is really delightful to take in. It throws out similar scents of salami and beef jerky but behind it is a subtle touch of smoked malt, lightly charred wood, burnt espresso, dark chocolate, roasted almond and molasses. The most delicate of sweet malts also opening up as it settles.

Flavour: Ok this is where it’s all at! It kicks off with an incredible roasty and charred malt character which incorporates dark chocolate, coffee and this certain woody/smoky note which infuses really well. Loving the delicate touch of milky chocolate around the mid which is quickly overtaken by smoked ham hock, burnt espresso and charred malts to finish.

Mouthfeel: Pretty smooth and palate-friendly actually. On the flipside it’s probably a tad too light on. The 6.4% ABV is very well hidden though.

Overall: Once again this wood fired Porter does the right things but doesn’t really blow us away. We’d love to see this beer progress in certain ways. In saying that their barrel aged version is always a ripper…if one can get their hands on it! Anywho, solid but nothing memorable.

Mikkeller ‘Tweaker’ Coffee Porter

Rating:

“A slightly strong Kaffeporter made with coffee from danish master roasters La Cabra Coffee.”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: Pitch black which is always a good sign for a Porter. It forms a frothy two finger head which is retained well. What is best described as ‘sexy’ lacing coats the glass as it ebbs.

Aroma: It’s got that sweet coffee scent in spades…like raw coffee bean but mixed with milk powder/sugar. As it settles the formwork comes in to play; licorice, dark chocolate, plums/cherry, salted caramel, musk and marshmallow. It’s funny coz it really pulls back on the coffee intensity once the other aromas are detected. But then again, technically, that’s just good balance.

Flavour: The coffee is certainly noticeable but it seems sweetened by a hit of brown sugar or caramelised malt. This is in no way a criticism, it’s actually delicious. The mid is where the coffee gets to do its thing, really showing the true earthy, nutty and smoky qualities before it finishes bitter and roasty with excellent length.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, slick and a little oily. Some heat to it (8% ABV). Low-ish Co2. A little light on but we can forgive considering it’s a Porter.

Overall: Yeah it wasn’t the big coffee bomb we were after but it still ticks a few boxes. There was a slightly unappealing bitterness and the booze showed through a a bit too much. In the end it wasn’t a bad drop though.

Tiny Rebel ‘Stay Puft’ Mint Choc Marshmallow Porter

Rating:

“Imperial Stay Puft and a load of after-dinner chocolates.”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: As black as midnight. It produces a small brown head which quickly fades. It still manages a decent set of rings as it ebbs.Aroma: Holy moly…the mint chocolate side of things is lifting off. It literally smells like a glass of liquefied after dinner mints. Dark chocolate and mint, dark chocolate and mint, dark chocolate and mint, dark chocolate and mint and….oh dark chocolate and mint! Seriously though, it may only be a two trick pony but those two tricks are freaking amazing!

Flavour: Getting a bit more depth here which is excellent. Obviously the mint and dark chocolate rush to the front but it’s those subtle hints of vanilla, marshmallow, peppermint and biscuits that hand it the much needed body it possesses. It doesn’t really vary a whole lot…the only other useful correlation we can make is that it tastes like a liquid mint slice….with a bit of booze!

Mouthfeel: Creamy, aerated, medium body. Mild-moderate Co2. Tell ya what the 9% ABV is incredibly well concealed.

Overall: It’s been a long time between drinks for us and Tiny Rebel. This crafty variation of “Stay Puft” has us very interested too. Honestly the resemblance between this and a mint slice is freakish. Love it!

50/50 Brewing ‘Donner Party’ Porter

Rating:

“Sustenance to get you through those long, cold winters, the Donner Party Porter is another of FiftyFifty’s flagship beers. Reminiscent of dark chocolate, espresso, and dark dried fruits with a long complex finish, this beer is good for one of those nights where you’ve dug yourself into a snow bank because the ski trip didn’t go quite as planned.”

Glassware: American Pint.

Appearance: Super dark cola pour with a thin tan head on top. It quickly retreats to the rim and struggles to produce much lacing.

Aroma: Roasty and slightly metallic with a good helping of cocoa, molasses, bakers chocolate, toffee, burnt toast and subtle dark fruit sweetness i.e blood plum, fig and dates. Also picking up a touch of toasted coconut, camp fire, espresso and earthy, herbal and mildly floral hops. Could be wrong but we’re also getting a flutter of estery yeast too. Solid!

Flavour: Right on the money. Stripped back, traditional Porter notes on display with its delicious roast, bittersweet chocolate, coffee and dark fruits. Again, picking up the slightly herbal and floral hop profile. Gets real roasty and charred as it surges in to a bittersweet finish full of chocolate, cocoa and molasses.

Mouthfeel: Excellent weight…full-ish and nicely sustained Co2, bitterness, ABV, all of it.. dead set spot on.

Overall: A bloody ripper of a Porter from this highly distinguished brewery. Traditional in a sense but so nicely crafted at the same time. Two thumbs up from us.

Woolshed Brewery Scorched Almond Porter

Rating:

“Woolshed Brewery and Almondco are celebrating Almondco’s 75th year, with this one off specialty brew just for thr occasion. Almondco roast crushed almonds, brewed with organic cacao nibs, chocolate malt and lactose, for a creamy, roast choc nut beer experience!”

Glassware: English Pint.

Appearance: Kind of a deep garnet with light mahogany hues…not dark enough for a Porter. A finger of lightly tanned foam falls away and forms a halo. Nice wavy lace as it ebbs.

Aroma: Beautiful fusion of toasted almonds flowing through the somewhat lighter than expected Porter characteristics. We’re detecting a gentle roast, milky coffee and chocolate, caramel, mixed nuts and honey/maple. Slightly underwhelming.. it could actually pass as an Amber Ale.

Flavour: A bit of a watered down mess. The front palate hardly offers anything of note until it hits the nutty and sweet caramels early in the mid. Only then does it open up, albeit, conservatively. Dry nutty roast, milk chocolate, earthy hops and cocoa does linger nicely on the back palate.

Mouthfeel: Too thin and slippery for the style. We’d be happy to overlook but it’s hard to ignore here. Low-ish Co2. 5% ABV is too tame.

Overall: Very pedestrian stuff from a highly regarded brewery in our opinion. It’s just lacking everything you’d expect from an adjunct flavoured Porter. Yeah the nutty-ness is there but there’s no depth or structure behind it.

Bright Brewery ‘Off The Wagon Wheel’ Chocolate Porter

Rating:

Off The Wagon Wheel pays homage to the beloved chocolatey/ marshmallowy after-school snack that most Aussie kids were raised on. The iconic flavours of the Wagon Wheel are recreated with chocolate malt, vanilla beans, coconut flakes and fresh raspberry puree.”

Glassware: Tulip.

Appearance: Dark mahogany with a finger of fizzy tan head assembling on top. It quickly recedes but still manages a lovely cascading lace down the glass.

Aroma: Wow the resemblance to an actual Wagon Wheel is pretty spot on. Lots of milk chocolate, raspberry puree, creamy vanilla, coconut, cereal grains, profiteroles, biscuity malt and even a cheeky hint of creaming soda. Oh man we could literally take this aroma in all day. Superb.

Flavour: Juuuust lacks a bit of intensity. All of the delicious Wagon Wheel flavours are here though; raspberry puree, milk chocolate, creamy vanilla, coconut and biscuity malts. It is a bit of a one trick pony though and this can sometimes be the downside with these novelty beers…if there’s no back up flavours it can be a little one dimensional.

Mouthfeel: A little thin and at times watery. There’s a vibrant Co2 which gives it a much needed lift though. Mild-medium body. 5.8% ABV neither here nor there.

Overall: It started really strong but gradually the faults started to show up. As we said it’s a bit one dimensional which is a shame. We still rate Bright as a really good Aussie brewery though.

Mountain Goat ‘Rare Breed’ BA Blended Porter

Rating:

“The cold winter nights have arrived and so has our new Rare Breed Barrel Aged Blended Porter! Aged in rum barrels, this porter is rich and full-bodied, with deep malt aromas, and delicious chocolate and rum flavours.”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: Black with very faint deep ruby red breaking through at the foot of the glass. It forms a big three finger head which holds up. Excellent lacing as it ebbs.

Aroma: To be honest we weren’t quite sure what to expect but expect a nose full of slightly sweet and spicy rum, dark fruits i.e raisin/dates/cherry, chocolate, subtle oak, cola, hints of vanilla and lightly burnt caramel and toffee. Nicely poised yet with good depth and complexity.

Flavour: Interesting. It’s a real tussle between the traditional Porter notes and the rum barrels. The upside to this is the superb balance they’ve struck. Beautifully fused flavours of chocolate, coffee, spiced rum, caramel, oak, vanilla and dark fruits with a nice toasty finish.

Mouthfeel: The only thing letting it down is the slightly lean texture. Although they’ve hidden the 9% ABV well. Plus the Co2 is spot on.

Overall: It’s strongest attribute is the dangerous drinkability…it’s so smooth and palatable for its size. The weakness is the thin-ish texture and lack of oomph. Jeez we’re hard to please! 😉

Dad & Dave’s ‘#0’ Oak & Whisky Porter

Rating:

“Our Oak & Whisky Porter has been cellared 2 and a half years to deliver a smooth velvety porter rich in chocolate and caramel notes. Fermented on fresh french oak and a touch of whiskey to promote subtle flavours and aromas of vanilla.”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: Black with some faint light cutting through around the edges. Massive four finger head which takes an age to recede. Tonnes of lace as it ebbs.

Aroma: We can smell the whiskey as it sits idle on the table. Behind it are magnificent wafts of molasses, licorice, oak, dark chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, vanilla and slightly tart dark fruits. A hint of cocoa and earthy char also creeping in as it warms. Solid.

Flavour: Again, the whiskey component hits the taste buds first, quickly followed by chocolate, oak, licorice, coffee and molasses. A flutter of vanilla sweetness and ever so slightly tart dark fruits lead in to a nice roasty finish with lingering coffee, roasted malts and oak on the back end.

Mouthfeel: Probably a tad too thin but we’ll cop it as it is a Porter. Super smooth, oily, hides the 8% ABV pretty damn well. Mild-medium Co2.

Overall: Believe it or not this is our first crack at Dad and Dave’s. We’ve been aware of them for years but never made the commitment. Glad we did with this one…it’s respectable.

2 Brothers ‘Why Is The Rum Gone’ BA Porter

Rating:

“Barrel Aged, Tahitian Vanilla, Coconut Rum Porter.”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: Black with two fingers of lightly tanned foam perched on top. Steady reduction, eventually settling to a fine film with healthy lace work on the glass.

Aroma: Straight off the bat something is off here. We can pick up the subtle wafts of vanilla, coconut and rum but they’re totally clashing with this unpleasant freshly cut pear/green apple character. It screams acetaldehyde infection. It’s a real shame coz this had real potential.

Flavour: Thankfully the green apple/pear subsides. We’re tasting the lovely vanilla and coconut, rum and dark spice with a delicate touch of dark fruit and lightly roasted malts. There is a short cameo of acetaldehyde but it finishes relatively sweet and rummy with lingering coconut and vanilla on the rear.

Mouthfeel: A tad too lean for our liking. Slippery texture but the 8.8% ABV is nicely positioned. Mild-medium body.

Overall: Not the best rum Porter we’ve had. Obviously the issues with acetaldehyde (which is our guess) doesn’t do it any favours but the glimpses of sweet vanilla, coconut and rum kinda make up for it. All up it’s pretty average though.

Stone & Wood ‘2020 Vintage Stone Beer’ Smoked Porter

Rating:

“This year, in a nod to our roots, Stone Beer 2020 is the first brewed with all-Australian malts, including a Red Gum-smoked malt that adds a subtle smokiness to the brew’s roasted barley, coffee and dark chocolate flavours. A delicious wood fired dark porter with a firm bitter finish, Stone Beer 2020 is best paired with campfires, fresh air and cold starry nights.”

Glassware: English Pint.

Appearance: Dark brown with some faint light penetrating around the edges. It forms a thumb of tanned foam which gradually peels off. Some broken wavy lace sticks as we imbibe.

Aroma: Wow she’s much smokier than all previous releases. It’s almost got a bit of a smoked ham hock vibe going on. Lots of support from earthy roasted malts, wood, cacao, toasted almond, baker’s chocolate, figs and tobacco. As it warms the latter turns more ashy and the base smoky-ness really develops. Every year this beer gets better and better.

Flavour: That smoky quality transfers on to the palate beautifully, bringing a delicious roast, mild espresso, dark chocolate, roasted nuts and earthy tobacco. It doesn’t budge either…the dominant roasty and smoky notes carry nicely in to the robust finish and lingers for days.

Mouthfeel: Good weight to it. Medium-full body, muscly texture. Some dryness post swallow. 6.6% ABV – well concealed.

Overall: Another cracking vintage of the Stone Beer. Loving the lifted smoky character too…at first we were a bit unsure but they managed to keep it complex yet well balanced. Diggin it.

3 Fonteinen ‘Zwet.Be’ BA Porter

Rating:

“A dark porter-like beer from 3 fonteinen, brewed with Lambic yeast.”

Glassware: Stemmed tulip.

Appearance: Glossy black with a finger of brown head emerging on top. It holds up well and works a webbed lace down the sides of the glass.

Aroma: Here we are thinking 3F, one of the best Lambic breweries in the world, this will be sour AF…nope! It’s nice and meaty with good helpings of roasted malt, chocolate, dark fruits and toasty/woody elements. Undertones of coffee, vanilla, toasted almonds, cola lollies and a hint of farmyard funk. There’s a very minimal trace of tart acidity in this albeit very delicate. Phenomenal!

Flavour: The Lambic comes through just a little bit more. Tart fruits like cherry and blueberry, subtle lemon and vinegar are quickly encapsulated by chocolate, coffee, toast, woody oak, earthy licorice and cocoa. Nice little roasty-ness through the mid leading in to more chocolate, coffee and toast in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Quite light on. A little thin but it’s saved by the massive flavour profile. Mild-moderate body and Co2. 7%?! Where the hell have they hidden that?

Overall: Totally out of the left field for 3F, we had no idea they had a beer like this in their repertoire. Just goes to the show the expertise of the brewers. Solid drop.

Smog City Coffee Porter

Rating:
87371116_1323499254500883_3034032728312905728_o“Easily described as a COFFEE beer rather than a beer with coffee. This robust porter is aged on freshly roasted, freshly ground, organic Groundwork® coffee which enhances the flavors of chocolate, roasted malt, and of course coffee, already present in the beer.”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: Black with faint dark red edges. A thumb of brown head rests on top but it quickly disappears and manages a blotchy lace trail in its wake.

Aroma: One sniff and it sends the eyeballs rolling! This one is interesting though…we find most coffee Porter’s (or Stouts for that matter) have either a sweet or bitter coffee profile. This one has a bit of both. Then there is this aggressive roast component which hands the nose big notes of burnt wood, ash, charred malt, licorice and 100% dark chocolate. That is one fierce smelling coffee Porter.

Flavour: Interesting. In the way that the coffee somehow drops off a bit but is easily replaced by the heady roast and char characters. There is still a fair amount of coffee here though – coming through from a bit of a raw bean angle if anything. It doesn’t really sway far off this line as it finishes nice and roasty with raw coffee and char on the back end.

Mouthfeel: A little bit lighter than we’d prefer but then again it is a Porter so it’s naturally going to be a bit more approachable. Low-ish Co2, well placed 6% ABV. Not bad.

Overall: Not an overly memorable coffee Porter but in saying that it’s got some real strong points…the aroma being one of them. We remember visiting this brewery and being super impressed by the sours. Shame the dark beers don’t offer the same calibre.

Cigar City BA Imperial Milk Porter

Rating:
68454769_1150158711834939_8298541191478116352_n“So, what you’ve got here is a high gravity porter brewed with lactose. It tastes like “finding a $20 bill in your coat pocket” complemented by notes of “catching a foul ball at a baseball game,” while the finish is pure “that satisfying feeling of popping bubble wrap.” It’s good.”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: Solid black with a thumb of loosely held tan foam resting atop. Gradual reduction before it settles at the rim. Laced pretty well actually.

Aroma: We can smell it as it sits idle on the table! A good swirl arouses a plethora of rich and dark aromas like molasses, melted dark chocolate, coffee, vanilla, lactose, whisky, charred oak barrels, toasted coconut and earthy spice. The overall depth and complexity here is next level. Superb!

Flavour: Holy moly…it bursts on to the palate with incredibly rich yet smooth and dark malts, chocolate, coffee, vanilla and cocoa which rolls in to the oaky and whiskey-infused barrels. All the while that sweet and slightly sugary lactose character underlines it all. Definitely picking up hints of molasses before it wraps up with an enduring lactose sweetness.

Mouthfeel: So smooth and silky…hides the 8.5% ABV nicely. There’s a good density to it but it still feels light and accommodating.

Overall: Superior stuff really. Everything just fits together so well…the barrels, the lactose, the high ABV, even the rich molasses. It’s all so perfectly composed. Brewing at its finest.

Stone & Wood Limited Release Barrel Aged Stone Beer

Rating:
66463378_1128470284003782_6211507352743444480_n“In May 2017, we squirrelled some of our Stone Beer into a handful of whiskey  & port barrels to age…After 12 months of soaking up the woody goodness, our team have pulled the corks on the barrels and filled our signature Stone & Wood ceramic crocks as well as a few sneaky kegs to ship to a handful of lucky venues.”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: Dense black with a sturdy thumb of tan foam resting on top. It retreats to the rim and leaves a cascading lace down the glass.

Aroma: Not as vigorous as we’d hoped but still plenty of character. Lightly charred malts, mild smoky notes, chocolate, toasted nuts, cherry, tobacco, licorice, treacle and a subtle dash of vanilla sweetness to pull it all in to line. We already love the stone beer but the barrel aging has handed it more of a sweet and smoky character which is sensational!

Flavour: Much like the aroma in the sense that it doesn’t really come on with much ferocity but it still manages a swathe of flavour…mostly charred and toasty backed up by warming notes of whisky and booze. Some bitterness getting amongst it – coffee and ash – leading in to a dry and roasty finish.

Mouthfeel: Rather light on for a barrel aged porter. Co2 is lifted and it conjures up a little bitterness from somewhere. 8.8% AbV showing through at times. Bit of a mixed bag really.

Overall: Although it seemed to lack intensity at times there is more than enough here to sink our teeth in to. We’ve gotta pay homage to this awesome ceramic crock too…this is going to slot in nicely on our honours shelf.

Bacchus Brewing ‘Salted Caramel’ Imperial Porter

Rating:
CF9CDC4B-5584-4CBD-A9BE-E2C3AE66E756Glassware: Poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Lovely mahogany/deep ruby coloured body with a bubbly tan coloured 10mm head that fizzes out after 10-15seconds showing a high degree of carbonation that almost tries to form another head but it just swirls around. Interestingly, there is a faintly detected slick on the top of the brew where the head isn’t. We note that this brew was bottled only 2 days ago! This may explain the carbonation. It’s almost too carbonated.

Aroma: Full sweet caramels, almost butterscotch like, with molasses, mild chocolates and a velvety, almost lactose nose. Has a bit of liquor like heat to it.

Flavour: The toffee/butterscotch like sweetness mixes with a slightly briny finish, hence salted caramel. We get a lot of booze heat, sitting with more molasses, and a touch of vegemite like yeast. Roasted malts give it that slightly ash like character.

Mouthfeel: We thinking due to recent bottling, this brew would do wonderfully opened and left to breathe for a bit to ease of the booze.. it is 8.9% alc vol. The bitterness cuts in and leaves a nice finish on the palate, alongside a creaminess or oiliness on the lips. Has great length due to the sweetness and saltiness that matches beautifully. Carbonation dies off 2/3rds way through. Medium and full bodied given the imperial nature.

Overall: So rich and aromatic, yet sweet and velvety in the mouth. This bottle was a bit boozy but we know that it’s likely that it’s due to it being bottled literally 2 days ago. Give it a bit breathe and enjoy the desert like qualities it has.

SixPoint Brewery ‘Barrel Aged 4 Beans’ BA Imperial Porter

Rating:
60392435_1091907970993347_5856129565260251136_n“Deep in the rainforests of Madagascar lies one of the most coveted spices ever discovered: the decadent, aromatic, vanilla bean. In 4BEANS, a rich brew of beans and barley—a special blend of liquid aged in rye whiskey and bourbon barrels— meets Madagascar Vanilla to fuse Baltic myth and treasured spice. 4Beans has returned!”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: Dense black with a puffy two finger head which retreats to the rim. We’re seeing a tonne of lace strewn about the glass.

Aroma: Robust and hearty. Centred around the magnificent Madagascar vanilla which produces these unreal scents of creamy musk and white florals. Behind it we get cocoa, milk chocolate, coffee, woody oak, cinnamon, dried coconut and subtle peppery rye. This is divine!

Flavour: It’s amazing how complex it is yet all the flavours are so well defined. Upfront it’s all vanilla, coffee, cocoa, chocolate and woody oak with the spicy rye being introduced midway. The roasty component definitely tacking on as well. It dries up late in the piece and finishes on a sweet yet roasty number which really goes the distance.

Mouthfeel: Oily and silky smooth which is nuts considering the hefty AbV (11%). It’s surprisingly approachable which adds to its dangerous drink-ability.

Overall: The thing we love most about this is how much it resembles our beloved KBS. Obviously without the rich stout qualities and the Kentucky bourbon of course! Forget the standard 4 Beans this barrel aged version is phenomenal!

Modus Operandi ‘Born To Rum’ Chocolate Porter

Rating:
60434215_1087842861399858_6271556948366196736_n“Modus’ Good Beer Week Beer for 2019, Born To Rum is a deep dark porter, brewed with Chocolate, lactose, toasted coconuts, five types of malt and you guessed it rum. Tramps like us, baby we were born to rum.”

Glassware: English pint.

Appearance: Glossy black with two and a half fingers of puffy light brown foam perched on top. Good retention and healthy lace trails as it ebbs.

Aroma: Initially we weren’t that crash hot on it but once it comes up closer to room temp it really flourishes…lots of vanilla, coconut and lactose sweetness which have been nicely balanced by the spicy and bourbon-esque rum characters. There is a delicate roasted note here too but it’s quite subtle…it’s all about those feature ingredients.

Flavour: Certainly more robust. The traditional toasted malt notes are much more pronounced with the vanilla and coconut sweetness playing 2nd fiddle. We can still pick up hints of the spicy rum as a surprising hop bitterness kicks in to gear late in the piece. It finishes dry, roasty and slightly bitter with good length on offer.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and well rounded with a bitter drying finish. Medium body, mild-moderate co2.

Overall: To be honest we would have preferred a little less bitterness but hey we’re not going to nitpick. It’s a pretty decent offering.