Category Archives: Porter

3 Fonteinen ‘Zwet.Be’ BA Porter


“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

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

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

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

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

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

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.


Badlands Brewery ‘Malekula’ Spiced Porter

56236317_1065968786920599_7712010716550529024_n“Malekula Dark is Badlands Easter Offering. A London Porter spiced with single origin Cocoa from the Vanuatuan island of Malekula & Daintree Rainforest Vanilla soaked in “Dead Mans Drop” a spiced rum from award winning Bathurst distiller Stone Pine. The porter is brewed with 7 malts and is enriched by the chocolate and spicy rum flavours – then smoothed and mellowed by the world’s strongest vanilla grown in the Australian tropics.”

Glassware: English pint.

Appearance: Cola coloured pour with a short tan head resting atop. Retention is quite good and so it works a healthy lace down the walls of the glass.

Aroma: With all of those wonderful ingredients on display we were hoping for a bit more vitality. We certainly get the cocoa…it’s absolutely divine. The vanilla is a little harder to locate but it is there. Our main gripe is the lack of spiced rum which is the ingredient we were most excited about! Picking up a subtle peaty note along with tobacco, fresh leather and beef jerky as it settles in.

Flavour: It opens with chocolate, lightly roasted malts, subtle vanilla and tobacco. A flutter of peat and ash here and there as it rounds out on a mild roast with chocolate, toasted nuts and vanilla on the rear.

Mouthfeel: A somewhat thin, metallic texture. Low AbV (4.9%) and mild-moderate body.

Overall: If this was advertised as a straight up London porter it would be superb but the feature flavours…specifically the spiced rum are muted and leave a lot to be desired. This bottle is quite old though so that could have something to do with it. Shame…could have been so much more.

Tumut River Brewing ‘Bounty Hunter’ Choc Coconut Porter

54419845_1056848724499272_4390768654661189632_n“Take a walk on the Dark Side with Bounty Hunter, our Choc Coconut Porter. It’s everything you’d expect – chocolatey, coconutty, dark, rich and full bodied. This is a surprisingly easy to drink beer that hits you with coconut and chocolate aromas from the minute you take that first sniff. Balanced with our fantastic Voyager malts and enough bitterness to keep it feeling like a beer. Take a walk on the dark side..”

Glassware: English pint.

Appearance: Deep cola pour with an ultra fizzy thumb of tan foam disappearing in front of our eyes. It fizzes away to a ring which provides no lace whatsoever.

Aroma: Very alluring. Definitely getting that wonderful fusion of chocolate and coconut lifting out of the glass. Behind that we’re finding much more traditional porter qualities like rich leather, subtle beef jerky, toast, dates, glazed cherry and vanilla. An all round lovely nose.

Flavour: Picking up some cherry notes on entry followed up by the delicious coconut, chocolate and vanilla. A very mild roast forms late in the piece giving rise to a hint of coffee then eventually landing on a toasty finish with coconut on the rear.

Mouthfeel: Thin but not watery. Somewhat metallic texture with the co2 spot on for a porter. Only 5.1% AbV so staying quite true there as well.

Overall: Without a doubt it’s TRBC’s best offering so far. It’s fun yet it still sticks to a pretty traditional porter recipe. Perfect for this fence-sitting Autumn weather!

Brew Mountains Brewery ‘Black Stuff’ Porter

52532784_1040907969426681_6305920225787248640_n“This full bodied twist on an English classic results in a creamy roasty-toasty Australian porter. The hop bitterness range is wide but well balanced and the grains strong and reassuringly present.”

Glassware: English pint.

Appearance: Dark brown with light cola hues. It produces a wispy overlay which gradually retreats to the rim. Laced well considering the lack of head.

Aroma: Almost like a sweet coffee and caramel syrup character initially. Reminds me of the caramel latte’s I used to drink when I was 18! Quite a strong mixed berry note to it as well – somewhat artificial at times and similar to blackcurrant roll ups and grape jubes. Very unique. Almost no typical porter qualities to it though.

Flavour: We’re struggling to work out where the beer is going. It’s sweet and fruity upfront, full of dark berries and forest fruits. It hits a very delicate roasty note midway which rolls in to a dry and toasty finish with subtle bittersweet chocolate on the rear.

Mouthfeel: Kind of creamy texture. Mild-moderate body with a hint of the 30 IBU coming through in the swallow.

Overall: After trying their pale, IPA and now the porter we can see a bit of a pattern with this artificial sweetness that persistently comes through. As a whole the brewery shows promise but the beers need some tweaking.

Dainton Brewery ‘Raspberry’ Rye Milk Porter

imageGlass: Poured into a shaker glass.

Appearance: Pours an impenetrable dark brown with red hues, leaving a 5mm tan head comprised a small tightly packed carbonation.

Aroma: Glorious raspberry, chocolate, hazelnut, coconut, roasted caramels, coffee, and some smoke. This is dessert beer.

Flavour: Interesting. We get initial sweet milk chocolate, and sweet but not sickly raspberry fruit on the palate. Slight citric tartness from the fruit. The nuttiness of the hazelnut glides hand in hand with a combo of roasted biscuity malt and very mild booze. We having a hard time detecting the rye as there is not a lot of grainy spice. In saying that there is a vanilla presence so this technically is a ‘spice’. The lactose sugar combines also without overpowering the overall ‘sweetness’ from all the ingredients.

Mouthfeel: carbonation is mild to moderate. Alcohol volume is 6% and it sits you have added a touch of booze to your raspberry desert tart. Length is decent and it leaves a silky sweet yet subdued tart film on your tongue. Body is only mild to moderate.

Overall: Really enjoyable porter. We love the addition of the raspberry. A tasty desert porter that you could easily consume after dinner.



The Alchemist ‘Pappy’s’ Porter

46118095_980866788764133_7950417895815643136_n“This dark mahogany ale has a great and delicious malt depth, yet is balanced with supple, energizing bitterness.”

Glassware: English pint.

Appearance: Very deep brown with a mountainous four finger head. Good retention with an absolute smattering of lace left on the glass.

Aroma: One whiff and we’re instantly reminded of our Beelzebub review last week! It has this distinct black IPA quality to it which is oh so American. Punchy pine resins, grapefruit and orange peel lift out with the roasty base of chocolate, charred malts, coffee and those slightly burned edges of a chocolate cake. There’s also a hint of dank weedy herbs in there too.

Flavour: If we didn’t know any better we’d say this was a solid black IPA. The way it hits the taste buds with a clean 50/50 ratio of hops to malts you wouldn’t think it was anything but! Sharp pine needle, pithy grapefruit and orange peel meet with slightly charred malts, dark chocolate and coffee upfront and are literally all still together when it finishes with a serious bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Dry and very bitter. Reasonably light on. Not much in the way of booze but it’s only 5% AbV so one could expect that.

Overall: We watched the 5 minute clip where John Kimmich summed up the beer. He states that he’s kept it traditional yet this is far from a traditional porter. Traditional in the sense of an American porter? Yes. English? No. That aside, it’s a bloody good black IPA oops! We mean porter 😉

Bottle Logic ‘The Lost Colony’ BA Imperial Porter – 2018 Release

41952217_953418091509003_7070920030816305152_n“Imperial porter brewed with pecans and walnuts, aged in rum and bourbon barrels with Madagascar vanilla, then finished with cacao nibs and toasted pecans.”

Glassware: Snifter.

Appearance: Black as midnight with a foamy head perched on top. Reduction is slow eventually settling to a ring which decorates the sides of the glass.

Aroma: Wooowwww. Magnificent display of the pecans and walnuts. The vanilla accent is introduced nicely with the somewhat sweet and sugary notes from the time spent in bourbon and rum barrels also coming through beautifully. The 13.2% AbV stings the olfactory’s but that can be excused considering its weight. Really lovely, all the aromas come together to create this overall aromatic sensation!

Flavour: Very well layered. As expected the rum and bourbon barrels present firmly, the warming alcohol is strong and the roasty/charred malts bring up the bottom end. The mid keeps firm, roasty and boozy with the nutty profile adding a subtle yet toasty and earthy quality. The finish is dry, assertive and warm with a hint of vanilla and booze offering good length.

Mouthfeel: Thick, muscly and very warming. Full bodied. The 13.2% AbV is quite intense…would benefit from some aging!

Overall: Although it does need to be laid down for a while there is still a wealth of flavour to be enjoyed now. With time that booze burn will soften and all of those delicious nutty, vanilla and chocolate flavours will open up.

Trillium Brewing ‘Pot & Kettle’ Oatmeal Porter w Chocolate

39018504_927990300718449_8388899503725346816_n“For this rendition of our signature porter, brewed with oats, we added a post-fermentation dose of chocolate. Inviting aromas of coffee milk, cacao nibs, and pudding are followed by a hazelnut heavy palate, strong notes of dark chocolate, and Pot & Kettle’s signature smooth mouthfeel. Opaque in appearance with a warm brown color.”

Glassware: English pint.

Appearance: Dark brown almost black with a thumb of loosely held foam on top. It quickly snaps back to the edges with little lace work on the glass.

Aroma: Nice and hearty, works well on this cool winters arvo. The two feature flavours present beautifully – the oatmeal with its somewhat savoury cereal grains and the chocolate that really comes through. It’s like an early 19th century winter brekky….porridge and hot chocolate! Subtle dark fruits, apricot, toasty/earthy malts and figs just coz they can!

Flavour: Displaying dark fruits initially, making way for the roasty malts, chocolate and apricot as it nears the mid. The oats are mild early on but they really start to take shape in the middle supported by carob, cocoa powder and gently roasted malts. Some biscuity/nutty malt pairs up with the chocolate to finish off.

Mouthfeel: Silky smooth, effortless and well rounded. Medium body with a nicely disguised 7.5% AbV. Dangerously drinkable!

Overall: A light yet full flavoured porter. It kind of goes through the motions starting with the oatmeal and chocolate to choc chip cookies and eventually revealing a distinct esrthy apricot as it hits took temperature. This USB our first crack at Trillium (besides the collab beers of course) and we’re very satisfied. As expected.

Holgate Brewhouse ‘Empress’ Imperial Mocha Porter

37931419_913351282182351_2903070121666805760_n“Big sister to our Temptress chocolate porter. Mature. Well built. An experienced mix of vanilla, dutch cocoa and locally roaster coffee beans. Not to be taken lightly. Go on. Get carried away.”

Glassware: English pint.

Appearance: Glossy black with a deep tan coloured head which swells to a finger in height. It gradually reduces to a ring with a wet lace drag in its wake.

Aroma: Very dynamic and loaded with coffee, cocoa and vanilla. It follows on with more typical porter attributes – dark fruits i.e blackcurrant, blood plums and cherry; chocolate, nutty malts and light roasty characters. A fair bit of sweetness creeping in as well, probably best described as Candi sugar, Dr pepper and toasted marshmallow. Very well layered nose.

Flavour: Akin to the aroma there’s a big rush of coffee, cocoa and vanilla on entry. Heady notes of booze (10%), sweet and sticky dark fruits and molasses in support. Picking up traces of the Candi sugar here and there as it rolls through the mid palate. Roasted malts and hop bitterness develop late and set up the rich, boozy and bitter finish which offers good endurance on the back end.

Mouthfeel: A little oily and prickly, medium-full body with a lively Co2 to lighten it up. Definitely feeling all of that 50 lBU in the swallow.

Overall: A solid brew. As most would already know this is the Temptresses bigger, meaner sister and boy does it show. It takes the best qualities of the Temptress and then amplifies them! A very worthy Imperial porter.

Stone & Wood 2018 ‘Stone Beer’ Wood Fired Porter

36650726_890640044453475_8538603986146557952_n“Each year under the night sky, we honour the ancient technique of our brewing ancestors with the ritual of adding wood fired stones to our kettle to caramelise the brew. Brewed for when the days are short and the nights are cold, our 2018 Stone Beer is a wood-fired porter. With aromas and flavours of roast barley, hints of coffee and dark chocolate, this winter release finishes with a firm bitterness. Stone Beer 2018 will be pouring through taps and available on shelves in venues across Australia from today onwards – Check ahead with your local watering hole to see if stock is available.”

Glassware: English pint.

Appearance: Very dark brown with faint cherry red edges. It only manages a finger of tan foam which settles to a filmy overlay. We see healthy lace work as it ebbs.

Aroma: Lovely traditional porter notes with a distinct cherry fruit sweetness fused through. Earthy malts, dark jammy fruits (fig, raisin, prunes etc), cocoa, almond and super subtle smoky/peaty notes buried deep. We wouldn’t go as far as saying it’s subdued but it takes a vigorous swirl to get a good nose-full.

Flavour: Showing a lot more vitality with dark chocolate, earthy malts, subtle smoke and mild espresso bitterness developing early in the mid. There’s this delicious underlying cherry sweetness that carries through in to the dry and toasty finish which offers additional notes of dark fruit, mild coffee and charred malts on the back end.

Mouthfeel: Slick and effortless. It holds a good weight which helps carry the 7.5% ABV. Moderate co2.

Overall: We see they’ve decided to drop from the stubby 500ml bottles to 330ml this year for some reason. That side of it is a bit disappointing but the beer itself is pretty damn good. Unfortunately we missed the 2017 release so we can’t compare it and although this is a fine offering for us nothing can top the 2016.

Dainton Cherry Wood Smoked Rye Baltic Porter


31234948_846202065563940_2344929779997736960_n“A dark smooth Porter that has been brewed and conditioned with a German lager strain to ensue a very gorgeous malt profile. Of course, that was only a part of the thinking when planning this beer! We wanted to impart a gentle yet bold smokiness to marry up with the dark fruit characteristics from the fermentation that can arise when using specialized dark crystal in the grist. The result is a wonderfully smooth and complex beer that will age well or drink like a chocolate cigar this winter.”
Glassware: Tulip.

Appearance: Impenetrable black with a fizzy brown head that swells to two fingers before it reduced to a ring. Minimal lace as we go.

Aroma: Quite a complex little number! We’re picking up everything from burned wood, ash, whisky and peat to peppery rye, licorice, coffee and dark chocolate. Burnt toast, vanilla, toffee and dried raisins just to add a bit more depth! That’s an impressive aroma right there.

Flavour: Excellent transition from the nose. Tonnes of woody smoke, ash, spicy dark fruits, treacle and burnt toast from the start through to the mid palate. It becomes rather dry with hints of cocoa, toasted grains and a stab of that 8.8% ABV tailing in late. Long, smoky and drawn out finish.

Mouthfeel: Nothing heavy. Dry, medium bodied with mild-moderate co2. The 8.8% ABV does show through at times.

Overall: A fairly good porter that shapes up. Very crafty as well which not only gives it its shelf appeal but offers a high level of intrigue. The question is does it follow through? Well….it does and it doesn’t. It’s certainly fun though.

Garage Project ‘Cockswain’s Courage’ BA Porter

30594518_840039229513557_6139394147468967936_n“Tastes Like War”. Slogging up and down the mounts of Venus really takes it out of a chap. After a long day at it, his Lordship needs a special something to steady the legs. Brewed to his own special requirements, Lord Cockswain’s Double Barrel Blend is a judicious blend of freshly brewed Courage, and our brewery ‘stock’, aged for over 12 months in oak bourbon barrels. Combining the rich licorice, raisin and vanilla character of aged porter, with a lively sparkle and chocolate character of freshly brewed beer, the result is complex, powerful and deceptively drinkable. Just the way his lordship likes it.”

Glassware: Tulip.

Appearance: Black with an inch of tan foam emerging on top. The head retains quite well and weaves a wavy lace pattern as we imbibe.

Aroma: Holy moly she certainly reveals those 18 months in bourbon barrels with big upfront notes of bourbon, vanilla, licorice, chocolate, oak chips, fortified wine, glazed cherry and a flutter of coffee. Seriously complex and ever evolving. Absolutely superb.

Flavour: Oh my goodness. It comes on vigorously with bourbon, alcohol, oak, vanilla and dark fruits. We can’t ignore this somewhat prominent cherry flavour which really develops midway. It morphs in to a raisin-y note that rolls in to this super complex, oaky and boozy finish which offers some dryness on the rear.

Mouthfeel: Rich, dense and warming – that 12.8% ABV is struggling to hide its weight. Mild co2 with full body.

Overall: Impressive! It has this KBS quality to it which we really like. But it’s the addition of this cherry-esque sweetness that gives the beer its unique edge. Kudos GP that’s an absolute corker. P.S would age well!

Drake’s Brewing Co ‘Robusto’ Porter

29594543_833056053545208_9185886103802901137_n“Drake’s Black Robusto is a deep, dark “Robust Porter,” a beer style known for being darker, fuller-bodied, and stronger than a standard Brown Porter. Each pint goes down smoothly with flavors of bittersweet chocolate and slight roast from Crystal and Chocolate malt. A touch of spicy, herbal hop character from Willamette hops balance out the finish. Enjoy a pint, and now a bottle, with dark lingering satisfaction.”

Glassware: Tulip.

Appearance: Black with soft brown tints around the edges. It forms a huge four finger head that gradually settles to a thick overlay. A thick smattering of lace is left clinging to the glass as we imbibe.

Aroma: Big, roasty and dark with a delicate emphasis on this cold drip coffee note. Lovely dark chocolate, molasses, roasted malts, liquorice, woody spice, vanilla, tobacco and some light floral hop notes on the flank. We won’t go as far as to say that it’s complex but it’s certainly well layered.

Flavour: She comes on quite creamy with chocolate, cocoa, vanilla, liquorice and roasted malts in support. A touch of boozy warmth marries up with a mild hop bitterness in the middle. It continues with a light coffee roast, chocolate and toasty malt that finishes dry and rather bitter.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and somewhat frothy which is surely in part due to the lifted co2. Medium body with the 6.3% ABV kept at bay.

Overall: Not bad. To be honest we don’t understand how it has scored so well on RateBeer. Yes it’s a tasty porter but there’s many more that would beat it.

10 Toes Brewery ‘VP’ Vanilla Porter

28795717_823646241152856_5615080139294507008_n“Rich complex & creamy. Aged on mountains of whole vanilla beans, this seductive robust milk porter is softly carbonated and rich in characteristics of chocolate, coffee and Bourbon Oak Vanilla.”

Glassware: Tulip.

Appearance: Dark cola pour revealing some faint mahogany edges when held to the light. Just a finger of head which vanishes almost immediately.

Aroma: Rich and complex. Really has an intense vanilla lifting out, tonnes of charred oak character, tobacco, licorice, black coffee, milk sugars, dark chocolate and toasty malt. Also getting a lovely toffee sweetness with just a hint of nutty malt. Brilliant.

Flavour: It comes on smooth and velvety with the vanilla easing and allowing all those other decadent flavours to come through. Coffee, dark chocolate, charred malt and milk sugars carry across the mid and finish with a delicate hop bitterness in the tail.

Mouthfeel: Creamy texture, smooth and velvety with lifted co2. Medium body. Hides the 5.8% ABV rather well.

Overall: A delicious and well structured beer. Full flavoured but still somewhat light and pleasant to quaff on. Solid porter.