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Brewery: Stone Brewing Company
City – State- Country: Escondido, Ca USA
Style: Smoked Porter
Release/Date: June 2012 release in 12 ounce bottles
Purchased: Save On Tobacco & Beverage (Mentor, Ohio)
Reviewed By: Morey
INFORMATION: Here’s what Stone’s website has to say about this beer……”Stone Smoked Porter w/ Vanilla Bean was the brainchild of Small Batch Brewer Laura Ulrich, who had a stroke of genius after trying Stone Smoked Porter poured over a couple scoops of vanilla ice cream. The complex flavor of Madagascar vanilla beans melds perfectly with the chocolatey, malty, coffee-like character of the beer, making it almost like a liquid dessert, but without an overbearing sweetness.”
APPEARANCE: Pours dark brown in color with ruby-red highlights when held up to the light. There’s a good finger of beige colored head after a medium pour. Pretty good head retention following each sip, resulting in some pretty good lacing too.
AROMA: Smoked Malts, Vanilla Extract, Charred Wood, Dark Chocolate, & Coffee.
TASTE: There’s a nice chocolate flavor up front, but the smoked malts aren’t far behind. The vanilla starts to come through pretty quick as well, providing an interesting shift in flavor. As the vanilla starts to fade, I’m getting the chocolate flavor again towards the back-end. The finish is relatively smooth with some lingering roasted flavor, as well as some subtle smokiness.
MOUTHFEEL: Medium bodied with an almost powder-like texture on the palate. The carbonation is on the low side.
MOREY’S BOTTOM LINE: The vanilla beans are a nice addition to an already flavorful beer. I’m not a huge fan of smoked porters (though I do enjoy them) and in my opinion, this rendition is an improvement upon the base beer. I haven’t had the chipotle version yet, but if it’s as good as this one, I’m looking forward to it! Cheers.
Score: 4 out of 5