Pilot Rock Porter - Caldera Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Pilot Rock PorterPilot Rock Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

36 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 36
Hads: 118
Avg: 3.85
pDev: 18.18%
Wants: 2
Gots: 17 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Caldera Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 11-18-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 36 | Hads: 118
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Canned on 12/3/13.

Pours an opaque super dark brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, toasted nut, and cocoa aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa, coffee, and nut flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roast bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with nice roasted malt and toasted nut qualities all around.

Serving type: can.

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Photo of nmann08
3.56/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From a can, pours a dark cola brown with a light tan head.

The nose is roasted malt, chocolate, caramel, just a faint hint of coffee. The flavor is mostly dark malt, chocolate, a little burnt coffee. The finish has a hop bitterness to it, a bit thin. Overall, this is very basic and non-offensive. A good beer.

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Photo of russpowell
4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours an effervescent chestnut/mahogany with a thumb of tan head. Above average head retention & lacing

S: Coffee, roastyness in copious amounts

T: Coffee, roastyness, a little bit cocoa up front. Coffee, roastyness, woody hops & just a little mocha as this warms. Finishes dry, roasty, a little sweet

MF: Medium bodied, firm carbonation, nicely balanced

A well put together porter with some serious coffee undertones to it. Not sure why it's so flipping expensive though. Over $ 12 a sixer. A very pleasant surprise

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Photo of chinchill
3.92/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz can.

Aroma: Exceptionally rich and strong dark roasted malts; lightly spicy.

Flavor: l;ess intense than the aroma. Leaves a mild, lingering, dark roast aftertaste.

Feel: near creamy smooth; medium body and carbonation that may be a touch too high.

Flavor: touch of coffee after some dark chocolate. Negligible burnt toast.

O: a very fine porter ... and in a can :)

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Photo of woodychandler
4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I first had this at Garage in Philly, but they either do not have an off-license or they have a policy against it. This elevated it onto my CANQuest (tm) want list and it was finally fulfilled by a young lady in Oregon who wanted some Smuttynose Bouncy House.

From the CAN: "Oregon Brewed Porter"; "Go Skiing [-] Go Fishing [-] Go Snowboarding [-] Go Biking [-] Go Rafting [-] Go Flying"; "This Robust Porter was Brewed and C[AN]ned by: Caldera Brewing Company; "'Live Product. Keep Cool, Just Like You'".

I was anxious to get this one started, so once the Crack! had happened, I CANmenced an inverted Glug that actually started to get away from me until I backed off. I was a little late and got a wee bit of overflow to go along with the three-plus fingers of dense, deep-tan/light-brown head that fell while I typed. Color was Dark Brown to Very Dark Brown (SRM = > 27, < 34) with NE-quality clarity and mahogany highlights. Nose had a roasty smokiness along with a dark chocolatiness and a whiff of fresh coffee. Mmmm. Mouthfeel was medium. The taste was chocolaty, but more like milk chocolate and accompanied by a smoky, light bitterness. Jesus! This was so eminently drinkable that it was causing me to question my hophead status. Finish was semi-sweet with lingering flavors of charcoal, chocolate and coffee. I could have had this for breakfast in lieu of coffee!

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Photo of Gavage
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: deep black with a 3"+ tan colored head that lasts. Thick lacing coats the glass.

Smell: nice roasted malts and coffee are easy to pick up.

Taste: this was like eating a loaf of pumpernickel bread. Roasted malts, coffee, dark chocolates, molasses, and a hint of nuttiness rounded it out.

Mouthfeel: smooth from start to finish. Medium bodied like a porter should be, not some stout-like meal. Bread and roasted tones linger briefly on tongue.

Drinkability: very easy drinking as this is flavorful without the heavy body. Definitely a nice brew.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the can into a nonic pint glass.

A great classic look in the glass. Creamy capped light mocha head, big and three to four fingers tall with a flat top and thin bubbled complexion. Excellent red hued mahogany body, dark but with some clarity held up to the light with these gorgeous red edges and hues. Pretty much a great looking porter.

Great hints of chocolate milk on the nose at first. Some good grain and milky sweetness, a bit toned down on the charring but really impressive, with a hint of simplicity on the aroma, perhaps a little clove in there too. Excellent.

Palate comes out a little minor acrid in flavor, but plenty of classic chocolate notes. Body is more milky and lactose like sweet. This really reminds and tastes more like a milk stout. Slightly big sour acidic and very wet palate but not a total loss. Excellent aftertaste that really opens up slowly after awhile though.

Not really what I expecting in a porter. An ok beer, but not what I had in mind.

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Photo of Zorro
3.12/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear brown colored beer with a medium sized brown colored head.

Smells of roasted malt and coffee with a faint carrot scent. Not super aromatic though.

Starts out semi sweet with a strong coffee flavor. Noticeable hops mostly citrus. Faint sourness but it isn't much. Moderate bitterness. Mostly this is a coffee flavored beer.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a mild coffee tasting porter.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.86/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz can into a pint glass.

Appearance: rich, dark amber-brown with ruby highlights. Body is haze-free with a pretty strong effervescence and a thick finger of creamy tan foam. I think it's quite attractive.

Smell: nice and malty with a sweet chocolate element and a light roastiness. Not especially complex, but well-crafted I think.

Taste: toffee, caramel and chocolate start out the flavor, which is followed up by a roastier, ashier element. I actually quite like it -- I could find myself drinking a lot of this.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good carbonation and a pretty good creaminess. I can dig it!

Overall: this is a pretty great porter. It's quite different from its Oregon cousin, Black Butte, but it shines almost as bright in its own way. Good stuff.

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Photo of tone77
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%

A big thanks to the creator of the canquest, woodychandler, for this beer. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a black color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of chocolate, roasted malts. Taste is the same, chocolate, roasted malts, a touch of coffee, very easy drinking. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a satisfying beer.

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Photo of avalon07
3.63/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Poured from a can to a pint glass. Had a dark brown color and a thick texture. There was a quarter inch of creamy, off white head that quickly dissipated. Almost no lacing to speak of.

S: A very underplayed aroma of malt, chocolate, and coffee.

T: Tasted of chocolate, roasted malt, light hops, and some coffee. The overall flavor is a bit on the thin side, with none of the ingredients really shining through.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a very thin, watery finish. Medium-bodied.

O: This feels like a half finished beer. It's not necessarily bad, but could have been better.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.7/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Comes out of the tap an opaque deep sable with a minimal head, but the latter may be an artifact of te pour. Smoky aroma has tones of molasses and high-quality coffee. Absolutely delicious flavor has roast coffee, chocolate and molasses components and is just slightly sweet - and superb! Smooth, fizzy texture is extremely pleasing. If you visit the Pacific Northwest, look for this one!

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Photo of dar482
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The beer comes in a dark brown color.

The aroma has roasted malt, a light sweetness of coconut, toasted bread, and cocoa.

The flavor follows with that light "sweetness" with cocoa, lightly roasted coffee. There's milk stout qualities onto a bitterness of roasted malt.

The beer has a great balance between brown ale and a medium roasted malt. A well made beer for the ABV.

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Photo of RedDiamond
2.73/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pilot Rock is brown with ruby highlights and sports a thin head with no lace. It started with a nice roasted aroma and flavor. But these initial selling points lacked sustain. Most dimensions are otherwise customary with a slightly thin body.

Served on tap at the Siskiyou Pub, Ashland, OR.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.76/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a thin head on a black body.
The aroma is excellent. Roasted malt and vanilla.
The taste is also roasted malt with some mild coffee notes and a little bitterness to round it out.
The texture is smooth with moderate carbonation.
A "go-to" porter.

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Photo of Reidrover
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Wonderful fluffy full headed porter. Great esspresso aromas, roasted coffee. Salty under taste..this is minor yet sets the theme for the porter..the saltiness makes you gulp more of the chocolaty ,.coffee goodness. Great drinking beer..with great backing.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Caldera Pilot Rock Porter has a very thick, beige head, a dark brown, almost black, appearance, and thin lacing left behind. The aroma is of dark coffee, dark chocolate, and brown bread crust. Taste is of those elements, with sweet sugar, molasses, and maybe black cherry skin. Mouthfeel is medium, and Caldera Pilot Rock finishes sweet and highly drinkable.


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Photo of Kendo
3.86/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottom of the can says it was canned on 2/10/14; consumed on 4/26/14.

A: Poured into a pint glass. Body is very dark brown, bordering on black, but when backlit it's clearly brown with ruby-ish hues on the edges. A half-finger of tan head sits on top and leaves behind a little bit of lace.

S: Mainly roasty but with some underlying sweetness as well. Roasted coffee beans and molasses comes to mind. Some chocolate malt as well. Good porter nose.

T: Unfortunately, the thin, watery body doesn't live up to the nose. Tastes of roasted barley, coffee and some modest chocolate malt, but the overall impression is one of weakness/thinness. Finishes with a modest roasted char taste lingering in the aftertaste.

M: Thin, even for a porter. Gives the impression of being watered-down.

O: I bought this to bring to an outdoor, multi-day music festival, wanting some variety in cans. This will fit the bill for that, as I expect to be drinking all day and the lighter heft of this won't slow me down. But the overall impression is hurt by the watery/thin feel.

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Photo of spointon
4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this on tap at the Horse Brass Pub in Portland.

A= This ale poured a deep brown/black with a 1" slightly creamy tan head. The head lasted a good long while and left some sticky residue down my glass.

S= Slight coffee roastiness mixed with treacle-like sweetness combine to make a rich aroma.

T= Extremely tasty porter here. Started off as a battle between slightly bitter roasted malts and the sweetness of the caramel malts. Some earthiness and dark fruit esters creep in to add complexity midway. Finish was medium dry - sort of an extension of the same taste battle.

MF= Medium bodied with just the right "medium" carbonation for the style. Refreshing without being sharp on the tongue.

D= Very sessionable despite the ABV. I really enjoyed this porter and would consider it in among the top 10 examples I have ever had of this style.

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Photo of hophugger
3.47/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Great color, deep chocolate brown. Head is average, disappating fast but leaving very nice lacing. First aroma as I opened the can was a little skunkiness but that quickly left and I had a great aroma of sweet malts and definitely chocolate. Nice creaminess/bitterness blend in the taste. Cocoa leads the way with a touch of milky creaminess following close behind. Also, tastes a little like hot chocolate but not quite as rich. Overall, a decent porter...

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours near black with cola brown edging where light can penetrate. The head is light tan in color and peaks at about a finger's width before dying down in fair time to a broken layer of surface suds and a small ring around the edge. Small, spotty lacing with little stick.

Smell - Mild aroma that consists of milk chocolate with lesser notes of coffee grounds, cocao nibs and with a light earthy hop character.

Taste - Follows the nose. Smooth, moderate flavor that's quite chocolate-centric. Milk chocolate is the predominant character, then lesser notes of cocao and coffee hit mid-taste to bring a touch of bitterness and balance. Earthy, leafy notes hit in the finish along with a touch of smoke to give this one a nice, interesting aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium to full body with low carbonation. Smooth, silky texture. Falls a tad flat in the finish.

Overall - Despite this porter's flaws, it's got a nice chocolate-driven flavor that's just complex enough to keep it fresh sip after sip. Price dependent, I'd buy a sixer to give it another go.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.14/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a shaker pint glass.

Look: The body is black like espresso beans with a well formed mocha head. Light bands of lacing remain on the glass. Good head retention.

Aroma: Roasted grains, chocolate, coffee.

Taste: Roasted malts, coffee, cocoa nibs.

Mouthfeel: Silky and smooth.

Overall: Really impressed by this porter, particularly the creamier, thicker feel. Great taste.

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Photo of Spikester
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First time I have seen this Porter in my area. Pours dark brown wih a large tan head dense bubbles and leaves a few splatters of lace. The head lasts at least 5 minutes.
Smell is rich coffee dark chocolate with a bit of brown sugar or molasses.
Taste is similar with some bitter hops that are well balanced by all the malty goodness as it should be.
Mouthfeel is quite full for a Porter. Carbonation is just right and the finish is bitter sweet.
Very nice beer.

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Photo of delta490
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown with a slightly ruby tint. A fizzy light tan head all but burns off but still leaves some small soapy lacing. The aroma is nice, with both deep roasted malt and some chocolate, which becomes more pronounced over time. The taste is a little less robust than the aroma, providing the same qualities just a little washed out but with a little earthy hops. The body is thinner and has a little carbonated bite to it.

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Photo of Mojo
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce can -> snifter

A - obsidian black with a two inch khaki colored head, not much retention and not much lacing.

S - fairly weak nose with some coffee and bread notes

T - very sweet with some black strap molasses, caramel, and toffee flavors and a finish that is composed of equal parts coffee, dark chocolate, and roasted nuts.

M - a bit thinner than expected, but the carbonation is decent. A mild aftertaste is present as well.

O - pretty good offering. Love it.

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Pilot Rock Porter from Caldera Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 36 ratings.