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Tsarina Esra Imperial Porter - Brouwerij De Molen

Tsarina Esra Imperial PorterTsarina Esra Imperial Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

113 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 113
Reviews: 52
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 9.31%


Brewed by:
Brouwerij De Molen visit their website
Netherlands

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: johnnybravo on 02-11-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 113 | Reviews: 52 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of spdyfire83
spdyfire83

Ireland

2.1/5  rDev -49.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

63rd Review
Bottle to snifter
Bottle #464

Shared with farundrpar on a recent visit to Amsterdam. Consumed side-by-side with Tsarina Esra Reserva.

A: Medium brown. Looks like chocolate milk. 2+ (mocha white) fingernail head on medium pour.

S: Milk chocolate mixed with paint thinner and laid on oak chips. Yuck!

T: Very roasty. Off tint of cardboard and smoked chipotle peppers. Burnt chocolate. Hint of caramel (the only positive in this experience). Overly burnt dark malt.

M: Prickly and not pleasant. Medium bodied/carbonation.

O: Sharp and off. Hodge podge of really weird tastes and characteristics. Unpleasant from start to finish and thoroughly not enjoyable. Not sure if the bottle is/was infected or what, but this was just a bad beer. Sad, because I really enjoyed the Tsarina Esra Reserva that was consumed side-by-side with this.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2011 12:33:48 | More by spdyfire83
Photo of KickInTheChalice
KickInTheChalice

Illinois

3.05/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From notes. Poured from a bottle into a snifter.

The beer itself is nearly black with a tightly wound tan froth that exists mostly as a cap on top of the beer.

The aroma is not that appealing. Dark chocolate, molasses, and some bitter coffee notes provide the nice part of the aroma, but licorice and earthy hops are less interesting, and there is a metallic copper smell that hovers above everything else.

The flavor is slightly better. There are no noticeable metallic notes in the flavor, leaving dark chocolate, roasted malt, smoke molasses to provide a nice front, with licorice and a moderate earthy hop finish. The flavor is a bit strange as well, and it is not something I really enjoyed.

The beer feels fine on my palate. It is full, rich, chewy, and smooth, with a medium carbonation for the style. It is a little bit dry and smoky up front, and the earthy hops, coffee, and licorice, provide a kind of acrid, dry bitterness.

Overall this is not a beer I would really go after trying again.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2013 03:48:27 | More by KickInTheChalice
Photo of Cozzatoad
Cozzatoad

Italy

3.18/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.25

330ml bottle, forgot to check dates

A- Near black colour. Huge light brown head, looks really dense and it shows very nice retention

S- In just three words: roasted milk chocolate

T- A hint of roasted malts upfront, then caramel among a very sweet lactic feel that reminds of a milk stout. Maybe some slight dark fruit hints. Not as complex as one could have hoped. Cloyingly sweet finish, with an unpleasant burnt caramel/alcohol feel that leaves a really bad impression on the back of your mouth. I'm also getting some herbal feel on the back of the tongue, but it feels burnt with alcohol as well ad it does not bring enough balance to an overwhelmingly sweet finish

M- Not at all bad upfront, filling the mouth with a soft viscous feel and just the lightest hint of carbonation. As mentioned, really bad on the back of the mouth and in the aftertaste with that unpleasant burnt feel. Plus, alcohol gets too much in the way

O- Appareance and smell were quite promising but the taste was a total letdown. This is an unbalanced beer, no fine brewing work here, and really not worth it's price

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2013 20:28:56 | More by Cozzatoad
Photo of GONZALOYANNA
GONZALOYANNA

Spain

3.48/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle. Snifter glass. Enjoyed on sep´12. Dark mahogany color & tan headed. Lasting thin layer is left on top. To the nose roasted malt & fudge chocolate aromas, floral fragrances & spiced touches. Creamy & sweet malty sensation. Full body. Soft carbonation. Oily & dense. Herbal & bitter cocoa in the middle. Sligthly sugary aftertaste. Incredible well hidden ABV!!

Serving type: bottle

02-18-2013 22:04:54 | More by GONZALOYANNA
Photo of HopHead84
HopHead84

California

3.78/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11/7/2011

Bottle shares by Tim, thanks! 2010 vintage.

A: Black with a small beige head. Foreboding.

S: Dark chocolate with molasses and licorice, and earthy hops in the nose. Light smoke notes waft from the glass and I get lots of green wood. 

T: The flavor doesn't quite live up to aroma. Light chocolate with some plum and grape, almost a sourness in the finish. Roasted grains are apparent. Alcohol is well masked.

M: Full body with moderate carbonation. The mouthfeel is sticky and chewy.

Overall: Recommended. A good Baltic Porter.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2011 23:07:09 | More by HopHead84
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle number 646, November 2007 Bottle Date; Sampled February 2010
The beer pours pretty much visually flat, though it does muster a large bubbled ring of froth around the edges. The beer is a tar black / concentrated brown color that is pretty darn opaque when held up to the light. The nose smells of umami laden rich malt, hints of teraki, savory roasted grain, a touch of peanuts, toasted hazelnuts, toasted whole grain bread crust, espresso accented dark chocolate. The finish sees a bit of alcohol warming that evokes thoughts of Bourbon. Oxidation definitely is playing a rounding role here in the aroma, but it seems to only be contributing in positive ways up to this point. It is really interesting how nutty the aroma is, this mixes quite well with the rich malt and roast grain notes.

My first sip sees me noticing that the beer is sweet, viscous, yet somehow thin due to the lack of carbonation. This also has a touch of weird, almost rubbery, burnt vegetal note to the finish that is a bit distracting in my first sip. Flavors of molasses, dark chocolate, and burnt brown sugar up front are followed by interesting leather notes, touches of tar, a bitterness from both burnt grain and hops. In the far finish there is a touch of chalkiness, but the bitter roast grain husk flavors linger on the tongue without being overly astringent. Some oxidation adds some burnt sherry notes, a background richness and roundness to the malt as well as a subtle nuttiness to the finish that in combination with some of the chocolate flavors makes me think a little bit of nutella (but without the aggressive hazelnut flavor). Despite the light body (much of which is likely due to the lack of carbonation), this is most definitely a sipping brew and somehow it also has a thickness to it

An interesting beer that I could wish had a touch of light carbonation, but really still drinks pretty well without it. I am not sure if this will actually make 25 years, but it has lasted the past two pretty well.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2010 22:47:22 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of stakem
stakem

Pennsylvania

3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thimble sized pour from this tiny medicine dropper of a bottle that was dipped in red wax. Roughly a 3oz or so pour of this from a ~6oz nip into a 5oz mini snifter. With Kegatron along for the ride, we divulge this mysterious dark liquid. Obligatory bottle numbering system, this one was #46 in line. It appears a dark brown color with a faint hint of brown clarity around the edges. A swirl hardly provokes any lacing effect or bubbles from solution. A few spots and leggings of alcohol are noted on the glass.

The smell of this brew is unexpectedly herbal with hops, grass and sulfur. Some fruity alcohol aspects emerge reminescent of raisin, licorice and some tar-like notes. As it warms up, it gradually gets back in line with roasty elements if dark grain and bitter chocolate scents.

The taste is bitter with a dry roasty grain inclusion that is burnt tasting of char, tobacco and earth. Some raisony alcohol provides a faint sweetness. The tangy inclusion of alcohol mixes with the dry earthy elements to make for an unusual yet enjoyable experience. The more sips are taken, the more the alcohol seems to become integrated in the brew. All across the backend, are Belgian yeast influences mixed with some herbal hoppiness. Licorice last long into the aftertaste.

This is a medium bodied brew with a light level of carbonation. Initially it is pretty bold with alcohol that tapers off and becomes more enjoyable. It also has a little bit of awkward flavors as aromas that seemingly burn of as the experience continues. Not a bad brew but also not something I would get terribly excited over getting to try again. The small format of this bottle was quite ample to get a feel for.

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2012 20:38:11 | More by stakem
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

3.93/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tiny 18cl red wax topped bottle into a couple of snifters. Mucho thanks to Stakem for splitting this little guy with me. Bottle # 0046/1344.

Pours black with a mocha colored head. This retains with a thin ring around the edges of the glass, leaving back a light cascade of spotty foam. The aroma smells of coffee, cocoa, and some light herbal hops. The alcohol mixes in a bit of spicy warmth as well.

The taste is a blend of coffee, chocolate, green citrus, and some more of an herbal hop character that emerges as well. Brunt roast fills out the back, sticking to the tongue along with some leftover pine and lingering spicy alcohol. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied, with a moderate amount of sharpness to the carbonation, giving this a firm creaminess across the back of the palate. The high alcohol presence, while not being overly hot, does start to wear on the palate a bit despite the short pour here.

This was a solid Imperial style Baltic Porter that definitely had some strength behind it but the flavors here never did quite get as deep or robust as they felt like they wanted to. The alcohol also got to be a little bit intrusive here as well. This was certainly good but ultimately didn’t leave a huge impression on me.

Serving type: bottle

01-25-2012 18:08:34 | More by Kegatron
Photo of htomsirveaux
htomsirveaux

Texas

3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

33 cL bottle tried 7 Mar 2009, #26, bottled 1 Nov 2007. Courtesy of ygtbsm94, thanks!

Poured in 0.4 L Steiner Pils tulip. Almost no head, this beer is essentially flat. Pours reddish black, opaque. Aroma is of molasses, prunes, figs, some chocolate and dried cherries. Lots of molasses and ethanol, burnt caramel, slight astringency. Finishes with prunes and bittersweet chocolate. Lots of molassess sweetness throughout, slight hint of smokiness at the finish. Fairly heavy body, mouthfeel is like cocoa powder. Alcohol noticeable but not overpowering.

Good but the lack of carbonation was a big detriment.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2009 02:57:36 | More by htomsirveaux
Photo of FreshHawk
FreshHawk

Illinois

3.98/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Vintage 2009 - Drank 2010.

A - Deep brown, not quite black. Small creamy beige head, that settles pretty fast with a bit of lacing left.

S - A lot of dark roasted malts and barley. A good amount of bittersweet chocolate, some coffee, and some dark fruit. Also a bit of molasses and brown sugar.

T - A lot of those dark, roasted malts are the initial flavor and provides a base for the drink. Some bitter roasted taste, chocolate, and coffee then come in, along with a bit of tobacco. Then dark fruit starts to make a greater presences (raisin and date) along with some molasses. Starts bitter and then eases into a bit more sweeter taste. Alcohol taste is present throughout.

M - Medium to full body that is creamy and a bit chewy. Low carbonation. Also fairly slick.

D - Strong flavors, high ABV, and low carbonation don't help the drinkability. I wouldn't mind drinking one at another time, but definitely not more than one in a night.

Notes: Pretty nice porter, with some strong flavors that evolve through drinking it.

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2010 20:27:28 | More by FreshHawk
Photo of popery
popery

California

3.98/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours black with some dark brown just barely showing on the edges. Small-ish mocha-colored head with lots of fine bubbles. It's actually a pretty decent head for the abv. The aroma has a lot of tasty milk chocolate but seems a bit simple otherwise. There's a lactic edge with a whole bunch of cocoa, so basically milk chocolate. There's a definite caramel malt backbone and a bit of fruitiness to the beer, but it's buried in chocolate. A very light touch of booze. There's probably a light mineral-ish hop flavor, as well, but it's not easy to pick out. The taste is sweet, and while there's a bit more depth, the beer is still on the simple side here, as well. Lots of milk chocolate but a bit more malt and hop complexity, particularly in the finish. It's not quite roasty, but there's a darkly toasty malt flavor in there. The milk chocolate sweetness just doesn't relent, though. Mouthfeel is smooth and full. Very good. This is a nice beer, but I was hoping for more. I tried the recent Evil Twin stout and porter brewed at De Molen, and they were great. So, I guess I had my hopes up for this beer and a couple others. While this is a good beer, I don't think it's worth the price tag.

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2013 06:23:58 | More by popery
Photo of bobhits
bobhits

Kentucky

3.98/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Big dark black porter with a huge caramel head. Very nice looking beer.

A big roasted malt with hints of hops. Porters are normally not the most aromatic of the darker beers but what is here is nice.

Chocolate balanced by roasted malt and enough hops to balance out the sweetness perfectly. The net result is a nice porter that doesn't bite from hops or the roast. A very smooth and somewhat creamy flavor is the net end result.

This is a very creamy beer though not syrupy like some of the bigger imperial stouts.

Tsarina Esra is a nice porter, but I can't see going back to this one anytime soon. Definitely, one to pick up if you like the style. It is a touch pricey like all De Molen beers are in the US, but if you can get past that try this one!

Serving type: bottle

04-21-2013 12:38:44 | More by bobhits
Photo of Jwale73
Jwale73

Rhode Island

3.99/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Generous extra courtesy of KingKong. 330ml bottle served in a tulip. 05/04/2012 indicated on the back label. Pours two shades shy of black with a 1.5 inch, tight, mocha-colored head. Head eventually disperses into a sudsy, broken froth. Interesting nose - malted milk balls and dark fruit. Taste follows nose; however, there's also a slight metallic character interspersed in the flavor profile. Mouthfeel is light-medium in body with a slightly creamy texture and a very mild, even carbonation. Overall, a very good Baltic Porter; however, it may be heading a bit down hill as I'm getting some traces of oxidation. I'd love the opportunity to try this on draft at some point.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2013 23:03:05 | More by Jwale73
Photo of Floydster
Floydster

California

4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

33 cl bottle brought by rallison to the SeaO'Floydster tasting, thanks a lot Ryan for bringing this brew from Netherlands, reviewed from notes, poured into my Rader snifter

A-Deep dark brown, minimal 1/4 inch creamy light tan head that did not last long, no lacing, some legs
S-Dark chocolate, molasses, coffee, honey, booze, roasted malts, port wine, and tobacco
T-Starts off with dark roasted malts, syrupy and coffee in the middle, more of that in the finish along with booze, malt seemed peated in this one and was quite harsh, very rich overall with an always smoky and dry flavor jumping out
M-Roasted, dry, and semi-sweet mouthfeel, medium to full bodied, on the lighter side for carbonation, taste lingers
D-Could drink this bottle but not much more, eleven percent is there and you can taste it, still pretty smooth stuff

This was my last beer of the tasting and not a bad one to end on before going to bed on that super comfortable Motel 6 mattress, would like to try the reserve version now and compare them, first beer from De Molen and it did not disappoint, would drink again, recommended

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2009 03:52:51 | More by Floydster
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to bu11zeye for sharing this bottle at a recent tasting.

Bottle number 640 of 823. Bottled 1/11/2007. The beer pours dark brown to black with a very small tan head. The aroma is roasted malt, teriyaki and soy sauce. The flavor is more of the same with roasted malt, teriyaki and some light smoke. Medium mouthfeel and low carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2010 02:19:45 | More by Mora2000
Photo of biegaman
biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tsarina Esra looks like hot cocoa: black and opaque at first glance but actually more of a dark brown upon closer inspection. There's obviously no chance of seeing through it - the beer is far too dark for that - but there's definite highlights along the edges and it has a taupe colour head.

Tsarina Esra looked a little light coming out the bottle and, indeed, smells a little more like a Brown Ale than it does a Baltic Porter; the notes of toasted brown bread, nuts, and raisins are far more mild than you'd expect from an 11% beer. There certainly isn't the heavily roasted malts that the brewery advertises.

The palate definitely raises the volume up a few notches, but flavours still stay within the boundaries of sweet (dried fruit, black licorice, truffles) as oppose to the anticipated more bitter, dark qualities (espresso, unrefined cocoa). This makes it a slightly more approachable ale but strips it of the rich, decadent notes that distinguish the style's best.

That said, it drinks nothing like its strength and has a chestnut honey-like profile that makes it a satiating porter. It lacks the coffee-ish roast and stout-like semblance of many new world examples, but it has a deliciously agreeable, toothsome molasses/tootsie-roll-like satisfaction...

And hence Tsarina Esra is a little sweet for my tastes. The prunes-meets-rum cake profile isn't exactly what I look for in the Baltic (or any kind of) Porter style and this makes it a tough one to recommend, especially given the rarity and price on this side of the world. De Molen remains one of the best Dutch breweries I've tried, but they have better offerings than this.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2013 03:10:45 | More by biegaman
Photo of GoGriz
GoGriz

Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Rec'd this bottle in a recent trade from Jeff. Thanks for one of the coolest trades I've done to date man. Bottle number 0141...great presentation.

Appearance is pretty nice. It takes a gentle swirl to coax out a thicker head and its color ends up being a cinnamon, mocha tinted brown.
Smell is of milk chocolate and it is very distinct. Wow the nose matches the taste in the milk chocolate department. Other than that though the flavor is a bit one dimensional. Mouthfeel is like a chocolate shake and I like it. Not what I was expecting from this.

A really nice, somewhat simple beer that I know I'll crave in certain moods (which sucks as I may never have it again). I'm enjoying it thoroughly now!

This is the 2009 bottling. 18cl.

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2011 00:30:48 | More by GoGriz
Photo of Thehuntmaster
Thehuntmaster

South Africa

4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

330ml bottle 11,0% Abv.
Served lightly chilled in an over sized wine glass.
Bottled on 08 November 2011 - Good for 25 years.

Appearance: Tsarina Esra appears pitch black in the glass, with a strong back light revealing the deepest of reds along the edge. A rough pour yields a massive, slow-forming, coffee-creme coloured head that displays good retention for the Abv. and leaves some patchy lacing.

Smell: Wow, this is very different from the last imperial porter I had (BBXX), though I guess this is a much more traditional take on the style. Notes include: Roasted malt, ash (noted in most of De Molen's big stouts), dark caramel, sweet dark fruit, a hint of molasses, toasted grain, marie biscuits, a hint of herbal hops and a touch of tar. As the beer warms, milk chocolate notes become apparent.

Taste: Mmmm, this is a delicious imperial porter. Roasted malt, light charred notes, sweet dark chocolate, sweet dark fruits, burned raisins and liquorice are all noted. Warming yields notes of chocolate liqueur, a hint of smoke and a touch of coffee. The finish is moderately bitter with light notes of earthy hops.
Perfect Abv. cover, I would not have guessed this was much more than 9%.

Mouthfell: Pretty much bang on for a big porter! Just shy of a full body with a medium level of super smooth carbonation.

Overall: With winter on its way, this was a great choice for an evening sipper! I wish I had another bottle.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2012 21:46:36 | More by Thehuntmaster
Photo of Sigmund
Sigmund

Norway

4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

180 ml waxed bottle, courtesy of Cardinal Pub & Bar, Stavanger. Also sampled at Olympen, Oslo. ABV is 11%. Bitterness 92,9 EBU. Pitch black colour, no head, hardly any carbonation. Lovely vinous and roasty aroma, dark dried fruits, oak. Roasty flavour with oaky and vinous notes, distinct hoppy bitterness in the finish. Good stuff!

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2010 21:33:55 | More by Sigmund
Photo of jrallen34
jrallen34

Illinois

4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

18cl bottle poured into a tulip, bottle # 1167...Pours a dark brown with a light tan had, rises about two fingers, but gone right away. Spotty lacing...A very strong aroma of alcohol, black licorice, but it sweet, yet I'm not thrilled...The taste pulls this out, super complexity. There is still lots of alcohol, this could use some time before drinking. The taste is very vinous, I would assume this was aged in red wine barrels but I can't find anything to indicate that. A sweet start, red wine, then a bitter coffee finish. A very tannic feel. Enjoyable to drink, but this is a sipper.

Worth trying.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2010 21:46:47 | More by jrallen34
Photo of Absumaster
Absumaster

Netherlands

4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a very dark brown color with a thin beige head that only leaves a small layer on the side of the glass. The carbonation is very low.

The smell is full of chocolate with only a slight roasted edge. There is a hint of smoke and maybe some traces of vanilla and hoppiness.

The taste is a balanced between the dark malts and the alcohol and bitterness. The dark malts offer a dark chocolate and coffee taste, the alcohol is not upfront, but it gives the beer a warming sensation and a big mouthfeel. The bitterness is 93 EBU according to the label, but never mouthpuckering bitter. As said, the beer is very balanced. The high density of the beer gives it a bit of a sticky mouthfeel, but this is very well crafted with only malts.

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2013 15:22:30 | More by Absumaster
Photo of CrellMoset
CrellMoset

Virginia

4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of dkachur - thanks Dan! Poured into a chalice.

A: Deep brown motor oil, minimal head, even less lacing. Remains absolutely motionless in my glass.

A: Smoky, burnt, soy bitternerness, vegetal hops, very pungent.

T: Unbelievably sweet, burnt brown sugar, so crazy toasted across the board. Very salty, in a way, and almost burnt in places but the astringencies aren't harsh or offputting.

M: Thick, motor oil-esque, and "oily" would be a good way to describe it. I'll settle with "slicker than snail snot," to use the description that was floating around the room.

D: This one'll kick your butt if you're not careful, and likely even if you are. A beer to be respected, but definitely one to try - very unlike a lot of other baltic porters I've had.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2008 23:05:02 | More by CrellMoset
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A tremendous beer, bottle number 75. Challenger hops, and saaz for aroma. Sent from Holland, fresh. Left it for about 24 hours, yet it kept foaming over, foam eventually almost disappeared,still tasted carbonated. Jet black.Aroma of cocoa and licorice. First maltiness, then the hop bitterness comes at you and builds up over (several) glasses. 92 IBU, an outstanding effort for its class-I would take this over many great imperial stouts.

Serving type: bottle

02-15-2009 00:54:01 | More by Sammy
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

4.14/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

330ml bottle. These statically-labeled offerings from this Mikkeller-esque brewery keep on coming hard and fast to we beer lovers here in Albertastan.

This beer pours a very thorough black, with dark reddish brown hued basal highlights, and three fingers of puffy, broadly foamy beige head, which leaves a few instances of roller coaster profile lace around the glass as it slowly abates.

It smells of dry chalky cocoa powder, sour black fruit, soft anise, dark sugar, musty earthy, leafy hops, and a twinge of warming alcohol. The taste is a big shot of semi-sweet baker's chocolate, caramel malt, fruity molasses, a slight milky sourness, mild coffee grounds, more distinctive plump raisins, and a fading earthy mustiness.

The carbonation is quit sedate, and unobtrusive, the body a decent medium-full weight, and rather smooth, with strong creamy leanings. It finishes well off-dry, the chocolate and caramel still most prominent, as the fruit, hops, and alcohol pick and prod away in a slow, barely erosive process.

A rather pleasant porter overall, the chocolate dialed up, the sourness dialed down, and the alcohol somehow off in another dimension, or something. Lots of flavour to go around, and really nothing to keep you from enjoying this like I would imagine the titular Russian empress would.

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2013 03:39:05 | More by biboergosum
Photo of gford217
gford217

Georgia

4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330mL bottle, 2007 vintage #172, courtesy of fonefan poured into a tulip.

The top comes off with hardly a sound and an aggressive pour produces a smattering of big tan bubbles on top of an opaque deep brown body. There is no retention or lacing to speak of.

The nose is boozier than I was expecting with a port character that comes out from the very beginning. There are tons of dark roasted malts, coffee and bakers chocolate underneath the booze. There is an interesting mix of tobacco and leather that comes out as it warms.

The taste really explodes with the first sip. There is an ashy burnt malt and tobacco presence to start things off, but it gives way to some espresso and dark chocolate malts in the middle. The finish gets slightly sweeter with some molasses before the big dry finish kicks in.

The mouthfeel is super slick aned smooth with almost non-existent carbonation. The finish is ash-like in it's dryness which I don't often get in a beer.

This is an excellent beer that I think would be absolutely world class if it had a shade more carbonation. As it is, the look and feel take a hit from the complete lack of carbonation. The nose and taste are exceptional with tons of complexity and all kinds of different flavors coming out. Interesting and tasty.

Serving type: bottle

10-09-2009 02:32:02 | More by gford217
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Tsarina Esra Imperial Porter from Brouwerij De Molen
93 out of 100 based on 113 ratings.