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Bourbon Cask Aged Black Watch Cream Porter - Portland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Bourbon Cask  Aged Black Watch Cream PorterBourbon Cask  Aged Black Watch Cream Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

32 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 32
Reviews: 32
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 10.95%
Wants: 0
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Portland Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  ABV ?

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-03-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 32 | Reviews: 32 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of magictrokini
magictrokini

California

4.3/5  rDev +4.6%

2003 bottle found at Keg & Bottle #2. Pours dark brown with a small tan head. Aroma is ripe with bourbon, vanilla, and malts. The taste is very rich; chocolate, coffee, and roasted malts. The bourbon and barrel taste comes out in the end. There is a strange sourness in the aftertaste. Overall, a great porter that just didn't store well.

01-05-2009 21:23:38 | More by magictrokini
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

4/5  rDev -2.7%

2003 Vintage

Pours a nice black color, little carbonation, small tan head, with some nice little islands. The nose is malty, bourbon, chocolate. The taste is sweet, malty, nice bourbon notes, with some nice oaky tones. Medium body. Drinkable, this is a very tasty brew for a 2003. Thanks Eric.

10-25-2008 05:58:21 | More by Wasatch
Photo of mcallister
mcallister

Ohio

3.53/5  rDev -14.1%

This is a nice looking porter especially considering it's age. Dark ruby with tootsie roll tones. A fully carbonated pure mocha head is large but fades quickly and leaves some lace. Some floaties are there as should be. Could have decanted a little better.

Sweet Kentucky bourbon aromas dominate with a big toasty vanilla oak and black cherry not far behind. Hints on licorice and stale coffee with an ever so slight bit of bakers chocolate squares.

This beer is still good but is past it's prime. If not for the bourbon aging it would probably be dead. Mainly bourbon with hints of chocolate and coffee, a bit of vanilla, anise, black tea, spicey qualities with an herbacious feel.

Mouthfeel is thin and somewhat dissapointing. If this beer is left on some shelves I'd definitely buy a bottle for sample or even to taste and experience with others as depending on aging I think this could be hit or miss.

04-11-2007 22:54:35 | More by mcallister
Photo of weeare138
weeare138

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -2.7%

Thanks to hopdog for this...
Appears a black with a small light tan head that retains for a minute and spotty lacing left around the glass.
Smell is of anise, rich caramel, cocoa, cream, and milk sugar.
Taste is of the same aromas kicked down a slight notch.
Mouthfeel is creamy, and sugary smooth. A very enticing beer.

08-27-2006 02:48:25 | More by weeare138
Photo of RedDiamond
RedDiamond

Oregon

3.95/5  rDev -3.9%

Opaque with a retained head. The aroma and flavor mirror one another closely, making the smell and the taste synergistically inseparable. The flavor is certainly distinctive though some may not equate such distinction with desirability.

I enjoyed this beer for the quizzical invitation it delivers to travel beyond familiar territories. There is an obvious whiskey-like bent here that is either an exotic enhancement or a cumbersome intrusion, depending on the run of your personal tastes.

“Cream” suggests smooth, but Blackwatch’s texture is more piquant than smooth, not creamy at all. From my notes: “It tastes like jewelry – sharp edged, semi-precious.” A curious assessment. Some may find such luster appealing. I myself don’t wear jewelry. All of which is to say that MacTarnahan’s bourbon cask aged Blackwatch Cream Porter (a mouthful) is a refined and distinctive brew that does not appeal to my personal tastes though I’m sure others may value it highly.

Another point I simply can’t pass by is a descriptive on the bottle noting that the beverage is “enhanced by slow aging in cask barrels.” So is there another type of aging process besides “slow aging”? Might we otherwise assume the beer was enhanced by “fast aging”?

Ultimately MacTarnahan’s Blackwatch Cream Porter is a fine beer. It needs little further refinement. Just a bit of editing.

03-05-2005 23:02:10 | More by RedDiamond
Photo of aracauna
aracauna

Georgia

3.78/5  rDev -8%

Pours a very dark black with a smallish, creamy tan head. The bourbon aging is evident in the aroma and smells like coffee with oatmeal laced with bourbon. You can taste a good bit of the wood in the flavor along with a touch of dark chocolate. I’m not sure how this would stand up on it’s own. It seems to be lacking a bit of body, but the whiskey doesn’t completely overpower this and I’m enjoying it.

01-17-2005 22:48:36 | More by aracauna
Photo of Crosling
Crosling

Colorado

3.38/5  rDev -17.8%

Brown.

Nose of mainly vanilla, along with toffee, caramel, coffee beans, dark cherries and infused bouron.

Dry and woody, very thin body, along with notes of vanilla, chocolate and dark fruits and finishes with a lingering taste of bourbon.

This was okay.

09-27-2004 19:29:16 | More by Crosling
Photo of IronDjinn
IronDjinn

Alberta (Canada)

4.28/5  rDev +4.1%

Picked up while in Vegas, the 2003 limited release. Poured from a 650 ml brown bottle, front and back labels are silk-screened on in a creamy/beige colour. The body is a dense black, with mahogany highlights when held up to direct light. Thin spongy tan head that settles out to a creamy ring. The aroma is amazing, vanilla, creamy milk chocolate, burnt malt, coffee, and bourbon, with light notes of wood. Like some fancy Italian dessert. The flavour is complex and rolls along in layers, like the undulating tide of some secluded lagoon--sit back in peace and serenity and let it slowly swell and crash across you. Roasted malt and dark chocolate up front, with a sour boozy kick shortly afterwards, then sweeter milk chocolate slowly swells up towards the middle where it starts melding into notes of capuccino and light vanilla, and somewhat of a sour cherry finish. A lot going on here. Mouthfeel is a little acidic from the bourbon presence, and a bit sticky on the finish, fairly light for such intense flavours. An intense experience of aroma and flavours, but not something I could drink on a regular basis, this needs to be broken out for special occasions. A big thanks to DESTRO for recommending this to me.

09-24-2004 23:25:13 | More by IronDjinn
Photo of beerceller99
beerceller99

Louisiana

4.25/5  rDev +3.4%

22 oz. bottle. Pours a dark brown color , slight head fizzles fast but leaves a nice lace. Reeks of french vanilla, hot cocoa. A huge vanilla taste assaults the tongue with a roasted smoked malt flavor in the background. Super smooth, creamy mouthfeel.Very easy drinking, cream porter aptly describes this brew.

Nice.

09-09-2004 21:19:36 | More by beerceller99
Photo of Charthepirate
Charthepirate

New York

4.45/5  rDev +8.3%

Poured from a 22 ounce bomber labeled 2003.

Beer is dark black, with an off white/grey head. Head has a creamy appearance and leaves a nice, thick lacing. Lots of very small bubbles coming through in the carbonation.

The aroma is a delightful mixture of bourbon and , instead theres mostly a smell of mild hops, and coffee.

Initially the beer tastes sweet, with dark fruity esthers coming through. Following is a slight dryness, with some coffee notes. Quickly the flavor of the bourbon and wood mixes in. The combination of coffee and bourbon is WONDERFUL. It all finishes ince and warming, with the hops coming in at the back.

Feels nice and creamy in the mouth. Great stuff.

Great beer.

08-31-2004 03:35:28 | More by Charthepirate
Photo of MrNuggets
MrNuggets

Oregon

4.85/5  rDev +18%

Tan head is full of large bubbles. The Bourbon cask aging is certainly showing through in the nose. All kinds of amazing stuff going on with the taste here. Bourbon, I can taste the bourbon. Roasted malt stands strong in the wave of flavors. Wood and vanilla backed by a touch of coffee. Smooth as silk.

07-23-2004 09:20:59 | More by MrNuggets
Photo of francisweizen
francisweizen

Alaska

4.65/5  rDev +13.1%

Excellent! A deep, opaque black colour with a nicely sized head of tan foam. Aromas are of bourbon, cream, vanilla, oak, deeply roasted malts, caramel, chocolate, espresso, and more! The taste is an excellent blend of oak flavors, roasted malts, coffee, cream, vanilla, and alcohol, this stuff is blended to perfection! The mouthfeel is so rich, creamy, and smooth that I could not beleive it and the drinkability is absolutely amazing. Wow, and I thought that the regular black watch porter was good!

05-17-2004 20:41:12 | More by francisweizen
Photo of DESTRO
DESTRO

Nevada

4.8/5  rDev +16.8%

this pours black with a small tan head. when held to the light it lightens up around the edges but remains a dark concoction. some patchy lacing here and there. the nose is pure heaven. huge coffee up front, very dessert like (chocolate cake, tiramisu), vanilla and fresh cream...simply amazing. the flavor? WOW. burnt/roasted malt, coffee rinds right off the bat. a touch metallic in the middle with vanilla, caramel and chocolate in the house. a touch sour going down the hatch with a light whiskey stab, finishing once again with a coffee rush that stays with you long after youve swallowed. lightly creamy in the mouth yet retains a crisp carbonation bite, simply awesome. this beer not only gets a full on head bang, but it also gets a full blast high volume iron maiden "hallowed be thy name" air guitar solo. glorious!

05-13-2004 06:35:05 | More by DESTRO
Photo of ark57
ark57

Pennsylvania

4.4/5  rDev +7.1%

It pours black with slight ruby tinges around the edges and a khaki colored head. It looks like any average porter or stout, but is much more. There is vanilla, coconut, and chocolate in the nose. It starts out sweet and creamy with some roasted malt (mostly chocolate and some coffee), and then the coconut and wood notes kick in. It finishes somewhat dry. It is lip smacking good. With the coconut and chocolate notes it sort of reminds me of a coconut pattie. Forget the candy, I would rather drink this beer.

05-06-2004 18:45:34 | More by ark57
Photo of beerguy101
beerguy101

California

4.1/5  rDev -0.2%

Dark black color. Large foamy white head. Aroma is chocolate, coffee and a touch of dark fruit. A medium to light bodied porter. Hops are slightly bitter. A very smooth tasting porter. Touches of oak and dried fruit are complemented by a bourbon-like sweetness. Perhaps a bit thin tasting for a porter, but I have been noticing this trait in a lot of porters lately, so it may just be me. A very drinkable winter warmer porter. Etched/painted beer bottle. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly sweet.

03-01-2004 04:43:51 | More by beerguy101
Photo of jtfest
jtfest

Oregon

3.98/5  rDev -3.2%

Deep, rich brown in color -- almost black in the glass -- with a smallish brown head that rapidly thins to a film. The aroma is sweet and malty with woody tones, but not as powerful as I'd expected (hoped?). The mouthfeel is thick, creamy, and slightly carbonated, with tastes of oak, coffee, and toasted tones. A little disappointing as I was expecting much greater bourbon/whiskey flavor, but very nice for what it is. It's definitely the regular Blackwatch kicked up a notch. Highly drinkable.

02-28-2004 03:30:09 | More by jtfest
Photo of Mangus
Mangus

Pennsylvania

4.45/5  rDev +8.3%

My brother-in-law brought this when he came out to visit last weekend. He lives in Portland and this is one of his favorites.

Nice rich black color with a frothy head that settles down to a chunky layer.

Sniff sniff, innnhaaallle, ohhhh nice! Sweet yeasty aromas fill my head and leave a swirl of almost choclatey, malty notes.

Nice mouthfeel. I suck the beer as it sits in my mouth and pull out an earthy sweetness. What a very pleasant taste. Nice and malty, and a definite porter.

One hearty, well crafted beer!

02-21-2004 21:54:54 | More by Mangus
Photo of stoutlove77
stoutlove77

Arizona

4.83/5  rDev +17.5%

While browsing near work at High Times in Costa Mesa in much needed beer replenishing I came across this bomber that had caught my eye with "Bourbon Barrel" labeled on it. While attending the Strong Ale festival at Pizza Port last year I tasted a Bourbon Barrel Stout that was real tasty, this was probably as close as that one beer. The smell was very pleasant; the taste was real smooth with coffee like hints and a caramel touch that went down real good. At some point while enjoying it I did feel a little hit, the full flavor for me might have hidden some nice ABV. If it his were available closer to home I think I could get addicted.

01-31-2004 15:35:43 | More by stoutlove77
Photo of Reidrover
Reidrover

Oregon

4.45/5  rDev +8.3%

22 oz classy screen printed brown bottle.
This beer is very dark, almost pitch black except for some glimpses of mahogany as I held it to the light, lucsious creamy tan had that sticks around..nice looking beer indeed.
The aroma is of dark roasted malts ,followed by a woody whiskey aroma..then cream and liquorice.
Great taste to this beer also..sweet smooth malts, then dark fruits ( blackberry) then the taste of bourbon shows up like a ghost, then its gone and a bitter coffee taste is present..hints of vanilla..tart aftertaste..fantastic stuff.
Very nice and smooth on the tongue..could be a touch thicker.
Im my opinion a great porter from McTarnahans. I hope the takeover will not result in the great "experimental" beers seen recently.
Recommened even at $6 a bottle.

01-31-2004 08:18:26 | More by Reidrover
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
TheLongBeachBum

California

4.5/5  rDev +9.5%

Presentation: Screen printed 22oz (650ml) classic Bomber. The obverse print is appropriately cream colored. The beer is titled “MacTarnahan’s Bourbon Cask Aged Blackwatch Cream Porter” No strength but listed as a "Limited Release Porter Aged In Bourbon Barrels 2003".

Appearance: The crown cap removal revealed a repressed gun-smoke in the neck that did not move until the beer was poured. Incredibly dark looking broth-like offering. Ebonyious body with a light brown tan head, decent at first but restrained a little later on. Nice lacing forms thanks to the glutinous ‘top-up’ pour which replenishes the head to a nice 1” thick, deep woollen covering.

Nose: Oh yes, this was most certainly aged in Bourbon Casks, it flies through in the nose, Ground Coffee and Vanilla twangs twixt freshly ground Coconut, Dark Chocolate, and some alcoholic woody odors invade the nose. Smells like a Dark Chocolate Bounty.

Taste: Very smooth, incredibly free-flowing, like a fine ground talcum powder, smooth to the touch like graphite. Coffee and Vanilla invade the tongue, why Bourbon odors fill the air. The middle is malty and alcoholic with some dark roasted coffee rounded with a fresh coconut milk whirl. The ending is dry and warm, Porter-ish and at times bold. Dry whisky malt woods and some thick viscous alcohol which are astringent, bitter and sweet all at once, they all linger in the aftertaste. Quite the beer.

Mouthfeel: Again, incredibly smooth, a PolyTetraFlouroEthylene alcoholic malt base laden with smooth Oak Bourbon traits licks the tongue from beginning to end. This has a superb mouthfeel.

Drinkability: A favorite – I could easily sink two bottles of this one; I love the smooth aged woody-alcohol feel. Scrub that, I could drink three bottles of this!

Overall: Wow, what can I say, sat at my desk supping this smooth aged marvel it accompanies listening to ‘Staring at the Sea: The Singles’ by the Cure perfectly. Both aged classics that get better with time it seems. But Black Watch is fiercely Scottish, so Bourbon seems a cheap replacement for a good Single Malt, nevertheless, Black Watch is rightly a famous, neigh infamous, Scottish Regiment – in fact Scotland’s oldest. It also had the pleasure of having a legendary British Deltic locomotive named in its honor; Deltic D9013 (Type 55 013), at the time one of only 22 of the world’s most powerful Diesel locomotives. Yes, this is an aptly name beer, and it does not disappoint. Well Worth seeking out.

01-30-2004 07:30:43 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of ZAP
ZAP

Minnesota

4.35/5  rDev +5.8%

Damn near pitch black...nice creamy tan head fades to little to nothing...nose is sweet cocoa, leather, some whiskey notes...body is medium to full...sits right in the mouth....

Taste is very enjoyable...cocoa beans..nice roasted flavor....some whiskey notes...easy drinking and tasty..expected more substance and higher gravity but a very well done porter...not an imperial porter by any means but a true treat to my buds...very easy drinking....better as it warms...top notch porter in my book...

01-28-2004 02:17:04 | More by ZAP
Photo of ElGordo
ElGordo

Oregon

4.3/5  rDev +4.6%

Pours a pitch black color out of a 22oz bottle with a creamy, off-white head that dissipates relatively quickly. Mocha, toffee, maple, and sweet molasses on the nose. Flavor is amazingly complex. Elements of coffee, dark chocolate, molasses, and of course bourbon are prevalent. Finishes very smoothly with a mocha and/or bourbon flourish, depending on the temp. Colder it finishes with the bourbon, as it warms it's more of a mocha flavor. An amazing beer from one of my favorite breweries around. Blackwatch Porter without cask-conditioning is one of the better American dark beers, and the added element of the bourbon cask is simply amazing. Hats off to Kornheuser and the gang for this winner.

01-18-2004 01:39:56 | More by ElGordo
Photo of genaro
genaro

Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev -1.5%

The experience started off with a big coffee colored head that was pretty constant throughout. The lace was excellent. The aroma was full of roasted coffee and caramel. The taste was smooth, sweet, milky, and rich with coffee with traces of caramel. I could have done with a little more hops for bittering and flavor to offset the sweetness and low carbonation, but that's just my taste. Definately a bit chewey, but a friend who tasted it with me suggested it was only one chew, her opinion. The finish was pretty sweet and just a little dry. I had difficulty in tasting anything of the cask wood (oak?) used for aging that was implied on the label. All in all a great dessert beer, but a bit heavy and rich for me. Definately worth trying though.

01-15-2004 19:03:00 | More by genaro
Photo of beernut7
beernut7

Massachusetts

4.35/5  rDev +5.8%

I had been waiting anxiously to pop open this beauty since I ordered it from the West Coast. The pour is a deep mahogany with a creamy mocha head. The aroma of oak and bourbon is unmistakable with a background of nice mellow roasted malt. The body is creamy and heavy supporting an initial huge rounded complex flavor beginning with roast and chocolate notes and building to a very rounded bourbon flavor. The finish holds hints of vanilla. An absolutely excellent concoction that I cannot wait to find more of next season.

12-30-2003 12:36:53 | More by beernut7
Photo of tfinn
tfinn

Oregon

3.33/5  rDev -19%

I was a big fan of Portland Brewing back in the mid 90s; my girlfriend (now wife) and I used to enjoy mactarnahan's and zigzag quite a bit. But the last few years either my palate has changed, or there's been some fundamental change at Portland Brewing, and after a friend pointed it out to me, I've noticed a sugary "sheen" to everything they've been brewing recently.

I saw the 2003 limited edition and crossed my fingers.

The bourbon barrel aging definitely does impart a unique aroma. There's a distinct element to it that I've smelled before, but I can't recall the context. It's quite pleasant, but not terribly complex.

Color is very dark, although I can detect a reddish twinge. The finely bubbled head dies down quickly and provides little to no lacing on my glass.

Taste? It's not bad. There is a relatively strong coffee flavor which fades to toffee / caramel, but honestly I expected more balls for the price and the fuss. It just kinda does its thing and leaves with an overly lactic caramel tail.

The sheen is still there. So sad.

What happened, Portland Brewing?

12-11-2003 06:44:54 | More by tfinn
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Bourbon Cask Aged Black Watch Cream Porter from Portland Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 32 ratings.