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MacTarnahan's Winter Humbug'r Ale - Portland Brewing Company

Not Rated.
MacTarnahan's Winter Humbug'r AleMacTarnahan's Winter Humbug'r Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

64 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 64
Reviews: 44
rAvg: 3.51
pDev: 12.25%
Wants: 2
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Portland Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Malts: Caramel, Black Roast, Wheat and Oats
Hops: Northern Brewer and Willamette
Bitternes: 27 IBU
Alcohol By Volume: 5.3%
Availability: September through December

(Beer added by: Reidrover on 10-08-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 64 | Reviews: 44 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of robmorris31
2.23/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

DO NOT buy if you are expecting an ALE!!!

Not one of my favorite Winter Ales this season. It's sold and self advertised as a Winter Ale. It says it's a "deceptively dark holiday ale" however it is in-fact a winter porter. If you read the neck label on the bottle it reads "The limited edition Porter with a deep, dark character and rich malt flavor that will unravel your ribbons.

As far as porters go, yum!

It's reminiscent of Bare Knuckle Stout and Boddington's.

Not very hoppy, more barley flavored.

robmorris31, Dec 04, 2011
Photo of beerandcycling88
2.63/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

From notes poured from a bottle into a mug.

A This beer pours out a nice deep brown almost black body. The head is about 1 finger but lasts pretty much the entire time you drink it.

S The nose of the beer is kind of lackluster and faint. But there are notes of coffee and chocolate in there.

T. The taste starts off strong with very nice notes of chocolate, coffee and roasted malt. However it finishes with nothing but essentially water.

M The mouthfeel is kind of thin and watery but actually not bad. It's just not good.

Overall this is a very disappointing beer. The taste has some signs of potential with a very nice strong start of coffee and chocolate. However the lackluster nose and the watery finish pretty much leave you wanting more from this beer.

beerandcycling88, Apr 13, 2011
Photo of pdxtomct
2.75/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

This is not one of the better winter ales I've tasted this year. It has decent color and the malty character is okay. But there is little aroma and mouthfeel iis non-existent. There's a reason Humbug'r sells for under $2.50 a bottle in stores. If you do choose to buy some of this stuff, drink it quickly. It won't hold up to cellaring.

pdxtomct, Dec 13, 2011
Photo of Jeffreysan
2.94/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a pretty, completely opaque, pitch-black color with a quarter of a finger of caramel-colored head that quickly dissolved into a thin lacing of foam that almost completely covered the entire top of the beer.

Aroma: Strong aromas of roasted malt, freshly baked dark bread, dark chocolate and brown sugar.

Taste: Flavors of roasted malt, coffee, some subtle licorice, some generic sweetness, and subtle hops. Unfortunately, all the flavors are muddled and muted, not leaving much of an impression.

Mouthfeel: A little thin actually, with very little, but some carbonation. With an ABV of 5.3%, there is no presence of alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is an ok beer, not bad, but not good either, rather, it’s bland and pretty forgettable.

Jeffreysan, Feb 27, 2014
Photo of froghop
2.98/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

pours a clear dark brown with a red tint with held to the light, a large khaki head, and some lacing.

smell is faint, sour malt, caramel, and some spice.

taste is watery, spice, some metallic, caramel, and a little sour malt, end is a little on the tart side.

froghop, Dec 26, 2009
Photo of Magpie14
3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A: pours reddish brown and once gathered in the glass melds a solid heavy brown with dusty black, a moonless brew. I must admit that the label "deceptively dark" is in good order. Just about as impressive was the fairly dense wallop of lasting mocha cream that perched atop. Lacing is in the norm with some good filmy patches. As far as appearance is concerned, this is one of the better MacTarnahan brews

S: caramel, chocolate malts, with a light floral minty hop tinge. Some type of dry-woody sour smell permeates within each whiff

T: this beer starts with mildly roasted malts dusted with cocoa powder and a slowly accentuating caramel. Within each sip, especially right after the finish, a sour tang hits the tongue. This is immediately followed up with a very timid stale and dry coffee character. Some dryness pairs with a charred character as the beer is warming, malts are showing up a little more
I find the flavors fitting for an American Porter just not in the right dimensions or quality. Not as dynamic or complex as I had hoped

M: a slick glassy beer with medium body and feel. Carbonation is right where it should be, not interfering with much and providing a fuzz. By the look of the moonless body it seems it should be heavier, or that would just be nice

D: okay beer, it drinks easy enough. I would reach for other American Porters as this showing is kinda timid, flat, and unvaried

Magpie14, Nov 15, 2009
Photo of casapy
3/5  rDev -14.5%

casapy, Apr 06, 2013
Photo of 2GOOFY
3/5  rDev -14.5%

2GOOFY, Dec 30, 2012
Photo of timtwoface
3.03/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I've seen this beer in the shelf at a local supermarket for months now and as the Christmas season is finally upon us, I finally decided to give it a shot.

I was surprised at how much I liked it. For a porter it's standard...I'm more of a stout guy so for my taste, it came across as weaker, simpler, but still delicious and filled with those caramel-and-coffee tastes that make these beers delicious in the first place. And for only $2.29 for a 650ml bottle, that's quite a good deal.

I won't come running back as there are other delicious beers in this vein I enjoy more, but it's definitely a worthy candidate for someone looking for a decent porter.

timtwoface, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of BilbosNuts
3.05/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a dark brown color with light brown and garnet colors coming through on the sides. A creamy tan head sits on top. Light bubble streams can be seen rising up the sides of the glass.

S: The aroma consists of light roasted malts with a slight piney hop profile. This is basically all I could pick up here.

T: The taste is similarly muted. The same roasted malts and piney hops are present, but are limited.

M: It has a sort of watery feel to it and it's body is on the lighter side for a porter. It has a moderate amount of carbonation.

O: This was just an average porter for me. The flavors and aromas were somewhat muted and I would've liked to see these aspects more pronounced.

BilbosNuts, Jan 05, 2012
Photo of RJLarse
3.05/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I bought a bottle of Humbug'r in a grocery store. $3.99. Poured in to a pint glass.

Pours an opaque black color with a bubbly beige head that reduces to a thin froth.

Smell is a sweet chocolate milk aroma.

Taste is a roasted grain and coffee flavor, but with a bit of an acerbic vinegar like flavor on the finish.

Mouthfeel is a bit watery, with a dry bitter aftertaste.

In terms of drink-ability it's not the best porter around, and is really nothing special in terms of the holiday season either. I'm probably not having this again.

RJLarse, Dec 19, 2011
Photo of Jsteez
3.05/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a dimpled beer mug.

A-Deep black and not translucent; light brown root beer 2 finger head that lasted throughout consumption. This head was thick and foamy. It almost looked like I could eat it with a spoon! I love the look of a good porter! Sticky lace left on the glass.

S-My first whiff was of black licorice and malt. It had a slight smell of molasses and brown bread, but not too strong. There were hints of barley and oats, too.

T-My problem with this beer is that right after I poured it and started drinking, it had an unpleasant metallic irony flavor. It was mostly prevalent in the aftertaste. The aftertaste had a bite once the metallic taste dissipated. However, after the beer warmed a bit, the true flavors "ripened" and the metallic taste went away. I could taste spice, cinnamon chocolate brownies, and mocha-choco cake.

M-Full-body, carbonated a little too much.

Overall- I am not sold on it, but it was okay. There are other holiday porters out there that are destined to please.

Jsteez, Nov 30, 2012
Photo of mactrail
3.08/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Brownish black beer with a light body. Decent carbonation to start. More of a dark lager with some deep roasted malt. Quite a lot of grainy flavors. Slight sourish taste, maybe from the charred malt. Lacking in depth. A fair amount of flavor, but not much malt body. Thin and the dishwatery caramel hints finish it off. Some slight hoppy bitterness.

"Deceptively dark" is about the silliest thing anyone has put on a beer label. "Festive" is about the last word you would use to describe this. A plain cheap beer with a nice label.

mactrail, Dec 25, 2011
Photo of Wetpaperbag
3.15/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark with a nice frothy tan head.

S- The smell was very to the style of a porter, roasty with a good hit of coffee.

T- This was a very standard porter type beer. I would have loved a bit of spice or something to feel a bit more winter like. But good coffee notes and a slight vanilla hit. Very roasty.

M- Thin, thinner then I would have thought, but still good with the style.

D- Not too bad, easy to drink for sure.

Wetpaperbag, Nov 14, 2009
Photo of Elimination
3.2/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

For some reason I missed last years release...

Look is typical pitch black with an alright sized mocha head.

Smell is very light coffee chocolate and a tad bit of hops

Taste is the same but the cocoa and chocolate sort of stands out a bit. Almost like a carbonated chocolate milk.... Here is also a Metal taste to it at the end that really brings this down.

Mouthfeel is a nice lightness for a porter

Drink is a bit above sub par but be use I'm only craving a porter today.

Elimination, Sep 18, 2010
Photo of GreenCard
3.23/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: deep mahogany, opaque, narrow layer of tan suds that dissipate to a thin crown

Aroma: cola, malt, weak coffee, black pepper

Flavor: dryish malt profile with a mild acidity; touches of roast and caramel; finishes fairly dry with a roasty aftertaste

Mouthfeel: medium body, spritzy carbonation, crisp

Other comments: "A rich, holiday porter." Not quite an accurate description. Porter, sure. But it's not particularly rich.

GreenCard, Nov 12, 2009
Photo of katybee
3.23/5  rDev -8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured a slightly translucent cola-brown, with tan 1/4" head which quickly dissipated, true to the porter type, but without any other really distinguishable character. Lightly hoppy on the tongue, and just a little "guinness sourness"; then some malt flavor on the breath out and more as the beer warmed up. Light to medium bodied; a little too thin, I thought. Granted there was a nice balance of hops to malt,a little bready and a little bitter and no residual aftertaste, but for a specialty porter I expected more flavor and body. There was no real dimension to this beer, nothing to remember except that it was highly drinkable and went quickly and easily, due to the moderate ABV. Bah humbug!

katybee, Dec 13, 2010
Photo of edwardkersh
3.25/5  rDev -7.4%

edwardkersh, Mar 31, 2012
Photo of corylew
3.28/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pretty solid winter porter. Nice roasted malt flavor accentuated with hop bitterness. Tastes chocolatey and nutty, not too bitter and slightly sweet. Light smokey flavor lingers after it goes down. It's pretty light in body making it a good beer to kick back a few of. Other than that, it's relatively forgettable but certainly not flawed.

corylew, Sep 22, 2011
Photo of jkdrummer
3.28/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A dark dark porter. Pours a nice foamy head that slowly dies into a thin lace. Not much aroma but this is a porter. The taste is very roasty, chocolatety, smokey - typical porter really - nothing very special. Mouthfeel is a little thin, but this not a stout right? The price is right though, not a bad choice is the Anchor or Butte is not stocked.

jkdrummer, Sep 20, 2011
Photo of beer348
3.3/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A : Nice simple bottle design, feel. Twist off cap.

S : Smelled good, like a dark porter should.

T : Seemed a little too bitter.

M : Had nice texture.

O : Good beer. I got a 6-pack. I think it could have been sweeter. That was the main problem. Just seemed like something was missing.

beer348, Feb 12, 2012
Photo of N3rdM3t4l
3.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Brown bomber into standard pint. Served cold.

A: Completley opaque with a finger of richly chocolate colored head that fizzeled down to nothing like it was a soda. Looks tasty except the head was sad.

S: coffee notes, smells like darkness. No hops on the nose. A little bittersweet chocolate. Something I can't quite identify but not un-pleasant. A tad sweet smelling.

T: big coffee notes, a bit of bitterness but not hop bitter, more dark roast bitter. Just enough hop to balance. A hint of metallic taste to the finish.

M: rich, as advertised. But thinner than expected. Smooth, the carbonation doesn't add or detract.

O: for $2 and change this is a good buy. It is a good porter all around, nothing stands out to make this great but it is worth drinking.

N3rdM3t4l, Oct 07, 2012
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.35/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Purchased at the Hawaii Liquor Superstore in Kahului, Maui, Hawaii. I picked this one up because I have never seen it in California.

Pours an opaque black with a 2 inch puffy khaki head that settles to a film on the top of the beer. Chunky rings and streaks of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of roasted dark malt, coffee, and some metallic notes. Taste is of roasted dark malt, coffee beans, and some slight cocoa flavors. There is a mild roasty bitterness that sticks around after each sip. This beer has a higher level of carbonation with a crisp but thin mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good porter but nothing that special. I have never seen this in California so I am glad I was able to try something new.

UCLABrewN84, Nov 27, 2011
Photo of JohnGalt1
3.38/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz from the COOP poured into my Delirium goblet...

No real head.. no lace... the brew is perfectly black.. Ink.

Nose immediately reminds me of the Blackwatch without as much licorice.. smells black.

Flavor is more stout than porter.. dry roasty malts.. with warmth some malty sweetness helps pull the brew together.. chocolate with a weird tart essence.. odd.

Fresh and more interesting than inviting.. seems pretty limp... too burnt as I finish the bottle... Not sure what to make of this one.

JohnGalt1, Nov 10, 2009
Photo of bishopgary
3.4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: pours dark brown with slight amber tones. Develops a slight head that quickly fades.

S: Pretty mild in this category, not too intense. However there is some chocolate, and slight roast malt aromas.

T: Some mocha, hints of burnt coffee. Pretty light on the malt, could be heavier. Not too sweet, finishes slightly bitter.

M: Lighter in body than I would expect. Nice carbonation.

D: Fairly drinkable, worth the price paid. If you are looking for something on the dark side without heaviness. The overall mildness of this makes it pair well with a wider variety of foods.

bishopgary, Nov 30, 2010
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MacTarnahan's Winter Humbug'r Ale from Portland Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 64 ratings.