Smoke From The Oak (Wine Barrel Aged) - Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 174 | Reviews: 133 | Display Reviews Only:
4.3/5 rDev +6.7%
Purchased on Saturday afternoon alongside ErikTheRed. Nice to meet fellow BAs out and about.
Pours a deep dark villainous charcoal into my snifter. Head comes a bubbling up to half an inch of cocoa-like seafoam and slowly subsides to just a light layer on top. A gentle swirl leaves a wonderful patchwork of dripping lace - if you are into that.
Aromas are strong - deeply laden with the grape character brought from the wine barrels. Oak works its way in as we approach room temperature. Another swirl and the light roasty smokey character wafts in and then back out again, like it has a date with Pam Anderson.
Smokey character sensed on inhale as it approaches my lips. Chocolate hits the front of my tongue, hints of oak, and quickly creeps fruity sweet and heads straight to the grape. Finishes with the transition to drunken raisins and into roasty smokey malts with some more oak on the back end. Has a nice moderate level of carbonation, enough to tickle the tongue here and there, and mouthfeel that sits just right in the middle of the spectrum.
This is quite good - every sip a new experience. Definitely drink this out of a snifter if you have one. I would have to say that Scott knows what he is doing and then some, duh. I would drive twice as far and pay twice as much for this; MY GOODNESS.
03-18-2007 23:23:29 | More by gpcollen1
4.33/5 rDev +7.4%
Thanks goes out to JoeyBeerBelly for this brew.
Poured into a St. Bernardus glass, very nice black color, a very nice highly carbonated brew, a big gusher, lose some beer, nice fizzy tan head, which leaves some sticky lacing behind. The nose is malty, big bourbon/wine notes, with some figs, raisins, plums, a nice touch of toffee. The taste is malty, very nice bourbon/wine taste, with some dark fruits/toffee. Medium body, the alcohol is hidden pretty well, tasty. Very drinkable, this is another tasty CL brew, highly recommended, Thanks Joe.
08-17-2008 18:38:06 | More by Wasatch
4.33/5 rDev +7.4%
Batch 2; Sampled May 2008
I knew this might be a gusher and I still lost a couple ounces to my counter and sing. A soft pour still produces four-fingers of head in my glass plus another two fingers above the rim. The head is a tight, creamed-chocolate, tan color and the beer is a dark-chocolate brown / black color that is quite opaque even when held up to the light. As I pour this brew a nice wine-influenced aroma wafts to my nose. A deeper inspection yields ample Brettanomyces influence with notes of sweat, musty horse-blanket notes, butyric acid and a sharp-yet-light tartness. Underneath the more dominant funkiness is are some porter notes of toasted grain, lightly roasted coffee beans and if you smell the beer in a sideways sort of fashion (figuratively of course) there is a substantial, bright berry like wine character, a touch of jam and some leather and tobacco notes to this beer. The smoked malt aromatics have almost completely been subsumed by the other aromas, but there is perhaps a touch of saltiness here that could be attributed to it.
Lightly sweet tasting up front with a middle that has a nice berry-like wine character to it that just barely makes its presence known. A lot of the carbonation was lost during the initial gushing and in the 5+ minutes it has sat in my glass, it is still well carbonated though and this combines with a fairly light body to make this pretty easy drinking. The funk is a bit more muted in the flavor than in the aroma, but the Brett influence definitely comes out in the finish; musty, light notes of phenolic soaked cotton balls, butyric acid notes, some acidity that accentuates the wine character and a woody mushroom note. This finishes with a mix of fruit-driven wine flavors, and some porter flavors of toasted grain, roasted malts, toasted bread-like flavors and a touch of burnt grain bitterness. The actual oak contribution here is soft; there is some spicy oak character towards the finish, and a touch of tannic character seems to influence the texture, but it remains a supporting cast member here, which I quite like.
My second pour still has an incredible level of carbonation, this makes me realize how velvety the texture of this beer really is. Despite being very well carbonated the beer feels quite smooth and velvet-like all while foaming up as it crosses the tongue; quite an interesting textural experience that I don't believe I have ever experienced in a beer before. I can't taste any smokiness in this brew at all & I wonder if he left the smoke malt out of this brew completely.
This is by far my favorite of the from the oak beers so far. This doesn't have any heavy-handed hard liquor competing with the funkiness that I really found jarring in the other two versions of this I have had. Instead the wine barrel influence works quite well with both the Brettanomyces and the base porter. I really like the fruit notes that the wine barrel aging have added to this beer, it is nothing heavy, but most certainly a welcome addition to up the complexity of this brew. Sans the slight wine influence, this is exactly as I would imagine an old, pre 1900s, unblended, stale porter would have been like (sans the modern malt formulation of course). This is just a great marriage of funkiness & barrel influence with porter. If it wasn't so explosive already I would love to age some more of this. I definitely came into this with a bit of skepticism, but this has delivered and I am quite happy with this brew; this makes me really want to try the Port-Barrel version.
05-16-2008 02:49:20 | More by Gueuzedude
4.33/5 rDev +7.4%
Great looking beer. Jet black with a two finger light tan head, lacing coats the glass. Aroma is super, one of my favorite smelling beers. Oak, winey tannins, and berrys, a small amount of brett funk and maltyness. The predomenant flavors are again red wine soaked oak, red wine soaked blackberries & raspberries, a bit of sourness, not much funk, and the finish is kinda chocolaty and smokey and lingering. Rich and thick on the palate, fairly prickly from the carb and the wine flavors. Kinda strongly flavored to be a drinker, but a whole bomber is no problem at all.
09-06-2010 01:12:09 | More by pmlondrigan
4.35/5 rDev +7.9%
Poured carefully into a snifter, revealing blackish brown body under a thick, tall beige head with very good staying power. Beautiful lacing. Smells like grape cola when cold, or maybe like grape and regular cola mixed together. Now that's all I can think of.
Tastes smoky and a little tart up front with smooth vinous quality on the finish. I would totally have this with a grilled tenderloin, warm or chilled. Nice roasty and a little sweet flavors intermingle between the porter and the wine characteristics. Mouthfeel is very tingly with all the carbonation, but not rounded like a porter and rather more champagne like in its piercing. As it warms, a slight funkiness comes through with additional tannins that makes me wish there were a sour version of this delicious brew. Very flavorful and very drinkable. Something about the combination makes me keep coming back.
If only I could cellar this!
08-20-2010 23:10:38 | More by abuliarose
4.35/5 rDev +7.9%
Big thanks goes out to gn0sis for this bottle. 750ml Batch No. 4. Into my Delirium Tremens Tulip.
A: Pours a very dark brown, light brown head about half an inch thick that sticks around very nicely, lots of sticky clumps of lacing. For the most part this beer is opaque. Great color and great head retention. Nice.
S: So much going on in the nose of this beer, wow, lactic sourness, tart cherries, grape skins, tannins similar to red wine, lots of oak and vanilla, some chocolate and burnt malts way underneath. One of the more interesting beers I've smelt in a while.
T: Like the nose, an incredible amount of things going on here. Initially there is a fairly noticeable amount of sourness going on here, tart cherries, lead way into some chocolate, roasted malt, and a definite bitter black patent/roasted malt like profile, I guess charred would be the best descriptor. Definitely some funk in there. The wine barrel aging really shines at the end of this beer, dry red wine is nice. Very nice flavors.
M: Incredibly dry, and tart, not much in the way of booze. The carbonation on this beer is intense, much like the warning sticker says on the bottle. As it hits your tongue it gets even stronger and more prickly.
D: I'm glad my girlfriend is helping me to share this. Everything is pretty intense in this beer, and it isn't something I'd like to drink a lot of. However this 750ml bottle will share nicely. Very glad to try this beer, as it is a fantastic beer showcasing a lot of American Wild Ale traits with the underlying porter flavors. Nice beer, and highly recommended.
10-13-2010 02:36:07 | More by pokesbeerdude
4.35/5 rDev +7.9%
A- Pours with a very thick head that laces the glass the whole way down
S- The roastyness of a porter combines with the unusual pairing of red wine. A slight spicy smell is also present
T- Definately roasted barley and definately red wine. The wine barrel adds a distinct spicyness and oak notes, as well as a bright acidity.
M- Effervescent and pleasant
D- Not only is this beer a sipper, its a slow sipper
07-23-2008 13:17:11 | More by JoeMayo
District of Columbia
4.35/5 rDev +7.9%
Thanks to Mac for this one. From tasting on 3/3/11.
A: Very nice look, dark brown to black with good lacing and head retention. Head is tan colored. Nice.
S: Very tart cherrylike smell with crystal malt porter buried beneath it. Oak is very present and pungent wine grape (fermented) aromas persist. Roasted malt is there but isnt quite as strong as I'd like.
T: Lot more roasted and PEAT malt taste, which is very nice. The brett is there with citrus to peach notes as well as the prevailing oak. Chocolate in there too. Nice.
M: Very carbonated but it works with the sour tinge of this.
D: A nice beer, interesting and unique.
03-06-2011 00:20:29 | More by Dreadnaught33
4.35/5 rDev +7.9%
On tap at the Blind Tiger.
A- pours a dark chocoalte brown, nearly opaque. Nice fluffy coffee coloured head which lasts for a long time. This is a great looking beer.
S- Rich chocalte and sweet alcohol. Defiinite malt overpowerment. Very nice.
T- First you get the bitter roasted malt followed by an the sweetness of the alcohol followed up again with mild hops(English of some sort I think). Very well rounded though the alcohol may show through a little too much. The wood comes through in the aftertaste. Very interesting
M-Medium bodied, not too thin. This may be too thick for the style but I truly like it.
D-The alcohol is a bit too prominent for this to be easy drinking but it is quite tasty. I will try anything from this brewery now. A very interesting offering indeed
04-04-2007 02:06:32 | More by sleazo
4.4/5 rDev +9.2%
Thanks to Rciesla for hooking me up with this one.
1 pint, 9.4 fl oz poured into a snifter. Batch no. 2.
I got the email from Scott saying to refrigerate this for at least a day before opening to keep it from gushing. Well it was in the fridge for two days and still managed to overflow and create a puddle of delicious beer on my kitchen counter. Oh well, there's still plenty left in the bottle to enjoy :)
Pours a complete black with a full one finger brown colored head that dies down to a good layer of bubbles. Nice webbing left behind on the sides of the glass. Smell is pretty funky, I didn't expect it to be sour, but boy is it. A good amount of merlot with some bitter chocolate. Very faint charred wood and pine in the nose as well. Very quick roasted barley on the tongue quickly taken over by sour apples and grapes that linger throughout. Chocolate, bitter coffee, and oaky goodness towards the end that leaves the tongue a bit dry. Big complex flavors from start to finish, very nicely done. Medium to full body with a fluffy feel and a prickly carbonation. Curious to know what the abv is on this one. Even though the wine is there, it's not boozy and obnoxious by any means. Better than the Rum version for sure, looking forward to the Bourbon version next.
04-25-2008 00:16:22 | More by BeerTruth
4.43/5 rDev +9.9%
Thanks Cuzco for hooking me up with this bottle. The beer was served in a goblet. The beer was chilled for over 2 weeks. So it was plenty cold upon opening a major geyser of beer went on my counter. Oh No! A quick recovery and the was served split with my wife.
Appearance: The body of the beer is black with ruby highlights. The head is a thick 2 fingers high dark brown. Major lacing marks the beers passage from my glass.
Smell: A ghost of roasted malt and chocolate are hidden under a very nice vanilla oak, smoke, tart and lactic grape, mixed berries. As the beer warms up the aromas from the barrel really opens wide. This beer must be allowed to warm up to shine. A most excellent smelling beer.
Taste: The beer leads with funky lactic tannin forward wine. I am not a big wine drinker but this definitely adds to the beer. The beer bears alot in common with a sour brown ale. The port wine barrels are a dominate force. Nice tart fruit tones are present. A bit of roast smoke and chocolate nibs are under lying the beer. Improves alot as the beer warms up.
Mouthfeel / Drinkability: The body of the beer is light carbonation is well played. A Nice beer to linger over and relish. May not be every beer or wine drinkers thing. Very welll done!
12-31-2010 16:28:35 | More by nlmartin
4.43/5 rDev +9.9%
Received this brew quite some time ago from scthaden. I really enjoyed the Rum Barrel version so hopefully this one is just as tasty. Drank from my Surly Darkness snifter while watching North Carolina vs Oklahoma in the Elite Eight.
Batch #2, Bottled February 2008. Read the bottling notes and it said this could be gusher. I opened it VERY cold and still lost about a ¼ of the bottle.
Appearance- Pours dark as night with a nice ULTRA fluffy murky white head that never recedes. The giant cap and collar leave the fluffiest lacing than I've ever seen left on a beer glass. It's like plaster stuck to the inside of my glass. Amazingly beautiful beer.
Smell- Slightly tart with some light green apple skin and damp basement funk. Nothing crazy as the nose is actually fairly light. A bit of light chocolate and coffee but more leather and dirt than the previous two. I don't get any smoke in the nose and honestly the oak isn't all that prevalent either. A light cherry note from the wine is detectable and seems to get a bit stronger as it warms.
Taste- Starts with tons of tobacco and salty leather with a light fruity tang and a bit of tart. Very earthy with seems to be less funk in the taste than what I got in the nose. The faintest of sour rushes across my tongue in a very vinous fashion. Somewhere between red wine vinegar and tart cherries. A bit of subtle dark chocolate comes through in the finish though. Zero smoke or alcohol is detectable although it is slightly tannic in the finish.
Mouthfeel- Thick and rich with a super nice creamy feel and pretty sharp carbonation. The second glass really settled the beer nicely though and was near perfect. My score reflects the difference of the two.
Drinkability- This is good, really good. I absolutely loved the Rum version and was really surprised to the whole sour aspect. I knew more what to expect on this version so I'm not quite sure if it the Rum was wholly better or just a fantastic surprise that makes it better in my head. Either way I know that this is damned good and the wine really does play a surprisingly big role in the taste. Thanks Shannon!!
03-29-2009 22:46:46 | More by younger35
4.45/5 rDev +10.4%
I won this in a LIF from softcough. Thanks!
Appearance: I was warned that this was going to be a gusher, and surely enough it was. I found it pretty manageable, however, and didn't lose any beer. The beer itself pours a dark but clear brown with two fingers of tan foam. Head retention is excellent, as expected from a beer with so much carbonation.
Smell: Mild bretty funk and sourness, musty oak, roasted grain, bittersweet chocolate and a hint of dry red wine. There's a lot going on, but it doesn't smell muddled. So far so good.
Taste & mouthfeel: Subtle berry-like sweetness up front, presumably from the wine, followed by oaky tannins and a hint of cacao. Medium-bodied and really damn smooth, though slightly overcarbonated for the style. The finish reveals notes of tobacco and smoke; the only place I could really pick out any distinct smoke flavors, though it's still reserved. Impressive complexity here, but it's all pretty harmonious - this is surprisingly drinkable.
Notes: Incredibly unique stuff in this day and age, I can imagine this being quite similar to the beers people were drinking centuries ago.
07-24-2008 00:56:56 | More by largadeer
4.45/5 rDev +10.4%
Thanks for SMason for hooking this up in a trade.
A: Pours extremely dark brown with some ruby highlights around the edges, capped by three fingers of rocky beige head. Retention is very good as it settles ever so slowly, leaving moderate lacing down the glass.
S: Sour character up front with citrusy lactic acid and tart cherries, followed by tannins, dark grapes/vinous notes, dark fruits - more cherries and grapes, along with blackberries, oak and vanilla, and roasted malts with hints of chocolate and coffee near the backend.
T: Starts out with lactic acidity and a good citrus character, followed by some tart green apples. The wine character shows up strong on the mid-palate with some light oak, moderate tannins and lots of dark grapes. The base porter character shows through near the end with roasted malts and some slightly bitter chocolate, before moving into a finish with a burst of sour and some charred malts.
M: Medium bodied with high carbonation, a little thin but not damagingly so.
D: Extremely drinkable for a sour, very well balanced and quite an interesting brew.
10-23-2010 04:45:42 | More by Xul
4.45/5 rDev +10.4%
A: Black, very black. With a nice thick tan head. This thing erupted when I opened it. It was actually kinda exciting.
S: Super ripe cherries up front. Also sour apples, raspberries, unripened grapes and lots of malts.
T: Beautiful. Lots and lots of flavors. Bitter and sour. Apples, CHERRIES, MALTS, CHOCOLATE and a little coffee & nuts.
M: A little fizzy. But this hasn't sat at all.
D: This is an Elite Brew. Super complex. But to put it simple, it taste like a chocolate covered sour/black cherry, w/ a coffee bean in the center. It is delicious. I can't wait to try this in a year or so.
05-09-2008 00:22:50 | More by gkatsoris
4.47/5 rDev +10.9%
Much thanks to hopdog for sharing this bottle that we compared next to the original Smoked Porter...
Appears black with dark brown edges when held to the light. A fluffy tan head slowly fades away. Scattered lace is left around the glass.
Smell is vinuous with light cherries, light vinegar, and oak with mild vanilla, caramel, and light cocoa.
Taste is of the aformentioned aromas. It's a very interesting mix of the smoked porter complexity mixed with the oak and wine making for a superb invention.
Mouthfeel is full bodied with light tartness, oak, and semi-dry finish.
04-06-2007 20:04:40 | More by weeare138
4.47/5 rDev +10.9%
Batch 4 (2010) shared by Denise -- thanks!
Gotta start out by saying this beer redefines the term "gusher." Label on the bottle advises cold storage and immobility for >24hrs prior to opening, and wow, they weren't lying! A solid 5 minutes was spent with my hand holding the fury inside the bottle before distributing pours.
Pours a deep, murky brown with some manila head and beady lace. Wine aromas greet me from afar -- honestly reminds me a lot of b3 Rosso e Marrone. Tart fruits, smokey undertones, hints of roasty malts, and plenty of other stuff that "shouldn't" be in a beer of this style. But to hell with that: this is awesome.
Tart fruitiness up front; wine-like acidity. Complex mixture of flavors, ranging from smokey to sour; roasty to oaked. Again, comparisons to Rosso dance in my head. Endlessly creative, and utterly delicious.
Body is a bit thin, especially for a porter. Matches the style for a sour (I'd categorize this as an Oude Bruin), though. Overall, this is among the most creative beers I've tried, and it works marvelously. Truly unique; such a shame they altered the recipe. Further reinforced my faith in Captain Lawrence to produce world-class sours.
01-08-2012 23:04:25 | More by brystmar
4.47/5 rDev +10.9%
Poured from 22 oz bomber batch 3 into a Wine Glass. Pours a dark espresso color with a nice sized head with tiny purple bubbles from the wine barrels.
Smell of a sweet dry Cabernet or similar red wine mixed with smokey malted goodness. Mouthfeel had a medium density, but the acidity from the wine may have made it taste thinner.
Taste at first surprised me a little bit as it is hard to imagine a flavor taking over a Smoked Porter with flavor. This beer does it and does it well. Tart and tangy acidic flavors from wild yeast in the barrel as well as additional yeast added by CL. Chocolate base and smoked peaty flavor in the back remains from what this beer was before its transformation in the Wine Barrel.
Wild yeast mixed with wine barrel flavor and smokey malt goodness. A different beer than any other I have had, and a delightful change from the norm. Curious to see what would happen to this beer after a few years in the cellar...
09-17-2009 19:01:57 | More by alpinebryant
4.47/5 rDev +10.9%
Batch 4. Big thanks to Beandip for this bottle. Cheers Adam!
Deep mahogany bordering on black body. Super carbonated beer produces a nearly excessive amount of head. Very reminiscent of a Jolly Pumpkin pour. Massive brown sugar colored head slowly works its way back leaving a slim cap sitting atop for the duration. Slight sticky lacing clings though the majority is washed away after a few drinks.
The aroma resembles more of an Oude Bruin than a Smoked Porter, this is not too surprising with the wine barrels involved. Strong tartness and deep berry fruitiness. As the beer warms the more traditional porter smells come to life. The smoke is light though stronger roastiness and cocoa are noted. At the perfect temperature the blend of tart fruit and roasted malt deliver one of the more intriguing bouquets I have ever come across.
The aroma givens a pretty clear indication of what is to come across the tongue. The tart berry and wine qualities are more dominate towards the front of the palate. Roasted malt and chocolate flavors develop as the beer moves toward the midpalate. Oakiness and vanilla flavors manage to bring the flavor together. The smoke is rather subtle though grows stronger with warmth.
Medium bodied big porter sits lighter on the tongue than other porter I would dare call robust. The carbonation lightens the body allowing the beer to glide smoothly across the tongue. Deep flavors attach themselves to the palate making for a long finish.
Outstanding beer. Thanks to Beandip again for providing me with this opportunity. The combination of flavors and the contrast of them on the palate makes for a beer experience like no other. This is a beer I could not blames someone for hoarding. Smoke from the Oak Wine is delivers a finely crafted beverage which makes beer geeks salivate and believers out of the un-initiated.
10-26-2010 00:03:07 | More by kzoobrew
4.5/5 rDev +11.7%
Poured from a 750ml bottle into a DT tulip. Special thanks to Ineedabeerhere for this from a trade from a while ago!
A: Pours a typical porter black. Some faint lighter brown notes at the edge of the glass. Capping this is about 1 1/2 fingers of rich, dark khaki colored foam that featured excellent retention and left some pretty lacey webbing in the glass.
S: Excellent aromas of slightly tart red wine, but also scents of the base Smoked Porter. Roasted malt, smoked chocolate malt, Cabernet and/or Pinot Noir, and fresh not quite ripe berries.
T: Exactly as above with a late addition of dark chocolate covered cherries and a bit of funk and sodden barrel.
M: Smooth and velvety with the perfect amount of prickle on the lips and tongue.
D: I have to say that, so far, this has been my favorite in the SFTO series. I think my preference lies in the fact that you can easily pick out characteristics of its' Smoked Porter base. Now I just need to try the Bourbon SFTO to complete the series.
01-19-2010 01:28:34 | More by GbVDave
Smoke From The Oak (Wine Barrel Aged) from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 174 ratings.