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Sea Dog Riverdriver Hazelnut Porter - Sea Dog Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Sea Dog Riverdriver Hazelnut PorterSea Dog Riverdriver Hazelnut Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
79
okay

274 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 274
Reviews: 169
rAvg: 3.48
pDev: 15.23%
Wants: 3
Gots: 4 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Sea Dog Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is one of a kind! Four different malted barleys combine to create a distinctive, full-bodied beer with a roasted nuttiness, uniquely enhanced by a hint of hazelnuts. Smooth and creamy with the nose of the Willamette hop, this porter is a beer style unto itself.

(Beer added by: Dogbrick on 12-16-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 274 | Reviews: 169 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jonathaniler
jonathaniler

Florida

1/5  rDev -71.3%

01-27-2013 02:55:07 | More by jonathaniler
Photo of andrewinski1
andrewinski1

New Hampshire

1.63/5  rDev -53.2%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Bottle just says "Hazelnut Porter." Poured into a pint glass. The color is dark brown/black with a small light tan head.

The aroma is dinstinctly Shipyard. Butterscotch and yeastyness dominates the aroma. Chocolatey porter aromas are hardly detectable. I'm bummed.

The taste starts out with bitter ash and char, with some sweet malt notes. This quickly turns into a bomb of Ringwood.

The body is light to medium, with lots of carbonation that compromises the drinkability.

This is too much Ringwood for me. I am dumping this and having a homebrew.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2011 02:36:41 | More by andrewinski1
Photo of jellis00
jellis00

Virginia

1.85/5  rDev -46.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Wow! What a terrible porter. I am a huge fan of dark beers, but I would rather go sober than drink this beer again.

A: It pours fine, nice dark head.

S: I think it is a pleasant smell, with a hint of vanilla.

T: Horrible! God awful idea to mix hazelnut + a dark beer! I think chocolate, coffee, malts are good enough. The hazelnut overpowers the dark beer aspect, and you get the sensation of a really bad starbucks drink.

M: Well, it is not great. It does not settle in the mouth like most dark beers.

D: I will never buy this beer again. Period. I think the concept was good, but the actual mixture is nasty. The after taste is also unpleasant, it sorta leaves a gummy feeling in the mouth.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2010 03:30:44 | More by jellis00
Photo of DogFood11
DogFood11

California

2.03/5  rDev -41.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

First time I've seen this in the LA area so it was a must pick up. Poured the 12 oz brown bottle into a stemmed tulip glass. It forms a tan head that falls to rings and leaves scattered lace. Ehh ok.

My first impression was this must be a milk stout? Ok so I'm tripping over mouse turds with the style but this is definitely milky in texture and flavor. Add in some slightly astringent roasted malts and you have it.

Notes: Far better porters on the market and readily available. Stick with the blueberry wheat from this brewer as its spot on.

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2007 04:08:55 | More by DogFood11
Photo of yankeeheel
yankeeheel

Maine

2.15/5  rDev -38.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours a dark brown with a nice two figer tan head. Nice bit of lacing that remains for the length of the brew.

Smells very, very weakly of coffee.

Tastes weak and washed out. Like drinking coffee that's watered out. No hazelnut to speak of. Minimal hop and a hint of burned aftertaste. Yum.

Way overbubbly and annoying in the mouth. Worsened by the weak taste.

Drinkability...yea.

Serving type: on-tap

02-14-2004 00:28:03 | More by yankeeheel
Photo of morebeergood
morebeergood

Massachusetts

2.15/5  rDev -38.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Grabbed a pint last night at the Sports Depot in Allston. I have never seen this on tap before (that should have been a hint). Pours a light brown color. Thin head. Slight carbonation for the standard porter. Smell was super sweet, like a cappuccino. Taste was just downright gross. Reminded me of taking a huge gulp of some kind of grocery store hazelnut coffee creamer. No porter flavor at all. Just sticky hazelnut. No balance whatsoever. Very hard to drink. A mistake to order, and a struggle to drink. This beer should be poured into coffee, or poured down the drain.

Serving type: on-tap

04-10-2009 21:28:30 | More by morebeergood
Photo of witflee
witflee

Ohio

2.25/5  rDev -35.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured with a relatively experienced hand into a clean beer glass, and GET OUT OF THE WAY, this grew the biggest, thickest head I've seen since high school. In fact, the head is still going strong twenty minutes later. Nice-looking shaving cream, I mean, beer foam, but I have never seen a porter produce a head that rivaled a pilsner's. Stick a nose in, hmmm, good chocolate milk aroma, and is that latex paint with isopropyl rubbing alcohol? I hope not. Mouth, whadda you say? Sipped a thick mouthful, there is a strong sizzle of medicine and alcohol, carbonated coffee, and a cruel aftertaste like sucking on a dirty zinc coin. But do I give up? No, I persevere, I am a fool for porters... and in the end I am unimpressed, and a little queasy, too. Sad, you can't trust a smiling dog wearing a fisherman's rain slicker.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2006 22:02:55 | More by witflee
Photo of emakings
emakings

Puerto Rico

2.25/5  rDev -35.3%

02-10-2014 22:30:33 | More by emakings
Photo of terrabyte
terrabyte

Wisconsin

2.48/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours out dark brown. The head was a very short white foam that disappeared fast.

Smells a little bit floral and cherry. Although it also reminds me of some of the phenlys from bad malt liquors or the extra alcohol from Dog Head 120 Minute IPA. No nutmeg that I can tell.

Flavor was completely lacking of nutmeg. I'm a big fan of nutmeg coffee and I've also had good nutmeg flavored beers. So this either was a bad bottle, my tonuge is dead, or people are reading too much into their labels when reviewing this beer. Other than that, this taste like that last swallow of coffee at the bottom of the cup. Too cold, and weak.

Mouth has a tiny fizzy carbonation to it, affecting the front lips. (Nothing big like creamy foam in the middle, etc)

Front top to bottom, I didn't like this beer. I wouldn't seek it out, or try another.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2006 04:33:42 | More by terrabyte
Photo of Zakk
Zakk

Florida

2.5/5  rDev -28.2%

08-14-2012 01:40:55 | More by Zakk
Photo of SilentSabre
SilentSabre

North Dakota

2.5/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Wow. This began doing a wonderful job impressing me. It poured a very dark, deep reddish brown colour with nearly no head at all. It had decent lacing. It smelled largely of hazelnuts, and moderately of coffee with a tiny bit of smoke hiding in the back. "Positively delicious", I was thinking. What a rude surprise for me when I took a sip. Very bitter. Absolutely none of the hazelnut smell is present in the taste. No coffee. Nothing. It's just very bitter and bland and doesn't really taste like much of anything. The mouthfeel is very disappointing, as it is quite thin and lifeless. This is a terrible disappointment all together, actually, as the appearance and smell had me very excited indeed, and then culminated into this. Perhaps someone out there enjoys this, but as for me, I'll stay away from it in the future.
Blessed Be
-SS

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2006 05:28:52 | More by SilentSabre
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
GratefulBeerGuy

New Hampshire

2.53/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

This is a light looking Porter, dark brown but a ruby red hue shines through too easily, giving a mahogony color. Well, carbonated with a thin, stagnant foamy cover.

Honestly, the added hazlebut ingredient really dominates the nose. There is still a decent malty scent with some oatie aroma's, very nutty, dark bitter chocolate and zesty-ish hops.

First off, the body is crisp and sharp feeling but very thin for the style. The first flavor that hits the buds is a chalky, baker's chocolate with oats and wheat. Then it all gets washed away by the hazlenut additive. It's a crazy, sweet nuttiness from then on. The additive flavor mutates into a lingering bitter, slightly metallic finish. The worst part is the lingering, bitter aftertaste.

There's too many really good Porter's out there for this too be chosen again.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2009 17:47:26 | More by GratefulBeerGuy
Photo of Naes
Naes

New York

2.53/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This porter pours almost black with brown highlights. It has a two inch tan head that retains and laces well.
The aroma is hazelnut upfront with some caramel malt in the background.
The flavor starts out with a strong hazelnut presence and is followed by a bit of roastiness and a slight vanilla flavor. Overall, it is just too sweet for my likings.
Mouth feel is medium in body and generously carbonated.

I think the hazelnut flavoring is just a bit over the top.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2006 01:40:50 | More by Naes
Photo of barleywinefiend
barleywinefiend

Washington

2.53/5  rDev -27.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

They must be recipe sharing with Kennebunkport Brewing because it tasted almost the same...not a good thing either. Poured dark brown in appearance with a decent head. Smell was unspectacular...some hazelnut presence with malty notes. Taste was only average with some undiffrentiated malt presence and a slight finishing bitterness. Roasted malts was there but that about it. Watery and thin. Mouthfeel was medium and unspectacular. Didint realy want to finish mine.

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2008 00:47:17 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of bthompuz
bthompuz

Washington

2.58/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A – very dark with some ruby highlights, not as dark as some porters, creamy head that lingers

S – hazelnut flavor, smells almost artificial or chemically, some roasted malt smell, but the hazelnut really dominates everything else

T – like the smell the hazelnut dominates, little to no hop flavor or bitterness, some bitterness from the roasted malt, only aftertaste is the hazelnut

M – medium mouthfeel, seems a little light for a porter, but fine

D – I wish they had dialed back a little bit on the hazelnut, it works well with this beer, but I would have preferred to taste something beside just that. I am glad I tried it, but cannot see having another.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2006 02:29:14 | More by bthompuz
Photo of Pintofbrown
Pintofbrown

Iowa

2.6/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance: Very dark ruby body with ruby highlights. Everything through the glass is only a rough outline. The tawny head is very fizzy and soft. It gets to about 1 finger and then breaks down quickly, lacing on the side of the glass is soapy and also has a problem sticking around.

Smell: It is a mix of bread malts and hazelnut flavor. There are some hints of brewed coffee. Also get the suggestion of milk and caramel malts. Not picking up any hop profiles.

I think this smell works out pretty well. It is really, really sweet. More like a hazelnut cappuccino really than a beer. It makes me wonder if this is going to translate well in the tasting.

Taste: Astringent. That is the first word that comes to mind. This is waaay too harsh. Honestly, if you’ve ever brewed coffee in a dirty coffee pot and thought it smelled all right, right up until that first sip, that is what this reminds me of. Dang.

Hazelnut in the flavor? No. There is a sort of hazelnut in the aftertaste. But it is backed up by and almost overwhelmed by an earthy and completely unappetizing burnt coffee flavor. There are also notes of alcohol in a 5.7% alcohol beer. What?

Absolutely everything that smells good on the nose is not in the drink.

Mouth feel: Watered down and way too bitter.

Overall: This is my first Sea Dog brew and I am not really happy. Very few things make me as grumpy as drinking a bad beer. This definitely counts. Look, the nose on the hazelnut porter is pretty good. It is sweet, there is hazelnut, and it makes you want to drink it, but once you do you almost immediately feel tricked.

This beer needs to be smoothed out, the malts need to be much more pronounced, and the hazelnut really needs to be there. And the smoky porter flavor they are going for just ends up tasting like a bad batch of coffee.

I really wish I was exaggerating, and I really wish Sea Dog had made this interesting sounding beer work.

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2011 23:15:47 | More by Pintofbrown
Photo of malcontent
malcontent

Illinois

2.6/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

When poured, Riverdriver doesn't yield the opaque, black liquid that some others do, but rather a dark brown that has a reddish glow to it (because light is getting through, I assume). Decent head & overall a nice-looking beer.

Hazelnut & coffee dominate the nose but there are roasted malt & faint hop scents in there, too. Smells like what it says it is. So far so good.

Nope. Not doing it for me. This seems like a stab at the sweet-style porter that Anchor (who does a far superior job with it) makes but instead falls flat on its face. The tastes are clumsily packed in there like they had bottles of flavoring & just poured them in as if on a check list; "Coffee? Check. Roasted Malt? Check. Hazelnut? Oh, sh*t! I dropped the whole godamned bottle in!"

Too syrupy in consistency for me & after not digging the taste I couldn't see myself having more than one. In fact, I couldn't see myself having another one, period.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2006 16:37:19 | More by malcontent
Photo of Jayli
Jayli

Massachusetts

2.63/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer pours a a deep dark brown with a big brown/tannish colored head with moderate retention and wispy lacing kept on the sides. The nose is of slight hazlenut, not as much as one would expect, some malts, a bit of cream, and a bit bready. Taste is of hazlenut, bitter chocolate, and a touch of caramel. There is also something off in the taste - perhaps it's the way they were blended, but it leaves a lot to be desired. Mouthfeel was quite light almost watery, bitter sweet aftertaste to it. I have had better porters, and if you are looking to kick back with a good porter, I would suggest looking to a different option.

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2009 01:01:04 | More by Jayli
Photo of donkeyrunner
donkeyrunner

Massachusetts

2.68/5  rDev -23%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Dark brown colored with a thin beige head that quickly fades into an amoeba looking skim. Freshness dated, the bottle claims "porter with natural hazelnut flavor added."

Smell is of those single serving hazelnut flavored coffee creamers that one finds with gas station coffee. Light roasty malt in there too.

Taste is robust hazelnut roastyness up front, in the middle, and at the end...kind of a one trick pony. Flavor progressively dissapears as beer warms. Mouthfeel is thin and over carbonated.

When I think of Sea Dog I think of yellow fizzy fruit beer and this is a porter version of that.

Serving type: bottle

02-23-2009 23:11:51 | More by donkeyrunner
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

2.68/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep reddish brown color with a large foamy off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass. It looks good, but I think it all goes downhill from there.

S: The aroma is kind of faint but contains caramel, hazelnuts and coffee.

T: The taste is malty and smoky with flavors of coffee, caramel and hazelnuts but there's a metallic bite that throws it all off. It's not as sweet as I had expected, which is a good thing, but it does start to come on a bit as you continue to drink it. There's mild hops presence that is about at the level you would expect from a porter. The after-taste is slightly bitter.

M: Crisp and a little smooth, medium body, medium-to-high carbonation, sticky finish.

D: A little tasty, goes down ok, slightly filling, decent kick, not the best representation of style, the hazelnut flavor seems like a good idea, but it doesn't seem to do much for this particular beer. I didn't get anything out of this beer that would make me want to drink it again.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2008 06:08:42 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of semihobo
semihobo

Michigan

2.7/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12 oz best by Jan 07. Okay, "natural flavor" added, but I'm open to these sorts of things.

Okay tan head. Dark chocolate mahogany, adequate retention, looks a little thin and clear but otherwise solid.

Smell is mostly hazelnut, with some chocolate, and a touch of some sort of cigarette, I think a menthol (I swear it's the first description that came to mind and the most accurate), but in a pleasant way. Not too sweet, the nuttiness is true. Put my nose in the beer trying to get the subtleties and sniffled beer onto my new khakis. Damn. Oh sweet, they are the liquid resistant kind.... oh life is good.

Not as dominantly sweet or nutty as I expected. The roasted malts and respectable hop presence give it a little edge complicated by a slightly chemical twinge. Definitely tastes like hazelnuts, although they aren't really special; the flavor probably works better than brewing with real nuts. Very slightly sweet but avoided the sugarbomb trap to which many flavored beers fall prey, could maybe use a little more sweetness though. Watery. Really, a lot like black hazelnut coffee -- too bad for me I take my coffee with sugar and cream, but for the people out there who drink nutty coffee, you could drink this before work!

Thin, watery mouthfeel with some gas to it. Off-taste on the finish.

Eh I thought it was okay at first but it got old fast. I'm waiting for a beer with natural flavor added to really punch through, it's tricky but I think it can be done. This would make a go-to nutty porter ... if you're into that sort of niche. Worth trying though.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2006 06:56:15 | More by semihobo
Photo of akajimmyd
akajimmyd

District of Columbia

2.7/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer has a big hazelnut aroma. Dark brown color and not much head. The taste is pretty bitter. Actually this tastes like a average porter with a shot of sweet hazelnut syrup dropped in it (like at starbucks.) The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a somewhat sticky aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2007 02:06:22 | More by akajimmyd
Photo of Grundle20
Grundle20

Ohio

2.73/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

*Note: I'm not somebody who likes to give a beer a bad review and I tried to keep this from being "Trollish" but I truly did not enjoy this beer.*

Appearance:
Pours a a deep dark brown in to a pint glass. There is a big brown eggshell colored head with moderate retention but no lacing to speak of.

Smell:
I can't really candy coat for this brewery anymore despite my Portland roots. This smells like hazelnut yuck. I can't quite pin what the underlying scent is but my first thought is wet rotting wood but it isn't pleasant and its definitely trying to be hidden with a hazelnut scent. The hazelnut seems more like an afterthought then a carefully thought out flavor addittion.

Taste and Mouthfeel:
Again it tastes hazelnutty but it really seems like it's trying to hide something unimpressive. It seems like they finished the beer and didn't like the way it turned out so they dumped a bunch of hazelnut extract in to the bottling vat. The body is powdery and bitter with minor bittersweet chocolate in the finish leaving me with a truly less than delicious aftertaste of tree bark, and that's not a joke or a stab, it truly tastes like green woody foliage.

Drinkability:
To me porter isn't one of the more drinkable styles of beer and the fact that I'm really not enjoying this beer makes it even that much more of a struggle. It's unbalanced and has a really awkward aftertaste to boot.

Bottom Line:
I thought after the wheat and the IPA that the porter had to be better, boy was I wrong. The whole drinking experience of this beer felt like a shoddy attempt at dolling up a less than stellar porter. I'm glad that I enjoy their blueberry wheat because I really don't like having to not like a small town brewery but this just isn't that great at all.

Serving type: bottle

12-13-2006 22:41:56 | More by Grundle20
Photo of cyrushire
cyrushire

Florida

2.75/5  rDev -21%

07-17-2013 01:25:42 | More by cyrushire
Photo of Jenessa
Jenessa

Ohio

2.75/5  rDev -21%

07-13-2013 19:45:49 | More by Jenessa
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Sea Dog Riverdriver Hazelnut Porter from Sea Dog Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 274 ratings.