Smoked Porter - Vanilla Bean - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Smoked Porter - Vanilla BeanSmoked Porter - Vanilla Bean

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BA SCORE
87
very good

1,995 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,995
Reviews: 479
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 12.89%
Wants: 84
Gots: 198 | FT: 14
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: MiScusi on 08-31-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,995 | Reviews: 479 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Furlinator:
Photo of Furlinator
3.66/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours opaque very dark brown with 1/2 inch of eggshell head that settles to a moderate cap on top and leaves heavy spots of lace.

Smell is of burnt wood and faint vanilla up front with a hint of hoppy bitterness on the finish.

Taste starts with charred dark malt and bitter hops followed by hints of dark chocolate and vanilla.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with high carbonation.

I'm not picking up very much vanilla in this one. I'd like for the vanilla flavor to jump out and separate this version from the original smoked porter. Still, a solid enough effort.

More User Reviews:
Photo of philbe311
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - A standard pour yields just shy of three fingers worth of billowing slightly late to develop rich creamy light khaki colored frothy goodness... Rock star retention... The frothy goodness turns even creamier as it settles a bit, but it never disappears or approaches anything close to lacing... A light to moderate bit of spry carbonation streaks can be seen around the top of the glass... The color is a highly murky slightly brooding medium brown... A good bit of lacing clings to the glass... This is a very nice looking brew...

S - The nose is equal part vanilla bean ice cream and lightly roasted malty goodness... The two aroma ebb and flow and compliment one another very nicely... The next layer reveals hints of sweet milk chocolate and a faint whiff of freshly brewed coffee... Very pleasing...

T - Tastes a lot like I remember the base Stone Smoked Porter tasting... The vanilla bean addition is largely missing in action... This isn't a bad thing as the base beer is one of my favorites, but it's a wee bit disappointing... Roasted malt and light smoke dominate the flavor profile... I would be very curious to do a side by side comparison with the base beer to see how they actually differ...

M - Medium bodied... Lush and creamy to start before turning a bit drier with a chalky finish... Limited carbonation... Fairly smooth... Even and consistent...

D - Another outstanding offering from Stone... The appearance is world class... The aroma is excellent... The taste is outstanding but lacking in terms of the vanilla bean addition... The mouthfeel is slightly above average... An excellent beer, but the absence of vanilla on the palate is a shame... I would drink again and would love to do the side by side tasting with the other Stone Smoked Porter offerings...

Photo of SoCalBeerBabe
1/5  rDev -74.2%

At first sip gave it away. Bleh. I don't know who can drink this. I thought it sounded interesting, but it was totally unappealing.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Stone's usual brash demeanor takes a more delicate stride with the vanilla coat that adorns their ever popular Smoked Porter.

The beer pours like many other porters; with a dark brown color and delicate creme that gives the dark ale a very espresso-like appearance. Capped by the dainty off white foam that's fueled by carbonation, the beer trails with subdued islands of lace.

But a visit to the nose brings something different- the coffee and chocolate notes that are familiar to porters are complemented by the unmistakable and savory veil of vanilla and campfire. Where the mild smoky notes bring about a spice complexity, the vanilla soothes the senses and evokes a calming response to the nose.

The love affair that the smoky coffee flavor and vanilla companionship provide a masculine and feminine taste that plays out on the semisweet malt base of slightly scorched molasses, light taste of malted milk, and bittersweet chocolates. Toast, walnut oils, and coconut play out underneath the firm malt underpinnings and the decoration of smoke and cream.

Mild to texture, somehow the palate expects more fullness, richness, and viscocity. But the low-lying carbonation allows the ale to rest weightedly on the palate for full appreciation of flavor for a semi cask-like effect. A patient transition across the middle palate lands at the finish with a light mouthfeel of silk and mint-like alcohol warmth.

Although the vanilla provides a soothing effect to the otherwise masculine porter, the mouthfeel keeps me yearning for an imperial version of this beer. But its effortless palate and high rate of drinkability more than make up for it.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.05/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

On cask for Churchill's Renaissance at Churchill's Pub & Grille in San Marcos, CA.

Pours a clear dark brown with a tan head that settles to an oily film. No lacing on this one. Smell is of smoked malt, nutty aromas, and slight vanilla bean. Taste is of smoked malt and smoked meat with a very subtle vanilla note on the finish. This beer has a low level of carbonation and is somewhat flat. Overall, this is a pretty average beer that I was expecting much more from. The vanilla beans are very hard to locate in both the aroma and flavor of this beer.

Photo of oberon
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poures a roasted nut brown with a thinner somewhat creamy off white head atop,the color seems to be a bit lighter than an avergae porter.Aromas are smoked and somewhat earthy with the vanilla pretty faint and in the background.The vanilla flavors are more pronounced on the palate intermingling nicely with the dryer,lighter earthy/smoked flavors.A fuller creamy feel is nice but I have to admit I was expecting a little more from this beer,I would have liked more vanilla in the aromas and a little more smoke on the palate.In saying that it's still pretty damn good,Stone is held in real high regard from me.

Photo of davemarc87
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of tectactoe
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of MadScientist
4.16/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A dark brown with good clarity. The head is persistant and made of compact, light-tan bubbles.

S: The moderate aroma of the vanilla about even with the coffee, chocolate and malt sweetness of the porter, the smoked aroma is up there too but it comes in a bit behind the two main aromas. No hops to speak of in the nose.

T: The moderately-strong smoke steps it up in the taste slightly dominate the moderate vanilla and malt flavors of coffee, chocolate and a touch of toffee. There is a moderate hops bitterness with a moderate malt sweetness having a balance that is slightly towards the bitter. The finish is medium and the aftertaste is of smoke, coffee and malt bitterness.

M: A medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation and a bit of creaminess.

O: A flavor packed bottle that isn't too rich but would go well with dessert. A decent amount of smoke in the flavor.

Photo of npala86
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of Tiernan
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of tbryan5
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of TimBeaulieu
2.5/5  rDev -35.6%

Photo of BubalooBrewMaster
2.23/5  rDev -42.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I honestly can say that this beer is on my "avoid" list.I recently tried clown shoes ganghis pecan.With all that roasted and smoked characters it really gave the beers a taste that my pallet just won't forgive.To each their own.But for this guy I have to give it a fail.

Photo of sabitu
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of danthehopslamman
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of Brauntasaurus
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of csmartin6
4.5/5  rDev +16%

Photo of warnerry
3.68/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours deep brown with two fingers of creamy looking tan head. Head has good retention and leaves nice lacing.

S - Lots of vanilla in the nose, along with coffee, cocoa and faint smoke.

T - There is more smoke in the taste, but vanilla is still the most prevalent taste, along with coffee. The vanilla flavor is a nice complement for the base beer, but it seems a bit heavy handed here. Not bad, but a bit too much vanilla. The finish turns earthy and smoky with a bit of char.

M - Medium mouthfeel with some lingering earthy bitterness. Carbonation seems about right.

O - Pretty good, but I don't have much desire to have it again. I wish the vanilla were a bit more subtle.

Photo of Beaver13
3.2/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle. Pours brown with a medium rocky light tan head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is some chocolate malts, smoke and perfumey vanilla.

The flavor is sweet vanilla followed by an acidic charry bitter smokiness in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, interesting, but the sweet vanilla didn't blend well with the acidic bitter smoke to me.

Photo of Shagator
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of mikechance
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from a 12 oz bottle purchased 11/20/12

A --- dark, thick and 1/4 inch head

S --- smoke, vanilla and

T --- lots of vanilla and malts. The smokiness is downplayed which I enjoy in this pairing.

M --- light to medium body and carbonation

O --- very good! I try to match food with smoked porters, but I could drink this one by itself.

Photo of megamass
3.25/5  rDev -16.2%

Photo of Jason
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz brown bottle with no freshness date

LOOK: Dark brown hue, clear, ample tan head

SMELL: Vanilla, cocoa, mild char, dried grass, ghost-like smokiness

TASTE: Burnt grain, very smooth, mild smokiness, coffee grounds, kiss of vanilla, hint of alcohol, nutty, moderate hoppiness, ashy burnt finish

Trying this again after over a year, perhaps my palate changed or the beer was tweaked a bit ... flavors seem to mesh well together. Worth a go.

Photo of Billolick
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Happy to track down a 12 ounce bottle of this much sought after nectar. No bottling date or other freshness info offer, but the consumer is encourage to "Enjoy Fresh" I do not have to be told twice.

The pour is dark brown, dark tan head, and leaving decent fine lacing.

The nose is of milk chocolate, and of course, vanilla.

Notes of more chocolate, darker, smoky grains and moderate sweetness, provided by the vanilla infusion.

Very smooth, light and creamy in the mouth.

Ehh, not really my favorite. One and done for me.

Best application would be as a dessert beer, for example with a decadent chocolate cake and vanilla ice cream, so sounds pretty damn good actually.

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Smoked Porter - Vanilla Bean from Stone Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 1,995 ratings.