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Smoked Porter - Vanilla Bean - Stone Brewing Co.

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,934 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,934
Reviews: 474
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 13.14%
Wants: 76
Gots: 168 | 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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Smoked Porter - Vanilla Bean Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,934 | Reviews: 474 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of codynevels
4.5/5  rDev +16%

codynevels, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of brycevolk
4/5  rDev +3.1%

brycevolk, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of sobeleg
5/5  rDev +28.9%

sobeleg, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of mikennat
5/5  rDev +28.9%

mikennat, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of tbeq00
5/5  rDev +28.9%

tbeq00, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

westcoastbeerlvr, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of AlexM
5/5  rDev +28.9%

AlexM, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of deedlejuice
5/5  rDev +28.9%

deedlejuice, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of khumbard
4/5  rDev +3.1%

khumbard, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of sbricker
4/5  rDev +3.1%

sbricker, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of mater
4.5/5  rDev +16%

mater, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of claspada
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown (basically black) with brown hues and a nice one inch head with great retention and some nice lacing as it recedes.

Aromas begin with sweet vanilla that initially masks the smokiness of the orginal version. The sweetness of the vanilla with the chocolate and coffee is very nice. Slight smoke emerges as it warms.

The tastes begin with vanilla upfront and in full force to the point that it is really really sweet not at all like the regular version. The smoke is completely gone when cold but as the beer warms it shows up but just in trace amounts. The backend carries some chocolate and coffee.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation and real silky feel to it.

Overall I really enjoyed this beer which I was surprised about. I hate smoke beer and only agreed to try this because someone I trust recommended it to me. The vanilla almost completely changes this beer from the original to the point where if I tasted them side by side I would never think they were the same base beer. Nice to sample and would have more often if it was commercially made. Recommended if you can find it.

claspada, Nov 09, 2011
Photo of billshmeinke
3.38/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at Beachwood BBQ & Brewing in the LBC.

Very dark brown, almost black. Some amber hues at the esges. One finger of off white head. Great lacing and retention.

Smells of smoke dark malt and some vanilla extract.

Taste is just a big blast of vanilla up front, then some dark roasted malt, flavors are almost cola like.

Mouthfeel seems a bit thin despite good carbonation, kinda plays up the impression of cola like flavors.

Interesting, but the vanilla is a little too much. I'd recommend it to anyone with a serious sweet tooth and love of vanilla though.

billshmeinke, Nov 04, 2011
Photo of HopHead84
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4


A: Dark brown with a reddish tinge near the edges.

S: Aromatic vanilla blends with dark chocolate and roasted malt. Smoke is light and redolent of beech wood.

T: Roasted malt with a pervasive beech wood smokiness and a pronounced vanilla bean flavor. The vanilla is pretty awesome with this beer. Chocolate is evident.

M: Medium body with upper moderate carbonation.

Overall: An improvement upon an already good beer.

HopHead84, Oct 31, 2011
Photo of MrTopher
3.78/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this from the brewery, served in a pint glass.

A – Pours a dark brown, almost black but not into the abyss. Nice off white head resonates and adds a decent lacing as its enjoyed.

S – The nose on this beer isn’t 100% in the open, there is some roast and a faint smell of vanilla, but its very faint. Always waiting for more, but never built up to anything.

T – Rich dark malt that I have come as the standard from Stone Smoked Porter, and then suddenly you get that mild hint of Vanilla. And the vanilla adds just a very mild and simple sweetness. Flavor makes up for the smell dramatically.

M – Very balanced nothing overly thick or thin, right in the middle.

O – Do I like this more than the standard SP, maybe… Just the addition of the vanilla makes it a little more complex and adds something really nice. Would be nice if they Bourbon Barrel Aged this version and then bottles it and added it to the 500ml series.

MrTopher, Oct 24, 2011
Photo of Spider889
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Black, thin, with a finger of sandy head. Nice spidery lace.

Smells like vanilla soft serve with very light smoke, and some blackened malt.

Tastes goddamn delicious. Smoke comes through much more than in the aroma, though I would really like to see this beer get even smokier. Ash also presents itself, but the vanilla bean in king. This tastes like Breyer's French Vanilla ice cream with some mild toasty chocolate flavor on the back end.

Medium body to this porter, thin texture, with a bit of dull bitterness. The alcohol seems a bit boozy for the mere 6% abv. The vanilla also adds an oily character to the beer.

Overall I felt that this was an awesome example of what vanilla can do for a beer.

Spider889, Oct 05, 2011
Photo of adamette
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Live review. Poured on tap at Winking Lizard in Peninsula, Oh for $4.60 into a clean, clear pint glass.

A Very dark brown body that I cannot see through under a creamy, light brown head. Look is pleasing. Great lacing on the inside of the glass after repeated sips. 4.0

S Not much smell at all. Really, repeated sniffs reveal very little information. The faintest dark roast malt and no vanilla beans like I had been hoping to smell. 2.0

T Very good porter taste of dark roast malt balanced with a nice pleasing vanilla sweetness. I really enjoy the taste of this beer. 4.5

M Moderate thickness. I think that I would have appreciated a little bit more smoothness or creaminess to the feel. It is a bit thin. 3.5

D Because of the ultimately pleasing taste this is an easy drinker. Also the manageable ABV of 5.9% makes it easy to handle repeated pints. 4.5

Notes: Glad that I got to try this one, my first “Vanilla Bean” beer.

adamette, Sep 23, 2011
Photo of metter98
4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Blind Tiger Ale House, New York, NY

A: The beer is very dark amber (near black) in color and poured with a half finger high beige head that died down and left some lacing on the surface and a ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of vanilla bean in the nose.
T: The initial taste has notes of smoke, but this quickly transitions to lots of flavors of vanilla, which persist through the finish, which also has a hint of sweetness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and somewhat smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is rather easy to drink because the alcohol is well hidden and the sweetness and vanilla flavors are balanced enough from being overpowering.

metter98, Sep 18, 2011
Photo of beerpirates
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap @ moeder lambic " zwanze day "

a - Pours a dark black folor with one inch of off white head and light carbonation evident.

s - Smells of vanilla beans, roasted malts, and chocolate. Vanilla dominates the nose, but I really enjoy it.

t - Tastes of vanilla, roasted malts, and chocolate, with vanilla dominating again. A little bit of smoke, but not too much.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation.

d - A pretty easy drinking vanilla smoked porter. This was one of the surprises of the night for me. I thought it smelt and tasted great, though I didn't get a whole lot of smoke thanks to the vanilla. Would definitely try again.

beerpirates, Sep 17, 2011
Photo of nrbw23
4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours pretty much a black color with a touch of red around the edges. A solid little head of tan foam. Head has pretty solid retention and leaves some spotty lacing at best.

S- Roasted malts, chocolate, and a bit of hops. The smoke is toned down quite a bit in this one from the regular version. Vanilla is here but not as much as I expected.

T- Ok there is the vanilla much more noticeable in the taste and I'm digging this. The smoke is taken back probably several notches. A touch of coffee and a bit of hop bitterness.

M- Fuller side of medium in body and carbonation was pretty nice.

O- I really enjoyed this one, so much that I ordered a second.

nrbw23, Sep 09, 2011
Photo of mattcrill
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Aroma: Nice light cocoa aroma up front. Very light sweet vanilla notes. No fruity esters. Not detecting any smokey or any other porter-like characteristics.

Appearance: Dark brown with shoe leather highlights. Sticky off-white head that retains well.

Flavor: Pleasant soft-vanilla and cocoa notes persist as in the aroma. Bittersweet chocolate character is the theme throughout. Earthy hop bitterness provides the understated counterpoint. Finish is clean and dry. Smokiness lingers in the aftertaste but not a punch in the face as in other smoked styles.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Slightly creamy and no alcohol character.

Overall impression: Nicely done. The smoke and vanilla provide nice accents and don't over-power the beer. I appreciated how subdued they could be and still highlight the amazing quality and drinkability of this beer. Well done.

mattcrill, Sep 04, 2011
Photo of Hoptometrist
3.05/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served on tap into a nonic glass at the Winking Lizard

A- Poured black with a one finger frothy head that left some lace

S- Very potent aroma, big vanilla, lavender, and floral notes. No chocolate or coffee

T- A ton of vanilla, lavender, floral, and perfume like flavors with a little bit of smoke on the finish

M- Pretty thin for a porter and overcarbonated for my taste in the style

O- This beer tasted like if a vanilla bean and lavender air freshener made love in a field of flowers. Where are the roasty notes, coffee, and chocolate? This one just did not do it for me.

Hoptometrist, Sep 02, 2011
Photo of jmeyers78
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Winking Lizard served in nonic pint glass.

A- dark brown almost black with a thin white head. Served in a chilled glass so I tried to let it warm up a bit

S - Mostly vanilla. I picked up a slight aroma of malt but not much

T- as this beer warmed up it went from a mostly vanilla taste that masked the underlying smoked porter to a more blended taste. This beer is much better at 55 degrees than ice cold. As the beer warmed I could taste roasted malts and the smoke but when it's cold all I could taste was vanilla. It was almost like that strange vanilla coke from a few years back.

M - Nice creamy, thick mouthfeel. Stone usually gets this right on their beer.

O - I really wished this would've been served warmer. I spent a third of the glass really thinking Stone missed the mark. After it warmed up I really began to enjoy it.

jmeyers78, Sep 01, 2011
Photo of DTJPPR
4.28/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tasting notes from 08-26-2011, in a growler from Stone the same day.

A - Poors the usual dark, almost black color with a decent 1.5 finger brown head that fades slowly and leaves nice lacing.

S - Light hints of vanilla and coffee on the nose, very nice. Also some malty, biscuity scents that compliment the vanilla quite well.

T - The scent of this beer hints largely to what it tastes like. There is a strong coffee and vanilla flavor mixed with a bit of biscuity, almost graham cracker flavor. There is just a hint of smokiness on the back end that combines to make the beer taste like a Mud Pie. In fact, that's pretty much the perfect way to describe this beer, especially when it is served closer to room temperature. The coffee and vanilla dominate mostly everything, but some of the maltiness pushes through near the end. It is very nice, almost like an ice cream float mixed with beer(which I understand is where the idea came from).

M - Has a decent, heavy mouthfeel and is decently carbonated like most Stone brews.

O - This is a fantastic idea for a beer, and I kept on drinking it through the night after my initial tasting notes. Very easy to drink, and easy to tuck into a whole 2-liter growler full of the stuff. Although the smokiness is gone, and I agree with other folks on here that maybe they should take the word "smoked" off of the beer, but I also understand that this is one of their special editions, so I can't base it truly to the original. I enjoyed drinking this one and am likely to get another fill next time its available.

DTJPPR, Aug 28, 2011
Photo of DarthKostrizer
4.45/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Cask at Churchill's

Look: Black with brown laces on top and bottom a beautiful 1 inch head with great retention and some nice lace

Smell: The sweetness from the vanilla completely masks the smokiness that I love about the orginal version but the sweetness of the vanilla with the chocolate and coffee is amazing

Taste: Vanilla is upfront and in full force to the point that it is really really sweet not at all like the regular version. The smoke is completely gone when cold but as the beer warms it shows up but just in trace amounts. The backend carries some chocolate and coffee

Mouthfeel: Medium body with medium carbonation and real silky feel to it. Perfect

Overall: Really good beer but all the orginal version is missing. Is that a bad thing no but I was hoping that the vanilla would blend better with the smoke instead of just hiding it.

DarthKostrizer, Aug 26, 2011
Smoked Porter - Vanilla Bean from Stone Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 1,934 ratings.