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Smoked Porter - Vanilla Bean - Stone Brewing Co.

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

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very good

1,886 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,886
Reviews: 472
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 12.85%
Wants: 62
Gots: 154 | FT: 15
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: 1,886 | Reviews: 472 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of thagr81us
3.83/5  rDev -1.5%

Had at the Stone Tap Takeover in Charlotte. Served from tap into a tumbler. Poured dark dark brown with a minimal off-white head. There was no lacing evident throughout. The aroma was comprised of roasted malt, vanilla, and subtle hop. The flavor was of roasted malt, vanilla bean, and a slight hop hint. It had a medium feel on the palate with low carbonation. Overall this was a nice enjoyable brew. I really liked the vanilla aspect to it. The hop note on the followthrough was quite nice and seemed to tie the vanilla bean into a nicely balanced brew.

thagr81us, Oct 12, 2010
Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.2/5  rDev +8%

Appearance: Displays a reasonably clear, dark brown body capped by a modest bone white head.

Smell: Nicely fragrant vanilla top note atop scents of light cocoa powder, mild roast coffee, and smokey peat.

Taste: Dark maltiness with taste of dark whole meal bread and hints of cocoa and coffee. Moderate sweetness. Vanilla coming through as a generous splash of A&W Cream Soda. A bit more coffee peeking through. Very subtle earthy bitterness tucked away in the back. Dries out for the most part, leaving you with a taste of lightly roasted, toasted vanilla bean pods.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-low carbonation.

Drinkability: Smooth, pleasant, and without any hard edges. Just as the standard iteration gives you just enough smoke character, so, too, does this give you just enough vanilla.

ChainGangGuy, Oct 12, 2010
Photo of Dlish
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%

A- Pitch black with a large tan head

S- Coffee, Chocolate, Smoke, vanilla

T- The vanilla comes out a lot more in the taste, defiantly good amount of chocolate. The smokiness is not strong but comes out in the finish.

M- Good bit heavy maybe from a lighter carbonation

D- A rare and delicious treat get it whenever possible.

Dlish, Oct 09, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
4.2/5  rDev +8%

From 10/04/10 notes. Had on tap at Churchkey in DC at the Stone Tap Takeover event. Unfortunately this was the only version of the smoked porter I got to try.

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.

mdfb79, Oct 07, 2010
Photo of Thorpe429
3.73/5  rDev -4.1%

On tap at Churchkey.

Pours near black and has very little head or lacing. Perhaps a bit more in that department than the chipotle version. Nose is strong, strong vanilla. That's about is as nearly all the smoke and roast are overwhelmed. Taste is similarly unbalanced, although I won't complain, as it is quite a nice flavor. Mouthfeel is medium with good carbonation. Drinks fairly well. Nice and refreshing....would be a great dessert beer.

Thorpe429, Oct 05, 2010
Photo of drabmuh
3.53/5  rDev -9.3%

Three smoked porters tasted side by side at Churchkey last night, regular, vanilla and chipotle. Served in a wine glass.

Beer is black / dark brown with a thin broken head of brown tiny bubbles that leaves minimal lacing on the glass. Carbonation is low, they all three looked exactly the same.

VANILLA!!! that's all I can smell, makes the beer smell super sweet like you are smelling vanilla extract.

VANILLA also wins in the palate, the beer is good and medium to light in body, easy to drink to an extent but the vanilla makes the beer VERY vanilla-y and really sweet too. Side by side with the other two, this one loses the threeway. I probably wouldn't drink it again but it was fun to have once.

drabmuh, Oct 05, 2010
Photo of SkunkWorks
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%

Had on tap for the Total Tap Takeover Tour at the Rattle n' Hum in NYC. Served in a pint glass.

Look: almost black with a tan head. The head retains for what seems like forever and leaves a lot of lacing behind.

Smell: very sweet vanilla smell is out front. I'm surprised at how potent that smell is. There's also the roasted malt, chocolate and coffee you would expect to get from the Stone Smoked Porter.

Taste: like drinking a milkshake. A lot of vanilla flavor in here along with the roasted chocolate and coffee tastes. There's also some smokiness.

Feel: medium bodied tending towards heavy. The best way to describe the mouthfeel of this is to say that it is like drinking a very watery milkshake. It also has a nice level of carbonation.

Drink: very high. I drank this way too fast without even meaning to.

Overall, this was my favorite beer of the night. I love Smoked Porter to begin with but its amazing how a small ingredient addition can do so much to improve something that's already insanely good! I loved this beer and will get it again if I get the opportunity.

SkunkWorks, Oct 04, 2010
Photo of BARFLYB
3.95/5  rDev +1.5%

OnTap at City Tap House during PBW 2010, from old notes I just found.

A- Stone smoked porter is a very dark beer, let's just call it pretty much black with a dark tan head up above leaving some globs of lace on the glass.

S- Smells interesting, there is a distinct roasty quality rising up backed by a sweet vanilla twinge. Roasted malt is up there and surprisingly a small hop backing that gives off a extremely light version of storm king scent. Also getting some nuts in the outlay.

T- Tasty, it's like Im drinking stone smoked porter with vanilla beans, oh wait. Roast with a small amount of smoke, milk, vanilla, small barely noticable hops in the way.

M- Gets a bit thin in this area. This is not a Baltic so there is that. Medium bodied, smooth as hell, refreshing going down, not unbearably sweet, a nice balancing act. Carbed up well off the tap.

D- I like how it's 5.9%, that way I can have another, and another. I rather liked this one.

BARFLYB, Sep 23, 2010
Photo of Lldeegan
4.3/5  rDev +10.5%

deep brown in color with frothy dense head. Some light roased coffee notes with rich vanilla. Creamy and chocolatey. Mostly the taste of vanilla and some coffee bitterness. Incredibly velvety smooth mouthfeel. One of the things that really stood out among the complex flavors.

Lldeegan, Sep 21, 2010
Photo of jrallen34
4.38/5  rDev +12.6%

On tap at Whole foods until a tulip...A dark brown pour, light tan head, ok retention and lacing...The aroma is all sweet vanilla bean, its very strong true to vanilla and not generic like most vanillas. There also is some complexity brought on the finish by some roastiness...The starts out all vanilla as well and at first its almost too much and makes me wonder if I can finish the glass. Thankfully a few more sips in the vanilla really starts to fade into a side note as the smoke starts to take over a bit. Very balanced. Easy drinker.

A great balanced beer. The vanilla is really nice, best vanilla I've had since dl vanilla bean, the smokiness finishes this in the best way.

jrallen34, Sep 17, 2010
Photo of cjacobsen
4.38/5  rDev +12.6%

Tapped into a snifter.

Poured a nice dark and thick black color with a dark tan head. Sat in the glass like a solid fill of goodness.

The smell of vanilla is strong and takes over most of the chocolate/coffee scents.

The taste is sweet, leveled with vanilla and underlying tones of roasted barley, alcohol.

Smooth on the palette. Very thick but not too overbearing.

Great porter, almost a stout and the vanilla is awesome.

cjacobsen, Sep 13, 2010
Photo of Stigs
4.08/5  rDev +4.9%

on tap at Blue Dust as part of a Big Pour event, served in a standard pint glass

A - almost an inch of intensely creamy and frothy, light tan colored foam which settles slightly yet stuck around most of the drink. the beer is very dark brown allowing just a peak of light through.

S - pungent vanilla beans, smoke comes through as both peat, smokey malts, and slightly meaty. not much to it but inviting and pleasant.

T - vanilla sweetness hits the tongue first, immediately kept in check by medium roasted malts, slightly biscuity, and some very light milk chocolate. smoked flavors slowly creep in before eventually taking over in the end.

M - medium bodied (maybe a little on the lighter side for the style) with sharp carbonation, felt like this fell apart a little at the end due to a lack of body.

D - overall, very enjoyable - one of Stone best non-hoppy offerings. great dessert beer, or a nice compliment to a number of foods. might be hard to drink more than a couple though.

Stigs, Sep 11, 2010
Photo of StJamesGate
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%

On cask at the GBBF.

Pours black-brown with a thin tan bubbly head. Vanilla nose with oak underneath. Vanilla, brown bread, brown sugar and marzipan malts cut by a dry roastiness and orange bark hops with more vanilla undertones. Light, some chew, some cling.

Totally loses the smoke, which for me was no bad thing. Maybe a bit too candy sweet, but very tasty.

StJamesGate, Aug 05, 2010
Photo of snpub540
4.35/5  rDev +11.8%

Pours an almost black hue with a creamy light khaki head. Lacing is very clingy.

Smell is of roasted malts, some tobacco, and definately vanilla. It is very smoky and intoxicating.

Very much roasted malt and coffee flavor upfront with a creamy vanilla finish. Straight forward porter flavor with intense vanilla bean flavor.

Super creamy and smooth mouthfeel. Almost velvety. Drinkability is good. Definately a sessionable beer.

snpub540, Jul 19, 2010
Photo of oglmcdgl
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%

On draft at city tap house. Last day of philly beer week. Its been a crazy ride.

A- deep dark brown almost black with a good two fingers of off white sudsy head that lasts and leaves a ton of super sticky lace.

S- sweet and roasty with the vanilla and dark bread. Simple and nice.

T- a beautiful balance of sweet vanilla and milk chocolate then rolls into the roast with some toasted dark bread and coffee.

M- less then medium in body with a higher then medium carb.

D- super flavorful with a very approachable abv. Good stuff.

oglmcdgl, Jun 13, 2010
Photo of rfgetz
4.22/5  rDev +8.5%

Pours a deep, rich dark brown, letting some light through, no head. Scent is of muted vanilla bean and light roast and char from the smoke. Taste brings a wonderful blend of the vanilla and smoke with notes of roasted coffee, sweet cream and a touch of sugar, almost like a well concocted coffe drink. Medium bodied, feels lighter as it sits, semi dry feeling and no lingering smokey aftertaste. A wonderful brew that i could drink all night.

rfgetz, Jun 11, 2010
Photo of Tiklmelmo
4.93/5  rDev +26.7%

A - Dark chocolate colored with a quarter inch of rocky tan head. Some lacing.

S - Vanilla is the first thing that hits you, but you can still smell the smoke behind it. Smells like a french vanilla iced coffee brewed over a campfire. I could smell this all night.

T - Vanilla first, followed by dark chocolate and coffee with big roasty malt flavors, finishing in just the right amount of smokiness. This is an incredibly balanced beer.

M - Creamy and medium to full-bodied. Just right carbonation.

D - Dangerously drinkable. I wish I could get this regularly.

This may be the best porter I've ever had.

Tiklmelmo, Jun 10, 2010
Photo of mcallister
4.18/5  rDev +7.5%

Damn good looking beerdeep brown with a everlasting tan head tight and whispy.

Vanilla bean comes through with hints of chocolate and bready malts. Light roasted qaulity with very littl smoke.

Great easy drinking creamy satisfying beer. Light smoke with more roasted malts coming through then a dry lingering vanilla shows from the mid palate long into the drying finish. Not overly complex bur easy on the palate and liver.

mcallister, Apr 23, 2010
Photo of Florida9
4.43/5  rDev +13.9%

On tap @ Durty Nellie's

A: Served in a pint glass. Dark brown, approaching black, in color, but still allowing just a bit of light to come through. Served with a thin layer of thick, creamy, light tan colored head. Very good lacing.

S: Surprisingly strong aroma of vanilla mixed with roasted malts that opens up even more as it warms. Smoke is very subdued.

T: Even more vanilla. Some of the roasted malts. Cola. A bit of a bitter finish. A hesitate to call this beer "dry," but it certainly is not sweet.

M: On the heavier side of medium with appropriate carbonation.

D: A great beer. A don't want to call this a novelty beer, but its a bit whacked out in the sense of the typical porter. However, it all works. The vanilla is very apparent, in both the nose and the flavor, much more than I was expecting. But it is the lack of sweetness and the light backbone of roasted malts make this beer feel a bit more "serious," allowing the vanilla to be center stage while not tasting like vanilla ice cream. For me, it was easily drinkable, and while I enjoyed it while eating nachos and a burger, I think it would be an even better dessert beer.

Florida9, Apr 07, 2010
Photo of homebrew311
4.15/5  rDev +6.7%

Had this at Durty Nellies during their Stone release party. Was quite excited about this one!

A: served in a pint glass, appears a dark brown with a bit of light passing through which appears ruby, no head

S: the aroma starts with notes of rich chocolate, subtle smokey notes, roasted barley, which is then followed by a large dose of vanilla bean...smells like some delicious vanilla ice cream... awesome aroma

T: the roast and smoke is up front again, but very subtle, then followed by a big hit of vanilla... the vanilla and roasty flavors seems to combat each other rather than meld with eachother.. never the less, this is still incredibly tasty and incorporates vanilla bean very nicely

MF: my only problem with this brew is the thin mouthfeel, I would have liked a bit more body to go with the robust flavors

D: here is a nice complex brew with an interesting aspect in the vanilla bean... the overall product is tasty and drinkable, but it could be better balanced

homebrew311, Apr 06, 2010
Photo of robbyc1
3.68/5  rDev -5.4%

On tap in Evanston for the Stone intro to IL, served a bit cold for me, 12oz for $6 not bad.

OK, look, dark with nice lace.

Very subdued nose of vanilla and smoke, nice and solid, not much from the malt but inviting.

Taste is less than expected, taste of the beer beyond the additions is more like a schwartzbier, lighter in the mouthfeel, lighter in taste, body is more like a lager than an ale.

A nice drinker for sure, but I expected more punch here, I prefer the feel of porters from the good Midwest brewers, Tyranena and Founders to name a couple. I will try the regular smoked porter, but I will probably stick with their more hoppy beers which they are known for.

robbyc1, Apr 03, 2010
Photo of samie85
4.65/5  rDev +19.5%

Had this on-tap at the Twisted Spoke Stone launch yesterday, 4/01/10. Reviewed from notes.

A-Pours very dark brown/black with a thick, brown sugar-colored head.

S-I'm getting smoke with vanilla and a bunch of chocolate and a slight roasted note. Really nice, I'm thirsty...

T-There's that hint of a roasted note upfront with loads of creamy chocolate with vanilla and finishes with a dry, dark chocolate finish.

M-This one is really smooth. Thick, full-bodied almost milk-shake like in the way that it coats your mouth; medium carbonation.

D-Wow, this is one great beer. Really easy drinking, but nice and complex without being in your face about it. Probably my favorite out of three Stone beers I tried at this event.

samie85, Apr 03, 2010
Photo of capra12
4.2/5  rDev +8%

Reviewed with friends at Mugs Ale house in BK served out of a pint glass. From notes taken 9/10/09.

Appearance: Dark brown/black with little head

Smell: Vanilla and coffee

Taste: Opens withe coffee as vanilla emerges in the middle but doenst last very long. There is a malt profile that kicks in right before the vanilla ends and last till the finish where the coffee is still prominent leaving a coffee aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied at most with minimal carbonation and oh so smooth... lol

Drinkability: I would definitely have this again and recommend this to those who seek a solid porter with a vanilla twist and coffee undertones.

capra12, Jan 13, 2010
Photo of illidurit
4/5  rDev +2.8%

On cask at The Daily Pint in Santa Monica. Poured into a Duvel tulip (for some reason). Dark clear brown with a huge fluffy cocoa head that sticks around forever. Big vanilla bean aroma with some roasted malt character. In the flavor, the roles are reversed. Roasted malt takes the center stage and the vanilla beans add a noticeable but subtle even sweetness. Just a touch of smoke/charcoal in the end. Nice dry and bitter finish. Very easy to drink, low carb due to it being on cask. Really complex and flavorful for 5.9%.

illidurit, Dec 21, 2009
Photo of younger35
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%

Just received this brew from mikedashg in a recent trade. I've been wanting to try this brew for quite some time and thanks to Mike, I'm getting the opportunity. Had the Chipotle one not long ago and it was tasty. Drank from my Surly Darkness snifter.

Review #600

Appearance- Pours a dark brownish ruby red with a very nice one finger creamy tan head. A thin cap and collar remain after the head finally dissipates along with quite a bit of spotty lacing.
Smell- The vanilla is noticeable upon first whiff but it is very light and pleasant. Not an ounce of smoke in the nose. Plenty of chocolate in the nose but other than that, just vanilla.
Taste- Starts much like the nose with a nice subtle bit of vanilla that isn't unnatural in the least. The vanilla seems to really cover the smoke for the most part because I'm not getting a shred of it. The chocolate is extra accentuated though and is somewhat dry and cocoa-ee. Finishes with a slight bit of caramel and coffee.
Mouthfeel- Nice medium body with a silky smooth feel and spot on prickly carbonation.
Drinkability- Probably the best beer I've ever had with vanilla. Usually the vanilla is either too potent or too fake. This is neither. Yes, the vanilla does take over a bit but it's not too much. Amazing how one ingredient can change a brew so much. Thanks much Mike!

younger35, Nov 21, 2009
Smoked Porter - Vanilla Bean from Stone Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 1,886 ratings.