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Smoked Porter - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Smoked PorterSmoked Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,938 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,938
Reviews: 1,787
rAvg: 4
pDev: 11.25%
Wants: 149
Gots: 358 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 03-18-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,938 | Reviews: 1,787
Photo of arash1000
4/5  rDev 0%

Photo of GMB
4.65/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

September 25, 2012.

Rauchbier (lit., "smoke-beer") is a style that has yet to enjoy widespread popularity among craft beer drinkers in the United States, whence yours truly writes this review. In some ways, this is not surprising he American craft beer industry and its consumer base favor hop-driven styles such as India Pale Ale. But in other ways the scarcity of smoked porters on the American beer market is surprising, for if the stylistic innovations of American breweries is any indication of the American drinking public's palate, American craft beer drinkers have grown increasingly interested in more complex and aggressive flavor profiles. Consider this along with Americans' love of barbecue and other kinds of grill-roasted meats (e.g., the hamburger), and it becomes difficult to imagine why smoked beers have yet to emerge as a popular genre in the world of craft and artisan beers.

When held against light, a deep redness shines through the dense black body of Stone Smoked Porter. A moderate pour produces a tall, cappuccino head.

The smokey aspect of this beer influences but does not overwhelm the nose. Two or three deep inhalations pick up on the expected aromas of smoked and roasted, almost charred grains. There must be something else there, but I cannot tell what it is...

The taste of this beer develops and changes as it warms and as the palate grows accustomed to it. At first, a nice mix of sweet, rich charred grains and light smoke are at the fore. The flavor of smoke lingers just enough at the back of the tongue to allow the roasted malts to come through. As the beer warms, the bitterness of the hops and alcohol, at first barely detectable, begins to assert itself, producing hints of similarly bitter flavors. Licorice and dark chocolate stand out among them.

The key to a successful smoked beer is balance. Too much smokey flavor and one is left feeling as if one were standing too close to a fire pit. Too little and one begins to suspect that one is confusing smokey characteristics with roasted malts. Stone has managed to produced a fine balance of the two.

The beer's mouthfeel is nearly perfect at first: Delicate carbonation produces a thick, creamy foam that enhances the rich roasted characteristics of the smoked malt. But the carbonation fails to survive subsequent drafts and swirls, and the last few sips fall flat.

I cannot say how Stone Smoked Porter compares with the rauchbier of Bamberg, but I can say that it strikes me as a mature, well-designed, balanced rendition of this yet under-appreciated genre. This beer is likely to please porter drinkers and barbecue aficionados alike.

Note: This beer pairs very well with dark chocolate and roasted almonds. Allow a piece of dark chocolate to coat your palate before sipping; the interplay between the chocolate and the beer's smokey malt won't disappoint.

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3.75/5  rDev -6.3%

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4/5  rDev 0%

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4.5/5  rDev +12.5%

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4/5  rDev 0%

Photo of fourthaxis
3.8/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This guy is my fill in, my backup, my plan B. Maybe living near Escondido helps, but I can find this inexpensive porter everywhere. I'm surprised it's not mailed to people homes in little sample packs. It's $4 for a great flavor and a good porter from a good brewer - I'm in!

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4.5/5  rDev +12.5%

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1.5/5  rDev -62.5%

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4/5  rDev 0%

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5/5  rDev +25%

Photo of russwbeck
4.41/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: This is an outstanding looking smoked porter. Very glad I got a picture of the pour. Three or four fingers of light brown head with huge bubbles inside, sitting atop a black pour. The retention is decent, but the lacing is outstanding, coating the sides of my Stone IRS goblet.

S: The smoke is noted on the aroma, but it isn't the major factor. Caramel and roasted malts, molasses, chocolate, and slight char. Pretty nicely balanced, but nothing is overly impressive. More on the porter side of things (I guess that's why they list it as an American Porter instead of a Smoked one), and isn't as crazy smelling as others that closely resemble bacon.

T: The balance of the taste, however, is something to write home about. It resembles the aroma, but takes it to the next level. The taste is built on a base of chocolate, caramel malts, molasses, and dark fruits that let the roast--from both coffee and malts--shine through. Sweet, complex, and smokey, this porter is one to be taken seriously.

MF: The body is lighter than most porters, with an average carbonation. The beer is silky smooth, and is top notch in terms of drinkability.

O: Stone Smoked Porter is cheap, readily available, offered year 'round, and is delicious. If you're like me and skipped picking this up every time you go on a beer run...bring that streak to an end, you'd be doing yourself a favor.

Photo of akokinakes
3.75/5  rDev -6.3%

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Smoked Porter from Stone Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 3,938 ratings.