Dark Horse Thirsty Trout Porter - Dark Horse Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dark Horse Thirsty Trout PorterDark Horse Thirsty Trout Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

365 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 365
Reviews: 84
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 9.97%
Wants: 12
Gots: 34 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-12-2003

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 365 | Reviews: 84
Photo of drpimento
3.91/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 4

Goot schtuf! Served at a good temperature with modest head that soon settles to a light cover that lasts forever and good lacing. Color is an opaque black brown. Aroma is malt, roast, dark ripe fruit, molasses, cocoa. Flavor's like nose with all the above characteristics amplified plus the integration of sweet, carbonic tang, and bitter. Body is good but carbonation seems a little light. Finish is like flavor, longish, and a touch boozy.

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

At this point I've had enough baltic porters (from both sides of the pond) to know the difference. This one is thick as it should be. That someone berry kind of robust sweetness is there. Smooth feel. Minimal carbonation. An easy drinker and a good example of the style.

Photo of jlindros
3.87/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Snowed in, time to break out the baltic porters.

Pours a very light fizzy bubbly but darker head covering that fades pretty quickly, more like a 9-10% abv beer like head, touch of lacing, pitch black beer.

Nose brings loads of chocolate, creamy milk chocolate, hot cocoa, a little expensive Belgian or Swiss creamy lush chocolate, little bakers even, etc. Some vanilla, light caramel and even a little syrupy sweetness. I think there is a hint of lactose sugar in there since it brings quite a bit of creaminess.

Taste starts with creamy flavors again, almost sure there is lactose sugar in here with the creamy milky flavor almost like a milk stout. Then chocolate but not as complex, more like milk chocolate and a little creamy Godiva chocolate filling flavor. Light caramel and sweetness, a little stout like bitterness, light vanilla too, and faint bitter hops. Finish is quite dry, bitter slightly earthy hops and stout malt bitterness, more creamy lactose and chocolate lingering.

Mouth is quite creamy and milky but feels a bit thin, esp for a 7% baltic porter... then again a baltic porter is typically has lots of malt and flavor with lesser overall beefiness to the beer, so I can't fault it for that, lighter carb though.

Overall not bad, more like a milk stout than baltic porter, but still fairly tasty and drinkable, nice robustness, just a bit light overall feel and carbonation.

Photo of DrDemento456
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

After being turned down for Plead the Fifth everywhere I am glad to come home and drink a this new Dark Horse beer. Got it from Vintage Estate for $1.99 a single.
A - Fairly dark for a porter it does have some ruby hues with a 1/4 inch of silky mocha head atop. As most of their dark brews the lacing is excellent.
S - Smell is very roasty with tones of lactose sugars, some mocha, and a touch of sweet chocolates.
T - Has everything I expected, moderate bittering hops, some coffee and burnt sugars, and a bit of milk chocolate to boot. Finish is also on par with the style slightly drying finish.
M - Quite creamy much more than the Reserve Special Black Ale. Liked the medium slick body.
Overall another great beer from Dark Horse. In a way if made me remember how good the series of the "four" beers are.

Photo of superspak
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass, bottled on 1/3/2013. Pours fairly pitch black color with a nice 1-2 finger dense khaki head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice dense soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big chocolate, roasted malt, caramel, coffee, toast, light char, molasses, light raisin, floral, and hop earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance, strength, and complexity of dark malt notes. Taste of dark chocolate, roasted malt, caramel, coffee, toast, toffee, molasses, light char, light raisin, floral, and hop earthiness. Light earthy coffee bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, roasted malt, caramel, light coffee, toast, toffee, light raisin, floral, and earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and robustness of flavor with good complexity; and zero cloying flavors present after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a creamy and smooth mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with only a slight warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a very nice porter. Very nice flavor balance and robustness; and very smooth to sip on. A very enjoyable offering.

Photo of StoutHunter
4.37/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a bottle of Dark Horse's Thirsty Trout Porter last week for $1.89 at The Lager Mill. I have always wanted to try this beer but I've never made the trip down to Dark Horse, so i'm happy they decided to bottle it, so lets see how it goes. No visible bottling date, but I know it's fairly fresh. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A- The label looks nice, it's pretty different looking and for some reason it reminds me of the band Phish. It poured a dark black color that didn't let any light come through with two fingers worth of dark tan head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and left some great sheets of lacing. This is a good looking beer, I have no complaints at all.

S- The aroma starts off with lots of roasted malts which have a higher amount of sweetness to them and impart some nice coffee, chocolate, and roasted malt aromas, the chocolate and roast seem to stick out the most. After that comes a slight bit of dark fruits with raisins seeming to stick out the most and there was also a nice and light smokey aroma with a light amount of earthy hops towards the end. This beer had a good aroma that was really true to style, nothing is out of place.

T- The taste seems to be pretty similar to the aroma and it starts off the same with loads of roasted malts that have a medium amount of sweetness to it and imparts some nice coffee, chocolate, and roasted flavors with the coffee sticking out the most this time. Up next comes a light dark fruit flavor with no one fruit really sticking out and it's followed by a nice slightly smokey and slightly charred taste on the finish with just a little bit of earthy hops that impart a surprisingly low amount of bitterness with a roasted and chocolate like aftertaste, This beer tasted very good and was very true to style, again I have no complaints.

M- Very smooth, pretty creamy, on the full side of being medium bodied with a good amount of medium carbonation. The mouthfeel was very good and it worked really well with this beer.

All in all I thought this was a very good beer and a very good example of the style, it had everything that I look for in the style, it call came together nicely with this beer and it's just how a good Baltic Porter should be. This beer had great drinkability, it was very smooth, with lots of nice roasted flavors that really held my attention and the alcohol was hardly noticeable, I wouldn't mind drinking a couple of these, it would make for a nice beer to have by the campfire, one of the most drinkable Baltic Porters I have tried. What I liked the most about this beer was how true to style it was and how drinkable it was, those aspects really made this a nice beer. What I liked the least about this beer was nothing, there was nothing that I thought was out of place or needed to be improved on. I would for sure buy this beer again when looking for a nice and roasty beer, I consider it a bargain for $1,89 and you can be sure that I will be stocking up on some in the near future, I highly recommend this to anyone who likes Porters and Stouts. All in all I was pretty impressed with this beer, it's one damn good Baltic Porter and I would put it right up there with Bridge Brew Works Baltic Porter as my favorite of the style, they are both very good but this one is a little more drinkable. Dark Horse can make some pretty damn good beers and this is no exception, I'm glad they finally decided to bottle this, it's a great addition to their lineup and it will be a great addition to my fridge, great works guys, this one's a winner.

Photo of bluejacket74
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours dark brown/black with about a half inch tan head. Head retention and lacing are both decent enough. Aroma is nice and sweet, the brew smells like roasted malt, chocolate, coffee and a bit of dark fruit. It tastes like roasted malt, bittersweet chocolate, coffee, and some licorice. The aroma is sweet, but the bitter roastiness really shows up in the taste of this brew. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit creamy and has moderate carbonation. I think this is a good brew, I'd definitely like to try it again sometime.

Photo of GRPunk
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a nonic pint.

Label simply refers to it as a "porter." At 7% ABV, I'm thinking it is straddling between the Baltic and American versions.

A- A sloppy pour made for a 1-1/2 finger brown head that looked creamy, dense. Very dark brown body. Even held to light, it suggests near black. Head retains at a solid film and leaves good stick.

S- Chocolate and coffee. Hints of berries or raisin, maybe some licorice (I hope not, I'm not a big fan). Some smoke at points. Sweeter with warmth.

T- Very roasty. French roast coffee and dark chocolate, complete with slight bitterness. A little grainy at first, pleasantly so. Rich, but no hint of alcohol at 7%. Some sweetness going on, a little brown sugar, a pack of sugar in the raw with the lightly creamed coffee?

M- Full bodied. Quite viscus. Moderate carbonation tries to keep up.

O- Edges line with robust porter (knowing its listed that way here makes some sense). Very rich flavor goes a long way in my book. Pleasant sipper in the snowy/slushy/icy weather outside. It's a winner. Not overpriced. Could become a real winter rotation beer. I'd put it up against my favorite export stouts.

Not a ton of perceived hopping. Maybe the extra week or two in the fridge took something away in that regard?

Dark Horse lives up to its name. So much good stuff coming out of sleepy Marshall MI. Maybe it's just first impression, but I love this beer.

Photo of hosehead83
3.53/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.
Mudpuddle brown, cloudy in color with a thick cap of tan foam.
Aroma-Dark malt note
Taste-Dark toasted malt, faint coffee, smooth, easy finish. More of a classic porter taste than a Baltic porter, but a nice offering none-the-less.

Photo of BB1313
3.26/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours black with barely any light getting through. Small khaki head that sticks around leaving nice film and decent lacing. Nice looking beer. The aromas are full of chocolate malts and dark fruits. There are subtle expresso aromas which can be found in the flavors as well. Although there's a roasty bitterness from the chocolate and coffee, this beer has a fairly strong fruit sweetness to it. I feel like I'm picking up some cherries giving it an extremely subtle tartness. The finish is clean and dry for the most part. Mouthfeel is very nice. Although it's light and somewhat watery, it has a nice fluffy body to it and makes for a very easy drinking beer. I'd say it's on the lighter side of medium-bodied. There's a slight creaminess to it. The alcohol goes unnoticed.

Nice example of the Baltic Porter style, but it doesn't exactly stand out. It's traditional and well executed, just a little one note.

Photo of xnicknj
3.55/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

on tap at revolution house - served in pint

Pours an opaque mahogany color with charred hues. Crop of toasted brown head slowly fades into patchy lacing on the glass.

Roasted dark malts, chocolate and a dash of smoke in the nose. Soft sweetness, nutty and a bite of warmth.

Waves of maltiness up front with soft, smooth sweetness driven by cocoa and dark chocolate. Coffee beans, roasted dark malts and caramel. Finishes with a touch of alcohol and dark sweetness.

Fuller medium body, decent carbonation, chewy and smooth on the tongue. Well-crafted, albeit fairly standard porter. I'd drink this again, but there's definitely some better ones out there.

Photo of metter98
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is jet black in color and poured with a quarter finger high dense tan head that died down, leaving a large patch of bubbles in the center and a ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of dark chocolate malts in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the the taste has has lots of flavors of dark malts along with hints of coffee beans. There is a light amount of bitterness.
M: It feels a bit more than medium-bodied and a little dry on palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer tastes a little heavier bodied compared to regular porters but is very drinkable when compared to other types of Baltic Porters.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

If the trout is thirsty, you might want to put it back in the water- fish really, really, really like it there! But as a beer goes, the Baltic porter portrays a lot of porter-ish character but plays it safe on the sweeter, fruitier, and smoother character of classic Baltic options.

Thirsty Trout opens with the typical appearance of porter: Strong dark "bark" brown with a modest haze that strictly prohibits light from emitting. A creamy blanket of lace covers the beer with solid retention and spotty lace. Where I often look for bright clarity or a depth of clarity and rubyish highlights in Baltic versions, those seem to be omitted here.

Strong, masculine aromas of coffee, chocolate, roasted nuts, and black jelly beans play out in the nose with a deeply grounded malt scent of milkshake. The roast-heavy scent begins to resemble stout, but pulls away with more cocoa and fruit complexities.

Coffee lovers should feel right at home with this beer, as the taste of Colombian and breakfast blends rise in the most bold and delicate ways. The coffee focus is backed with the flavor of bittersweet chocolates, walnut, toffee sweetness, malted milk, and a tinge of grape-like fruitiness (I doubt that I would have picked up on much of the fruitiness if the beer hadn't been described as a Baltic porter- I would have likely chalked it up to a standard American porter). Coffee-like bitterness rises in the broad and earthy wood taste to close the beer.

Medium bodied throughout, the beer's early texture relies on its malt sweetness and creamy carbonation, but the slow fade into finish brings a tad of abrasion from alcohol, grain, and hops-again, fine for standard ales, but I'm looking for a smoother lager-like mouthfeel in the Baltic porters.

Where Thirsty Trout draws in inspiration from several porter sources, it doesn't really resonate with the palate as a Baltic porter any more as it does for American porters, robust porters, or English brown porters. But it is a pleasant flavor profile that makes it a joy to drink.

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap @ HopCat. Served in pint glass.

A - Black with a small ring of white head.

S - Roast, chocolate, and light coffee. Fairly sweet overall nose.

T - Big roast profile, chocolate, some nutty flavours and a touch of coffee.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation.

Photo of jmdrpi
3.7/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

served on tap at the Dark Horse brewery pub in Marshall, MI.

appears almost black, with off-white head. nice lacing as I drink the glass. milk chocolate in the aroma. slightly roasty taste. thicker body, lower carbonation. I'd say it's to style as a Baltic Porter. I'd drink it again.

Photo of trxxpaxxs
4.38/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Dark Horse's Brew Pub in Marshall, MI...

A: Pours a super dark brown, almost black, with one full finger of mocha head that takes forever to settle down. There is minimal lacing as it drinks.

S: The nose is big chocolate, some coffee, some raisin, and a good amount of roast. The roast and chocolate seem to dominate, but the coffee and raisin aren't exactly second fiddle. It's just a good mix of all the scents.

T: This brew starts off sweet with the chocolate and coffee paving the way for some stone fruits (plums, dates, and raisin) to really shine through. It follows the nose, and all the flavors mix well.

M: Full bodied beer. It's incredibly creamy, with just the perfect amount of carbonation. I get a lingering mix of sweetness and bitterness.

O: I like this a good deal. Dark Horse seems to make stouts and porters that are geared to my taste-buds. I'd drink this again in a heartbeat.

Photo of TMoney2591
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a tumbler at The Tribes.

Memories of somehow drug-free arguments about Spongebob episodes come to mind here: How can a trout be "thirsty"? Anyway, this stuff pours a straight obsidian topped by a finger of dusty tan foam. The nose comprises chocolate (both dark and syrup), molasses, and roasted malts. This stuff smells damn fine, I tell you what! The taste holds notes of dark chocolate powder, roasted malts, light coffee, very light molasses, and a kiss of maple syrup. The body is a sorta-light-medium, with a light moderate carbonation, a generally smooth feel, and a kinda dry finish. Overall, a very nice porter, one I wish I could find regularly in bottles out here. Let's go, Dark Horse!

Photo of Sixpack595
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark, nearly opaque black body with a thin head and no lacing. Not much carbonation, but about as expected for a Growler. The pint I had at the pub was a bit more lively, but not much. Slightly toasty, coffee, malty flavor. Well balanced. Not really what I would call a Baltic porter, but a very good beer.

Photo of FightingEntropy
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First draft on site at Dark Horse, and it's a pretty good start. Poured in a pint glass right up to the rim with very little head, yet it lingers a bit. Solid coffee and malty roast in the nose with a bit of light hop as well. Very easy drinking, even in the heat of the summer swelter--mouthfeel is chewy and light at the same time--malt, coffee and roast settle and linger in the mouth--same hop spice on the tongue. Nice beer that would be better on a cooler day or with a bit more AC in the bar. This pitch black 7% porter is more than worth the effort but moved on for the next pint.

Photo of Bung
4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Hop Cat in G.R. Very murky dark brown pour. Not a substantial off white head. Sticks to the glass ever so slightly. Rich malt aroma with quite a bit of chocolate, less roast. Taste does kind of match that, with some earthy peat and tobacco, but quite a bit of molasses and chocolate. Barely enough bitterness in the finish. Just medium bodied, with adequate carbonation. The only thing preventing an excepetional in drinkability is the slight over sweetness. Otherwise, well worth trying. This had a tough road to hoe following a Founders KBS, so another good brew from Dark Horse.

Photo of Sammy
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

More of a porter slash brown than a baltic porter, on tap at Hopcat. Brown with carbonation bubbles. Average mouthfeel. Malty. Licorice brown taste. A little roast, more licorice than chocolate, and a tad coffee. Much better at the brewery, better mouthfeel..

Photo of shivtim
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is probably the only "fish-themed" beer I've ever had that was actually good. Just so you know, avoid any beer named after a muskie.
Anyway, it's a nice black with slight ruby hints and a thin brown head. Nose is malty molasses with almond, vanilla, and maybe even slight cardamom. Quite delicious! The taste is mild malts, some hops. Nowhere near the complexity of the nose. Mouthfeel is a tad thin, but drinkability is pretty good. Nice brew.

Photo of Roeters
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got a growler from Dark Horse the last time I was around.

A: Very dark brownish/black with thin white/tan head. (my pore was bad, could have had a thick inch head if I had done it right)

S: Chocolate, roasty character

T: A mix of chocolate, maltly goodness, and a great roasted flavor. Ends with a great slight bitterness from the grains.

M: great level of carbonation, with a wonderful bitterness

D: I am hoping that I do not finish the whole growler tonight, but hell that is just a good reason to make the trip right.

Photo of KC8LTL
3.98/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from Growler into Snifter glass and about an inch of creamy tan head appears. Beer itself is quite dark. When I hold it up to the light there is the slightest red that gets through bur hardly anything. Creamy smell with slight roasted coffee notes for smell - it is certainly inviting... Taste is sweet creamy with a bit of a rich fruit taste with some roasted background. Mouthfeel seems a bit thin to my taste, but admittedly this is to style. Drinkablity? Beer Me again.

Photo of Crosling
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep formulation of every color except black. Fruity, lacking aroma of dark fruits (blackberries, cherries) with scents of roasted malts and coffee. Nice underlying dark fruitiness is all over the palate, along with deep roasted malts, bitter chocolate and coffee. The coffee in particular lingers on after the swallow for seconds and is ignited once again after a simple lick from my tongue. Lacking in body and texture but still true to the style and pretty delicious.

Dark Horse Thirsty Trout Porter from Dark Horse Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 365 ratings.