1. American Craft Beer Fest is this weekend in Boston, Mass. Join us for 640+ beers from 140+ brewers! Tickets for Friday, May 29 are still available. Cheers!

Rapadou Porter - AleWerks Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Rapadou PorterRapadou Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

169 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 169
Reviews: 49
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 10.53%
Wants: 12
Gots: 20 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
AleWerks Brewing Company visit their website
Virginia, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: theformula on 12-17-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view more.
Ratings: 169 | Reviews: 49
Photo of pathman
5/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I give this a "5" across the board. Enough justification?

Photo of AngusOg
4.01/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I'm getting hints of something in the nose that is not quite agreeing with me, but it doesn't seem to be translating to the flavor as far as I can detect. Other than that, overall, a pretty nice, big, sweet porter.

Photo of DLS168
3.92/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle. Very dark chocolate almost black cola color 1" tan head. Very attractive / appealing presentation in glass. Fragrance of brown sugar &, chocolate. Nice mouth feel thick creamy rich. Taste is rum / porter sweet but not overly sweet. A nice desert style beer.

Photo of oberon
4.18/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark cola color with a creamy deep beige head atop.Aromas of chocolate and brown sugar,not overly sweet but appetizing.A great feel it's full and creamy wich makes it too easy to drink for the size of the beer.Chocolate and brown sugar flavors but it never gets too sweet to drink,a rich full flavored "big" porter.

Photo of DavoleBomb
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

Poured into a pint glass. Bottle.

3.75 A: Black color. Two fingers of fizzy light brown head. Retention starts our poor but the last half finger stuck around for quite a while. A short ring of lacing is left.

4.25 S: Really nice aroma on this. This definitely has a nice caramel and brown sugar component to it. I'm not really sure how much of this is due to the rapadou and how much if from the base beer, but I'm guessing quite a bit. Roasted barley, cocoa, and a slight molasses component.

4.5 T: Taste is just as good as the nose. Thick, creamy malty sweetness. Again layers of caramel. Brown sugar, roasted barley, chocolate, molasses. Desert beer sweetness without being at all cloying. Quite nice.

4.5 M: Heavy body. Creamy, velvety mouthfeel. Good moderate carbonation. Supremely smooth and not overly chewy.

4.5 D: Really tasty beer. Probably the best beer I've had from Alewerks.

Photo of BMMillsy
4.21/5  rDev +5.5%

Bottle as part of a fantasy baseball winnings. Thanks. Pours black with a one finger creamy khaki brown head. Very nice aroma of sweet chocolate and sugar, molasses, caramel, anise, some dark fruit. Flavor is sweet molasses, roast, some chocolate and toffee, brown sugar, lightly bitter roast bite to finish. Medium to thick bodied with medium high carbonation and a dry finish. Wow. This is a really good porter and I suspect it would work nicely with some barrels, too.

Photo of RaulMondesi
4.17/5  rDev +4.5%

Real nice. Lots of chocolate and coffee; and the coffee notes are real rich and almost dry - Raul feels like he is in the jungle picking the beans himself. This thang is roasty like you are on a camping trip trying to earn your Eagle badge. What's great is that it isn't thin and over-carbonated (I'm looking at you, Sump.)

Good beer.

Photo of obywan59
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Pitch black in color with only an extremely thin ring of ruby around the base of my glass. Tan 2 1/2 finger head that dissipates rather rapidly giving a very yeasty appearance as it goes, but leaving no lacing.

Coffee, molasses, dark chocolate, dark fruit, and brown sugar on the nose. A bit of dark yeasty bread as well.

Taste is even more fruity than the nose. Dark fruit and brown sugar again, with dark roast coffee to match. A bit tart, with a strong but not harsh bitter quality that carries through to the end.

Full in body with decent carbonation for the style. Syrupy and a bit drying. Spicy warming alcohol in the throat.

A superb offering from Williamsburg Alewerks. Probably the best beer of theirs I've yet sampled. Great aroma plus full flavor with plenty of warmth for this cool October evening or a midwinter's night for that matter.

Photo of cjgiant
3.79/5  rDev -5%

On tap:
This beer has a nice amount of sweetness to it, and the typical porter bitterness takes a back seat. I think this almost drinks like a stout more so than a porter (to split hairs in my own way, at least).

A (3.5): pours almost black, without much head, which is definitely gone quickly into the drink. Agitation reveals the beer isn't flat, but not much more

S (4.0): nothing special here, but expected roasted notes, chocolate, coffee, etc.

T (4.0): sweeter than I'd think from a porter (although it is a "sugar porter" given the description of the key ingredient). The opening has just a bit of weak coffee up front, but is brusquely swept aside by the raw sugar flavors that I would guess are from the "rapadou". A pitted-fruit-like tartness tried to come into play, but the sweetened coffee taste pushes it aside. For a second I get some date/fig, but maybe that's an anomaly.

M (3.75): I agree with something I saw in earlier review: oily. I thin the lack if carbonation makes it this way, and it's not too much of a detraction. The sugar makes it seem like a fuller beer than the mid-light rating I'll give it.

O (4.00): mentioned above, a decent beer if you know you're getting into a more dessert-ish beer (not Creme Brûlée dessert, but...)

Photo of hophugger
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%

Not being a huge Porter fan, I will have to say that this one is well done. The balance of caramel, malt and roasted sugar are great and has a touch of fruitiness. A touch too sweet but well balanced and a real kick in the ass at 9.00 abv. Another very nice beer by alewerks!!!

Photo of RacerX5k
4.64/5  rDev +16.3%

The base beer for my favorite Bourbon Barrel Porter. Had the pleasure of enjoying this on a gorgeous moonlit Eastern Shore evening where the stars were so bright. Caramel, toffee, brown sugar, molasses, dark northwest cherries, freshly picked blackberries, chocolate. Maybe the best aroma of any beer I've had. The aroma was so fruity out of the bottle, then the empty glass morphed into a tremendous caramel and molasses that smelled great until the next morning.

Photo of John_Beeryman
3.37/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a very dark, oily brown with a dark tan head that disappears soon.

S: Very alcohol forward, strong booze smell, winey and sweet.

T: Much like the smell: Sweet, winey, boozy, hints of raisins.

M: Thick and oily.

O: For all of this, not a bad beer, especially after that 8.5 kicks in.

Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.32/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a black color. The head is around a finger high, with a lighter tan shade. Slow to fade, it retains a creamy texture as it recedes. A tiny yet uniform ring of lacing is left on the glass.

S: The focus here is on notes of brown sugar and molasses, as expected. Hints of chocolate and caramel also come through. Some gentle, fruity booze notes almost make it resemble rum at times. Could use more roasted characteristics to help balance out the sweetness, but otherwise is a decent nose.

T: Follows the nose to a T. Ergo, the primary flavor is molasses. I'm also pulling up some chocolate, caramel, and brown sugar. It finishes with a bit of plummy fruit notes - again, there's a slight resemblance to rum. This is a fine example of a beer where its subtle booze notes help give it some nuance. Still, given its sweetness level, I wish it was a lot more complex. It's more or less a sipper, without many of the qualities that would make it a world-class sipper.

M: This beer is on the sweet side of things, but since it's light, it's not the cloying mess it could have been. On the other hand, it doesn't really fill rich or decadent. Just sweet. Carbonation is low, natch.

O: Credit is due, this shows off Haitian Rapadou extremely well. I just wish it also showed off some balancing roast, coffee, or dark chocolate, too. Still, a solid dessert porter.

3.3/5: Dessert beer slightly plagued by its simplicity

Photo of HattedClassic
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a bubbly brownish tan that dissipates very quickly. The beer itself is a dark brown that is opaque. The brown is a very chocolatey brown. The smell has very strong rapadou notes that both dominate and mix well with the other notes. The other notes consist of chocolate notes and sweet cocoa. The rapadou is an interesting smell. Basically, the rapadou resembles a much sugary milk chocolate smell. The taste are similar but the rapadou sugar is a little less strong and the cocoa and roasted malts come out more. The mouthfeel has biting carbonation and is heavy bodied. However, the beer feels pretty smooth and slick as it goes down and has a lingering sugary aftertaste that lasts for a while. Overall, this is a pretty unique and interesting porter that falls on the more chocolatey and sugary side than anything else I've had before.

Photo of kevanb
3.73/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

650ml bottle, no bottle date, poured into an AleWerks snifter.

The beer pours a nice deep black color, hues of cola brown when struck by the light with a small, tight khaki head that has low retention and leaves no lace behind. The aroma is of deep, bitter, bakers chocolate, lightly roasted coffee bean, strong molasses, brown sugar, a bit of coconut and some smokey dark grain. It's interesting, I'm not quite sure it's harmonious, but it's inviting. The flavors are nice, lots of molasses and chocolate, bitter and earthy, coffee bean is light, but present, meshes well with the bitterness, while some brown sugar and sweet grain pops out, lightly toasted without the smokiness found in the nose, although there is a bit of astringent alcohol at the finish that makes it a bit harsh, even as it warms. The mouthfeel is good, a little lighter than anticipated for a 9% porter, but the carbonation is smooth yet lively, coats the mouth very well and finishes nicely, albeit a bit dry.

Verdict: A solid porter from AleWerks that does a good job of highlighting the "rapadou" elements. The complexity is pretty nice, but the balance leaves a bit to be desired. Certainly a nice dark beer for fall and winter.

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
2.35/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

Appearance: Dark brown, relatively clear. Head is almost nonexistent but what cap does appear is a straight tan and creamy. Moderate carbonation.

Smell: Roasted cocoa and a ton of molasses. Chocolate malt and a solid hit of chcolate sweetness. Cherry and vague dark fruit. Sweet, raw sugar. Some leather and spent coffee grinds. Not a ton of depth.

Taste: Almost vegetal up front. Cocoa and worn leather with a bunch of sugar. Roasted malt, coffee, and sugar. Molasses and dark cherry. Raisins and some slight char on the back. A bit too sweet as it warms. Raw sugar and some grass. A touch of alcohol and so much raisin. Chocolate.

Mouthfeel: A touch creamy with a slightly below average carbonation. Medium body.

Overall: Rapadon't.

A bit too much fruit and sugar to really keep me interested.

Photo of angrybabboon
3.26/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Consumed 9/13/13

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this

Appearance: Pours a deep, dark brown - small, light tan head, fades to a few wisps of a cap - leaves some nice spots of lacing

Smell: Roasty, cooked malts and a ton of chocolate - unexpected complexity to the malts, with some roasty aromas, coffee, caramel, sugar, molasses, dark chocolate, milk chocolate - very sweet, with some sugar and a lot of dark fruit

Taste: Sugar, dark fruit, chocolate, and more sugar - loads of dark fruit, like figs - milk chocolate and dark chocolate - caramel, molasses, and brown sugar - roasty malts and coffee - toasty caramel malts - very sweet, which combines with the toast flavor, like... sugary toast

Mouthfeel: Medium body, very smooth, nicely carbonated, finishes sugary

Overall: "Rapadou," a leading cause of "The Beetus"

The sugary notes here are definitely interesting, but the brown sugar, caramel, and molassess notes are a bit much. This is good to split, but I think I would get tired of an entire bottle.

Photo of Chaney
4.21/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Tried this one last month and remember digging it. Didn't review it then, but here we are again.

Served in a teeny-tiny snifter glass.

A: Dark as night, but not quite snot-like. This one jiggled like the best of them. The head melted into nothing.

S: I got molasses, cocoa, and bacon. In that order. I also got some booze on the nose which was unusual but not entirely unwanted.

T: Drink this between entree and dessert. To say this is a dessert beer would cheapen it. Totally on the bright side of the dark beer spectrum, with with more than of bit of cocoa flair.

M: The chalky quality was pretty cool. Not thin in any way, but not a molasses bomb either.

O: I'm so glad they brought this beer back. I've read about it, heard about it on "Craft Beer Radio," and I'm glad I now know what Hatian Rapadou tastes like.

Photo of smakawhat
4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A simple pour brings a foamy and creamy light tan head, and even bubbles. Settles to a simple collar with no lacing on top of a black walnut body, opaque, with maybe just a faint hint of red.

Good simple toasty grains, with a nice mellow coffee like roast. Light. Almost a sweet sense of cream. No so much sugar, but a nice milky light sweetness. Pretty solid.

A nice super creamy mouthfeel, which is expansive and rich. Light hints of dark chocolate, coffee roasting warmth and soft creamy milk. Molasses bent on the finish with a chewy texture and flavor. Really nice texture, and a very down played controlled sweetness that I really enjoy (sugar bomb this is not).

Overall a fun tasty porter, kind of gets a bit large almost feeling Russian Imperial territory, but a worthy addition to Williamsberg's lineup.

Photo of teromous
3.48/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark brown completely opaque body with a creamy khaki head. Some very tiny meager spots of lacing.

S: It has a very subtle scent of coffee, but that's about it.

T: I taste light coffee with some dark chocolate flavor. There's a bit of roasted charcoal flavor, like the caramelized outside of cooked ribs. The beer would go very well with BBQ. There's a bit of walnut flavor in there as well. There is some residual sweetness.

M: The beer is very smooth and easy to drink, with a medium body and light roasted bitterness.

O: Once again, a beer is brewed with an ingredient that I don't notice. In this case it is "Hatian Rapadou" which must contribute some mystical flavor that I don't taste. In any event the beer is very tasty. This beer is a little more on the toasty side, and it has a bit more sticky sweetness than other porters (maybe the Hatian Rapadou?). For a 9.0% it hides the alcohol very well. I would recommend it for those who like smokey, roasted, and mild charcoal flavor to their beer. Personally I didn't think it was anything special, but for a stronger porter it was worth drinking.

Photo of ao125
4.75/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is a review for bottle 1256 of 2007 from Rick's Wine & Gourmet in Alexandria, VA.

Served @ 45 degrees F in a Troegs Mad Elf snifter glass.

This beer was incredible. Extremely intense unrefined sugar with hints of raisins. Very much a molasses note to this.

There was alcohol, but it wasn't boozy.

Color was deep and dark, with about two fingers of foam, which did not dissipate quickly.

I really wish this beer hadn't been limited to 2007 bottles, because I'd like another three.

I still have one though, that I'm sitting on.

Photo of ksurkin
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bomber #1229 from grape & gourmet. pours an oily thick, deep, dark brown with a thin, dark tan head and a great ring of lace. aroma is excellent with huge notes of brown sugar and toffee, dark fruit notes of fig and prune, and touches of chocolate and wood. flavor is great as well with big, dark roasted malts, sweet toffee, slightly sour dark fruit notes, bitter chocolate, and a touch of smoke and coffee on the finish. palate is full bodied and silky smooth with great carbonation and well integrated alcohol. overall, a damn nice imperial porter.

Photo of maximum12
3.94/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to ksurkin for shipping a bottle of this long-dead porter in a recent trade. Split with my wife & poured into our spankin' new Dogfish Head glasses, courtesy of Mr. & Mrs. Beerloco. Beer looks awesome! Bottle 284 of 2007.

Pours black, imperial stout black if I didn't know better. Smell is stunning. Deep, dark malts. Smooth roast. Chocolate, sweet night sugar. Yowza.

Rapadou Porter is another in a long line of beers that just can't quite live up to their borderline perfect smell. But it's good. Burnt brown sugar & scorched, roasted toffee up front, with a little chocolate, & an underlying echo of dark fruit. Very true to the nose, but all the tastes are quieter, less aggressive, perhaps not as well integrated. Maybe needs more time? Who knows. Still good.

Very good beer. Never had a porter this old, sorry, imperial porter, but interesting to see what one might develop into.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From BeerAdvocate Magazine Volume II, Issue V:

This limited edition Imperial Porter is brewed with an unrefined cane sugar from Haiti called rapadou. Bottle #929 of 2007.

Take care in decanting as the slurry on the bottom is loose and will fall into the glass, leave about an inch or more of the beer in the bottle and you'll be fine. Pitch black color, there is no light coming through at all. Tight tan lacing holds together quite well. A complex aroma of raw dark sugar is similar to the light molasses, anise or licorice root and brown bread. Lush creamy full body flows well with a smooth carbonation. Real wood charcoal, dark chocolate and even dark roasted coffee beans come to mind as the malt drops a roasted bomb on the palate. Molasses flavor settles in the middle with a faint earthy tone, then the fruitiness bursts with dried plum, burnt raisin and black currant. Alcohol is warming but a bit hidden for a 9 percent ABV beer. Mild hopping shows more bitterness than flavor and helps to balance the sweetness within. Bittersweet finish.

Big and bold but not so complex to make it unapproachable. Heavy-handed malt bomb with a roasted character that still comes off as being quite drinkable. Cheers to Williamsburg Aleworks for this beauty.

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.87/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber courtesy of bboyshatter, thanks a lot for this one! Numbered 982/2007. Pours a black color with no highlighting. Fluffy brown foam leaves a nice collar, not much lacing.

Nose is dark raisins, figs and various other dark fruits...very fruity aroma with a nutty, dark roast aspect. Alcohol is notable, but not fusel and is secondary to the fruit and toasted roastiness.

Taste is like the burnt sides of an over-baked chocolate cake with a couple hard-core roasted coffee beans thrown in. Smoke, cigar tobacco finishing flavor. Fruit is surprisingly absent on the flavor. Opens up nicely as it warms, smoked dark chocolate Milky Way candy bars come to mind. Body is nice and creamy and carbonation is never a hindrance. This was a very fun beer to try, thanks again Sean.

to view more.
Rapadou Porter from AleWerks Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 169 ratings.