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Atwater Shaman's Porter - Atwater Brewery

Not Rated.
Atwater Shaman's PorterAtwater Shaman's Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
77
okay

40 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 40
Reviews: 24
rAvg: 3.27
pDev: 25.08%
Wants: 1
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Atwater Brewery visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: jasonpeckins32 on 01-26-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 40 | Reviews: 24 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by proc:
Photo of proc
3.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours out to a dark, dark brown in the glass with a decent-sized head. The aroma is predominantly roasted malt, with bread dough thrown in on the edge. The taste is good, but a bit thin. The roasted malt gives this beer an edginess that lets up at the end, finishing with a light swallow. A good porter to introduce a macro drinking friend into the world of craft beer.

proc, Sep 27, 2006
More User Reviews:
Photo of WuAnquo1
3.5/5  rDev +7%

WuAnquo1, Jan 11, 2012
Photo of BeerIsland
3.63/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Stumbled onto a variety case at Exton Beverage. I visited the brewpub back in the '90s and was interested to see them selling beers in PA. I can't say how long the case was there, some of the characteristics noted below could be due to age.

The Shaman's looks fine in the glass; very dark brown with a generous amber head. Head gave way to a nice lacing in a bit. The aroma is a little winy but with plenty of malt notes. The flavor is decently balanced with a bitter chocolate aspect that is OK. After the head dissipates, the mouthfeel is a little thin and there is a touch of extra carbonation.

All in all, an interesting alternative to the eastern PA Porters.

BeerIsland, Jul 22, 2006
Photo of pwoods
1.98/5  rDev -39.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz. brown bottle, purchased at Party Source, poured into an imperial pint.

A: Pours nearly pitch black with just a touch of ruby on the very edges. Short head forms dark khaki and dies quickly. Not much lace at all.

S: Good roasty characater but there's a healthy dose of diacytel. There's also a bit of barely, but very distracting, rubbing alcohol in the back. Maybe even a touch of lactose.

T/M: Roasty character is much less than in the nose and doesn't give the small benefit but trying to hide the bigger diacytel flavor. More of the alcohol and lactose mix. Added with a less than stellar body and fizzy, over carbonated feel... not impressed at all.

D: Average abv but a bad feel and tons of off flavors. I make a better porter than this.

pwoods, Jul 20, 2009
Photo of Jredner
2.48/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

The aroma is lightly sour and lactic with overripe fruit and warm garbage aromas. Not a good sign. It pours dark brown and settles dark brown to black with a diminishing tan head that is just shy of a thumb’s thickness.

Chocolate and dark fruit fore. Slightly tart in an off way with hints of stale coffee, light smoke and mild roast malts. This is almost good, but it has some flaws and what is done right is not very intense or varied. Pretty foregettable.

Jredner, Jan 24, 2007
Photo of jmunsters
2.73/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into a snifter

A: Medium pour produced a billowing thick head that dissipated slowly leaving little lacing. Poured a deep dark brown. Looks like fresh motor oil.

S: A bit of sweet malts up front with a very faint hint of vanilla and tanins. Not really a whole lot here.

T: A nice light sweet, and mildly rich maltiness. I don't get any hints of a barrel aging here. A bit of odd woodiness comes through though.

M: Thin, mild carbonation, easily drinkable. Not typical of what I would have expected from a bourbon barrel aged ported.

O: It's drinkable and entirely average. It's relatively inexpensive for barrel aged beer, but it's the quality is totally indicitive of its price. I'd drink it again, but won't buy it again.

jmunsters, Oct 14, 2011
Photo of tommy5
3.75/5  rDev +14.7%

tommy5, Dec 08, 2013
Photo of buschbeer
3.5/5  rDev +7%

buschbeer, Dec 30, 2012
Photo of Baron
4.53/5  rDev +38.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On draft @ The Asgard, Cambridge, MA for Craft Beer week in Boston. quite nice.

A - Deep black with hints of purple shining through around the edges. Perfectly white yet thin head.

S - Incredibly complex, some fruit (raspberry), dark, roasted malts followed by hints of spice and finally a full burbon sweetness in the finished.

T - Follows the aroma well, giving a very unique flavor from the burbon barrel aging thats present but not too sweet. Finishes with oak and toasty spice.

M - Medium to medium light bodied rather uncharacteristic for a porter, yet fits the profile of the beer well as a thick syrup might overdo it with the sweet flavors

D - very drinkable beer, but due to its unique flavors any more than 1or 2 a the most can be consumed in one night. an adventurous move on their part. Props to Mike from Atwater that night for presenting his brew like a true gentleman.

Baron, Apr 29, 2009
Photo of StoutHunter
1.83/5  rDev -44%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I picked up a bottle of Atwater's Shaman's Porter a couple days ago for $2.49 at The Lager Mill. I haven't seen this beer from Atwater before so I figured I would give it a try and see if they could do this style justice, I also got this because it said it was aged in bourbon barrels, it sounds like a good combo so lets see how it is. It had a brewed on date of September 2011. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a snifter.

A- The label has the stamp that all Atwater's special releases have with the addition of a black and white drawing of a Greek god with a dog by his side, the picture is cool looking. It poured a simple dark black color with a fingers worth of tan head.

S- The aroma is pretty lackluster and is basically just a bunch of sweet roasted dark malts that have a slight coffee and chocolate aroma. Not much going on in the aroma and no bourbon whatsoever.

T- The taste is pretty much an exact mirror of the aroma, and that's for sure not a good thing. The taste is a pretty sweet and watery mixture of dark roasted malts that are pretty bland and overly sweet. The biggest mystery about the flavor is where the bourbon went, there is not a single thing about this beer that would make me believe this was actually aged in bourbon barrels, none of the flavors that come with aging a beer in bourbon barrels is present, that sucks.

M- Slightly cloying, on the light sided of full bodied, and it had a low amount of carbonation.

Overall I thought this was a pretty bad beer that came nowhere close to living up to it's name. I came into this beer expecting a nice barrel aged porter but instead I got a poorly made porter that tastes like it never spent a minute in any type of barrel, this is pretty much false advertising. What I liked most about this beer was the mouthfeel, that was the only thing about this beer that was halfway descent. What I liked least about this beer was the flavor and aroma, they both were a big let down with no hint of bourbon whatsoever. I will never buy this beer again, it isn't what the label says it is and for $2.49 a bottle it was overpriced. If you see this beer on the shelf do yourself a flavor and look the other way, you'll just end up being disappointed. This has been the worst beer I have had from Atwater, it was just way to far off from what it should be and if you claim that your beer is aged in bourbon barrels you should have some bourbon barrel flavors to back that up, stick with making the Vanilla Java Porter and rip this recipe to pieces, I see that this beer hasn't been reviewed since 2009, now I know why.

StoutHunter, Sep 28, 2011
Photo of weeare138
3.98/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at the brewpub on 11/15/05...
Appears a black with a small tan head and lacing typical of a nitro pour.
Smell is of chocolate, black patent, and creamy sweetness.
Taste is of the same aromas that I would expect from a decent American porter.
Mouthfeel is smooth, sweet, rich, and full bodied.
Drinkability is nice.

weeare138, Feb 14, 2006
Photo of rsitarski
3/5  rDev -8.3%

rsitarski, Nov 17, 2011
Photo of granger10
4.38/5  rDev +33.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer comes off the top with a darker black color and a smallish but compact and creamy tan head. Weak lacing. Aromas of chocolate and cream and cookie dough. Flavors are strong on coffee and cream. Very mocha like. Some semisweet chocolate character develops. Very smooth as well. A slight earthy flavor underneath along with a bit of spice to dry this beer out in the finish. Not too sweet not bitter, very balanced in the mouth. A very inviting creamy end is left. Easy drinking and quite flavorful, I could drink quite a few of these. A nice Baltic interpretation.

granger10, Feb 09, 2006
Photo of BrewtalHonesty
2/5  rDev -38.8%

BrewtalHonesty, Mar 21, 2014
Photo of jdhilt
2.78/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a two finger light tan head that fades to a thin layer leaving a little lace. Black color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Roasted coffee nose. Starts as roasted coffee but quickly becomes dry and medicinal which lingers. $1.69 for a 12oz bottle from John's Grocery Iowa City, IA.

jdhilt, Jan 23, 2007
Photo of SupaCelt
3.98/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Intensely brown in colour, the shaman revealed itself outside of the bottle with a decent but short lived foamy cocoa toned cap. The amount of carbonation present is hard to gauge simply because of the nebulous darkness of the body. No lace followed in the wake of the head.

Smell: This brew contains the house scents of ginger or vague cinnamon that the other offerings from this brewery have also displayed. It works quite synergistically with the rest of the porter characteristics here. The black patent malt aspects are pleasant in their roast like appeal. Coffee bean aromas, the ginger or cinnamon spiciness, and a hint of dark chocolate and creaminess comprise the nose in a nut shell. A bit of nuttiness is also present for that matter.

Taste: The taste is quite mild and easy going as expected, with pleasant roasted flavours and some muted coffee or espresso bean like qualities mixed with the mystery ginger like impressions. The bitterness is fairly low. The flavour is most notably hop influenced in that it develops a drying shift in the finish. The roasted character imparts a slight bitterness of its own, and perhaps some dryness as well, coupled with a dark chocolate type sweetness which seems to be the most pronounced aspect. Well put together in terms of flavour.

Mouthfeel: Appropriate. A slight medium would be my estimation. It is more than fat enough to carry the load.

Drinkability: Good. This is an easy drinking porter. Quite a pleasure to drink down and ponder.

SupaCelt, Feb 04, 2006
Photo of Derek
3.6/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From their website:
"Atwater's newest Lager! A porter traditionally brewed in the Baltic region. We use the finest ingredients include Munich, Chocolate and Black Malt's along with German hops to create the smoothest Porter you've ever tasted. Shaman's Porter will thrwart and tricksters or evil spirits!"

I haven't had many Baltic porters, so I searched this out at the Michigan Brewers Guild Winter Beer Festival.

A: Very dark black, with only a touch of tan head.

S: Roasted malt.

T: Quite malty (chocolate, nut, coffee/mocha, caramel). There's doesn't seem to be enough alcohol here... though perhaps it's just well hidden. There's some residual sweetness, but it's more acidic and dry than I had anticipated.

M: Moderate body that's highly carbonated (too carbonated).

D: Alright.

I think this one has potential... and maybe wasn't served under optimal conditions.

Derek, Feb 27, 2006
Photo of Frozensoul327
3.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

An odd-ball porter. Pours out to a dark coffee mocha color with a frothy head of brown foam. Lots of lace, and a medium low level of carbonation. Aromas of chocolate and molasses are noted, with hints of roasted malts and wood. Taste was off... sweet and sour flavors of dark plumbs and grapes, with hints of sweet herbs and sugar cane. Not for me. Mouthfeel was like lightly carbonated vinegar; bites slightly, but still very thin and rather light. Average drinkability. Reminds me alot of Kuhnhenn's Penetration Porter.

Frozensoul327, Mar 16, 2006
Photo of Stinkypuss
3.58/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. Served on tap into a chalice. Ruddy brownish amber with a small head that diminishes quickly.

S. Lightly toasted malt and not a strong scent at that.

T. A subtle maltiness and earthy hop with a dominant oak flavor. Hints of acrid smoke and just a bit of nuttiness.

M. Medium to full bodied, semi dry finish.

D. Kind of filling, kind of strong, but a good session porter here. If the price were right a case of these could be a welcome addition to my collection.

Stinkypuss, Jan 21, 2009
Photo of BEERchitect
3.6/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A decent Porter. I has all of the standard flavor and aromatic profiles that all of the other decent Porters have: chocolate, coffee, malt,... Nothing flashy or outstanding, but has little flaws. Simple and standard -- would be greatly improved with a body and creaminess that stood above ordinary, but otherwise a nice Porter, just like the rest of them.

The use of Lager yeast and / or process leads to the lack of esters. On the bright side, it is cleanly flavored. On the bad, it lacks character. Too similar to a Dunkel or Schwarzbier.

BEERchitect, Mar 17, 2007
Photo of mvanaskie13
3.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a sam adams custom glass: color is near black, no real brown edges, head is tan and dense with finer bubbles and presents about 1/2 inch thick, then creates some lacing and lingers well.

Smell is slightly acidic, but its overtaken by the malty flavors and light earthy hops; some biscuit, toast and chocolate are prominent.

Taste is lightly thick, not quite cloying, sweetness is definitely present, possibly some lactose backing this up? malt flavors are chocolate, biscuit, toast. There is a mild bourbon/oak note, its subtle but present.

Mouthfeel is a bit heavy on the tongue, not cloying but thick like a milkshake, i'm still thinking lactose; its carbonation is stinging and slightly drying.

Overall, an okay beer - it seems to miss the mark of a bourbon porter as it does not seem to meet porter qualities (maybe a sweet stout, except for the chocolate) and its bourbon/oak qualities are muddled.

mvanaskie13, Jan 22, 2014
Photo of WesWes
2.98/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

The beer pours a dark brown color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a sweet, malty scent that boasts of crystal and chocolate malts along with an earthy breadlike aroma. The taste is average. THis has a very sour flavor to it. It's almost undrinkable. The crystal and chocolate malts are present, but there appears to be some contamination here. The mouthfeel is average. It is a full bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a terrible porter. It has a wonderful aroma, but the taste is really sour.

WesWes, Apr 21, 2006
Photo of ejimhof
4/5  rDev +22.3%

ejimhof, Sep 03, 2014
Photo of RyanCFriedrich
3.25/5  rDev -0.6%

RyanCFriedrich, Feb 10, 2014
Photo of Rons35
3/5  rDev -8.3%

Rons35, Feb 25, 2013
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Atwater Shaman's Porter from Atwater Brewery
77 out of 100 based on 40 ratings.