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Baltic Porter - Uncommon Brewers

Not Rated.
Baltic PorterBaltic Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

172 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 172
Reviews: 88
rAvg: 3.78
pDev: 12.7%
Wants: 12
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Uncommon Brewers visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  7.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: illidurit on 01-31-2009

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (11) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 172 | Reviews: 88
Reviews by travMI13:
More User Reviews:
Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #52 (May 2011):

Darkness fills the glass, lacing drapes the top. Smells of spice, licorice and anise with suggestions of vanilla and white peppercorn, plus a bonus of melon fruitiness. Creamy, smooth medium body. Roasty char goes right to a licorice root and anise that build and then stick to the palate. Dry charred graininess. Treacle or molasses sweetness in the middle. Fruitiness is vague, but rises up a bit with the mild heat from the alcohol. Burnt finish is semidry. A good twist on a traditional style; spice additions are at a perfect level to compliment rather than take over. Tallboy cans FTW!

Photo of warnerry
4.17/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Canned 5/26/2011

A - Pours deep brown, with a bit of red visible when held to the light. One finger of tan head dissipates pretty quickly, leaving only scant lacing.

S - Big aromas of chocolate and licorice/anise. Chocolate has both bittersweet and milk chocolate aromas.

T - While chocolate was more prominent than anise in the aroma, the anise takes center stage in the taste, at least initially. Midway through, chocolate takes over, though there is another flush on anise on the finish. The licorice flavors don't always work in beers, but it is really a highlight here. A bit of citrus hops near the finish as well. Very nice.

M - Medium mouthfeel with a nice creaminess and just a touch of alcohol burn.

O - My first from Uncommon, definitely makes me want to try another.

Photo of wattoclone
3.83/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As stated on the label this beer is very unfiltered and unpasteurized. It is so active one of the cans in my 4-pack exploded in the back of my Prius on a hot day, sounded like a gun went off. I pulled off the road into a parking lot and guzzled down the remaining warm beer which was excellent even hot. The remaining three cans were bloated on the top from internal pressure.

Later, after cooling down to "cellar temperature" as instructed on the can I opened an intact can. A huge persistent tan head that persisted for over 15 minutes. Extremely dark, appears opaque and unfiltered as stated on the can. Aroma is complex sweet chocolate and vanilla with earthiness, licorice and anise notes. A lingering persistent chocolate-coffee, herbal finish. Bordering on cloyingly sweet but enjoyable nevertheless.

Update on 8-15-2013: Suffering from a sore throat and tonsillitis I decided to try a can of the Baltic Porter instead of licorice root tea. Not only did I feel better, but the next day my throat infection and pain was much better. Now I plan to keep a few cans of this around for medicinal purposes.

Photo of biboergosum
3.97/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz can. A purportedly traditional Baltic Porter, but with amped-up anise and licorice root additions. Sounds like a lark to me.

This beer pours a clear (I guess) very dark brown colour, with slight reddish cola highlights, and two fingers of puffy, foamy tan head, which leaves just a low berm of lace around the glass as it quickly sinks away.

It smells of sharply roasted caramel malt, earthy, kind of vegetal black licorice root, a whiff of BBQ smoke, and an underlying sweet alcohol twinge. The taste is nicely toasted caramel malt, some more lingering meaty smokiness, semi-sweet exotic star anise, on an even keel with more mundane earthy black licorice, hints of savoury spice, a wavering underlying meek sourness, and understated, but eagerly supportive leafy, earthy hops.

The carbonation is sturdy, but at the same tame forgiving, the body a decently innocuous medium weight, and a tad creamy in its only rarely punctured smoothness. It finishes on the sweet side, that aspect of the licorice/anise really holding sway, with the malt and undervalued hops quietly going about their business.

An agreeable old-world porter, jazzed up with the proclaimed, and indeed actual (yay, truth in advertising!) licorice boost, which plays out in an even-handed manner, so much so that I don't even really notice it after a while, which is another feather in this offering's collective cap. Worthy of a try, if not more.

Photo of Sammy
3.8/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A serviceable Baltic Porter, picked up fresh recent trip to PA. Pours a bit thick with a bittersweet chocolate scent. Above average mouthfeel. Very drinkable, a little bitter it could use more, a nice roasting. Nice drinkability, 473 ml can provides a good amount to be be shared by two.

Photo of zaphodchak
3.92/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Opaque blackish body, thin offwhite head.

Liquorice nose (more anise), pretty mellow.

Ton of anise. So much. Quite sharp and fresh. More anise than liquorice here.

Mouthfeel is a bit foamy when aerated but I doubt the flavor is suffering.

Of the Uncommons I've tried, this is less interesting, but on the whole, it certainly has its merit.

Photo of tempest
3.4/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Split a 16oz can with a friend. It poured dark brown with a light tan head. I liked the mix of roasted, cocoa barley and mild esters in the aroma. The flavor, however, gets a bit thin for the style and the fruit falls out with just the roast left. Something's off, maybe a little too much alcohol taste, or maybe it hasn't aged well. It's close to being a good beer, but isn't quite there.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.96/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours one finger of tan head on a black body.
The aroma is a big roasted malt with some burnt wood in the background. Excellent.
The taste is roasted malt and dark, mildly bitter, chocolate.
The texture is smooth with low carbonation.
Very enjoyable.

Photo of Kegatron
3.82/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16 oz can into a tulip glass.

Pours black in the glass, topped with several thick fingers of light mocha head. This retains with a rich and frothy ½ finger, which leaves back soapy lace down the sides of the glass. The aroma is fairly forward up front with chocolate and caramel flavors, which in turn give away to notes of dark pithy smelling fruit and ripe green citrus, before finally trailing away into a smoky roasted tanginess in the back of the nostrils. This has some depth to it.

The taste is similar, with notes of dark fruit, acrid roasted character, and a green citric bitterness that is balanced by a hefty dose of sticky chocolate sweetness. A LOT of smokiness from the malts starts to emerge as this warms, lingering in the finish with some meaty character and an earthy feeling bitterness that sticks to the tongue. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied and while initially sharp on the tongue, this does smooth out a great deal on the edges of the feel. Maybe a bit too much, as this is ultimately coming off as a touch too light, to the point that it unfortunately does start to distract away from the flavors a bit. Alcohol is well hid for close to an 8.0% ABV, so fortunately not is all lost with the body.

I mostly liked this, with the fruit, roast, hops, and sweetness, all coming together to give this a relatively full flavored ripe and bitter feeling tanginess. The lightness of the body does hurt this a bit but the alcohol is well hid, which helps out in the long run. It’s not the best example of the style but it’s worth checking out if you run by a can.

Photo of tone77
3.68/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The legend woodychandler hooked me up with yet another canned beer. Poured from a 16 oz. can. Has a pitch black color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, some licorice. Taste is of roasted malts, some anise and licorice coming through. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall is a good quality brew.

Photo of akorsak
4.2/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 16 oz can from Anderson's in Toledo. Dug out from the back of the fridge.

A: The porter is deliciously dark, deep brown-black no matter how you look at it. The first pour generated a thick, cascading head, deep tan and very attractive.

S: Stark but sweet, the baltic porter brings deep roasted malts that have a decided legumey-chocolatey edge to them. The sweeter milk chocolate aromas are the stand out.

T: The sweet milk chocolate and cocoa continue in the first sips. That sweetness pairs nicely with the underlying darkness, roasted as it is. The starchiness is also evident, running throughout the porter. Despite the significant head, carbonation seems to have been tamped down. And, oh yeah, a boozy heat runs right through the middle of the ale, a peppery blast. The spiciness, bold and chocolatey is very nice. An excellent Baltic porter.

M: Good until the heat wave arrived. After that, I was sold by the peppery heat. Uncommon indeed, I wish that I had a few more cans lying around.

Photo of emerge077
3.92/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Can from Maiden Publick House, dated 06/01/2011.

Poured into a stemless wine glass. Black with chestnut edges. Loose and fizzy tan foam, dissipates fast. Soda carbonation around the edges, loose ring that clings to the sides. Loses steam a bit too fast, glassy surface with clusters of soda bubbles.

Smells like a baltic porter, straight up. Cocoa, coffee, licorice, hits all the signature notes.

Roasty malts, chicory, ashy, bakers chocolate. Lingering bitterness from the roasted malts, lending an impression of mild coffee and dark chocolate. This was surprisingly good, medium bodied and easily drinkable.

Photo of Rutager
3.92/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance. Pours dark brown with a thin tan head that doesn't last long.

Smell. Sweet molasses, some dark chocolate with a little bit of ripe fruit, licorice, and booze.

Taste. Sweet molasses again, some good roasty malts and that dark fruitiness I was smelling. Just a little anise.

Mouthfeel. Medium-full body, lower carbonation. Kinda warm.

Overall. I enjoyed the taste of Megadestroyer's big anise last night, but the smaller Uncommon anise is very enjoyable as well. I'm probably a bit biased with both of these though, I've always been an anise man.

Photo of goldbot
3.89/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Can into pint glass, dated 6/1/2011.

Pours deep, deep brown, basically black. Thinnish, tan, fizzy head that dissipates fairly quickly. Bounding with coffee and dark chocolate aromas, very roasty and malty. Smooth, dark chocolate flavor with good complexity. Earthy, roasty and malty. Fruity and quite sweet, almost cloying on the back end. The mouthfeel is rather watery.

Photo of nataku00
4.35/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Bay Area Craft Beer Festival. Poured a dark brown into my tasting glass with maybe half a finger of head that quickly dissipated. Little to no lacing when I tried to agitate the glass to promote more head, indicating a fairly viscous and possibly syrupy beer. I couldn't see any carbonation through the dark beer.

Nose was dark fruits (plums and raisins primarily) and anise licorice flavors. Some breadiness as well, but it did not smell overly sweet, which I was worried about when I saw how syrupy it looked.

Taste follows the nose, with the licorice being at just the right level, balanced by a little sweetness from the malt, and some fruitiness. I'm not normally a fan of licorice, but this had a really pleasant flavor. Little to no aftertaste left on the tongue, with a nice smooth and almost creamy mouthfeel from the medium to full body.

Very easy to drink, and I had around three samples at the beer fest before they ran out of it.

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

Poured into an Elysian snifter. Pours a very dark ruddy brown amber with a nice finger of light brown head with great retention and lacing. Aroma of chocolate, toasted mallt and a hint of cherry and anise. Flavor of light fruit esters, toasted malt, licorice and hint of chocolate and cherry. Finishes with an interesting wave of toasted malt and more fruit, leaving a long, pleasant and spicey aftertaste. Medium bodied with light creaminess. Not quite a traditional Baltic porter, but I found the uncharacteristically estery fruit component was very nicely balanced with the malt and spices. Pleasant and well done.

Photo of jeffjeff1
3.7/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I picked this up a while ago in Carmel.

Appearance- black color, thin head that dissipates quickly

Smell- strong smell of roasted malt and coffee

Taste- roasted malt, coffee, chocolate

Mouthfeel- medium to full bodied

Drinkability- I thought it was pretty good. I would definitely drink it again.

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

single from WF Fairfax

a: tall boy can into a wide belgian snifter, the beer is a deep brown in color - essentially black in low light, a nice layer of head falling back quickly to a thin ring

s: semisweet chocolate chips hit the forward end, the licorice and anise aren't as obvious as anticipated, which is probably a good thing - as is they add a nice depth with a gentle root beer-like aroma, smooth barley roasts, some toffee sweetness, touches of alcohol

m: carbonation just under moderate, body light-medium

t: a nudge of slight sweetness tempers dry roasted barley flavors that run from start to finish, not much licorice/anise flavor - I suppose it's melded into the roasty structure, later on I do pick up what may be the anise in the form of a root beer flavor as found on the nose, hop flavors not particularly distinct, contributing a mild-moderate bitterness to the dry finish

o: not a huge or terribly complex baltic, but nicely structured and well-designed, the additives give the aroma a little push but aren't noticeably integral to the success of this one

Photo of Amalak
3.85/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A. It has a massive bubbly, brown head that leaves a good deal of lacing. It's black with a hint of light coming through at the bottom.

S. Smooth nut scent to it.

T. It has a very alcohol bite to it. A bit over the top. It's malty. Hints of chocolate. A nuttyness to it.

M. Very carbonated and leaves a tingle on the tongue.

O. The alcohol I feel overtakes any of the complexity. It a bit to port wine-ish as a porter beer. It's not bad, but it lacks a certain something.

Photo of metter98
3.8/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is very dark red (close to near black) in color. It poured with a two and a half finger high tan head that has good retention properties and consistently left a half finger high head covering the surface.
S: There are moderate to strong aromas of anise and licorice in the nose; these intensify as the beer warms up.
T: The taste is similar to the smell but also has some notes of roasted malts and hints of chocolate. No bitterness is detectable.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a high amount of carbonation. The beer seems a little thin for the style.
O: This beer tastes like a hybrid between a classic English porter (given its lighter body and lack of bitterness) and a Russian Imperial Stout (with the flavors of licorice and roasted malts). Any traces of alcohol are well hidden from the taste. You really need to let his beer warm up in order to enjoy its aromas and flavors.

Photo of MRsojourner
4.06/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

16oz tall boy can poured into a nice High and Mighty mug. the pour looked so thick like an imperial stout nice and silky and black as night
The aroma had a bit of anise and some fumes of hot alcohol.
The taste was of a mild coffee and a musty chocolate combo followed by just a hint of earthy hops to balance it out. it is very clean and somewhat refreshing. medium mouthfeel with a head that sticks around for a while. enjoyable for sure. ill set a couple of these down for a year and see what happens.

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

Poured from a 16oz can into a brandy snifter.

A: Midnight black with some hints of red. Tan head recedes to a ring around the glass. Some lacing.

S: Roasty chocolate, milky sugar, sweet anise. No licorice to be found.

T: Big quaff of roasted malts, bitter chocolate, lactose. Nice balance of roastiness and lactic, chocolatey sweetness. Licorice and anise are slightly discernible. Vanilla throughout. Huge pleasing charred taste in the finish, with more chocolate, lactose, and anise lingering. Alcohol is well-hidden, but contributes nicely to the sweetness.

M: Nice. Creamy and somewhat thick.

O: Not exactly the licorice bomb the can says it is, but tasty nonetheless.

Photo of Murchmac
3.53/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Licorice, anis, licorice anis.

This beer pours dark with some brown highlights.

Smells like licorice

taste like licorice.

Its a pretty good beer. Did I mention it was pretty licorice tasting. Still enjoyable, not bad as an extra just to give it a try.

This brewery always turns out interesting beers. Flavorful, to say the least, whether or not its to your liking is another matter.

Photo of ne0m00re
3.46/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Live review of a pint can dated 05/26/11.
A: Murky dark brown, it poured with a decent evanescent tan head that died almost immediately to... nothing.
S: Nice roast in the smell, sweeter espresso like raw sugar cane and molasses mixed in. Sweet raisins add a vinous wine quality to it. Not bad.
T: Good chewy sweet espresso, molasses, nice brandy oxidation. Decent.
M: Thicker, ends with a thinner, cleansing linger.
O: Pretty good. I'm not sure if I'd get it again, but it was worth the four-pack.

Photo of DrDemento456
3.73/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got 3 of there beers on discount. Seems their beers are really carbonated and they said "open it over a sink" chilling the beer and doing so the can didn't explode everywhere.

A - Pours a very dark black, no light escaping with a half inch of head that sticks around to make a mocha colored lace ring. Don't be fooled it's still very carbonated so don't shake the can!

S - I get mostly chocolate malt in this one with roast coming at me as well. Smells sweet.

T - Wow that's carbonated. Felt like I was swallowing foam. Taste is pretty light for 7.8% with balanced light chocolate flavors and coffee. Not bad.

M - Way too bubbly really the whole time I wanted to be careful swallowing since it foams up rather easy. Medium bodied but light bubbly body.

Overall I would love to have this again but they really got to cut the carbonation down a bit! Good beer overall and am happy to have the other two offerings.

Canned on 5/14/2011 and still this carbonated GAWDamn!

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Baltic Porter from Uncommon Brewers
85 out of 100 based on 172 ratings.