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Baltic Porter - Uncommon Brewers

Baltic PorterBaltic Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

148 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 148
Reviews: 85
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 13.53%

Brewed by:
Uncommon Brewers visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  7.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: illidurit on 01-31-2009)
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Ratings: 148 | Reviews: 85 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of warnerry


4.2/5  rDev +11.4%
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.

Serving type: can

01-09-2012 01:27:12 | More by warnerry
Photo of smcolw


3.85/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Good beige head that leaves some streaky ring lace. Very dark brown where no light shines through. The head settles to a thin layer of

Near coffee notes, meaning that the coffee is mild contributing to a more mocha aroma because of the cocoa. Light hop nose, this is almost all coffee.

The flavor is a full semi-sweet chocolate flavor. The aftertaste is chewy from the thick body and lots of cocoa. Predictable flavoring of cocoa and mild alcohol. The body is neutral with an average carbonation.

Serving type: can

01-03-2012 00:26:42 | More by smcolw
Photo of akorsak


4.22/5  rDev +11.9%
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.

Serving type: can

12-24-2011 01:44:30 | More by akorsak
Photo of VelvetExtract


3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A- Pours nearly black. Barely any light enters. Tan smooth head than is small and looks like a milkshake in terms of consistency. Light lacing. Good look.

S-Chocolate, mostly dark chocolate. Nice coffee roast too. A bit of anise. Very light hop aroma as well. Has a sort of chalky element to it.

T-Anise and the chocolate come through and shine. Coffee sets in after. A bit burnt. The flavor is quite like the nose. Very solid. A bit smoky too. A tiny twitch of hop in the finish.

M-Creamy and smooth. Medium to full bodied.Carbonation complements the feel. Very respectable feel. Creaminess is nice.

O/D-Overall, I was not impressed with the first beer I tried with this brewery. This one is much better. The feel stands out the most to me personally. Drinkability is pretty high. I got a single can of this for about $3.25 which is pricey. Definitely worth a try. This may make me try another beer from this brewery.

Serving type: can

12-14-2011 05:07:09 | More by VelvetExtract
Photo of tempest


3.35/5  rDev -11.1%
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.

Serving type: can

12-12-2011 02:39:22 | More by tempest
Photo of jlindros


4.22/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tall boy cans, hell yeah!

Pours a nice creamy darker 1+ finger head that fades semi slowly with nice lacing, over pretty much pitch black beer.

Nose of loaded with choc and roast, some toasted malts not crazy chartered, with light coffee. Most of all the chocolate, bakers, dark, cocoai powder, and bit of choc milk. Light earthy hop brings light bitter aroma. Then some caramel, light vanilla, and a nutty nutmeg like aroma round it off. As it warms a hint of licorice.

Taste starts with more dark malts, luscious creamy malts, light roast again without the bitter char and light coffee. then more chocolate although less than the nose, bakers and powdered cocoa mostly. A light burnt like black patent malt flavor is there too. Creamy milky chocolate leaks its way in with a light bitterness and light earthy hops. A light warming booze also sneaks in, with the late caramel, vanilla, and again light nutty malt. Finish is still creamy but not quite as dry as I expected but still drier, more chocolate and light roast, light booze, caramel and vanilla all linger.

Mouth is med to heavier bodied, creamy and luscious, lighter but decent carb, done warming booze.

Overall very impressed actually, wasn't expecting much from a brewery I have barely heard of and from a can, but they did the malts very well without the burnt roasted flavor. Nice chocolate, black patent, light coffee vanilla and caramel, and light nutty, light hops, creamy smooth and drinkable with a light booze kick. Very nice.

Serving type: can

12-03-2011 03:28:15 | More by jlindros
Photo of cbutova


3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Some new cans in MA instantly attract my money, let's see how "uncommon" this really is.

A- Pitch black out of the can and into a Hill Farmstead tall tulip. One finger dark mocha head forms with a silky texture and decent retention. Eventually just a small ring without much lace.

S- Aroma hits the nose with a good amount of roast malts and licorice notes.

T- The first sip interests me. The beverage is still cold but it brings a good amount of licorice, dark cocoa roast malts and some vanilla like sugary hints. The licorice and anise get intense with time but not harsh.

MF- Creamy but lighter body than I would expect in a big porter. Silky and smooth with some roast bitterness.

Not usually a big fan of anise and licorice forward beers but this one drinks fairly smoothly and I like it.

Serving type: can

11-19-2011 02:42:07 | More by cbutova
Photo of indiapaleale


4.5/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pour – very, very dark. This is pitch in color pretty much with only a thin coffee-colored head. This is pretty much impossible to see through and looks rich and flavorful.

Aroma – molasses, licorice, Tootsie-Rolls, cocoa powder, milk chocolate, Play-Doh and some earthy notes. Quite a lot going on in the nose with this beer.

Taste – one sip and you know this is something unique. Lots of dark roasted malt flavor combines with the licorice and molasses notes and there is an effervescence on the tongue that is hard to describe. A bit of a sweet, dry finish almost like eating dried fruits. There is also just the faintest hints of citrus hop flavor and some bitterness biting in the end.

Overall - very good. You've got to know a little bit about this particular style of beer to full appreciate it. Uncommon Brewers does this one well, perhaps well enough to be the best of their canned offerings so far. Well done.

Serving type: can

11-08-2011 03:34:24 | More by indiapaleale
Photo of Daniellobo

District of Columbia

3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A nice take on a Baltic Porter with added anise and licorice.

Presentation: 16 oz can. Silver background with a simple illustration of the plants added, general branding and highlights of organic quality. Back offers notes with serving suggestions, history of the style and intent of the brew. Notes canning date 06-01-2011 and 7.8% Alc. by Vol. Served in a tulip glass.

A - Black pour with dark brown edges, initial creamy tall head with poor retention, no surface memory or lacing to speak of but the thinnest of rings.

S - Nice roasted nose, soft coffee, hint of chocolate, licorice, and fruit.

T - Palate completes the nose with dexterity, nice roasted profile, good notes of charred coffee, that hint of chocolate with the licorice woven to a range of dark fruits, with a hint of anise.

M - Medium body with medium to low carbonation, feels a tad thin for a moment but the lingering bitterness picks up the finish.

O - Pretty nice flow, nothing memory shattering but pleasing.

Notes: Nice canned offering, first try from Uncommon Brewers and while maybe not the Porter I would that eagerly pick up again I´d sure be glad some of the rest of their brews.

Serving type: can

10-24-2011 00:48:07 | More by Daniellobo
Photo of emerge077


3.93/5  rDev +4.2%
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.

Serving type: can

10-08-2011 04:30:07 | More by emerge077
Photo of Reidrover


4.03/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 oz can from "Lifesource" Salem. $2.95 Again ,as with the Siamese Twin, the pour is horrendous..a gentle pour ensures a glass 90% foam. Is there some sort of trouble with transportation or at canning..oh well heres another 10 minute wait to taste the stuff. OK after a long thirsty wait here goes. Typical baltic porter body..almost black yet with mahogany aspects on the edge. Actually a nice ,tight,creamy tan head..when its under control. Aroma is pleasing.. fresh ground coffee bean,cocoa nibs,,touch of aniseed, a faint aroma of medicinal liquorice. Very nice. Taste is the same as the aroma basically..with a little alcoholic warming and some blackcurrant. The mouthfeel is slightly over carbonated for style but OK and finally get some strong liquorice goodness. Over all a nice beer..but i dont know if i want to buy anything else from this brewer to drink with friends..as waiting for the froth monster to shrink isnt really my thing.

Serving type: can

10-01-2011 19:27:39 | More by Reidrover
Photo of zaphodchak


3.93/5  rDev +4.2%
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.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2011 01:42:11 | More by zaphodchak
Photo of VaTechHopHead

3.55/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Black with hints of ruby red around the edges of the glass. Not so great head retention on this one but good lacing. Seems to be unfiltered (as suggested by the can).

S - Rich roasted malts is the primary aroma but the licorice is right there as well. A little vanilla in there also. Don't get much star anise in the aroma.

T - A little thin but the black licorice is well represented; paired with the roasted malts it blends to make a nice vanilla flavor as well. The star anise is hard to pick out with the addition of liquorice as they are very similar in flavor. A little espresso, a little cream, and a some char as well. Finishes with just a hint of booze.

M - Nice body and solid carbonation for the style. Leaves the palate refreshed and doesn't dry it out very much at all. Has a little bit of a chewy character from the dark malts.

O - Not pasteurizing this brew makes it very nice and drinkable and adds a certain level of raw freshness that helps the ingredients come through. Above average for the style and nice flavor additions.

Serving type: can

08-23-2011 03:24:24 | More by VaTechHopHead
Photo of MetalHopHead6


3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Uncommon Brewers Baltic Porter is bubbly, super-sweet, and tasty.

It poured black with cascading bubbles and a miniscule tan head. Not much stuck to the glass. There was very little aroma, with only the slightest hint of coffee and metal, like an empty old-time tin coffee can. The flavor was great, if a bit too sweet, with hints of dark chocolate and sweetened coffee, leaving a sugary aftertaste. The feel was dominated up-front by the carbonation which quickly gave way to slippery stickiness with only a hint of bitterness. There was no mistaking the high alcohol content, which perfectly complimented the flavor and feel helping to make it a great experience.

I first had Uncommon Brewers Baltic Porter out of the can while poolside on a very hot sunny day and it was terrific. Later, I had one poured into a glass for the purposes of this review, and it wasn't quite as good. Context means so much; this is a great experience out of the can, when aroma and appearance don't matter so much, and a pretty good Baltic Porter from a glass.

Serving type: can

08-15-2011 00:48:36 | More by MetalHopHead6
Photo of goldbot

District of Columbia

3.88/5  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.

Serving type: can

08-12-2011 23:50:55 | More by goldbot
Photo of jmdrpi


3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

16 oz can, with 3/14/11 stamped on it. assuming bottled date?

jet black. big foamy khaki colored head, that fades to a thin covering. very strong aroma, on the bitter side. licorice, a little smoke.

dry roasted flavors in the taste, lingering anise aftertaste. medium body, fairly smooth, lower carbonation.

funny, still getting used to pouring black beer out of a can. a pretty good beer.

Serving type: can

07-30-2011 04:32:59 | More by jmdrpi
Photo of BeerAdvocate


4/5  rDev +6.1%
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!

Serving type: can

07-28-2011 14:36:12 | More by BeerAdvocate
Photo of Kegatron


3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
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.

Serving type: can

07-25-2011 16:57:50 | More by Kegatron
Photo of ne0m00re


3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
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.

Serving type: can

07-22-2011 23:13:59 | More by ne0m00re
Photo of woodychandler


4.68/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

More CANned beer from a once-obscure brewery in north-central Cali! I love being the founder of The CANQuest (TM) because it has left me attuned to (seemingly) any brewery that is putting their beers into a CAN. I had some of their Siamese Twin Ale a couple of years ago and was mighty impressed. Let's hope the trend CANtinues.

From the CAN: "Late in the 18th century Britain's great brewing families were working hard to break into new markets. For the Baltic Sea ports they created an eport version of the traditional British Porter. Styled like an IPA to preserve them for the voyage, those profound Baltic Porters served to ward off the chill winds of that northern sea. That said, we weren't satisfied with the Baltic Porter's traditionally subtle hint of black licorice. This ale features a blend of whole licorice root and star anise to create an uncommon addition to that traditional export Porter's hearty character."; "Ale brewed with Licorice and Star Anise"; " Our beers are unfiltered, unpasteurized and undoubtedly uncommon. They're designed to grow over time as they age. Store in a cool place and witness the change."; "Uncommon Brewers - In 2002 we set out to discover the forgotten potential of an ancient beverage all too often taken for granted. Uncommon Brewers was born out of that exploration. Our products are sourced whenever possible from local farms and growers. Some are even harvested by hand from the hills of Northern California."

The Crack & Glug produced one of the most intimidating beer that I have ever had come out of a CAN! It was dense and black with a finger of defiantly thick deep-brown head that seemed impervious to humidity or anything. It had the best staying power of any head I CAN remember. Color was a deep, dark brown/black with only cola highlights at the edges. Nose smelled like licorice, simply put. I was reminded of my mother's love of Twizzlers Nibs when I was a kid, but I had to be desperate to want to eat them as black licorice was not my bag as a kid. Nor is it today, but in terms of innovation, I have to give the brewers major props! Damn, this beer really made my taste buds sit up and take notice. I really could not get much more than the anise flavor from this beer, but that, coupled with its thick mouthfeel, was enough. The finish was like I had just chewed up a bag of black licorice. Phew! One was puh-lehn-tee, but what a one. No way is this going into any cooler but the one for Hula in the Coola Day (01 Feb, annually), when it will help to break the winter doldrums. Kudos for taking such a chance!

Serving type: can

06-15-2011 23:00:34 | More by woodychandler
Photo of tone77


3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
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.

Serving type: can

06-13-2011 17:11:52 | More by tone77
Photo of DoubleJ


3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Avenue Bar & Cigars for $3 a pint, on to the beer:

Obsidian in color with a large head created on the pour, though retention and lacing are merely adequate. In the aroma, a little fudge and some licorice greet the nose.

The tastes of licorice, unsweetened chocolate, and pinches of leafy hop and brushes of alcohol put this beer on the 3.75 mark, but the pleasant aftertaste of fudge are enough to warrant rounding up. Body is leaning towards heavy, fairly smooth. A pint is plenty, or at least in the short time span I had to drink this.

A return to Santa Cruz and its Uncommon Brewers has come in reward with this Baltic Porter. Glad my spontaneous instinct got me into that bar in the first place.

Serving type: on-tap

06-12-2011 06:21:36 | More by DoubleJ
Photo of engagechad


4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased as a single from Wine and Beer Westpark in Glen Allen, VA - poured into Imp pint glass

Pours VERY dark with tan leather head, soapy bubbles. Easily agitated back to full 1/2 inch head. half a point ded for the lack of lacing. Smells complex and interesting.. Lots of licorice (obviously as it states on the can that it is brewed with licorice root and star anise) and some other chocolate artifacts. Taste follows but also adds a very uncommon (ha..) aftertaste that I have never encountered.. The aftertaste is of belgian waffles with syrup. It was so odd that I kept cleansing with water and then approaching the brew fresh to see if that is what I thought I was tasting and it was. Mouthfeel is chewy and right on.

Overall this was a surprise beer, just something I decided to grab because I haven't had many in this style and wanted to try more.

If you see it, get it. it's an adventure!

Serving type: can

06-10-2011 12:30:41 | More by engagechad
Photo of alexhahn82


3.33/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A -- Dark black with a hint of burgundy, 1.5 finger head that quickly dissipates without any lacing. *I did not get a "satisfying crack" when opening the beer, almost like opening a can of tomato juice.

S. More of a tone of Annis than licorice, and it does have a great smell of chocolatey roasted barley.

T/M -- Light cream feel at first with a nice bite similar to baker's chocolate, not a hoppy bitter bite, more of the baker's chocolate.

Overall. Decent baltic porter, Though I was not a fan of the bittering on the end. Overall an average style beer, unsure on price point as it was a gift.

Serving type: can

06-01-2011 02:12:33 | More by alexhahn82
Photo of Urbancaver


3.7/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to forgetfu for this one.

Pours dark brown with a nice maroon touch. No real haead. a bit flat but looks pretty. Smells great. Lots of dark fruits. Tastes sweet and full bodied. The malts are very complex. Overall super thick and rich for a blatic porter. Because of that I'm disappointed in it. More of a sweet/milk stout. But, very tasty!

Serving type: growler

05-04-2011 16:42:19 | More by Urbancaver
Baltic Porter from Uncommon Brewers
85 out of 100 based on 148 ratings.