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Puppy's Breath Porter - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Puppy's Breath PorterPuppy's Breath Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.

79 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 79
Hads: 547
Avg: 4.08
pDev: 23.53%
Wants: 94
Gots: 99 | FT: 9
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 02-04-2009

Dark in color with a ruby hue with forward notes of chocolate and caramel and light toffee notes in the aroma. Flavor has big notes of bittersweet chocolate with notes of caramel and toffee and moderate hop bitterness and more caramel and toffee and slight hints of char. A big take on a classic style.

40 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 79 | Hads: 547
Photo of kylehay2004
3.92/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: single finger head, dark,no light getting through. Amazing lace.

S: mild roast, touch of spice and smokey.

T: roasty, malt with a touch of coffee and chocolate notes.

M: drinkability is solid though the dry finish was a little too dry for me. flavor erupts and subsides quickly.

Overall: Solid all the way around. I got a lot of notes from this one.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

holy cow! this is 8% abv? i would have guessed it closer to 6, man does it hide itself well. what a rich and beautiful porter, maybe the best one i have had in 2015 so far. its dark dark brown in color, sporting a bright luster, and holding an inch of tan head on it, looks airy for the dark thick beer. the nose on it is dark chocolate and heavily roasted barley. i get the middle malt spectrum too, but thats more in the taste, with a sweetness like butterscotch, and more of a milk chocolate vibe. notes of coffee and molasses and even raisin are present mid palate, and the finish is decidedly roasty, hugely robust, and unique for that it has a slight coconut complexion, giving it a tropical flavor and lightness despite being so big and dark. its silky smooth, and it lingers on the tongue awhile after the swallow. you wouldnt think imperial porter in warm florida weather, but this one somehow fits in there really well. one of the best cigar city beers i have had, and with so little fanfare, i am surprised.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.42/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

huge thanks to a good friend who sent me up some extra special ccb offerings this week. i decided to crack this one open this afternoon as i needed to get a jump start on my day! served col and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 09/25/2010.

a rich dark pour produces a nice light tan head that quickly fades to a thin lacing around the sides and a few scarce bubbles. dark as night with an abyss looking color to it.

the aroma is huge, deep roasted malts, touches of chocolate an vanilla. lovely notes of dark fruits and a touch of vanilla and coffee. amazing and the perfect way to start my day. not as thick as i thought it would be, but i have to say it still works well. rich chocolate waves rush across the palate and are smushed aside by a deep resonant coffee note. this coffee only gets stronger as we let it come up to room temperature. really an amazing beer i have to admit. dark fruit notes and vanilla come through on the finish after the last of the coffee flushes from the mouth.

overall i was freakin impressed with this one. amazing depth and ungodly drinkability. i would have this all day.

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Photo of nickfl
3.97/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - small light brown head, settles quickly, leaves moderate lace.

S - intense aroma of brown caramel malts. Notes of spiced coffee, nutty caramel, and molasses.

T - dark caramel malt and molasses up front. Some dark cola notes and earthy hops in the middle. Finishes with more cola and toasted nuts as well as a strong spiced coffee note. Lingering burnt caramel and chicory.

M - med thick body, moderate carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - this is a very intense porter with a very strong molasses character. The malt is almost too strong with a flavor that isn't so much roast as it is very dark caramel. It leaves a lingering flavor that really reminds me of the taste of a cigar that has been smoked too long. Worth trying if you come across it,but not one of my favorite cigar city beers.

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Photo of oline73
4.41/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a growler into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours almost black with some red hints where the light hits the beer. There is a two finger, smooth off white head. This beer has good retention and really great lacing.

Smell: Lots of sweet and roasty malt right off the bat. Dark chocolate with some mild caramel. Nice and smooth.

Taste: Just as roasty as the smell. The roast from the malt is just little bit bitter. Some dark chocolate and sweetness. The finish is roasty and bitter.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the thick side with aggressively tingly carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: This is a really easy drinking porter. I couldn't taste the alcohol at all. Simple and extremely smooth. Really glad I got to try this one.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.53/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Cigar City, Tampa, FL

Dark brown-black pour, topped with a small tan head that receded to a wispy layer, and left a bit of lacing on the glass. Smell was that of a basic porter, roasty dark malts, light notes of coffee and unsweetened chocolate. Taste was about the same, dark malts, coffee, maybe just a touch of unsweetened chocolate, and some burnt caramel. Medium body and carbonation. An okay porter, nothing really memorable.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.91/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Frank (lurchingbeast) for sharing this one. Served in a Hill Farmstead glass.

A - Voluminous foam with great retention, eventually settling to a thick collar and wispy near-complete cap, leaving spotty lace behind. Very dark brown with some reddish glints at the edges.

S - Roasty, with light vanila and baker's chocolate, dark grains, and a touch of soapiness. Very dry, with low sweetness to it.

T - Taste is a touch sweeter, with some milk chocolate presence mingling with heavily roasted malts, cocoa powder, and hint of coffee. Finishes very dry and smokey. Thankfully the soap is gone.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, dry and toasty texture, and a hint of warming alcohol in the finish.

D - Solid, but not really my thing. Is this a true Baltic Porter made with lager yeast, or is it just a really attenuated American Porter? In any case, a bit too toasty and dry for my tastes, but no major flaws. I preferred Hot Blooded by a significant margin.

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Photo of chinchill
3.84/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap at The Brass Tap (Tampa).
Opaque and essentially black in the glass. Excellent, sticky lacing.
Flavor is about mid-way between Amer. Porter (with extra hops) and Baltic Porter. Black coffee in the finish and aftertaste, with a touch of smoke. Mildly bitter, increasing into the aftertaste.

O: a fine porter.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.23/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass. Bottled Nov 21st 2014.

Very good sized thick head creation, four fingers with control, bubbling and cascading wonderfully out of the bottle. Head settles to two fingers with a very light tan color and clumpy character. Body is classic dark walnut brown, very opaque and can't see through at all, with some nice ruby red hue tones to match.

Excellent classic porter aroma. Dry whispy grain and hints of milk chocolate. Mild senses of aroma and coffee but great malt sensing roast coming off this as well. Not amazing, but definitely better than average by far with a hint of vanilla and chewy carob nib like quality.

Palate comes off though just solid. Mid palate has a little bit more depth than average but stays away from sweetness or a watery texture. Mild sensing qualities of grapefruit on the finish, with lots of powdered cocoa notes in the mid palate. Finish of hinting fruit also brings out a nice coffee quality as well with some dry roasting grains to match, almost piping warm. Hints of cocoa are just all over this everywhere, mid palate full, with also a good airy aftertaste to match. Can't shake this fruit seems sensing grapefruit which is really just hinted at, barely distinct but really rounds out the flavors nicely and fully.

A real solid porter, with just a touch of excellence. Not quite into greatness but really darn good and pretty close to it.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.7/5  rDev -9.3%

On tap at the House of Brews. Served in a shaker pint.

Appearance - Big creamy head. Pillowy cream color. Excellent retention. Black body.

Smell - Roasty aroma. Some milk chocolate.

Taste - Roasty and a little sweet up front. Dark chocolate. Nutty malts in the back. Slightly bitter dark roasted malts.

Mouthfeel - Medium to medium light. Creamy. Mildly bitter.

Overall - Tasty. And a nice drinkable porter.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.77/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Another 12oz can extra received in a great trade with madnismo... Shared with the usual suspects... Thanks Nathan!

Pours a pretty standard black with hints of garnet escaping from the stem end of my glass... long lasting dark tan head with good sheets of lacing.

Nose is exactly what I expected... nearly perfect bigger porter... sweeter/nutty/bittersweet chocolate.

Flavor mirrors the nose with a drier (than the aroma) palate... still a nice bittersweet chocolate essence... fermented out caramel/toffee... a bit of darker malt with warmth.

Body does not make me think 8%.. surprisingly drinkable.

I really liked this one and normally don't appreciate standard porters.


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Photo of rudzud
4.14/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Received as an extra in a trade and poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a nice dark brown hue with a good half finger mocha head that fades to leave a light creamy halo and some gentle clouding.

S - Aromas of roast malts, chocolate, coffee grounds, light toffee, caramel. Dark, rich, roasty.

T - Taste is similar to the nose, big roasted malts, coffee, smooth caramel and toffee. The chocolate is much more pronounced and there is a nice smokey char before the hop bitterness on the finish. Tasty.

M - Mouthfeel is creamy, lightly carbonated. The alcohol is a bit noticeable.

O - Overall, this was a tasty porter, one I certainly would not pass up drinking again.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.8/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

32 oz growler split and poured into a Sierra Nevada tulip.

Last taste of the night, thanks Beerwolf77!

A - No carbonation at all, it pours without a touch of head. It was even sealed with that heat-shrink wrap. Missing about 8 oz from the growler. Wtf? Clear and dark brown with mahogany highlights.

S - Tons of rich roasted malts with a smooth nose and smooth coffee aroma! Hints of hops come through on the back end. Very nice Baltic porter aroma.

T - Strong bitter coffee overwhelms the roasted malts, nothing like the nose suggested the coffee to be. Good Baltic porter flavor through, it finishes with a balanced hop flavor.

M - Somewhat flat, it's not missing all carbonation, it's got a bit on the finish. Relatively bitter as it should be, but it's nicely balanced overall. A touch dry.

D - A little dry and bitter for my liking for drinkability, the problem is the shitty caps that Cigar City uses on the growlers. Even with that shrink wrap stuff it still comes out. Oh well, it's still a nice Baltic porter.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Can shared by Curran.

This one pours a dark brown, almost black, with a half inch head, and a bit of lacing.

Smells really nicely of chocolate and coffee, with some light smoke and a little bit of caramel.

This is very tasty, and surprising, because it was not on my radar at all. There's a really good amount of chocolate and coffee flavors, some milk chocolate and roasted coffee, with some caramel, and the slightest hint of smoke. All the flavors meld very nicely together.

This is medium bodied, not too thick or thin, with a fairly creamy mouthfeel, and a lower level of carbonation.

This was really tasty and really well crafted.

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Photo of Brenden
4.26/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

One of 6 samples at the tasting room 1/29/14

There's no question this is a nitro-tap: the dense brown cream that forms the head takes a full two minutes to develop before capping the dark brown beer beneath it. After it's fully formed and the beer falls slowly down the glass, it remains clinging to it as an almost unbroken sheet to the very bottom.
The main features of this porter are roast and dryness. There's a bit of woodiness and toffee/caramel sweetness to counter a dose of hops stronger than most porters receive but unobtrusive to its character overall. The gently bitter dryness serves to balance very nicely without interfering negatively.
The dry, medium-full body is very smooth. It's not as exceptionally smooth as some nitro beers (surprising, really, given the look), but it's got it.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.47/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Massive thanks goes out to my boy Jefe73 for sending me a growler of this for consumption on my birthday weekend! Served from growler into a Funky Buddha snifter (also compliments of Jeff in this package). Poured pitch black with a half finger light brown head that subsided to a minimal amount quickly. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, roasted malt, dark chocolate, vanilla, and dark fruit. The flavor was of sweet malt, roasted malt, dark chocolate, dark fruit, caramel, and a hint of smoke. It had a heavy feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this brew was nothing short of excellent. This style has really been growing on me lately as I have enjoyed quite a few offerings of this style. The flavor on this one is great and quite complex. While holding this complexity it is very smooth, making it QUITE easy to drink. The aroma was very nice and inviting and pretty much spot-on for what I enjoy about Baltic Porters. My only complaint... That this was only a 32 oz growler. I could have drank a 64 oz of this no problem, even at 8%. A definite must try for sure as this is a stellar brew.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a deep amber to black color with a light tan head. In the aroma, coffee and chocolate that is quite pronounced. In the taste, coffee, dry chocolate and a hit of hoppy bitterness. A small bite and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a dry roasty coffee in the aftertaste. A nice coffee and chocolate taste, nice hop presence, really freakin' good.

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Photo of AgentZero
3.86/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark brown color with a tan head that left some good stick behind. This is a pretty good looking beer.

S - It's not particularly sweet, and has some good roast. Smells

T - It's not particularly sweet, but with a touch of it. Has some good roast and a bit of a sticky taste on the end of it. There's a little bit of coffee and some smoke. I like this one.

M - Medium bodied, moderate carbonation, has a good dryness on the end.

O - Good beer, a little bit different. Wouldn't necessarily seek it out, but would drink it again if offered.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.29/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Dogfish Head pint glass. Bought from the Cigar City tasting room.

A- Pours a solid black color with a 1/2 inch tan head that soon slips down to an 1/8 inch thin head and has nice spackled lacing coating the entire circumference of the glass.

S- A fresh, clean malt nose that's quite sweet and has notes of chocolate.

T- Rich, roasty chocolate with a bit of caramel in the aftertaste. Alcohol is hidden beautifully as every sip is better than the last. A hint of glass but that's expected from such a malty brew.

M- Robust as CC's description promised. Not too heavy that it becomes a sipper though. Medium-high carbonation keeps things interesting all the way down.

O- Much better than the Jose Marti porter IMHO.

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Photo of maximum12
4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to fiver29 for this 22 oz. bottle: he is one of many people who know I’ll drink anything that comes out of CC’s tanks. Split with my wife.

The pour is black, fairly still. The nose is pedal to the metal chocolate, with that sweet, nutty undercurrent that you get in really good Belgian chocolate. Wow. Not I want to go back to Brussels.

Puppy’s Breath Porter is a lovely marriage of chocolate & beer: how could I not like this? Big mouthful of decadent chocolate up front, with the sweetness cut only marginally by CCs trademark roast in the middle. Back-of-mouth bitterness rounds it out, but really sticks in one’s craw (in a good way). Full, & my glass is halfway gone about three minutes after the first sip: either my glass is helping itself, or one of my kids is sneaking drinks. I can’t think of another reason it’s vanishing so fast.

This is a Greg Maddux fastball; nothing special to look at, not going to light up the radar gun, but just a pretty little work of art. Very good beer.

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Photo of dar482
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%

The beer comes in a black color.

The aroma hits of chocolate, roasted malt, and the familiar aroma of slightly robust porter.

The flavor hits of a medium to light porter. Light roasted malt, a hint of creaminess, mild chocolate. After 5 seconds on the palate, the beer finally explodes of huge chunky chocolate, brownie, a luscious sweetness, and then a coffee bitterness on the finish.

A perplexing beer that offers so little on the front, but a gorgeous finish that is deserving of an 8% porter.

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Photo of cbutova
3.97/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Sonny for sending this can my way.

A- 12oz can poured to a snifter with a black body and a light mocha head. Texture of the cap is creamy and foamy. Head retention is good as the foam falls to medium ring. Legs are plentiful as lacing forms in some sheets and spots.

S- Roast malts off the top with notes of cocoa, chocolate malts, caramel, toast and toffee. Hints of hops in the backdrop of the malts with dark fruits. Clean ale yeast.

T- As in the aroma, the roast malts are the main thing showing in this beer. Malts lend a portfolio of slightly burnt cracked grains, chocolate, coffee, caramel, toasted nuts and slight sweets. Hints of light fruits, raisin and some light hops that are of the earthy and citrus variety.

MF- Light-medium bodied with a creamy texture that brings a bit of chewiness. Carbonation at a moderate level and it seems to boost the roast flavors. Finishes with some roast and hop bitterness lingering on the taste buds.

Roast-forward Porter that delivers a nice mix of cocoa, coffee and caramel flavors. Good for those looking for a nice dose of those burnt dark grains.

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Photo of mynie
4.35/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

My midwest and New England experience has emibttered me, apparently, because I was shocked by the ubiquity of Cigar City around Tampa. Try finding Three Floyds at any random place in Chicago. Or Trillium outside of a handful of good beer bars. The best brewers are supposed to be super exclusive, right? Providing kegs only to hipster bars?

Not Cigar City. It's at hockey games and hotel bars. And Puppy's Breath was everywhere, right alongside Jai Alai.

Pours dark red with a medium head. Smells intense, much bigger than I was expecting from a widely available flagship. The aroma is that of a standard porter--rough, bittersweet barley and dry hops--only amplified.

Tastes as it smells. Bitter and sweet malt dominates throughout, balanced at the end by hops and char and punctuated throughout by little bursts of chocolate and fruit. Wonderfully large and variegated, yet smooth throughout.

The availability is awesome and the fact that they would choose an 8% ABV porter as one of their flagships is equally awesome.

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Photo of TX-Badger
4.49/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on nitro at the brewery. Pours a dark, dark brown with creamy ivory head. Chocolate, caramel, and a hint of toffee on the nose, just a little sweetness; follows onto the palate. Finishes with notes of roasted malt. Very nice.

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Photo of BMMillsy
4.36/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

On tap at House of Beer in Gainesville. Pours dark opaque brown with minimal head. Smell of huge coffee here with significant chocolate, earthy and sweet all in one. Heavy coffee flavor with chocolate finish, the flavor is incredible bordering on semisweet chocolate syrup, with the coffee more subdued than the palate . Medium heavy mouthfeel. Exceptionally creamy. Yum.

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Puppy's Breath Porter from Cigar City Brewing
90 out of 100 based on 79 ratings.