Imperial Milk Porter - Stranahan Whiskey Barrel Aged - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Imperial Milk Porter - Stranahan Whiskey Barrel AgedImperial Milk Porter - Stranahan Whiskey Barrel Aged

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

158 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 158
Reviews: 74
rAvg: 4.2
pDev: 11.19%
Wants: 102
Gots: 47 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  ABV ?

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ajcobb24 on 07-24-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 158 | Reviews: 74
Reviews by 7ways:
Photo of 7ways
3.85/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-mazing lace on this beer, it's coating the damn rim. Austere dark brown with a minimal head.

Chocolate, nuts, and caramel on the nose at first, with just a hint of what is to come. Time and temperature reveal a more sinister bitch.

Holy whiskey dick batman, the spirit is strong in this one! Well integrated, and only distracting in the sense that it makes you pay close attention. It is like a small boilermaker using Left Hand Milk Stout, although lactose is definitely not the first thing that comes to mind. Not a bad thing, really. Finishes both dry and sweet.

Almost has the classic CCB mouthfeel (Rotund, slick, and satisfying) but not quite as full as Zhukov's or Hunahpu's.

Other than the fact that it is fairly one dimensional for a -bal aged dark specialty, I quite enjoyed this. Especially after choking down most of a HotD Matt.

Sidenote: Maybe they have their reasons and the devil is in the details, but porter? Slightly thinner stout =/= porter.

More User Reviews:
Photo of ehammond1
3.84/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle (2011)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, sendsilk!

Very dark brown, nearly black, with a very thin brown head that eventually leaves small spots of lacing down the glass.

Wonderful aroma consisting of bourbon, vanilla, wood, sweet and dark chocolate, and a bit of roast and char character. Full, complete--really quite nice.

Somewhat disappointing flavor after an incredible aroma, though this is still nice. The char and smoke flavors are a bit more dominant than I would have expected and preferred, but the bourbon, chocolate, and vanilla flavors are here in enough quantity to balance things out.

Medium mouthfeel with moderate carbonation.

A very nice imperial milk porter, though the aroma is better than the flavor.

Photo of mondegreen
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml into a CCB Snifter.

Pours black with faint brown edges. A moderately fizzy head fades, leaving only a slight ring and nice lacing.

Nose is sweet and boozy. There is no question that this brew sat in a whiskey barrel. Slight notes of dark fruits, roasted flavors, and a kiss of licorice.

Taste is dominated by boozy whiskey. It teeters on the edge of being "too much," but the other intricacies of the brew pull it back from the ledge. A wonderful sipper that begs to be explored.

The mouth comes off as a tad thin, but I think that's just the barrel talking. It takes a pretty substantial beer to stand up to these massive whiskey flavors.

Overall, this is a good barrel aged porter. It isn't the best of the CCB lineup, as the myriad of Marshal Z treatments are the crown jewel (including Hunaphu's). However, this one is worthy of tracking down if you like beers with giant barrel characteristics.

Photo of MrKennedy
4.09/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle thanks to nicks6217 and mulder1010! Shared with mulder1010 and spicelab and poured into a Bruery tulip style glass.

Pours a deep brown colour with a reddish tinge around the edges. Nice tan head of foam on top that reduces down pretty quickly but makes a comeback with agitation. Nice legs on the glass.

Smell is rich. Plenty of oak and vanilla, a little bit of bourbon, along with dark toasted malt, caramel and chocolate. Gave a nice sign of what was to come.

Taste was very much a nice interaction between chocolate, oak, vanilla and caramel. Some of the lactose flavour came in towards the back of it.

Feel is smooth, not too thick, well balanced and quite drinkable.

Overall, this really works well with the barrel ageing adding another dimension to an already interesting and complex beer. Yet to be disappointed by Cigar City and this gave me no reason to start now.

Photo of Mavajo
4.07/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pitch black body with a creamy light-brown head. Aroma is a nice blend of caramel, vanilla and whiskey. Taste is very nice -- caramel, vanilla, malt, chocolate, whiskey and a kiss of roast. I think the caramel and whiskey are the main players here. There's actually quite a significant aftertaste here. It started off as a mild roastiness, but then began to snowball into this heavy lactic and roast aftertaste that just lingered and lingered. Not a fan of that.

The barrel aging is well done here. It's not overly dominant, but provides a nice backbone to the profile that causes everything to meld together nicely. Creamy (the whole "Milk" part of the name, I suppose), with just the right touch of carbonation.

Really a well done beer, except for the distracting aftertaste. It's called a porter, but I don't know how you'd possibly distinguish this from an imperial stout. Definitely worth trying.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.94/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a tumbler. Bottled 7/3/2011. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Black, duh. Off-white head. No real head retention, but the single layer of foam lasts forever.

Smell - Whiskey. Really nice whiskey aroma, actually. Oaky with milk chocolate behind it.

Taste - Whiskey and chocolate roasted malts. Oaky as the chocolate fades. Lactose is hidden by the barrel, which I appreciate, but it's still there. Finishes with the slighest tang.

Mouthfeel - Dry and oaky in the finish. Sweet from the lactose, but not overpowering.

Overall - I wish it didn't have lactose, but oh well. It is what it is. Maybe a little one-dimensional in the malt profile, but what it has is good.

Photo of thagr81us
4.27/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle split among beeruser, funkydelic, and dbhall. Served from bottle into a Mikkeller flute. Poured a massively dark brown (basically black) with a minimal light tan head. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, roasted malt, dark chocolate, wood, and sweet alcohol. The flavor was of sweet malt, roasted malt, dark chocolate, wood, sweet alcohol, and subtle cream. It had a heavy feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a great brew. This one really surprised me if I am completely honest. The base beer on this one must be quite excellent if I am honest as the whiskey barrels really took this one to a new level. The barrels let you know their presence right out of the gate when you went in for the aroma. They carried that through into the flavor as well. Wouldn't have guessed Milk Porter, but Porter for sure. Really worth trying if I am honest.

Photo of buffs9
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Opened this in hopes that it would give my Broncos some luck v. the Pats tonight. A Florida beer that's aged in CO whiskey barrels and has a blue and orange label. How could I go wrong?

A: Dark brown with a nice 2 finger head in my Duvel tulip.

S: Really digging the smell on this one, picking up chocolate, whiskey, brown sugar and a little tang.

T: chocolate and molasses,, roasted malt and some smooth whiskey going on here.

M: Full body, thick and a bit oily, which I dig

Overall: Enjoyed this one a lot. Curious what it's like fresh as the lactose had a bit of an aftertaste I didn't love.

Photo of Bung
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml. Pretty close to black, thin layer of tan head.

Aroma, Malty caramel, vanilla, whisky oak, some chocolate. Pretty balanced, doesn't knock you on your butt with booze.

Taste, more caramel and vanilla. There is definetely some lactose sugar presence. The barrel is very well integrated with this one. Oak whisky accents. Not a lot of chocolate roast in this one. Cocoa and vanilla finish. Still a very pleasant pallet with this one, opens up nice as it warms especially the chocolates.

It's just a tad thinner and a tad higher on carbonation than some, preventing it from being that creamy mouthfeel. Still coats well and drinks very easily. Not sure what the abv is, but is pretty well hidden.

First Cigar City offering, no complaints for sure.

Photo of badboyrsl84
4.12/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark like coke with a fizzy mocha head.

Smell - beautiful amounts of bourbon hit the nose instantly. Vanilla, oak and ample amounts of milk chocolate.

Taste - very smooth when it hits the tongue. Bourbon up front, vanilla and oak. It finishes with milk chocolate and some fig taste. A hint of heat in the throat.

Overall- it was worth the trade and very much enjoyable.

Photo of jmarsh123
4.43/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown almost opaque black with a vigirous 2-3 finger mocha head that faded fairly quickly leaving lacing.

Smells of whiskey, cocoa, vanilla and brown sugar with a hint of smoke.

Taste has similar components, but in different quantities. The whiskey is a tad subdued compared to the nose, which is nice. Cocoa, cream and vanilla are heavy players as it finishes with just a touch of smoke and spice on the back end of the palate.

Very smooth creamy and oily, just how I like my darker beers.

I'm hit or miss on most things from CCB, but this one was definitely a winner. Perfectly balanced with good thick mouthfeel. I enjoy whiskey and smoke in subtle quantities and can't stand when they are overpowering. This definitely fits the former category.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.45/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

split with Alex and my father in law on friday night into three tasters

dark brown in color with no light cracking through this one at all. A smallish head, maybe a half an inch in height coming up over the top, never really did fade away as it kept that nice layer there throughout the session. Rich side glass lacing left a wonderful chocolate tan color that draped the sides of the glass completely.

The aroma was just rife with whiskey. Huge notes of it just all over the place here with a ton of roasted malts and chocolate like notes hiding right under its surface. Letting it warm really let the oak and vanilla start to become dominant, and a hint of alcohol started to present itself in the back end. This was insanely good smelling for a whiskey barrel beer. The flavor was more of the same, rich, full bodied, I would have sore this was a stout in a blind tasting, but no, this indeed was apparently a robust porter. Luscious, velvet like feel in the carbonation never gave way. The flavor started with that warm influx of vanilla and whiskey, lots of caramelized malts and a light roasted or smoky note to it. This then rolled over with nice touches of chocolate rippling throughout. This was amazingly complex. Huge notes of whisky just oozing through the flavor, coating the tongue with a viciousness that was never-ending

Photo of spicelab
3.97/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reiterating the Thanks to nicks6217 and rounding out the review trio.

Dark brown when held against the light. Listless tan head abates fairly quickly, reforming momentarily on swirling.

Lots of sweet milk chocolate, oak and vanilla. Definitely get the signature pungency that struck me in Marshall Zhukov and Huhnapu. Could be the yeast strain, the lactose tanginess or a combination of both.

Very similar flavours. The seductive vanilla and oak Stranahan character dominates but doesn't eclipse the base beer. The lactose character becomes quite pronounced by the end.

Pretty smooth and um, milky. Carbonation flies under the radar. Hint of booze heat.

Another solidly crafted offering from Cigar City which extracts full value from the Stranahan ageing. Very enjoyable, if hard not to make unfair comparisons with the heady heights reached by their finer offerings.

Photo of Gfunk720
3.92/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, out of my Long Trail Brewmasters glass.

A- Pitch black, very stout like. A very aggressive khaki colored head forms, with light lacing.

S- A sweet blend of whiskey, oak, and malt. Hints of chocolate and coffee as well. This is probably the best part about this beer, just smells amazing.

T- The initial flavor is very creamy, but a bit off putting. Notes of whiskey, oak, and caramel sweep through my mouth. More hints of chocolate, coffee, and dark malt. The flavor is a bit off, could be the lactose.

M- The beer has a great body, and is very complex. I do feel that it is a bit overly carbed, as evident by the head and biting fizz mid-sip.

O- I was very exited to try this, and was pleased with the result. It was a tasty beer, but not a whole lot of porter notes. This is more of a light stout aged in whiskey barels, but something is just slightly off.

-GFunk

Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.42/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml poured into mini snifter. Dated 7/3/11. Malty sweet and whisky boozyness. Roasted character in aroma but the bourbon really does dominate. Taste is a bit hot, mild sweetness, roasted malts and vanilla like bourbony goodness. The lactose adds complexity. Great beer, especially if you dont want subtlety in your bourbon flavors from a barrel.

Photo of oline73
3.87/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

We opened this up during the tasting this weekend. Poured into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown color, this one doesn't seem to be very thick. There is a finger and a half of tan head that fades to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Slightly sweet with some dark fruit. Seems to be a bit ashy. The bourbon smell is warm and sweet.

Taste: Sweet malt with some mild roast. I'm not picking up much lactose. Lots of hot bourbon with some oak in the finish. The oak and bourbon seems to be a bit peppery.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with smooth carbonation and a slick finish.

Overall: I would have liked this to have a body that is a bit thicker. Some more age might have smoothed it out, but it is still very good.

Photo of DarthKostrizer
4.12/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: Dark brown in color and a 1/4 inch tan head and good retention that leaves behind a bit of lacing

Smell: Lots of oak and vanilla on the nose.

Taste: The beer has great notes of chocolate vanilla and a bit of oak but to be honest I am not sure the barrel again really did much for the beer I did not get any whisky notes at all.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body and low carbonation

Overall: I really liked this beer quite a bit but I wish it had more barrel characters to it

Photo of KevSal
4.22/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this guy is awesome, had to review it.

thank you Jeff for hooking me up yet again with amazing brews. I had good gourd last night and was blown away really wish I reviewed it but don't want to do it by memory.

not gonna let this one slide tho

750 poured into 2 cigar city tulips

a- looks good.pours a light brown but absolutely dark in the glass. off white half inch head that leave some lacing.

s-this is where this one really shines. it's really th perfect mix of whiskey with the base imperial porter.lots of chocolate, vanilla, nice dose of whiskey sweetness.lactose in base beer comes through nicely.

t- yum, this one follows the nose with some real good intercession of the whiskey in the beer. lots of milk chocolate. I'm lovin this. reminds me of a good thinner imperial stout. great chocolate milk hints.

m- it's a nice medium thick body on the tongue. a bit thicker than our normal imp porter but thinner than a double stout(
( and much thinner than it's stout counter part by ccb, these guys make the thickest stouts around) nice change. heat is nonexistent! gf had sevrel more pours than usual.

o- very good beer. best BA porter iv had to date.BA imperial milk porter name sums it up perfectly. if you love Milk chocolate and whiskey this one is a must.

edit: drink it somewhat chilled as the lactose gets pretty strong as it warms

Photo of spinrsx
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml Bottle - thanks to cfrancis for sharing

Appearance - Dark brown colour with an average size frothy beige head. I can't make out the amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for 4 or 5 minutes.

Smell - Malts, chocolate, a touch of coffee

Taste & Mouth - There is a below average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, coffee, chocolate, and some faint dark fruits. There is also some vanilla and a bit of a burnt wood flavour. It ends with a chocolatey sweet aftertaste with some light bitterness.

Overall - I've yet to have anything less than spectacular from Cigar City. This one is another winner that has an amazing mouth feel and lots of high quality chocolate taste.

Photo of Rhettroactive
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From 750mL bottle to snifter on 11/29/11
*From notes

-- We consumed this after Bligh's Barleywine, as they both spent some time in Stranahan's Whiskey barrels. --

A: A pretty damn dark American Porter. It looks more like a stout. A good pour yields a one finger head that sticks around for a short while, and leaves a decent collar.

S: I get a bit more bacon fat then whiskey. Granted the bottle is a bit cold. Letting this open it up for a few does the job, and allows whipping cream, cocoa and toasted vanilla to enter and explore the nostrils.

T: A hefty dose of whiskey up front. There's also a good bit of char on the fore to mid. The back is decidedly lactic, with the acid creeping up and slowly overwhelming the palate as coconut water and vanilla cream soda finish this one out.

M: CCB knows mouthfeel, and this is no exception. Wonderfully thick and viscous.

O: Another barrel aged winner from CCB. I'd have liked this a bit better without the lactic acid, but it does add a complexity to the beer, and for that I understand. I do recommend that those in possession of this drink it soon, as I could easily determine that holding it would only do this tasty brew nothing but harm.

*Thanks to UMCaner74 for treking down to Cigar City on his day off and hooking me up with this bottle. Dave, you're easily one of the most epic trading partners in the history of BA.

Photo of aasher
4.3/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This bottle was acquired in a trade with preismj awhile back. Thanks Matt!

This beer pours a medium bodied Milk chocolate brown in color that pools to be more of a dark, dark brown on the verge of black. It has a creamy and soapy beige head that turns into a sticky lacing. The nose features plenty of vanilla bean, creamed coffee, milk chocolate with just a touch of whiskey. The nose is soft and just really well integrated. It's silky smooth. The flavors feature smooth milk chocolates, cola, vanilla bean, light coffee roast, a touch of bitterness and a mellow whiskey finish. The flavors too are really nice and smooth. They do finish somewhat quickly in the after taste. It drinks medium in body and doesn't show the abv at all. This is a really nice beer. I'm glad I could try it. I have loved everything that Cigar City has barrel aged, this included.

Photo of sendsilk
4.5/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

**Top quote to remember from the review: 'This is almost like a Whoppers malted milk balls milkshake with vanilla and caramel added, that I could imaging buying at an alcohol dispensing Dairy Queen.'

This beer poured into my snifter from a 750 ML purchased at the brewery $20.

Dark Brown to a dark blood red color that is barely opaque when held up to the light. Decent head that disperses farily quickly.

S - I smell caramel, vanilla and bourbon. Also malts are definitely detectable. It's extremely sweet smelling, I hope it's balanced out in there....

T - Wow, wonderful caramel, vanilla, malts char and boooze . Usually not a huge fan of tasting the whiskey, but this is a nice exception. This is almost like a Whoppers malted milk balls milkshake, with vanilla and caramel added, that you I could imaging buying at an alcohol dispensing Dairy Queen. Really delicious!!

M -Like most of the Cigar City stouts and porters, they achieve an excessively viscous brew, much to my chagrin! excellent!!

O - This is a perfectly balanced malty, bourbon/whiskey milk stout/porter that I would drink again and again except for the hefty price tag. I did not know what to expect from the lactose being added but it gives it a creaminess and balanced that I have not found in another milk stout. Although i like Moloko, it's not usually my favorite style, this one is an exception for me. I live close to the brewery so you may consider me a CC homer...I have had MOST of the CC beers and if I don't like something from CC, I just won't review it, and this was not the case with this one.

Photo of Thorpe429
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of bmanning at last Sunday's tasting. Boy oh boy do I love it being football season. There's nothing like 11 hours of football and casual tasting.

Served in a snifter.

Pours black with a quickly-diminishing off-white head. Sparse lacing and a bit of a collar. The nose brings forward chocolate and coffee and just a bit of oak and vanilla behind a fairly-heavy whiskey presence. The flavor isn't quite as whiskey heavy, but it's certainly the dominant component. Medium body with light sweetness and a chewy texture. Not their best stout, but quite good.

Photo of adam42381
4.87/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Cigar City snifter. Bottled on 7/3/11 printed on bottle. Purchased at Cigar City sometime in the summer of 2011.

Appearance: Pours almost pitch black with a 1/4 finger foamy light tan head which settles, leaving a nice ring around the glass and a little bit of pooling in the middle. Nice lacing.

Smell: Sweet malt, molasses, lightly roasted malt with a nice touch of sweet whiskey coming through in the background. Smells amazing.

Taste: Sweet roasted malt and molasses up front followed by a distinct sweet whiskey flavor in the middle before ending with the perfect blend of oaky woodiness to go along with a touch of toasted malt. Aftertaste is roasted malt and woody with a just the right amount of sweetness. The alcohol is extremely well-masked. The age (almost 17 months since it was bottled) has really done wonders from those compared to the reviews I read when it was fresh that said it was very hot.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied with just the right amount of carbonation. This one really coats the tongue.

Drinkability: Excellent drinkability. The alcohol is so well-hidden that I'm tempted to drink the entire 750ml bottle by myself. I'm putting a wine stopper in it and saving the rest to share with my wife tomorrow evening.

Overall: Excellent beer overall. I can't say enough good things about this one. I decided to crack this one tonight after my wife and I spoke with a realtor who will be listing our house for us. I figured that good news deserves a good beer. For those that drank it fresh and won't get the chance to try it with this kind of age on it, I'm sorry. This beer has come as close to perfection as I could imagine. There is almost no room for improvement here. This is the best Cigar City beer I've tried, and I've had well over 50 of their beers. If you ever have the chance to try it, make sure you do. It's a world class beer.

Photo of AgentZero
3.68/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to spycow for sharing this.

A - Black beer with a tiny brown head that didn't stick around long and didn't leave any traces of its existence.

S - Smells like a milk stout. Has some chocolate, bit of fruity whiskey, some wood. Not bad, but would of liked this to have more of a vanilla or roasted note to it than the fruity character the barrel semeed to give it.

T - Sweet chocolate, some oak, vanilla, slightly sweetened whiskey. This is decent and very drinkable, but much like the nose I would have preferred the whiskey to be richer and the beer hold up a little bit.

M - Medium bodied, creamy, soft carbonation.

O - Not a bad beer, drinks really easy. Not a world beater, but it was enjoyable. With some room for improvement, I'd look forward to trying the next batch or variation of this if they do one.

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Imperial Milk Porter - Stranahan Whiskey Barrel Aged from Cigar City Brewing
93 out of 100 based on 158 ratings.