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December 6th, 1855 EIP (East India Porter) - Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project

Not Rated.
December 6th, 1855 EIP (East India Porter)December 6th, 1855 EIP (East India Porter)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

173 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 173
Reviews: 109
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 9.86%
Wants: 39
Gots: 24 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
English Porter |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
According to Dann Paquette (the Brewer), this beer is a Porter, not an American Black Ale. It was brewed in London in 1855, so it is an English Porter.

(Beer added by: busterthecat on 05-04-2011)
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Ratings: 173 | Reviews: 109 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mdaschaf
mdaschaf

Washington

4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from notes. Grabbed a bottle of this when I was up in Boston a few weeks ago.

A: Pours a rather nice orange highlighted brown with 1 1.5 finger tan head that had very nice retention, sitting on top for quite some time before settling to a thin layer of foam on top. Decent lacing.

S: A bit of sweet maple syrup, roasted malt and grains, some nice chocolate and a little bit of coffee. Slight floral hop component, but rather faint compared to everything else going on.

T: Quite roasty up front with a little bit of coffee to go along with it. The midpalate has some nice milk chocolate and a slight hop bitterness. Very tasty.

M: Medium bodied with lively carbonation. Slight bitter finish.

O: Quite enjoyable. Easy drinking for the style, and not as hoppy as I was expecting. For once I don't mind that at all. I prefer there to be a slight break between the darker ales and ipas.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2011 20:27:35 | More by mdaschaf
Photo of puboflyons
puboflyons

New Hampshire

4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on August 17, 2011. What a fabulous presentation with the ribbon over the cap and the gray tone label that mixes 18th century calligraphy with modern sans serif typewriter font. The pour is a handsome but cloudy brown with a long lasting foamy head. The aromas are rich with baking chocolate, smoke, coffee, and hops. The body is full. The taste is bold with smoky chocolate with a near dry finale. It is also very drinkable. Excellent brew from Pretty Things.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2011 23:32:16 | More by puboflyons
Photo of washburnkid
washburnkid

New York

4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Awesome bottle, awesome looking beer. Muddy brown with a good top of tan head. Good retention and lacing.
S: Aromas are roasted chocolate and sweetened coffee.
T: Acidity really comes out with bitterness at the forefront. Very bitter chocolate comes out at the back and a few seconds after each sip, the roasty qualities are highlighted. I love the array of flavors in each sip, which covers the spectrum of bitter and floral to sweet and then to roastiness.
M: Medium to high carbonation gives this an extra refreshing bite.
D: Seriously yum. Solid solid porter.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2011 13:29:27 | More by washburnkid
Photo of glid02
glid02

Georgia

4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle purchased from Wine & Cheese Cask in Somerville.

Pours one shade from black with a tan head that leaves solid lacing.

Smells of smooth roasted malts with good amounts of dark and milk chocolate and deep pine hops. Also present are lighter, herbal hop notes.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Lightly roasted malts up front are joined quickly by pine hops with hints of deep citrus. Midway through smooth chocolate flavors come into play, fading out into a moderately bitter ending. Mouthfeel is very good, with grainy carbonation.

Overall nothing about this beer was over-the-top, instead it was a solid and easy-drinking beer made above average thanks to the mouthfeel. Well worth a shot.

Serving type: bottle

08-15-2011 23:18:06 | More by glid02
Photo of Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

4.43/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to Mess for this brew.

22oz. Bomber

Pours a nice brown color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger creamy tan head, with some nice sticky lacing to follow. The nose is malty, some very nice toffee notes, and chocolate hints. The taste is very nice malty, very nice toffee notes, and a touch of chocolate, slightly bitter. Medium Body. This one is very tasty, a joy to drink. Thanks Chris!

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2011 00:18:57 | More by Wasatch
Photo of jdhilt
jdhilt

New Hampshire

3.45/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a one-finger finger light tan head that fades quickly to a thin layer leaving traces of lace. Medium carbonation and heavy bodied. Deep brown almost black color, ton of yeast left in bottle. Nose is roasted coffee and flavor is roasted/burnt coffee. Lingering burnt coffee finish. $8.65 for a 22oz bottle from Colonial Spirits, Acton, MA.

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2011 22:11:11 | More by jdhilt
Photo of augustgarage
augustgarage

California

4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Courtesy of ShogoKawada (thanks!) - poured from a 22oz bomber into my Samuel Smith nonic.

Not quite opaque bistre body with a creamy beige head. Good retention, rich lacing, and glassy legs.

Intense roast barley notes - suggesting coffee, tar, and a hint of toffee.

Bittersweet palate entry suggests a fine unsweetened chocolate with hints of tobacco and leather as the ale warms. Subdued but lasting bitterness is accompanied by mild alfalfa/hay, but the hop flavors are fleeting. Bread crusts, coffee, pecans, and burnt sugar show up in the finish.

Creamy, medium-bodied, and somewhat astringent (due to the roast levels). ABV is perfect.

This could be outstanding on cask, though it isn't bad in the bottle. Lacking the multiple layers of roast that my favorite examples sometimes exhibit, this is a robust and direct porter none the less - very enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2011 04:05:13 | More by augustgarage
Photo of ms11781
ms11781

Massachusetts

4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into an imperial pint glass.

Pours an extremely murky, deep brown with a huge, foamy tan head. Head dissipates a bit but a nice, creamy looking finger of foam sticks around for the entire time it took to drink the beer. Really excellent head retention. Nice, thick foamy lacing is left on the glass as well.

Huge roasted malt character leads the way in the nose. As it warms a hint of a sweet, brown sugar-like aroma shows up as does a bit of cocoa. Really though, it's a good dose of some dark roasted malt that stands out the most.

After the first sip it's clear that the nose is just setting the stage for the flavors in the taste. The dark roasted base is here and seems to be present throughout each sip, but a good deal of other flavors come out as well. A subtle chocolate note is present as well as some molasses and the sweet, sugary character that was in the nose. Some earthy hops are here and the beer finishes semi-dry with a nice bitterness that plays very well with the flavor profile.

The body seems to be on the higher end of medium with carbonation on the lower end of medium. It leaves the beer with a smooth and creamy feeling on the palate while still being pretty light. Normally a beer with such a smooth, creamy mouthfeel has a heavier body but this never feels quite that full. Pretty impressive.

Once again, Pretty Things makes a very good beer that defies categorization. It definitely has aspects of a porter, and is probably closest to a porter if it had to be categorized but it has aspects that fit in line with stouts, brown ales and even IPAs in some respect (maybe Black IPAs). Definitely a nice, interesting and flavorful beer, especially at a lower ABV.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2011 03:26:04 | More by ms11781
Photo of deltatauhobbit
deltatauhobbit

Maine

3.78/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another interesting beer from Pretty Things.

This one pours a muddy brown color with a thinnish tan head, head doesn't last long but does leave some patches of bubbles on top, not much lacing on the glass.

Smell has an odd mix of chocolaty roasted malt with musty hops and a tinge of pine.

Taste has a more upfront hop aspect with a long lingering bitterness, it isn't a harsh bitterness because of the roasted malt presence, it's actually like a burnt bitterness with a piney presence, carbonation is right in the range it's supposed to be and helps lends a touch of creaminess.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2011 21:03:29 | More by deltatauhobbit
Photo of EgadBananas
EgadBananas

Louisiana

4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown, muddy liquid. Head was a tan shade, but didn't stay around for too long, dissipating to nothing.

Aroma packs a big coffee and roast punch. Hops are distant if at all in the nose, but I shouldn't be thinking ABA anyhow.

Big bitter hop taste comes through with a vengeance. Roasted notes, chocolate, lighter coffee notes.

The feel is near medium in body, very slick, slight creamy texture. I bit heavier woud be good, but for an EIPA, it's right good.

Don't go into this with any preconceived notions, because I think it will end up being vastly different than you imagine. But it's a very nice brew and I'm honored to have tried a bit of beer history!

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2011 16:06:47 | More by EgadBananas
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

dark brown liquid that was only barely translucent. Huge head of tan foam on the top that settled down only briefly to coat the sides of the glass with a thick, spider like web of lace. Dark roasted malts are all over the aroma. Notes of molasses, cocoa, hints of brown sugar and light touches of everything from licorice to dark fruits. As it warmed it got a touch one sided as some elements of peat started to break the surface. But taken the first sip all was forgotten. Just huge rich notes of chocolate malts and a touch of licorice just come across the tongue in waves of flavor. Rich and very sweet, hints of molasses and roasted coffee now come across the tongue. Very well put together

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2011 02:10:24 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of ppoitras
ppoitras

Massachusetts

4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle purchased as a single at Yankee Spirits, Sturbridge, MA. Cap tape "Once upon a time... 12-6-1855".

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" tan head over the murky, almost opaque reddish brown brew. Head holds steady, with sticky, slow-falling lace. Aroma is dark malts and anise.

Taste starts deep and worty, roasted chocolate in the middle, and finds the anise and some burnt coffee coming on at the close, with a lingering alcohol tinge to keep the dark flavors company. Mouthfeel is velvety smooth, and drinkability is very good. This one retains it's use from even way back then. Yum.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2011 00:42:19 | More by ppoitras
Photo of Sam21
Sam21

Connecticut

3.68/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle purchased for $7.99. Original recipe was brewed on 12/6/1855. Poured into snifter.

Appearance – Dark cola brown with murky clarity. Wonderful creamy khaki head with good lacing and retention.

Smell – Burnt sugar, charred malt, rich fig jam, and a boatload of earthy hob character. Overall, it feels a bit rustic and unrefined.

Taste – Sweet sugary malt, bitter burnt roasted malt, perhaps a hint of vanilla, and rounded out by a heavily hopped finish. Earthy, herbal, with a sharp bite that cuts through the malts. Bitterness lingers alongside smoky burnt malt with hints of dark chocolate.

Mouthfeel – Soft medium body. Smooth carbonation. Pleasant all around.

Drinkability – I love the idea behind the Once Upon a Time beers. Taking a look into the past and reviving an original recipe. This is a unique beer with rough charred edges and a boatload of hops. Really great with steak and dark chocolate. Great stuff, Pretty Things.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2011 18:43:29 | More by Sam21
Photo of Jwale73
Jwale73

Rhode Island

4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz. bottle served at 53 degrees in my Lost Abbey tumbler. Pours a semi-hazy brownish mahogany with a half inch, dense, khaki-colored head. Head eventually settles into a consistent quarter inch cap. Textured bands of lacing are revealed during the tasting. Great nose - roast, mocha notes, lactose, artificial sweetener and a faint piney/citrus quality. Taste consistent with nose - lactose creaminess really comes out in the flavor profile, as well as a trace of char and a piny/herbal bitterness at the finish. Mouthfeel is medium-light with a lively carbonation and a pleasant, creamy texture. I wasn't sure what to expect based on the description, but I get something of a porter/black IPA hybrid from this beer. Well worth your time if you have the opportunity to try this one.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2011 00:27:01 | More by Jwale73
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki

Illinois

3.9/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I purchased a bottle of this at New Beer Distributors in NYC. My wife ended up drinking it as I couldn't fit it into my luggage to bring back. Thanks to Chris (spycow) for allowing me another crack at it.

A - Creamy, light tan foam that settles to a collar and some film, leaving minimal lace. Pretty light in color for a porter - more of a cherry brown color.

S - Smell is a pleasant blend of roasted barley, chocolate, molasses, cola, nuts, and some floral hop character that confirms the "East India" part of the name.

T - Caramel, milk chocolate, roasted grains, and light coffee, followed by fairly intense hop bitterness. Taste is actually more evocative of the (admittedly poorly-defined) American Black Ale style. In any case, it's not a very heavy beer.

M - Medium body, zesty medium-highcarbonation, slightly gritty texture, and no obvious alcohol.

D - I thought this was a pretty successful brew - I'm curious as to the actual historical accuracy of the recipe, but it's a nice hoppy porter/Black IPA hybrid. The bitterness gets a bit fatiguing, but otherwise the low alcohol and nice flavors make it quite easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2011 20:42:15 | More by MasterSki
Photo of jrallen34
jrallen34

Illinois

2.55/5  rDev -38.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to Chris for this, how in the heck is this on the buzzed list... light brown with an amber hue, light tope head, ok retention and lacing... the nose is all black ipa, a hint of yogurt, ok... the taste is not good, all roasted soap, not worthing trying

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2011 04:57:33 | More by jrallen34
Photo of bcm119
bcm119

California

4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A semi opaque brown colored beer with a fine tan froth that sticks around. Dry, toasty malt, more in the way of bittersweet chocolate, woodsmoke and burnt molasses than dark fruit. Hops are dominant, with a nice green stalk flavor. Fresh and bitter, leaving little malt sweetness on the palate. A little sting of mineral/metal in the finish, which is otherwise all hops. Tight, clean, bitter. My kind of porter-- reminds me of several Northwest beers I used to enjoy in OR.

Serving type: bottle

07-08-2011 03:39:35 | More by bcm119
Photo of VelvetExtract
VelvetExtract

Massachusetts

4.28/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A-Pours a soda color. A lighter tan head forms from the pour and retains very well. Rings of lace stripe the glass. An attractive porter. I have come to love how porters look. Dark, yet still showcasing some highlights of color when held up to light. This one is a looker.

S-Smell roasty and milk chocolatey. Textbook porter aroma with a subtle yet noticeable hop kick. Alcohol is a non-factor in the nose. Just has a nice standard porter aroma.

T-Yum. This is a pretty aggressive tasting porter. The hops surprisingly attack the palate before any other flavors. Piney and some floral hops lead to some lasting bitterness. After the hops comes those great roasty, coffee, and chocolatey flavors. Much more flavor than expected from seeing the %6 ABV. One of the more bitter porters I have had.

M-Medium to heavy on the body. A bit slick. Very soft carbonation. Good feel. Dry from the bitterness.

O/D-Pretty things is just a very solid brewery. This may be my favorite offering from them. I love their saisons and I really loved American Darling. This actually is on par with the latter. Nothing Pretty Things makes is less than a really good time. What a big porter; especially for the ABV. Had been putting off trying this one; won't be doing that again with this brewery!

Serving type: bottle

07-08-2011 02:48:32 | More by VelvetExtract
Photo of GbVDave
GbVDave

Illinois

4.28/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into two pint glasses. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist! Extra special thanks to jayli for this from our most recent trade!

A: Pours a sludgy/muddy, deep cola brown. Actually kind of skanky looking. What saves it is the creamy, dark khaki layer of foam that reached about three fingers before slowly laying down to a thick collar and skim that left a bunch of lace.

S: Heavily roasted malt, cola nut, dark fruit, cocoa, bakers chocolate, and fudge icing. Actually, this reeks of chocolate! Some piney hops sneak in as it warms and assert themselves in a very good way.

T: See above. Killer chocolate-y flavors that mash it up with some piney/grassy hops and a bit of the dark roast coffee. Very nice balance between chocolate, hops, and ample roasted malt flavors.

M: Starts with some slick fullness that grabs some spicy dryness from the hops and roasted malts. Finishes with a subtle wave of espresso type bitterness that acts as a palate cleanser.

O: Another fine historical experiment from the folks at Pretty Things. Hopefully this isn't a one-off and enters their regular rotation.

Serving type: bottle

07-03-2011 19:13:05 | More by GbVDave
Photo of Krakistophales
Krakistophales

California

4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours really dark brown with a minimal tan head that recedes quickly.

S: Sweet, caramel malts, dark roast, a bit of smoke, and a very dry sort of bitterness, kinda like an espresso bitter smell but very faint.

T: Lots of woody, earthy, smoky flavor notes coming forward right away, then quickly touched on by some sweet malts, and finished with a very dry, bitter, but clean sort of coffee/roast finish. Quite tasty, and dangerously drinkable.

O: This has made me reconsider pretty things after having their terrible quad. This is a fine ale, and I can so imagine some officers in an english style pub swilling this down. Quite a glimpse into the past.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2011 03:56:52 | More by Krakistophales
Photo of ryan1788a5
ryan1788a5

Massachusetts

4.6/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz bomber poured into a New Belgium globe.

A: Pours a beautiful opaque brown. a two inch khaki-colored head crowns the beer and leaves behind a light slip of lacing. Retention is good.

S: Huge hits of caramel, toffee, and freshly roasted coffee. Smokey and minerally scents as well. Milk chocolate. Hops are European. Earthy and floral.

T: Sweet cola followed by caramel and toffee. Mineral tastes. Fig and date fruit tastes. Very smokey mid palate. Bitter dark chocolate and bitter black coffee. Hops are floral, but really only background noise. Long, intense finish with black coffee, dark chocolate, and smoke featured prominently. An assault on the taste buds. Excellent.

M: Moderately thick, very creamy and slick. Almost velvety. Low carbonation. Very good.

O: A damn fine beer.

Notes: This is one great porter. The finish lasts for days, and it's packed chock full of vibrant tastes. If this is anything like what the British were drinking in the 1800s, they were truly spoiled. The history buff in me is really loving Pretty Things' dedication to these recreations too. Keep up the good work guys (and ladies).

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2011 21:22:55 | More by ryan1788a5
Photo of ptykozoon
ptykozoon

California

3.03/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a seriously creamy brown. Lots of lacing, frothy head. Looks great, dense and inviting.

Cocoa, earthy hops.

Oak, burnt coffee, earthy notes. Kind of boring, neither the hops nor porter aspects really stand out, everything just tastes passable.

Dry and bitter mouthfeel. Light to medium bodied.

Not really complex or interesting but certainly not bad.

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2011 01:41:28 | More by ptykozoon
Photo of Pinto21
Pinto21

Arizona

4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep dark brown, ok 1 finger light tan head that faded after a minute.
Malts jump up at your nose. Toasted, sweet, roast, molasses.

Hmm nice porter taste. Toasted and roasted with a nice hop bitterness. There is some hop taste, but definitely a porter with toasted up front with some sweetness and molasses, then going to roasted, and finishing with a hop bitterness to balance it all out.

Very very solid porter. Very pleased with this one. Thought it would be hoppier, but a great porter.

Serving type: bottle

06-29-2011 23:26:22 | More by Pinto21
Photo of mcallister
mcallister

Ohio

4.6/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Deep crimson mahogany colored with a large semi-fluffy off white head holding stead fast with great retention leaving thick sticky lace. Very nice sexy beer.

Wonderful nose of molasses, beet sugar, brunt caramel, toffee, roasted malts, cocoa, earthy hops, dank and a bit wretched. Dried fruits, raisin, prune, fig, and date with plummy notes as well. Fantastic smelling porter.

And the taste follows suit of the nose. Rich and roasty and very bitter. Dark cocoa like tannins which I believe are from the roasted malt, and flavors of unroasted barley. Very pruney in the mouth with raisin and fig about. Bakers chocolate, earthy hops, tobacco and leather. Semi sweetness in the way of burnt sugar and caramel is swiftly dried out in the long chewy finish. Some red currant flavors and molasses rule the palate on the finish and in the middle. Possibly my favorite porter I've had, but hard to say. So much going on and so complex.

Serving type: on-tap

06-29-2011 22:01:56 | More by mcallister
Photo of rowingbrewer
rowingbrewer

Massachusetts

4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one solid beer, I have had both on tap and bottles, but enjoyed the tap better so i will review it as on tap

The beer pours a dark brown to almost black with very little to no light getting through. the head is tan and thick and holds to the side of the glass. the smell is rich roasty and hoppy. the flavor follows suit with a bit of hop flavor melded together with the roasted malt flavor, followed by a nice bitter finish. the mouthfeel is medium bodied and low to medium carbonation. overall a really excellent brew.

Serving type: on-tap

06-29-2011 14:13:14 | More by rowingbrewer
December 6th, 1855 EIP (East India Porter) from Pretty Things Beer & Ale Project
92 out of 100 based on 173 ratings.