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Dark Side Vanilla Porter - Empyrean Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dark Side Vanilla PorterDark Side Vanilla Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

273 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 273
Reviews: 129
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 13.59%
Wants: 21
Gots: 21 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Empyrean Brewing Company visit their website
Nebraska, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
An infusion of an old-world beer style and contemporary soul. Smooth, dark and roasted with highlights of chocolate, coffee and vanilla. Brewed with American, Canadian and English grown barley, American hops, Madagascar vanilla beans and natural vanilla extract.

23. IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-27-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 273 | Reviews: 129 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of philbe311
3.08/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A - A finger's worth of fizzy off-white colored head comprised of mainly medium-to-large sized bubbles... Very limited retention gives way to a splotchy lopsided lacing and uber thin collar... Mostly still with some very limited carbonation seen creeping towards the top of the glass... The color is a deep cola brown... Some unexpected floaties can be seen hanging around the bottom of the glass...

S - Please, but muted... Pleasant vanilla beans... Some faint cola... Very light cocoa... A hint weak coffee... Again, a very nice aroma, but very understated...

T - The nose was a very good indication of what to expect in terms of flavor... Understated with light notes of vanilla, coffee, cocoa, and flat cola...

M - Light to medium bodied... Just the slightest of carbonation... Thin... A bit chalky... Very uneventful... Pedestrian at best... I hate to use this descriptor, but quite boring...

D - A bit of a let down... A slightly above average appearance and aroma give way to a beer that is a disappointment in all other facets... The flavor is understated... The mouthfeel is down right poor... The end result is a brew that I would neither recommend or drink again... Sorry Empyrean, but this one was a big time miss for me...

philbe311, Jul 10, 2012
Photo of kojevergas
3.1/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a nonical pint glass in me gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average given the style.

Served straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a one finger head of fair cream, nice thickness, and average retention. Colour is a solid nontransparent black. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Vanilla, dark malts, light vague chocolate malt, and some cream. A mild strength aroma.

T: Chocolate malt, light vanilla, dark malts, and some cream. Pretty nicely balanced and built, if simple and unremarkable. Lacks complexity or subtlety. The vanilla is surprisingly light.

Mf: Smooth and wet, but with some unwelcome dryness on the climax. A touch too thick considering its lack of flavours. Carbonation is off.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable, but far from a great vanilla porter. It almost prioritizes its chocolate malt ahead of vanilla. I'd try it on draught - or ideally on nitro - but it's nothing to write home about. An enjoyable beer for the price.

C+

kojevergas, Jun 11, 2012
Photo of mwayne
4/5  rDev +8.7%

mwayne, Jun 10, 2012
Photo of JMBSH
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%

JMBSH, Jun 10, 2012
Photo of shebby
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

shebby, Apr 23, 2012
Photo of 6demonbag
4.5/5  rDev +22.3%

6demonbag, Apr 22, 2012
Photo of Jayschool
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Jayschool, Apr 21, 2012
Photo of JackieTH
3.23/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours an attractive dark brown with tan foam that persists with spotty lace. Smell is roasted malt elements with light vanilla, pretty mild but straightforward. Taste is lightly roasted malt, vanilla, coffee but these flavor elements are not well enough integrated and the body is too light leaving a slightly sour, watery aftertaste. This beer could be more robust.

JackieTH, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of mothman
2.48/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Color is a deep brown. Very light tan head.

Aroma: Artificial vanilla and chocolate. Caramel malt providing more sweetness on top of the vanilla. A light roast to it.

Taste: Mimics the nose. A lot of artificial vanilla. It stands out so much. Chocolate and some cocoa with roasted malts. Caramel.

Mouthfeel: Sticky sweet. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends a little dry.

Overall, I wasn't impressed with this porter. It tasted too fake for me. If you can get past that fact, it is okay.

mothman, Mar 31, 2012
Photo of cliveklg
5/5  rDev +35.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Love this artisan beer. Starts off a nice bold rich flavor, that goes down smooth. It is definitely a porter with it's flavor with a hint of vanilla going down.

But after it goes down the truly great surprise of this beer takes hold and the taste left in your mouth is the sweet vanilla flavor. No bitter after taste.

cliveklg, Mar 24, 2012
Photo of RDW
4/5  rDev +8.7%

RDW, Mar 04, 2012
Photo of Cramerican
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Cramerican, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of TippySelenoid
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.

Dark brown, hazy, cream colored head with little retention or lacing.

Roasted malt in the nose as well ad vanilla. Kind of nutmeggy.

Vanilla is up front. This beer is pretty sweet. Some roastiness comes through as well as some bittering hops.

This beer is medium bodied with a subtle carbonation. This beer leaves a film that I find cloying and unpleasant.

This beer is a bit above average. Not my thing though.

TippySelenoid, Feb 10, 2012
Photo of SalukiAlum
4/5  rDev +8.7%

SalukiAlum, Feb 08, 2012
Photo of budgood1
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

pours out of the twelve ounce stubby bottle a nearly opaque brownish-red colour with some cloudy russet highlights. frothy head dies to some scant bubbles and lingering lace. aroma is of lightly sweetened cocoa and some dark roasted malts. not picking up any vanilla and the overall nose is quite restrained. the taste profile picks things up a bit with the vanilla and milk chocolate notes complimenting the overall roastiness of the malts. even though this is bottle conditioned/unfiltered, it has very little yeast character. mildly astringent...medium sweetness...meekly hopped. true to the porter style with a lagerish body and easy to please mouthfeel. very nice drinkability. it's going to be easy to put away a handful of these.

overall a solid, but unspectacular vanilla porter, and i mean that in a postive way. no flavour dominates; supremely balanced and cleverly nuanced. as it warms a bit the overall profile is allowed to shine. recommended.

budgood1, Feb 05, 2012
Photo of fuzzcherry
4/5  rDev +8.7%

fuzzcherry, Jan 31, 2012
Photo of twiggamortis420
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle courtesy of SurlyTwinsFan. Pours a very dark brown color with a modest cap of tan head. Not much for retention, but lacing is decent.

Nose is, as expected, dusty chocolate and vanilla. Smells good, natural, clean and fresh...I like where this is headed.

Taste is pretty good, although I would like to see a little more sweetness and chocolate flavors. The vanilla comes through loud and clear, and there is a moderate nutty yeast presence. Finishes dry and the body is decent, but wouldnt hurt to be a little fuller and creamier. Some cereal grains come out as it warms. I think this one is pretty similar to Breckenridge Vanilla Porter...so if you like that, I see no reason why you wouldnt like this.

twiggamortis420, Jan 19, 2012
Photo of TrojanWheels
4/5  rDev +8.7%

TrojanWheels, Jan 18, 2012
Photo of ipcolling
4/5  rDev +8.7%

ipcolling, Jan 08, 2012
Photo of NoBeerLeftBehind
4/5  rDev +8.7%

NoBeerLeftBehind, Jan 04, 2012
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.65/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: dark brown to light black bodied beer that lets a little light through on the edges. 1 full finger of head that falls to a thin cap. Not much lacing to speak of here.

Smell: The vanilla is first to greet your nose. Not a heavy vanilla, just enough to let you know its there. Little coffee roasty note and cocoa.

Taste: This beer is actually not what I expected it to taste like based on the nose of this beer. The roasty malts with a mild coffee note overpowers the vanilla at the beginning of the beer. I thought the vanilla was going to be a quite a bit more substantial. Cocoa and bakers chocolate are prevalent mid palate. The vanilla notes are found in the aftertaste and they are not that sweet, but you know its vanilla.

Mouthfeel: Its on the light end of a medium bodied brew. The carbonation is at moderate levels. It an easy drinking porter. Might be just a little bit overcarbonated for my liking, but not by very much.

Overall: I always love the use of vanilla in dark beers. This beer is a really approachable porter that is simple, straight forward, and fairly tasty. It would be a good dark beer for someone who wants to introduce someone to dark beer or someone who wants an easy drinking vanilla porter.

4DAloveofSTOUT, Jan 03, 2012
Photo of distantmantra
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a straight pint glass.

A: The beer pours a very dark brown, almost black. As you titled the glass there are some tan and reddish-purple tones that become present. There is a dense head of tan foam which quickly dissipated down to nothing.

S: Very strong notes of coffee and vinegar in the nose. The vanilla is not present in the aroma whatsoever.

T: The vanilla is the dominant flavor here. There are hints of chocolate and coffee lingering the background, but Empyrean isn't joking when they call this a vanilla porter. Very smooth with nice sweet and bitter notes to balance it out.

M: The beer has a slightly thin/watery mouthfeel, I thought it would be bigger. Very drinkable.

O: This is a really nice porter, more on the light side of things. The vanilla is a nice change of pace and really makes this something that the non beer drinking might enjoy.

distantmantra, Dec 26, 2011
Photo of pokesbeerdude
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

pokesbeerdude, Dec 26, 2011
Photo of TATURBO
4/5  rDev +8.7%

TATURBO, Dec 22, 2011
Photo of Stouttyme
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Stouttyme, Dec 18, 2011
Dark Side Vanilla Porter from Empyrean Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 273 ratings.