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Gatekeeper - Indigo Imp Brewery

Not Rated.
GatekeeperGatekeeper

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
76
okay

64 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 64
Reviews: 43
rAvg: 3.28
pDev: 20.12%
Wants: 0
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Indigo Imp Brewery visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
ABV - 5%, IBUs - 40, OG - 55

(Beer added by: adamette on 08-11-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 64 | Reviews: 43 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jampics2
4.35/5  rDev +32.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

NOTE - just wanted to update this (5/15/10). I had another bottle this past weekend, and this has gone to the sour side, I think it's even being marketed as a sour now. However, it was a good porter before the infection took over, now it's an "interesting" sour - just realize my review isn't for the beer that this beer currently is!

*8/15/2009 review below, bottle was 2 weeks old*

I liked Jester better than others who reviewed it here but thought their first two releases (Bombshell and Winter Solstace) were sub-standard, so I was thrilled to hear the Imp was putting out a porter. Now we're talking, at least with the style being more up my alley.

Poured into a pint glass from a 12oz bottle purchased in a six pack from Whole Foods. Pours dark brown almost black with a bit of head. LOTS of sed. in the bottom of the bottle, but it was pretty caked so it didn't make it in my beer. I noticed most of it when rinsing out the bottle.

Smells nice and roasty. Well balanced and not too gimmicky - this is what a nice American handcrafted porter should smell like.

Taste is impressive. A bit one dimensional when compared to other porters like Ed. Fitz and Founders in that it's all about the roast, not some sweet chocolate or coffee tastes. Also not heading into Baltic territory. But this is actually REALLY well done in that it's beer, not chocolate beer or coffee beer, but a nicely balanced roasty porter with just enough hops to give it the right finish. Mouthfeel is right-on for a porter, not too stout-heavy like the Founders tends to be.

Drinkability suffered a tad b/c the roast can decimate one's palatte and makes me crave a bit of a mix-up, but I bet it would be have been great with some cheese. The last 1/4 was the best, as it really opened up and got fluid and favor-cohesive.

Congrats to the Imp on the best offering yet. I'll buy more right away and will be including these as extras in trades to spread this great porter. Afterwards, I had a pint of Ed Fitz from my kegerator and, honestly, I liked the Imp more. So you won this battle, let's hope you make it for the war :)

Worth searching out if you're a porter fan.

jampics2, Aug 15, 2009
Photo of adamette
4.22/5  rDev +28.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Live review. Poured from a bottle that I bought as a part of a 6 pack for $9.39 at Heinen's in Mayfield Heights earlier today. Notes from the web site: "The first batch of our new beer will be on sale at the Imp Store this Friday the 7th of August. Gatekeeper is a Robust Porter brewed with Black and Caramel malt. It has a malty aroma and flavor with a moderate bitterness in the finish from a combination of the black malt and hops." So today is the 10th...this is just about as fresh as you can get! Poured into my Samuel Smith pint glass.

A Ink black body and almost no head whatsoever after I poured per the instructions on the label. Good look.

S Very good smell. Reminds of some of the better Porters/stouts such as Southern Tier Choklat or even DFH Palo Santo Marron. It just REMINDS me of those, it is not the SAME as those. Really though, dark roast malt, nice dark chocolate notes. Interesting, inviting. It is difficult to resist drinking this one.

T Why resist? Great deep, dark roast with chocolate and even maybe some coffee notes. It could also be the caramel coming through as well. Any caramel is like one of those awesome dark caramels, not cheap dime store caramel. Delicious, complex, interesting. This is, by far, my favorite Indigo Imp beer.

M Moderate mouthfeel with big dark malt and other tastes and moderate syrupy feel but it is not as sticky, chewy as others in its spectrum.

D It was easy enough to drink.

Notes: Indigo Imp impresses with this one.

adamette, Aug 11, 2009
Photo of JCrazy84
4.1/5  rDev +25%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a deep brown, darker than black coffee. Small, darker head.

Smell: Smell is coffee, with a few caramel notes.

Taste: Taste is very heavy coffee, with some caramel backing. There is also this lingering taste that I can only describe as campfire ash, but it adds a dimension that I enjoy.

Mouthfeel: Thin, but I don't like heavy porters. If I was in a porter mood, I would drink this all night.

Overall: I really enjoyed this brew and would buy it again for a porter friendly crowd.

JCrazy84, Mar 17, 2012
Photo of JamnesCameron
4.05/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter.

Pours a jet black, unusual for a porter. Expected some lighter tones around the edges, nothing but midnight black. Mocha colored head rises up quickly, then drops to a thin layer of foam on top. Nice lacing expected.

Aromas of dusty, dark roasted grains, a graininess, some dark roasted coffee, hint of cocoa. Other than the roasty notes, an otherwise "clean" smelling beer.

Flavors of a light bodied, iced mocha java. Cocoa, coffee, creamy sweetness. No hop flavor noted. Roasted graininess isn't deep, kept light. Finish is short, like sweet iced coffee.

Mouthfeel is light, a little too light for me. Almost watery. Some carbonation prickle, which comes with a little harshness.

Overall drinkability is good, but this is a much lighter version of an American Porter, or Robust Porter, than I was expecting. This is sessionable. Very flavorful.

JamnesCameron, Feb 20, 2011
Photo of JoePat
4.03/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark brown almost black with a tan head that dissipates quickly.

Chocolate, slight roasted malts, fruity esters, and a little something that I just can't place. A little ash?

Flavor is very similar to a good porter with a little twange just under the flavor. The ash I smelt comes through in the flavor as well but very light. I get a little acidic flavor at the end but it is a very smooth and almost sweet flavor.

The mouthfeel is a bit on the light side for a porter but with the almost certain infection it is expected.

The light acidic finish goes well with the porter sweetness making a more drinkable porter.

JoePat, Sep 22, 2010
Photo of WVbeergeek
4/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep chocolate dark ruby roasted malts and a thicket of caramel tan head, leaving behind fine speckled lacing. Aroma has dark mild chocolate with roasted chest nutes and a hint of dark coffee and mild fruitiness. Flavor is a soured dark robust porter after having open fermentation performed, milk dark chocolate notes with a slight twinge of soured yogurt. Low carbonation hints of funky and soured ale notes bring out dark chocolate undertones and mild oak barrel notes...actual enjoyable hints of oak dark malts and apple fruitiness. This is an experimental brewery nothing like it around here except for Jolly Pumpkin with all open fermentation why not in Ohio, I'm liking these sour ales because of the open fermentation just adds a mature level to these brews, I'm glad my palate is ready for this stuff...it's been excellent each and every bottle. There's got to be a market out there for these style especially after open ferementation effects take on.

WVbeergeek, May 01, 2011
Photo of pathman
4/5  rDev +22%

pathman, Jul 14, 2013
Photo of OWSLEY069
4/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light brown to black in color with a light chocolate brown head. In the aroma, chocolate, coffee, and notes of caramel sweetness. In the taste, caramel sweet coffee and chocolate. A nice hop bite and medium to bigger bodied mouthfeel, with a dry coffee and note of caramel sweetness in the aftertaste. A nice rich porter.

OWSLEY069, Dec 31, 2011
Photo of GeorgeCarroll
4/5  rDev +22%

GeorgeCarroll, Aug 28, 2014
Photo of IAmHollywood13
4/5  rDev +22%

IAmHollywood13, Jun 09, 2014
Photo of LiquidCucumber
3.88/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Very dark, the faintest of light peers through the edges of the glass. A finger of foamy head which dissipates quickly but leaves a small head for a while.

S - Chocolatey malts up front with a deep roast that reminds me a bit of toast. I get hints of coffee and prunes as well.

T - Chalky, sweet malts come first with a touch of raisin/prune. Rounded out with a light touch of savory roast and a slight hop bite. Not too complex, but still tasty.

M - Overly-carbed and light in body even for a porter, yet still creamy.

D - Not a bad beer by any means, maybe not the best, but worth trying if you are a fan of American Porters.

LiquidCucumber, Oct 01, 2010
Photo of Brenden
3.83/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Gatekeeper is dark brown with some lighter edges. It's in a good range for a porter, not as heavy as a stout. A good-sized medium-brown head keeps itself moderately well and leaves similarly moderate lacing.
The aroma is robust, with a strong malt foundation showing a bit of roast leaning toward char. It balances against the sweet and mildly tangy notes of dark fruits.
More of that melding of sweet and tart dark fruits blends really well on the palate. It remains robust in the flavor and offers up that bit of charred wood with absolutely no acridity. It's well done all in all.
The medium body may be a little light for a robust porter but it's still pretty rich. It also is light on the crispness (carbonation could lay off just a notch), and smoothness is in every sip.

Brenden, Jun 11, 2013
Photo of Bung
3.75/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. Picked up in Columbus. Dark brown pour, light tan head .

Aroma, malt and milk chocolate.

Taste, chocolate, malt up front, fades to a tart cherry. A nice roast, light coffee, heavy cocoa finish.

A little over carbonated, light side of medium. A little dry, but drinks pretty easy still. Obviously abv is not a problem.
Thought this was pretty good.

Bung, Mar 28, 2012
Photo of DES8888
3.75/5  rDev +14.3%

DES8888, Oct 02, 2013
Photo of vickival
3.75/5  rDev +14.3%

vickival, Aug 10, 2014
Photo of JacketIPA
3.75/5  rDev +14.3%

JacketIPA, Sep 03, 2014
Photo of Ozzylizard
3.75/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

No date bottle at cellar temo into goblet
Aroma slightly milky
Head small (! cm), light brown, frothy, fully diminishing
No lacing
Body dark brown, hazy (bottle conditioned)
Initial flavor moderately sweet, slight coffee aftertaste without bitterness, no diacetyl
Medium body, creamy, carbonation soft

This is an interesting beer which always puzzles me; it seems to be a "real ale", if not by CAMRA definition at least by taste. Some of II's beer is produced in a stainless steel coolship, a process used by both Theakston and Sam Smith.
If you're ever in Cleveland on Friday afternoon, check out the brewery and try what's on tap.

Ozzylizard, Dec 22, 2013
Photo of GilGarp
3.68/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to jampics2 for the nice unexpected extras in trade including this.

12 oz. bottle with yellow wax and a pull string. Really nice packaging for such a small brewery. I only wish there was a date but I do know that the trade was at least 18 months ago.

Enjoyed in honor of the Buckeyes playing tonight against the Razorbacks in the Sugarbowl. GO BUCKS!

Served cool into a goblet, Gatekeeper is a dark chestnut brown color with good clarity. The head is just like a coke - fizzy and gone in less than 5 seconds. No lacing of course.

Aroma is quite nice considering there is no carbonation to deliver it to my nose. It has a really nice roasty malt quality. Very enjoyable here.

Flavor is pretty good but not great. The roasted malt gives some coffee notes but they are almost overwhelmed by a tart cherry sweetness. Oxidation? Possible, but surprising given the wax-covered cap.

Mouthfeel is light in body for a porter and the carbonation is not nearly as creamy as I would have hoped. Not heavily carbonated but too fizzy.

Overall not the greatest porter. Great Lakes makes a legendary one just down the street.

GilGarp, Jan 05, 2011
Photo of OldSchoolGamer
3.68/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have had all the beers in the Indigo Imp lineup, and so far they have all been average at best. Here is my review of their latest offering.

A: Pours a pitch black color. No light penetrates the beer at all. Head is minimal.

S/T: The aroma is very similar to a Sweet Stout. Very sweet with caramel and smokey undertones. The taste is pretty decent. The smokey character carries over in the flavor. It does have that Sweet Stout quality in there as well. Slightly roasty with a nice coffee aftertaste. Similar to Bells Double Cream Stout.

M/D: Medium to heavy bodied beer. Somewhat creamy. A little thicker than the average Porter. Finish is slightly dry. More of a sipping beer. Overall drinks very well. Nothing harsh or off-putting about it at all.

This is definetly Indigo Imp's best beer yet, however it is not quite up to craft beer standards set by brewers like Founders, Great Divide, or Southern Tier. I would buy this again, but I am still waiting for this company to have a truely stellar release. Worth checking out.

OldSchoolGamer, Aug 13, 2009
Photo of bluejacket74
3.58/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to TrebleStauter for this brew, it was a pretty nice extra (from a trade earlier today). I've been wanting to try something from Indigo Imp for a while now, so that worked out good! 12 ounce bottle, dipped in wax. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours dark brown with about a half inch brown head that went away pretty quickly. Not too much lacing, either. Aroma is roasted malt, caramel, bittersweet chocolate and coffee. However, the taste is different. There's the typical porter flavors of roasted malt, chocolate and caramel, but there's also a slightly tart citrusy/fruity flavor (that's hard to describe) too. I wouldn't say it's sour, but there's a definite tang to it. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's a bit slick and has decent carbonation. Drinkability is good, it didn't take me too long to finish this one. I have to say this is a unique brew. It's definitely worth a try, I'd like to try this again and some of Indigo Imp's other brews soon.

bluejacket74, Jul 10, 2010
Photo of nubz77
3.58/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Since this was from a small brewery I'd never heard of, I didn't have high expectations, but I'm willing to try just about anything. I was pleasantly surprised.

Dark brownish color, and the smell is of nice roasty grains. As others have said it's a little on the thin side though. The best aspect in my mind is the excellent balance between the roasted coffee/burnt sugar flavors from the malt, and the hops, neither of which dominates.

Easy session beer, I'd definitely have one again.

nubz77, Dec 03, 2011
Photo of meatyard
3.58/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nearly opaque black/brown with a short tan head that quickly falls to a ring around the edge of the glass.
The smell is a nice toasty malt.
The taste is a tangy, toasty malt without much else happening.
Mouthfeel is on the thin side tending toward dry.
Drinkability:It's pretty simplistic, uncomplicated but still OK. This could use some tweaking but if a light, tangy porter suits you OK then this is not too bad.

meatyard, May 08, 2010
Photo of Stinkypuss
3.53/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Indigo Imp Gatekeeper

Pours a dark brown color with an off white head and little in the way of lace or retention. Roasted malts in the aroma, with mild coffee notes as well. In the flavor, roasted malts again up front with a deep black coffee flavor which gives way to a mild tangy nearing tart aftertaste. The presence of wild yeasts and open fermentation has a small footprint on this beer, but its there. Big roast, coffee, cocoa and a mild sour tang. Gatekeeper makes for a nice beer, and interesting enough to keep the sips coming.

Stinkypuss, Aug 19, 2011
Photo of Sammy
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a bit thick black with dark brown dense soapy head. Decent roasty aroma. Taste is balanced, a tad sweet combined with mild astringency and a drop of burnt malt. Good drinkability, medium mouthfeel although a bit oily.Serviceable porter. Suitable carbonation.

Sammy, May 02, 2010
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Gatekeeper from Indigo Imp Brewery
76 out of 100 based on 64 ratings.