1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Victory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial Porter - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Victory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial PorterVictory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
98
world-class

4,094 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,094
Reviews: 956
rAvg: 4.39
pDev: 9.11%
Wants: 755
Gots: 811 | FT: 62
Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
"Imperial Porter"

(Beer added by: radshoesbro on 03-17-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Victory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial Porter Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,094 | Reviews: 956 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beer2day
4.48/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark black pour, 1-fingeer of dense rich chocolate head. Not much in the way of retention. Decent, but sparse, lace.

Rich, decadent nose. Strong with roast coffee, vanilla bean, chocolate syrup, and cream. Really invites you in.

The taste doesn't fail the nose. Lots of roast coffee, but really strong vanilla flavor. Coffee bitters in the finish are very strong for a porter. Pretty nice chocolate malt balance, too, with roast flavors.

Feel is lighter than the rich flavor suggests, but this is porter not stout so that is quite welcome.

I'd get this again ... and again ...

beer2day, Apr 13, 2012
Photo of Ruds
4.78/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz/650ml bottle into a growler, thanks to Deeblo for packing this in his case and shifting it 6,000 miles for me!!!

Looks a real treat - pours a rich black with a decent beige/tan head after a straight glass/vigourous pour into a Belgian snifter. Head thins after a minute but retains. Lots of lacing above the beer line.

Served at room temperature.

Great smelling beer - coffee hits you immediately and when you withdraw your nose and savour the full spectrum you get the vanilla breaching through, sweet chocolate and malts.

Everything I want from an Imperial Porter in the taste! Chocolate, coffee, sweet and roasted malts and a decent hunk of vanilla in there. I've had a few vanilla porters where you just don't get that 'V' hit, but here you have no choice !!! A well balanced beer packing flavours and strength but disguising them all well.

The mouthfeel is perfection for a beer of this ilk. Full bodied with a little carbonation, every mouthful makes you return.

Overall - this beer is right up there for me, one of the best I've had !!!

Ruds, Apr 09, 2012
Photo of DSlim71
4.15/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Bomber pours pitch black with a dark tan head that hangs around for a few minutes. Some nice, spotty lacing is left behind after the head is gone.

S - Coffee right away with vanilla coming through pretty strongly. A little char, roastiness, and dark chocolate.

T - Same thing with the taste, you get the coffee up front but the vanilla takes over, maybe a little too much. The dark chocolate is there, and it's a little boozy, especially as it warms. Finishes with a roasted bitterness.

M - Creamy, medium bodied with a low to mid level of carbonation.

I picked this up in a bottle shop in PA, and I'm glad I did. It was a nice sipper to finish off the weekend, but the heavy vanilla kept it from being great in my opinion.

DSlim71, Apr 09, 2012
Photo of IPx
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

IPx, Apr 09, 2012
Photo of JohneHoodlum
5/5  rDev +13.9%

JohneHoodlum, Apr 09, 2012
Photo of CTBeerPope
4.38/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this a while back

Pours black chocolate. 2 finger dense fluffy head that sticks around for a little bit great lacing. Really nice looking porter.

Smells a lot like a good RIS with coffee, vanilla and dark fruits standing out.

Very smooth for a 10% abv. Nice natural vanilla flavor upfront followed by a combination of coffee and chocolate with the coffee riding all the way thru to the back.

Full mouthfeel with modest carbonation

Have to travel to get this one but well worth the trip. One of the best, if not the best, porter's I've had.

CTBeerPope, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of Stumpy29er
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

Stumpy29er, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of zeledonia
3.85/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I'm pretty sure this is from the most recent release. Best before 18 June 2012. One of my more wanted beers, pretty excited to try it.

Pours very dark brown, nearly black, and opaque except at the very edges. One finger of medium-tan head, good retention, some okay lacing. Looks like a stout. Or a very dark porter.

Smell is a cacophony of roast, vanilla, coffee, and more vanilla. It smells more like the additives than it does like beer. Very heavy on the vanilla - wish it were toned down so that I could enjoy some of the other smells I suspect are hidden behind it. Warm and fuzzy, but I want beer with my vanilla.

Same thing goes here. Holy vanilla, batman. I like the taste better than the smell, as there's more porter flavor in there to complement it. But I still think it's overdone. I get minimal coffee flavor, and I have to work to find the characteristics of the malts (a little char, a little nutty). Finishes roasty bitter. Good, but I think it could be a lot better. I will say, though, that it drinks well below its ABV. I can't even find the alcohol behind that bludgeoning of flavor.

Mouthfeel is really smooth. Body is surprisingly light, lifted up by a foamy mouth-filling expansion. It's like cotton candy in reverse - starts out relatively flat, but buoys up as it moves through my mouth. Long-lasting finish.

Drinkable, yes. Amazing, no. I think it would be a whole lot better with 1/2 the vanilla. It's unbalanced, with the vanilla enjoying the only spotlight, rather than sharing the stage with the rest of the cast. All that said, it's pretty tasty, and I'm liking it more as the bottle gets more empty.

zeledonia, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of cvm4
4.73/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a snifter

A - 2 finger tan head with a black body. Some lacing once drank down.

S - Picking up some huge notes of malt, dark chocolate and coffee.

T - Wow! A lot of coffee and dark bitter chocolate is coming through! There is a sweeter side of vanilla on the finish.

M - On the full side of medium. Very creamy!

O - What a porter! In everyday life, this could be a stout!

cvm4, Apr 08, 2012
Photo of BeerAcolyte
2.75/5  rDev -37.4%

BeerAcolyte, Apr 07, 2012
Photo of ElGallo
3.75/5  rDev -14.6%

ElGallo, Apr 07, 2012
Photo of ImperialSloth
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

ImperialSloth, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of Evan
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Evan, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of jrcmlc
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

jrcmlc, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of dcloeren
4.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to my brother for sharing this bottle with me.

Pours pitch black with nothing but a cream colored ring around the edges.

The aroma is very nice and inviting. Rich notes of cocoa, coffee, caramel and vanilla.

The taste is dominated by coffee and cocoa... almost reminds me of dark chocolate covered coffee beans. Caramel and roasted/charred are present in the middle with vanilla beans rounding of this beer. Very tasty!

Medium to full in body with an appropriate amount of carbonation. Without this level of carbonation it could have taken this from a top notch brew to a sub par one in a hurry.

Overall, this was an excellent treat. Perfect after dinner beer for sure. I'm very happy I got to try this beer and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

dcloeren, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of teleman
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

teleman, Apr 04, 2012
Photo of jasinviso
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

jasinviso, Apr 04, 2012
Photo of funkel81
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

funkel81, Apr 03, 2012
Photo of cspieth
4.75/5  rDev +8.2%

cspieth, Apr 02, 2012
Photo of shleepy
3.6/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Handles in Pleasanton on 1/25/2012.

A: Black, with a creamy, tan-colored head.

S: Very pungent; heavy coffee smell, with roastiness, vanilla, and gingerbread in the mix.

T: Immediate but quickly fading alcohol notes up front, followed by the aforementioned vanilla/gingerbread/roastiness. An interesting balance of flavors. Surprisingly clean finish.

M: Fairly full-bodied, but not as heavy as an imperial stout.

O: Pretty unique for a coffee porter, but maybe just a little too boozy and unsubtle.

shleepy, Apr 01, 2012
Photo of DomingoOrtiz
4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

DomingoOrtiz, Apr 01, 2012
Photo of muskiesman
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

muskiesman, Apr 01, 2012
Photo of vr6corrado
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

vr6corrado, Mar 31, 2012
Photo of xnapshot
4/5  rDev -8.9%

xnapshot, Mar 31, 2012
Photo of Skye1024
4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

Skye1024, Mar 31, 2012
Victory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial Porter from Ballast Point Brewing Company
98 out of 100 based on 4,094 ratings.