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

Victory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial PorterVictory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

3,317 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3317
Reviews: 904
rAvg: 4.39
pDev: 8.88%


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
Ratings: 3,317 | Reviews: 904 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of SpeedwayJim
SpeedwayJim

New York

4.54/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

22oz. bottle into a Cigar City snifter. Shared with schen9303.

Pours a 1 finger dark mocha head with moderate retention. Beer is opaque and pitch black. Lacing is thick and webbed but sticks close to the head. Solid.

Nose is roasted malt, coffee beans, chocolate, fudge, and cocoa. Moderately aromatic and real deep.

Opens sweet chocolate, molasses, and espresso. Cocoa powder, dark chocolate and just a slight touch of sweet vanilla lingers in the background. Sweet prunes mixes with more cocoa power, roast and coffee at the end. Sweet finish and aftertaste. Very good.

Full bodied with low carbonation. Smooth and silky in the mouth and goes down slick with just a little bite. Finishes messy with a sticky, lingering aftertaste. Awesome!

The flavor and body are near perfect here and overall this is just a very nicely put together beer. Certainly a must try.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2013 02:37:40 | More by SpeedwayJim
Photo of babaracas
babaracas

Florida

4.26/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a near black, thin light brown colored head, thin ring left and nothing on the glass. Smell: vanilla, espresso, dark chocolate, molasses. Promises the sweet.
Taste: quick vanilla hit upfront, then dark roast, dark chocolate, molasses, earthy hopping, prune and raisin, toasted brown bread. covers all of the bases, almost checks the decadent dessert box but it's far more drinkable. Syrupy start, carb brings it back to creamy. Delicious.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2013 03:33:46 | More by babaracas
Photo of JackieTH
JackieTH

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Deep brown black pour kicking up a creamy mocha colored foam that levels off to a thinnish but persistent cap. Lacing coats the edge of the glass. This smells fantastic. A bold, dark and quality French roasted coffee is the prominent feature, interwoven with subtle vanilla, roasted caramel, toasted grain. Taste..dark roasted coffee. Nice French roast coffee bitterness plays well with roasted and toasted malts, lightly charred toffee and the vanilla. This may be lightly sweet, but the bitterness of the coffee and hop are very dominant. Body is medium, this of course being an impy porter in weight but carrying imperial stout ABV and flavor so one may expect a more weighty body. Finish is a long lingering coffee bitterness with very subtle hints of vanilla and toffee. If you enjoy high quality coffee and delicious beer you must give this a try.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2013 01:57:48 | More by JackieTH
Photo of McStagger
McStagger

California

4.41/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoy by 11/26/13. Whoops! Hope the vanilla hasn't faded too much.

A: Might as well be a stout. Pours out thick and inky. Dark. Dark dark dark. Put up to the light and you can get some small tiny bits of garnet on the edges. Head was half a finger that evaporated. A vigorous swirl brings us a touch more than a finger of dark, espresso creme colored foam. Still fades pretty quickly. Good lacing on the glass.

S: Deep roasted malts. Candied sugar in there. Toasted sugar in there as well. Think of toffee that's been brulee'd. Vanilla is still very present. As is the coffee. Coffee is a rich, full bodied roast. Super dark fruit under there. Dried black cherry, maybe some currant or casis. Back end has a woody/smoky characteristic with just a touch of alcohol heat.

T: Hell's bells. Flavors just explode! Entrance is sweet milk chocolate with big notes of vanilla! This is overtaken by a rush of dark fruit. dark fruit. Figs, dates, more of the dried black cherry. The malt bitterness picks up in the end, hitting you with huge notes of roasted and torched grain. Heat begins to show up in the finish, but it works so well with the vanilla sweetness. Very little coffee in this one. Just getting a tiny bit on the finish.

M: A little north of medium bodied. I understand that this is an Imperial Porter, but for with flavors that go pretty much toe to toe with an RIS, I guess I just expect the body of the beer to behave like an RIS.

O: Dunno why it took me so long to pick one of these up. The ten dollar price tag probably had something to do with it. Still, this one is defintely worth the money. An absolutely stellar beer for the chill winter nights.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2013 09:44:27 | More by McStagger
Photo of mtstatebeer
mtstatebeer

West Virginia

4.69/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22 oz bottle. Pours a pitch black with a frothy brown head, good lacing. Aroma is roasted malts, coffee, vanilla, and chocolate. Flavor is the same with a bit of hoppy bitterness to match. Mouthfeel is full, syrupy and proper carbonation. This is a wonderful beer, my favorite right now.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2013 05:29:43 | More by mtstatebeer
Photo of WheelsPSU
WheelsPSU

New York

4.59/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Brought a bomber for Thanksgiving. It poured a dark syrup color bordering on black. It had a khaki head that did not last very long. The smell was of fresh morning coffee with hints of dark chocolate. Not overwhelming.
The taste followed the smell. The coffee hits first followed by unsweetened chocolate and vanilla on the finish. It's velvety, smooth and delicious. The alcohol is well hidden and not detectable until the beer really started to warm.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2013 01:09:36 | More by WheelsPSU
Photo of maxcoinage
maxcoinage

Illinois

4.83/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Split a Bomber with a buddy, poured into two snifters with a few cm mocha colored head. Color was a dark black

ARoma was dominated by the name of the beer as I was hoping - coffee and vanilla. Some chocolate and booziness were apparent as well.

Taste was fantastic, dominated by roasted malt/coffee, some vanilla sweetness, dark chocolate

Mouthfeel -medium carb, not as big of a body as I was expecting for 10%ABV but still good. creamy and slightly bitter on the finish

Overall - Honestly two of my favorite flavors are coffee and vanilla- so I had high expectations for this beer and it delivered. Great sipper for a winter afternoon. Definitely recommend this and will be seeking out more. Gotta thank my buddy Mike for this, won it in a fantasy football bet.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2013 22:50:50 | More by maxcoinage
Photo of laituegonflable
laituegonflable

Australia

4.3/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Purplish-tinged dark brown hue. Head is ochre, pretty dense but thinned out to a rim. Interesting, and head revives well.

Smells spiky and pungent. Vanilla, cinnamon, plums, mostly. Spice, sweet and a massive amount of coffee roast. No other word, it's intense.

Taste is less intense, but carries on the same notes. Huge vanilla sweetness with caramel drops, a touch of coffee roast, but yeah, creme brulee kind of sweetness as well. Could be off-putting but that roasty bitterness just tacks up the sweetness to make it not just palatable, but drinkable and enjoyable.

Little bit of booze pull, but stands up OK thanks to a sizeable and smooth body.

Everything about this beer made me recoil at first, but with every subsequent sip I fell more and more under its spell. Sweet, desserty, and quite amazingly balanced, with its most intense notes intricately counterbalanced. This is a far, far better beer than I initially gave it credit for.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2013 04:36:16 | More by laituegonflable
Photo of JohnCassillo
JohnCassillo

California

4.44/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bomber poured into pint glass

A: Almost black and completely opaque with zero head whatsoever. This is what a porter should look like.

S: The coffee and vanilla notes are immediate and pungent, with an underlying bit of chocolate as well.

T: Dark chocolate appears at both the front and back end of each sip, taking on different characteristics in each instance. First is sweet, the second almost comes off bitter (in a good way). Vanilla and coffee are top of mind at all times.

M: Warm, crisp and thick. It's got a decent amount of carbonation and ends up quite filling.

O: If you're looking for a quality porter with a boatload of flavor depth, this is your choice. Wouldn't call it a "dessert beer" necessarily, but a much easier drink post-dinner.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2013 05:16:31 | More by JohnCassillo
Photo of ADZA
ADZA

Australia

3.63/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another beer I never thought I'd see locally so glad I was proven wrong and it pours a black coffee short black hue with a creamy two finger head and lacing everywhere,the smell is strong and I mean strong vanilla mixed with strong expresso and also massive hints of milk chocolate,the feel is full bodied with moderate carbonation and has tastes of strong vanilla,strong dark coffee,ripe berries and finished with a milk chocolate bittersweetness and overall it's nice but a little too sweet for sessionability and I feel the vanilla dominates a little too much cheers.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2013 15:36:24 | More by ADZA
Photo of emyers
emyers

Illinois

4.23/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22 oz. bottle poured into a Founders snifter.

Appearance: Pours near black with a 1-finger medium brown head. Leaves a nice lacing down the glass.

Smell: Very multidimensional. Coffee takes the forefront, but strong vanilla and dark chocolate take over at times, only to fade out and be replaced by another aroma, creating a layered bouquet.

Taste: The base beer comes through a lot more here with a very strong roasted malt base. Coffee and dark chocolate build off of this foundation. The vanilla is much more subtle here than in the aroma, but provides added complexity. Caramel malt and some earthy hops come through on the finish along with a nice bitterness and a slight acidity from the coffee.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied, medium carbonation. Hint of acidity from the coffee.

Overall: Great beer. This would be above average even before the addition of the coffee, chocolate, and vanilla, but they really bring it over the top. Excellent.

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2013 04:18:00 | More by emyers
Photo of ChrisMyhre
ChrisMyhre

Massachusetts

4.58/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a stemmed wine glass from the 22 oz. bottle. Enjoy by January 15, 2014.

a: Dark black, not sure if there's variation from batch to batch but I see no brown at all. Solid looking dark tan head, but not tall. Not much lacing.

s: Very vanilla forward, a little coffee, malt, and yeast though too.

t: Much less vanilla taste (I hate vanilla coffee so this is a very good thing to me), nice roasty, somewhat with lots of good coffee flavor .

m: Drinkable, just slightly on the drinkable side(for a 10.0 abv Imperial Stout at least), lower carbonation but still a very full feeling beer..

o: Excellent, the most balanced coffee stout/porter I've had, very subtle vanilla taste with nice scent, which is very rare. I will pick this up anytime I have extra dough lying around, would love to see in 12 oz bottles.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2013 23:07:30 | More by ChrisMyhre
Photo of Duane_Opfer
Duane_Opfer

Virginia

4.7/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

22 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Enjoy by date of 1/15/14. Consumed on 11/20/13.

A - Brown approaching black with a half finger of light brown small bubble head. Head lasted for a while and left well-defined rings around glass as liquid receded. Visually appealing.

S - Cream, vanilla, dark chocolate, and roasted coffee beans. No booziness.

T - Wow. Chocolate covered espresso beans crossed with a damn good cup of coffee with a beautiful vanilla sweetness. Phenomenal. Lasting dark chocolate/vanilla sweetness with a slight hint of dark fruit. Perfectly mellow. Hides ABV, yet warming.

M - Smooth as silk, creamy, and a wonderful tingle in the mouth.

O - I loved this. I will buy it whenever I see it and recommend you do the same.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2013 02:55:08 | More by Duane_Opfer
Photo of IAmAPenguin
IAmAPenguin

California

3.96/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Aroma: distinct coffee bean, chocolate, cocoa powder, vanilla and brownie. Smells fantastic, literally like a chocolate vanilla cake. Appearance: black as night with a really nice lacing against the glass. Taste: sweet coffee, frappucino, cocoa powder, chalky chocolate, faint vanilla and constant cocoa. Overall, really really nice, sweet flavors with impressive complexity.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2013 09:25:38 | More by IAmAPenguin
Photo of pjkelley82
pjkelley82

New York

4.94/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Recieved this as an extra via grze... thanks.. phenomenal pick...

Poured from the bottle into a snifter...

A- poured a dark leather brown color nearly black with a 2 inch brown sugar colored pillowy head... stayed a good amount... left sparce lacing that left quickly...

S- jesus... what a wonerfull coffe aroma.. light vanilla and chocalate with a nice bold smell to it...

T- So rich and bold at first... then what I guess is the vanilla smooths everything out for a moment before a nice roast punch hits you sqare on the back of your throat.. what a great tasting porter... everything is streamlined perfectly and tho at certain points seems exteme it all balances out...

M- Beside Milkstout Nitro on tap this is the creamiest beer ive ever tasted. Full bodied.. not watery not sticky but kinda sticky.. heavy but not too heavy...The Mouthfeel is by far my demise.. best in a bottle I've ever had... very light carbonated but not flat...

O- Yea... I'd say beside a local porter I've had which is dear to my heart.. this is by far the best porter I've had... bottom line.... I can't say anything else...you don't have to like it... but if you don't try this your dumb...

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2013 05:07:21 | More by pjkelley82
Photo of ExaltedNecrosis
ExaltedNecrosis

Texas

4.78/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

22 oz bottle poured into oversized tulip glass.

A - Pours a pitch black with one and a half fingers of dark mocha/chocolate head. This doesn't let any light through.

S - Massive coffee aroma that can be smelled without even putting my nose to the glass. The roasted coffee is followed by vanilla and chocolate.

T - The taste is a coffee lover's heaven. Huge roasted coffee flavor, followed a bit after by sweet vanilla and a bit of chocolate. The roastiness is very pronounced and quite delicious. Every flavor is very bold and full.

M - This is one of the thickest porters I've had. It's pretty much a stout. Full, chewy body with moderate carbonation. The coffee really sticks to the mouth long after taking a sip. It's got a nice chewy and sticky aftertaste.

O - This was everything I hoped it would be and then some. The best porter I've had hands down, and it beats a lot of my favorite stouts. The roasted coffee, bold vanilla, and chocolate complement each other perfectly. Amazing job, Ballast Point.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2013 02:54:25 | More by ExaltedNecrosis
Photo of grze
grze

California

5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is one of the best beers I've ever had. It should be in top10 in my opinion. Super delicious porter. You can taste the vanilla, coffee, but everything is super balanced, does not overpower each other. Alcohol is barely there, it's a great tasting beer and easy to drink for the ABV

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2013 01:10:06 | More by grze
Photo of toolbrew
toolbrew

Illinois

4.6/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a Duvel tulip glass. Bottle enjoy by date of December 2013. Poured deep brown with a thick fluffy brown head. Big nose of vanilla. Coffee aromas after agitation. Sweet taste with good vanilla flavor. Bitter finish. Smooth, creamy mouthfeel. No alcohol burn whatsoever. Overall I really enjoyed this beer and will revisit. Would be a good one to lay down to see how it ages.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2013 03:01:53 | More by toolbrew
Photo of Jas45678
Jas45678

Michigan

4.3/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a nice black with a small mocha head that fades fairly quickly. Smell is vanilla, coffee, mocha and a little carmel. Taste is coffee and vanilla with some mocha and carmel. Nice bitter finish. A little light bodied with medium amount of carbonation. Overall a great porter especially if you like coffee and vanilla.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2013 02:23:48 | More by Jas45678
Photo of Shallow_Gravy
Shallow_Gravy

California

4.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle to BT whiskey snifter

A- Pours opaque black. When held up to light it'd got the slightest hint of cola red color. Nice 1 finger kakhi head sits on top. Some spotty lacing.

S - Good God. Huge coffee, slight vanilla, roasted malt. Can't get over just how much coffee there is. Could use some more vanilla, but that's a small gripe.

T - Starts smooth with vanilla and slightly woody notes, and then the coffee comes in mid-palate. Coffee and vanilla on the finish. Very delicious.

M - Creamy, with enough carbonation to leave the mouth coated. A bit thin, but again a small gripe. Makes it that much more drinkable.

O - Damn fine beer. A coffee beer if I've ever had one. I could drink this all day.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2013 00:03:28 | More by Shallow_Gravy
Photo of polloenfuego
polloenfuego

Ontario (Canada)

4.01/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Froma 22 oz bottle to a pint glass.

A: deep dark brown with a thumb sized root beer head. The head breaks down giving way to thick lacing.

S: vanilla is the premier smell, followed by coffee, roasted malts and some caramel.

T: roast and coffee but the the vanilla taste really comes through here. I found this to be almost a little overpowering.

M: good carbonation and a chewyness that was nice. The finish was a bit bitter however.

O: a good porter, though the vanilla did at times seem too strong. I also found that as this beer moved up in temperature it became a little less flavorful and a little boozier.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2013 02:36:27 | More by polloenfuego
Photo of usechopstix4soup
usechopstix4soup

New York

4.55/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very black body with a thick foamy caramel head.

Smell is really what makes this beer wonderful. Smells of dark roasted coffee, vanilla, and caramel infused together dancing around the top of the brim into your nose. This is something you must try. There are bits and pieces of bread and other carby smells that give it depth.

The taste reminds me of a dark, black coffee with a shot of espresso and vanilla. It is bitter but porter lovers will be instantly drawn.

The porter has a watery body, lighter than most but this isn't something that I particular mind.

Great beer, definite recommend.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2013 18:34:25 | More by usechopstix4soup
Photo of BeerAficionadoMCMXC
BeerAficionadoMCMXC

California

3.75/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- color is dark brown. Tilt of glass reveals some brown but still maintains the dark brown color.
S-100% vanilla, slightly overpowering.
T- I got roast, vanilla, coffee, and a bitter finish. Chocolate is also very present.
M- chewy, thick, dark, stout.
O- imperial porter?! This is a stout.

Serving type: bottle

11-03-2013 06:53:40 | More by BeerAficionadoMCMXC
Photo of joeseppy
joeseppy

Illinois

4.41/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours black as I can get it with a continual amount of mocha frothiness.

Aromas of of dark cocoa, coffee, hops, roasty grain and milk sweetness.

Straight forward in your face-no doubt about it-Hello coffee! May I have some dark cocoa, vanilla bean, piney hop and alcohol put in there please.

Medium to heavy on the mouthfeel with alcohol resonating in the cranium with bitter coffee on the tongue and vanilla ringing on the palate.

Delivers as advertised with no frills or artificial ingredients. Pleasure to have tried and will get better with some time on it. Buyer beware, there is strong black coffee here in the mix. Plain outstanding!

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2013 04:05:04 | More by joeseppy
Photo of beerforpresident
beerforpresident

Texas

4.56/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Revisited this one last night. Rich, of course, but also way more drinkable than I remember. Excellent coffee, chocolate. The vanilla is nice at first, but turns a touch too sweet towards the end.

Been a standby since the first time I had it. Even so, I'm looking forward to trying an even fresher bottle of this when it rolls into town again.

22oz (Enjoy by: 11/07/13) into tumbler

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2013 15:12:39 | More by beerforpresident
Victory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial Porter from Ballast Point Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 3,317 ratings.