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Vanilla Porter - Breckenridge Brewery

Not Rated.
Vanilla PorterVanilla Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,195 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,195
Reviews: 963
rAvg: 3.63
pDev: 15.7%
Wants: 69
Gots: 337 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Breckenridge Brewery visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Mebuzzard on 01-13-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,195 | Reviews: 963 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of VMWhelan
3.18/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint.

Pours a very dark ruby with a great one finger frothy mocha head that unfortunately dissapates, leaving some decent lacing.

Smells of dark fruits and very burnt toasted malts. Some caramel with just a slight hint of vanilla.

Taste is dominately by the roasted malts. Burnt tasting with a bit of caramel, but not as much as in the scent. Most of the vanilla is masked by the overall toastiness and is too similar in character to the caramal flavors. A bit disappointing it that aspect, but overall, not bad.

Mouthfeel is a little light for the style with little carbonation. Dry in the finish.

Drinkability is ok. At only 4.7% ABV, it wouldn't be hard to drink a few of these. However, the dryness gets in the way and the flavor is a little too "burnt." Needs more vanilla.

VMWhelan, Feb 18, 2011
Photo of adamhimself
3.15/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The appearance of this beer is pretty standard, nothing really fancy going on here. A black beer with a crisp white head.

The smell is that of burnt raisins. There is a strong "burned" smell and nothing more.

The taste is very similar to the smell. There is burned caramels and no vanilla taste at all. Its super disappointing. I was hoping for a strong vanilla flavor, but it wasn't there.

The mouthfeel was ok, nothing amazing.

The drinkability isn't bad, but I wouldn't want more than a few. Its really heavy and sits on your gut.

I have had this on tap at the Brewery in Breckenridge and its slightly better there, but not by much. If it had a nice vanilla taste and maybe were an Imperial, then this would be an amazing beer.

adamhimself, Feb 12, 2011
Photo of EgadBananas
2.83/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark brown in color, beige colored finger and a half of head, lacing is splotchy and spotty.

Aroma is slightly sweet, slightly vanilla, but it's an odd vanilla. More like a coke vanilla smell; bubbly and sugary.

Some toasted malts, but there's that coke vanilla taste. It's not awful, just odd. Not the kind of vanilla taste I like.

Feel is smooth, slick, a bit buddly, and more lighter in body.

An average porter with vanilla that just seems out of whack. I wonder how old these bottles are?

EgadBananas, Feb 12, 2011
Photo of nimrod979
2.73/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle pours a dark brown with ruby highlights when held up to the light. Nice fluffy off white head that laces well. Aroma is pretty much roasted malts, smoke, soy sauce and a hint of vanilla. Flavor leans pretty heavy on the vanilla. Slight nutty chocolate flavor on the end but it leaves a weird lingering taste in your mouth. Rather thin but slick mouthfeel. I was excited to try this beer after I kept hearing about and seeing this beer around now. I bought a 12 pack Sampler and this is not a very good start :(

nimrod979, Feb 12, 2011
Photo of OtherShoe2
3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours brown with some ruby hues when held to the light. Not as dark as expected for a porter. But, it has a white soapy head that dissipates to a bubbly skim, and it leaves decent traces of lace down the glass. Nice.

The nose is a little odd. i get the vanilla and some sweetness here, and some light coffee and roasted malt. Wanted a bit more, but ok.

So, the vanilla is all in the nose. Decent balance of sweet cream and some coffee. Dark roasted malt has enough toasty edge to transition well from the sweetness in the beginning. there is a nuttiness as the palate clears, and as I sipped, something in there, just barely, that was herbal or medicinal. Lightly bitter and nutty in finish. Strength of flavor was a bit lacking, but still decent.

Mouthfeel was appropriate and facilitated drinkability. I liked this one, and probably could have a couple, but would not be able to session. Worth a try.

OtherShoe2, Feb 11, 2011
Photo of KidsDoc
3.28/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into snifter

A: dark brown with deep amber hues. initial tan head rose in tiny bubble from the pour then settled to a nearly white rim

S: subdued. vanilla is definitely there, other than that it is very subdued aroma: light caramel, roast malt.

T: sweet, vanilla extract dominates. Roasted malt, subtle chocolate in the middle. The end blends nicely with a very slight hop presence

M: light bodied and quite bubbly. the body overall for a porter was not bad but the carbonation was excessive for me

D: nothing I would turn down but not one I would be sad to never try again. Overall the vanilla is a nice touch but makes this beer very sweet. That combined with the carbonation almost makes this tast like a vanilla coke - I couldn't get that out of my head while drinking this one. lots of belching with this beer - could have done without that

KidsDoc, Feb 08, 2011
Photo of Lauthaha
4.05/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a beer glass.

Appearance: Color is a rich, dark mahogany with plum and crimson undertones; a velvety caramel/tan head leaves heavy lacing as it recedes. This beer looks really, really good.

Smell: Gentle (but firm) sweet malt character provides the base for this beer. The vanilla is a touch understated in the nose, and there's a slight wooden-barrel-aged quality to it (even if it isn't aged)...oak maybe. Very understated, I would have liked to have seen just a touch more here, but it's good, nonetheless.

Taste: I'm trying to grasp just what it is here. The first thought I had was buttered popcorn, or more specifically, caramel corn (though it's not corny in the way of adjuncts...this is a mellow and acceptable corniness). Malt is pretty average (just slightly roasted), vanilla is understated. The thing is, it TASTES really good...but there just isn't a lot of taste there. *shrug* Aftertaste is toasty and pleasant, maybe a little coffee or something in there. I can't give it any less than a 4, but maybe I'm being too generous.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is understated, and the beer changes from a soda-like quality to an almost milky quality as the bubbles fizz. I like it...gives me a chance to enjoy the taste. Rinses fairly clean for a porter.

Drinkability: Lower-than-average ABV and more than a few interesting flavors make this beer very drinkable. It's not my favorite, but I wouldn't shy away from buying it again, should the opportunity present itself.

Lauthaha, Feb 07, 2011
Photo of Boitnott
3.38/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a DFH snifter and it is dark brown with some light visibility through it. The head was little to none and what was left quickly dissipated. Virtually no lacing exists with this one. Other than the color, the appearance is not stellar. The aroma is malty with some vanilla coming though. Somehow there is a hint of alcohol smell which takes away from the overall smell considerably. The nose is of sweet malts, and the vanilla comes out as it lingers. This vanilla continues to the finish and really takes hold of the flavor. Without this vanilla, the beer would be less than average. The vanilla adds a nice balance to that somehow present taste of alcohol. Overall the taste is rather enjoyable in this finish but the rest does not come together. Carbonation is alright, and the body is not too intense.

Boitnott, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of Meik
4.33/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Damn tasty!
The vanilla seems to beam through quite nicely. I am defiantly a fan of porters in general with Great Lakes Edmond Fitzgerald being my favorite.
With that in mind this comes pretty close to that top spot. It obviously tastes different but it is equally good. The amount of vanilla in each bottle is just enough to give it a vanilla flavor without knocking you in the teeth. It has a cleaner feel than other porters and it almost feels like a brown ale at first sip.
None-the-less it is a solid porter with great mouthfeel. I defiantly recommend this one.

Meik, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of radioscooter
2.38/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Bought at Brews Brothers in Pittsburgh. Was looking for an alternate contender for the Southern Tier Creme Brulee, which they were SUPPOSED to have on tap but did not.

Found this screaming out VANILLA at the top of its lungs. Fair enough, let's give it a shot.

Appearance is root beer. Not pitch black, but brown edging to dark red, some minimal frothy head.

Smell is a bit off-putting. Not getting any vanilla. Cheese - yes.

Taste - okay there it is. Wow. Vanilla does not go well with bitter. It needs to be sweetened a bit.

Very flat taste that is so dry it evaporates fro the tongue almost immediately and chalks up. What am I tasting? Vanilla, (the bitter extract version, not a milkshake version) some coffee, and those roasty toasty malt tastes. But very dry. Very bitter. Fair enough - it's a porter, not a cream stout. But still...

Not a good drinker for me.

radioscooter, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of zhanson88
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Vanilla Porter pours a clear light brown with a bunch of ruby showing when held up to light. About a finger of off-white head forms. Retention is decent, and lacing is below average.

Smell: Probably the most prevalent scent is vanilla, which is a bit disappointing as I'd really like the malts to shine. I do get some very lightly roasted malts and floral hops as well on a lesser note.

Taste: Very similar to the smell. Quite a bit of vanilla, light roasted malt character with some florals on the back end. Not very rich or malt-heavy, but still decent.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: This beer is just a bit over light bodied with a fair amount of carbonation. It does end up drinking pretty smoothly, especially after it warms up a bit. I'd call this beer pretty drinkable, especially since I really enjoy some nice vanilla character. There really isn't much behind it but still, I've had much worse.

zhanson88, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of jale
3.08/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a clear brown with a dime of a tan head.

S: A little roasted malt a just a hint of vanilla.

T: Some roasted malt. Slightly sweet and tiny amount of vanilla. Slight sour finish

M: Moderate carbonation. Thin body for me.

D; One and done for me.

jale, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of Bslied
4.53/5  rDev +24.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I was very impressed with this offering from Breckenridge Brewery. This being my first foray into any of there beers I was, per usual, a little skeptical. The beer poured a dark brown with a reasonable head. Initial aroma was of slight vanilla. After the first taste I was reeled in by the accessibility of this beer. I had expected a wallop of over the top vanilla taste, but what I got was so much more. The roasted flavor of the darkened malt came first followed by an ever so subtle wave of vanilla. I find that brewers sometimes miss the mark with flavored beers because they either don't include enough of the signature flavor, or they overpower you with it. This beer found a nice balance for both. My only regret is that they weren't able to capture a slightly higher abv. I think that would have added an additional characteristic to a very good beer.

Bslied, Feb 01, 2011
Photo of HosP
3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up somewhere along the way in a pick six pack.

A - Pours nice black with no light passing through. Light brown head on top that leaves lace along the glass.

S - Nice vanilla aroma. Sweet milk chocolate hints mixed in too.

T - Nice sweet stout taste. Vanilla doesn't overpower any of the other flavors. Bittering chocolate towards the end. Nothing really pops out though.

M - Medium body with moderate carbonation. Slightly dry.

D - Could drink a couple of these with the lower abv to it. Nothing extraordinary, but a good drink. Good drink on a cold winter night.

HosP, Jan 31, 2011
Photo of SteveS1
3.03/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Look: Opaque/brown with a little ruby/caramel light showing through at the edges. Light tan head with little retention. Decent lacing.

Smell: Standard chocolate malts, hint of vanilla icing, very sweet, bubble gum

Taste: A bit bitter on the tip of the tongue, roasted malts and bubble gum on the palate, clean bitter coffee flavor going down. A touch of roasted malt aftertaste, but nothing overpowering. Average sweetness.

Feel: A little thin and light. Moderate carbonation.

Drink: Average, an easy drink, but not something you'll be tempted to gulp down.

SteveS1, Jan 30, 2011
Photo of TheDeuce
2.6/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Breckenridge Vanilla Porter, on tap at Bridgewater Pub in 30th St Station

Appearance-a thick brown color that is thick and hard to see through, the tan head rises and dissapears quickly.

Smell-faint hints of vanilla, maybe some hop and alcohol, overall not that aromatic

Taste/Mouthfeel-thin and watery, light to medium mouthfeel, vanilla upfront, taste more of a vanilla syrup style than actual vanilla. This flavor dominates, alcohol is very hidden, a touch of malt on the way down, decently smooth.

Drinkability-not that much a fan of the flavor, alcohol was hidden well, not alcoholic.

Overall-disappointing as I was really excited to try this on the menu, sad that it didn't quite live up to the hype. Try it for something different but don't expect too much.

TheDeuce, Jan 30, 2011
Photo of InebriatedJoker
3.9/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12 oz bottle - No best by date visible.

Poured into Duvel Tulip -deep dark brown w/ one finger head that dissipated into a thin lacing,medium carbonation .

Smell - mild fruit hints with slight Vanilla & coffee.

Taste - burnt coffee hints upfront ,roasted malts maybe just a hint of vanilla,some fruit notes as well.

Drinkability - As this warms more distinguished flavors start to appear ,slight chocolates with toffees and light Vanilla, very drinkable and will seek out more in the future.

InebriatedJoker, Jan 29, 2011
Photo of jmvecchio1
3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours with a finger high head of off-white head. The color is dark brown with hints of deep burgundy when held up to light. The head quickly dissipates, but leaves a nice amount of lace clinging to the glass. The aroma is light, but I get hints of bready yeast, chocolate, and light vanilla. The drink is enjoyable - you get chocolate notes along with vanilla on the swallow. The beer is very light in mouthfeel and you get a slight initial bite from the carbonation. Overall, it's a beer that I disliked the first time I had it (thought it was too thin in flavor), but I enjoyed it more when I had it again a few weeks later. Probably a one and done beer though.

jmvecchio1, Jan 28, 2011
Photo of jds1469
1.33/5  rDev -63.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Awful all around for real. The First sip was just ok at best. No vanilla taste at all. Smell is like your breath after a night of heavy drinking. Poor idea with poor execution.

If you find this. Leave it sit where you found it. Pick up something else.

jds1469, Jan 27, 2011
Photo of smakawhat
3.63/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from the bottle.

A big four finger head of off white cream consistency, some snap in the bubbles. Fairly good retention on the head for this beer. Body is a little disturbing but not awful. A cloudy brown when finished but pours with a good solid chestnut out of the bottle. Some sticky ring lacing. Ok...

Bouquet... something is off. Weakened vanilla I'll give it that, but where is malt, coffee, roast anything? talk to me here... It's a very odd smell also, like watered down vanilla extract barely a hint of some chew bread. Ok they did manage some vanilla but it is weak and the rest on the nose is really missing hardly remarkable so far. It's as if the vanilla does not match on the nose with malt or the other ingredients that should go with this beer. It's a strange mix on the nose and it seems to just not meld well.

Taste... ok this is much better. Mild weakened root beer quality vanilla and bean feel. Wet though, but it has a nice simple supermarket simple bread chew. Has a soda characteristic though which seems real strange for a porter. Small mouthfeel no carbonation, and vanilla creeps up after a swallow for a short time.

Next to nothing for abv and it shows. This is like drinking soda beer or something, but it's a piece of cake. Might even make a simple easy weakened dessert beer for people with training wheels. But it's easily likeable to drink so I'll rate it good on those points, and not hard at all, a very sessionable drinking beer which some might find kind of fun.

smakawhat, Jan 27, 2011
Photo of rrski198
3.33/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Small off white head with little to no lacing. Dark black in the middle with crimson color around the edges of the glass. I tend to like my porters a little darker.

S: Heavy biscuit aroma. A little spicy in the back of the nose. Don't smell the vanilla at all. Would be nice to get a good whiff before the sip.

T: This beer is almost spiced like a winter warmer. The vanilla is barely there. It is more of a creamy sweatness. I don't dislike the flavor, just expected something different.

M: Good carbonation level. This beer has to have a higher level of carbonation because it is really lacking in the body.

D: I could have quite a few of these. I tend to like porters with a little more body, however, for the style, its not bad. I probably wouldn't purchase again, not because I don't like it, because there are many better porters out there.

rrski198, Jan 20, 2011
Photo of 2xHops
2.8/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

There's not much carbonation, and there were barely any head developing while I poured into a pint glass. The color is the usual what you would expect out of a porter.

Taste - I can taste the vanilla ever so slightly, but it's not distinctive enough. Other than that, the flavors seemed so bland to me.

M - The porter felt a bit flat and thin in my mouth. I would have liked it to have slightly more thick feel to it. Carbonation's almost nonexistent.

Drinkability - I wouldn't drink this on a regular basis as there are some other porters that are more worthy of your time. It's just too boring as a porter. For me, I'd have more fun drinking porters from breweries such as Tyranena.

2xHops, Jan 20, 2011
Photo of djmitche
2.9/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: not much carbonation, and redder that I expect from a porter

Smell: Vanilla - not like the bean, but like sniffing a bottle of extract. I can't smell anything else.

Taste: Vanilla, bitter chocolate. No hops in evidence.

Drinkability: for all that, the beer manages not to be cloying. I had it with tacos, and found that it paired quite well with the guacamole. I probably wouldn't look for this beer, but I finished it...

djmitche, Jan 17, 2011
Photo of stephadelphia
3.48/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- A nice, reddish dark brown. Can still see through it a bit. A tan head foamed to about an inch after the initial pour, and half of that remained on top of the glass for the remainder.

S- Definitely can smell the vanilla, slight hints of malt and brown sugar.

T- Vanilla taste up front, roasted malt taste finish. The vanilla is not overpowering, and I wouldn't consider this to be too sweet of a brew. Still, sweeter than your traditional porter (obviously).

M- A nice, light carbonation and surprisingly smooth. I expected it to be a little thicker, but it was not as water as I would have expected from its appearance. Really do wish it was a bit creamier.

D- Pleasant enough beer with an interesting taste. I like the way it hits my palate. Overall, not bad. Could see sitting and sipping on this beer, but would eventually want to switch to something a little thicker.

stephadelphia, Jan 16, 2011
Photo of DrDemento456
3.9/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I have had this before and even had a case but never reviewed it. Picked up a single for 2.25.

A - Nice jet black in color with a half inch of mocha colored head.

S - Has pretty sweet vanilla in the nose with mild chocolate and a pretty solid roasted character.

T - Pretty enjoyable but could use more bitter roasted coffee aspect. The vanilla is not overpowering, kind of sweet, but gets kind of cloying after half the glass.

M - Medium bodied but it went down pretty quick.

D - As far as vanilla goes this one was pretty good. Kind of over the top but nicely done even better than ST Creme Brulee. The low ABV may suggest multiple glasses but its really kind of a one a sitting beer. Pretty good!

DrDemento456, Jan 16, 2011
Vanilla Porter from Breckenridge Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 3,195 ratings.