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Vanilla Porter - Breckenridge Brewery

Not Rated.
Vanilla PorterVanilla Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,042 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,042
Hads: 3,947
Avg: 3.55
pDev: 31.27%
Wants: 132
Gots: 965 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Breckenridge Brewery
Colorado, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Porter | 5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Mebuzzard on 01-13-2006

Deep in the jungles of Papua New Guinea and Madagascar grows the perfect ingredient for an extraordinary Porter brewed in Colorado. Breckenridge Brewery’s Vanilla Porter. An ale that has all the chocolate and roasted nut flavor of a classic Porter, with an enigmatic surprise thrown in for good measure.
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Reviews: 1,042 | Hads: 3,947
Photo of KevChiTown
3.34/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

If it was just a standard Porter it would be boring and forgettable. The vanilla is very nice, smooth not over powering at all. Exactly enough so I can drink this six pack and not be pissed that I bought it.

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Photo of JordanHageman
3.93/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

I've had a few vanilla porters and they've been decent but for some reason this one has a wonderful flavor and feel. The smell is pretty generic but as soon as you get taste it you get wonderful notes of an oat vanilla fullness that you'd not expect. It feels fantastic too. Silky and smooth.

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Photo of Foyle
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: pours a decent tan head that falls fairly fast with some mild lacing. Color is a deep reddish brown.
Aroma: vanilla, chocolate, and roasted malts, with floral and herbal hops.
Mouthfeel: medium to heavy bodied with a creamy consistency.
Flavor: vanilla is quite dominate somewhat balanced with cocoa and dark roasted malt flavors. A background of bittering hops in the finish.
Overall: very good but not outstanding.

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Photo of Ramiro235
4.16/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A sweet and light porter with high drinkability. The initial aftertaste is very strongly of vanilla but it doesn't become an issue unless multiple are drank in a short time frame. Has a nice light and nutty aroma and feels creamy going down. Very drinkable..

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Photo of Auraan
4/5  rDev +12.7%

Poured a deep brown body with red highlights when held to light and a thin ring of head. A decent looking porter, but it could use better head formation. Scents of coffee with cream, bittersweet milk chocolate, moderate levels of roast malt, medium-high notes of vanilla and light caramel and bready malt. Overall impression of aroma is of a wonderful porter base with a very pleasant addition of vanilla. True to style, pleasant and enticing, very well done. Flavor begins lightly sweet with notes of sweetened coffee with cream, milk chocolate, vanilla, light caramel and a light roast malt and black coffee bitterness keeping it balanced. Middle is lightly sweet still with notes of vanilla, coffee with cream, light caramel and bready malt. Finish is medium-dry with notes of dark coffee with cream, vanilla, roast malt, dark chocolate and a very light touch of caramel very far in the background. Aftertaste is roast malt, black coffee and vanilla. Overall impression of flavor is of a very good porter base enhanced by the addition of vanilla. Roasty, rich and full of flavor. Very nice. Mouthfeel is light bodied with high carbonation and a smooth feel with a light prickle. Overall impression of mouthfeel is of a very good porter, true to form and pleasing to drink. Overall this is an excellent porter. The vanilla aids the aroma and flavor of a solid base beer and makes this one a good one. Very highly recommended.

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Photo of superspak
3.78/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, best before 7/6/2014. Pours crystal clear deep reddish brown color with a 1 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a light amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of chocolate, cocoa, caramel, vanilla, toasted bread, light coffee, cream, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance of dark/bready malt and vanilla notes; with solid strength. Taste of chocolate, cocoa, caramel, vanilla, toasted bread, light coffee, cream, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Light herbal bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of chocolate, cocoa, caramel, vanilla, toasted bread, and herbal/toasted earthiness on the finish for a short bit. Very nice balance and robustness of dark/bready malts and vanilla flavors; with a good malt/bitterness balance and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth and fairly creamy/bready mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with zero warming present after the finish as expected of 4.7%. Overall this is a very good vanilla porter. All around good robustness and balance of dark/bready malt and vanilla flavors; and very smooth to drink. A nicely enjoyable offering.

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Photo of hophugger
3.58/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Deep dark brown, almost close to black. Thin head that leaves quickly until just a thin layer left. Decent lacing. Aroma is malty with just a hint of vanilla, not as much vanilla as I expected. But of course I do not see any bottling date or drink by date. This beer I am sure is alittle older, as I have seen it on the shelf for some time. Taste is nice and smooth with a nice blast of vanilla and a Three Musketeers Like taste, interesting. Very drinkable and smooth, light bitterness, roasted malts and lot of sweetness upfront. Feels good going down, coats the tonque and is a little thick on the palate. Overall, a well balanced, lighter porter.

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Photo of Eric_Edwardson
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Picked up a 6 pack of this stuff on sale at a local liquor store. Thought I would try it out after a coworker of mine recommended it to me. Deep Brown in color this porter ale offers slight notes of chocolate and roasted nut all that you would expect from a porter. I personally love anything vanilla, I would choose plain vanilla ice cream over any ice cream flavor. That being said I wasn't able to pick up a ton of vanilla until about a minute after taking my first sip, which was a little disappointing. I would like to see more forward notes of vanilla, but that might just be the vanilla lover in me. Over all it's a good beer, just left me wanting more vanilla notes.

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Photo of HamdenHector
4/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: dark brown, but clear; mahogany around the edges; 1 finger light brown head that receded slowly to a thin collar; nice lacing;

S: dark chocolate is most prevalent, but coffee is there as well as vanilla;

T: follows the nose initially; coffee fades by mid-palate; finish is mildly bitter with all chocolate and vanilla;

M: medium bodied; moderate carbonation;

O: the vanilla sets this one apart from other porters; I prefer a straight up porter, but keep coming back to this from time to time;

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Photo of UKBeerman
4.5/5  rDev +26.8%

One of my favorite out of the bottle brews. I have not seen it on tap in the Cincinnati area. Has a good mouthfeel with a rich head to tends to stay when poured. A pleasant malty rich taste with obviously strong Vanilla notes. Aroma matches the Vanilla taste....rich and malty.

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Photo of JustinAniello
4.03/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nearly pitch black with one finger of creamy head and sticky lacing. Slowly subsides to a decent cap and lacing.

S - Heavy coffee and roasted malt with a hint of vanilla. The aroma turns to chocolate as it warms up.

T - Sweet vanilla and burnt toffee at first turning to a lightly bitter coffee on the swallow. Bitterness continues through the aftertaste with the mildest amount of vanilla. Gains a bit of chocolate flavor as it warms up. Really tastes like cream soda mixed with a porter, in a good way.

M - Medium body and carbonation.

O - I was not expecting a cream soda flavored beer, but was happy with what I drank. Nice depth to both the aroma and flavor, changing as the beer warmed. Heavier body would be nice, but no real complaints.

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Photo of kim_thayil
4/5  rDev +12.7%

i had this for the first time last year and remember really liking it. i went and grabbed a 6 pack recently and am enjoying one right now. it really really smells like vanilla. it goes down a little bit like soda, but not in a bad way. i guess i just mean the carbonation is soda-like. it's very easy to drink.

it's not some kind of earth shattering revelation of a beer but it is very enjoyable and i think it's well done for what it is supposed to be.

i will continue buying this.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
4.02/5  rDev +13.2%

Singles cooler at Hy Vee Wine and Spirits. Not outdated or anything.

Appearance (4) : Like a mesh screen, the bubbles seem to create a tight/loose pattern in the head. There's some large bubbles in the head too. It's about a 3 finger beige head, leaving little webs of lacing as it recedes. The body is coffee colored, an oaky brown-to-black, with 90% opacity. Cute.

Aroma (3.75) : Woody. Leafy. Faint char from a camp fire you can't see in the distance. Some coffee bean. The faintest hint of vanilla extract but you wouldn't know it was vanilla unless you read the bottle. A little bit of black licorice, too. Bouquet is medium strength.

Taste (4.25) : It's got a rich roasted flavor with a prominent zing on the tip of the tongue. Some dark roast coffee bean in the middle. Lightly bitter/sour, this seems to be trademark of most porters. The real punch comes out when you go in for the swallow. Tides of rich vanilla creaminess come in mixed with unmistakeable porter flavor. The finish is superb. After it's over you want more.

Mouthfeel (3.75) : Zingy upfront, creamy towards the back. Medium bodied. Finishes slightly tarry and semi-dry.

Overall (4.02) : This is not a bad beer, especially when you consider the beautiful vanilla finish. The up front taste could be improved, but the finish is dead nuts beautiful. I like this beer and would have another.

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Photo of Josh012012
3.23/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Nothing really offensive about this porter but nothin really great either.

A. Looks like Coca-Cola. Aggressive pour yeilds Generous tan head that fades very quickly.

S. Vanilla, toasty, hard water

T same as nose

F medium carb, watery

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Photo of barczar
3.53/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Not a huge vanilla fan, and this is just too overwhelming for me. I think I'd prefer the base beer without the vanilla additions and some coffee or chocolate.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.73/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Black in color and yet still barely penetrable to light. A fingernail of khaki colored foam is on top. Light Brussels lacing. Aroma is comprised of dark malt and coffee. When I taste it I initially get dark malt and then a rush of vanilla sweetness quickly dials it the other direction. The mouth is slightly oily and viscuous.

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Photo of dcscientist
4.3/5  rDev +21.1%

Now here's a good porter. The vanilla flavor adds a nice smoothness and mild taste to this beer, and as a result it's not one of the smokier ones out there for those that prefer that taste. This is a great dessert beer and one of my preferred porters.

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Photo of illpass78
4/5  rDev +12.7%

12 oz. bottle poured into a Libby stout glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown with some ruby notes. Not the darkest porter. Minimal lacing and head. Carbonation somewhat heavy.

Aroma: The vanilla is there in noticeable amounts, but it's not overpowering. Dark chocolate, coffee beans and roasted malt are also present.

Taste: This beer has a pleasant, mellow taste that is somewhat similar to black French vanilla coffee. There's some nice roasty notes as well, along with a detectable chocolate accent. Good stuff.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth. Dense, but not thick. Not as light as the light-ish color (for the style) would suggest.

Overall: This is a very nice porter that dark beer drinkers will enjoy. Works best as a dessert beer, I think, because of the vanilla and chocolate notes, though it isn't overwhelmingly sweet. A good find for any fan of domestic porters.

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Photo of philbe311
3.9/5  rDev +9.9%

Sleek dark brown color with a slight creamy light khaki colored froth... A terrific mix of vanilla, coffee and roasted malt dominate the aroma... The vanilla dominates the palate but it never comes close to approaching cloying... Medium bodied... Goes down smoothly... A very nice easy drinking well rounded brew...

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Photo of whistlepig
3.5/5  rDev -1.4%

Sweet, creamy head. Vanilla flavor is present and the main focus, but not overwhelming. Could benefit from more carbonation, but that might be my personal taste and not a reflection of the porter style.

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Photo of REGreenBTRB
3.43/5  rDev -3.4%

A: 3.25 - Pours a very thin head that immediatley dissipates. Dark with an amber tint, leaves no lacing.

S: 3.25 - You pick up on the vanilla, though it is not as strong as I was expecting. Roasted malt.

T: 3.75 - Tasty beer! Strong taste of roasted malt and vanilla. The vanilla lingers for awhile after. Also a little bit of dark fruit.

M: 3.5 - Thin with low carbonation. Very drinkable.

O: 3.43 - Overall a nice porter, though not my favorite.

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Photo of TheCondor
3.25/5  rDev -8.5%

Side poured with standard vigor from the bottle into the Deschutes goblet.

Appearance - Pours just like you would expect a nice porter to pour. Dark brown to black in color, one finger head that dissipates relatively quickly (within 1/4 of the drink) and leaves little lacing.

Smell - You can smell the vanilla along with traditional porter scents: malts, a bit of chocolate, and some roastiness. Smell is relatively subdued.

Taste - This is where the brew really starts to lose me. Has a decent vanilla flavor at the front of the drink, with the rest of the flavors kicking in towards the finish. Roasted malts, a bit of chocolate.

Mouthfeel - Disappointing. Watery, which is what I do not want out of a porter. Kind of a funny aftertaste as well, but the thin character of the beer is certainly a big downfall.

Overall - The presentation is probably the best part, but thats pretty hard to screw up, especially with a porter. From there, the brew goes steadily downhill, culminating in what tastes like what would be a decent porter but is so watery it ruins it.

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Photo of Vivelepositif
4.25/5  rDev +19.7%

Purchased in bottle. Pours a 1/4" light tan head. Dark amber brown body, extremely smooth. Despite being a porter tastes light, but still hoppy. On first sip, I didn't taste anything reminiscent of vanilla, then it got stronger about 1/5 down the glass which stays consistent from there. Definitely tastes of vanilla bean- pure, somewhat sweet, with a sense of woody spice. Great beer for pairing with desserts.

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Photo of seedyone
4.37/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Nov 2014 - Rattle n Hum, on tap. Seems vanilla is farther back but still a worthy brew.

2013 At Rattle N Hum Caught this on the cusp of the season. Glad to see it. This is a fine brew. Balanced & polite. Not much is given away under the nose but the coffee, chocolate & of course the vanilla, jump out on the tongue. Subterfuge at it's most hospitable. 74F outside & it still has relevance. Go you Breckenridge.

2013 Rattle n Hum, NYC. On tap. Second try reveals serious vanilla followed by a nicely balanced taste & mouth feel. Well crafted. Demands a second helping & at a friendly 4.7 ABV, let's do it.

01/10/12 At Rattle N Hum, NYC. Nice. Not too sweet. Medium body. Not the winter warmer I expect from a porter, but worth a try.

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Photo of JLSIV
2.92/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Poured into a 16 oz pint glass, head dissipated rather rapidly, never got to more than 1 finger, some lacing, Nice deep chocolate brown color,

Some background aromas of baked bread, not as pronounced vanilla as advertised, some chocolate backgrounds

Good initial chocolate flavors, some spiciness a little bitter (dark chocolate) at the back of my tongue, pleasant though, just nothing high end that made me want more. Vanilla was not pronounced at all, which is unusual since that is a flavor that is usually associated with porters to me

Started dry finished dry, nothing exciting to me

Overall, I really like Porters, and want to see this type on the market, but this one just hit me as average.

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Vanilla Porter from Breckenridge Brewery
81 out of 100 based on 1,042 ratings.