Imperial Tanilla Porter - Knee Deep Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Imperial Tanilla PorterImperial Tanilla Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

156 Ratings
THE BROS
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Ratings: 156
Reviews: 43
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 11.78%
Wants: 15
Gots: 24 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Knee Deep Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: 51mmz0rz on 07-25-2012

A 10 % ABV version of Tanilla. Of course we added more hop bitterness to balance the chocolate, expresso and vanilla malt sweetness. Drink at your own risk. This is a big beer, but drinks way too easy.

48 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 156 | Reviews: 43
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.55/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled shared on the party bus to San Diego, CA.

Pours an almost opaque super dark brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, and vanilla. Taste is much the same with a high amount of roasty bitterness on the palate after each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is pretty drinkable but nothing all that special for the style.

Photo of metter98
3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is near black in color and has only traces of red near the edge of the glass when it is held up to a bright light. It poured with a quarter finger high tan head that died down a bit and eft lots of wispy lacing on the glass and a collar around the edge of the edge the glass.
S: There are moderate aromas of chocolate and vanilla beans in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell except that it also has some notes of espresso beans.
M: It feels a bit shy of medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I thought that this porter had a nice balance between the flavors of chocolate, espresso, and vanilla beans.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.96/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

With less char with which to contend, backing off of an imperial stout recipe works masterfully as the taste of vanilla and chocolate are better showcased in this big and experimental porter.

And with the porter influence taking hold, the massive beer pours with a murky mocha color, looking as much of hot cocoa as it does of porter. As a light cream-colored head slowly builds, its retention is cut short by the chocolate and vanilla oils, leaving also little chance for any meaningful lace.

High vanilla and chocolate aromas come forth immediately. With the backdrop of lightly scorched toffee, heavy toast and dark-roast coffee, the ale carries a lot of supporting nutty and woodish scents without the risk of char or roast.

Its lavish taste wraps around the tongue with milkshake-like sweetnesses. Its charged flavor of heavy whipping cream, vanilla bean and marshmallow seduces the early palate with ease; then slowly developing into chocolate, toast, "Nutella-type" nuttiness, and hearty toffee. As a woody bitterness grows in finish, it blends into the milk chocolate flavor well.

Its rich and silky body once again evokes the sense of milkshake as its deeply woven carbonation subtly escapes its sweetness. Its slow procession across the palate goes from full-bodied to malty-dry very patiently, concluding with a long and vanilla-driven aftertaste.

Imperial Tanilla's character isn't that of depth, complexity or surprise. It sells its vanilla and chocolate well even though it leaves me wanting something more in complement.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.03/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark hue of black with ruby brown highlights, light mocha tan head forms nice intricate lacing. Aromatics offer up dark dessert chocolate notes, roasted iced coffee notes, nutty edge that seems like it would all go well in some oatmeal. Flavors roasted malts, dark chocolate drizzled on some, dark robust coffee notes. Burnt acrid bitter edge on the finish from the dark malts, balanced flowing creaminess works to ease that dark malt robustness. Mouthfeel is creamy texture heaven on the palate, completely hidden alcohol I can't believe this stuff is rolling in at 10% abv...undetectable. Finishes smooth on the palate, nice drinking imperial porter absolutely smooth and delicious pairs great with most darker wrapped cigars out there.

Photo of kojevergas
3.6/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a New Belgium stem-goblet in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are fairly high; this brewery is growing on me. 10% ABV confirmed. 48 IBU. Cost was $7.49.

Served straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm considerably over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a half finger khaki colour head of nice thickness, decent cream, and mundane retention (~25 seconds). Body colour is a solid nontransparent black. No yeast particles are visible. Opaque. No bubble show.

Sm: Vanilla, roast, coffee, and cacao. An average strength aroma. Dark malts.

T: Vanilla, dark malts, cacao, chocolate, some roast, and caramel. Well balanced and built, if a bit simple for the style. No alcohol or yeast comes through. The vanilla should be stronger; Victory at Sea this is not. Complex and enjoyable.

Mf: Smooth, wet, nicely thick, and well carbonated. Good thickness. Suits the flavours generally well.

Dr: Quite drinkable. Hides its high ABV quite well. I really like it. A good brew from Knee Deep. I'd definitely try this on-draught. Not as good as other beers in the style, but a solid effort.

Pairs well with spicy food - especially habanero salsa and nachos.

B

Photo of Zorro
3.46/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Clear brown colored beer with a small brown colored head. Near light proof.

Scents of Vanilla, Chocolate, Char and smoke. Little bit of burned toast aroma and that is it for the scent.

Starts out bitter and a little smoky. Chocolate and char flavors and a very subtle vanilla flavor. Taste of coffee and that is it not any subtle flavors to this one.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall an acceptable beer but not a great one, worth a try if you see it in the store.

Photo of bluejacket74
4.24/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22 ounce bottle, bottled on date of 02/05/14. Served in a snifter, the beer pours dark brown/black with an inch tan head. Head retention and lacing are both good. Aroma is very nice, the brew smells like vanilla, roasted malt, chocolate, and some coffee. Not surprisingly, the taste is similar to the aroma. It tastes like roasted and burnt/charred malt, bittersweet chocolate, vanilla, coffee, and some molasses. Nice mix of both bitter and sweet flavors. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's creamy and has a moderate amount of carbonation. 10% ABV is well hidden. I think this is a good brew, I wouldn't mind picking up another bottle. $6.99 a bomber.

Photo of Brenden
3.86/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Almost black, this pretty big-looking beer grows a light brown head to a solid full finger in height. Good retention is displayed, and the head that remains the whole time leaves sticky lacing in abundant patching.
Hops are actually pretty big in here, coming out in a sort of leafy and herbal way right at the front. Otherwise it's quite roasty.
With the same initial roastiness as there is in the aroma, it's the main note until it's sat for a moment. Left to warm, a bit of char backs off and lets some sweet flavors come out. Vanilla is sort of an afterthought, very much an extract note just into the finish. Coffee is a constant note all the way through.
A creamy feel is all the way through every sip, and crispness is there also. A slightly metallic touch lends itself to the feel as much as any other aspect. It's very slightly drying in the finish as leafy hops continue to linger.

Photo of dar482
4.22/5  rDev +10.5%

The beer has a rich smooth mouthfeel. Not viscous, but quite competent for the ABV. There's a lot of chocolate, almost like a chocolate cake. A good amount of espresso bitterness as the beer smooth out with a gentle amount of vanilla. Vanilla mostly shines on the back end. A very drinkable beer as the hops balance the beer on the finish.

A very good imperial porter that is deserving of a good rating.

Photo of jmdrpi
3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22 oz bottle, dated 01/11/14 - so more than a year old

black, with decent off-white head. not much lacing. nice big vanilla aroma. the taste is definitely dominated by vanilla and maybe a little coffee flavor - but not overly sweet. medium to thick body, good mouthfeel, smooth.

Photo of FosterJM
4.03/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1515th Review on BA
Bottle to Goblet
22oz

No bottle date
Purchased at El Cerrito Liquor

App- Its more of a milk chocolate brown with a deep brown almost black center. Its got some red tinges behind it and has a good 1-1/2 finger head with some pretty great cling. On the 2nd pour its more of a pond layer. 1st pour had more dotted cling and stick.

Smell- It had all the requisite porter notes. Except unlike the base version this one did have the vanilla like it advertised. It was still a bit thin on aromatics Wanted it to pop like BCBVS or a good wheatwine with vanilla but didnt. Way above average but for an Imperial Vanilla was just not up to standards. Kinda there with a flat cola nose.

Taste- Okay so this was better than the base version which was more balanced on the chords of chocolate malts and vanille. This was still light on the Vanilla with a small porter flavor. Roasty, char, malty and what I would say is cola, quad note. It's good, but could be better. Much like I said about the base version. This needs to be a BA version I think for the vanilla to really shine.

Mouth- A lighter medium body with a bit of a lighter bubbly carbonation. More of a cherry soda like vanilla combo. A semi chocolate and vanilla combo. Needs more vanilla. Yes damnit I said it. More vanilla even on a imperial vanilla porter. Dont judge me!

Drink- It was still very tasty and by tasty I mean the balance between the bubbles and vanilla was there but still wanted more smooth vanilla balance. I was hoping imperial version is better and more vanilla but it was better and still needed more vanilla.

Photo of scottfrie
4.12/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into Duvel tulip.

A: Pours a deep coffee brown, near black, with a finger of dense mocha colored foam. Head showed great retention and a thick film lasted quite a while. Thick lace.
S: Huge notes of vanilla extract, vanilla ice-cream, and coffee with lighter hints of chocolate. This smells like mocha-vanilla ice-cream. Much more vanilla than the non-imperial version.
T: Chocolate and vanilla are strong, with roasted coffee and toasted nuts bringing up the finish. I get a hint of caramel and raisins as well. The aftertaste
M: Full body, thick mouthfeel, smooth, even carbonation. Thankfully not frothy like the original. Alcohol is slightly noticeable, but this drinks very well for 10%.
O: Much better than the original. Good vanilla, coffee, and chocolate flavors and they mix well together. Not super complicated, but a very solid porter.

Photo of mhaugo
3.79/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pint, 6 ounce bottle. Decanted into a snifter.
Appearance: As black as my soul. Light beige lacing that sticks to the edge of the glass.
Smell: Heavy molasses. Honestly… that’s about it. Thick, syrupy molasses.
Taste: Roasty with a touch of vanilla that clings to the tongue. Maybe a touch of licorice. Very clean with straightforward flavors. Not excessively complex.
Mouthfeel: Heavy and sweet, with low carbonation.
Overall: Very nice. Well balanced with just the right amount of vanilla. Dangerously easy to drink for a 10% ABV beer. The rough edges round out with a bit of warming. Let it get close to room temperature before enjoying. Great for a cool day.

Photo of FLima
3.87/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Deepest black color with a thick beige head with good retention.
Nice aroma with notes of vanilla, cocoa, molasses and coffee.
Delicious flavor with notes of vanilla, licorice, coffee, cocoa, grapefruit, plums, molasses, mild tobacco and earthy hops. Quite dry aftertaste with its residual notes.
Light bordering medium body with mild carbonation.
Extremely pleasant Imperial Porter with great malt complexity, lots of vanilla and balanced with earthy hops.

Photo of Dope
4.08/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark brown. Large foamy light brown head. Fades ridiculously slowly. Great head retention. Excellent fluffy wall of lacing.

S: Mild roasted malt with a bit of chocolate and coffee. Nice vanilla mixes in and sweetens it up, almost overpowering the roasted malt. Get a bit of nearly-burnt toastiness, like pretzels. Lightest bit of dark fruit in there too.

T: Smoke, some char and vanilla all mixes together up front. More char, chocolate and the vanilla is turning sweeter and stronger here. Finishes with creamy vanilla, almost marshmallow-like at points. Finally, hints of bitter char and smoke stand alone and linger in the aftertaste.

M: Full bodied, very smooth and creamy.

O: A really tasty porter. The vanilla is quite strong and honestly it does overpower the roasted malt and smoke a bit. Having said that, it is a nice sweet and creamy vanilla and is absolutely delicious. I'll call it even. Tasty beer.

Photo of ngeunit1
4.32/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark brown-black color with a thin finger of frothy khaki-chocolate colored head. The head fades down fairly quickly leaving behind some lacing.

S - Aroma is a mix of roasted chocolate malts, roasted coffee, vanilla, some earthy hops, and a touch of dark fruit and booze.

T - Starts off with a mix of roasted chocolate malts with some caramel malts, vanilla, and a hint of dark fruit. Through the middle, some roasted coffee come through with some earthy hops, a touch of bitterness, and some more vanilla. The finish is a mix of roasted chocolate and coffee with vanilla, a touch of dark fruit, and a hint of booze.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth and a touch thick with a sweet, roasty, and warming finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nice big porter with a good balance of chocolate, coffee, and vanilla and enough body to balance.

Photo of CHickman
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Lark in East Northport, NY; pours pitch black color with a thick 2 finger foamy dark tan head that faded slowly and left very good spotty lacing.

Smells of toasted grains, dark chocolate, roasted notes, piney hops, fruit and acrid smoked sheet metal. There is some brown sugar and syrup or molasses coming through, but the metallic smell throws it all off as a porter for me.

Thankfully it tastes better than it smells with sweet malt, bitter coffee grinds, cocoa powder, toasted grains, dark chocolate, yeast or wheat bread, piney hops, dark fruit and like the nose some penny flavor. It lacks the rich roasted aspects and molasses I hoped for but it does hide the ABV completely.

Mouthfeel is thin and watery, with very mild carbonation, a little chewy feel somehow and a slightly bitter chocolatey finish with a metallic yeast touch that's on the dry side. Overall it was alright, but not as good as I expected since the Knee Deep IPA's are very tasty.

Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.53/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Had the regular version so when I saw the imperial version, I knew I had to tick it. 22oz. bottle into a Brooklyn Brewery snifter.

Pours a .5 finger light cream colored head with poor retention. Lacing is spotty and sparse but with good stick. Beer is opaque black but rather thin. Average.

Nose is chocolate, lactose, roasted malt, and cocoa. Nicely sweet and creamy. Aromatic too. Pretty good.

Opens roasted malt, liquorice, and chocolate. Lactose sweetness and creaminess in the middle with some fresh dark fruit and more cocoa and chocolate at the end. Finishes sweet candied sugar with a similar aftertaste. Decent.

Medium bodied with moderate to high carbonation. Thin and filmy in the mouth and aggressive and bubbly going down. Accented finish with a pretty clean aftertaste. A bit too thin for an imperial porter.

A pretty middle-of-the-road beer overall. This isn't a lot different from the regular version. A bit sweet and the body is just way too thin. I wouldn't really revisit this one.

Photo of wvsabbath
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Serving Type - 22oz bottle

Appearance - Dark tan, brown with a near 2 inch thick, foamy head, with tons of lacing.

Smell - Roasted malts, chocolate, vanilla, some coffee, has a bold malted milk aroma near the finish.

Taste - Classic malty porter flavor, with a big vanilla bite. Velvety smooth and creamy, rich but not overly sweet. Chocolates and coffee and mild and add some complex flavors without overpowering in any way. A nice nutty taste with a little wood near the finish.

Mouthfeel - Malts and vanilla really take hold of tongue. Palate gets more malts and vanilla, along with coffee, chocolate and some hops. Aftertaste is malty, chocolate, vanilla and a little bitter hop kick.

Overall - Really nice, smooth and flavorful. Plenty of vanilla but has great balance. Alcohol is really masked, drinks like a standard 6% porter. Creamy, silky, drinks like a dessert beer, but can be pair with dinner or a cigar, or even out on the porch.

Photo of DovaliHops
4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark, black color, with a medium, tan head that goes down slowly. Scent is quite roasty. Roasted charcoal and burnt marshmallow seem to be the main components of the aroma. The aroma serves this beer well. Tastes is chocolatey at first, with subtle vanilla notes. The vanilla becomes much more noticeable as each sip is taken. The booziness is almost non-existent. So well-balanced that the booze is respectfully hidden. Some smokey notes in the finish. Mouthfeel could do a little better...a little light, but plays well with the easy drinkability. Overall, I find this Porter to be extremely drinkable...as well as extremely scary for the ABV. Drink with caution! Great beer overall.

Photo of Greywulfken
4/5  rDev +4.7%

A: dark translucent brown pour yields a black ale with a few fluffy fingers of fat mocha-colored head

S: vanilla and licorice were dominant for me, from the nose through the finish; undercurrents of roasted dark malt

T: lots of vanilla up front, reminiscent of the vanilla extract that comes in those little brown bottles; slight alcoholic edge to the vanilla flavors; anise and licorice-like flavors complemented the vanilla, but also created a distinct character that had something like flashes of mint? Once acclimated to the initial flavors, enjoyed a more chocolaty finish; other flavors I noted were akin to coffee with milk and sugar.

M: slick and smooth, mild roasty aftertaste, low bitterness; medium-light feel, modest carbonation on the tongue

O: as advertised - fans of porters, especially those with vanilla, should be delighted. You won't notice the abv too much, but as I indicated, some seemed to be present in the vanilla; easy drinking and mellow. Not usually a fan of too many porters, but I liked the high abv and vanilla/anise aspect, and also felt that beer delivered on its promise, so my score may be a higher than a porter purist's.

Photo of suckaj
2.52/5  rDev -34%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

2013 bottle, vanilla is all gone

Photo of ksimons
4.04/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A-very dark brown, almost black, with two fingers worth of light tan head

S-chocolate, dark coffee with a bit of roast, and vanilla sweetness

T-chocolate and vanilla with a light nuttiness to it and some roasted dark coffee in the finish. No alcohol detected in the taste.

M-medium body, very creamy, moderate carbonation

Overall very enjoyable, nice amount of creaminess and chocolate and vanilla sweetness

Photo of Beerswag
3.77/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Looks nice with a pitch black body and fluffy 4 finger almond colored-big-bubbled head. Smell is toned, and mild coffee,chocolate roasted malts, with the vanilla apparent.taste is bitterness of dark cocoa, coffee, vanilla, hop-bitterness from the hops, no fruit from the hops apparent. slightly dry finish not too sweet thick body syrupy nuttiness coming from the roasted malts and the coffee sticking in the background and on the nose.getting a little bitterness on the finish from the vanilla and hops melding, however not overdone. Would pair nice with vanilla desserts such as ice cream or flambésor with a cheddar bisque,or extra aged Nutty cheeses.

Photo of dpgoblejr
4.85/5  rDev +27%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A chocolate fudge sweetness dominates the aroma, though somewhat subdued, with a slight tan head yielding spots of lacing. Chocolate covered coffee flavored marshmallows is my best way of explaining the taste. Carbonated with a creamy, smooth finish. Outstanding Imperial Porter that I will have try again!

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Imperial Tanilla Porter from Knee Deep Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 156 ratings.