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Mesquite Smoked Porter - MSP - Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling

Not Rated.
Mesquite Smoked Porter - MSPMesquite Smoked Porter - MSP

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

162 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 162
Reviews: 61
rAvg: 3.77
pDev: 13.53%
Wants: 11
Gots: 32 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling visit their website
Texas, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  6.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: champ103 on 12-10-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 162 | Reviews: 61 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ChanceK
2/5  rDev -46.9%

ChanceK, Aug 24, 2012
Photo of ChadQuest
2.3/5  rDev -39%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Batch 5. Bottled 6-1-11

I start to crack the cap and this thing sprays everywhere, a ton of psi in the bottle. I set it in the sink and come back a few moments later.
In the glass this looks dark brown, opaque and hazy, really murky.
The aroma is smokey, barbeque mesquite, smoked wood, wet ashy wood.
Flavors are not overpowering as i thought, the smokey flavors are decent, this is really woody though throughout the whole beer, everything is inoculated with damp saturated wood. keeps reminding me of burning houses i've been in.
Not any carbination left, the gushing took it all out. Mouthfeel is thin. Dont know if the psuedo-infection did this or not, i'd assume so.

ChadQuest, May 10, 2012
Photo of eclipse54
2.42/5  rDev -35.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A 22 ounce bottle from turfy that I received for winning his "Taste of Texas LIF" a while back. Bottled on 06/01/2011, batch 005, and reviewed from notes taken 09/30/2011.

Gushed a considerable amount upon opening, and what was collected had a Crayola crayon brown color with a chocolate milk sheen to it. About an inch of foamy, khaki head develops. Aroma is of chipotle, charred wood, meat, campfire smoke, anaheim peppers, chile, and faint cocoa. Lots of smoke and spice. It tastes of chipotle, smoke, pork, a strange beef sausage, cocoa, dirt, and chile. A significant amount of wood as well, giving it the flavor of wood fired meat. Mouthfeel is sticky, dry on the finish, has ample carbonation, but lingers for a considerable amount of time with a potent aftertaste. Overall, this wasn’t my favorite beer and isn’t one I plan on revisiting.

eclipse54, Jan 07, 2012
Photo of SpdKilz
2.5/5  rDev -33.7%

SpdKilz, May 01, 2012
Photo of BuckTuckian
2.5/5  rDev -33.7%

BuckTuckian, Apr 30, 2014
Photo of TheBeerAlmanac
2.5/5  rDev -33.7%

TheBeerAlmanac, Apr 09, 2014
Photo of drummermattie02
2.5/5  rDev -33.7%

drummermattie02, Dec 15, 2011
Photo of champ103
2.58/5  rDev -31.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Have tried several bottles, and they all seem infected?

A: Pours jet black. A huge tan head gushes out of the bottle. It takes forever to poor this. The first sign of an incfection.
S: A plastic, bandaid, veggie, sulfur, slighty sour aroma. Smoke, chocolate, wood, roast. This is an odd one.
T: Again, a mingling flavor of bandaid, veggies, sulfur, smoke, roast, and chocolate. An odd metallic sourness. This is bad.
M/D: A medium to full body. High carbonation that is a bit prickly. Hard to drink, and a bit over the top.

I think a few batches have been infected. A gusher with odd plastic, bandaid, and sulfur. On tap, one of the best smoked porters I have had. This is a mess though. I hope RC can clean this up cause it is one of my favorite Texas beers. See my tap review for what this should be.

champ103, Aug 31, 2011
Photo of TexasBrewSlinger
2.73/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured very dark brown/black with head that dissapated slowly

Smell is VERY smokey. Charred gamey meat, a little salty note, underneath all that there is some classic toasty chocolate.

Taste very much like the nose. It has a very strong barbequed meat flavor, some nice rich notes underneath but the smoke is overbearing.

Overall I think this could be interesting paired with the right food but I was not feeling it tonight. They need to dial back that smoke to make a balanced drinkable beer.

TexasBrewSlinger, Oct 02, 2011
Photo of CooperEllis
2.98/5  rDev -21%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz into 8oz tasting glasses, split 2 ways, twice. Batch 005, bottled June 1, 2001.

Very cloudy pour, hazy, muddy, thin bubbled. Not very bright, not particularly appetizing.

Aroma: Rich malt, layered mesquite smoked characteristics.

Flat taste. A touch watery. The first sip is all smoke and by the time this is coating your mouth the underlying porter simply doesn't stand up. I don't know if I would drink the porter alone, thus the sub 3 rating. This would likely be excellent pair with something, a complementary flavor. However, as a standalone sipper, this isn't up to snuff.

It's a bit watery, which may be a blessing. If it where more full bodied I believe the smoke would be the only flavor. Some carb issues as well, this bottle gushed over even after an 8oz pour was taken.

The first in my Texas box that I haven't enjoyed. While I'm reviewing it here first, I need to type my reviews to two other Texas beers that were solid.

(154th)

CooperEllis, Jan 08, 2012
Photo of weonfire
3/5  rDev -20.4%

weonfire, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of trebbates
3/5  rDev -20.4%

trebbates, Jul 27, 2013
Photo of Dogleg
3/5  rDev -20.4%

Dogleg, Aug 27, 2014
Photo of Ford
3/5  rDev -20.4%

Ford, Mar 26, 2013
Photo of lackenhauser
3/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Nice black color. Quite foamy and fluffy head on top. Metallic and almost blood like aroma. Faint smoke coming thru. Strong roasted flavor with a somewhat espresso like tinge to it. Enough smoke to be noticed but comes across somewhat astringent and sharp. More of an off flavor then smoke to me. Body is fairly thin and really lacks any kind of "umph". Overall somewhat "bleh" for me. I can't even give it decent marks for being a porter. Have had their IPA and double IPA which were great-will not be deterred by this experience.

lackenhauser, Oct 31, 2011
Photo of seeswo
3/5  rDev -20.4%

seeswo, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of BeerThursdays
3/5  rDev -20.4%

BeerThursdays, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of ms11781
3.08/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to duff247. 22oz bottle poured into an imperial pint glass.

Pours a deep brown color, almost black. Looks to have a bit of a body to it as it comes out of the bottle. A massive light brown head develops before settling in as a creamy looking tan foam cap. Not much lacing as the foam slips back down the glass to meet the head, but the retention is exceptional. Really nice looking beer.

The nose is extremely smoky and is detectable before the beer is even poured from the bottle. Really heavy char and some woody aromas are here as well. It really is all about the smokiness though.

The taste follows along with the nose. Hugely smoky flavors, some light wood and really strong, slightly bitter char. It's pleasant at first but sort of runs its course after a glass.

The mouthfeel is a bit thin, which is surprising considering how the beer looked going into the glass. The carbonation is lively, which is also surprising, but probably contributes to the thinner mouthfeel.

This was an interesting and unique beer. More smoke than porter. The aromas and flavors aren't unpleasant but they do wear on the palate after a bit. If the smoke could be dialed back a bit to let the porter characteristics come through more this beer could be great.

ms11781, Dec 24, 2011
Photo of kojevergas
3.14/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

22 fl oz brown glass bomber with standard label art and branded pry-off pressure cap acquired at me local HEB grocery and served into an Avery stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are below average given the brewery, which has put out a few trainwrecks via its barrel aging program. 6.4% ABV confirmed. Bottled 07/16/13. 15 plato. 20 IBU. 45 SRM. Reviewed as a rauchbier-meets-porter.

Served chilled and allowed to come to room temperature over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor.

Paired with waffle pretzels and melted camembert.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a 3 finger wide head of khaki colour. Nice even smooth consistency, if a bit airy. Lacks creaminess. A bit thin for a porter head. It's fluffy. No lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. Head retention is pretty good - about 5-6 minutes.

Body colour is a predictable opaque solid black - not quite a jet black. Yeast particles/sediment are plainly visible floating in the body, especially towards the bottom of the beer.

Overall, it looks like a pretty standard porter. Not unique or special. There are no egregious flaws. I'm looking forward to trying it.

I'd prefer the head fuller and creamier, with a darker coloration and better lacing.

Sm: Harsh mesquite smoke dominates the aroma, with notes of meat and char in there as well. Dark malts. Subdued chocolate malts. The meat aroma here isn't the usual pork of a rauchbier, but comes off vague and indistinct. Leather, sure. I'm not picking up any nuanced mesquite wood per se; it's just muted smoke.

No hop character, yeast, or alcohol is detectable. Lacks sufficient roast.

Overall, it comes off more like a timid rauchbier than a robust porter. More chocolate as well as some cream presence would be very helpful. For a rauchbier, it's pretty average in strength. More intense aromatics would be welcome.

Given my previous experiences with Ranger Creek's attempts at wood-aging beers, I can't say I'm overly excited to try this one.

T: Okay, so they got the standard foundation right - there's your usual portery dark malts and chocolate malts. No roast, cream, or true chocolate though. There's also none of the coffee they advertise on the label.

Mesquite smoke lends a nice cured meat flavour to the beer, and luckily no overt char or ash makes its way into the flavour profile. I don't find any nuanced mesquite wood notes; it's all the smoke. I'm not an experienced barbecuer, but I doubt I could identify this as mesquite if I tried it blind; I'd be equally as likely to guess hickory.

It's got a leathery tone and some black pepper, sure.

No hop character or yeast character comes through. I do find some very light alcohol presence which doesn't distract from the flavour profile per se, but is nevertheless detrimental.

Okay balance. Has some nice cohesion, but isn't gestalt. They combine the two constituent styles in interesting ways, and I'd mostly consider this a success. Not particularly complex or subtle, but there's a bit of intricacy here. Not nuanced. I'd really love more depth of flavour, especially where the mesquite wood is concerned. Intensity of flavour is below average. Flavour duration is average.

Acridity grows as it warms.

Mf: Not as harsh or aggressive as you might expect. The smoke does roughen up the otherwise smooth and wet mouthfeel, to its detriment, but the effect is slight. Fairly creamy; I'd like it better creamier. Way overcarbonated. Unrefreshing. It's surprisingly soft for a smoked beer, but they could push it still further. Medium-bodied, with a good apt thickness. Nice presence on the palate. Complements the flavour profile well.

Not oily, astringent, gushed, hot, or boozy.

Dr: It's not an ideal marriage of a rauchbier to a porter, but it surpassed my meagre expectations. It's not a great beer in either style, and the whole is not more than the sum of its parts. I wouldn't pick it up again, but it's an enjoyable brew for what it is and would pair well with barbecue. I suppose it accomplishes its aims, and that's respectable.

Ultimately, the smoke element just doesn't blend seamlessly into the porter build, and the beer feels unfocused and a bit scattered as a result. This lack of fundamental balance is what really holds it back.

C+

See also:
http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/429/1769
http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/73/93951
http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/147/90

kojevergas, Nov 27, 2013
Photo of jbphoto88
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A coal colored beer with slight ruby highlights . The head is cappuccino brown and thick. A pretty brew that seems appropriate to drink while I'm smoking some animal flesh on the grill.

The nose is way mild for what it should be. I get a handful of roasted malts but not really any smoke or big scents like coffee or chocolate. Kind of a nasal let down.

The taste is rich and sweet but not in a good way. The sweet over powers the malts flavors which end up muted and plain. The smoke comes through more then the nose but isn't the best flavor to compliment the malts. This brew is a let down.

Mouthfeel is the best part with a firm carbonation yet the smooth body of a porter. It helps me to drink this otherwise disappointing beer. In the end this is a weak porter and the novelty of smoke does little to distract from that fact. Mesquite smoked porter is average at best.

jbphoto88, Sep 10, 2011
Photo of greenspointexas
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

greenspointexas, Dec 14, 2013
Photo of cgrunin
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

cgrunin, Sep 11, 2013
Photo of BarrytheBear
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

BarrytheBear, Jun 29, 2013
Photo of DonFrap
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

DonFrap, Jan 12, 2013
Photo of Meleah
3.25/5  rDev -13.8%

Meleah, Apr 28, 2013
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Mesquite Smoked Porter - MSP from Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling
85 out of 100 based on 162 ratings.