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Black Ball Porter - To Øl

Black Ball PorterBlack Ball Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

97 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 97
Reviews: 48
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 8.85%


Brewed by:
To Øl visit their website
Denmark

Style | ABV
American Porter |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Ingredients: Water, malt (pilsner, smoked, chocolate, cara munich and brown), roasted barley, rolled oats, brown sugar, hops and yeast.

(Beer added by: bark on 03-08-2011)
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Ratings: 97 | Reviews: 48 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.78/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Recent bottle from Premiere Gourmet. Pours thick black. A Denmark biased porter (which often have a bit of an odd taste but let's go with it), thick very roasty, unfortunately following an imperial porter. Good drinkability, with some bitterness. Roasty aroma.Some chocolate and coffee.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2012 01:34:47 | More by Sammy
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.89/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours an opaque black with a foamy super dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, unsweetened cocoa powder, and coffee bean aromas. Taste is much the same with dark cocoa, citrus zest, and slight herbal hop flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of roasty and hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a nice aroma but some fairly intense roast and hop flavors.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2013 04:41:43 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is jet black in color and poured with a two finger high dense dark tan colored head. From the initial looks of this beer, I would assume it was stout and not a porter. The head has excellent retention properties and took a long time to died down, consistently leaving a thick coating of bubbles on the surface and down the sides of the glass.
S: There are moderately strong aromas of chocolate and roasted malts in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and also has some notes of burnt malts.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. I found this to be a tough category to judge because if you look at the beer's opaque appearance you would initially think it feels thin for the style, but if you close your eyes it feels like a typical porter. The roasted malts lend dryness to the finish.
O: If you're looking for a beer that's packed with flavors but retains the lighter-bodied nature of a porter, this is a beer for you. It is also quite drinkable because no alcohol is noticeable in the taste.

Serving type: bottle

10-11-2012 04:23:03 | More by metter98
Photo of TMoney2591
TMoney2591

Illinois

3.63/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Gale Sayers shaker pint glass.

Kinda thought this thing was some sort of Mikkeller collaboration due to the similar labeling, but instead found a new brewer. Right on. This stuff pours a bleak black-brown topped by over a finger of sienna foam. The nose comprises brown sugar, roasted malts, spruce tips, light molasses, light pine, very light balsa, and a small touch of dark chocolate powder. The taste holds notes of bitter dark chocolate, minty pine, balsa, brown sugar, molasses, roasted malts, light bitter coffee, and a twinge of orange rind. The bitterness is clearly on display here, pushing the traditional boundaries of the style. The body is a light-ish medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a sorta-kinda dry finish. Overall, a pretty solid porter, one that goes for the bitterness without getting all of those other ancillary hoppy notes. The cocoa and roast are still there, but clenched together as joint runners-up.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2011 03:30:16 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of russpowell
russpowell

Oklahoma

4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours mahogany with a thumb of mocha colored head. Great lacing & head retention

S: Charred grain & coffee, a touch of baker's chocolate too up front. Cococa dominates as this warms

T: Follows the nose, very dry, some woody hops. Gets very dry as this warms, leafy hops mix with charred grain, some dark fruit buried deep. Finishes drier than the Saharah, with black currants & charred grain & much smokeyness

MF: Medium bodied, very creamy, pretty good balance

A nice porter, but nothing special, took a chance, they can't all be gold. Too dry for me

Serving type: bottle

08-19-2012 04:36:35 | More by russpowell
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

3.93/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, jet-black color with a three-finger light brown head of bubbly foam. It left sudsy rings of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of chocolate and roasted malt.

T - Good chocolate, toffee and caramel flavors with a touch of smokiness. It had a light bitterness.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

O - This is a pretty tasty porter. I like the smoky kick to it.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2012 01:45:59 | More by zeff80
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a thick porter, with a consistent body and a fair bit of a smoky tone to it that is something I usually don't appreciate as much in a beer, but I can dig it here on this one. The highlight of this beer is it's consistency. The detractor seems to be a somewhat too high carbonation. But overall, this is a pretty good porter. Worth trying (as long as the place you get it from is charging a reasonable price for it).

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2012 06:10:59 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

3.65/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-draught into a goblet at Beachwood BBQ. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a one finger head of tan colour, nice cream lacing, great thickness, and good retention. Colour is a solid black.

Sm: Caramel, chocolate, and cream. A moderate strength aroma.

T: Wonderful. The notes from the nose blend brilliantly. Wonderfully creamy. The caramel is restrained, fortunately. Some light roast adds a nice touch. Complex and well-balanced. I dig it.

Mf: Smooth and wet, with some slight cream. Complements the flavour. Not too thick or thin.

Dr: Very drinkable, of good quality, and clocking in at a high price. I won't have this again due to its price, but fans of the style would do well to give her a go.

Serving type: on-tap

12-02-2011 05:13:11 | More by kojevergas
Photo of jdhilt
jdhilt

New Hampshire

3.85/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours with a four finger brown head that fades very slowly leaving a good lace. Black color, no highlights. Light-medium carbonation and medium-heavy bodied. Baked chocolate nose and flavor is baked-burnt chocolate. Higher ABV is hidden. $6.49 for a 330ml bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, Ma.

Serving type: bottle

06-25-2012 22:38:28 | More by jdhilt
Photo of lacqueredmouse
lacqueredmouse

Australia

3.6/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle purchased from Berkeley Bowl West, in Berkeley, CA.

Pours a deep, dark black; yep, opaque, deep, black, and opaque (did I mention opaque), with a ridiculously large head of mocha-beige foam that forms as a dangerous crescendo and threatens to overwhelm the lip of the glass. Lacing is excellent, as is the weight of the body, given what it is. Looks good.

Nose is smooth and roasty, but to be honest, a little generic. Sure, it has the pleasant clear dark malt characters, a mild nuttiness to cut through and an all round smoothness and roundness; but haven't we all seen this before? It's solid. Check. It's decent. Check. But I'm also a little bored by it.

Hmm, I have similar sentiments about the flavour, although it's solid, again. Surprisingly, it lacks a little body, and the nutty sweetness that was present on the nose abandons it here, leaving the roast and the dark ashy bitterness to do most of the work. There are other interesting notes though, including a flash of liquorice through the mid palate and an odd saltiness towards the finish. It's interesting, but not coherent enough as a whole. Feel is light but pleasant.

Overall, it doesn't quite work. There's a dearth of sweetness in the body that it really needs, meaning it leads too strongly with the ashy roasted character, but has nothing to carry it. In some senses, it feels to generic; in others it needs to be pulled back.

Serving type: bottle

06-18-2012 04:13:06 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a viscous, dark chocolate brown color that appears pitch black and completely opaque in the glass with a two finger frothy mocha head. Excellent retention, only slowly fading into a lasting cap that leaves large chunks and streaks of lacing in it's path.

Deep roasted malt aroma that's slightly smokey with some hop bitterness and subtle sweetness. Strong dark malt presence with hints of roasted coffee bean, toast, dark chocolate, toffee, hazelnut and oatmeal.

Medium bodied with a slight creamy texture and an intensely deep roasted malt character. There's a blast of dark roasted malt with hints of burnt toast, oatmeal, dark chocolate and roasted coffee bean. This is followed by a touch of sweetness and hop bitterness providing subtle balance but the flavor is dominated by the roasted flavors. Some slight alcohol heat in the finish but overall the ABV is nicely masked. Still, it is so toasty that it borders on harsh. Pretty tasty but could use some more balance.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2011 07:03:52 | More by corby112
Photo of stakem
stakem

Pennsylvania

3.33/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle into a mikkeller stemmed glass. The brew appears a very dark brown to black color with a light ring of brown clarity around the edges. A brown cap sits atop the brew that slowly recedes leaving patches of lace sticking to the glass. A swirl revives more than a finger of dark brown froth back to the surface.

The smell of this brew is licorice with char and earth. A bit if tobacco and some citrus-like coffee bean quality. Some citrus hopd are also noted overtop of dry burnt grain quality. Very roasty with minerals and sulfur included as well.

This brew is quite bitter with burnt grain that imparts a char-like feel that is bitter and drying somewhat like chewing on cacao. There are some strong notes of bitter coffee that fades to earthy quality. Some veggie hop aspects are noted towards the back that augment the overall bitterness. The aftertaste is dry and burnt.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest level of carbonation. A bit harsh and acrid thy has lots of ashy components to it. The bitterness of the char to the grain and hops is quite bold and doesn't blend together that well. Not a bad brew, it is worth trying if you get a chance but once was enough for me.

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2012 15:52:15 | More by stakem
Photo of smakawhat
smakawhat

Maryland

4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured on tap into a tumbler at Pizza Paradiso Dupont DC.

Off the pour a great chocolate milk brown head is given, all very uniform and one finger sized with lots of staying power. Great big black/brown walnut body color all uniform throughout. While drinking, lots of concentric lacing and circles along the glass. One sexy looking drink.

Nose is a great milky char with some roast characters also. Milk gives hints of cream, but also a big char roast dry powdery sense, almost embers.

Taste is light bodied with a killer roast character in mid palate. Chocolate milkyness, tobacco feeling, and an incredible balance of hop finish bitter.

Overall just a great winning beer here. This great marriage of roast and malt, and hop in a porter is just fantastic.

Serving type: on-tap

11-15-2011 18:26:28 | More by smakawhat
Photo of dbrauneis
dbrauneis

North Carolina

4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours an opaque jet black in color with just the slightest hints of dark reddish brown and light amounts of gentle visible carbonation near the surface. The beer has a finger tall dense dark tan (almost mocha) head that slowly reduces to a small patch of thick large bubbles and a very thin film covering the entire surface of the beer and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of dark roasted malts, burnt malts, and chocolate. Very light notes of alcohol in the aroma.

T: Moderate to strong aromas of dark roasted malts and burnt malts with lighter amounts of dark bittersweet chocolate.

M: Medium bodied with moderate to heavy amounts of carbonation. Smooth with some moderate dryness in the finish.

O: This is very enjoyable and easy to drink - nice complex flavors and aromas with a lighter porter body. The beer looks impressive as it looks much heavier than a traditional porter (more like a stout) and the alcohol is pretty well hidden.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2012 01:44:41 | More by dbrauneis
Photo of Cyberkedi
Cyberkedi

Georgia

4.48/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich, smoky aroma has a strong overtone of sweet chocolate and quality roast coffee plus a hint of molasses. It pours opaque sable just a flea’s eyebrow above black with a thick and rather persistent tan head. Smoky, woody flavor has licorice, coffee, chocolate, molasses and toffee - not too sweet and rather lip-smacking. Smooth, firm-bodied texture has a good fizz to it. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2012 02:23:41 | More by Cyberkedi
Photo of avalon07
avalon07

South Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a jet black color and a thick consistency. There was a huge, foamy, tan-colored, long-lasting head. Excellent lacing. A great-looking beer.

S: A nicely understated aroma of malt, chocolate, hops, and sugar.

T: Tasted of malt, a little coffee, chocolate, hops and brown sugar. Not that it had a huge amount of hops, but it was more than I expected. A well-balanced, flavorful, and focused porter.

M: A generally well-carbonated beer with a somewhat slick finish. Medium-bodied.

O: This is an easy to like, well made beer. Very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2011 01:34:41 | More by avalon07
Photo of gford217
gford217

Georgia

3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330ml bottle.

Pours close to black in the glass with a huge thick tan head which leaves that nice coating of foam along the sides along the way.

Aroma is pretty damn hoppy for a porter with lots of green floral hops, pine and herbal notes. There is some heavily roasted malts and cocoa powder but the hops are what jumped out for me.

Taste also starts with the floral hops but has a heavier roasty malt backbone, with an almost chalky character from the bakers chocolate. Finish is hoppy and roasty all in one.

Mouthfeel is dry, roasty and slightly bitter. NIce soft carbonation.

This is a seriously hop forward porter. Lots of green floral hops, herbal notes and heavily roasted black malts.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2011 03:56:24 | More by gford217
Photo of LiquidAmber
LiquidAmber

Washington

4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Stone Brewery flute. Pours a very dark brown, appearing opaque black. Thin fine brown head that dissipates slowly, leaving nice lacing. Aroma of dark sweet and roasted malt. Flavor dominated by roasted malt with some char and dark dried fruit. Finishes clean and mellow. The roast and charr are nicely supported by the malt and flavors are well integrated. Medium bodied with some creaminess. A very nice, pleasant porter, flavors are robust enough to verge into stout territory. I enjoyed this Danish porter brewed in Belgium.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2012 05:15:05 | More by LiquidAmber
Photo of champ103
champ103

Texas

3.15/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a near opaque black color. A large tan head rises to over two fingers. Rings of stick lace are left behind.
S: Light roasted malt and chocolate up front. That quickly fades to an acidic twang. Even slightly metallic.
T: Follows the nose with roasted malt and coffee up front. Acrid, with a metallic twang. Even acidic in the finish. I am not a big fan.
M/D: A medium body that is overly sticky. Fairly syrupy. A slow sipper. The alcohol is very noticeably.

Overly alcoholic with an acrid, acidic and metallic twang that I am not a fan of. not something I wouldn't purchase again.

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2012 01:49:31 | More by champ103
Photo of Mebuzzard
Mebuzzard

Colorado

3.93/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A solid brew from a new (to me) brewer--I'm told he's kinda/sorta like a gypsy brewer akin to Mikkeller. Not sure...let's check the website.

Dark dark ruby pour, brown tinge. Off-brown/tan head, nice and foamy. Lacing is good

A smoky porter right here. The little bit of smoked malt comes through in the nose and flavors. Both have hints of chocolate, molasses and coffee. A bitterness that seems at first to be dark chocolate leaves a bit of a piny residue. Seems sharp, but the smoke persists. A nice umami presence makes this beer very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2012 00:37:54 | More by Mebuzzard
Photo of CrazyDavros
CrazyDavros

Australia

4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Pours black with a large tan head.
Nose shows complex roast with roasted coffee notes and a little chocolate, bready and nutty malt. Tempting.
Rich flavours. Heavy roasted malt, liquorice, roasted coffee, smooth booze.
Smooth body and carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2013 05:51:56 | More by CrazyDavros
Photo of ngeunit1
ngeunit1

California

4.16/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark black with a finger of frothy chocolate colored head. Fades fairly slowly.

S - Roasted dark chocolate and dark caramel malts, molasses, black licorice, roasted coffee, touch of vanilla and dark fruits.

T - Roasted dark chocolate and caramel malts, roasted bitter coffee, black licorice, molasses, earthy hops, some vanilla, hint of dark fruits.

M - Medium-plus bodied, moderate carbonation. Smooth with a roasted and sweet finish.

D - Nice american porter. Good complexity and balance.

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2013 06:49:02 | More by ngeunit1
Photo of StJamesGate
StJamesGate

New York

4.24/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a viscous jet black with just the barest hint of ruby and creamy piles of cappuccino-colored head that is rock solid and instantly sheets.
Smoke and meat on the nose with maybe some pine tar but otherwise no sign of hops.
Unsweetened licorice in a big way with some fig and black treacle then resin and orange rind hops push their way through.
Herbal green finish and loong bitter linger that can only come from roast plus hops.
Medium, lots of chew, yet dry, slight heat.

Simcoe, Centennial, Cascade

Incredibly dark, with the stickiest black notes like asphalt in summer yet dank US hops still make themselves heard. And yet so not a Black IPA.

3rd outstanding beer in a row from To Ol, these guys are setting the pace.

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2013 00:36:49 | More by StJamesGate
Photo of AgentMunky
AgentMunky

California

4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 33cL bottle into a brandy snifter.

A: Black indeed. Two fingers of thick, tight, mocha head with great retention.

S: Chocolate malts are strong and can be smelled from far away. Some roasted malt, but not much else. Porterish.

T/M/O: Tasty! Rich and luxuriously smooth, with just a tad of carbonation to keep things interesting. Much like the smell -- roasty and chocolatey. Perhaps the best porter I've tasted. Highly recommended; would drink again.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2012 06:19:11 | More by AgentMunky
Photo of Jeffo
Jeffo

Netherlands

4.45/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Got this one at Geers in Ghent. Why didn't they tell me this was going to be that good? Poor customer service...

From a bottle into a snifter

APPEARANCE: A brown pour yields a larger, medium looking, creamy, fluffy, tan head with great retention. Transparent black body with some decent carbonation up the middle of the glass. Head slowly fades to a big foam cap and coats the sides of the glass. A good, full cap remains and leaves lots of nice lacing down the glass. Looks really good.

SMELL: Dark and roasted malts, dark chocolate and cocoa powder. Hints of leather as well. Bold enough as well.

TASTE: Dark malts, roated malts, cocoa powder and some smoky leather flavors. Very flavorful up front. Lots of bitter cocoa, coffee and smoky notes. Big and lingering aftertaste is bitter with plenty of roasted, smoky and chocolate flavors with just a touch of caramel sweetness as balance. This is way too flavorful for an 8% porter.

PALATE: Full body with medium levels of carbonation. Very creamy and smooth on the palate, goes down smooth and finishes just slightly sticky. Full with enough weight and a great finish. Phenomenal.

OVERALL: A stellar offering. I was not expecting this to be that good. A great porter look, a pile of flavor balanced extremely well, and an wonderfully full and heavy mouthfeel for the style. One worth checking out if you can, and getting in quantity if you are so fortunate. If only they had told me...

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2012 18:36:22 | More by Jeffo
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Black Ball Porter from To Øl
90 out of 100 based on 97 ratings.