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Spy Porter - Tree Brewing

Not Rated.
Spy PorterSpy Porter

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

37 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 37
Reviews: 30
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 9.42%
Wants: 3
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Tree Brewing visit their website
British Columbia, Canada

Style | ABV
English Porter |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: canucklehead on 11-29-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 37 | Reviews: 30 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of harpus


3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

07-16-2013 20:43:26 | More by harpus
Photo of KStark

British Columbia (Canada)

3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

06-12-2013 14:30:44 | More by KStark
Photo of WillAndSarah

Ontario (Canada)

4.25/5  rDev +11.3%

04-03-2013 00:56:28 | More by WillAndSarah
Photo of leaddog

Alberta (Canada)

4.11/5  rDev +7.6%

650ml bottle

Appearance- Pours a dark cola brown with a finger of frothy creamy head.

Smell- roasted malts, hazelnut, cocoa

Taste- Warm roasted malts, hazelnut, and cocoa flavours. Excellent roasted profile that lingers on the palate.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with light-to-moderate carbonation. Dry finish. Smooth body.

Overall - An enjoyable English porter by Tree Brewing. Great display of roasted flavours in regards to malts and hazelnuts. They tell the truth on their bottle ("a smooth dark English style ale").

02-04-2013 03:20:10 | More by leaddog
Photo of zduerr

British Columbia (Canada)

3.25/5  rDev -14.9%

12-28-2012 20:54:45 | More by zduerr
Photo of KalanM

British Columbia (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -8.4%

11-29-2012 05:27:18 | More by KalanM
Photo of schnarr84

Alberta (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev -8.4%

01-09-2012 07:41:17 | More by schnarr84
Photo of EskimoDave

British Columbia (Canada)

4/5  rDev +4.7%

12-01-2011 06:41:45 | More by EskimoDave
Photo of joemcgrath27

Alberta (Canada)

3.7/5  rDev -3.1%

A - pitch black with a thick tan head that retained extremely well with a lot of lacing
S - roasty with a dark rum like molasses aroma, mild coffee
T - strong roasty malt, rich cold pressed coffee, cola and light molasses
M - smooth and medium to light, roasty bitter finish
O - flavourful and smooth, an easy sipper, not a top shelf porter but definitely worthy

10-06-2011 02:24:00 | More by joemcgrath27
Photo of biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.95/5  rDev +3.4%

341ml bottle.

This beer pours a clear dark reddish brown hue, with two fingers of creamy, rocky ecru head, which leaves a thin, but consistent paint job of lace around the glass in its slow retreat. It smells of lightly roasted biscuit malt, chocolate milk powder, and a bit of butterscotch. The taste is toasty chocolate malt, mild office kitchen coffee, and a subtle vegetal sourness. The carbonation is moderate, the body on the lighter side of medium weight, and generally smooth. It finishes fairly dry, biscuity cocoa, and cold coffee playing things out.

The label proclaims "A Smooth Dark English Style Ale". That about nails it, straight off the top. A little bread, a little chocolate, a little balancing astringency. Sure goes down with ease.

04-01-2011 21:58:53 | More by biboergosum
Photo of kwjd

Ontario (Canada)

3.63/5  rDev -5%

Pours a dark brown with small tan head and some lacing down the glass. Smells of dried fruit with roasted malt. Flavour has quite a bit of sweetness that almost approaches the flavour of an English brown ale instead of a porter, but it is still tasty. A little bit thin in the body. A good porter.

09-18-2010 03:20:24 | More by kwjd
Photo of maniacalmikal

British Columbia (Canada)

4.38/5  rDev +14.7%

not a thirst quencher, but more of a great beverage with snacks or meals when left to warm up to about 10-13C (50-55f) - has a mild sweetness with a slight chocolately taste and that wonderful taste of malt - drunk from a 750 ml. tulip glass, this 341 ml. dark glass bottle of porter is a real treat.

06-17-2010 05:40:39 | More by maniacalmikal
Photo of andrenaline

Ontario (Canada)

3.9/5  rDev +2.1%

Another Tree success!

A- Poured a thin layer of head with no real lacing. Dark brown, almost reminiscent of Coca-Cola without all the carbonation.

S- Light coffee/malt scent, with a bit of a toffee finish.

T- A smokey cocoa taste off the top, with a finish that lingers of roasted malts and coffee.

M- A little more carbonation than what I would consider a traditional porter, but by no means do I mean that negatively. The lighter feel makes this porter very drinkable.

D- As mentioned above, the lighter feel, combined with the mellow flavour make this a great porter.

If you're in the mood for a porter which is light, boasts a noticeable yet not overpowering malt flavour, and is drinkable (i.e. more than one or two), this one is highly recommended!

03-20-2010 01:00:57 | More by andrenaline
Photo of Grunewald

British Columbia (Canada)

3.88/5  rDev +1.6%

A - poured from a 341ml bottle can into a pint glass. It pours semi-clear ruddy black. The head is brown and laces decently.

S - leather, coffee, salty toffee

T - lightly brewed black, roasted malt

M - low carbonation, medium-thin body, slightly creamy with a neutral finish

D - easy drinking with good flavors

02-20-2010 10:16:09 | More by Grunewald
Photo of chickenm

British Columbia (Canada)

3.83/5  rDev +0.3%

Pours a dark brown color with some red visible around the edges. Thin tan head. Aroma of malt, chocolate, and coffee. Taste is similar. Gets better as the beer warms up. Medium bodied and a little over-carbonated. Overall this is a pretty good porter.

12-30-2009 05:33:17 | More by chickenm
Photo of wordemupg

Alberta (Canada)

4/5  rDev +4.7%

341ml bottle poured into pint glass dec1 2009

A the darkest brown with a giant mocha head that has excellent retention and leaves lace only for the first inch of its existence.

S fresh grind and some semi sweet chocolate that just gets stronger as it warms

T coffee comes out a little stronger and I like the mellow sweetness that this beer has going for it

M not bad at all for a porter, not overly thick by any means but far from water and well carbonated to give it a light feel from all the bubbles

D this is a straight across the board good beer, nothing world class but far from anything to be ashamed of. I could drink this all day without any issues

perhaps one of Trees best brews, I would choose Hop Head over this most of the time but this is a solid porter that's worth trying with out doubt

12-02-2009 07:39:26 | More by wordemupg
Photo of Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

4/5  rDev +4.7%

Pours black with retaining moderate white head. First smell is licoricey, then chocolate big-time, vanilla and a bit of coffee in the secondary. Above average mouthfeel, a good drinking chocolate porter. Suitable carbonation. Nice at 5% abv.You will like.

01-13-2009 04:53:52 | More by Sammy
Photo of biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

4.03/5  rDev +5.5%

Dark top soil black with an immaculate pearl white trim that heavily contrasts. The beer has a kind of chalky complexion, far from the inky jet black tone of some; in fact it warms with shades of light auburn when held directly under the light. The head is a bubbly lather that thins out over the center but drapes the sides with lasting prints of lace.

The aroma is a tad conservative, granted English style porters are by nature more reserved. I'm speaking solely about the roast, which is relatively moderate when held in comparison to other New World offerings. That said, it really works to its favour - there's not that harsh notion of charred malts burnt to the bottom of an ashtray common to less balanced examples.

Tree offers plenty more to your sense of smell than just the toasty biscuits. Very pleasant is a subtle, almost tart, note of dried cherries. This hint of fruit is blended amongst a shelf's worth of bittersweet bakers chocolate and vanilla beans. My nostrils have become a packed house.

The flavour doesn't quite showcase all the attributes its aroma might have you presume it posses. There's a nice roast biscuity base with an ounce of sooty smoke. What there isn't, and what I would have liked, is a bit more caramelization and perhaps a few pinches more of chocolate, too. The taste is good, don't get me wrong, but it's mild and a little too ordinary.

It also failed to keep pace with the aroma as it acclimatized to room temperature. While warming seemed to accentuate and fine-tune the bouquet, it did little to remodel the taste except maybe accent the chocolate. There was no complaints with the mouthfeel. The beer kept itself enjoyable with great balance; I see no end to the drinkability of this porter.

In the end, this drank like the prototypical English porter - and one of the best examples that will come to mind from here on in. This brewery got it right. I've yet to try many of the other Tree Brewing beers but if I can expect them all to be as well crafted, high quality and true to style as the Spy Porter then I'm going to get right on it!

11-23-2008 03:33:12 | More by biegaman
Photo of bobsy

Ontario (Canada)

4.33/5  rDev +13.4%

Midnight black pour with a copious tan head, which faded to a film, but left some lace. Nice roasty aroma with some chocolate and iced coffee of all things. Nice, smooth, creamy roasted malt flavour. Good doses of chocolate, caramel and berries (especially in the finish). Creamy coffee and smoke. Medium -light body and medium carbonation. Excellent drinkablity for a porter, and a great example of the style. Tree should be proud of this offering.

Thanks to BigBry for being a standup trader - your selections are spot on!

11-23-2008 03:05:52 | More by bobsy
Photo of Proteus93


3.6/5  rDev -5.8%

A: A deep, rusty amber... slightly red. Semi-creamy head leaves a full sheet and a thin trim of lace after receding.

S: Malts, caramel/light chocolate, some vanilla bean, something almost woody, though it is not wood aged to my knowledge.

T: Moderately roasted malts... some light and subtle chocolate, but vanilla makes a presence in its place. Slightly ashy flavours - like a mild charcoal.

M + D: A little on the lighter and more carbonated side. Maybe a little unusual for the style, but not too bad overall. Not a bad take on it, and something I'd gladly have again if the opportunity arose.

07-05-2008 07:02:48 | More by Proteus93
Photo of allergictomacros

Ontario (Canada)

3.73/5  rDev -2.4%

A - Pitch black with a good head of creamy foam.

S - Very toasty with notes of molasses and caramel and fruity.

T - Coffee comes on strong in this, with rich dark fruit and burnt sugars. A bit on the sweet side and a bit of tartness as well

M - Fairly light in body, with a spritzy carbonation.

D - Pretty drinkable and less astringent than expected. Sessionable porter.

05-24-2008 03:33:14 | More by allergictomacros
Photo of Graham5161986

British Columbia (Canada)

4.25/5  rDev +11.3%

A: pours a dark, cola-like colour with a 1 finger dart-tan head that has excellent retention and leaves a gorgeous sticky lace.

S: nice chocolate and coffee malts, nutty and a slight brown sugar sweetness.

T: beautiful coffee and chocolate malts fill your mouth with a touch of hops in the middle and an incredibly smooth, creamy, nutty finish. The head is so nice and creamy!

M: full bodied and creamy, nice amount of carbonation and a smooth, creamy-dry finish.

D: This is a great porter - nice chocaolate and coffee malts, a perfect amount of hops and a creamy-smooth finish that calls for sip, after sip, after sip! It's so nice and easy to drink, I could probably put down 2 or 3 of these - but it's a big beer and it's definitely an excellent sipping beer too.

Well done Tree brewing!

02-19-2008 00:08:04 | More by Graham5161986
Photo of ChrisCage

Alberta (Canada)

4.03/5  rDev +5.5%

A- This brew definitely has a cola color to it, but against the light a slight reddish hue pokes through. I was impressed initially with the 4 inch head but unfortunately it was 90% gone in less than 2 minutes.

S- I was impressed with the different aromas coming through in this. I picked up deep nutty smells and toasty malts, but not to the point of burnt. I also enjoyed the initial bitter hops that graduate into some slightly sweet caramel notes.

T- This tastes similar to how it smells, but with a more cocoa and bittersweet chocolate notes. I really enjoyed the finish of this beer as it contains a distinguished hoppy bitterness, but not overbearing, that hits the back of the tongue and throat nicely.

M- I was expecting something a little thicker, but the body resembled something more like skim milk to me, or something just a little more, but not a creamy texture really. I really liked the mild carbonation, which really allowed me to let the beer sit in my mouth and take in.

D- This is a nice smooth, easy drinking beer, packed with flavor. I probably wouldn't have more than 2 of these in a sitting before feeling the need to move on to something a little more thirst quenching. I would definitely recommend this for anybody to try.

11-12-2007 07:04:58 | More by ChrisCage
Photo of MAB

Alberta (Canada)

3.4/5  rDev -11%

Excellent example of the style. The bottle is a 750 ml size and you get two large glasses from one bottle- a nice serving size for this since you can share it with a friend.
Nice brown head, hints of the chocolate malt coming through in the taste, not too sweet (well balanced).
Available for sure in many beer stores in Calgary, and probably in most of Alberta, as well as all of the lower part of B.C. It is made in Kelowna but I had a hard time finding it (or any of Tree's products) in bottles in private or gov't. beer stores when I was there earlier this year. I did find their "Thirsty Beaver" amber ale on tap at many pubs though. However the Spy porter is better.
Definitely worth seeking out if you're in Western Canada.

03-20-2007 20:46:03 | More by MAB
Photo of Metalmonk

North Carolina

3.38/5  rDev -11.5%

Just barely letting any light in, Spy Porter has an ultra-dark brown color that shoots some ruby through when held up to light. Lots of bubbles and a modest but good-looking head.

Malty toffee notes prevail in the aroma. Buoyant fruitiness adds to the mellow and enjoyable aroma.

There appears to be some oxidization and some unwanted (I guess) sourness, which interrupts the flavors trying to get through. Adds light chocolate elements to the toffee and dark fruits noticed in the aroma. A bitter, piquant, raisin-y finish.

Tastes a little off to me. Maybe I need to try another bottle. Right now it's not knocking my socks off, but it's certainly not going down the sink either.

12-26-2006 21:11:40 | More by Metalmonk
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Spy Porter from Tree Brewing
85 out of 100 based on 37 ratings.