Shallow Grave - Heretic Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Shallow GraveShallow Grave

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

222 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 222
Reviews: 54
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 9.87%
Wants: 21
Gots: 31 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Heretic Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Zorro on 12-16-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 222 | Reviews: 54
Reviews by shleepy:
Photo of shleepy
3.2/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had on tap at Gourmet Haus Staudt in Redwood City on 3/8/2012.

A: Dark brown. Small, off-white head.

S: Chocolate, faint toastiness.

T: Roasty chocolate milk. That about sums it up.

M: Medium to heavy body. Not as velvety smooth as some better porters/stouts (even something like Velvet Merlin).

O: OK for the style (I don't remember ever having an awful porter, though), but nothing too interesting.

More User Reviews:
Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: deep brilliant ebony with a ½” finely bubbled foam cap, dissipates to film
S: chocolate, some fruit, earthiness
T: Chocolate, toffee, hints of coffee, traces of cola, no big roast flavors.
F: Creamy but very effervescent for a porter. Fine carbonation and a lot of it, medium full body.
O: The big carbonation washes out some of the malt flavors but on the whole an excellent American Porter.

Photo of jj139
4.14/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On Tap at Brewery

A - Dark, dark brown with a tan/mocha one finger head. Lacing is present but not very thick or heavy.

S - Roasted Malt, dark coffee, caramel, chocolate, with hints of toast and raisins.

T - Coffee was very upfront right off the bat followed by the caramel. Roasted malts rounded out the flavors.

M - Medium body with medium/low carbonation. Creamy finish with just a hint of bitterness.

O - A very good solid porter, while I am not going to give up drinking Black Butte Porters, this will find its way into my fridge on a regular basis.

Photo of Srsly
3.53/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

On tap at Verdugo Bar

S - very roasty, lots of coffee notes along with dark chocolate and some sweeter malts underneath.

T - starts well, with coffee and chocolate in the primary positions, as in the nose. A nice example of the style until...

M - Wham! I got hit with a fatty bitter finish that totally caught me off guard. I wasn't expecting it and honestly it felt pretty harsh.

O - I liked the flavor profile and the smell, I would even say they were above average for the style. However, that bitter finish hurt my enjoyment of the beer. I'm even more surprised at how intensely bitter it tasted because I see on their website that it's only supposed to be 33 IBU. Interesting.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%

Pours a thin head on a black body.
The aroma is roasted malt and chocolate, nice.
The taste is a great balance of roasted malt, chocolate, coffee with a a slight bitterness.
The texture is thick with lower carbonation.
A superb porter.

Photo of StoutItOutLoud
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22-oz bomber to tulip. Bottled 1-28-2013. Traded for at Bottlecraft in San Diego (North Park, thanks Brian!) 5-29-2013. Consumed 6-29-2013.

A: very dark chestnut-coffee brown. medium carbonation with large mocha head fading quickly, but 1/2-finger head lingers. very little lacing
S: the roasted malts appear here as dark chocolate, faint toffee and espresso, grape skin.
T: less impressive than the aroma - dark chocolate bitterness, smoke, not sweet
M: thin

Photo of Takahiro
4.7/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just popped open a 6months old bottle
I did not intend age it, but ended up in my fridge for a very long time.

A: pitch dark black, heavy whipping tan foam that lasts several minutes
S: roasted malt, coffee, dry prune
T: rush of roasted malts, very well balanced with the malty back bone. very dark fruit taste (figs and prunes). some alcohol warming on tongue.
M: nice and dry finish. some alcohol sweetness

a great beer! this is one of the best porter/stout! highly recommend it

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.32/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 picked up today at the COOP... prepping stuff for dinner tomorrow... poured into my Cigar City snifter.... good dark tan head.... the brew is dark brown but still has great clarity. drapes of lace as the brew drops...

Wow.. the nose on this one is fantastic .. it just smells "brown" ... chocolate ... brownie batter ... deep caramel essence ... great malt profile without too much hop presence messing up a good thing.

Flavor begins with a nice dark malt bite.. chocolate/carob... lite coffee and roasty malt.. a bit of malt sweetness makes the roast components linger for a bit.. long lasting finish.. almost like a liqueur..

Body is medium and nicely coating.. sorta lighter carbonation lends to a higher drinkability with the overall brew... I dig this one for sure.

4/4.5/4.5/4/4

Photo of jmarsh123
2.88/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours black with a thin off white head that fades immediately with minimal lacing.

A little bit of chocolate and some roasted malt, but really struggling to find any substantial aroma to this.

Flavor is similar. A little chocolate and roasted malt. Not overly flavorful. Just a standard porter.

Thin for the style. I'd prefer a bit more creaminess. A tad too much carbonation as well.

I thought this one was pretty bland. There are no huge off flavors, but it kind of lacks flavor in general.

Photo of SHODriver
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: poured into a nonic pint to a deep black with ruby edges and a small tan head with decent retention
S: smells of coffee and chocolate with a bit of bitter hops and a touch of roasted barley
T: roasty and chocolatey with some coffee flavors a bit of caramel sweetness as well through the middle but the roast and chocolate battle it back. swallow is coffee and a bit of bittering hops with a touch of chocolate
M: smooth body and a medium amount of heft on the palate. it feels a little thick for a porter. good carb as well
O: pretty impressive. it's a well made beer and it tastes good. it's a little heavy but it makes up for it with flavor and the carbonation helps keep it from being too big. It's a solid beer and I look forward to trying some other stuff from Heretic Brewing.

Photo of claspada
4.22/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pitch black espresso color with no escaping light. Light brown soapy head that slowly recedes leaving some spotty lacing.

Aromas begin with typical standard for a porter. Light roasted espresso beans, milk and dark chocolate. Darker sweet toffee and caramelized malt aromas emerge as it warms. Much less roasty than your average porter, which I like.

The tastes directly follow the nose with lightly roasted coffee, dark and milk chocolate as well. The toffee, toasted bread and sweeter dark caramels become more dominant as it warms and overtake the roasted flavors. I really like this beer and it's perfectly balanced flavor profile.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation. Finish in somewhere between dry and semi-sweet. Perfect once again. ABV is no where to be found; drinks like a session porter but with much more flavor.

Overall, this was the third beer from Jamil and Heretic Brewing and all have been super. Really great porter, maybe one of the best I have ever had; up there with Fullers and Deschutes which is special company. Nothing mind-blowing, just super super solid. Recommended especially for the low price point.

Photo of Zorro
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nearly light proof dark brown colored beer with a small tan head that doesn't last.

Very aromatic beer. Sweet with a strong chocolate and burned Starbucks coffee scent. Little bit of toasted bread and vanilla scent. No real hop scent.

Starts out sweet with a strong patent malt taste and a strong bitter finish. Sweeter than average almost like a Milk Stout. Chocolate, vanilla and caramel are the strongest flavors. Tasty and well rounded.

Mouthfeel is thick.

Overall a super easy drinking Porter. Might be on the sweet side for some, if you like Milk Stout you will like this.


From the makers website:
abv: 7%
ibu: 33
srm: 33

Photo of Mark
4.27/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this very nice porter at EJ Phair ale house. They have Heretic brews fairly often on the guest taps. Beer was a dark brown leading in to stout black. My pint had about a finger of head and while lacing was moderate, the patterns were elaborate. Nice burnt toast aroma with some chocolate notes. Taste was very roasty with a long lingering hoppy finish. One of the better porters I have tried, very drinkable and enjoyable. Another winner from this up and coming brewery.

Photo of JustinQ
4.2/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving Type: 22 oz bottle Poured into Imperial Pint.

Appearence: Opaque, No red hue even in the right light, though it may be my lighting. Tan, maybe even brown colored head.

Smell: Chocolate, Roast, sweetness, almost like hot cocoa aroma. No hops no Diacetyl.

Taste: Chocolatey Roast flavor, Classic Porter beer with a fruity sort of twist to it. In my opinion the fruitinss comes from a yeast character.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy then dry in the end. Perfect for a late night relaxing.

Overall: Great beer. I am amazed. This is really a great beer. Good job to Jamil and all the folks at Heretic

Photo of zac16125
3.89/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle into a pint glass
no bottling dates

A: Opaque black, 3 fingers width of light tan head that has good retention and leaves lots of lacing. 4.5

S: Big chocolate notes, roasted malt, caramel, whipping cream. A pretty big sweetness, blends nicely with the roasty porter notes. Straightforward, but very nice. 4.25

T: Like the nose its a combination of roasty notes and sweetness. Too much sweetness in my opinion. Its kind of got that cheap chocolate sugary sweetness to it. A bit of bitterness as well helps to balance things out. 3.75

M/D: Fuller side of medium body, but not thick. May actually be a bit thin for the flavors it carries. Carbonation appropriate. Drinkability is limited by the at times cloying sweetness. 3.5

O: Good, not great. Worthy of a try, but not something I would likely get again. 3.75

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.16/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

thanks to archenemybrew for this beer!

poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: black bodied beer with 3 fingers of tan head that results from a hard pour. Spotty lacing and good head retention.

Smell: Chocolate and mild roast malts! This is a great smelling porter!

Taste: Exactly like the nose. Nice chocolate note with a mellow roast malt flavor. As you keep drinking this beer, the roast starts to build a little bit. A hint of sassparilla and light smoke in the finish.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation. Really nice and easy drinking porter. Mouthfeel is appropriate for the style with just a little bit of creaminess. Not a hint of 7% abv. A well made beer.

Overall: Great example of a porter. Great chocolate notes; thats definately my favorite part about this beer. Its a solid beer for sure.

Photo of 57md
3.77/5  rDev -4.6%

Deep dark brown color. Hearty body. The roast is certainly present but not super potent. This offering finishes off with an odd note at the end.

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.79/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bomber into a shaker pint, the beer is jet black, with a frothy, bubbly, light, filmy, light tan head. Aromas of mocha, char, campfire, chocolate, and hints of cream highlights. Flavors are bitter roasted coffee forward, with notes of hazelnut, crème, and campfire smoke. Very light, dry bodied, with a smoky and bitter coffee aftertaste. The finish is dry, with a smoky and bittersweet linger.

Photo of efhart
4.09/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This porter almost had it all with great taste, balance and hints of chocolate, caramel, coffee. The color was deep and alluring with a slight foam on top. My only issue with this porter was it was just a shade on the thin side for body. This was not enough to ruin the beer for me as I would drink it again, but just a bit unexpected.

Photo of Falcon91Wolvrn03
3.84/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – A super dark brown beer, with a good tan head and nice lacing.

Smell – The smell wasn’t very strong; roasted malt and a little chocolate.

Taste – A very classic porter. Roasted malts with a little extra sweetness that makes it above average.

Mouthfeel – Medium body, lightly creamy, good carbonation for the style.

Drinkability – This is an easy drinking porter. It’s above average, but I didn’t find anything exceptional.

Photo of mactrail
3.65/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thoroughly black in the tall glass with a nice beige head rising high. Not too much aroma, just a note of dark malt. Pleasant mouthful of suds. Strikes the balance between sweet and dry. Fairly malty with more of a medium body. So dark, but the charred flavor seems to have been kept at a minimum. Just a hint of burnt raisin toast. A little bit woody, a touch of nut shells. Modest hops with a slight bitter aftertaste.

Nothing really stands out with this, but it's a very drinkable and pleasant Porter. 22 oz bottle from Olive Tree Market in San Diego.

12-08-2013 Update: Tried a bottle of this I had in the cool basement. Not very impressive. I poured the rest of it in the skillet with the chicken and apple sausage. Label says Bottled 10.29.12

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.93/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Arbitrator for the bottle.

Appearance: Deep dark brown. Starts with a decent sized dark tan head. Drops to a small creamy collar and cap. Nice smooth pour. Minimal to moderate carbonation on the pour.

Smell: Solidly roasted with some faint hints of cocoa. Chocolate malt with some underlying caramel malt. Slightly sweet with some creamy, almost oat-like backing. Very knightly hopped. Small hint of coffee and a nice milky chocolate. A touch of smoke on the back of it all.

Taste: A hint of old coffee under a deeply roasted malt base. A hint of ash and char in the back as well. Chocolate malt in abundance tempered by a little caramel malt sweetness. Some cooked and caramelized sugars as well. Dark chocolate, cocoa, and bitter baker's chocolate. Some dark fruit and a hint of raisin. A touch grassy with some distinct alcohol on the back. Lots of roasted malt and increasingly sweet as it warms. Some grassy notes as well.

Mouthfeel: Creamy medium leaning toward full body with a moderate carbonation. Nice and clean with a slick finish.

Overall: Dig a foot, take a sip. Rinse and repeat.

A decent enough porter. Heavier on the roasted malt than is typical, but crushes the chocolate aspect of it all.

Photo of Pintofbrown
4.38/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I dug myself a shallow grave with a nonic pint.

Appearance- The body is as dark brown as dark brown can get before being called "black". Of course, the body is completely opaque. The brown sugar foam is incredibly dense and the lid is very smooth. It grew to almost two-fingers, and has retained it's mass well.

The beer also produces a good amount of sheet lacing with each drink.

Smell- Well that is something special! A good amount of milk chocolate and only a little roast. Even a little bit of tart and dark fruit is showing, kind of smells like figs.

Taste- Whoo! That is very roasty! It is almost overwhelming on the first couple of sips. Then a very great thing happens, cocoa powder and a slight piney, hop bitterness begin to cover the palate.

The finish is long and has a ton of that roasted malt and only a slight bitterness. Some big flavors in this one!

Mouth feel- This is fantastically creamy with very good coating. Chewy certainly applies to the viscous feel of this beer. For such big roastiness, it finishes so easy.

Overall- This porter has a nose that promises a slightly sweeter palate. However, it surprises with huge roastiness and sublime cocoa flavors. The hop bitterness is a nice touch and not over done.

This is a great porter that I would gladly have again.

Photo of srandycarter
3.3/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Almost black, brown. Tan head, fast to ring. Lots of cling.

S - Cocoa, choc chip cookies, very pleasant.

T - Not so nice. Astringent, harsh, no sweetness. Dry as all get out.

M - Good carb, medium body, balance is hard when it's so one sided.

D - Liked it up to smell!

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.62/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at The Golden State Cafe in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours an opaque black with a dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of roasted malt, cocoa, and slight coffee bean aromas. Taste is the same with a mild roasty bitterness with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but it smells better than it tastes in my opinion.

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Shallow Grave from Heretic Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 222 ratings.