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Fernet Aged Porter - Odell Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Fernet Aged PorterFernet Aged Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

35 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 35
Hads: 194
Avg: 3.85
pDev: 28.57%
Wants: 19
Gots: 45 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Odell Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  9.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: 1759Girl on 10-11-2013

Over the past year, we’ve collected empty Fernet Barrels from our friends at Leopold Bros. Distillery. Their distinct Fernet includes lavender, honeysuckle, ginger root, bitter aloe, dandelion root, rose petals, chamomile, and pepper. Inspired by the herb & spice flavors of this dark minty liqueur, we promptly filled the barrels with a rich porter. The roasty chocolate malt character is infused with hints of mint and licorice from the herb-soaked oak, creating a decadent flavor and aroma.
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Reviews: 35 | Hads: 194
Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.06/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a porter/stout glass. I have had a couple bottles of this stashed in the cellar and I am unsure of the year or bottling date.

Pours deep brown but settles in the glass pitch-black. Oatmeal-colored head with a caramel tinge to it. Frothy and sudsy head and scattered lace everywhere. 5

Smell really reminds me of cola with fernet, interesting. Strong herbal aroma and some funk. 4

Tastes similar to the nose, like fernet and cola. Chocolatey notes, caramel, peppermint and bitter herbs. A current of vanilla slips in close to the finish. 4

Thinner in body but the carbonation and creaminess fill out the mouthfeel. There's some bitter herb feel and even tartness, which I think has developed as it aged. 4

This is a unique and quirky beer. Very different from the fresh version but I still enjoy it.

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Photo of stortore
3.99/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle into a snifter.

Pours a fairly dark, hazy brown, with a quickly dissipating, medium sized head. A little foamy ring throughout. Smell is malt, molasses, mint, generally herbal, some oak, a little smoke and yeast. Taste leads with malt, then more mint than the nose, licorice, chocolate, oak, some herbs. Some bitterness throughout. Smooth, creamy, a touch thin for the ABV.

A better nose and palate would undoubtedly pick out more of the subtle herbs than me, but I did enjoy this one. Lots of flavors, the mint isn't overdone. Worth a try.

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Photo of drpimento
3.11/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Don't know if I got a bottle.that was turning or what. Moments after I took the cage off, the cork exploded out of the bottle. Out of a non-aggressive pour, I got mostly head and an ounce or two of liquid. Aroma and flavor are dominated by Fernet. Very little porter; Flavor was also on the tart side. I'm not a fan of Fernet, but I do have dear friends in Buenos Aires who love the stuff. I was hoping I could find a way thru this beer to like Fernet. No go. Oh well.

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Photo of pat61
4.6/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: It is a lively pour with deep bright mahogany producing a clingy and persistent frothy 3” tan foam collar with heterogeneous bubbles.
S: Prune and raisin, dark malt, chocolate, faint spice.
T: The attack starts with dark dried fruits, some dark sugars, light roast and hints of chocolate.
F: Creamy medium-high carbonation, medium to medium full body.
O: While the influence of the barrels is very subtle, this is one fine porter.

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Photo of Prasm
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

The fernet would work better with a big stout. The mint and spice from the fernet just overpowers this porter in the mouth - seems a bit disjointed. Though the aromas are high pitched and very enticing.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From BeerAdvocate Magazine #84 (Jan 2014):

We dig it when a brewery thinks beyond the norm. Aged in Fernet barrels from Leopold Bros. (who use lavender, honeysuckle, ginger root, bitter aloe, dandelion root, rose petals, chamomile and pepper in their spirit), this is a 50% Porter and 50% Fernet barrel-aged Porter blend. Simply put: This is one of the most complex and delicious barrel-aged beers we’ve ever had.

STYLE: American Porter
ABV: 9.8%

LOOK: Black, opaque, creamy coffee lacing

SMELL: Earth, chocolate, mint, ginger, herbal, root

TASTE: Lively, very creamy, tangy, syrupy, honey, minty, chocolaty, ginger, earthy, woody, endless herbal linger

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Photo of stevoj
3.94/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap at BitterCreek Alehouse. Aroma is nutty and herbal, roasted malts lurking in the background. Muddy brown body with minimal head. Complex flavors throughout.

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Photo of goochpunch
4.56/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black with a long lasting creamy khaki head. Smells of roasted malts, licorice, and herbs. This doesn't taste overly roasty. Dark malts, light chocolate, well-integrated licorice, some minty herbal character, which pairs well with the chocolate notes. Mouthfeel is creamy, smooth, and full. This is interesting, tasty, and unique.

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Photo of snowmageddon
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: pours an opaque dark black with a lively brown head that recedes fairly slowly for a BA beer.
S:sour, licorice, fernet notes dominate. wouldn't have guessed this is a porter based on the nose.
T: sweet licorice, barrel, ginger, some chocolate and roasted malt notes in there, too.
M: ridiculously creamy mouthfeel, with a prickly carbonation.
O: the fernet barrels give this beer an herbal,licorice, flower-y character that reminds me of gruits i've tried recently. Worth trying for sure. A fun, unique take on a porter.

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Photo of dcscientist
4.49/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another stellar offering from my favorite brewery. This is so much more than a traditional porter thanks to the barrel aging. You definitely get the chocolate and mint flavors first, sort of like a starlight mint, but it's not overpowering. Odell understands balance, and this is no exception. I'm a little surprised that it's this high-alcohol, but hey, it's worth it. Worth seeking out for sure.

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Photo of nmann08
3.52/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

From a bottle, pours jet black with a big, over carbonated light brown head that laces the glass and leaves head after finishing the liquor. This is a bit too carbonated.

The smell is heavy licorice and anise, a bit of earthy hops, chamomile tea, black pepper, and roasted chocolate malt. I think the flavor is slightly better. Dark fruit, some plum, roasted chocolate malt, a little mint. This drinks like a liqueur. This is good, but I wouldn't want alot of it.

Overall, average but taxing on the palate. It is way over carbonated.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.96/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Undated bottle at 55 degrees into snifter
Aroma of lavender, slight ginger, toasted malt
Head enormous (>8 cm, gentle pour because when I loosened the cage, the cork rocketed away, hit the ceiling and bounced off my head), light brown, extremely frothy, sloooowly diminishing to frothy irregular ring and partial layer
Lacing fair – few frothy islands and partial rings
Body dark brown, opaque
Flavor kind of vague – a little chocolate, a little licorice, a little medicinal/herbal overtone; no hops, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate medium to full, creamy, lively carbonation

Appearance 4, Aroma 4.25, Flavor 3.75, Palate 4, Overall 4

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Photo of MrWhips
1.5/5  rDev -61%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

The head on this beer was 8 fingers with a very small modest pour. I couldn't pour it slow enough to keep the foam down. Sipping from the bottle was impossible, only foam, carbonation profile was likened to a shaken up bottle of champagne. The color once it did settle was lovely, dark velvety appearance that was forgotten the moment it hit my lips. This beer was awful, thankfully I only had one and someone else to help me choke it down. I considered dumping it, strongly considered. I barely tasted dark malt notes smothered out by an awful anise/mint flavor backed with a muddy taste reminiscent of old coffee, pottery slip, and NyQuil. I may be doing NyQuil an injustice. The aroma, was almost as bad as the taste, my first whiff made me think of cheeses that smell awful and taste wonderful, disappointed to find this beer is nothing like that, the aroma was a mere hint of the concoction that lurked below. I did not like this beer at all, I imagine there are some who will love it. I understand why it was a 1 time release.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
2.95/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

The beer is dark mahogany with a thick beige cap. The aroma is interesting and complex, offering mint, herbal teas, red wine, chocolate, cinnamon, prunes, figs. The flavor is dominated by mint and an odd herbal sweetness. A myriad of flavors struggle to cooperate. Dark fruits and booze with a weird bitter finish. Licorice and mint with raisins and chocolate. A small sample is more than enough. I'm not a fan and won't be returning to this one.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


Pours fairly thick dark brown with little light escaping with a low dark tan head.. nose is thick licorice and minty.. little dark maltiness really translates except a bigger malty sweetness that helps carry the sweet herbaceous qualities.. hints of dark chocolate rise with warmth, but when this is cold it is a liqueur delivery device.. interesting but I could not appreciate a full bottle of this one.. It is definitely a "sharing bottle" IMO. Glad I was able to have it on tap so many times.

3.5's across the board... and that is generous.

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Photo of mwilbur
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 750 mL bottle into snifter.
A: Pours a luxurious black-brown with a 3+ inch dark mocha head. Excellent retention...lasts literally forever.
S: Chocolate, caramel, and mint. A brett-like sourness. Spices (cinnamon, etc.). Hint of golden raisin. Quite complex and intoxicating!
T: Chocolate, irony minerals, herbal mint, cinnamon (and other spices), and light dried fruit (e.g. golden raisins). Hint of honey with warming.
M: Light-medium body. Lightly sweet up front. Turns toward astringent and mildly bitter minerals which lingers into the finish (this note is a bit off-putting for me...too much like iron).
D: This one was quite interesting...started off very strong (appearance and smell), but then the iron note in the taste and mouthfeel really threw this one for a loop. End result wasn't as good as it could be.

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Photo of LambicPentameter
3.74/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Reviewed from notes after opening on 4/19/14. Enjoyed out of a brown 750 mL bottle with a cork & cage topper. No obvious dating, although there appears to be an obscure code, but it doesn't quite match up to my expectations of a Julian dating. No matter--this was a late fall 2013 release, so i have a reasonable idea of its age. Poured into a large snifter glass.

Appearance - Pours an inky body of brownish-twinged black with no light able to pass through and reveal much of the brown shades that lurk within. Atop the body sits a fluffy one finger head the color of toasted marshmallow which lingers for a minute or so before dissipating to a veneer of intermittent bubbles across the top of the liquid. Lacing is nonexistent but for a streak or two of sticky residue.

Smell - Dominated by a cacophony of herbal notes--fresh spearmint and perhaps root beer notes poke through a muddled blend of herbs that makes this quite unique. It's fortunate that Odell has chosen a blend of barrel-aged and non barrel-aged, as the fernet is plenty aggressive on the smell. Beneath the herbal notes are bitter roasted malt and perhaps some hints of baker's chocolate as well.

Taste - The minty characteristics are not as strong on the taste, but the herbal presence is no less aggressive. The root beer impression is stronger now, but not like your standard soda--more like a house made root beer, with that earthy, fresh component to it, and not nearly as sweet. There are some floral notes as well, with perhaps cardamom and clover, but they are faint, and all of it rests on a backdrop of charred malt and perhaps some vanilla and fleeting oak tannin. Like the smell, the taste is muddled--more of a tone poem of flavor than a symphony.

Mouthfeel - Full-bodied and slightly viscous, with moderate carbonation and a gummy feel on the tongue. I would describe it as cloying, but without the sweetness, if that makes sense. Lingering finish.

Overall, an incredibly interesting beer. I'm a big fan of mint in general, so I had high hopes for this one, hoping the more herbal earthiness of the fernet would do better than straight up mint might. And while I applaud the effort and the outcome for the most part, I can't help but think that it could have been better.

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Photo of hardy008
2.16/5  rDev -43.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours dark brown with a four finger tan head from a fairly gentle pour. Definitely over carbonated. Has an unusual aroma with roasted malt, chocolate, peppermint, licorice, and a variety of herbs. I can't begin to know how many different ones were used.

Also has an unusual taste with roasted malt, chocolate, peppermint, licorice, herbs, spices, and flowers. I know the unusual aroma and taste are from the Fernet barrels. I just wish there wasn't such a strong peppermint taste or smell. I have never been a big peppermint fan. It is fine in small doses, but this is too much for me.

Light bodied with high carbonation, and a strong peppermint aftertaste. This is a tough bottle to finish. Glad I don't have another one of these. I usually like or love everything Odell brews, but here is a strong exception to the rule.

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Photo of arizcards
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Picked up a caged and corked 750ml bottle from BevMo in early February for $14.99.

Beer poured dark brown with a solid large tan head that is leaving lacing behind.

Nose is roasted malts, somewhat flowery, and minty.

Taste is light roasted malts, some chocolate, light mints, and floral elements.

Mouthfeel is somewhat thin for the style.

Overall a different brew from Odell but hats off to their experimentation. Definitely interesting to try...steep price for an OK brew,,,

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Photo of vette2006c5r
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fernet Aged Porter pours a black color, with a HUGE tan lacing head, lots of carbonation, looks like cola. There is a sweet aroma with hints of mint. The taste is a slight sour flavors, nice hints of peppermints, and a nice sharp malt flavor. Good full flavors, a little too carbonated. Overall its a nice beer, no porter flavors, but leaves a nice minty flavor.

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Photo of maximum12
3.82/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Read about this one & set about stalking the shelves of the Twin Cities to nab a bottle. I hope this is a trend of more people mixing more beer with wilder & wilder liquors. I support. 750ML bomber split with my wife on a January evening here at the end of March.

The cork comes out with a sound I've only heard with my .410 in hand - loud & violent, but no overflow, thankfully. The pour is dark brown with red highlights & fizzier than shaken up Shasta Ginger Ale. I have no idea what fernet smells like but the beer is minty with a sprig of mixed spring herbs. Can't whiff the porter at all.

Fernet Aged Porter is seriously overcarbed. To the point that I can barely taste the beer at all because of the fizzing & sizzling in my facial orifice. Fighting past the bubbles rampant, there is a blast of minty freshness: wow. As it warms it takes on overtones of Altoid Peppermints. Ginger is the only thing to fight its way through the Maginot Line of mint; the poor porter appears to have been throttled in the crib, as it's nowhere to be found. Just belched some mint. Mmmm. Points for that. Certainly easy to drink.

Interesting. Wild. Weirdly tasty. Really wish the porter hadn't taken a dive, but the beer is tasty enough that I'm not pining. Good, I think so. Unique, definitely. Buy again? Not at this price. Glad I tried it.

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Photo of mactrail
3.66/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Chocolate mint liqueur pretty well covers the sensation. Not a gusher but huge foam-up, taking eight minutes for the tall glass to settle down to a half-inch of brew. In the snifter, more success after five minutes with piles of beige whipped cream and enough beer to taste, finally.

The smell is my favorite feature, with a deep minty fragrance and some floral aromatics. The flavor is sharp and sugary, with an intensity matched by few beers outside the hop showboats. Syrupy is for once applied accurately to this stuff. Yet weirdly sudsy as well.

From the big Belgian-style bottle purchased at Wilbur's Total Beverage in Fort Collins, Colorado. Fortunately I have forgotten how much this cost.

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Photo of chanokokoro
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a formerly corked and caged 750 ml bottle into an Odell Brewing Company branded snifter

Pours a very dark brown, bordering on black capped by light tan two finger head. Average retention, some thin lacing here and there. Very unique nose, bakers chocolate with hints of roasted malt, mint, herbs, flora, and mixed spice rounded out by anise. Some herbs and spice upfront with quickly shifts to minty dark chocolate. Roasted malt pokes through; finishes with continued dark chocolate notes, some oak, and boozy black licorice. Smooth, medium bodied, fairly high level of carbonation. One of the more unique brews I've had lately. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of denver10
3.67/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with a creamy khaki head. Aroma is peppermint, licorice, a touch of roast. Flavor is similar with its peppermint, licorice, and roast, but also a touch of creaminess in the flavor and chocolate as well. A soft, creamy, fuller mouthfeel. The highlight of the beer for me. Overall, one of the most unique and interesting beers I have tried. Not familiar with the liqueour, so perhaps why I was so intrigued by it. Not sure I was a huge fan in the sense of how much I liked it, but it was very interesting and I definitely enjoyed trying it.

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Photo of russpowell
4.21/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours an effervescent ebony with 3 fingers with mocha colored head. Stellar head retention & lacing

S: Grapes & plums & carob & oakyness

T: Follows the nose, some dark chocolate, figs & a bit of booze bite up front, I do get some mint & some gin-like flavors. Figgy & herbal notes as this warms, plus oaky dryness, plus a touch of anise & mintyness & carob once warm. Finishes with red grape notes, oaky dryness, herbal & minty notes

MF: Medium bodied, firm carbonation. warming

Nice offering, a tad pricey, well over 80 cents an ounce. This drank very well despite the complexity & heft

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Fernet Aged Porter from Odell Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 35 ratings.