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Baltic Thunder - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Baltic ThunderBaltic Thunder

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

886 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 886
Reviews: 532
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 11.63%
Wants: 59
Gots: 42 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: akorsak on 01-05-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 886 | Reviews: 532 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of marcpal

New Jersey

3.23/5  rDev -16.5%

On tap poured into tulip at Stuff Yer Face, New Brunswick.

Had this beer on Tap at Capone's in Norristown, PA.

A: Dark brown almost black with a dark tan head.

S: Coffee and chocolate malts. Some alcohol here.

T: Sweet and chocolatey, didnt really catch the coffee that was in the smell. Very little hops and have to admit to being a bit let down.

M: Somewhat oily for the style and the alc did have a warming effect.

D: Not a favorite and a bit too chocolatey and chewy for my liking.

02-09-2008 21:50:58 | More by marcpal
Photo of WesWes

New York

4.38/5  rDev +13.2%

The beer pours a dark brown/black color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a robust black and roasted malt scent that's dry, but with some sweetness. The taste is great. It has a silky smooth flavor that goes down easy and finishes a bit on the sweet side. It hides the 8.5%abv well and provides a complex array of malts. It's complex and quite rich. There are hints of roasted malt as well as chocolate and crystal malts. Damn, this is one smooth drinker. The mouthfeel is awesome. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. I've been waiting for the release of this beer for some time now. It definately lives up to the hype.

02-09-2008 01:19:31 | More by WesWes
Photo of dsa7783

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev +2.1%

1 Pint, 6 fl oz bottle copped from Oak Tree in South Plainfield... pours a jet-black, ebony hue with minimal reddish-tan head that soon dissipated and lacked staying power... smell is replete with toffee, caramel, and dark lattee nuances... taste complements the aroma with a dark espresso, cocoa, butter, caramel, slight vanilla, and chocolate flavor... nice, smooth, rich mouthfeel that really satisfies... another top-brew from Victory... a good beer for the Winter with a nice, warming 8.5% ABV... good drinkability and the alcohol is hardly detected behind rich dark, roasted malts, and cocoa flavors... I really liked this one... Recommended...

02-08-2008 22:54:38 | More by dsa7783
Photo of brantadid

New Jersey

2.93/5  rDev -24.3%

Poured black with a huge three finger light tan head. Head diminished over a 5 minute period and left behind an average amount of lacing.

I got some off aromas in the nose. A little funky. It makes me wonder if I just got a bad bottle. Some chocolate and tar with a mild hop aroma.

Tasted somewhat malty with very little hop bitterness. The hop flavor seemed like an afterthought. I also got a lot of alcohol in the taste which was surprising because it didn't present in the nose.

Mouthfeel was light, almost watery. Lighter than normal for a porter. Finish was fairly long but not complex.

I love Victory. They make two of my favorite beers. This was a disappointment, I have to wonder if I just got a bad bottle.

02-08-2008 22:13:15 | More by brantadid
Photo of Gavage

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev +2.1%

Appearance: pours a black color with a 1/2" light tan colored head. Some mild lacing sticks to the glass during the session.

Smell: light roasted malts and soft chocolate tones are pleasant.

Taste: roasted malts, mild chocolate flavors, prunes, a hint of old coffee, and some warming alcohol make up an enjoyable beer.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied but a bit thinner than expected. Lightly crisp at the start, smooth and a bit dry at the finish. Short roasted malt and chocolate filled aftertaste.

Drinkability: a nice version that is easy to quaff despite the alcohol levels. Defintely worth picking some of this up.

02-08-2008 12:11:43 | More by Gavage
Photo of sjohansen


4.13/5  rDev +6.7%

I made a day trip out of the release for this beer, and I wasn't disappointed. I've finally gotten around to dipping into the bottle I brought home from the release, and again, not disappointed. Pours very dark, but it refuses to stand up to the light around the edges. The light releases a brown color that almost becomes a dark red where the brew meets the snifter. A thin light-coffee colored head quickly disappears leaving a half moon on top of the dark sea. It leaves sticky, spotty lacing through the session.

You can smell the thunder from about a foot away, but I couldn't pinpoint the nose until I was right in front of it. Even then, there are definitely notes in the brew that I couldn't put a finger on. It's like smelling 20 different things that create their own unique combination, which is close to heavenly. The strongest notes were those of dark fruits, similar to raisins or dates. Also rich breakfast blend roast coffee and an open box of crunchy toffee.

There is definitely fruit in the taste. Not so much sweet, but smooth and the smallest bit tart. If there was a fruit called dark bananas, that's what I would call it. Not overripe, but this is what dark bananas would taste like. The sweetness comes from the toffee flavor, similar to a sweet coffee. The sweetness to it is all on the front of the tongue, giving way to a strong malt backbone that is slightly bitter on the back. Very slight peppery aftertaste, which is the only sign of the strength that the Thunder is bringing.

The carbonation from the mouthfeel tickles the tongue. It leaves the tongue and throat slimy and sticky like taffy, slightly more like syrup then I enjoyed.

Like nothing I've tried before. The Thunder makes me dream of trips to Downingtown.

02-08-2008 01:49:11 | More by sjohansen
Photo of SixpointJMH

New Jersey

3.43/5  rDev -11.4%

The Hammer returns! Well, sort of. Ever since local brew master extraordinaire Tom Baker closed up shop on his Jersey Shore based Heavyweight Brewing Company in 2006, a legion of die-hard fans has been clamoring for Baker to unveil his next project, an eco-friendly brewpub and restaurant on the outskirts of Philadelphia.

In the meantime, Baker enthusiasts are now able to get their hands on Baltic Thunder, a Baltic Porter created as a new interpretation of his wildly popular Perkuno's Hammer Imperial Porter from his Heavyweight days. While the recipe for the Baltic Thunder is said to be all new, it has also been noted that said recipe was heavily influenced by the original Heavyweight beer. So, let's see how the "New Hammer" stacks up against the old, shall we?

Baltic Thunder pours an average looking dark brown color with lighter brown highlights coming through when the pint glass is held up to light. Quite honestly, I found the color to be a bit light for the style and was expecting this one to be much darker than it is. While still relatively dark, I'd have to say that this is one of the lighter colored porters that I've seen. The liquid body of the beverage is topped with a head that is bubbly and semi-creamy, with a light tan color to it. Head retention time is moderate before settling in to a very thin lace. Somewhat surprisingly, no residue is left on the glass after each sip.

Dipping your nose into the glass to inhale some of the aroma presents a nice blend of roasted malt, chocolate, raisins and some other general dark fruit and berry notes. I am fairly certain that I even picked up a slight note of Belgian candy/sugar as well. The aromatic presentation is well done, indeed.

And now on to the star of the show: the flavor. The first sip presents the flavor as being very much in line with the aroma, with all of the above characteristics blended quite nicely throughout the balance of each sip. A bit more of a sharp flavor comes through here with the introduction of a healthy dose of alcohol (it does weigh in at a hefty 8.5% alcohol by volume, so this was to be at least somewhat expected), which leads to a bit of hotness and sharpness on the tongue. The alcohol is noticeable primarily toward the end of each sip and is rarely, if ever, invasive of the other flavors. Still, dark fruit and a bit of bitter chocolate seem to be the main stars here and they blend together quite nicely for a fairly balanced overall flavor.

The mouth feel is medium bodied and, again, a bit lighter than anticipated, especially given the style. The "heft" of the body should of course not be pushing into the full bodied territory of a stout, but I still would've liked to have seen a bit more muscle behind this one.

Overall, this isn't a bad beer by any means, and is actually quite good at times. The problem is largely that it doesn't hold a candle to the original Perkuno's Hammer, justified criticism or not. Yes, they are two different recipes as noted, which makes them two different beers, but the influence of one on the other is so great that one can not help but compare the two. The original came at you with a near jet-black, engine oil color and balanced the dark fruit notes with more of a coffee base and even threw in a fair amount of smoke flavor. There's just none of that here anymore. I'd liked to have seen them tweak this one a bit more here and there for a more dynamic brew overall, especially in regard to the appearance and mouth feel. It's certainly worth a try and shows promise here and there, but Baltic Thunder is perhaps a bit over-hyped in the end.

02-08-2008 01:03:57 | More by SixpointJMH
Photo of Lupe

New York

3.95/5  rDev +2.1%

Pours dark brown with a nice sized cocoa colored head. Pretty good retention and some sticky lace gets left behind.

Malty aroma with roasted malt, chocolate, toffee, and dark fruit. Mild spice and hops lay in the background.

Starts sweet with toffee and caramel malt. Roasted malt, mild coffee, and chocolate step in next. A load of fruit comes in, dark and tropical fruits and well as leafy and citrus hops. Gets more fruity as it warms, with plum leading the way. Well balanced, nice and malty but never too sweet.

A little watery at first but the creaminess builds as it warms. Medium bodied overall, smooth and slightly prickly. Alcohol shows up towards the end, but this beer is very easy to drink. Goes down very smooth and easy.

A little too hyped and not as good as Perkuno's Hammer, but still a very good beer.

02-07-2008 02:38:38 | More by Lupe
Photo of jasonjlewis


3.95/5  rDev +2.1%

Pours a nice 2 finger head into my huge mug. Nice retention on the glass that fades after a while. Nice full slightly dark brown color.

Mint comes out strongly on the nose. Licorice, chocolate, and tofee are also apparrent. Citrusy piney hops are barely detectable.

Sweet tofeeish and caramel malt notes upfront followed by a mintiness. Licorice and slight coffee notes lie underneath. This is followed by a chocolate sweetness. Some roasted characeristics come through as well.. Hop bitterness is very citrusy and helps to balance the beer out. As the beer warms characteristics of plum and grape come through.

A little bit overcarbonated. However, there is a slgiht creaminess and fullness from the malts. Tiny astringency from the alcohol. Not bad though.

Nicely done baltic porter. Hoppy and sweet. One I would seek out again.

Thanks to Deuane for the nice extra.

02-06-2008 03:13:04 | More by jasonjlewis
Photo of Jerzdevil1116

New Jersey

3.98/5  rDev +2.8%

Had this beer on Tap at Capone's in Norristown, PA.

A- Dark brown body with a tan head. Nice lacing left on the glass.

S- Roasted malts. Hints of coffee and dark chocolate. A bt metallic.

T- Sweet and malty up front. Roasted malts with coffee and dark chocolate flavors. A bit of hop bitterness and alcohol in the finish as it warmed.

M- Medium bodied. Pretty smoothe.

D- easy drinking with no aftertaste. I could enjoy a few of these in a sitting.

02-05-2008 20:35:49 | More by Jerzdevil1116
Photo of blackie


4.1/5  rDev +5.9%

a: Gives a one-finger light mocha head that leaves a healthy ring behind. The beer is a deep chestnut brown in color.

s: Roasty, earthy nose with a nice creamy quality to it. Big, husky grain body. Good hop aroma, on the earthy side. Light alcoholic cocoa and burnt nuts.

m: Smooth carbonation on the high end of medium, just a touch prickly at first. Body on the full side of medium.

t: Dominant roasted malt flavor gives notes of medium roast coffee beans...not overly roasty, so I assume a large part of the backbone is husky caramel or something else light. Lighter notes of bitter dark chocolate. Very earthy with a moderate hop presence. Finishes long and very roasty with a medium bitterness and notes of well-roasted nuts.

d: easy...Carries many characteristics of a standard porter instead of going all-out (eg Duck-Rabbit Baltic), which makes this bomber very drinkable.

extra in a trade with BeerBeing, bottle states a best by date of Jan 02, 2009

02-05-2008 05:12:38 | More by blackie
Photo of rajendra82


4.33/5  rDev +11.9%

Solid black in color, and opaque, the body had a smallish head, and unlike several other Baltic Porters I've sampled, the head was not brown in color. The smell was roasty and somewhat hoppy. Some chocolate aroma was present, but it was mostly light. The taste was sweet and sour in a classic Porter manner. Chocolate was more prominent in the taste as were notes of lightly roasted coffee. The astringency was mild, but the carbonation was a little prickly. Well done representation of the style IMHO.

02-04-2008 04:11:11 | More by rajendra82
Photo of oelergud


4.3/5  rDev +11.1%

Brown glass bottle 1 pint 6oz. pry off cap. Purple label with red lettering and an anthropomorphic thunderstorm.
Opaque body with just the slightest maple coming through at the edges. Nice looking tan head of tiny to small bubbles. The head falls fairly quickly and leaves a little lace.
That classic delicious baltic porter smell of sweet, slightly burnt, coffee and cocoa beans with a handful of mild hops, earth, molasses and abit of nut.
Strong semi-sweet chocolate malty flavor tempered by almost equally powerful hops. The aftertaste is even stronger in both hops and malts, very pleasant and long lasting.
Full body with some coating and alot of residual sugars.
Very drinkable, mellow and easy going.


02-03-2008 03:30:26 | More by oelergud
Photo of cichief


4.38/5  rDev +13.2%

Purchased a bomber at Jason's Liquors, Ellicott City, MD.

A- Pours very dark brown with a reddish tint, almost opaque, light brown head, which quickly dissipates.

S- Somewhat malty, sweet, with a hint of burnt coffee.

T- Again coffee and sweet malt, alcohol burn, but finishes dry.

M- Fully bodied, mildly carbonated, smooth on the tongue.

D- Too much alcohol taste to have many, but a good example of the style all the same.

02-03-2008 00:45:27 | More by cichief
Photo of lackenhauser


4.1/5  rDev +5.9%

Have to say great label to start. Very dark in color-a deep, deep mahogany when held to the light. Huge tan head that quickly receedes though leaves a nice 1/8" layer. Quite complex aroma-chocolatey and somewhat sulfury. A dried fruit and vanilla tinge. Strong malty flavor. Powdered cocoa sort of flavor. Bittersweet, caramel taste. Very muted alcohol-its there but its not. Becomes part of the overall scheme. Quite dry in the finish. Decent body. The dryness lends a sort of "rough" patch to it. Very drinkable and enjoyable. A lot of hype surrounds this one. While it is no Perkunos Hammer it is still a great example of a little known or brewed style.

02-01-2008 23:02:43 | More by lackenhauser
Photo of asabreed

New York

4.43/5  rDev +14.5%

Bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: A deep dark amber, and to me surprise it's not opaque, though I suppose most in the style aren't. I'm thinking more the lines of a RIS. Nice creamy lacing sticking to the sides in an off-white.

Smell: A lot of malty and balanced sweetness, from rich dark chocolate to light toffee, caramel malt, light mocha, and some fruit and citrus from the hops with some strawberry and a bit of sour cherry.

Taste: Let it warm up to get the fullness of the flavors. It reminds me a bit of a heavier oatmeal stout, with the richness and sweetness there, and the more berry and fruit of an Imperial Stout, and with the lighter body, it's an amazing combination. Highly drinkable, with no alcohol burn or overdone alcohol characteristics, with some earthiness, maple and vanilla, light toffee and coffee, and again the fruit flavors of lighter berries. The lack of cloying heaviness, which can happen to me after some bombers of RIS, is nice here, and allows the long finish to continue to make its mark without suffocating the palate. And finally, the lighter citrus hop oil becomes coating, adding both, I think, the citrus flavors and the fruit on top of the darker chocolate and roasted malt flavors.

Mouthfeel: Wonderful and velvety to the last drop, perfectly balanced carbonation. I don't know how this could not be a perfect score.

Drinkability: It's been a while since I've had Perkuno's Hammer. However, I'm not judging anything based on that in the first place; I just wanted to make it clear. But the fact that I still have a 4-pack of Perkuno's in the cellar makes me happy to eventually compare the two. But for around $5 a bomber, it's beyond extremely worth it for such a flavorful brew. Sure, there are better examples of the style out there, but I can certainly that say that I'd make this a winter staple if they ever decide to do 6-packs. Not to mention, honestly, how does this go down so easily? It seems almost impossible that the ABV is almost at 9%. Bravo, Victory, for putting your own spin on the resurrected recipe.

02-01-2008 03:56:30 | More by asabreed
Photo of RblWthACoz


4.18/5  rDev +8%

Pours pitch black with a tan head. Thick malty nose with tones of coffee. Just loads of malts in there. Flavor is thick. Very full body. Easily noticed malt presence that keeps a firm control over things. Minor coffee tones. Thicker earthy edge. Mild tar going on. Very smooth on the liquid. Very easy to drink. It's definitely good, but I have had a chance to sample a lot of the eastern European baltic porters and there are several others that shine a bit brighter than this one. Still a damn tasty beer though.

01-31-2008 12:04:16 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of Mudpuppet


4.3/5  rDev +11.1%

Thanks to gwong for the chance to try this incredible beer.

A- Poured from a growler into a pint glass. Pours a dark brown or black with a thick 1/2 inch dense tan head.

S- I feel like a broken record in my reviews but this beer had a light nose. Some slight notes of coffee and roast malts.

T- Very strong roasted malts with definite porter characteristics. I have always thought of porters as somewhat chalky and this fits that. I get notes of chocolate and coffee. I also get slight notes of dark currants and raisins.

M- CARBONATION! I am amazed how much carbonation is in this beer. This could be because of the taps at Whole Foods I am not sure.

D- The upside to the carbonation is that it makes this 8.5% alcohol beer extremely drinkable. My first pint went right down. The second began to catch up with me but it is was still very drinkable. If you can get our hands on this beer grab a pint or growler or keg!!

01-28-2008 00:57:29 | More by Mudpuppet
Photo of beergeekjoey


3.33/5  rDev -14%

A: Chocolately brown pour, dk tan head. Foam dissipates rapidly, leaving light lace, moderate collar, moderate legs. Nice garnet highlights when backlit.

S: Earthy initial aroma - I originally thought yeast-related. Rich toasty & chocolately aromas with slight roasted notes. As it warms, the earthiness appears to be hop-related, and the underlying malt is clean. Some vinous alcohol notes appear with the warming.

T: A bit high on roast -- hits the tongue up front, and is the most prominent flavor. Missing the expected dark fruit, caramel, toffee -- chocolatey rather than complex malt. Fairly bitter and some earthy hop flavor showing through. Slight alcohol tang. Either bitterness or alcohol bite lingers in aftertaste.

M: Medium full body, medium carbonation. Alcohol warming is pleasant and fairly significant.

D: Smoooth but fairly heavy.

Overall: Fairly one-dimensional -- pleasant, but without the malt complexity that normally characterizes style. Roast is a little overwhelming -- needs a lighter touch.

01-26-2008 01:26:49 | More by beergeekjoey
Photo of Riggsy


3.9/5  rDev +0.8%

22oz bottle poured into Imperial Pint

A: Pours a dark brown with ruby highlights. A one forefinger tan head forms and remains well into the pint.

S: Aroma seems a little weak to me. Some light roasted malt aroma accompanied by dark fruit esters.

T: Smooth roasted malt flavor, when I took my first sip I got licorice in a big way, but as the beer warms it is far less prominent. Starts sweet (molasses I think) but roasted malt bitterness balances and provides some dryness.

M: Medium to medium-full. Well carbonated. Smooth with some alcohol warmth and drying finish.

D: Good brew, this one's been pretty hyped in our local area, and while I'm not blown away, I'm certainly not disappointed.

01-26-2008 00:43:36 | More by Riggsy
Photo of deltatauhobbit


4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Thanks to EGledhill for the chance to try this.

Pours a dark brown with ruby hues when held up to the light, good size head.

Smell is predominately roasted malt, stronger than normal hop aroma for a porter, something odd that I can't place.

Taste is very smooth and creamy, chocolate caramel and malt presence hits first, bit of an alcohol taste in the back but is mostly masked by the creaminess, some nuttiness as well as a slight bitterness.

01-25-2008 23:07:43 | More by deltatauhobbit
Photo of gwong

New York

3.9/5  rDev +0.8%

Poured from a growler filled at the Bowery Whole Foods in NYC.

A: Somewhere between dark brown and black with tiny bubbles in the glass - think Coca-Cola. There's a also a thin tan head that quickly dissipates after pouring.

S: Not a very strong nose but malts are detectable.

T: Malty with notes of chocolate and coffee.

M: Very crisp with enough carbonation to tickle the tongue's taste buds.

D: Very easy to sip and not so strong that you can't enjoy a few glasses in one sitting.

I've never had Heavyweight's Perkuno's Hammer but if this homage to it is any indication, I think I've missed out on a pretty good beer.

01-23-2008 05:14:04 | More by gwong
Photo of NeroFiddled


3.75/5  rDev -3.1%

I'm going to try a different kind of review for this beer and just do it stream of conscious: Forgetting the history, nice label. Resolution could be better. Bill should have seen that. 7:04 pm. This one will put me to sleep. Imperial pint glass. Thinnish brown caramel as seen through the stream of beer at the pour. Yeah, somewhat light in color in the glass as well. Nice creamy tan head. Excellent retention. Smells like an average dark-roasty stout. Kind of smokey in the flavor. Lots of fruit upfront. Brown sugar across the middle. Alcohol. Background notes of thin black coffee. Somewhat similar to Perkuno's but not nearly as rich. Smooth, but also a touch raspy with alcohol. Bitterness is as I remember Tom's. Balanced. I'd like more malt though. Surprising medium body. Perhaps a bit too much zest on the tongue as well - but the carb's OK, I guess it's just lacking body. Dark fruits... is it that burnt currant I'm looking for? Yes, a little. Also bitter, sticky prune skin. Again, smokey or deeply ashen-roast in the finish. It seems something's lacking across the middle. Head retention is average - it's high alcohol so that's expected. Nice rings of thin lace at the outset. Decent spots and splashes. A ring of orange and ruby can be seen peeking through the foam at the surface along the glass. Hmmm, a kind of a burnt chestnut in the aftertaste... like that acrid note that you smell on the streets of Manhattan in late November and December. I'm not feeling like I want to finish this first glass. There's not enough malt to balance the alcohol. The fruit note is nice though. Lacks body, malt balance, complexity.

01-23-2008 00:23:15 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of IrishRedRock


4.13/5  rDev +6.7%

On draught at Zot in Philadelphia. I was excited to find this upon stopping in for a night of all-you-can-eat mussels 'round the corner at Zot. I dearly miss Heavyweight - especially the mighty Perkuno's Hammer - so I had been anxious to sample Tom Baker's work with Victory.

A pint arrived in front of me, not so dark as to be completely black, but not at all transparent. Pillowy tan head nearly an inch thick, with minimal etched lacing as the glass emptied. Carbonation leaves a slight tingle on the palate but finishes smooth. Much sweeter than I remember the Hammer being, and a touch more estery up front...sour, raspberry-like fruitiness. Cocoa is very evident, and the malt profile somewhat overshadows the mild, lingering bitterness in the finish. Alcohol hides itself well, moreso than I remember from its predecesor. All in all a very tasty beer - another excellent brew from Victory, and worth seeking out - but also in my opinion not a dead-on clone of the Hammer.

01-23-2008 00:19:31 | More by IrishRedRock
Photo of davidt


4.05/5  rDev +4.7%

Pours a mahogany-brown color that is translucent at the edges. A large bubbled beige head forms and then fades to a thin ring. The aroma is of chocolate and molasses and is somewhat reserved. The taste is chocolate and roasted malt with some lingering sweetness and molasses. The mouthfeel is light and pleasant, though a bit thinner than I had expected. The 8.5% ABV of Baltic Thunder is very well-masked. I didn’t detect any alcohol burn.

01-22-2008 01:32:38 | More by davidt
Baltic Thunder from Victory Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 886 ratings.