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Tokyo Black - Yo-Ho Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Tokyo BlackTokyo Black

Educational use only; do not reuse.

76 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 76
Hads: 174
Avg: 3.75
pDev: 18.93%
Wants: 18
Gots: 19 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Yo-Ho Brewing Company visit their website

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Naerhu on 12-25-2005

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (22) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 76 | Hads: 174
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.3/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Definitely looks like a porter. Tastes like one too. Nice smoky tone on there that accents the thick malts. Smooth. That is the key word here. I think this is one of the more masterfully brewed porters I have had in quite some time. So thorough and distinct. I feel like I'm watching a master painter slowly move their brush against a canvas and admiring every inch of movement that the brush deposits paint from. This is a very nice porter and the third beer I have tried from this brewery. They have a new fan in me. Now if only I could read their website.

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Photo of Amalak
4.1/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A. It is in fact black. Nice foamy brown head that leaves some lace.

S. Kind of smells like cardboard.

T. It's has a toffee feel to it, and that cardboard smell fits into the taste, even if mild. Interesting taste. Very nice and interesting taste. There's a candy taste to it. Kind of like root beer candy.

M. Full-bodied and tingly.

O. Interesting taste. I really like this. Not your typical porter but worth a try.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.83/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours an opaque jet black in color with very little hints of very dark brown when held up to the light. The beer has a three finger tall pillowy dark tan head that reduces but leaves about a half finger tall head covering the entire surface of the beer. Significant lacing is observed.

S: Overall the beer has a rather mild smell, which is a little unexpected with the style. I detect a light amount of dark roasted malts and a creamy lactose (like you would get in a milk stout).

T: There are dark roasted almost burnt malts with a light amount of bitterness. The bitterness only lingers a very short amount of time and is not overly intense or aggressive.

M: On the lighter side of medium bodied with moderate amounts of effervescent carbonation. Slightly on the thin side.

O: This beer is very easy to drink and quite enjoyable. I could easily see this being a sessionable beer, especially in the early autumn just as it is starting to get cool/cold in the evening.

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Photo of Jimmys
3.91/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

350mL can into tulip. some sort of canned on/best before date on the bottom, but i cant make out what is what from it.

A: opaque black body. very fine bubbles are a pretty tan color. retention is average, but the lacing is a little poor.

S: mild notes of freshly poured black coffee. a little bit of chocolate chip cookie too. not fresh out the oven, but more like opening a bag of homemade chocolate chip cookies. interesting notes.

T: a dry roasted flavor starts things off. warm notes of vanilla and the milkiness reminds me of a latte. finish is tin-y for just a second, and then a long roasted flavor.

M: the mouth is actually a bit spritely on an very close to being light, but medium body. a little less carb would be the bomb on this brew.

D: pretty good example of an "american" porter from a japanese brewery. i really am digging the can it came in as well as the graphics on the can. certainly an eye catcher. if this were more moderately priced i would certainly purchase more of this.

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Photo of cwguy5
3.88/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - deep brown, almost black with thin, tan head that faded to a swirling cap; some light lacing left behind

S - pretty standard porter aromas... roasted malt, some coffee, some dark chocolate

T - roasted malts but not to the point of bitter, coffee, chocolate, black walnut

M - thin-medium bodied with moderate, fine carbonation; a mild, drying finish

O - always eager to try dark beers from Japan and this one did not disappoint. nice porter with black walnut twist flavor-wise. check this one out if you get the chance.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.78/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours opaque black with a half finger light brown head that dissipates relatively quickly, no lacing. Aroma of roasted malt a bit of coffee. Smooth subdued chocolate, roasted malt and light coffee flavor with a slight hint of smoke at the finish. Light to medium bodied. A pleasant, well integrated but not too complex porter.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.61/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass. Jet black with a finger of tan head.

A good nose of burnt malt, but rounds out with roasted malt.

Heavy hitter on the burnt malt in the taste. I like it. Joined by nice bitterness makes it "gripping". Hint of milk but the burnt malt reigns supreme.

On the creamy side, smoother, bubbles on the tongue. Medium body.

A tasty, standard porter.

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Photo of zeff80
3.85/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At the Red Paddle Bistro at the Gunflint Lodge.

A - Poured out a jet black color with a one-finger head of tan, bubbly foam. It left sudsy trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled roasty with some subtle floral notes.

T - Good roasted malt backbone with chocolate and toffee flavors. Light piney bitterness.

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

O - This was a nice find - a canned craft ale from Japan while in Northern Minnesota.

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Photo of metter98
3.83/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: This beer is almost jet black in color (only some traces of amber are visible near the edge of the glass when it is held up to the light). It poured with a finger high tan head that died down but consistently covered the surface.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of lactose, similar to what you would expect from a milk stout.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste has flavors similar to that of a milk stout. There are hints of burnt malts in the finish.
M: It feels light- to medium- bodied and slightly thin on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation that tingles your tongue.
O: This beer is quite easy to drink and goes down easily.

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Photo of DonDirkA
3.51/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Ive never had a japanese beer that I like but this one isn't bad. Smells like coffee with a little chocolate. The taste is coffee, straight up with a slight aftertaste of mocha-like chocolate. Its kind of a watery beer though, goes down like a light beer so that's a little disappointing. Overall maybe a B- beer but as far as japanese beers go its an A.

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Photo of Minkybut
3/5  rDev -20%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I poured this average beer into my tumbler at 45 degrees. The beer was black nd poured a decent head with good lacing. The beer had a milk chocolate taste and a hint of smokiness . The beer was just not that great and did not jump out with yummyness so I am going to have to say no to it specially for its crazy high price of over five dollars a can.

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Photo of clayrock81
3.65/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a blackish body with quick dying tan head on top of a mild but pleasant malty aroma. Pick up caramel/chocolate along with roasted/bready malts - touch of coffee. Medium-bodied and chewey, goes down easy, but just falls flat in taste department. Chocolate and caramel sweetness is minimal and touch of sticky malts are rather not well-balanced with mild coffee malts. Decent beer out of a can that was cheap; no real complaints.

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Photo of snaotheus
3.64/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz can poured into a couple pint glasses

Pours black, still, little head or carbonation. Smell is is chocolaty and coffee-ish. Rich.

Taste is sweet, lots of coffee, maybe a little cherry.

Mouthfeel is thick, a little chalky, pretty nice for a porter. Overall, this is a pretty decent beer.

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Photo of GRG1313
3.5/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Black with a medium dark khaki head that fades but is nice on the pour.

Nose is full of plumed coffee/plumed chocolate. Hints of vanilla and a hint of coconut and carmel.

Mouthfeel is medium thin but nice carbonation and decent balance.

Flavor profile is simple but nice roasted coffee and hints of chocolate malt and cocoa. Tastes a bit like a chocolate/mocha malt flavor.

Finish is cocoa/bitter chocolate and bitter roasted coffee. Finish is long lasting.

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Photo of DarthKostrizer
3.5/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to MrVonzipper for the can share

Look: Almost black and totally opaque with 1/4 head and no retention

Smell: Dark fruits coffee and some chocolate

Taste: Little bit of chocolate and coffee upfront with a bit of ash on the backend

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with low to medium carbonation

Overall: It is a decent little beer

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Photo of ehammond1
3.38/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


Thanks for sharing, MrVonzipper!

Nearly black with a thin brown head. Spots of lacing left down the glass.

Somewhat simple aroma--mild roasted malts and some mild coffee.

Simple, flavors: roasted malt, mild coffee, a hint of bitter chocolate, and some unfortunate ash/char flavor, though it isn't particularly distracting.

Medium bodied with ample carbonation.

A decent enough Asian/American porter, but there are too good of beers to try to revisit this one anytime soon.

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Photo of biglite351
2.77/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - dark as night with a tall creamy off-white head.

S - mild malts, chocolate and dried fruit. If it was stronger it would be nice, as is it is a bit boring.

T - malt, touch of smoke, meaty. However, very mild.

M - thin but a lot of tingle all over the tongue.

O - quite drinkable but mild enough to opt for something else.

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Photo of Jayli
4.15/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Consumed 10/14
Poured in to a pint glass

A: This beer pours an opaque black with a two finger of creamy, light brown head. Head recedes at a decent pace, leaving nice sheets of lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is chocolate, roasted malts, and coffee.

T: Taste starts with the roasted malt character. Nice milk chocolate comes in and really fills out the middle. Some powdered cocoa flavors seep in here as well. Coffee notes finish this beer out.

M: Lighter side of medium body, medium carbonation, relatively light and crisp feel.

O: Goes down easy, tasty, not too filling, mild kick, nice representation of style. This is easily a well balanced and highly drinkable porter, one worth sitting with for a while.

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Photo of MrVonzipper
3.66/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pitch black with nice looking 1cm light brown head. Medium retention and mild lacing.  

Nose smells like cardboard to me. Surprisingly flat and weak. Slight roasted malt and nuttiness.

Flavor is pretty nice. Light roasted coffee and malt. Good Balance. A little woody. It doesn't have that typical, ricey-like Asian malt flavor that most Asian beers seem to have.

Medium bodied. High carbonation that is nice and creamy.

Overall it's a pretty good beer. Very easy to drink. A good American porter made in Japan.

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Photo of kbutler1
3.53/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can. A little pricey at about $5 a pop but figured I would give it a try. Popped the top and poured into a NB tulip glass a dark non transparent brown/black color with a 1 finger mocha tan head that slowly settles. The arom is sublte but has notes of coffee and dark chocolate. Medium mouthfeel. Medium roast coffee flavors that slowly transition to a smooth dark chocolate note endign with a slight bitterness. Some sweetness but still dry. Minimal lacing. Overall, a nice drinking porter but a little too pricey for me to go for again.

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Photo of emerge077
3.98/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Single can from Healthy Spirits. Served in a stemless wine glass.

Black body, frothy tan foam. Creamy texture, with lots of lacing all around the glass. Foam breaks up in a pattern that looks like a floating bed of seaweed in the ocean.

Dark chocolate, mellow roast, malted milk balls.

Lightly bittersweet flavors of chocolate, and mellow coffee. Some lightly charred roasted barley comes through in the middle. Flavorful and smooth, with a creamy feel. No off flavors, and overall clean. A nice Japanese Porter, up there with Hitachino and Baird in my humble opinion.

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Photo of billshmeinke
4.17/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a nonic

Pitch black body with about two fingers of beige head. Retention is good. Not much lacing.

Smells os sweet chocolate malts, a bit earthy and herbal, malted milk balls as well. Sweet, but definitely a hefty dose of hops to balance things out.

Taste is charred, roasty, espresso, hints of black licorice, chocolate malt, a touch fruity and estery then there is an herbal and earthy hop presence that rounds out the back end. Really nicely balanced and layered.

Mouthfeel is light, well carbonated, fairly clean, and dry on the finish.

This is actually a really solid porter. It makes me think of Darkness, if Darkness was a regular stout, not an imperial stout. Kinda didn't wish I liked this so much, because it's quite price at around $5 a can.

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Photo of Klym
3.4/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a stone nonic.

A: Black with a 1 finger creamy, khaki colored head and carbonation bubbling throughout the body.

S: Big vanilla overhang with coffee, an irony dried blood tinge, wood, caramel, non-lactose centric milk note, and honey roasted nuts. Odd and complex, but makes me very interested to drink it.

T: As though they mixed the nose with club soda, all of the nose but coming through much lighter with a generic roasted wood taste dominating. There's more vanilla in the finish, but not quite enough flavor overall. Kind of a big let down.

M: Smooth and creamy at first but goes into a club soda mouthfeel quickly with a little old graham cracker residue feel in the mouth after swallowing.

O: I'm always interested to give things from Japan a shot as I think there's a lot of potential there, but this one fell short in the taste in mouthfeel. I can't account for quality considering the distance this beer must have traveled, but as it is in my glass it still has distance to go.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up this single can from Total Wine. Pours pitch black with a nice beige head. Smells quite toasty and with distinct notes of blackstrap molasses, but it doesn't smell sweet. In fact, it's quite dry. The taste is interesting- also very dry, with an almost meaty, savory flavor up front, followed by charcoal notes, and grassy hops, as well as some bitter chocolate, some light nuttiness, and roasted grains. Very dry, but quite smooth in the mouth, this has a nice lingering bitterness as well. A pleasant surprise.

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Photo of hreb
4.26/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cool 350 mL can served in pint glass. Beer is pitch black with a THICK mocha brown head. Relatively hoppy aroma for a porter, and not too roasty, nor sweet.

Coffee, hello. Erm, did I pick up a can of Japanese coffee? Supper roasty in the flavor, and relatively heavy body. Medium to light carbonation, within the appropriate range for the style Layers upon layers of roasted barley. As much stout (in between sweet and dry) as porter. Secondary flavors of baking chocolate and perhaps...unmalted barley? And at only 5% ABV there is a ton of flavor here with nothing to hide behind.

Yum. Don't know what the nay sayers could possibly be talking. Unless you just don't like porters and stouts this is totally worth seeking out.

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Tokyo Black from Yo-Ho Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 76 ratings.