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Dark Star Porter - Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's

Not Rated.
Dark Star PorterDark Star Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

209 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 209
Reviews: 151
rAvg: 3.62
pDev: 12.71%
Wants: 8
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's visit their website
Kentucky, United States

Style | ABV
English Porter |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
A rich and robust blend of light, caramel, and dark malts sets the stage for BBC Dark Star Porter’s robust presence on the palate. This smooth but robust porter has complex notes of chocolate and roasted grains balanced by additions of traditional English hops, creating a delicious chocolaty and smooth ale.

35 IBU

(Beer added by: OldFrothingSlosh on 07-30-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 209 | Reviews: 151 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of kmpitz2


3.75/5  rDev +3.6%

Pours a deep brown color with solid amber to ruby highlites with a 3 finger head that settles to a healthy tan cap over the beer. Solid looker, though could be a shade darker. Nose is solid, with moderate to solid roast notes, leaving impressions of coffee, though with a lighter nuttyness hanging below it. I enjoy the aroma of this one. Flavor presents a more nutty profile, with roasted character being more prevalent in the aftertaste. The flavors here could be a touch more bold. I'm getting more of an American Brown vibe from this than a porter. That being said, this one still tastes good. Feel is solid moderate with a touch of creamyness and a light-moderate carbonation. Sold and where I expected it. Overall, this one deliveres, but slightly underachieves as a porter. Call this one Dark Star brown ale and I'd be more satisfied. Still nothing that sticks out as a flaw, just needs a bit more behind it.

03-25-2006 21:57:49 | More by kmpitz2
Photo of MaltyGoodness


3.78/5  rDev +4.4%

12oz. bottle courtesy of kmpitz2.

Pours a deep dark brown with a small tan head. Mild lacing on the glass.

Smell is slightly sweet and malty with a rich cocoa aroma.

Taste is malty and rosty upfront with a large dose of coca that follows through to the swallow. Finishes dry with a lingering cocoa roastedness.

Carbonation is fine, body seems a little light.

A nice, drinkable porter. I would like to have just a bit more uumph in the body....

03-15-2006 01:53:08 | More by MaltyGoodness
Photo of palma

New York

3.6/5  rDev -0.6%

Aggressive pour creates a great looking head. Plenty of lacing.
Roasted malt aroma, peanuts, burnt sugar and maybe some nutmeg? A noticeable metal aroma too, which isn't really my cup of tea.
Taste consists of dark malt flavors up front. Significant bitterness towards the end. Dryer than most other porters Ive had. Smokey aftertaste. Pretty nice mouthfeel. Good amount of carbonation and easy drinking. A solid porter. I would drink this again.

03-12-2006 04:40:31 | More by palma
Photo of arizcards


3.93/5  rDev +8.6%

Received a gift from my friend Mr. Doyle from his beer of the month club back in December. Beer best had by June '06.

Beer pours a deep brown with a decent head that is floating on top. Nose is a slight hint of the chocolate malts. Taste starts nicely with a compliment of those chocolate malts and ends well balanced with a chocolate dry hop finish. Mouthfeel is very good, velvety smooth and creamy. Drinkability is good. This is an extremely smooth drinking beer that is definitely worth a shot.

03-11-2006 23:35:28 | More by arizcards
Photo of nota


3.9/5  rDev +7.7%

Beer pours almost black, but held to the light you can see a ruby appearance. Frothy brown head with little to no lacing. Very soft carbonation. Smell has hint of roasted coffee. Taste consist of coffee and caramel with a smoky like aftertaste. An enjoyable beer.

02-11-2006 02:20:28 | More by nota
Photo of stouty1


3.35/5  rDev -7.5%

re-review, 2/1/06
I tried another bottle of this tonight and used a pint glass this time. The head poured so thick, I had to make three pours. Dark creamy foam that never seemed to disappear. Beer still tastes like burnt malt, but I definitely am getting a better feel for this the second time around. I increased the drinkability from a 2.5, but everything remains the same.

I had a hard time getting a nice full head pouring it into my snifter. Wrong glass for this beer?? It dissapated rapidly to a small ring arond the rim. Appearance is definitely dark witha hint of red. Looks like any other average Porter.

Taste is a burnt maltyness. Leaves your mouth with a wetness that is not the normal effect I get from a Stout-like beer. Carbonation is nice. I cannot taste any chocolate, just a burnt sensation. I thought it was pretty tasty, in the beginning, but drinkability seems to be getting worse as I go.

02-02-2006 03:40:50 | More by stouty1
Photo of ism

New Jersey

3.4/5  rDev -6.1%

Nearly opaque dark brown with ruby hues, topped by a 2-finger tan head, low retention, little and spotty lacing. Roasted malts impart coffee and chocolate notes, with a touch of hop freshness. Good carbonation precedes a thin body, mostly malt with astringency and an odd metallic graininess as it develops. Goes down smooth with more of the astringency emerging.

Tasty at the beginning but too odd, and gets worse as the glass empties. A little too watery for the style, as well.

01-31-2006 02:53:46 | More by ism
Photo of hanco005


4.22/5  rDev +16.6%

Got this as part of my Microbrew of the Month club. 12 oz bottle into a pint glass

A—deep, dark brownish, black color with ½ inch creamy tan foam head

S—strong coffee and caramel malts, very fragrant with some mocha aroma as well, mild sweet smell

T—big and strong coffee and cocoa flavors, malty as I expected, a nice bittersweet finish

M—smooth and creamy with mild carbonation

D—an excellent brew…to me, it is like drinking a cold espresso. Could drink several more as I really enjoy the coffee and cocoa combo.

01-30-2006 02:39:35 | More by hanco005
Photo of ChainGangGuy


3.33/5  rDev -8%

Appearance: Pours a clear dark brown with slight hints of garnet around the edges. Solid head, tan in color, with scattered, spotty lacing which soon dwindled away to a thin ring of bubbles around the glass.

Smell: Delicate aroma of dark chocolate, coffee, and roasted malts.

Taste: Light flavors of cocoa powder, sweet dark malts, coffee, and a few smokey notes, and coupled with a light hop and grain bitterness. Other than that, this beer finishes dry and with a decidedly metallic finish. Unfortunately, this porter is a bit watery; the flavors seem muted. I even left the beer sitting in my mouth for a few minutes, waiting for flavors to magically emerge. Regrettably, this doesn't work.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin and fairly carbonated.

Drinkability: A nice, simple, eminently tolerable porter. What more could you ask for?

01-29-2006 07:24:44 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of Jredner


3.35/5  rDev -7.5%

I love the British Broadcasting Company so I was delighted to see they also brewed, but you’d think they’d be based out of London and not Kentucky oh well.. Roasted coffee beans aroma. Brown/black with a frothy head. Chocolate malt and some unexpected tobacco tinged flavor. Not a bad flavor just a little unexpected. A very nice sipping beer that finishes well.

01-24-2006 16:22:07 | More by Jredner
Photo of NClifestyle

North Carolina

3.35/5  rDev -7.5%

got this in a trade from brent (thanks).

pours up a very dark, almost black color, thick off-white head of foam with a chunky top and large bubbles. ruby highlights around the edge, sheets of lace, a layer of foam stays atop the beer.
smell is pretty great. similar to chocolate milk with toffe and coffee. i like.
taste is not quite up to the smell. very malty, but slightly astringent, somewhat grainy after the coffee flavor. the front of the mouth is ok, pretty good, actually. in the back is where the problems begin.
creamy, medium mouthfeel. almost no carbonation. nice.
drinkability would be higher without the rough tang in the back of the beer. if it's hops, it's a hop i haven't come across, and i don't like it in my porter, thank you very much.


01-21-2006 02:32:08 | More by NClifestyle
Photo of xtacyturbo

West Virginia

3.2/5  rDev -11.6%

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into an imperial pint glass, served at about 45 degrees.

Dark Star pours a very dark brown, almost black. At first it was topped with a half-inch thick creamy head that quickly settled to a foamy ring.

The aroma- roasty toasty, smells of roasted malts and coffee, with a hint of unsweetened cocoa- and not much else.

Taste-wise, just roasted, roasted, roasted. Very dominant flavor of roasted malts. Not much hint of coffee or chocolate at all, and not much hop flavor either. Doesn't carry a very complex flavor; I swirled this one around in my mouth many times searching for something more, but it just wasn't there.

Dark Star hits the tongue with a prickly carbonation. It leaves a slick, wet feeling on the palate that I don't particularly like, and wasn't as dry as I had expected from the style.

It's quite drinkable when cold, but drinkability declines as it warms- a pattern opposite what I usually prefer. It's unfortunate that this happens, as when drinking a brew of this style I don't like to hurry.

While it sounds like I'm trashing it, Dark Star is fairly tasty, but not my top pick. Definitely better than your average beer, but there are many better choices out there. I was hoping for the best after finding this beer from my hometown of Louisville, but next time I think I'll try one of their other styles.

01-17-2006 05:02:13 | More by xtacyturbo
Photo of sulldaddy


4.1/5  rDev +13.3%

A bottle courtesy of kmpitz2.
I am pouring at room temp into a pint glass.
The beer pours a deep rich dark brown with only hints of mahogany at the edges of the glass. A creamy beige head of 1 cm foams up easily and clings to the sides of the glass as it recedes slowly to a sturdy surface layer.
The aroma is roasted malt predominantly with hints of chocolate and caramel as well. No hop presence that I can detect.
The first sip reveals a silky smooth body with fine yet tingly carbonation.
The flavor is similar to the nose, all malt. I get some sweet chocolate up front then roasted malt and some burnt caramel. The roasted flavor lingers on my palate for a bit. The beer is very easy to drink and I think I could down a few of these quite happily on any given nite. There is no hint of alcohol anywhere and the smoothness and good flavor make it a winner!

12-18-2005 21:33:23 | More by sulldaddy
Photo of swid


3.28/5  rDev -9.4%

Beer #7 (of 13) from my beer purchase in Indiana.

Bluegrass Dark Star Porter pours a (upon first glance) black color into my pint glass; when held up to the light, a dark brown/ruby color becomes evident. Atop the nearly (but not completely) opaque porter rests a 1", light brown head; this soon collapses down into a thick, soapy ring. Moderate carbonation and light lacing. The aroma is quite average: Chocolate and roasted coffee notes are present, as is a restrained "earthy" smell. That's it.

The taste is better than the smell, but not the appearance. The flavors seem to be a jumbled mix of dark chocolate, roasted coffee, toasted malts, and a mild floral bitterness; no one flavor dominates overall. Mouthfeel is quite light; the acidity of this beer combines with the lightness and fizziness of the mouthfeel to mount a small attack on the tongue. Finishes crisp, and leaves an acidic/coffee aftertaste.

This was my first beer from Kentucky; it started out with a great deal of promise once I poured it in the glass. However, I found myself liking it a bit less with each sip. I can't recommend it, given the large number of (in my opinion) better American stouts out there. However, as always, YMMV.

12-13-2005 03:16:15 | More by swid
Photo of dirtylou


3.58/5  rDev -1.1%

12oz single, hauled by kmpitz2

is this one named for the dead song or is that strictly a coincidence? either way...

appearance: dark, almost pitch black, maybe a ruby tint, just maybe...very light brown head and creamy lacing

smell: cocoa powder, roasted malts, some coffee bean, a dark fruitiness going on in the background, earthy

taste: burnt coffee, cocoa powder, dark roast, dark fruit, some mild hoppiness, toasted malts...somthing missing here i think

mouthfeel: not as creamy as i'd like

drinkability: pretty drinkable

11-20-2005 23:53:40 | More by dirtylou
Photo of nlmartin


3.33/5  rDev -8%

Served from the bottle into a pub glass.

Appearance: At first glance poured a perfect black; however, upon further looking definately had a ruby opaqueness. Minimal head that was colored off white.

Smell: The expected chocolates and coffees are pleasantly in place. Small amount of fruity goodness drifting in the background.

Taste: The expected chocolates and coffee are there along with a pleasant butter scotch taste.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: Somewhere between watery thin and light bodied. The buttery texture probably moves it towards light bodied. Maintains a sort of fizzy carbonation during drinking.

11-11-2005 18:55:31 | More by nlmartin
Photo of Morris729


3.53/5  rDev -2.5%

Pours a very dark brown, almost black, color with a tall pillowy tan head that coats the walls of the glass with sheets of lace as it recedes. Nose is chocolaty roasted malts along with a touch of earthy peat. Taste begins with sweet malt and burnt coffee followed by unsweetened dark chocolate and dusty cocoa. A mild herbal hop bitterness is present in the finish along with more of the same burnt coffee that was present upfront. Not great, but worth a try if you get the chance. Thanks to yakko for the sample!

11-06-2005 07:21:37 | More by Morris729
Photo of BEERchitect


3.75/5  rDev +3.6%

Being from the distribution area, this is a beer that I have enjoyed ofter, buy only lately found new appreciation. It's big on the roasted barley, chocolates, and coffee flavors. More subtle in the nutty, barley, and toffee flavors. The BBC 'Americanized' this style by loading it with hops--so much that the tan head shows a slightly greenish tint. It's aromas are what you'd expect from a very hoppy porter with slight acidity and bittering from grain or husks. It's moderately thick and creamy. Finishes quite dry, despite the big sugars. Has a slight metalic flavor and shows some roughness in the swallow.

09-16-2005 12:55:27 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of goodbyeohio


2.48/5  rDev -31.5%

courtesy of BiF 18 and lackenhauser

thick brown pour with no head or lacing. aroma smells like a mix between dirt and grass... some sweaty aromas and a bit of maltiness to go along with all the weirdness. tastes better than it smells, although it has a very penny-like aftertaste. in the foreground are light notes of roasted malt and european hops. a little too crisp and bubbly for my tastes, and overall too light for me as well. not a beer i'd revisit. maybe a bad bottle, but ill have to see this on tap in order to attempt a rereview.

08-26-2005 15:05:54 | More by goodbyeohio
Photo of Fish113d


3.55/5  rDev -1.9%

Pouring slightly chilled into a tulip glass, this one pours a dark brown to black color with a cream-colored edge layer allowing no light to pass through the glass. Nothing very different or special about how it looks to me.

Aroma is some roasted coffee malts, along with some slight vanilla and some chocolate or cocoa. Again, good aroma, but nothing too overly complex about this one.

Taste is of a slight roasted malt, along with some chocolate, but on the swallow, the flavor changes to a rather musky light aftertaste.

Highly carbonated with a thin body, this yields decent flavor (nothing special, but decent), and a nice aftertaste. Seems just like a basic porter to me that's easy to drink and decently flavored, but just ordinary.

08-01-2005 14:55:34 | More by Fish113d
Photo of bceaglejoe


3.98/5  rDev +9.9%

Purchased at the Bluegrass Brewing Company bar at Louisville's Standiford International Airport. Poured into a traditional pint glass.

Presentation: The beer poured a dark brown, almost black, color into the glass. It was totally opaque. There was an off-white head with decent retention, but it wasn't great. The top of the beer became rather flat as I continued to drink it. The scent was dominated by roasted malts and coffee, with a little bit of caramel. It enveloped my nose very well. It was about par for the course as American Porters go.

Tasting: The most prominent taste in this beer was coffee. The roasted malt characteristics, noted in the scent, were also very strong, particularly towards the middle and back of the tongue. It had a slightly smoky flavor at the end, combined with a small amount of bitterness. There was also a bit of chocolate flavor. It was a medium-bodied beer with no alcohol harshness as it rolled across my tongue. As a Porter, it was an easy-drinking, (presumably) low-alcohol beer that would be suitable for a session or for pairing with food. It lends itself to deep, "quaffing" sips.

I liked this American Porter because it represented the style very well. I would like to have this again sometime.

08-01-2005 04:33:04 | More by bceaglejoe
Photo of drunkensailor


2.38/5  rDev -34.3%

from the bottle to a mug, fairly aggressive pour. Dark black color with a thick caramel creamy foam, visible flecks of something, makes me excited, 9reminds me of a few great barley wines). Light in the aroma, but did catch a bit of roasty sweetness, can't tell of what though. Taste is all right, notice a few subtleties to it (coffee, chacolate?) but the beer is a bit watery, not as thich and full bodied as the appearance would suggest. I've heard bad things about BBC from a few folks, so this is the first one of thier brews I've tried. I would say that while not the best porter, it was an enjoyable drink, and I'm now going to plan an outing of my other brew brethren to check out what else they have in store. I'll let you know ....

07-08-2005 03:52:18 | More by drunkensailor
Photo of karengarys


3.53/5  rDev -2.5%

pours dark leaving a bit of a carmel color head.

Smells malty, dark chocolatey.

Tastes like dark chocolate and hop. It is slightley watery, though.

Mouthfeel isn't bad, slightly creamy but also thin and wet.

Finish is a bit bitter, but dry.

This isn't a bad porter, but it seems a bit thin to me, and not quite as robust as I would like. Give it a whirl anyway.

06-19-2005 01:39:17 | More by karengarys
Photo of bruachan

District of Columbia

3.88/5  rDev +7.2%

my server gave me a to-the-brim pour but the guy next to me at the bar was drinking the same thing and had a nice head with some great lacing. deep, dark, but not opaque, with some garnet hues. i didn't get much an aroma since the head was nonexistant, but what did come through was decent

a little thin on the tongue, so the flavors were not concentrated. still a nice session porter, though

04-11-2005 17:00:08 | More by bruachan
Photo of WesWes

New York

4/5  rDev +10.5%

The beer pours a deep dark black color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a nice, earthy black malt scent that is roasted and dry. There is also some hop aroma as well. The taste is good. It has a smooth and rich patent and roasted malt flavor that goes down with ease and finishes dry and earthy. It has a slightly bitter aftertaste. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate/good carbonation. This is a fine American porter. It has good aroma and taste; an excellent sessions ale.

04-08-2005 00:30:14 | More by WesWes
Dark Star Porter from Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's
82 out of 100 based on 209 ratings.