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Snowstorm 2009 - August Schell Brewing Company

Snowstorm 2009Snowstorm 2009

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

66 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 66
Reviews: 59
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 8.93%

Brewed by:
August Schell Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Buebie on 10-26-2009)
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Ratings: 66 | Reviews: 59 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Duff27


3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown/black with a small tan head that leaves a collar. Minimal lacing left.

Slight roastiness with oxidation written all over it.

Chocolate notes although oxidation is setting in. Licorice. Very spot on for the style I'd say. Would guess at a 7%abv.

Very smooth mouthfeel with just enough carbonation.

I guess it didn't realize this was so skimpy on the ABV when I set it aside for 2.5 years. Regardless it still was drinkable and enjoyable, though I can't say how much longer you're going to want to keep a full one around.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2012 03:06:37 | More by Duff27
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

thick dark brown, looked black to be honest but if you held it up to the light some very nice ruby tinted notes came out. Nice tan colored head settled back pretty quickly and left a thin veil of lace across the top throughout the rest of the session. Decent amount of side glass lace as well could be observed.

The aroma wasa little light, and full of alcohol, but hell its almost 10% right? Decent roasted malt nose with hints of licorice, and maybe raisin, something with a touch of fruit tartness in there. Hint of chocolate way in the back as well. The flavor was dominated by the alcohol, though it was not overbearing at all, rather just coming through very full. Lots of roasted malts, hints of dark earthy tones and a hint of bitter chcolate. Almost a smokey feel to it. Nice medium bodied ale, alot lighter then I thougt it would be, but still very nice.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2011 06:23:08 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of biteme398


3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a mug.
The head is small and fades quickly while the body is an almost impenetrable black with shades of amber around the edges. Smell is of fruit and some darker malts. Taste has a solid backbone of hops that everything else is built around. Also in the taste is some chocolate, fruitiness and some maltiness that rounds out the profile. Mouthfeel is somewhat creamy and carbonation is fairly low. A very solid beer overall.

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2011 05:41:48 | More by biteme398
Photo of bamadog


4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I received this bottle in a trade a while back, I think from MPLS, but I can't be sure. Review is from notes taken on 9/26/2010 and poured from the bottle to a snifter.

Appearance: Pour is darkest brown, near black and starts with a 1/2 finger of creamy tan head that fades to nothing other than a thin, cloudy wisp and thin ring around the surface; body is nearly opaque and only has a couple of dark cola-like highlights; only a few spots of lacing and transparent oily residue.

Smell: Really a fantastic and big, robust smell -- dark and syrupy chocolate covered cherries; some charred woodiness and some semblance of a sweet vanilla; bit of a smokey/mulchy/peaty scent.

Taste: Really matches the smell to a "T" -- the beer really does remind me of bitting into a chocolate covered cherry with the nice dark chocolate and sticky syrup that comes with them; mild roasty and burnt maltiness lies behind the initial burst of flavors and offers just enough bitter balance; just a touch of alcohol and smokey peat as it continues to warm.

Mouthfeel: Body is a little thinner than I would like, but still I would consider it to be of medium weight; carbonation is solid and still comes across fairly soft in the mouth; a thin semi-dry coating is left on the roof of the mouth and the belly is left a little warm.

Drinkability: Not bad -- I really love the smell and the flavors are super solid; I do wish it was a little bit thicker and the ABV may catch up after a bit (even though it's only 5.8%, it feels like more for some reason), but I really consider this a treat to have tried this beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2010 01:11:02 | More by bamadog
Photo of psychotia


3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle w/ best-by date: 5/01/10

A: Slightly transparent black. Nice, 1.5 finger light tan head after pour, settled to a thin lace throughout.

S: Subtle (probably amped fresh) roasted malt, caramel.

T: Chocolate, caramel, and a slightly roasted. Tasty!

M: Not super thick, but not thin... I'd say a little creamy - it feels nice going down!

D: I would love to put a few of these back in the cold winter months!

I may have to get a few more of these to put back this upcoming holiday season - I didn't try this last winter, but I will say it tastes great 4 months after the best by date!

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2010 22:55:04 | More by psychotia
Photo of pdoran10


4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

nice appearance as i pour into my tulip glass. two fingers of white head. not much staying power with only a hint of lacing.

smell is a nice crips mocha with a touch of hop bite.

taste follows the smell closely. delicious dark chocolate, some roasted malt. finishes with a nice hop bitterness. very impressive taste.

mouthfeel is thin for a baltic porter with moderate carbonation.

a nice tasty big porter. body is thin but im not minding that much.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2010 23:17:23 | More by pdoran10
Photo of dstc


3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with a big, foamy tan head. Head falls slow but stays. Nice lace.

Aroma is actually a bit thin. Roasted malts is all there is but it's mild.

Nice roasted malt taste. Bit of sweetness and a hint chocolate.

Medium bodied to full and mildly carbonated.

Not a bad beer. Nothing spectacular but worth trying.

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2010 15:04:09 | More by dstc
Photo of Tballz420


3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Medium size khaki head, good amount of lace. Even without holding directly to the light, some slight brown hues come through the jet black body. Creamy chocolate malt nose. Chocolate malt taste, but thats fairly subdued somehow. Dark fruit along with a spicy alcohol actually come through before the main malt flavor. Creamy soft feel, fairly wet as well. Interesting for sure, worth a taste

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2010 05:03:49 | More by Tballz420
Photo of WVbeergeek


4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bargain bin at Bocktown treating me nicely this and a Smuttynose Winter. I see a dark nearly opaque colar with brown higlights to it. Lage mocha tan head forming thick lucious foam action above the rim of my glass. Aromatics come coreect with dark roasted cocoa and coffe accents a nice warming presence about it. Flavor has chocolate, cocoa, raisins, a touch of sugar and cream coated tones with some mild coffee finished tree bark accents. This is a wild winter Baltic porter lagered for sure to style, it's slight fruity but nice and roasty with a touch of light alcohol the only presence not felt that should be is the booze tones going around. Mouthfeel is creamy bodied moderate body and carbonation crazy sensation in a good way. I would like more of this in the future maybe not a back to back brew but this stuff is tasting good right now.

Serving type: bottle

04-11-2010 01:16:06 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of Tone


4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a black color. 1/3 inch head of a pale tan color. Decent retention and decent lacing. Smells of roasted malt, acidity, slight hop, slight sweet malt, and a hint of yeast. Fits the style of a Baltic Porter. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp with an average carbonation level. There is also a nice amount of acidity. Tastes of roasted malt, acidity, sweet malt, slight alcohol, and a hint of hop. Overall, a good mouth feel, body, blend, and aroma.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2010 02:04:31 | More by Tone
Photo of BuckeyeNation


3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark walnut with generous highlights of cherry and orange. Backlighting with an overcast sky reveals a lack of opacity. A vigorous pour generated nearly three fingers of caramel nougat colored foam that is responsible for the good score all by its lonesome. Scattered scraps of sudsy lace neither help nor hurt.

The nose opens up with warming, which it desperately needed to do. This winter release smells more like a standard American or English porter than a Baltic porter. There's a little chocolate and coffee... and not much else.

Snowstorm 2009 is decent beer, something that is true for most of August Schell's lineup. It's unfortunate that they decided to call it a Baltic porter (at only 5.8%, no less) because that tends to change expectations and to raise the bar a bit. The fact that it doesn't smell, taste or drink like the stated style cannot be ignored.

The somewhat skimpy malt backbone delivers bittersweet chocolate, cold coffee and dark caramel. No molasses, no brown sugar and no anise. There is a fair amount of contrasting hoppiness (even as Spring approaches), which allows the drinkability score to be bumped. The hops taste generic, like Magnum or Willamette or something along those lines.

The mouthfeel doesn't come close to being big enough for the stated style... although I've given up thinking of the beer in those terms. It's barely medium for an American porter and is satisfactorily bubbled.

Schell's Snowstorm 2009 is a pretty good drinker for fans of the brewery, but that's as far as it goes. Some beers in this series end up as regular (or at least seasonal) releases. Although it's enjoyable enough, I won't be on tenterhooks waiting to find out what ASBC decides.

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2010 13:11:05 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of FreshmanPour77


4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed 02-23-10
Reviewed cold from a bottle to a glass

A - Thick dark coffee color, 1 finger of foam present and since it is so dark that I couldn't tell how much carbonation is showing through. It looks though at the head of the brew that there is quite a bit present

S - Heavy malt aroma, chocolate and coffee bean notes mixed with a little licorice and hops

T - Medium bodied even though I could smell some heavy hitting chocolate and coffee notes. Can however really taste the licorice,

M/D - Pretty tasty porter from Schell. Medium bodied with a good amount of chocolate and coffee flavor with the licorice lurking about. Not a brew I can drink a lot of in one sitting but glad I tried it and recommend grabbing some before it is gone

Serving type: bottle

02-24-2010 19:03:25 | More by FreshmanPour77
Photo of mynie


4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a little cold for a porter, but it's not like you can blame me for chilling it since it doesn't list its style on the bottle.

Pours dark. Real, real dark. Glugs out. Medium head that dies quickly, but the opacity makes up for it.

Smells cold... I let it warm up, and it smells thick, bready, bittersweet and inviting.

Tastes like a Baltic motherfucking Porter. Goodness me. Dark fruit starts things out, lightly vinous, plums and raisins and apricots. This moves into a smaller, dyer middle that's more standard for a porter this size, and it ends on a cross between the very light alcohol burn of an RIS and linger dry sweetness of a good American porter. Holy hell. That's an awful lot of good for a beer this size.

Absolutely did not expect so much flavor out of this little fellow, especially since sixers only cost 6 bucks. If you can still find it, grab it.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2010 01:23:27 | More by mynie
Photo of jwc215


4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to morimech for this!

031110 on neck - I assume that's the freshness date...

Pours very dark brown with ruby/garnet hues. A thin tan creamy head stays. Dotted lacing, then strands of lacing as it progresses, stick.

The smell is of roasted coffee, chocolate, licorice and earthy notes.

The taste is of mildly roasted coffee, bittersweet chocolate, anise/licorice and caramel. An earthy undertone keeps it from being too sweet. It has a clean lager smoothness and finish. The body is medium-to-full.

It has a well-hidden, modest abv for the style. Sweetish, but balanced. This is a nice interpretation of a traditional Baltic Porter! Very enjoyable!

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2010 18:15:36 | More by jwc215
Photo of Tiklmelmo


4.08/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Nearly black with translucent mahogany around the edges when held to the light. Not a lot of head to it, even though it was poured fairly vigorously. But, a noticable amount of bubbles.

S - Tobacco smoke, charred wood, and maybe some licorice? Lot of roasty flavors in the aroma. Some hazelnut as well.

T - Dark roasted malt, tastes of chicory, with a nice nutty hazelnut flavor. Some fruity notes...black cherries, but no sweetness of note.

M - Medium bodied, moderate carbonation. Not quite thin, but by no means thick. But, for 5.8% it's a pretty big beer.

D - I was surprised to see a Baltic Porter with only 5.8%, so this is a bit more drinkable than I'd expected.

Not quite was I was expecting based on the genre, but I'm not disappointed. Considering there's 27" of snow on the ground outside, I think it's a good pick!

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2010 04:18:37 | More by Tiklmelmo
Photo of rhoadsrage


4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a snifter)
A- This beer pours a jet black dense body with a faint red glow and a thin ring of tan head that last for a few sips. There is a tiny carbonation that slowly glides up the sides of the glass.
S-This beer has a dark roasted malt aroma that is followed by a cold but not stale coffee aroma.
T- The smooth roasted dark flavor has an inky quality with a raisin finish. There is a very slight tartness to the slightly sweet finish and a faint cola note that becomes more pronounced as the beer warms.
M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a slippery texture and no alcohol heat noticed.
D- The nice roasted flavor are good but a bit muted with not much depth behind them. This is a nice dark winter beer good for quafting a pint or two.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2010 22:40:27 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of alexgash


4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle.

Dark cola brown body. Clean. Small, light sandy brown head. Minimal lacing. Some roasted malts on the nose, but even bigger notes of peat, dark chocolate syrup, cola, dates, and licorice.

Toasted, nutty malts up front quickly transition to sweetish, peaty, figgy flavors. Singed caramel, earthy tobacco, and semi-sweet chocolate lead the way to the finish. Lingering peat malt, mild herbal hop bitterness, and a touch of flavored coffee. Tasty! Medium-bodied with a nice creamy feel. A lighter, very sessionable Baltic porter, that I will miss when the six pack is gone!

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2010 23:45:00 | More by alexgash
Photo of kzoobrew


4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Mothman for this extra, Cheers Ben!

Deep Mahogany body, when held directly to the light the color appears to be a rather deep cherry. Body falls just short of opaque is direct light. Malted milk colored head stand just over one finger works its way back leaving a very slight cap perched atop. Thin sheet of lacing lines the perimeter of the nonic.

Dark malt and chocolate spearhead the aroma. Subtle fruity smells settle in, think dark fruit such as plum, fig or raisin. Molasses quality melds together the previously mentioned aromas. The more I smell the more I notice a light vanilla fragrance. A breadiness maybe slightly nutty malt aroma develops more as the brew warms.

Sweet caramel and chocolate flavors roll across the tongue. Mid-palate emerges more of the dark fruit flavors in combination with molasses. Raisin and plum with maybe the slightest dry dark cherry flavor gleaming through. Dry gritty coffee and spice flavor lingers on the tongue. Light earthy bitterness on the back end.

Medium body with a rather creamy texture. Mid level carbonation is certainly appropriate. The finish is dryer than anticipated while leaving the dry spice flavor lingering.

Solid beer from a brewery I am totally unfamiliar with. This would certainly be a good first impression. The beer was good all the way around but falls short of great. Very pleasant and easy to drink. Could easily enjoy multiples in a sitting.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2010 00:16:36 | More by kzoobrew
Photo of snaotheus


3.13/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a very dark reddish brown, with only a hint of head and no lacing. Smell is sweet with cherries and a little smoke, maybe some maple.

Taste is too sweet, some citrus in addition to the cherry. Very little bitterness to balance out the sweetness, although there is some sour.

Mouthfeel is flat and filmy. Drinkability isn't terrible.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2010 04:09:02 | More by snaotheus
Photo of Mdog


3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark brown, good head.

Smell: Roasted smell, slight sweetness detected.

Taste: Roasted flavor, slight mocha-like sweetness, creamy mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Light enough to have several.

This year's Snowstorm is another winner. Not an overpowering or huge beer like some Baltic Porters, this is a more mild flavored beer that you can have several of in a sitting.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2010 14:57:53 | More by Mdog
Photo of hardy008


4.38/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first beer of 2010. Pours a dark brown color with ruby highlights and a tan foamy head with decent retention. Smells of roasted malts with chocolate and coffee and some dark fruit. The flavor matches the aroma. Mildly sweet with dark fruit at the finish. Medium bodied, smooth and creamy. Nicely drinkable with proper carbonation. It's nice to have a Baltic Porter this good without the abv being so high.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2010 19:25:11 | More by hardy008
Photo of Stinkypuss


3.3/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

August Schell Snowstorm, poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. A dark brownish amber in color with a bit of lace.

Aroma comes off quite light just a whiff of chocolate malt.

Flavor consists of roasted malt and a lingering minerally bitterness. Light syrupy chocolate on the palate. A bit of clean alcohol is noted.

Mouthfeel is full bodied with chewey malt.

Drinkability is fine, an average example of a baltic porter that delivers the basics but doesn't surprise.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2009 13:50:14 | More by Stinkypuss
Photo of dfried


4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Almost black with some ruby and mahogany hues, a sudsy light brown head that keeps well as a cap. Sweet, malty, cocoa-ish aroma with notes of vanilla and a slight nuttiness. Roasty charred grain. More charred grain at first sip, along with anise. Dark fruits fold in as it finishes, and flavors similar to dried and candied pineapple and mango, possibly from the hops making an appearance. Dark chocolate sweetness and the anise are there throughout, with the fruity notes more apparent in the finish. The texture is rather smooth and creamy, not quite silky like a cream stout, but never harsh. A bit sticky on the lips.

Overall: medium bodied with strong but not overpowering flavors makes it quite drinkable. I love the candied fruit flavors. A fine, balanced winter warmer.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2009 07:42:47 | More by dfried
Photo of gford217


3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle courtesy of buebie poured into a tulip.

This one pours super dark brown, I'm almost tempted to say black, but not quite. It's got a small but very thick head that remains a cap for much longer than I expected and left very good lacing.

The aroma is highly roasted with black malts and some bakers chocolate coming through. There is some underlying molasses sweetness and licorice as well.

The taste has an initial sweetness from the caramelized sugars and dark chocolate, and the taste seems to be sweeter than the aroma in general. There are some roasted coffee hints in the background but it's not as prevalent as I was expecting.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied and extremely smooth. It's probably a little lighter than the best Baltic porters out there, but its very good, especially given the lighter ABV. Very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2009 03:46:41 | More by gford217
Photo of brewdoc75


4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoying this during a massive snowstorm. We are supposed to get 18 inches of snow with wind and ice. It's a good thing I stocked up for the holidays yesterday.

A: Dark brown with ruby and mahagony hues. Strong, everlasting, 1/2 inch off-white head with moderate carbonation.

S: Chocolate, hints of coffee and toffee aromas. Herbal and earthy hops.

T: Flavorful, yet subtle. Lots of light chocolate flavors. Some toffee and caramel. A hint of coffee here and there. The hops finish with a nice herbal component. The flavors are quite enjoyable and well balanced. I even get a hint of fruitiness, which is nice. The flavors go very well with the cold weather outside. The only downside is a that the alcohol is a bit subdued for the style.

M: Medium bodied and smooth. Finishes a bit velvety. Nice.

D: A very nice winter beer. Lots of flavors, but not too overpowering. Sessionable. Maybe they will keep this around a bit longer. We need more Baltic Porters.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2009 00:59:38 | More by brewdoc75
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Snowstorm 2009 from August Schell Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 66 ratings.