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Black Jack Porter - Left Hand Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Black Jack PorterBlack Jack Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

996 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 996
Reviews: 460
rAvg: 3.71
pDev: 11.86%
Wants: 34
Gots: 52 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
English Porter |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Slight malt Sweetness with notes of dark chocolate, espresso and herbal hops.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-16-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 996 | Reviews: 460 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Wasatch


3.9/5  rDev +5.1%

Thanks Csims

Pours a nice dark brown/black color, nice carbonation, nice small foamy tan head which lasts awhile, nice sticky lacing afterwards. The nose is of nice roasted sweet malts, toffee/caramel. The taste is very nice sweet/roasted malts, and toffee/caramel. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is an awesome little porter, highly recommended.

02-27-2007 01:31:11 | More by Wasatch
Photo of daliandragon

North Carolina

4.15/5  rDev +11.9%

This one's been chilling in the fridge for a few weeks but with the warmer weather on the way I'm trying to alleviate the glut of porters and stouts in there before spring arrives. Pours a thick dark brown with a nice cap of head and dense, sticky lace. Nose is a very pleasant coffee/milk chocolate melange with a little underlying dark fruit. Looking good.

Heavily roasted malt in the flavor with coffee tones and a small bit of tempering hop bitterness. Well balanced flavor matches themedium mouthfeel that sstarts carbonated and flattens out at the end, nicely rounding the prolonging the mellow aftertaste. Almost no hint of alcohol at all, which is impressive. A extremely sessionable and likable porter. I'll definitely look for this again.

02-23-2007 00:55:48 | More by daliandragon
Photo of Domingo


3.78/5  rDev +1.9%

Picked this up after hearing good things about it from a patron of the Falling Rock.
Pours a dark black color with a little bit of a brown highlight. At first glance it looks darker than most porters and it has a thickness that surprised me a bit, too. Head formed and settled pretty quickly, but a thin layer sticks around.
Smell is chocolate, smoke, and a little bit of sweetness. No hops that I can detect...but it IS a porter.
Taste also has a roasted quality. Dark chocolate and coffee are definitely there. Sweetness is kept to a minimum and it reminds me a little of Central American chocolate.
Mouthfeel's perfect for a porter. Not too thick to be drinkable, but not watered down and flat either.
Drinkability isn't too bad. I could have several of these in a row, but I would've liked a slightly sweeter malt. I think the sessionability of this beer would vary on my mood.
This is still a really good porter with a lot of dark roasted character. Probably the best I've had in the state.

02-21-2007 18:53:05 | More by Domingo
Photo of JohnnyM2002


3.53/5  rDev -4.9%

Sampled from a 12 oz bottle, poured into a red wine glass at 45 degrees. Picked up in a trade from csims - thanks!!

A - Poured a milk-chocolatey brown that seemed to thin out towards the end. Head was on the smaller side and left minimal lacing.

S - Sweeter aroma, focused around a malty backbone; supported by cocoa and toffee.

T - Sweetness carries over in the taste, but it dulled slightly by some biscuity tones...a little black cherry tartness detected. Maltiness holds strong throughout. Not as much of a dessert beer as I anticipated...might even go well with heavier meat meals.

M - Body was on the weaker side...felt thin and watered down. Dry finish.

D - Despite not being as heavy as most porters (or as rich), I still really enjoyed it. I drank it as more of an after-meal beer, but I wish I had consumed it during the meal instead. Not as expected, but still enjoyable.

02-04-2007 01:10:20 | More by JohnnyM2002
Photo of redstripe


3.53/5  rDev -4.9%

On draft at the Ginger Man in Fort Worth.

The beer pours a lovely, translucent dark chocolate. It's not quite black, but you couldn't read a newspaper through it. There is a thin, creamy head that dissipates almost immediately, leaving some lacing through the drink.

I couldn't really smell it where I was, even after a generous swirl. I guess I could have had a stuffy nose--but either way, the beer doesn't have that big of a smell. I got a little bit of coffee and sweet malt, but that was about it. Whatever smell there was was pleasant, just not impressive.

The taste is creamy and smooth. I tasted chocolate, malt and licorice. The aftertaste was earthy--very pleasant, but (like the smell) not overly impressive. I don't remember the alcohol content, but it seemed pretty low, so it is a very drinkable beer.

I like porters, but they are not my favorite style--I could see how this could be a session beer for people that really favor porters.

02-03-2007 20:15:25 | More by redstripe
Photo of Beeryce


3.65/5  rDev -1.6%

Alot of steely Munich malt aroma in nose with faint hint of chocolate malt and just a little floral hop accent. The chocolate malt becomes dominate with time and temp. Nice creamy light brown head with good retention produceing some laceing. The beer is dark brown in color, but amber-ruby and clear when held to light.

The taste is very nice, full bodied- malty and rich. The steely maltiness melds into the chocolate malt and again the hops, this time in the form of a slight bitterness, accents the overall taste. There is also more of a hop character to this porter due to the Magnum and U.S. Goldings used, making it more balanced and less malty. Not as roasty as alot of Porters, but is more true to the Engish Porter style with a complex balance of young and old flavours. Very complex with differnet flavours in every sip as the beer warms. Mouthfeel also fits the beer itself and style well. Drinkability is good as well.

02-01-2007 02:54:44 | More by Beeryce
Photo of Erdinger2003


3.88/5  rDev +4.6%

Rougly pours a nice big head, with a black color. The smell is soooo good, it has the smooth roasted malts that actually remind me of a Breakfast Stout. The taste is even smoother with chocolately roasted coffee malts that are just great!! The mouthfeel is pretty good, no bumps, but it is a medium bodied porter, still pretty good though. Overall I will go back and buy a bunch of this...very good!!

01-26-2007 12:07:41 | More by Erdinger2003
Photo of IntriqKen


3.55/5  rDev -4.3%

Pours very black for a stout....half finger off white head that melts to a solid ring of off white foam.
Aromas are toasted malt.
Flavor is sweet toasted malt with a little bit of smoke. A little hint of dark fruits. Sweeter than most stouts I am used to. Hint of chocolate..milk chocolate in the taste.
Aftertaste is smoked malt and burnt sugars.
Mouthfeel is creamy without being cloying or sticky
Interesting stout...first english stout I've had so I will rate based upon enjoyment.

01-13-2007 07:55:06 | More by IntriqKen
Photo of RedChrome


3.68/5  rDev -0.8%

A deep brown colored beer with garnet highlights. Quater inch white head vanished almost instantly. Lots of tiny, barely visable carbonation bubbles rising.

Very strong malt aroma. A nice dark fruit aroma shifted from plums to red grapes and back. Additional subtle notes of chocolate gave this the sweetness it needed to balance out the minor hint of hops.

A very nice spiced plum flavor was quite strong on the tongue. A surprising treat as the flavor shifted into a licorice taste on the tongue. Very pleasing sweet flavors in this one.

Slightly watery thickness. A nice light tingling of carboantion on the edges of the tongue.

A very nice porter. Great beer to wash down roasted pork with rice and beans. A decent effort, and well worth a try if you can pick up a bottle at your local store or bar.

01-06-2007 03:01:52 | More by RedChrome
Photo of SuperSpy


3.85/5  rDev +3.8%

A - This beer is a very deep ruby color. The light-tan head grew to about 1 inch on the initial pour then died down to a nice foam cap while leaving behind some decent lacing. A very good looking beer.

The initial aroma is fairly sweet, with some notes of chocolate and roasted grain. Very nice but far too subtle.

Almost creamy as it rolls over the tounge, the flavor is a deep, rich blend of sweet dark malts. Chocolate, a hint of roast, cocoa and a somewhat dry finish rounds out this full-bodied beer. The carbonation is good, and adds a layer of crispness.

I could drink a few of these in one sitting. There is a great deal of flavor without it being too strong, and it's just heavy enough to be full-bodied, though not thick or chewy.

01-05-2007 03:26:36 | More by SuperSpy
Photo of beveritt


4.55/5  rDev +22.6%

Presentation: Poured from a 12oz brown bottle into an Imperial pint glass. Bottle says bottled on 8-30-06; why can't more breweries do that? Label depicts a Jack of clubs holding a mug of beer in his left hand, very cool label.

Appearance: Pours with just over a one inch, off-white, creamy head. This falls, leaving lacing behind on the sides and a layer of foam. The beer itself is just barely see-through. A nice, dark mahogany color.

Smell: Amazing smell. It is so strong I can smell it sitting in the glass on my desk while I am typing about its appearance! Strong roasted barley, one of the freshest barley smells I have experienced. It smells like the roasted barley as I crush it to throw it in the mash. A little hint of sweetness.

Taste: A fair amount of carbonation bite upfront. A very small hint of sweetness, followed by a pretty mellow bitterness. The barley is definitely present, but not overly strong.

Mouthfeel: As mentioned earlier, decent level of carbonation. Seems a little high at first, but you get used to it and it seems like the right level for this beer.

Drinkability: I got to say, I am very impressed with this porter, one of the best I have had. I could see drinking this all day as you unload the ships.

12-14-2006 02:25:33 | More by beveritt
Photo of BanjoGasmic


3.58/5  rDev -3.5%

Aroma: Rich, full of toffee, caramel and chocolate, with a bit of breadiness and dark, syrupy fruit. Otherwise low esters and no hops in aroma. Somewhat earthy in character.

Appearance: Very deep garnet-brown, but clearly not black. Speaking of clarity, this beer is brilliant, with no haze whatsoever. Medium to low tan head, w/ mixed bubbles.

Flavor: Delivers what the aroma promises. Dominated by soft, whole-tongue chocolate roastiness, smoothed over by caramel sweetness. Balance leans towards the malt, but hop bitterness is there for balance and it plays well with the roasted-grain. This beer coats the tongue and the flavor evolves well after the glass is empty, begging you to drink another.

Mouthfeel: Thick but not heavy, with moderately low carbonation. This fills the mouth, but part of that sensation comes from the fullness/richness of flavor, not necessarily body. No astringency.

Overall: Nice and simple, this beer doesn't try to innovate or impress. My only complaint is with the full mouthfeel, which seems a bit full even for a robust porter. I do love the balance between the sweetish start, and the bitterness that lingers into the finish. I think I'll have another.

12-14-2006 01:25:38 | More by BanjoGasmic
Photo of TexIndy


3.83/5  rDev +3.2%

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle with a brewed on date on the front label. Color was black unless held right to a light where it was a deep, deep mahogany. Had about 2 fingers of brownish foam that evaporated to a thin head and lacing during the drink. The smell was really off on this one for what I expected. Not sure if something happened during shipment but it a really strange aroma that I couldn't identify. Even had the wife who is good at picking out smells try it and she said "ugh - that's awful". In the background, I could smell the coffee and chocolate malts but overpowered by the other. I'll rate a 3 as a mix of what I got (1) and what others have said (4). The mouthfeel was pretty good but a little on the watery side. The taste was excellent. A year ago, I wouldn't drink a porter if offered but I've really developed a taste for them lately. Overall, another outstanding beer from Left Hand who are quickly becoming one of my favorite breweries. Highly recommend. (4.0, RR, T,Y)

12-12-2006 00:39:42 | More by TexIndy
Photo of jasonjlewis


4/5  rDev +7.8%

Nice brew, Good initial head that stays for a while, but not until the last drop.

Smell is rich with chocolate malts.

Taste is chocolate malty, with a faint bitterness.

This beer is crisp and full bodied.

This is one easy to drink brew. I'm glad I have some more to drink in this cold weather.

12-06-2006 04:35:25 | More by jasonjlewis
Photo of froggyfrog


3.1/5  rDev -16.4%

12 oz. bottle served in a bubbled Coke glass that we'll call a nonic pint.

Appearance is spot-on. The beer looks jet black until held up to the light where it turns a mottled translucent red. Sitting on top is a respectable head, microfiber eggshell gray in color.

This beer smells absolutely fantastic. Its got hand whipped buttercream icing, toffee and thick roasted barley in the mix.

The taste is a bit of a disappointment, especially after the excellent smells. It seems very acidic. It's hard to pick out any real flavors other than thin stale grain with a sort of vegetable finish.

Mouthfeel at first seems decent for the style but the acidic sensations quickly turn this beer thin and bitey.

After a very promising start, this beer kind of went to tasting like a watery tea made from dried hay. Glad for the chance to have tried this but I can't recommend this beer based on this bottle.

11-12-2006 06:52:51 | More by froggyfrog
Photo of beals


4.28/5  rDev +15.4%

Appearance: Big brown head. Deep brown color w/touches of red; slightly translucent.

Smell: Coffee and roasted nuts.

Taste: Roasted, almost burnt at the end. Sweet and malty to start, finishes dry with a belly-warming alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, with no carbonation bit until the end. Full body, but not heavy or chewy.

Drinkability: Best porter I've had so far this year. Doesn't try to overdo it with the coffee/roasted flavors. Glad I have a couple more of these left.

11-10-2006 21:14:26 | More by beals
Photo of slyke


3.93/5  rDev +5.9%

Black Jack Porter pours dark red (almost black) with a tan head that sticks and laces well.

The aroma is a combination of chocolate and coffee.

The taste also is a combination of chocolate and coffee with the chocolate notes more prevalent in the taste.

Mouthfeel is pretty creamy, better than average.

This beer is very drinkable for the sippers among us. I will slowly finish this sample in the name of "research" and/or pure enjoyment.

11-07-2006 00:22:45 | More by slyke
Photo of dogfooddog


3.05/5  rDev -17.8%

dark ruby-red beer pours clear with large head. served 50f.

Nose is slightly roasted malt, more like what I would expect from an amber beer.

taste is a bit more heavy on roasted notes, a bit sweet and some chocolate-like afternotes in the taste. that said, this beer is short on tasteat the serving temperature. will let it warm up a bit....

a few degrees does help some, but once again the taste itself is so subdued I cannot think of any reason to seek this beer out. I find myself straining to distinguish the different parts of it, but it is like someone turned the volume down to just near 1.

Oh well, their stouts are very nice, but this porter is a pass.

11-05-2006 01:24:25 | More by dogfooddog
Photo of tgbljb


4.38/5  rDev +18.1%

Poured a deep brown color with reddish highlights. Bountiful lacing noted.
Smell is an enticing mixture of roasted malt, coffee, and bitter chocolate.
Taste matches the smell and adds a mild dryness that perfectly compliments the malt.
Full and creamy in the mouth , with a nice long-lingering taset sensation.
Perfect drinkability. An excellent beer.

11-03-2006 01:02:03 | More by tgbljb
Photo of pmcadamis


3.63/5  rDev -2.2%

Slightly translucent chestnut brown brew with a 1/4 finger bubbly head. A swirl brings the head up a bit, and small wet arches of lace are left on the glass.

Chocolate and roasted coffee beans hit the nose first, along with vanilla caramel, and nuts. There is also a chocolate liquor alcohol presence that becomes a bit too strong as the beer warms.

Tastes like coffee and chocolate (very much like it smells). Supporting notes of vanilla bean and caramel. Very roasty and nutty also.

Smooth and medium bodied, this is very drinkable. This is complex enought to be sipped and savored, but light and enjoyable enough to be enjoyed with food or as a session brew.

10-26-2006 14:53:59 | More by pmcadamis
Photo of BeerSox


3.8/5  rDev +2.4%

12oz bottle into mug.

Nearly opaque black with a light tan frothy head. Large bubbles in the center, also has good retention. Thick sticky lacing all the way down the glass.

Rich with roasty malts and a sweet chalky molasses scent.

Chewy roasty malts with light carbonation, giving it a smooth taste. Light creamy chocolatey flavors mix with the slightly dry finish. Lots of slightly bitter malt tastes in the finish.

Overall good beer. The taste was a bit grainy and chalky, but it still held its own. I recommend you try this one at least once.

10-25-2006 04:29:51 | More by BeerSox
Photo of Pegasus


4/5  rDev +7.8%

Appearance: Clear deep amber brown, except for highlights, appears black. The modest off-white head retains well, the lacing is thick, scattered, and broken.

Aroma: Deep aroma of bitter chocolate and cocoa and lesser coffee, with earthy notes and a faint herbal hop presence..

Taste: Rich roasty flavor at the open, followed by lingering bitter cocoa and and espresso notes, finishes with a lingering earthy note.

Mouth feel: Smooth, rich, and very full.

Drinkability/notes: In my estimation, a very well made porter, some of the other reviews diverged fairly sharply from mine, perhaps the recipe has recently been reformulated? Well worth a try, in my opinion.

Presentation: Packaged in a twelve ounce brown glass bottle, served in a standard pint tap glass.

09-05-2006 01:02:00 | More by Pegasus
Photo of kirok1999


4/5  rDev +7.8%

A- Pours a very dark brown, almost black. Thin light head leaves little lacing.

S- Sweet black malts, some caramel, smoke and charcoal.

T- Malts dominate, sweet and dry. Definite smoky quality and a bitter coffee/chocolate finish.

M- Smooth and creamy, crisp and dry.

D- Very nice porter. Nothing over the top but very well done for the style.

09-04-2006 20:57:46 | More by kirok1999
Photo of Oxymoron


3.78/5  rDev +1.9%

Everyone loves a 21, except when it’s the dealer. Pours a mostly black color with light rustic hues around the edge. Rather dark for a porter. Decent head and limited lacing. The smell is very sweet per style, with a coffee and rich chocolate aroma. Overall a good nose. Some sudsy and a light yeast scent at the back end.

The taste is more prominent which a good malt backing. A more chocolate and noticeable latte flavors up front. There is a richness that leaves a creamy flavor as well. This leaves very light to a light astringency that could have be more prominent. There is a slight bready almost toast like quality at the end for a good finish.

The body is between mid to full. Carbonation is light but somewhat masked by the smooth texture. Overall a good porter but not something I would bet the house on.

08-26-2006 19:23:44 | More by Oxymoron
Photo of gunnerman


3.4/5  rDev -8.4%

Pours a blackish red color with a 1 inch fluffy head. Smell is very faint but a I smell some roasted peanuts in the mix. The taste is a a very unbalance hoppy/roasted character, it actually reminds me of roeasted grasshoppers that I had before. This is a decent offering from Left Hand, that I had in the moutain mixer.

08-02-2006 23:46:16 | More by gunnerman
Black Jack Porter from Left Hand Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 996 ratings.