Smoke Jumper Smoked Imperial Porter - Left Hand Brewing Company
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Ratings: 519 | Reviews: 237 | Display Reviews Only:
4.85/5 rDev +20.9%
Appearance: Pours an espresso brown color with a nice tan head that drops quickly to a murky film and fails to deliver much in the lacing department
Smell: Dark chocolate with undertones of smoke, molasses and fruity hops
Taste: Starts with a surprisingly sweet milk chocolate flavor with subtle hints of smoke that build through mid-palate; after the swallow, the smoke flavors burst forth and dominate the finish along with a bit of fruity bitterness; sweet chcolate flavors linger on the tip of the tongue
Mouthfeel: Full-bodied and somewhat creamy; with foamy carbonation
Drinkability: Just a superb example of a smoked beer that blends the sweetness with the smoke to craft a real treat; easily the best Left Hand beer I have tasted
07-17-2007 23:13:48 | More by brentk56
4.18/5 rDev +4.2%
Appearance - pours a dark, shadowy red, best viewed with a good back light. The best show this Michelob Specialty glass has ever profferred. Full two fingers of mocha coverage. It calms down to a thin but full blanket and doesn't drop below that for a good while. Good lacing around the glass, giving a little rise to the rim foam but doesn't really stick.
Aroma - a full blast of smokiness right away. I haven't smelled a beer this smoky since Schlenkerla. The head takes a while to settle but when it does I pick up some great hot fudge/dark chocolate aromas.
Taste - heavy charcoal flavor, burnt coffee beans, charred ribs. As the ashes clear off my palate, there are some roasty non-flamed flavors of chocolate and espresso. They can be a challenge to pick up before the aftertaste but if you wait a few seconds they'll show up. The hop bitterness around the swallow kind of prolongs the initial barrage but ultimately comes into its own just briefly before yielding to some (up to this point) well-hidden alcohol warmth. Needs to warm up a bit to be a better, smoother drink. An intensely smoked beer that is really good but takes a while to get accustomed to.
Mouthfeel - highly carbonated and gassy, and very smooth too. The body is moderately big, a good fit for what the flavor needs.
Drinkability - this is not a beer that you can just crack open anytime. It's good though. Mind the high abv, and if you have a tasting with some crafties this would make a good entry.
07-10-2007 19:34:16 | More by brewdlyhooked13
3.58/5 rDev -10.7%
Appearance: Pours a brown-black, near opague body with a diminishing, light brown head.
Smell: Abundantly smokey! Beyond the smokescreen, there's some roasted malts, rich caramel, dark chocolate, and smoked sausages.
Taste: Just a little too excessively smokey for me, as for me the imperial porter qualities are smothered under a blanket of smoke, sausages, and chimney sweepings. Sure, there's dark malts, caramel, French Roast coffee, and even some piney hops, but your tongue has to be ready to excavate it from beneath all the smoke.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Mild carbonation. Slight creaminess.
Drinkability: If you're looking for a smokey beer, than this brew will happily rub some salt into the wounds that such beers as Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Urbock and Alaskan Smoked Porter have begun to fester within you.
07-04-2007 04:36:34 | More by ChainGangGuy
4.5/5 rDev +12.2%
Licorice black with slim edges of red and gold. The amazingly frothy, caramel nougat colored crown filled most of the glass after the initial pour and is taking its sweet time losing altitude. As it does so, it deposits shredded sheets of thick lace. This is pretty much what an Imperial porter ought to look like, smoked or not.
Hell yeah! The aroma is right on the money as well. It's a near perfect marriage of chocolate malt, roasted malt and pungent smoke. Non-contributors to the nose include pale malt, wheat malt and the entire hop bill (Magnum and Mt. Hood). I hope the proportions are similar on the palate.
Wish granted. Smoke Jumper is great beer, there are no two ways about it. You have to like several bonfire's worth of smoke, though, or don't bother buying this big bottle. Although it isn't quite as rauchtastic as Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Urbock, it isn't far behind. For some reason, I'm not reminded of smoked meat so much as simple wood smoke. How many times can I use the word 'smoke' in one review?
Since Left Hand decided to brew a kick ass Imperial porter as the base beer, this is anything but a one-trick pony. Bittersweet chocolate is the dominant member of the flavor profile (after smoke, of course), with chicory coffee nipping at its heels. Smokin' mocha, Batman! I can't tell if the tantalizing tanginess is coming from the wheat malt (doubtful) or the hops (most likely).
At 67 IBUs, I would have thought that bitterness would play more of a role. It isn't until I get well into the midsection of the '750' that it occurs to me that this is a sneakily bitter beer. Hop flavor doesn't have much of a chance given what else is going on, but there's no question that the little green cones have not been forgotten.
Have I mentioned blackstrap molasses and anise yet? Talk about complex, multi-faceted beer. For some reason, my bottle indicates that the ABV is 10.5%, not 9.2%. It doesn't matter one bit, because it tastes like it's 7.5%. Only the blurring that I'm experiencing at the edges of my vision suggests that the listed ABV is accurate.
The mouthfeel doesn't come close to letting me down. Like every other attribute, it's the best of both worlds. It's full enough and creamy enough to warrant 'big beer' status, yet doesn't bog down in the mouth as some Imperials tend to do. I'll credit a masterful job of carbonation.
Smoke Jumper Smoked Imperial Porter is the best Left Hand Brewing Company beer that I've had yet. In fact, I think I like it better than their (also excellent) Imperial Stout. I appreciate the fact that this is 'the official beer of the National Smokejumpers Association', but I don't want anyone putting out the conflagration of flavor that occurs each time I upend the glass. This is wonderful beer.
07-02-2007 23:01:30 | More by BuckeyeNation
4.6/5 rDev +14.7%
Huge rocky head. Light-brown witha haed that's long lasting. Black color. Lots of great roasted aroma with mild coffee and chocolate. Smokiness is definitely present, but not overpowering. Lots of malt, as well. Lots of carbonation Not too overpowering smoke in the taste. Very smooth and I couldn't really taste the alcohol, but could feel it as it warmed up. It's been a while since I had an Alaska Smoked Porter, but would like to do a head to head comparison.
06-29-2007 18:51:12 | More by doubleipa
District of Columbia
4/5 rDev -0.2%
Appearance- Poured a very dark brown with light only coming in around the edges to reveal an amber hue. Had a foamy head that quickly dissipated into a thin layer. Nice lacing left behind after each sip.
Taste- Smoke, smoke, smoke from the first sip to the lingering aftertaste, which lasted for a good bit after I swallowed. The aftertaste was intense and very pleasurable. Reminded me of a good plate of BBQ.
Mouthful- Found this beer to be thinner than I expected, but not watery in the least.
Drinkability- The smokiness is very intense, from the first to last sip. Some might find this intolerable. I would compare this beer to a strong cigar, you must have a taste for it.
Overall- 750ml was a lot of this beer, I would consider trying this again in a smaller serving
06-23-2007 02:39:46 | More by eholde
4.47/5 rDev +11.5%
Thanks to Charles from the Carolina Brewmaster for sharing this with us at the Memorial Day BBQ. Tried with the pulled pork with hot mustard and BBQ sauce. Just an incredible complement to the food. Best beer I tried all night. From a corked and caged bomber, poured in a big-ass wine glass.Very dark with a frothy tan head that stays in the glass the whole time. Smlerss of roasted peat, but not too strong. Complex malts really comes out in the taste and finish. Perfectly balanced, can not tell the alcohol in this one. Best one for the style I have tasted, hands down.
[ serving type: bottle ]
05-28-2007 01:21:50 | More by Backer2004
3.33/5 rDev -17%
A - Poured an extremely dark brown, essentially black with a nice opaque color. Absolutly no head, lace, foam, bubbles, nothing, just looked a bit weak to be honest.
S - Smell was very heavy with the smoked presence, which is only to be expected. A slight hint of caramel or sugar could be picked up, but you really had to look for it.
M & T - Flat, no life to this at all and thin were my first impressions. Really no carbonation and slick and oily in feel. Suprised that there was actually a nice hoppy back which seemed to come out of nowhere. But the feel really distracted me and took big points away from this.
D - I really hope it was just a bad bottle, or else I would never even try this again. I had some high hopes, as I am generally a big fan of smoked beers, but this left me hanging, no thank you
05-24-2007 23:42:35 | More by mikesgroove
4.5/5 rDev +12.2%
Large bottle bought at Dennis Brothers Liquors just outside of Minneapolis, and this one was their suggestion.
Beautiful, pitch black with a plentiful tan head with a very nice retention and lacing.
The aroma is one of its high points, initially alcoholic, almost whisky-like, but additional waves include smoked wood, molasses and vanilla, plenty of roasted malts at all levels.
Taste is as suggested, warmingly alcoholic at times, with roasted malts, vanilla, bitter coffee and waves of more alcoholic warmth, and the taste lingers on your tongue for quite a while.
Smooth, velvety on the tongue, and still, despite all its power, it goes down dangerously easy.
A very nice beer, and a great suggestion from the guys at Dennis Liquors.
05-22-2007 14:16:30 | More by brdc
4.93/5 rDev +22.9%
Im splitting this bottle with Stopper at cellar temp. Pouring into a snifter the beer is jet black with a fluffy tan head of 2 cm foaming up easily. The head lingers as a thin surface layer throughout. Aroma is very smokey like cooking bacon on a campfire. Quite appealing. There is some chocolate and roast malt buried in there, but dominated by smoke. First sip reveals an average body with silky smooth texture. Flavor is brown sugar and molassess and quickly rolls to an ashy smoke and coffee ground bitterness. There is no detectable alcohol or hops that I can find. I really enjoy this beer and if you like smoked stuff, this is a must try!
05-19-2007 16:55:08 | More by sulldaddy
3.58/5 rDev -10.7%
Appearance - Dark brown with a dark beige head. Head was 75% of the mug. The head seemed to become it's own entity and budged only a bit to let the beer pour through a small tunnel at the bottom when the glass was tilted.
Smell - Light smokiness, could not smell anything else.
Taste - Thick roasted malts that got more smoky as I refilled my glass. Mold hops. Everything about this beer intensifies as it warms up.
Mouthfeel - Thick with a yeasty aftertaste.
Drinkability - Good brew.
Just one opinion - Almost a great brew, needs a little more touch up before it was bottled as a final product - or maybe I got a bad bottle. For $12 for a 750ml corked bottle, I expected a bit more.
05-04-2007 15:32:33 | More by SaltyLime
4.1/5 rDev +2.2%
750 ml. Bottle poured into a pint glass.
A: Dark brown in color with ruby red hues. Dense tan head poures three fingers thick and has excellent retention. Sticky lacing crawls all over the glass.
S: Smoke. Roasted coffee bean. Dark chocolate. Charcoal. Ham.
T: Deep roasted coffee and dark bitter chocolate start this beauty off with a nice earthly hop bitterness on the tongue. And then comes the smoke! Charred wood and earth are polished off by a smoked ham flavor.
M: Creamy and smooth. Minimal carbonation. Dry.
D: I happen to enjoy all smoked brews and the more smoke the better. This definitely qualifies as one the top smoked beers that I have tried. Recommended.
04-08-2007 00:32:40 | More by Tyrawlings
4.1/5 rDev +2.2%
750ml bottle received in the No BS BIF Beta from HimerMan. Corked and caged.
Poured in a heavy glass chalice, formed a 1/4" light brown head over the opaque dark brown/black brew. Head fades down to a tight, solid layer of froth, with heavy, slow-falling lace. Aroma is smoke, heavy malt, and booze, in that order. Taste exhibits the same attributes, just moved around a bit. Starts with the hearty grain sweetness, then the smoke comes in like a house afire, and then closes with warmth that grows over time. Mouthfeel and drinkability are both good as well. Interesting brew here, and a worthy cause, for sure.
04-03-2007 00:42:55 | More by ppoitras
4.63/5 rDev +15.5%
From a corked and caged bomber, poured in a big-ass wine glass.
A: Beeeeautiful. Extremely dark brown, revealed a faint ruby tint when held to up to my desk lamp. Frothy tan head that simply. Doesn't. Go. Away.
S: To me, the only area where this isn't off-the-chart good. Roasted, a little alcohol, a little smoke -- but not nearly as much as I expected.
T: Wow. Roasted malts swirling with the smoke, which reminds me a bit of a really good Scotch. Alcohol is present but not overwhelming and there's a burned sugar flavor that adds sweetness at the finish. This is meant to be big, and it is, but all the components are perfectly balanced. Amazing.
M: Creamy, velvety, viscous.
D: Definitely not a session beer -- the alcohol takes care of that -- but boy, I want some more.
I tend to be pretty enthusiastic about stuff, but I'm not exaggerating when I say this is one of the best beers I've ever tasted. I have to drive to Ohio to get it, but it's totally worth the trip.
03-28-2007 02:32:00 | More by unclecrappy
4.45/5 rDev +11%
Abyssal black with a richly dense head of mocha colored froth. Beautiful retention and lacing, a great looking beer.
Aroma is a delicious marriage of smoke and chocolate with notes of molasses, scorched sugar, toffee, leather, wood, and coffee. Complex and mysterious.
Flavor is just delicious. A fantastic Imperial Porter meets its match with a generous dose of hardwood smoke, the combination is highly complimentary. As it warms complex nuances of dark bittersweet chocolate, espresso beans, dry cracked leather, creamy toffee, and dark fruit emerge. An earthy hop finish adds to the complex structure. Very well done.
Body is big, slick, and velvety. The alcohol is not noticable at all either. I greedily drank this 750 myself over the coarse of a cool Sunday afternoon,...bliss.
03-27-2007 01:13:36 | More by AlexJ
4.7/5 rDev +17.2%
This beer poured a dark brown color with a moderate head that fell fast and left some lacing on the glass. The aroma had a lot of smoke character with some chocolate and caramel. The flavor was much the same way. Very thick and smooth with lots of surprisingly smooth smoke character. The smoke flavors are the most dominant, but there are also plenty of flavors of chocolate, roasted malts, and a hint of coffee. Very drinkable and extremely enjoyable. Thick bodied as well.
03-21-2007 17:05:12 | More by clvand0
5/5 rDev +24.7%
Poured from a 750ml bottle that I shipped back from Denver. Label had the year on the front. It was a deep black color even against a light. The head was huge and brown. It slowly settled to a thick foam and had great lacing. The smell was obviously heavy on the smoke which I love. Also could smell the roasted malts and molasses. Also got a hint of the 9.2% ABV. The taste was incredible and followed the smell - great smokey taste with some sweetness and just a touch of bitter at the end. The mouthfeel was solid and creamy. With this one, Left Hand nailed it. Soon as you get your first whiff you know you are going to be drinking one special beer. With the size and ABV, it's a one bottle affair but could see drinking this weekly if I could get here. Highly, Highly recommend. (5, HR, T,Y)
03-14-2007 02:07:17 | More by TexIndy
4.25/5 rDev +6%
750ml bottle, corked and caged. Pours a dark brown with ruby highlights. It has a monstrous light brown head that retains and laces the glass.
The aroma is lots of smoke (liquid smoke and fire with some BBQ coming out as it warms), grains and some chocolate malts.
The flavor is sweet, slightly sugary, malts and a touch of dark fruits with a large smoke presence. It has a crisp, moderate hop finish. The alcohol is well hidden, but is definitely there. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with slightly sharp carbonation.
Overall, this is an excellent brew! This is what I had hoped for from Stone's smoked porter. If this was cheaper ($11 per 750ml), I'd buy this all the time!
03-12-2007 06:11:52 | More by Beaver13
3.85/5 rDev -4%
First have to say that the process of opening this was insane. The unwinding of the wire to release the cork was way too hard. The little tab was way too small to grab for anyone without girl fingers. On top of that it must have been twisted with some sort of tool with leverage because I eneded up using a pen through the hole for leverage. Complaining aside now...
Appearance: Pretty dark, much more than I was expecting for a porter. Could see a tinge of brown if held up to a halogen light. Decent amount of head.
Smell: Pretty good. A little smoky, less than I expected. A bit of alcohol and sweetness..
Taste: Much more smoky in taste with a little toffee and rosted malt. Coffee and chocolate was also there but mildly. No alcohol presence. Long finish.
Overall: Not nearly a Rauschbier that I was expecting but a good representation of an American attempt at a smoky beer. Would drink again but not go looking for as it was a little on the high side of the price range.
03-12-2007 01:56:37 | More by nriech
4.45/5 rDev +11%
750ml bottle, corked and caged, states 10.5% ABV, "2006 Bottle Conditioned"
I can't tell if there is a yeast/sediment layer at the bottom due to the pitch black color. Pours into a wide-mouthed wine glass with a huge, dense, uniform beige head that leaves little to no lacing, and sticks around moderately long for such a high ABV beer.
Aroma is intensely smoky/peaty.
Taste: intensely smoky and peaty, as much or more so than many Alaskan Smoked Porter vintages. Some wood and creosote, though these are backgrounded.
Slightly high carbonation for a high gravity beer, and a sharp, warm mouth. Alcohol is relatively understated for 10.5%, the smoke/peat pervades everything.
The taste is simultaneously complex, and not complex... it's got layers of smoke, peat, creosote, and dark roasted alcohol, but it's smoke, peat, and more smoke and peat.
Delicious, well made, and something I'd buy again. Yes, I like intensely smoked and peated beers well enough to sit down and drink a whole bottle.
03-06-2007 02:11:24 | More by warmstorage
3.25/5 rDev -19%
These smoked beers are neat to try but not a home run with me. The beer poured a thick black with a very active head. The head sounded like bacon frying. The smell was like a woods fire. The taste was smokey and tasted a great deal like smoked salmon. Mouthfeel was diminished a bit due to the aggressive abv. Drinkable, if you like the style this is about in line with AK Smoked Porter. Served into a pint from a corked and caged 750ml bottle. Being a Wildland firefighter myself I was looking forward to trying this beer.
03-02-2007 03:25:09 | More by Enola
4.25/5 rDev +6%
Pours a dark brown with a massive sustaining tan head that rises and holds about 1/2" above the glass. Incredible!
Tons of smoke aroma. It smells like my wildland firefighting gear after a fire. I love that smell.
Ton's of smoke in the flavor and some pipe tobacco. Roasted malt backbone.
Mouthfeel is creamy and filling.
The intense smoke flavor and fullness makes keeps this one to one pint for me, but it is an incredible pint. Best Left Hand beer I've had.
03-01-2007 02:44:27 | More by wcudwight
4.25/5 rDev +6%
750ml brown bottled dated 2006.
Pours opaque dark brown & black with mammoth thick tan head. Foam recedes slowly to a creamy covering and great lace. Pungent smoked malt aroma overrides almost everything else; hints of chocolate and coffee malt sneak through as the beer warms. The flavor begins with rich toasted malts, develops a smoky tobacco and leather center, and finishes almost astringently dry, with powdered coffee, raisins, and a bit of hops. Some warming alcohol fruitiness builds as you work through the bottle, but not as much as you'd expect from the ABV. Medium-to-thick body is sparsely carbonated, creamy, and slightly oily. An unusual style and a great find!
02-26-2007 02:58:16 | More by dgallina
4.1/5 rDev +2.2%
Dark, near black, brown with a super thick off-white head that, when it finally settles down, sits like batter on top of the liquid. Smells highly smoked, woody more than meaty, with undertones of caramel and nuts and a little creamy. Much less smoke in the taste, or maybe its just much more malty goodness. Sweetened chocolate and roasted coffee flavors. The body is slightly more than medium and fairly creamy. Tasty and quite worth the bargain price we paid for it.
02-19-2007 05:16:59 | More by wedge
4.25/5 rDev +6%
Color is almost black but appears to actually be dark purple-ish brown with ruby highlights around the edges where light sneeks through. Smells crazy. Aromas are all out nutty, smoked woody forest, with vanilla and some mystery fruits. Taste smooths out a lot but is still has an intense edge. Flavors form into a nice balance with an alcoholic kick. Finish is semi dry and woody and nicely warming. Decent mouthfeel and drinkable like it should be.
Good interesting porter.
02-19-2007 04:42:29 | More by tastybeer
Smoke Jumper Smoked Imperial Porter from Left Hand Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 519 ratings.