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Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter) - Left Hand Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter)Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

356 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 356
Reviews: 241
rAvg: 4.03
pDev: 9.43%
Wants: 21
Gots: 32 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  7.80% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Rayek on 11-15-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter) Alström Bros
Ratings: 356 | Reviews: 241 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ccrida
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Edit to the review below - the next day, I had another pint, after some IPAs, and it tasted quite a bit smokier, meatier. Good, just way a different. Confirmed to the be the same keg. Two different experiences really, both equally good. Smoke vs Malt.

On draught at the Collins Pub, Fade To Black v2 is black with a tan head that leaves scattered lace.

Smell is coffee like, some coco powder as well. As it warmed, the smoke finally peeked though.

Taste is pretty good, a robust dark malts but balanced and not overly sweet. Not getting much smoke, even after it bloomed on the nose, just a whisper, which suits me fine.

Mouthfeel was smooth, medium heavy bodied.

Drinkability was pretty good. I haven't had any of there beers since a CO visit at years ago, at which time I was unimpressed and thought they were unbalanced and generally hot. This beer was none of those thing, and was a really balanced, restrained example of the style.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.01/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Sprecher nonic.
Bottled on 11 29 10, no info available.

Thanks to Beerwolf77 for never letting me leave his house with either an empty hand or stomach.

A - I wouldn't say "Fade" to black as it pours pretty black already. Then again, as the firm, large tan head cascades up, I suppose it does fade. Slivers of clarity show through the beer but it's pretty hard to see through the incredibly dense lace.

S - Delicious notes of dark chocolate chink and fudge blend well with black silk coffee and undertones of molasses. Heavily roasted malt is all over here but it isn't bitter smelling. Very faint smoke.

T - Heavily roasted malts are potent, yet...bland and one-dimensional at the same time. Chocolaty with a faint smoke finish. While one-dimensional, it still tastes good.

M - Incredibly rich and thick, Fade to Black Vol. 2 is silky smooth with low carbonation but it doesn't feel flat at all. Soft dry bitterness on the finish.

D - You better believe I listened to Fade to Black by Metallica while reviewing this! Despite it's thick, heavy nature, it's still fairly drinkable. This beer feels much more like a traditional American stout as opposed to a Baltic Porter though. I also can't help but notice there are two Volumes of Fade to Black much in the same way the song can be broken down into two distinct parts.

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.94/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle pours black without highlighting. Small brown foam fades fast and leaves a nice collar.

Smoke is there, but not over the top. Smells a bit like putting fresh pine boughs on a campfire. Some molasses and caramel come through from the malt.

This is a pretty good beverage here. Mouthfeel is viscous and smooth. Smoke is plentiful yet restrained. There is just enough sweetness to compensate for the smoke and alcohol. Hops are piney and add plenty, a little more than I would like actually, of bitterness. Some licorice hints come in on the back end. Not bad, gets a bit old the more I sip on it. I think one six pack is enough for me.

Photo of thagr81us
3.8/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had at Beachwood BBQ at the Bruery RS Post-Party (can't remember who shared this one, BM me to give proper credit). Served from bottle into a goblet. Poured pitch black with a minimal light tan head. There was no lacing evident throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, smoke, and nutmeg. The flavor was of roasted malt, smoke, and wood. It had a medium feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this thing was smokey as crap. Despite this fact, it was a pretty good brew though. Had a decent aroma as well. Just wish that some of the smoke aspect to this one would not have been present and allowed some more modest things to come through. Worth trying at least once.

4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of Brenden
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours in the glass creamy, thick and heavy. It's a deep brown that comes just short of black, and a small but thick brown head forms on top that soon fades to a thick foam and leaves some light to moderate lacing.
There's definitely something lactic in the aroma, giving a cream feel to it, underneath a bit of smoke and thick malts. This one's got lots of barley and charred woods to it.
Roasted barley malts are heaviest here, blending very nicely with a milk/cream flavor, smoke and a separate charred woods taste. There are some hops in here as well, adding a bit of balance. All throughout is a touch of the acidity I've come to realize is natural of Baltics. There's a nice mix of bitter, creamy, lightly sweet, smoky, and tart in the flavor.
This is one rich, thick beer with lots of smoothness to it. The mouthfeel is excellent, and this beer just flows nicely. There's little carbonation, but enough to give it life and allow focus to go to the thick smoothness of it.
This is a great one and certainly one to have again.

Photo of barnzy78
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of champ103
3.65/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours an ink black color, nearly opaque. A small, bubbly, tan head rises to a finger. The foam recedes in a second with light lace.
S: Big roasted malt up front. Slight acrid and astringent coffee. Plenty of meaty smoke as well.
T: Follows the nose. Big roasted malt and coffee. Big meaty smoke flavors as well.
M/D: A medium to full body. Good carbonation, and silky smooth. Easy to drink. The bottle is gone in no time.

I am enjoying this, though the smoke is strong, and I am really not a big fan of smoky beers like this. The beer succeeds as a smoked beer for sure, and will be a huge hit with any smoke head. Well done Left Hand, even though it is not among my favorite style.

Photo of pathman
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of Jwale73
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle served in a standard pint glass. Bottled on 12/21/10 indicated on the bottle. Pours an inky black with a quarter inch, mocha-colored head that quickly dissipates and disperses towards the edges. Some specks and strands of lacing revealed during the tasting. Fantastic nose - bold dark fruit gradually gives way to a roasted coffee quality with a suggestion of cocoa. Taste consistent with nose; however, a smoky quality pleasantly permeates the flavor profile, bringing the coffee and roasted character to the foreground, with the dark fruit lingering lightly in the back. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a lively carbonation that leaves a light residual burn at the back of the throat. This is a fantastic Baltic Porter - great flavor and complexity. One of my favorites by far. I'm going to have to obtain more of this before it goes away. Too bad this isn't part of Left Hand's regular line-up because it is quite exceptional.

Photo of ColForbinBC
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A thin mocha colored cap sits atop a near ink black body. Head doesn't stay around too long, but does leave a thin collar and rings of lace.

A tasty little aroma here. Cocoa powder, smoked malt, and lightly roasted coffee beans. Often, the smokiness in smoked beers is too intense and detracts from the overall experience. However, Left Hand has done a nice job of blending everything together.

The flavor pretty much follows the nose. Mild roast with cocoa powder, bitter coffee and a mellow smokiness. Everything plays well together. A unique take on a baltic porter that definitely makes it stick out in the style for me.

Smooth and creamy, medium bodied, carbonation is perfect. I served this chilled a little below room temp and it was perfect.

There was nothing that detracted from the drinkability of this beer for me. The alcohol was held in check, very good mouthfeel, flavors worked very well together.

This definitely isn't the best one of the style I have ever had, but it stands out. The layer of smoke is a welcome addition. This is definitely a beer I would seek out again.

Photo of mrfrancis
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of drpimento
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Excellent beer! Served with a thick, creamy, fine, light tan head and good lacing. Color is an opaque brown black. Aroma is malt, toffee, roasty, toasty, fire pit. Flavor is a sweet porter with excellent smoke balance. Body is good and carbonation is just a tad light. Finish is like flavor and has good length and balance throuhout. Session beer.

Photo of jophish17
3.5/5  rDev -13.2%

Photo of KarlHungus
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours an opaque black color. The head is one inch in height, and recedes rather quickly into a thin cap of lacing. The aroma is camp fire smoke, roasted malt, and a hint of bacon. The taste is of bacon, chocolate, and smoke. I'm really digging the taste of this beer. The aftertaste lingers beautifully, and screams drink more of me. The mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation, and a velvety texture. Overall, this is a really good beer that I will drink a bunch of until it is gone. Kudos to Left Hand for hitting another one out of the park with their Fade to Black series.

Photo of EgadBananas
3.91/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This looks wonderful. Deep and dark, with maybe a hint of dark brown around the edges. Light mocha colored head adorns, laces nicely, retention is good.

Very smoky. Not quite overboard, but definitely one of the more smokier brews I've had. Bits of roasted malts and sweetness round it out.

Starts out smoky, then some nice sweetness, roasted malts, chocolate and even some roasted coffee.

Feel is full, creamy, and smooth.

Overall solid drinkability. Very enjoyable, and I'll definitely be getting some if I can find it in TX later this month!

Photo of alexgash
4.5/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle.

Very dark, used motor oil body. Steady finger of lasting, dense, dark khaki head. Nice lacing. Nose of dark chocolate, black licorice, roasted coffee, earthy peat, and a hint of campfire.

Meaty, roasted malts up front. Coffee bitterness sits above smoky dark chocolate, roasted barley, and some earthy tobacco. Faint sweetness, with a little dark fruit in there, but the smoky, earthy roastedness steals the show (with an applause from this drinker). Flinty, lingering smoke, semi-sweet chocolate and coffee bitterness in the finish. Full-bodied, with a nice chewy feel. Terrific beer and a cool label to boot!

Photo of barczar
4.07/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque deep brown with a frothy mocha head that lingers.

Aroma is slightly smoky, with deep notes of cocoa dominating. There's a hint of dark fruit and soy.

Flavor follows suit, with dark chocolate malt forming the backbone of the profile, finishing roasty with a hint of coffee. Cocoa is rich. There's a touch of dark cherry tang. Smoke is subtle and adds nice complexity, reminiscent of peat in a scotch ale.

Body is fairly full and smooth, with minimal carbonation and light alcohol warmth.

Didn't get to try this one fresh, but it's holding up amazingly well. Might be the perfect time to drink it, as the smoke is subdued.

Photo of Brent
3.53/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

An interesting concept, but execution is just so-so. A nice, mainstream Baltic Porter - some heft to the body, with inky roasted malt notes. The smoke in the malt is very lightly handled - while I wouldn't want it to overpower the beer, here it needed a bit more distinction. More like the smoke you get from peat than anything.

Photo of Bung
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. Fairly black pour with just some brown around the edges. Thin layer of light tan on top.

Aroma, a good dose of roastiness. Smoked peak, malt, coffee. Dark chocolate.

Not getting the overwhelming smoke others get. Just a nice accent on the roast giving this more coffee than peat, earth and chocolate. A less sweet, more roasty baltic. There is some dark chocolate and cocoa that comes with the roast and smoke in the finish.

Medium bodied, and coating. Carbonation is all right, could be a little less to make it more creamy and less harsh.

No complaints with this for me, especially for 9.99 a sixer. This style has definetely creeped into 2nd on my favorites list.

Photo of Hellpop65
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of cosmicevan
4.44/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

big thanks to cfh64 for sending me an amazing surprise thank you box that included this!

a - opened the bottle and filled my CCB snifter. black hole with some liquid shine. thin bubbled head that bubbled away quick. has a bit of a brownish tint to it.

s - very nice. chocolate roastiness. all malt. wonderful smelling porter.

t - even roastier than the nose. again, chocolate...burnt wood...and a malt party.

m - standard porter tingle. much smoother than i'd normally expect.

o - overall, this is an excellent beer. really fine example of a robust porter with wonderful bold flavors. very excellent.

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.76/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into Staghorn Beer Stien.

Appearance: Black Oil slick just got poured into a glass. Aggressive pour yields almost 2 fingers of tanish brown colored creamy head. Decent lacing.

Smell: moderate smell of smoke. Chocolates and malty.

Taste: Heavy smoke right away that malty sweetness takes away as fast as it showed up. Dry and bitter chocolate in the middle and then just a bit more smoke flavor, this time the smoke tastes sweeter. Slight taste of charred oak and some vanilla hidden in the background, not very pronounced at any time throught entire beer, but still reminding you its there.

Mouthfeel: my favorite part of this beer. Silky and creamy, i think this is what brings the whole beer together and it surprised me a bit!

Drinkability: good drinkability for a porter. The smoke is not overdone at anytime, its probably the best smoked porter that i have had since New Glarus Unplugged Smoke on the Porter. I did not think anything would compare.

Photo of jera1350
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pure black with a thin, yet creamy brown head that leaves some nice lacing.

Deeply roasted malt with a dry charcoal smell. Little to no sweetness present with plenty of smoking wood as well. Can't wait to dig in!

Wow, is this spot on for a smoked beer. Plenty of roasty malts abound, but the smoked malt is the highlight. Big smokey campfire taste that lingers well into the finish. Hints of bacon, espresso bean and caramelized sugar are also present. An early Christmas gift for the palate!

Big, creamy and oily smooth. This feels how a good imperial stout should.

Absolutely loving every bit of this. This beer is a homerun especially in the flavor department. Quite possibly the best baltic/smoked porter I have ever had. I could easily enjoy a couple of these and look forward to the next one already. Go out and get this one!

Photo of ADTaber
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter) from Left Hand Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 356 ratings.