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Fade To Black (Volume 3 - Pepper Porter) - Left Hand Brewing Company

Fade To Black (Volume 3 - Pepper Porter)Fade To Black (Volume 3 - Pepper Porter)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

485 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 485
Reviews: 191
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 14.36%


Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: claytong on 09-28-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 485 | Reviews: 191 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Brianofthemarsh
Brianofthemarsh

Oklahoma

4.16/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

a - dark brown, nearly black. Quickly dissipating head
s - roasty and coffee in the nose.
t- same on the taste with smokiness and subtle hints of chili.
m- medium
o- This is the first peppered beer besides Prairie bomb that works for me. I could enjoy a couple of these before moving on.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2013 23:08:26 | More by Brianofthemarsh
Photo of chugalug06
chugalug06

Colorado

3.03/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Slow rising and fast falling tan foamy head. Brew is light black. No lacing to speak of.

Chalky, lots of coffee, and milk chocolate.

Thin, watery, missing much complexity. For being a "pepper porter", I'm not picking up on any pepper other than extremely faint backend hints. Awkward high carbonation and funky chalky/dry bitterness. lots of weird chocolate flavors.

Not sure I can recommend as compared to the others in the series... Lefthand can surely do better.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2013 02:26:13 | More by chugalug06
Photo of beerdrifter
beerdrifter

Germany

3.29/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Picked this up while on vacation in PA. Dark brown, nearly black pour with a beige one finger head with great retention and lacing. Nice roasty, earthy nose with hints of cocoa, dark chocolate, and some subtle smoke. The taste follows suit with hints of mocha, tobacco, cocoa, coffee, dark chocolate, some subtle chili, and the smoke is even more prevalent. The mouthfeel is somewhat chalky and mouth-coating and very thin with a dry finish. Overall, a bit disappointing. Never had the base beer, but this didn't convince me to seek it out.

Serving type: bottle

05-19-2013 16:36:46 | More by beerdrifter
Photo of Jadjunk
Jadjunk

Georgia

3.15/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Left Hand Brewing's Fade To Black Vol. 3 Pepper Porter is brewed in the style of an American Porter brewed with Chile Peppers. No label information. Bottled on 1/14/12.

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to a snifter. Served north of 52º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a chocolate milk-tone head of a frothy cream consistency with an average retention and quality. Body color is a very dark brown, near black with deep orange highlights and a mild viscosity. Carbonation is not visible. Decent appearance for body color, but a little shallow in depth and the head quality suffers. 3.25

(Smell) Aroma consists of mild hints of roasted cocoa, a pinch of black malt, a bit of alcohol heat and some aromatic wet cardboard funk, likely from the age of the beer. Aroma is already a bit dated with most of the chili content gone and the remaining body soon to follow. Potency is medium at best. 3

(Taste) Flavor maintains better. Roasted chocolate malt and barley body with a scratchy chili spice on the mildly dry finish. Not a bad balance although it's certainly lacking a touch of balance against the sweet and dense malt body, perhaps a touch of earthy hop character that the chilis can't really counteract well. As such, the beer's flavor profile is very heavy without being equally complex. 3.25

(Mouthfeel) Mildly viscous slick texture with low carbonation, a touch of chili heat and a mild dry finish. It's a bit lacking in carbonation, and doesn't really go for drinkability as much as it should. 2.75

(Overall) Chili-infused beers are definitely a product of 2012, but it's not a part of craft beer history I regret tasting. This was not a bad take on the style, and the chili managed to stay well preserved in the flavor over the past year, whereas the carbonation and aroma have either been always lacking or fallen out. I hope that in the future if chili porters are brewed again that they will keep in mind that these beers can stay drinkable and light while maintaining the chili kick just as well. 3.25

Left Hand Brewing Company's
Fade To Black Vol. 3 Pepper Porter
/5.00

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2013 01:37:25 | More by Jadjunk
Photo of mountdew1
mountdew1

New Hampshire

3.55/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into an imperial pint glass. Color was a very dark brown, with next to no head. What little head there was was a light brown. Mostly opaque, but just looked a little watery. Aroma seemed like a smokey malt or grainy bread, that had just a tad of chilli hiding in the back. Flavor starts off like a well balanced porter, maybe a bit heavy on the malt, and then veers into crazy town with a kick of chilli. Not overwhelming or bad in any way, but enough that its a different flavor with a bit of a lingering kick. Felt good in the mouth. Coated well with just a tad of bubbles. The slight burn on the tongue kept it down a smidge. Overall, a fairly unique beer. Definitely something I was glad to try, but not high on the repeat list.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2012 23:45:20 | More by mountdew1
Photo of GPHarris
GPHarris

Alabama

3.98/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

bottled 9/30/11

a - poured a one finger thick coffee-colored head into an english pub glass that left a thin ring which was gone halfway through. the body was dark brown bordering on black with reddish-brown tints.
s - chocolate malt with a hint of sweet tea.
t - sweet in front with a spicy pepper finish. the sweetness had an almost coca-cola like quality to it.
m - smooth and slick.
o - i would have liked a little more carbonation to this one but i'll chalk that up to this beer being a year old though it has been in my fridge the whole time.

Serving type: bottle

09-21-2012 15:03:40 | More by GPHarris
Photo of DelMontiac
DelMontiac

Oklahoma

4.18/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. Fade to Black Vol. 3 bottled on 11/28/11. Poured into an imperial pint glass.

I have to give this one a flat average on appearance due to the complete lack of head. A ring of bubbles formed around the edge of the glass. Snap, crackle, pop - done. Color is nice mahogany/black, but anyone can make that color. Lace - nada.

I do like the aroma from FTBV3. It's very sweet like dark fruits simmering in chocolate, molasses, and brandy. Not original, but good.

Flavor is well above par for me on this. Very dark chocolate malt, vanilla bean, mocha, almond, and a touch of smoke. Then there's the pepper. No added flavor really, but you get a very very mild blanket of warmth from the chilies.

Feel is moderate - very velvety and slightly oily maybe from the chilies.

I bought this as a single, but it's proven to be worthy of another visit. I'll buy six next time.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2012 21:19:30 | More by DelMontiac
Photo of scootpolute
scootpolute

Texas

3.13/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Presentation: 12 oz brown with a simple yet inviting label...b&w flames with bubbles...

Appearance: Jet-black with a clinging tan lace that seems to stay for a while.

Smell: Lots of malts, chocolatewith hints of charcoal, more roasted malts and a touch of marshmellow...

Taste: Pretty smooth start with a nice medium bodied mouth feel. After the luscious mouth feel come the flavour which is quite malty, followed by the spicy pepper tones...the spice of pepper lingers until the end there 'are' chocolate/mocha flavors (espresso) along the way from the malts, but with each and ever sip, the 'pepper' is what sticks out (hence the name) ... not many hops to mention...

Notes: This one is interesting...The pepper thing kind of killed it for me...if the pepper was left out, I think it would have been better...I'll give orininality though, but I think 'THAT' kind of stuff should be left for 'session' beer, or special 'tap-room' show-cases...chasin' cheers :~)

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2012 23:16:54 | More by scootpolute
Photo of tronester
tronester

Oklahoma

3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a jet black with amber highlights. Thin tan head. Smells of some rich milk chocolate.

Now when I first opened this beer and drank it, I was a bit puzzled. I had drank Fade to Black before, and this tasted similar, but with a burning sensation in my throat. My initial impressions were that the beer had somehow gone bad and gotten infected. Then I looked closer at the label. I did not realize that there were actually 3 volumes, and this was a new beer that I had not yet tried. The fact that it is a pepper porter certainly explained the burning!

The taste begins with a dark chocolate start, followed by some molasses. The finish is a bit of earthy dried pepper flavor, followed by a not too intense burning from the pepper heat. Quite nice really.

Rich mouthfeel. Overall a very good beer. I like how it is not over peppered. That is, it does not scald your throat with pepper burning, but instead provide a nice mild heat.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2012 00:18:19 | More by tronester
Photo of WastingFreetime
WastingFreetime

Wisconsin

3.55/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Very dark brown with a light beige head that doesn't last for long, smells like a standard porter (chocolate malt and light roastedness), only perhaps just with a bit more smokiness to it. The flavor has all of these elements and also has the expected chile heat, which rises up gently from the midsip onwards. I would call the amount of chile flavor somewhat understated, but than again, my palate is known to be rather jaded to chile heat so YMMV. Texturally, this beer stands on the lighter side of medium body and has appropriate carbonation. Not a bad brew, but nothing earthshaking either.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2012 19:30:07 | More by WastingFreetime
Photo of secondtooth
secondtooth

Indiana

3.98/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep oil-black. Modest head of tan bubbles, and no lace.

Nose is a little roasty, with only a hint of peppery spice. Different and subtle.

Taste is chocolate roasty up front, followed by that hint of spiciness near the finish. The pepper tones are definitely muted (maybe my bottle was aged for some months), and this subtle and smooth porter is an easy and enjoyable one.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2012 14:31:10 | More by secondtooth
Photo of thain709
thain709

Pennsylvania

3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark brown body with nice ruby highlights...the head was very thin, off white in color, and settled into a spider web head with a full ring...light lacing

S - Sweet vanilla, full roast, slightly smokey, dark chocolate...had to search pretty hard to find the pepper...a nice nose, but would have liked some heat

T - The vanilla and roasted malt work very well together as they are the first things that come out...notes of chocolate and coffee come through in the middle of the beer...there is a hint of heat towards the finish...a smokey presence is in full force for the finish

M - Medium bodied...some carbonation, subtle heat, smokey finish

O - This one was better than Volume 2, but I enjoyed Volume 1 a little better...it would have been nice to have more heat coming through, but overall it was a good porter

Serving type: bottle

07-17-2012 20:25:38 | More by thain709
Photo of Jeffo
Jeffo

Netherlands

2.45/5  rDev -36%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Got this at Geers in Gent last weekend.

From a bottle into a snifter

APPEARANCE: Pours out dark brown and yields a 1+ finger, medium looking, fizzy, light tan head with decent retention. Black body with medium levels of carbonation evident. Head fades to a splotchy wisp and ring but leaves no real lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Roasted and smoked malts, cocoa powder and some light peppery notes. A touch of caramel and sweet cream as well. SMells pretty nice really.

TASTE: Roasted and dark malts up front with sweet cream, dark chocoalte and a pepper bite at the swallow. Mild but lingering aftertaste of chocolate, vanilla cream and roasted notes are minor compared to the pepper burn that hits the back of the throat. The pepper component is rough here. Unballanced and somewhat offensive.

PALATE: Medium body and medium carbonation. Creamy on the palate, goes down fine and finishes a touch dry. A big pepper kick tickels the back of the throat. Everything is fine, but the peppers make it like spicy mexican food. Fine for mexican, but tough for a beer.

OVERALL: This is fine, especially if you like spicy food. It has a big pepper kick for sure, but in my view, that pepper kick just makes the beer harsh as opposed to adding any real flavor or complexity to the beer. The base beer seems fine and perhaps this one would have been better without the chili peppers. Regardless, Left Hand can brew nice beer, but this one was a dud if you ask me. I dumped most of it. Skip it.

Serving type: bottle

07-09-2012 19:14:53 | More by Jeffo
Photo of TheCondor
TheCondor

Missouri

4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Also included in the Mountain Mixer. Side poured aggressively from a bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance - As expected, pours motor oil black with a two finger dark tan head that dissipates fairly rapidly. The head does leave super sticky lacing on the glass though. Impressive looking porter.

Smell - Mostly controlled by the classic porter scents of dark chocolate and coffee, but there was a hint of peppery spiciness in there as well as some super strong coffee. Excellent

Taste - Similar to above, but with more complexity. Roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, and cocoa are the prime movers. At the end of the taste, however, there is an awesome peppery, chili powder like taste that zaps the palate.

Mouthfeel - The spicy pepper really moves the mouthfeel into rare territory, and the porter itself coats the palate and throat with a thick, rich flavor. I love it.

Overall - Too bad this was only brewed once. This is an excellent porter, and I think it is something that Left Hand should offer year round, or at least seasonally. Highly recommended, I will buy and drink again. Outstanding twist on my favorite style.

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2012 02:25:31 | More by TheCondor
Photo of Bfarr
Bfarr

Washington

4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black with a thin, tight, and tan head with okay retention. Chocolate and spice aroma with notes of roasted malt. Chocolate and roasted malts come out in the flavor with pepper coming on strong in the end. A pleasant hot (from the pepper) finish that lingers lightly. Smooth feel with a slick mouthcoating.

Flavors meld and balance with a sweet and spicy overall feel to it. It might not be for everyone and it certainly is not something to drink a lot of but this is done well for a unique ingredient beer.

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2012 23:27:04 | More by Bfarr
Photo of BMMillsy
BMMillsy

Florida

3.58/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Light pepper on the nose from a jet black pour. The black pepper seems to work much better than chile. This one had some roasted grain notes to it and a little hint of smoke. The pepper wasn't overpowering, which was nice. Tiny tinge of sweet keeps it drinkable. Nicely done.

Serving type: bottle

06-25-2012 21:31:18 | More by BMMillsy
Photo of barczar
barczar

Kentucky

3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque deep brown with garnet highlights and a fleeting half inch mocha head.

Chocolate, roast malt, and dark fruit open the aroma. There's a bit of peaty earthiness and a touch of alcohol. Smells sweet, with notes of molasses.

Flavor has a bit of pepper throughout, and the fruitiness observed in the aroma accents the pepper bite well. Roast malt and flavors of chocolate, cola, and a bit of coffee bitterness form the backbone. The pepper is spicy enough to be somewhat dominant. A bit of nuttiness emerges as it warms.

Body is moderate, smooth, with low carbonation. There's a peppery bite at the finish and a bit of alcohol warmth.

Overall, a decent porter, but the flavor is definitely masked a little by the pepper addition. Not for those who don't like a spicy kick!

Serving type: bottle

06-22-2012 04:47:52 | More by barczar
Photo of Danny1217
Danny1217

Florida

4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark color with a little bit of light shining through, creating some dark brown and red hues. Small tan head with decent lacing.
Smells of Roasted malt, chocolates, and coffee.
Taste a bit milky. Some chocolate and coffee. The pepper comes out with a lingering spiciness in the throat. Actually quite interesting and pleasing. As I continued to drink this I noticed more and more pepper. Very interesting.
A bit of a thick body with somewhat light carbonation.

The pepper is nicely balanced with the malty sweetness. A very good porter.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2012 06:52:22 | More by Danny1217
Photo of Sirwootalot
Sirwootalot

Minnesota

4.45/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Holy cow, I was NOT expecting this. I bought a Mountain Mixer on a whim (Also containing milk stout, polestar pilsener, and sawtooth ale), only quickly glancing at "black ale" and assuming I was in store for something like Arrogant Bastard.

My god was I wrong.

The first thing you notice is that it pours utterly pitch-black, with a hint of ebony around the edges and almost no head whatsoever. The nose is dominated by roasted barley with hints of bitter cacao, and is fairly mild.
The second it hit my mouth I thought "What? this is a porter, and a damn good one at that" - a heavy, malty backbone with hints of espresso foam and pumpernickel. After a few seconds, a subtle, insidious, and utterly divine rush of fresh-cracked black pepper washed through my mouth from front to back, bringing out almost fruity jalapeno-like notes from the yeast as it ever so gently ignited the back of my throat. The mouthfeel is unexpected - this is one of the more drinkable porters out there, lacking the all-too-common syrupiness that comes from too much chocolate or coffee used in some others.

Oh god, I need more of this beer in my life. It's hands-down the best surprise i've had all year, and a new favorite.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2012 01:50:51 | More by Sirwootalot
Photo of Dennoman
Dennoman

Belgium

4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a snifter.

I was very curious about this one, as I'd never tried a pepper beer before.

Pour isn't exactly black. Ruby red moves up a good while into the glass before going into a darker, almost bordeaux tinge. Nice brown head, lush and inviting.

Nose is coffee, molasses and dark chocolate. Also quite a bit of smokey roasted malts. Nothing extremely lush, but does the trick.

Taste is primarily coffee and dark chocolate, with the chili burn not manifesting until a good while after swallowing. Sits in the back of the throat and warms. Definitely nothing too strong. Drink with extreme moderation, because this warming, burning sensation does get more pronounced with every sip. Great mouth feel with very low carbonation.

I really think they knew what they were doing with this one. The chili burn doesn't really enhance the flavor as much as it makes for a very interesting tasting experience. Good thing I was sharing this with a friend, because I'm not sure if it would have remained as pleasant, were I to finish the whole bottle by myself.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2012 09:04:41 | More by Dennoman
Photo of PorterLambic
PorterLambic

Florida

4.28/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black (duh) with but a thin film of dark tan for a head. No lace. No light penetration.
Smell is roasted malts, smoked pork, teriyaki with hints of molasses and maybe vanilla. Great complexity and balance.
Taste is similar with coffee, roasted malts, molasses and pepper coming in later. Balance is very good.
Mostly full body, quite light effervescence. A slight coating of the palate. Really good and just what I expected. Worth savoring. If it wasn't so good to drink, this would make an excellent marinade for beef or pork.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2012 19:24:46 | More by PorterLambic
Photo of JBHayden
JBHayden

Kentucky

3.58/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a dark almost black color with a light tan head that disappears quickly with little lacing left behind.

S - Definite pepper aroma mixed with chocolate.

T - Nice chocolate flavor in the front finishing with a roasted peppery aftertaste. Spice is subtle.

M - Little carbonation that rolls nicely on the palate.

O - Not typically a fan of pepper or spicy beer but this one is one I will have again. The pepper spice is very subtle and finishes well.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2012 01:25:43 | More by JBHayden
Photo of ujsplace
ujsplace

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

Pours a near jet black colored brew with faint amber hues along the edges of the glass. Tan colored head that is about 1/2 inch thick and fades pretty quickly. Modest lacing is left behind.

Smells of deep smokey, roasted malt, chocolate spicy with maybe a hint of anise.

Tastes of nice roasted malts up front, chocolate and finishes with a pepper spice - maybe chilies...not too overwhelming - adds nice spice to the brew. Good stuff.

Medium mouth, slick and creamy.

This is a really good porter. The pepper definitely sets this one apart. It's definitely not over the top in terms of being overly spicy - it's subtle, but makes it's presence known in a good way. I'd love to get to know this brew better, but alas I have only one.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2012 01:09:52 | More by ujsplace
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

3.98/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is essentially jet black in color; traces of amber are visible near the near the edge of the glass when it is held up to the light. It poured with a very thin tan head that quickly died down, leaving only a thin collar of bubbles around the edge of the glass and a few bubbles on the surface.
S: There are moderately strong aromas of chocolate and roasted malts in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and has spicy flavors of pepper in the finish, which particularly lingers through the aftertaste.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a low to moderate amount of carbonation. The peppery spices in the finish tingles your tongue.
O: This is a very flavorful porter and the pepper adds some interesting qualities to the beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2012 23:32:56 | More by metter98
Photo of StJamesGate
StJamesGate

New York

3.65/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dense viscous black with only the slightest tinge of garnet and a ribbon of off white foam that's gone instantly in spite of a vigourous pour. Molasses, kielbasa, and caramelized sugar on nose.
Cola, muscavado sugar, some smoke, with hints of anise and prune then chili heat creeps in and buries all but a hint of woody hops.
Root beer barrel finish and some lingering chili heat. Medium, chewy, round.

Chili not overdone, and balanced overall. Still, not sure it was a great base porter to begin with. Bears a disturbing resembles to black pepper beef jerky. Sweet-hot is interesting, but not for more than one.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2012 21:57:20 | More by StJamesGate
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Fade To Black (Volume 3 - Pepper Porter) from Left Hand Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 485 ratings.