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

Not Rated.
Fade To Black (Volume 3 - Pepper Porter)Fade To Black (Volume 3 - Pepper Porter)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

192 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 192
Hads: 523
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 9.04%
Wants: 17
Gots: 52 | FT: 0
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:
Beer added by: claytong on 09-28-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 192 | Hads: 523
Photo of Sammy
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Barcade Jrsey City. Clear winner of the what I tried tonight. Three-eighths of a n inc of head. on a black bodied. Thick lace. Chile spicey aroma and some stout and licorice. Tasty, it grows on me and I finished my pint.Peppers all chiles.Wouyld have again. (267 characters)

Photo of kylehay2004
4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: 1.5 finger thick head on a near jet black body. Very nice lacing.

S: nice smokey with vanilla note

T: smokey and peppery. Just the right of peppercorn flavoring. Mild dried fruit flavor as well. Nice bite in the finish.

M: full body and moderate carbonation.

Overall this is a nice peppery porter with just the right amount of people. Well made (354 characters)

Photo of metter98
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
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. (759 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.73/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

so weird! pours a more stoutesque rich black color with a prominent mocha head. really super lively and lacey. smells not like black pepper really at all, but like a dry stout, almost burned and smooth. taste starts off like a porter normally does, satisfying, low key, and very very drinkable, but then comes the aftertaste... sharp resonant black pepper! or maybe even chili, it is warmin' up... boom! it lasts on the tongue for awhile and doesnt get hot like chili pepper, but has a pronounced warmth to it. extremely unconventional and perplexing. mouthfeel is amsolutely fantastic, with the layered smoothness of a well made dark beer and that interesting pepper thing happening at the end. im still tasting it (and enjoying it) 15 minutes after my last sip, hot on the lips a little bit like a well made steak au poivre, not like an indonesian curry. would never guess the higher abv either. well cloaked in black intrigue. awesome effort from lefthand, not my favorite beer, and i might not buy it again, but i certainly commend the originality!!! (1,054 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A well crafted American Porter with a little extra peppery bite and heat to balance against chocolate sweetness, coffee, and toast flavor.

Pouring as most Porters should with a deep and dark solid brown color with a mild haze. A dense, light tan head forms in most creamy fashion however short statured, before the light carbonation gives up on the regeneration of head character, allowing the foam stance to evaporate.

Porterish aromas carry a muted scent of chocoate, coffee, toast, and light roast. A hint of pepper can be detected but I didn't know better, I would have assumed the sharpness was from alcohol. Light vegital notes and an element of malty cream round out the nose.

Flavors of rich and creamy malt begin to shape the flavor profile, along with a quick rise of bittersweet chocolate, French press coffee, medium toast, light char, roasted walnuts, and burnt caramel. The finish brings about the rise mild heat and the bite of black peppercorns that are obviously not of alcohol origins.

Full bodied, but not chewy or rich- the early creamy carbonated and malted froathy texture makes a nice transition toward weighted malt at mid palate, before finishing roasty dry and with the complex bite of alcohol warmth and peppery sharpness.

A very good Porter with just a kiss of pepper for complexity and depth. Definately Fade to Black-worthy! (1,359 characters)

Photo of emerge077
3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled 10/27/11. Served in a footed tulip glass.

Black body, a glint of red in the light. Cascading dark tan foam, creamy texture, recedes slowly on the second pour, leaving a halo formation of lace. A thin skim remains on the surface for awhile.

It smells mildy roasty with a hint of dark fruit sweetness, raisin maybe and molasses.

Tastes sort of chocolatey and bitter, dry finish with a peppery tingle after a bigger swig. Light to medium bodied, pretty smooth and easy to drink. As it warms there are distinctive pepper notes that build up, but there isn't much heat. Overall it's pretty drinkable and tasty, though i'm not sure if i'd go for it again. (662 characters)

Photo of zeff80
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, dark, dark brown color with a one-finger, tan head of bubbly foam. It left some sudsy trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of chillies and smoked meat. Some typical porter-like aromas, too.

T - It tasted of chocolate, toffee and a mild peppery spice. Some nice heat.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with dry finish.

O - This is a really tasty pepper porter. Another good edition of the Fade to Black series. (468 characters)

Photo of oberon
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep chocolate brown with a thin beige head that was gone quickly.A great mix of smoke and pepper overtop of chocolate and roast,alot going on.Wow this os a pepper porter just like the label says,sharp smoky peppers mixed with dark roast with some light chocolate coming into play,the pepper spice is the real deal here.No holds barred here its a bold peppery porter...the way it should be. (399 characters)

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle - $1.89 at Olde Crabapple Bottle Shoppe in Alpharetta, Georgia. Bottled On: 09/22/11.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown, near black body with a tall, light tan, spumy head. No more than a few pencil-prick dots of lace on the way down.

Smell: Already, I get a little sniff of the peppers emanating up from the glass as I pour. Forward notes of chiles, with the roasty, chocolate-scented malts coming in second. Light trace of smokiness, too.

Taste: Sweet, malty beginnings of chocolate bar, caramel, sweetened coffee, and toast. Very slight smokey character preceding a smooth albeit spicy chile quality with, thankfully, no more heat that needed. The hops, at best, add a light spicy hint to aid the peppers, but, for the most part, stay out of the way of the 'guest' flavoring agent. Faint dark fruitiness. Malty, drying, lightly chile-accented finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Overall: Well-rounded, it's note just a bland, no-thought beer with a gimmicky addition of chiles thrown in, but a fairly smooth, flavorful porter integrated with the heat-inducing peppers. Nice job. (1,122 characters)

Photo of nickfl
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours with one finger of medium brown foam on top of an opaque, black body. The head fades away quickly and leaves average lace.

S - Caramel, licorice, and herbal notes of chicory.

T - Dark sugar notes of molasses and burnt caramel up front. Some herbal character comes out in the middle with notes of chicory, smoke, and pepper. Some smoke, coffee, and chocolate in the finish with a bit of heat in the back of the throat.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and a fairly dry finish.

D - A nice combination of dark malt, sugar, and pepper character. It is well balanced and while the heat in the finish would make it hard to drink more than one of these in a sitting it is a nice beer that would probably pair well with food. (737 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Chicago Bears shaker pint glass.

I've been impressed with the first two entries in this series, so word of this one came happily to my ears. It pours a dark garnet-sienna topped by a finger of dusty cream-white foam. The nose comprises molasses, brown sugar, chocolate syrup, light black pepper, and the faintest hint of smoked chipotle pepper. The taste brings in more of the same, with emphasis on the molasses and chocolate, and the heat from the peppers finally makes itself known. It's mild, subdued, but still noticeable. The body is a straight medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a slightly dry finish. Overall, a very nice porter, one that mixes a strong base with a nice amount of pepper (in terms of both heat and flavor). Keep 'em comin', Left Hand! (783 characters)

Photo of NeroFiddled
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Left Hand "Fade To Black Pepper Porter"
12 oz. bottle, no freshness date
$1.99 @ Joe Canal's, Egg Harbor Twp., NJ

I appears and smells like a standard porter. If there is a bit of pepper in the aroma it's not strong. I think I'm finding something, but I also believe my mind might just be suggesting it to me because I know there are peppers in there.

The flavor, however, is a bit different. It remains a fairly basic porter upfront, but some pepper flavor does become apparent at the swallow, and then lingers in the finish. There's a bit of smokiness as well, and of course, some heat. It's not overdone though, and I certainly wouldn't call it "hot"... perhaps it's got the heat of a mild salsa. It will build on your palate as you progress, however, and by mid-glass you should be feeling some tingling on your lips and in your throat.

That said, it remains quite drinkable. They've done a great job of adding a little bit of character and interest without stepping all over the rest of the beer. Nice. (1,011 characters)

Photo of jlindros
4.12/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very light fizzy head covering fades to nothing almost instantly, over pitch black thicker looking beer.

Nose brings nice roasted malts, dark chocolate, powdered cocoa, some smoked malts, light creamy porter aroma, a bit of a chewy malt and light oats, very light peppery aroma as it warms, hint of caramel and vanilla like.

Taste starts with chocolate milk, creamy lactose like with a big chocolate kick, hint of baker's chocolate and cocoa, light chalky cocoa too, with a bit of caramel and vanilla. Then a big spicy kick suddenly rings through, some pepper heat like a light cayenne stings the tongue, but not heavy, with a bit of a peppercorn like flavor. Behind all that is a hint of roast and chocolate malts, almost chewy but not quite. A bit of bitterness comes through, probably more from the malts and pepper than any hops, which brings the finish. It finishes slightly drier with lots of spicy pepper lingering, a nice heat, with some creamy chocolate and lactose lingering, hint of caramel.

Mouth is med to a bit heavier bodied, quite creamy, a spicy pepper heat, and lower but decent enough carbonation.

Overall interesting, a nice pepper flavor and heat kick without being overpowering, nice malts, plenty of chocolate and lactose like chocolate milk, very drinkable and a nice creamy. (1,303 characters)

Photo of mactrail
3.73/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Intriguing flavors and quite spicy hot. Tastes like black peppercorns at first sip, but as the heat rises you realize it's chili peppers. I wish I knew what variety, since I'm a big fan of restrained use of green chile and other peppers in beer. Rich flavors, very dark. Seems to be some deeply roasted malt and there are some hints of the usual Porter flavors, but it's quite hotted up. Long spicy nose.

Seems rather smoky after setting the bottle aside for awhile. Great flavors, low on drinkability, but thoroughly interesting. (531 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
3.92/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

picked this up at Brass Rail, enjoyed chilled from a tulip.

The color is black with an opaque clarity and thick 3 finger tan cap that settles to a crust of tiny beads. The smell is very malt focused with nice chocolate malt aroma which is nutty and has a nice element of caramel with only a hint of spice as it warms. The feel is mostly roasted with slight char and a nutty body with slight creamy and sweet middle. The carbonation is moderately high with subtle spice which seems to increase near the end of the bottle.

The taste is nice and roasty with substantial dark malt bitterness and a hint of toast crust edges adding to the subtle caramel malt and light biscuit flavor. The pepper is there if you look for it, but not so obtrusive that it stands in the way of the base. The finish is more bitter with dark malt and is fairly dry with a nice lingering heat from the pepper. The overall impression is that this is a nice beer to pair with food. I enjoyed the chance to dry this and it went well with some tacos for dinner. (1,035 characters)

Photo of russpowell
3.57/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours mahogany with a sliver of tan head.

S: Dark chocolate & chile powder. Some lacing & head retention

T: Dark chocolate, a touch of woody hop dryness, some charred grain plus a little spicy pepper kick up front. Sweet cocoa as this warms with a touch of vanilla & even more pepper kick, some dark fruit lingers at the edges too. Finishes with pepper lick, a touch of somewhat cloying carob sweetness

MF: Medium bodied, fairly firm carbonation, thins out a bit once warm, skews a touch too sweet

A chile porter with some flaws, but I enjoyed this. Would love to pair some Mexican or Indian food with this (610 characters)

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark opaque body with a light tan head with fine speckled lacing. Aroma has an earthy chile pepper noted about amongst the dark malts. Flavor has the dark roasted malt sweetness with a perfect amount of heat coming from the peppers even a hint of smokiness a really creative interesting take on the porter style. Fade to Black has been an excellent by the six pack specialty release series so far. Mouthfeel is medium to fuller bodied dry spicy finish with some linger heat that warms the belly quite a bit. Overall an enjoyable pepper/chile beer that caught me by surprise I didn't inspect the neck label to determine what style this beer was so it was a surprise with my first sip to catch the heat. (701 characters)

Photo of MasterSki
3.92/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from Binny's. Served in a Surly pint glass.

A - Hard pour rouses a thin tan foam that quickly settles to a thick collar and a few stray bubbles. Body is a dark brown with some transparency and reddish highlights to it.

S - Very smokey, with some bell pepper notes as well. As it warms up there are chocolate cake and cookie flavors present, as well as some nice roast character. Not much in the way of alcohol.

T - Taste is similar, with chocolate, caramel, cookie, and roasted malts mingling with smoke and peppers. There finish has some charry bitterness, and the aftertaste is entirely smoke.

M - Carbonation is medium-high, and a bit more than I tend to like from a porter. Finish has lots of lingering mouth-coating smoke coating and light stickiness. Medium body with a smooth texture.

D - This beer was a pleasant surprise. The pepper flavor is fairly mild and integrates with the smoked porter base. I had no problems drinking a 12oz bottle, and I'd consider grabbing this again. Definitely the best thing I've tried from Left Hand. (1,052 characters)

Photo of mdfb79
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 11/22/11 notes. Had on tap at FireWorks in Arlington, VA. Served in a pint glass.

a - Pours a jet black color with two inches of tan head and high carbonation evident. Looks pretty nice.

s - Smells of roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, smoked malts, and very light spice. Not much pepper, and a pretty nice nose.

t - Tastes of light pepper, spices, roasted malts, chocolate, vanilla, coffee. Taste is very spicey as it warms up; little too much pepper for me.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Pretty smooth.

o - Overall a pretty nice porter. A little too much pepper in the taste for me, but still interesting and good. Would give it another shot. (665 characters)

Photo of superspak
3.9/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled 10/27/2011. Pours clear almost opaque dark brown color with a thin tan head with good retention that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. A decent amount of lacing on the glass as you drink. Aromas of big chocolate, caramel, roasted malt, red pepper, chilies, light coffee, and a bit of smokiness. Very nice aromas with good balance; pretty much everything I expected. Taste of big chocolate, caramel, roasted malt, light coffee, red chilies, light smoke, and nice spiciness. Small amount of bitterness with spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, chocolate, roasted malt, and light coffee; with long lingering spicy heat on the finish. Medium body and carbonation; with a very nice creamy mouthfeel that drinks fairly smoothly. The peppers limit the drinkability a bit, but it still goes down nicely for being over 7%. Alcohol is not noticed at all, and is probably masked by some pepper heat in the back. Good balance of flavors, but the peppers take the front a bit more in the taste. Overall this is a very nice, unique, and enjoyable porter. I really enjoy spicy food, but I believe a little less pepper heat would have made it even better. (1,203 characters)

Photo of chinchill
3.65/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very fresh (tto fresh?) bottle produced 22 Sept. 11.

Appearance: Nearly black with red-brown highlights at the edges and a tan head,. Decent retention and fairly good lacing.

Smell: dark roasted malts; smokey with subtle hint of chile pepper. Surprisingly sweet and floral/fruity. Quite complex. ABV rather apparent.

Taste - roasted malts and a moderate dose of chile pepper: enough to produce a clear flavor contribution and some heat (just short of a burn). Some coffee and smoke in the lasting, but not especially enjoyable, finish.

Mouthfeel - a bit thin; heat from the chilies. Good carbonation excepting it makes the body feel lighter than it would with less carbonation.

O - certainly has character and complexity. Enough chile to put off some tasters, no doubt, but I found the combination interesting and enjoyed the added dynamics. Still, the taste got old, partly due to the smokiness, before the bottle was done. (933 characters)

Photo of dbrauneis
3.94/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a very clear (when held up to the light) dark brown to black in color with hints of red. This beer poured with very little light tan head which dissipated immediately. Very little lacing is observed.

S: Aromas of roasted malts, cocoa, and just a slight hint of the peppers.

T: Lots of upfront flavors of roasted malts followed by some hints of chocolate and pepper. Sweet and spicy but definitely on the sweeter side. The aftertaste is spicy.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly creamy.

O: Very enjoyable and definitely a beer I would want to have again. I have been pretty pleased with most of the dark beer I have had from Left Hand. Definitely different than other porters, the spiciness in the finish is really something special. (782 characters)

Photo of Mora2000
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a very dark brown to black color with a very small tan head. The aroma is classic porter with a lot of chocolate and roasted malt notes. I also get a hint of smoke in the aroma. The flavor is more of the same. There is a ton of chocolate in the flavor, as well as some roasted and nearly burnt malt. There is a little bit of heat from the peppers as the beer is swallowed and some earthy pepper notes in the flavor as well. Medium mouthfeel and low carbonation. (476 characters)

Photo of Gavage
3.92/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: black in color with a 1" tan colored head.

Smell: roasted malts, chili pepper, and a hint of chocolate.

Taste: roasted malts, licorice, dark chocolate, a chili pepper bite, and a hearty bitterness.

Mouthfeel: heavy in body. Smooth throughout with a bit of dryness late. Aftertaste is long lasting as the flavors stick to the tongue.

Overall: this is a slow sipping beer that was quite enjoyable and a bit unique. One per session will do. (455 characters)

Photo of BARFLYB
3.77/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a snifter glass. Review #1200

Fade to black volume three goes in the glass looking sorta black, more like a darker brown. A inch of loose tan foam up top leaving nothing on the glass.

Smells the part with roasted/brown malt, some light coffee roast, pepper in the nose. Traces of vanilla and some bark. Has a old porter scent with english malt.

FTB is pretty good beer, as advertised some black pepper shows up but does not kill the base which is pretty tasty as well, might be my favorite porter from left hand to date. Some roast, coffee, pepper, faint vanilla, peat.

Very smooth beer here, the pepper does not linger out for long, medium bodied, lightly carbed, no trace of the alcohol. The old porter taste stays with me the most.

All around, a solid beer that is pretty simple and very easy drinking. (828 characters)

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Fade To Black (Volume 3 - Pepper Porter) from Left Hand Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 192 ratings.