Alaskan Smoked Porter - Alaskan Brewing Co.

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Alaskan Smoked PorterAlaskan Smoked Porter

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1,690 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,690
Reviews: 921
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 10.79%
Wants: 308
Gots: 298 | FT: 17
Brewed by:
Alaskan Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
The dark, robust body and pronounced smoky flavor of this limited edition beer make it an adventuresome taste experience. Alaskan Smoked Porter is produced in limited "vintages" each year on November 1 and unlike most beers, may be aged in the bottle much like fine wine.

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 10-18-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,690 | Reviews: 921 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mdwalsh
3.8/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got as part of MNBA Secret Santa. WOOT!

A: Grey beige head pours 2-3 fingers but fades fast to less than one, leaving a nice little ring of lace. The beer is very very black, maybe slightly brown/red when held up to the light. It's very nice.

S: Smokey. I always find these things to be a little fakey smelling, but I'll say this is the smoked porter that to me smells the most like smoked malt. Thing is I don't get much else if anything at all other than the smoke. Not even a malty sweetness, and no alcohol or hops. Maybe some light cigar or tobacco?

T: Smoked meat, which actually works pretty nice here. The key is that it's smoked meat, like bacon or ham, not grilled meat like steak. Also very different from roasted malt, there is no burnt or coffee or chocolate flavors, just the smoke.

M: A little thin, but all in all better than some smoked beers I've had. I'd like some more texture to accompany this beer so it didn't feel so much like I was drinking liquid smoke.

D: This could work very well with certain meals, it's not really something I would want to drink a lot of on its own.

Photo of afausser
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

An 06 bottle of this shared by a very generous BA at the Sexual Chocolate release this weekend.

Poured into a Brooklyn tulip.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown. There's a tiny bit of head but not too much, as well as some slight lacing. I think that this is probably the product of it sitting open for a couple hours (judging at least from the other reviews) so I'll give it the benefit of the doubt.

Smell: smells of smoke, bacon, and honey baked ham. Notes of maple syrup are strongly present. The smoke note itself is almost identical to smoked salmon. Extremely woody and reminiscent of a campfire. Very nicely blended.

Taste: Unsurprisingly, a smoky taste, though it's not the wash-your-mouth-out-with-listerine type of taste. This one is quite smooth and well blended. The meat notes are largely not present in the taste, and there's a slight hint of coffee. I'm wondering if the lack of abrasiveness in the smoke is an original quality of the beer, or if the age has knocked some of it out and blended it in better with the malts.

Mouthfeel: Pretty smooth. Not too much in the way of carbonation, but I think this one had been sitting out open for a bit outside in the line. There's a slight aftertaste, but it's pretty light. Nice medium body (though slightly on the watery side, albeit thick (?!) water) and easy to drink, though not terribly impressive for a 6.5%.

Drinkability: Not hard to drink at all--not even one to sip, really. Drank a glass of this this over the course of an hour or so waiting to get my bottles. Pretty good--not sure I'd seek out another in a trade, but I'd definitely drink it again if the chance came up. As a disclaimer, I'm not really a huge fan of the smoky taste and haven't had too many smoked beers, anyway, so this is a new style I'm getting into. That said, seeing as the taste wasn't particularly smoky in and of itself, I'm not sure that this particularly affected my review :)

Photo of augustgarage
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2008 vintage. Poured from a 22oz bomber into my Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Burgundy highlights are revealed when held up to a strong light - like blood beneath the skin, transported by small cells/bubbles otherwise hidden by the seal brown body. Four fingers of light khaki foam boil down to a creamy cap leaving countless abstractions in lace behind.

Red alder in the nose - plenty of smoke that is full of savory notes - influenced by its origins, I am reminded somewhat of smoked salmon. A bit of brown bread and some faint maple sugar and light cherry-ish esters round out the nose.

Lightly smoked malt, smoked salami, faint caramel, burnt toast, a touch of bitter chocolate dropped in medium-roast coffee and bacon drippings. Any hops that might have been present when fresh have vanished with a little age. Medium-dry finish.

Medium-light bodied, pretty highly carbonated, with a light astringency from all the smoke and roast malt.

I imagine this would pair well with a variety of cheeses (cheddar, gouda, edam?) - but I don't have any on hand at the moment.

Very good, but it falls just a little short of greatness when compared to something like the more potent Sue (Yazoo's cherry-wood smoked porter)...

Photo of ATGHomebrewer
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: dark brown, not quite black. when held to the light a bit of light penetrates the edges. beige head. lacing holds up pretty strong.

S: smoky, woody, peaty, malty... in that order. outstanding.

T: starts with a smoky, peaty taste, and finishes with more of a burnt, ashy malty taste. sharp, but not necessarily from the hops.

M: light body and higer than expected carbonation, but works well for the beer.

D: intense on the smoke and peat taste. if you like those, then very drinkable on a crisp day.

Photo of BDJake
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- impervious black, with chunks of light brown head that laces awesomely and sticks around

S- alder smoke slapping you up front (a NW favorite) with dark ass malt backbone

T- large woody smokiness, with deep malts

M- medium body, light but fitting carbonation, lingering but pleasant aftertaste

D- excellent, awesome example of the innovation on my favorite style

Photo of kaseydad
4.13/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Great label!

Pint glass pour with a black ale produced with some nice burgundy streaks through it as well. Creamy beige head with major lacing. Campfire smoke, bittersweet chocolate and espresso aroma. Flavorishes! Huge smoke-filled swallow with some great bitterness on the buds after the swallow. Reminds me of a smoked salmon for crying out loud. The smoke flavor is amazing and truly worth the matter the cost. At "only" 6.5% this is extremely easy on the stomach and multiples are easily consumed. Flavor could get tiresome after a few though.

Overall I feel I misjudged this beer. I first had it many years ago and was put off by the flavor. Over the years my palate has changed and this is truly a world class beer that deserves all it's rewards...and then some. Excellent porter and an amazing beer all-around.

Photo of AdvocateFan
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Have had this sample of the 2006 vintage ASP in my possession for over 3 years now... For at least the past 2.5 years, it has been in the fridge, but before that was being kept at above cellar temps, as high as 85oF but usually in the mid-70s for say, 4-6 months. Major demerits for me. Pours just shy of pitch black in my snifter and is topped by a permanent creamy brown head that fades somewhat but always retains a cover and very thick, clingy, just-a-bit-too-wet-and-thick-to-properly-lace collar (it sort of melts down the side of the glass as the beer is consumed.) Big, sweet, rich, robust notes of leather, dark fruit, carob, coffee-soaked bubblegum, Jolt cola, with all of these wrapped in a sturdy blanket of smoke and campfire goodness. Some meaty, salty notes as well. Condensed maple syrup. The faintest tang of citrus struggles to escape, but is coated in the heavy tar and treacle notes that anchor this beer as close to the earth as possible. The beer is much less intense on the palate than I expected based on the nose; the nose is heavy, almost overbearing, thick and virtually like liquid in the nostrils--you feel it filling your nose, like drowning. But the flavor, while big and rich, is not nearly as heavy or imposing as I thought it would be. All the hallmarks of a robust porter, with subtle spikes of cola, leather, maduro cigar/tobacco, black cherries, and a clean woodsy note, distinct from the also present smokiness. Fresh balsa. Burning sea driftwood (think salty smoke.) The finish is gentle and kind--a comforting level of smoke that sits so well in the mix of this very tasty beer. Never gets to coffee in the flavor, despite what one might expect for the style. Instead, it's bark and billows. As it warms, the alcohol speaks up a bit on the nose, sharpening some of the acridity and coaxing out the edginess of the citrus hop notes, and on the palate evoking notes of dark rum. I am not disappointed by this beer--let me be clear. But it is not as complex as I expected. Sort of the hype syndrome--where you hear or read how great a movie (or beer) is and then when you see (drink) it, you can't be completely objective and rate it lower than if you'd just waltzed into the theater (or bar) not knowing what to expect. Can't help but think that if I just stumbled across this without knowing from day one (and every day since, as it's been in my possession for over 3 years--calling to me as I fought temptation) that it was the holy grail of smoked porters, that I'd have flipped shit over how awesome it was. Instead I enjoy it as a great beer that is pleasing, but is not rousing my inherent beer geek fanaticism. This is not a proclamation of overratedness. Far from it. This is great beer that I'm pleased to have had the opportunity to try. Thanks to Jabocu for the trade/sample (all those years ago!)

Photo of slasher007
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to mora2000 for sharing this bottle.

Pours a very deep and dark jet black color. Nose is roasted dark malts and chocolate with a bit of smoke. Taste has a strong smoky wood and charcoal flavor with roasted malts, dark fruits, and bitter coffee.Medium mouthfeel with low carbonation. Find this to be quite different from Stone's Smoked Porter but it was interesting though.

Photo of Mora2000
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was my second time to try this beer and I wanted to see if it was as good as I remembered.

2009 Vintage sampled 1/18/10.

Pours dark brown with an off-white head. The aroma is lots of smoke with some roasted malts. The flavor is heavy omn the smoke but you also get some standard porter characteristics like dark malts. Medium mouthfeel and low carbonation. I really like this beer, but if you are not into smoked beers, this is probably not the beer for you.

Photo of Chambic
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

01.14.10 at City Beer Store

A: dark and opqaue

S: love the smoked salmon scent

T: almonds bring out an almond-like flavor. This beer always makes me wish I had a huge honey ham in front of me. Seems like it's perfect for a Christmas feast.

M: beautifully malty, with a milkshake-like quality

D: love this stuff -- really need to try it with the ham someday

Photo of barleywinefiend
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2007 version: Poured a very dark brown with a nice tan head with decent carbonation. The smoke flavor was very detectable, even on the pour I smelled a little. Smelled of perhaps a smoked meat, some coffe and chocolate behind the smoke. Tasted the same as the smell. Smoke behind some chocoloate and coffee. Thinner bodied but a very good Smoked Porter indeed!!!

Photo of jeffjeff1
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a christmas present from my fiance.

Appearance- black color, thin head

Smell- wonderful aroma, smoke, my fiance said heavily marinated venison

Taste- smoke, roasted malt, bit of molasses

Mouthfeel- full bodied

Drinkability- Excellent, I loved it. Very nice smoked porter

Photo of wknight167
3.9/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Apearance - Pours Black with red highlights and a one finger tan head that fades quickly into a crown and leaves minimal lacing.

Nose- Woody and smokey, reminiscent of bacon and tobacco. Roast and chololate malts are also evident.

Palate- The smoke kicks you in the mouth, but lets up just enough to let the malts show through. Roasty, chocolate and dark fruits all present in this area. Finally, the herbal hops seem to accentuate the smoke.

Mouthfeel- Full bodied and medium carbonation.

Drinkability- I can't see myself drinking these all night.

Photo of cpetrone84
3.93/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 bottle aged for about a year. Going into this I am not a big "smokey" flavor guy, but I will try and be unbiased as this is a smoked beer and that is the intent.

A-deep black in color with hues of red showing through, it pours a tan colored head that dissipates quickly and leaves no lacing on the glass

S-a smokey wood aroma domintates the nose with a touch of milk chocolate and coffee trying to come through but just overpowered by the smell. Just not interesting, but it is big and I like big.

T-huge smokiness, i feel like i'm at a campfire and the wind just blew all the smoke from the fire in my face. after the smokiness settles a little (it stays present throughout but becomes less dominant as it moves towards the back) some sweet caramel malt comes in with dark fruits balancing it out. dark cherry, plum and fig.

M-it is smooth and creamy, medium body, with a lot of carbonation. it is slick on the back of the throat.

D-i am not a fan but the intent is to bring smokiness and it does, it has a nice taste of sweet malts with a solid mouthfeel.

Photo of sprucetip
4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes. Had this many, many times on tap, but this an 08 vintage in the bottle, aged a bit over a year.

Pours black but with ruby highlights when backlit. Moderate mocha head has decent retention, but no lacing.

SMELL is mainly strong, oily, alder wood smoke. Some malty sweetness underneath is found easily with a swirl.

TASTE Like the nose but with sweet malty base more prominent. Though smoky is the dominant feature, very smooth and well balanced. Some mild bitterness in the end. Smoky flavors come on strong again in the finish.

FEEL slick, oily, and moderately viscous, medium/full body.

OVERALL very easy drinking if you like the style. This was my stand by at the Red Onion Saloon when the had it on tap, but now that they don't, it's an occasional treat.

Photo of rfgetz
4.2/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a near black, deep dark brown with nice rich, creamy dark khaki colored head. Great retention, lacing sticky at the top of the glass, then very little towards the end. Scent is of earth, smoke, wood with a background of dark roasted cocoa and coffee beans. Flavor is a reverse of the scent with rich dark roasted coffee and cocoa beans up front backed by a wonderfully earthy smoke and wood flavor. Body is light for the style with some grainyness to it. Excellent beer from Alaskan and a pleasure to drink a beer with such an earthy charachter. Many smoked beers end up tasting like pure liquid smoke or even worse, bacon. This beer got it perfect.

Photo of cratez
4.1/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650ml bomber purchased by my dad at Khoury's Fine Wine & Spirits in Las Vegas, Nevada. Appearance is blackish and stout-like with a bubbly, dark brown cap. A few dots of lacing on the glass, good head retention. Smell is faint, charcoaled smoke and leather, not as strong as a baltic porter. Black chocolate in the taste, some roasted malt, and burnt berry fruit. Big blast of spice and bitterness from the hops, followed by smoke and ash flavours. The chalky, parched aftertaste has very little sweetness. Mouthfeel is velvety and oily. Smooth dryness in the finish. A satisfying brew with a little less character than I expected. Good stuff overall.

Photo of Tiklmelmo
3.48/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz bottle of 2008, bought from the brewery while on a cruise in Sept, and drank in Dec '09 from a large tulip glass.

A - Rich dark brown, nearly black in the glass with a surprising amount of thick caramel colored head that lingers for a while and clings to the glass.

S - Woody, earthy, smokey nose with hints of tobacco and chocolate. After the first sip or two the smoke is much less dominant, and there are some hints of prune/dark fruit.

T - Smokey wood flavor right up front, but that mellows quickly into roasted malts, dark chocolate and again hints of dark fruit. Nice flavors at the front of the palate, but feels like something is missing by the time it gets to the back of the mouth. Slightly bitter aftertaste that's not quite unpleasant but at the same time leaves a little to be desired.

M - Moderately carbonated and a little thinner than I imagined it would be, with almost a bit of slickness to it.

D - The smokey slickness makes this a feel like a sipper, but I'm having a tough time finding enough complexity to sip a whole 22oz bottle to myself.

Overall, it's a pretty good representation of a style I'm not always in love with (And the style that contains a few of my least favorite beers).

This is something I could see sitting in front of a raging fire in a log cabin and enjoying. But, it's not something I'd go out of my way to drink on a regular basis.

I would also like to try it fresh to see how the year or so worth of age this bottle has on it has affected it.

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Vintage 2009 / 22oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

Very dark brown with a khaki colored head that fell to a light layer but still left it's fair share of lacing.
Smoke upfront on the aroma, the 2nd whiff brought on roasted malt and coffee aromas.
Smokey & roasty & yummy in my tummy.
Medium/Full bodied with a creamy, smooth feel.
It went down nice & easy.

Vintage 2008 - This year old vintage held up well and there wasn't any difference from the '09.

Vintage 1998 - This 11 year old vintage was a complete mess, it lost all the smokiness and roasted flavors. It tasted like soy sauce and after a few sips got introduced to my sewer system.

Photo of AdmiralDiaz
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

2009 bomber poured into snifter.

A: Pours a dark brown with a light-medium brown head about 2". Head doesn't have much retention, but leaves some lacing.

S: Little bit of roastiness, very earthy with hints of dark fruit. It actually smells fairly sweet, not what I expected. Overall smell is quite light.

T: Just a little bit of smokiness to start with turning into roasted malts with some earthy tones on top of a little bit of fruity sweetness, which stay till the finish, which leaves a small smokey/roasted taste. It's a little weak IMO, but still tastes good.

M&D: Medium carbonation levels with a light body. Very drinkable, the alcohol doesn't come out much and being fairly light a bomber is fine for one person.

Overall: I'm a little let down, it's not over-rated, since my rating will be about average, it's was just over-hyped for me. It's a very good beer, just didn't live up to what I had heard about it.


Photo of Jayli
4.13/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed 11/28

A: This beer pours an opaque jet black with a 1/4 inch of light brown head that recedes almost immediately. Spotty lacing is left on the glass.

S: Nose is of smoked and oak notes, burnt malts, chocolate and a touch of toffee.

T: Taste starts with a surprising sweetness - caramel and toffee with a hint of cherry. Roasted and toasted malts really come through and dominate the middle switching in to a far more burnt malt, slight hints of bitter chocolate and smokey campfire flavoring caps this beer off.

M: Lighter side of medium body, medium carbonation, crisp up front with a creamier finish.

D: I love smoked beers, this is nicely blended and rather tasty. Goes down easily, lighter body and ABV make this a beer that I would sit with for a bit.

Photo of csmiley
3.9/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to colts9016 for the bottle

A - Pours almost black in color. Some dark brown seeps through at the edges when held to the light. The light tan head tops out at around a quarter inch with an aggressive pour. It's gone in a minute or two and ends up as a thick ring around the top of the beer. Some lace is left behind in the glass.

S - Smoke definitely dominates the aroma. Some charcoal comes in pretty quick too. It really comes across as one dimensional. Tho other aromas are just too hard to pick out for my liking. There could be some bittersweet chocolate that comes in at the very end. Along with a light cherry note. Not bad but nothing like what I was expecting.

T - Once again, smoke takes the lead. It's strong but seems a little more under control than the aroma lets on. Some of the typical porter flavors are able to make themselves known at this point. I think they kicked up the charcoal flavor coming from the malt to balance out the big smokey profile. It works. Some baker's chocolate comes through toward the end. Also, a little bit of dark fruit kind of comes in and finishes it up. As it warms, some coffee works itself in as well. Might be instant coffee but it's coffee nonetheless.

M - Medium bodied with a light carbonation that keeps it smooth overall. Finish is smokey and dry. No surprise there. It hangs on to the palate for a little while.

D - Drinkability is good. Alcohol is hard to pick up which helps it go down a little easier. The smoke is strong in this one. If that's your thing, you'll like this. If not, let it age a while or drink it pretty warm. Some complexity comes through as it warms. A 22 ounce bottle seems about right for this one. It gives the opportunity to experience the full range of flavors going on here. All in all, the Smoked Porter is a good smoked beer and I was stoked to get one from a fellow western BA member. Now I'm intrigued as to how the flavors would develop over time...

Photo of LibraryTom
4.63/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2009 bottle

My review may be a bit slanted due to the fact that I drank this with a very good batch of chili I had let rest one day in the fridge, but nonetheless, I loved this one.

Pours an intense black, but she reveals a bit about her body in the pour. Not overly done at all. Hints of singed mahogany skirt the edges.

Nose is a bit of smoke, but not a whole lot else. But then again, I was eating chili.

Really beautiful smoke character mingles with sweet, nutty malt, which clears the pallette remarkably well. Full bodied, but never too big, making this beer very sessionable I should think. I know I finished the beer well before the chili, and regretted not getting a second bottle.

And I must say.. Perfect with good, sweet and spicy chili.

Kudos Alaskan

Photo of mikecharley
3.78/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to a generous BA for this 07 bomber as an extra, of all things.

Pours a shade darker than cola. Thin tan head recedes quickly. Spotches of intermittent lacing. Not really that remarkable.

Nose is of smoky meats, burnt malts, and campfire. The hops are pretty much non-existant here. The smokiness is nice.

Taste is really smoky. Some peat, smokey wood, carmel malts, and smoked pork (which really dominates). If your in the mood for liquid smoke, this is exactly what you should reach for.

This is a medium, to full bodied beer. I would like to see a touch more fullness, but it is good nonetheless.

D: I'm just thinking that although this is pretty good, if you werent prepared for the onslaught of smoke, you would be in trouble with an entire bomber.

Photo of trbergman
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


22oz bottle poured in several stages into a tulip.

A - I clearly wasn't delicate enough with the pour, because I initially got a tiny bit of beer and three inches of head. The beer is deep brown, almost black; the head, light tan, rocky, and low density. As the foam recedes it leaves intricate patterns of lace on the glass.

S - Acrid, a bit of char, smoke still quite apparent even though the bottle is two years old. This must have been incredibly smoky when fresh. Some wood and earth linger in the background, with chocolate at the limit of my perception. There's also a hint of maple syrup. The overall aroma is similar to a Vosges bacon chocolate bar.

T - Given the nose, the taste is something of a letdown. Still reasonably good, but lacking the depth I'd expected. Smoke, toast, chocolate, some maple. Subtle hop bitterness complements the roasted character of the malt, but doesn't steal the show.

M - Medium body, far too much carbonation.

D - It's definitely interesting, and I'd like to try it again when I get the opportunity, but it's not really doing a lot for me right now.


I think the previous bottle may have been infected. I eventually got another bottle, this one of the 2009 vintage, and it's drinking very well. Less savory/meaty than I remember, but still plenty of smoky goodness. Mouthfeel is still a little thinner than I'd like, but good.

Alaskan Smoked Porter from Alaskan Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 1,690 ratings.