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Alaskan Smoked Porter - Alaskan Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alaskan Smoked PorterAlaskan Smoked Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

1,565 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,565
Reviews: 912
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 11.03%
Wants: 295
Gots: 256 | FT: 16
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: 1,565 | Reviews: 912 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%

The beer poured into the glass black with a ruby highlight. The head was almost brown, large, and long lasting to lace the glass.

The aroma was smoky, but not overdone. With a strong smoked sausage aromatic coupled with a nice chocolate and caramel in the background.

The flavor was malty with a strong chocolate malt flavor and a well achieved and balanced smoke contribution. The flavor also contained a noticeable caramel maltiness and a smooth coffee flavor. The beer was almost roasty but also contained a sizable hop presence.

The finish was dry with a lasting smoked impression and malt contribution. The body was medium full and well done with a creamy texture to the mouthfeel. The chocolate and smoke coupled with the coffee were well achieved in this annual favorite that is very difficult to obtain in NC unless someone snags the beer from elsewhere.

22 ounce bottle. 2005 and 6.5% ABV on label...thanks AKSmokedPorter for the wedding present.

GCBrewingCo, Jan 07, 2006
Photo of mjohn27603
5/5  rDev +19.9%

My most highly anticipated beer ever reviewed on this site. I received in my first beer trade with Lou91. I have been craving this beer for years and now is the time to finally taste! I sit here on the last night of my Christmas vacation and the first day of 2006. This might very well be my last review for beeradvocate.com.

2004 Smoked Porter

Open and pouring: Light black in color with a hint of redness or purple in the pour. Not a solid black motor oil as some stouts. A dense head that is over 3 fingers high. The head is tannish to light brown in color.

Aroma is out of this world: smoked salmon, smells reminding me of the finest rauchbiers.

Taste: What I've waited for for years. First sip revelas a sweeter tasting beer than most rauchbiers. Aftertaste reveals some charcoal and wood flavors There are several notes that unveil themselves after sitting on the tongue a while. The one interesting fact is that the porter taste comes through and is not overpowered by the smoked aspect of the beer. Still some coffee notes. The coffee and porter notes play against the smoked rauchbier notes. The first rauchbier that isn't overpowered like a liquid ashtray.

Mouthfeel is light and airy. Good thing this is made in bomber sizes.

Drinkability is high and I find myself taking in big sips and not tiny ones.

Someday I will visit Alaska until then I've had this experience.

mjohn27603, Jan 02, 2006
Photo of AlexJ
4.4/5  rDev +5.5%

Very dark brown, nearly black pour unleashes an awesome three finger head of light brown froth that is dense, long-lasting, and coats my Chouff tilip in clingy lace.

Aroma is charred dark and chocolate malts, toasted nuts, brewed coffee, fatty bacon smoke, and scorched caramel.

Flavor begins with bittersweet chocolate and light coffee, roasty and nutty malts, great smoke flavor that reminds me of good smoked salmon(the smoke, not the fish). There's a surprisingly bitter pine hop finish that leaves chewy smoke on my tongue.

Body is big, oily, chewy, and extremely smooth. The smoke is subtle enough to really make this an easy drinking beer that would pair famously with BBQ food.

AlexJ, Dec 31, 2005
Photo of Calico
3.3/5  rDev -20.9%

A credible beer, a good porter, a good smoked beer, but I'm not sure why this is getting such high reviews. Maybe we just got an old bottle, but this beer left me with a terribly bitter aftertaste that just would not go away. Admittedly smoked beers are not my favorite style, but my husband, who loves smoked beers (such as Ithaca Gorges Smoked Porter) concurred with my opinion. For me, this one is not one worth going out of my way for.

Calico, Dec 30, 2005
Photo of Iguana
3.93/5  rDev -5.8%

Appearence - This one looks like a stout when poured, a nice black with a small head that lingers around for a long time.

Smell - Smell's a bit malty which is quite nice, nothing that really stood out too much though.

Taste - Taste is a nice malty nutty smoked flavor. Really pleasent to drink.

Mouthfeel - Feels really smooth and creamy, by far the smoothest porter I have ever had.

Drinkability - This one goes down really well, a really solid porter all around. I will definitly have more of this one.

Iguana, Dec 26, 2005
Photo of merlin48
4.15/5  rDev -0.5%

At long last, I got to try this American classic thanks to trades with BigLove and waldowin. 2005 edition in a 22 oz bottle pours an ebony black body with a two finger, cocoa brown head that retains very well. Profuse patchy lace adorns the English pint glass.

Aroma is superb. There is a charred wood note from burnt campfire logs, smoked salmon aromas, and some subdued notes of chocolate and coffee. Nice!

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, thinning a bit as it reaches room temperature. Moderate carbonation works well.

Taste has lots of smoked alder wood and smoked salmon flavors. Coffee and chocolate are prominent enough to let you know that this is a quality porter. Grassy and earthy hops bitterness adds excellent balance. Smoked almonds add a nice touch.

Wood smoked malts produce an excellent beer when executed as well as this one. Similar to the Bamberg rauchbiers, but the smoky note here produces smoked salmon characteristics, as opposed to the barbequed meat noted in the German rauchbiers. The smokiness is also a bit more retrained here, resulting in a very good drinkability. Definitely, the class of American smoked beers and worthy of its reputation.

merlin48, Dec 22, 2005
Photo of TurdFurgison
3.9/5  rDev -6.5%

Had on tap at Naja's in Redondo Beach. Dark brown color, thin beige head.

Smelled like salami. Strange smell for a beer, but it works in a strange way. This was the first time I tried it, and most likely the last time as well. Unique but not my style.

TurdFurgison, Dec 17, 2005
Photo of acoatley
4.72/5  rDev +13.2%

Aroma: Smokey wood, salt, chocolate, light coffee

App: Opaque black, amber edges, thin head

Mouth Feal: Crisp, dry, appropriatley light, definately unique

Flavour: Light smoke, choclate, buttery finish that I really enjoy, can definately taste dthe characteristics of the wood

Over all: just a great beer

acoatley, Dec 17, 2005
Photo of neonbrown82
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

After hearing so much about this beer I finally have the opportunity to try it. This is a very robust porter, as it pours to a nearly black color with a nice fluffy tan head that subsides quite quickly. Not much lacing.

The smell is good. The smoke is actually quite mild. The malts are quite rich and sweet with a nice roast, and of course, plenty of smoke.

The taste is rich and chocolatey with some nice roast and smoke. Has a nice sweetness to it as well. This is a very well rounded porter. I can see why it is the most hyped smoked beer around. The more I drink it, the more I begin to love it. Easily the best and most balanced smoked beer I've ever had, but don't worry: it's not for wussies either.

The mouthfeel is velvety smooth and rich. Only has a light bitterness, and the finish doesn't provide a lasting sulphuric flavor like so many other smoked beers I've had. Easily the most drinkable smoked beer on the planet! Believe the hype!

neonbrown82, Dec 09, 2005
Photo of warriorsoul
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%

22oz. bottle enjoyed thanks to BigLove.
Pours a dark brown, almost black in color with no light passing thru.
A full finger of tan head with decent lacing...a thin layer of head sticks around for the duration of the pint.
Aroma is full of smoke and gets all the attention at this point. A slight sweetness is added in with a lingering nose.
Taste is a nice balance of chocolate, coffee and sweetness....a huge smoked profile and unlike any other "smoked" style I have experienced.
Mouthfeel is a tad thin, but the carbonation is perfect for the style.
Very drinkable at just over 6%...the bomber disappears in no time.
Alcohol very well hidden and while not my favorite style, very enjoyable.

warriorsoul, Dec 08, 2005
Photo of KroMagnon
4.1/5  rDev -1.7%

Black beer with moderate tan head. The aroma is immediately smoky but you get some roastiness too. The alder smoke is not as heavy-handed as say hickory smoke or even beechwood (isn't that what rauchmalt comes from?)...it blends nicely with the roastiness. The flavor is good:. There is the smokiness, a little malty sweetness, and then a good dose of roasted bitterness and some hop bitterness too. This is well-done and a clear American classic, but the mouthfeel seemed a little thin and I think the beer could have been a tad more aggressive wrt maltiness and/or malt complexity without hurting the smoke profile at all.

KroMagnon, Dec 02, 2005
Photo of assurbanipaul
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

2001 Vintage, acquired in a recent BIF. Pours a deep dark brown with a thin brown head. Aroma is black malts, red wine and a heavy alcohol odor. Head disappears quickly.

Taste is rich cocoa, dark roasted malts, some cold Indonesian coffee. A light smokey flavor floats through, a gentile sweetness. Charcoal, more smoke, maybe some sort of cheese and smoked meat, traces of red wine. Reminds me of a campfire in the mountains, the way the food gets black and charred. There's some bitter hops circling in the background but they're hardly noticed.

Mouthfeel is medium, not as heavy as it looks. Finish is clean, a little lingering. It's not just a smoked beer; this is a very good porter infused very well with a slight smokey essense.

I'm surprised at how well this holds up with aging. This sample is four years old and other than a slight degradation in the aroma (which vanishes before the glass is empty), it could have been brewed yesterday. I would not advocate aging this beer. It is near-perfect; drink it immediately. Time won't improve it.

assurbanipaul, Dec 01, 2005
Photo of FirstMan
4.83/5  rDev +15.8%

I first had this beer lo many years ago at a little diner counter down in Pioneer Square in Seattle. My trusted friend and then-beer-guide Knuckles insisted that give it a try. Up until that point, every smoked beer I had tried had been a stunning disaster and I was really really skeptical.

"I'm really going to hate it," I said.

"Shut up and drink the goddam beer," Knuckles said.

"OK, but watch your language, for chrissakes." I said.

And the rest is history. I've been in passionate love with this beer since that first sip. I covet every single bottle I can get my hands on.

Pours black and thick from the bottle, with the head rising only after the pour has finished - a soft, bubbly mocha layer the eases down into a wispy ghost across the top with a ring of uneven bubbles around the edge of the glass. Looking down into the glass is like looking up at the sky on moonless night - little inklings of clouds drifting around, but barely there. oooo alliteration...

One thing I love about this beer is how subtle the smoke is. This is especially noticable in the nose, as there isn't a big smoke note. It's present, but mainly you get a somewhat woody smell intermingled with molasses. My family is from North Carolina originally, and many of my ancestors worked tobacco. One of my favorite smells as a child was walking through the curing barns were tobacco leaves were drying or being bailed. There's a little bit of that aroma here.

When you're camping in the early fall, there's a point late in the evening when the night sky is clear, the air is crisp, and the fire has died down to a glowing ember that occasionally pops and crackles. Everything seems quiet and right with the world, staring into that fire. This beer tastes like that moment.

One of the great beers of the world.

FirstMan, Nov 30, 2005
Photo of AltTrinker
4.33/5  rDev +3.8%

This 2005 bottling in a 651ml bottle pours a deep reddish brown crowned by a coffee colored head. The head gradually disappates over 5 minutes with a moderate lacy residue clinging to the glass.

The nose gives a distinctly smokey aroma that reminds me of a wood fire on a cold winter evening. The smokiness is blended with a dark malty roastiness that keeps the smokiness in check and keeps it from being overpowering.

The taste is a wonderful blend of rich roasted malt, smokiness, with bits of chocolate and a little amaretto. The finish has a gentle hop bitterness that lingers well.

The mouthfeel is moderate that suits this beer well. I love Rauchbeers, and this brew does an outstanding job of giving a distinct smokiness that is well balanced by the maltiness and allows the complexities to come through. This is a delightfull beer to enjoy on a fall evening while eating a hardy dinner.

AltTrinker, Nov 23, 2005
Photo of delicious
4.38/5  rDev +5%

Poured from a 1 Pint 6 Fl. oz. bottle. Labeled 2005.

The head displays a gradient of white to brown. The beer is dark and opaque until the very edge of the glass, where it turns brown-red.
This beer smells of lovely wood-smoked coffee beans.
The flavor is slightly roasted and smokey, with a light but very noticeable mouthfeel. A breath out the nose after swallowing brings a coffee aroma. This beer gets smokier as it warms, gently lulling the drinker into a state of well-being, like a soft-spoken playboy in a padded leather chair in front of a roaring fireplace.

delicious, Nov 23, 2005
Photo of sloejams
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%

I am easily discouraged by smoked beers. Often it the smoking is too intense and it feels like I’m drinking a chimney and oddly enough, I don’t like drinking chimneys. Hesitantly, I try the latest batch of Alaskan Brewing Co’s Smoked Porter.

It pours darks as night, with the slightest tan head. It’s a foreboding darkness in liquid form. The smokiness is evident from the first scent. It’s not subtle but it’s also not intense. Slight maltiness breathes through the powerful smoke. The taste is very unique. Of course, the smokiness is the first thing that hits you: almost a woodstove cedar flavor that could warm a ski lodge. The flavor lingers. It takes a few sips to get find enjoyment, but then it’s a very pleasant porter. This is the finest smoked beer I’ve had. If you fear getting oversmoked like I did, give this a try. It might change your perception.

sloejams, Nov 21, 2005
Photo of DogFood11
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Pours a deep brown to black with an tan head that falls to a thin cover and partial lacing. Fine carbonation.

Obviously there is a pretty large segment of smoked aroma, It's not as if your next to a bonfire though, more like some wet cedar used to smoke a chinook salmon. Subtle but robust enough to make you crave it. Malts were very evident and gave it a creamy smooth mouthfeel.

I think the best thing about this beer is they didn't overdo it. A well crafted porter with a solid smoked center.
Price per quality? ehhhh its good but c'mon.

DogFood11, Nov 18, 2005
Photo of Dukeofearl
3.95/5  rDev -5.3%

Pours a deep dark oily brown, with a tan-brown head that sticks around only long enough to proclaim its beauty. Very nice looking beer.

Aroma includes smoky, chocolaty, coffee tones that are very pleasant . A slight sweetness in the aroma, not much, but just there to tease.

The flavor is also smoky, rich, full of roasted malt goodness. This is a complex beer.

Mouthfeel is very full and tells you that this is a very good beer. It's the best part fo the beer.

Overall, this style isn't my favorite, and so I'm trying to review on the style. Based on that, this beer is definetely a winner, even though I'm not likely to spend a lot of time with this beer. But I appreciate what it is, and that is good.

Dukeofearl, Nov 15, 2005
Photo of waldowin
4.8/5  rDev +15.1%

Poured from a tall 22oz bottle, labeled "2005"

Pours a dark, dark roasted brown. Black in the glass, very faint ruby highlights at the edges when held to a light. Dark brown head forms quickly and clumpily, and fades in a few minutes to nothing.

Smells of dark malts, bananas, smoke, roasts, and anise. Would actually be a good smell for a barbeque, almost. Thick and earthy smell.

Taste is complex. Starts with raisins and dark malts, fades to cherries, bananas, and roasts, and finishes with a slight aftertaste of heavy roast. Smoke is pressent throughout. Definitely the best brew I've had from Alaskan.

Mouthfeel is huge. Thick, chunky, and lightly carbonated. You could chew on this stuff.

Very tasty, not too filling, and not too rich. If it were available regularly, it'd replace Black Butte as my daily drinker, even with the higher price tag.

waldowin, Nov 12, 2005
Photo of OStrungT
4.13/5  rDev -1%

This beer pours a very dark brown with a light brown head. The head fades quickly leaving a thin layer of foam and a good lacing. It smells smokey. It also smells like wood. The first time I had this beer I thought was like a campfire. I still think it smells like that. Not much hop aroma. I can detect a roasted malty aroma, but just slightly. This beer tastes strongly like smoked wood. Almost like I have a fire log in my mouth. Only not quite so strange, or gross. Behind the smokey wood flavor, I detect some maltyness. As with the aroma, I dont taste much in the way of hops. This beer has a bold aggressive smokey flavor. It is full bodies. It leaves a woody, smokey aftertaste. It is carbonated very well. This beer is very good, but I dont know if it would make a great session beer. Although the alcohol content is not too high, the aggressive flavor might not agree with a night of drinking. This beer is definately a winner. Do not pass it up.

OStrungT, Nov 12, 2005
Photo of juzy
4.78/5  rDev +14.6%

2005 Alaskan Smoked Porter
released recently

This beauty poured dark and forboding, the color of bittersweet chocolate, topped with a thin, loose, tan head.
The smells of alder wood, not overpowering though. Very gentle on the nose. A fair amount of dark-roast coffee tingling my nose "buds" .

Anticipating that first drink, I finally take it. Mmmmm. Toasty, mellow alder-smoked malts mingling with a rich coffee bitterness. Smooth and delicious.

It's a medium bodied beverage with good legs for an ABV% of 6.5

We enjoyed this with homemade Boston baked beans, bbq beef brisket, and brown bread fresh from the steamer. The molasses in the beans and bread echo and slightly intensify that same flavor in the beer. This was a great food and beer pairing and I look forward to this one again.
We also had this at Cafe Amsterdam, on tap, with a soft goat cheese, slices of French baguette, kalamatta olives and grapes. This, too, was a good match. In this case we are talking about a contrast pairing, rather than the complimenting pairing with the beans.

This beer is really quite remarkable with food.
Wicked good.

juzy, Nov 06, 2005
Photo of bultrey
4.7/5  rDev +12.7%

I don't know what else to say about this beer except that it's fantastic. I've had it on draft, and this review is based on a 2004 vintage bottle, but it doesn't really matter -- it's firkin fantastic no matter what. It is so goddman creamy and chocolaty, but then the subtle yet ever-present smoke adds a haunting depth of flavor that nothing else could provide. Add this to the fact that it's fairly well-hopped, and the balance of this beer is mind-blowing. A legend and deservedly so -- go out and try this, even if you don't think you like smoked beers.

bultrey, Oct 31, 2005
Photo of SteveO1231
4.33/5  rDev +3.8%

Picked a 22oz. bomber of the 2005. MCAS Miramar has an ass load of em'.

Poured an opaque black, dark purple/maroon highlights. Thick froathy tan head. Nice lacing.

Sweet roasted malt scent, nice smokey aroma. Rich nutty smell.

Perfect sweetness, tastes of roasted malts and of coffee followed by a light bitterness and a great dry smoke flavor in the finish. The smoke sticks to the palate as if I were eating charcole briquets

Very drinkable, nice smoke porter.

I think I might merinade a steak in this.

Cheers!

SteveO1231, Oct 30, 2005
Photo of Sammy
4.05/5  rDev -2.9%

2004 edition. Interesting smokey taste and aroma from the unique wood used, well carbonated, perhaps a tad too much. Salt. Intense. Bit of bitterness in finish. Good with grilled meat and fish. Black of course. Quite a nice one and an easy, medium mouthfeel drink.

Sammy, Oct 27, 2005
Photo of grindcore666
4.7/5  rDev +12.7%

Black as night. A nice lookin medium tan head, doesnt live very long, but leaves nice bubbly lace.

Aroma showcases coffee, chocolate, caramel, charcoal, and butterscotch.

A thick and nicely carbonated chocolate coffee chunk. Melts ever so briskly. The finish is roasted and mildly hoppy just the way I like it. I couldnt ask for much more than this in a Porter.

grindcore666, Oct 17, 2005
Alaskan Smoked Porter from Alaskan Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 1,565 ratings.