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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 speter
4.18/5  rDev +0.2%

22-oz bomber brought back by my wife from a recent trip to Alaska!

A: Pours a deep auburn that is effectively black with a ruby highlight when held to the light. Great carbonation upon pour that unfortunately didn't last for the full 22-oz session.

S: Soft smoke over rich chocolate and coffee malt.

T: The smoke is definitely there, but it's much more subtle than a Bamberger Rauchbier (and of a different order as well, being from a different wood). What impressed me was the rich coffee and chocolate flavors, but without the overt sweetness I normally dislike in a porter. In fact, this drinks to me more like a dry Irish stout, which is a major plus in my book. All you need are some marshmallows and graham crackers, and you've got smores!

M: Initially, this was fantastic. The carbonation lent the beer a rich, creamy mouthfeel. However, since I had the bomber to myself, the carbonation faded too early, and the smoothness turned harsh.

O: This is an amazing beer, far better than I had ever hoped it would be. The only drawback is I will probably have to wait a couple of years before I'll get ahold of one again.

speter, Sep 06, 2011
Photo of Rifugium
3.85/5  rDev -7.7%

First had: on tap at Oskar Blues Homemade Liquids & Solids, Longmont, CO

Poured a coffee brown with a moderately lacing beige head. Aroma of chocolate, dark malts, and light smoked wood. Roasted malts in the taste, chocolatey. Honestly didn't get much smoke on first sip, but after a quick palate-cleansing, there was a definite smokey, ashy character going on, so it's a good thing I tried again, and properly so (God knows what I drank before it). Also a very subtle plum sensation barely detectable, I thought. Nice, not quite full-bodied, and quite drinkable.

Rifugium, Sep 01, 2011
Photo of charliedvrs
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%

2010 vintage. 22oz bomber poured into snifter glass.

Pours a deep, dark brown, maybe one shade short of black with a nice dark tan head that leaves a generous lacing. The nose is full of roasted barley and smoke, with just a bit of well hop aroma in the background. The smoke flavor isn't over the top stick-your-head-in-a-campfire taste, nor anything you'd find in a German rauchbier. It's that dry, salted wood taste that lingers on your palate after a bite out of a high quality smoked meat or fish. It's just present enough to be the primary flavor, but subtle enough to let a nice chocolate malt flavor come through, complemented by a bit of a grassy, pine hop flavor. A medium body, for the style, and slightly higher carbonation make this any easy drinker - the kind you'd have no problem pouring a full pint of.

Thanks Dane for the chance to try this one. It's easy to see why this one is a classic and I'll definitely be searching out other vintages in the future.

charliedvrs, Aug 29, 2011
Photo of seeswo
4.43/5  rDev +6.2%

2009 bottle poured into a Lost Abbey stem.

Pours black with a nice brown head. I know that is no description, but really, thats what it looks like. The nose is smoke integrated with light, creamy chocolate malt. Yum. The flavor is fantastic. The smokiness is super smooth, rich and well integrated. Nice, lightly sweet malts. The word here is balance. Lower carbonation with a smooth, slightly creamy body. This is not the best porter I have ever had (hello Edmund Fitz), but the smoke integration is so nice on this beer. Definitely worth seeking out.

seeswo, Aug 28, 2011
Photo of CampusCrew
4.08/5  rDev -2.2%

If I would have had this years ago, I would have thought this was a smoke/bomb. For a heavy rauchbier drinker this is mild. Good, well made. The aromas are weaker than the flavors of the smoke though. Quality porter with deep dark chocolate and coffee and well balanced with Smokey malts. This is a great beer for new smoke beer drinkers.

CampusCrew, Aug 22, 2011
Photo of DoctorDog
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%

Presentation: Poured from a 1 pint 6 oz. bottle into a nonic. 2008 vintage.

A- Very dark mahogany, and nearly opaque. ~2 fingers of tan head. Head fades slowly to a thin cap.

S- Roasty coffee and chocolate maltiness, with a moderate smoky note on the finish. Quite nice.

T- Roasted, dark coffee, dark chocolate, slightly fruity sweetness. Solid smoky note lingers on the finish.

M- Moderate carbonation with a medium full feel, and fairly creamy.

O- Excellent. Fantastic beer...

Future outlook: Got in a trade from (?), and doesn't come here, so not likely to have again anytime soon. Didn't really mean to stow this beer away for so long, but it seems to have come out of it's ~3 years slumber with flying colors.

DoctorDog, Aug 21, 2011
Photo of JayS2629
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%

Pours dark black with a medium tan head that fades fast into a thin ring. Leaves thin rings of lace.

The aroma is of campfire, toasted malts, a touch of roast, some dark cocoa, and earthy notes.

Nothing complex. Robust coffee notes, with bakers chocolate, smoldering campfire smoke, earthy hop bite, toast, and some caramel.

Nice balance, a bit thin.

Very well balanced and tasty.

JayS2629, Aug 21, 2011
Photo of Coplains
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%

The 2008 vintage bomber into a pint glass. Pours dark to point of black with 2 fingers of foam no lacing, and rim of foam in the edge. Smells of malt with some good smoky notes. Taste is robust with good smokey balance. Very good beer and one of the first aged beers that I have had.

Coplains, Aug 19, 2011
Photo of Haybeerman
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%

A: Obsidian color; chestnut edges up to strong light. Poured a 3 finger light mocha head with excellent retention. Lots of sticky lace in small patches.

S: Toasted malts; chocolate, cocoa, bitter coffee beans. Mildly campfire smokiness. Very balanced nose.

T: Big toasted malts consistent with the nose. Smooth and rich with nice mellow smokiness. Lots of malt character. Very flavorful.

M: Light body. Low carbonation. Smooth, but not creamy. Finish is light and dry letting the smoke linger.

O: Its like a "comfort beer". Rich, flavorful and easy to drink. The smoke flavor is just right; present in richness but not like the bottom of an ashtray.

Haybeerman, Aug 19, 2011
Photo of Jeffo
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%

Bottle from akbeerfiend. Thanks for the trade!

From a bomber into a snifter.
Vintage: 2009

APPEARANCE: A brown pour yields a small, medium looking, light tan head with good retention, slowly fading to a good film cap. Black body and lower levels of carbonation evident. Only a ring remains until the end and leaves no lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Roasted malts, chocolate, cocoa, and some smoked coffee beans. The smokiness is not dominant, but certainly makes its presence felt and is very balanced with the rest of the beer. Bold and interesting nose for sure.

TASTE: Lots of nice, bold flavors in this one. Roasted and smoky malts and lots of dark chocolate and cocoa powder. A chocolaty finish, with a bold and lingering aftertaste of smoked dark malts and dark, bitter chocolate. Plenty of flavor and very tasty stuff.

PALATE: Medium-thin body and slightly higher levels of carbonation. Not quite creamy enough for a porter, goes down fine and finishes slightly dry on the palate. Needs to somewhat fuller and creamier, which would also push the flavors over the edge.

OVERALL: Can’t believe this is the same brewery that makes that Baltic porter. This is a really tasty brew and well worth checking out. The palate could be a little bigger, which would give the flavors that backbone required for a perfect score, but that’s a minor issue. This is a flavorful and well crafted smoked porter that everyone should get the chance to try. If you see it, don’t hesitate. Thanks again akbeerfiend. Recommended.

Jeffo, Aug 16, 2011
Photo of ktrillionaire
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%

The brew pours a cola-brown hue and is capped with a very short-lived tan fizzy head. Lets get the smoke element out of the way first: Initially smoke is apparent in both the aroma and flavor; it immediately subsides to mere nuance on the palate, with the olfactory tuning it down shortly thereafter. The smoke contribution is in the range of smoked salmon, and is fairly mild as smoke intonation goes; it is not brutal like, say, hickory or campfire smoke, it has more of a soft subtlety. The flavor shows quite a bit of luscious dark fruity character along with a chocolate impression that strengthens on the finish. The nose suggests dry woody notes, port-like oxidation, soy sauce, and tanned leather, with some of the leather showing up on the palate as well. The feel is just too thin; it does not make for a bad mouthfeel, but it is far from the potential heights of enhancement that I envisage. Overall, it is still one of the more impressive handlings of the smoked element that I've encountered in a beer.

ktrillionaire, Jul 17, 2011
Photo of MrVonzipper
4.75/5  rDev +13.9%

Nice pitch black color. Nice foamy khaki head. Nice retention and very nice lacing.  

Roasted malt. Nuttiness and Chocolate

Rich full flavor. Nice roasted/burnt maltiness. Chocolate. Nice deep smokiness. Amazing flavor. 

Full bodied mouth and so smooth. A little dry. 

Overall this beer is exceptional IMO. Great depth and flavor with excellent, balanced smokiness.

MrVonzipper, Jul 13, 2011
Photo of notchucknorris
4.28/5  rDev +2.6%

A: Black with a very small light brown head that goes away pretty quickly.

S: This has a really amazing smoked aroma. Big campfire smokiness along with some smoked salmon. Probably the best smell I've ever found in a smoked beer.

T: There's some nice smokiness upfront followed by some roasted malts. The smokiness is nice and subdued and works perfectly with the malts. There's a faint hit of sweetness as well on the finish.

notchucknorris, Jul 11, 2011
Photo of dtivp
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%

Pours a dark black with a one finger light mocha head that fades quickly into a thin cap with moderate lacing.

Aroma of smoke and dark roasted coffee.

Taste follows nose with nice smoky dark roasted malt, black coffee and a slight hint of vanilla.

Mouth Feel was a light side of medium body with light carbonation, smooth with a slight smoky bitterness.

Overall this is a very good smoked porter, would be a top notch porter if it had a little thickness.

Note: enjoyed a vertical tasting of this beer at the Savor. The older vintages had little carbonation and tended to have more smoke aroma and taste.

dtivp, Jul 10, 2011
Photo of jcurtis55
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%

Shared a bomber with some friends. Poured dark brown with some tan head. I picked up the smoke in the aroma, but in no way thought it overpowering. I had aged it a year or two, so maybe that mellowed it a bit.

Flavor was of an excellent malty porter with a bit of smoke. I wasn't sure I'd like a smoked beer, but I had no issues with this one. I picked up the bomber on a business trip to Denver. If I could get it in Indiana, I'd be happy to drink more of this.

jcurtis55, Jul 10, 2011
Photo of biboergosum
4.13/5  rDev -1%

22oz bomber procured in a Whole Foods in Bellevue, WA. Damn, they have good beer available in that Stepford Wife-ridden suburb...

This beer pours a very dark, very ominous brown cola colour, with one finger of weighty foamy beige head, which leaves some sea bluff profiles of painted lace around the glass in its wake. It smells of smoked salmon, chocolate malt, and mildly bitter pine hops. The taste is salty, smoked malt, some languishing medium chocolate, and some bitter earthy hops. The carbonation is on the low side, the body close to full in weight, and quite smooth. It finishes with a soft saltine cracker malt doused in chocolate.

Wow - a whole lot going on in this brew, but it all comes back to the chocolate malt, whether it be from a swing by the fishy seashore, or a traipse through the wild northern forests. A very fine porter that rams home that outdoors-y feel.

biboergosum, Jul 09, 2011
Photo of JamnesCameron
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

2009 vintage. Received this from Dunt in my Birthday BIF box. Thanks Ryan!

Poured into a snifter. Pours a deep jet black with a two fingered tan/light mocha head that drops slowly, leaving a wisp of foam and nice lacing.

Aromas of dark cocoa, coffee, wood smoke and vanilla.

Flavors of vanilla, cocoa powder, dark coffee, some roast malt, nice smokey edge. Hints of alcohol. Finish is long with vanilla and smoke lingering long into the fade.

Moutfeel is medium, slightly chewy, smoke astringency, and good level of carbonation.

Overall, an outstanding beer. One to seek out, try fresh, and squirrel away a few for cellaring.

JamnesCameron, Jul 07, 2011
Photo of MbpBugeye
3.55/5  rDev -14.9%

I finally got to try this beer at the hands of schwaeh. 2010 bottle I do believe.

Appearance
The beer is a murky tobacco brown with a yellowed, gray head. Thin retention.

Aroma
Very smokey. One of the more smokey "smoked porters" out there, but it still doesn't reach full on German rauchbier status, which is just fine by me. The smoke stays pleasant, coming close to the spiced meat type smells, but also venturing into sweet mesquite and a rich fruitiness. With some warmth the smell gets good. Some chocolate is found underneath that adds a familiar complexity to this porter.

Taste
Quite smokey, but the base beer is not smothered. There is a good deal of vinous fruitiness from the rich malts. The finish lingers with smoke/ash/charcoal bitterness, just after cocoa and coffee make a brief appearance.

Mouthfeel
The body is perhaps a bit thin. Carbonation is low. The beer has a gritty/powdery dry feeling that works well with the smokey tastes.

Overall
A really well done, highly smokey beer. Often times the smoke can run amok and ruin a beer. Alaskan was really able to incorporate it well here, though.

MbpBugeye, Jul 04, 2011
Photo of schwaeh
3.95/5  rDev -5.3%

22oz bomber that I contributed to a little bottle share. 2010 bottling.

A: Black with plenty of ruby around the edges lettting light through. Light carbonation and lacing; The lacing doesn't stick around.

S: Smell has a nice charred oak smokiness, and a pepperiness maybe some beef jerky in-the-making. I didn't get much alcohol in the nose.

T: The flavor, as one would expect, is initially a charred wood smokiness similar to smoked meat. I didn't know how well integrated this would be from my past experiences with smoked beers but now I see why this beer has such a following. I thought the smoke was mellow and pleasant, although maybe more appropriate when the temperatures fall outside. I get sweet molasses on the finish that fades into more smoke. Alcohol doesn't interfere with the flavor at all. Hops don't play a large role.

M: A little on the thin side. Light carbonation but the flavors coat your mouth.

O: After having this fresh one I really wanted to see what a 10 year old bottle felt like. They say it holds up like a champ so hopefully I'll know someday. I like what they do with this beer. Could have easily drank this bottle by myself.

schwaeh, Jul 04, 2011
Photo of Spider889
3.63/5  rDev -12.9%

Shared by Schwaeh.

Black, typical porter. Short sandy head; it doesn't last very long but a small grouping of bubbles is continuously replenished.

Smells deliciously smokey. Lots of rich, dark campfire smoke and bitter black malts.

The taste is quite bitter. This masks the maltier and even smokey flavors. Burnt toast ashiness and bitter espresso round out the flavor profile.

Much thinner than I'd like, almost watery at times. Carbonation is very light. I would like to see much more, but very fine, carbonation - to create a smooth creaminess. Smoke lingers on the palate long after each sip.

Overall a good American smoked beer, but it could be improved imo.

Spider889, Jul 03, 2011
Photo of lakersfan16
2.95/5  rDev -29.3%

22 oz. bottle. Pours a dark black with a creamy tan head. Aroma is very smokey, however not overly intense. Very rich flavor of dark malts and smoke, with hints of coffee and chocolate as well. The finish is almost all smoke, much too intense for my liking.

I’ve used this many times in making caribou pot roasts in the crockpot. They even have a recipe on their website, which is delicious.

I was informed that this beer has won more medals at the Great American Beer Festival than any other beer, quite an accomplishment.

lakersfan16, Jun 30, 2011
Photo of busterthecat
3.2/5  rDev -23.3%

Finally got a bottle of this to try. 2008 bottle. Poured into a Duvel Chalice.

A- Pours a semi-transparent brown hue from bottle. A light fizzy head forms, soda like. The head quickly fades and the beer sits a very dark soft shade of brown in glass as a nice stream of carb bubbles cut through the mid of the beer.

S- Lots of sweet smooth smoke. Mesquite like quality. reminds me of BBQ or a campfire. Thats really it, damn smokey, in a good way.

T- Lots of smoke, similar to aroma. Some roasted malt present, but smoke is dominate. Slight chocolate peaks through in end as warms. Kinda basic and one dimensional. Was looking for more depth.

M- Smokey flavors start full but quickly fade. It comes in a bit thin and watery for my liking with this smokey of a flavor. Wet through entire sip. Flavors don't linger long on palate.

O- Rather disappointed with this brew. I will try to buy a newer bottle to compare, but was looking for much more depth. The smoke aroma & taste is done very well, but that all you really get. Easy to drink, but a bomber gets kinda boring about a 1/3 through. Needs much more malt presence to fill in the voids.

busterthecat, Jun 27, 2011
Photo of shaunb81
4.18/5  rDev +0.2%

Picked this up on my Alaskan vacation. From what I was told, it is one of the best smoked porters in the States.

Appearance - Jet black with a very nice cream head. Lacing is awesome, but I wish there was a little more head retention.

Smell - Roasted malts and medium smokiness. I also smell some coffee and a slight hoppiness.

Taste - Starts off a little sweet and then kicks me in the face with a beautiful smoky flavor. Really wish I had some good grilled meat to eat with this. The back end is a bit bitter, but the smokiness hangs on for the entire ride.

Mouth - I really wish that this beer was a little heavier. It's body is medium and it dries my mouth out with the quickness. Carbonation is mild.

Overall - This is actually my first smoked beer that I've had, so I don't really have any standard to hold it up against. It's tasty and quite adventurous for those who aren't familiar with this type of brew. I would probably buy this again if I could find it in Florida and I would share it with some fellow brew heads. Purchase on sight...

shaunb81, Jun 22, 2011
Photo of axeman9182
4.2/5  rDev +0.7%

22oz bomber sent by FunkyMacGroovin, this 2010 bottle was poured into my Duvel tulip.

Alaskan Porter pours a solid black, not even a hint of brown at the edges. It seems less intimidating than a big stout though. There's an easy four fingers of light caramel head on the beer, splitting my glass in two. Retention is very good, amd thick rings of lacing are left circling the glass. The nose is good, but a little bit too much smoke and not enough porter for my taste. There's some espresso notes for sure, but smoke is easily the star of the show. The malty base beer shows up more in the flavor, coffee and chocolate notes abound to open the beer. The smoky quality slowly creeps into the picture, like an oncoming fog, until there's nothing left but a pleasantly smoky finish. While the carbonation is nicely understated, the body could stand to be a bit more full/rich for such a malty beer. Alaskan Smoked Porter takes a tasty base brew and adds just the right amount of smoke to change it into something new and unique without overpowering the beer.

axeman9182, Jun 13, 2011
Photo of goblue3509
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%

Pours a dark brown color with red hues around the edges and a slight off white head which leaves some lace. The aroma is of big smoke, like being at a bonfire, there is also a hint of coffee and maybe a subtle dark chocolate there. The taste again is big smoke, the taste again is like a campfire but then it is balanced out by a chocolate and cofee taste. There is a little more to this beer, a nice balance with being true to what it is. The mouthfeel is creamy and lightly carbonated. Overall it is a solid beer, it isn't just all smoke with no substance underneath it. Well worth a try.

goblue3509, Jun 06, 2011
Alaskan Smoked Porter from Alaskan Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 1,565 ratings.