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Alaskan Baltic Porter (Pilot Series) - Alaskan Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alaskan Baltic Porter (Pilot Series)Alaskan Baltic Porter (Pilot Series)

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

353 Ratings
THE BROS
91
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 353
Reviews: 217
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 11.78%
Wants: 149
Gots: 42 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Alaskan Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  9.80% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
Alaskan Baltic Porter is a deep, dense beer with an intricate array of aromas and flavors derived from substantial amounts of specialty malts, dark black cherries and whole gourmet vanilla beans. Aging on toasted French oak adds further complexity.

(Beer added by: ccrida on 04-27-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 353 | Reviews: 217 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by yemenmocha:
Photo of yemenmocha
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours coca-cola brown that is easy to see through upon pouring, but appears almost black once poured into the glass. Head is somewhat modest and recedes to a thin layer.

Nose clearly has the cherry and vanilla, with the cherry having an almost throat-lozenge/cough-syrupy character.

On the palate this beer is surprisingly lighter bodied than what I expected, and helps with drinkability, but of course again the cherry-vanilla takes main stage. Some cola flavors are present, and there's a hint of dry oakiness going on as well.

I like it, but I can see why some may not because it is rather cough syrupy.

yemenmocha, Sep 30, 2009
More User Reviews:
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark opaque pour with cola and garnet highlights. Half inch of khaki head. Dark malts abound with profuse toffee and licorice. Slightly sweet caramel and dark fruits with plum and pear accents. Quite an intriguing aroma.

First sip brings sweet dark malts with bold toffee and licorice upfront. Caramel accents with lots of cellar fruits moving in and out as well. Dense with malt and only a touch of hops on the way down with no real alcohol presence. A rich, tasty brew.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with good carbonation that goes down smooth and tasty. Thanks to warriorsoul for leaving this one behind for me after Dark Lord Day.

orbitalr0x, Jun 07, 2009
Photo of Beaver13
2.38/5  rDev -42.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

22 oz bottle, dated 2009. Pours brown with a smallish tan head that quickly goes to a thin film that leaves some lacing.

The aroma is alcoholic fruity chocolate. The alcohol is pretty sharp. Lots of rum soaked cherries, plums, apples and fudge.

The flavor is strong alcohol and lots of slight tart fruits. The some roasted chocolate and some plasticy cardboard bitterness in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied.

Overall, I was excited to see a baltic porter since I like the smoked porter quite a bit, but this beer is a bit of a mess - strange fruity alcohol with lots of off notes.

Beaver13, Oct 10, 2009
Photo of Jason
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pitch black color. Pours like motor oil in the glass so to get a goo head going on I have to have a fine splash down the middle of the glass which formed a latte like sticky head. Slight taffy aroma with a soft chocolate, faint ripe fig and mild char nose. Big lush creaminess cradles the delicate smoothness, amazingly smooth. Sweet dark and burnt sugar flavors to kick things off, a hint of brownie batter and dark fruit in the middle. The alcohol is a bit warm but does not play like it is 9.8% abv. The modest hopping really lets the maltiness shine here. Finishes sweet with a long linger of mellow roasted grain.

A big beer with modest complexities, they are there but just not in your face. The alcohol is somewhat hidden, hard to tell it is that strong. All around a solid beer.

Jason, Nov 22, 2008
Photo of Motleydrunk56
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%

22 oz Bomber.This was recommended by a beer geek that worked at Bev Mo to me.I have to say that I am going to start listening to those people a little more.This is the Best Porter I have ever tasted.Beautiful brown color in the 20 oz firestone glass.I was sitting in the house listening to The Who live at the isle of wight and I could not believe how good this was.I guess this is very hard to find the date was 2012 on the bottle.If you can still find this Please do.You will not be disappointed.This Porter Rocks.And so does The Who.Rock on with the good beers.Motley out.

Motleydrunk56, Aug 20, 2014
Photo of DoShek
4.72/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - black, dark tan head that poured creamy but thin and subsided quickly to a minute ring around the glass, viscous

Smell - raisins and other dark fruits, molasses, heavy malts

Taste - strong malt, dark fruits, little bitterness, slightly roasty, vanilla, reminds me quite a bit of dark naval rum

Mouthfeel - thick, full, and creamy, slight bit of alcohol warmth

Drinkability - could only have one in a sitting, but would not hesitate to have another in the future

This was a great beer. Will definitely be interesting to see how it tastes with a bit of age on it and when the alcohol (which is already barely noticeable) cools a bit. I say good job to Alaskan.

DoShek, Dec 31, 2008
Photo of Mora2000
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown with a khaki head. The aroma caught me off guard. While I do get some cherry and vanilla, the main fruit flavor I get is bananas. Very strange. The flavor is very complex with cherry, vanilla, oak and roasted malts. The beer is pretty sweet and you get some alcohol but it is fairly well hidden. Mouthfeel is thinner than expected. Low carbonation.

Mora2000, Jan 19, 2010
Photo of mkrass
5/5  rDev +20.2%

mkrass, Dec 02, 2012
Photo of MattyG85
4.28/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 22 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness chalice glass. 2012 bottle.

Appearance: Pours very dark and black with only a little brown color showing. Moderate amount of bubbles and about one finger of tan head that fades into a small patch. Leaves a decent amount of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A dark and sweet aroma. Dark roasted malts with big hints of dark chocolate, toast, burnt caramel, toffee, coffee, and vanilla. Some scents of oak chips and banana. Also a good smell of dark fruits including cherries, plum, and fig. Anise spice and a little whiff of tobacco. Hop presence is pretty light. Sweetness is balanced. A pretty nice dark smelling porter.

Taste: Roasty and sweet like the aroma previews. Dark malts with a taste of dark chocolate, burnt caramel, toffee, dark bread, coffee, and vanilla. Oak chips and some anise spicing along with a touch of tobacco. Some banana taste and notes of dark fruits including dark cherries, plum, and fig. Tastes sweet but not cloying in any way. Not really any signs of smoke like a Baltic Porter typical has. Tastes good anyways.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy, slick, and slightly syrupy. Feels a little too light for the style. Alcohol is hidden very well.

Overall: A pretty nice porter overall. Good fruit taste. Could of had more body and some smoke.

MattyG85, Dec 09, 2012
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.55/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours dark brown, thin lacing, looks generous. Smell, whoooo alcoholic, for reals. So alcoholic you might think its aged in some grain alcohol barrels. But there's some other stuff in there. Wine like in its diversity of flavor.

A sipping beer, but you don't need a lot of time between intervals. While the alcohol is obviously there, for how high it is, it isn't overpowering. I would recommend.

Revisit 8/2011: Not as impressive as the first batch was. A little more bitterness than I like, needs an RIS body to absorb this. Mild licorice/dark fruit. Just not a style I dig so much on.

Beerandraiderfan, Dec 25, 2009
Photo of williamjbauer
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

williamjbauer, Jun 16, 2014
Photo of jpbebeau
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

jpbebeau, Sep 27, 2012
Photo of kevwcamp
4/5  rDev -3.8%

kevwcamp, Nov 29, 2011
Photo of pwoods
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Kelley for sharing this brew.

22oz. Brown bottle poured into tulip.

A: Pours a very deep brown, nearly opaque in the light. Moderate head on the pours with some retention and some lacing.

S: Lots of dark fruits and a good mellowed alcohol. Nice rich malts that aren't overly rich or sweet.

T/M: Nice full flavor malts but not too rich or cloying. Lots of chocolate and dark caramel. Very pleasant alcohol. Dark fruits and a richness that grows as it warms. Body is full and rich but not thick and cloying.

D: Still pretty drinkable for a big as it is.

pwoods, Jun 21, 2010
Photo of jbphoto88
3.51/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Alaskan Baltic porter pours a rich deep red brown. It's not overtly thick and let's plenty of light through on the sides but has a hard time making it all the way through the center. A tan head comes and goes quickly, quietly and disappointingly.

The nose is roasty and sweet with hints of stone fruits. Not a distinct malt scent but a mix of fruit, booze, brown sugar and caramel. The sugar is almost a candied smell that reminds me of Belgian quads.

Slick on the tongue and very reminiscent of the smell. The same dark fruit and brown sugar mixed with roasted, toast flavored malts. Cherries lead the way and are followed by a caramelized coating and finish.

Mildly carbonated with an oil like mouthfeel. Smooth and thick feeling as it coats your face hole. The feel is my favorite part of this brew. I find it to be weak for a porter and kind of confused with its identity. A good brew but too sweet for my taste. I'd rather a porter go more roasted grain then sugary.

jbphoto88, Aug 15, 2013
Photo of acurtis
3.25/5  rDev -21.9%

acurtis, Apr 10, 2012
Photo of Metalmonk
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

If it's not black, it's the darkest possible shade of brown known to man. Toasted-brown head is modest and thins to a skim that hangs around for the duration.

Aroma is rich and roasty, bursting with anise, dark fudge, fresh-cut oak, marshmallow, smoke and molasses. Fresh cream sweetness comes in too, as does a warming glow from the alcohol.

Wow, the flavor is big. And decadent. Big bursts of black licorice, caramel, chocolate cake batter and blackstrap molasses cover the dark sweet angle, while the zing of new wood, gingerbread, alcohol and vanilla lend some balance.

The gooey, syrup-like flavor is appropriately round and hefty, although perhaps just a tad too carbonated for my liking. Still can't call it anything less than good in the texture dept.

Delicious--and very, very dessert-y. Another winner from this great brewery. Many thanks to msubulldog25 for the chance to try it.

Metalmonk, Dec 24, 2008
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
3.9/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good to see this one coming around in bottles (just wish they would do it with the coffee brown already. Or make an imperial stout, or put that smoked porter in some barrels already, or...)

Pours a deep dark black, but there are some very ruby hues when held up to a light. Head is nice and fluffy, light tan color, and lingers fairly well. Doesnt leave very impressive lacing, but some is there.

Nose is a bit weak for my taste. An odd metallic flavor mixed amongst dark malts, some chocolate, a slight touch of coffee way in the back there. A little bit of vanilla and some kind of dark fruit.

Hmmm. Taste is pretty complex. It doesnt quite hit you right up front, but it gets more complex as it rolls on. First some dark malt hits, but is quickly joined by a bit of vanilla flavor. Some oak is here, a bit of chocolate. Coffee i got in the nose was probably just from some darker malts, maybe chocolate malt or black pat or something. An odd metallic flavor through the middle. There is a wierd dark fruit aroma i cant quite put my finger on that i did not get in the on tap version. A stronger cherry presence I think. Cherry is certainly not a dominant characteristic, but it is there. There is some oak flavor in here towards the finish as the alcohol starts to make its presence known, although nowhere near what one would expect. Finish is fairly dry, and chocolate and oak linger on the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is good, but slightly thin for the style. With an abv pushing 10 i would like just a touch more viscosity in here. Carbonation is right where it should be, maybe a tiny touch strong, but nothing significant.

Drinkability is pretty decent for the style, and quite good for the abv. This one drinks like its 6 or 7%. I could take down a couple of these, but after that i would probably switch to something lighter.

Overall a very decent and respectable offering from Alaskan. Nothing to write home about, this is no olfabrikken or smuttynose, but it is a very decent baltic. A few kinks could be adjusted, maybe a bit more roastiness, but other than those few small things, this is a good baltic. Will be throwing a few of these in the cellar to see how they do. I think it has the potential to cellar for a few years at least. Another good one from Alaskan, not quite up to the smoked porter or barleywines grade, but still a good beer.

AKBelgianBeast, Nov 17, 2008
Photo of Sammy
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Derek's bottle. A porter with a cherry first and then chocolate characteristic. The aroma of the real thing, happy valentine's Day chocolate and cherries. Black with a white foam, and above-average mouthfeel. A strong note of vanilla.OK take the bottle, enjoy the taste. Not sweet, bit certainly not too baltic sour.

Sammy, Mar 16, 2010
Photo of jh1982
4/5  rDev -3.8%

jh1982, Nov 23, 2011
Photo of ElGordo
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On a surprisingly cool and rainy night in August, I decided to switch it up from the wheat beers and pilsners that have become my usual fare this summer. Poured from the 22oz bottle into a pint glass. Body is a deep dark brown, rich and full but still letting a little bit of light shine through. A khaki-brown, creamy head flourishes for a couple of minutes before subsiding to a thin coating.
Aroma of sweet caramel malt with just a touch of roastiness. A plethora of sweet notes poking through - maple, mocha, and vanilla bean are all present, with a strong underlying boozy character. Palate is sweet up front, with caramel and maple flavors taking center stage. Dark fruit and mocha notes also make their presence known. A husky bitterness comes through before the swallow, balancing things out a bit for the smooth, warm finish.
Body is fairly thick, with a bit of an oily slickness to it. This beer is rich throughout, living up to its high ABV. While maybe not the most authentic baltic porter on the market, this is definitely an enjoyable beer, and a definite change of pace for summertime drinking.

ElGordo, Aug 12, 2009
Photo of Photekut
5/5  rDev +20.2%

Photekut, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of mikey711
4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Almost completely black , with only some light able to get through at the bottom of the glass. Minimal head about a quarter inch thick with a tan colored head.

S: Milk chocolate, some sweet coffee notes, vanilla, some roasiness, brown sugar. Some dark fruit notes.

T: A nice bit of smokiness, sweet milk chocolate, roasted coffee notes, dark fruit notes, vanilla.

M: Very smooth and creamy. A slight bit of heat.

D: Really enjoyed this one, but with such a high abv i couldnt have too many of these for fear of dangerous situations :)

mikey711, Jan 21, 2010
Photo of hooliganlife
4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2009 bottle

pours deep thick jet black with a light cocoa cream head. nice light retention.

first sniff brings dark candied cherries and strong oak. this is followed by a subtle vanilla and molasses. very rich and sweet with a faint hint of booze.

light cherries blend well with the oak and vanilla. lots of complexity and lots of flavor. light hints of cocoa and molasses hide behind the bigger cherry. not as rich as the scent but this is for sure a sweet porter indeed. very very faint booze in the finish.

very chewy and thick. light to moderate carbonation. very full.

given how rich this is and the almost 10% ABV, only one at a time however i would for sure drink this again. i forget who sent this to me although i am pretty sure i know who did. i did indeed enjoy this. i love baltic porters.

hooliganlife, Feb 09, 2010
Photo of nickd717
3.58/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Review dated 8/23/2010. Bomber from Whole Foods Los Altos.

Pours pretty much pitch black with a huge tan head that lasts. Has some viscosity to it.

The aroma is very rich. Chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, and dark fruit jump out at you. It’s not extremely balanced, but I like it.

The flavor is a mishmash of all kinds of intense aspects. It’s tasty, but sort of lacks an identity. Did they actually add cherries and vanilla beans to this brew? I definitely do get those flavors, along with your typical roasted malt, coffee, and dark chocolate. Slight anise.

Very full-bodied and slick on the palate. Really an intense mouthfeel, perhaps a little too much so.

This is good, but the drinkability on this one is just not there. This beer really wears your palate out in a hurry.

nickd717, Aug 26, 2011
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Alaskan Baltic Porter (Pilot Series) from Alaskan Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 353 ratings.