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Shade Grown Coffee Porter - Real Ale Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Shade Grown Coffee PorterShade Grown Coffee Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

352 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 352
Reviews: 198
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 11.87%
Wants: 29
Gots: 42 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Real Ale Brewing Company visit their website
Texas, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  6.30% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: assurbanipaul on 12-07-2003

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 352 | Reviews: 198 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of projectflam86
4.07/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this through a trade with natelocc787. Cheers!

A- Pours a deep brown color with a one finger mocha colored head. Decent lacing.

S- Really nice aroma of fresh brewed coffee and toasted grains.

T- Bold coffee upfront with a hint of smoke. Deep roasted flavor throughout and a touch of alcohol in the finish.

M- Medium bodied with ok carbonation. A bit thinner than I was expecting.

D- Overall a nice easy drinking porter with plenty of roasted coffee flavor.

Photo of JosephLondon
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

I never wake up and drink a beer, but this morning I just felt like enjoying the Coffee Porter in lieu of brewed coffee.

Poured into my Summer Ale pint glass with a two fingered, light brown head. The head dissipates to leave behind a thin layer rim giving little lace. The brew is one of the darkest browns I have seen, but not quite black. When held to light there are deep red highlights. I reviewed a beer last night and didn't get too much from the nose. My allergies must be the cause because I am not getting too much from this brew, either. What I do get is good, Coffee and malt. I like the taste. It is not very complex, but smooth and refreshing. A real good morning treat. The coffee is not strong at all. It is a sweet coffee taste, some chocolate and caramel. There is some amaretto in the finish. This beer drinks very nicely. I enjoyed this beer with some jalapeno pigs in a blanket and would love another if it wasn't so early.

Photo of whoneeds8
4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into pint glass black with a one and a half tan head that retains for a good while. Great lacing all the way down. The smell is of roasted malts and coffee. There isn't much hop flavor in the taste, it goes straight to carmel sweetness from the malt and ends with a definate coffee aftertaste. This has become one of my very favorite session porters.

Photo of fjordhook
3.97/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

appearance: very dark brown with a reddish tint, wish it had more head when poured into a glass

smell: coffee and chocolate

taste: same as above

mouthfeel: tastes thin and carbonated like the person below said, very smooth though

drinkability: very drinkable beer, the light carbonation makes it easy for me to drink

Photo of Fnord
3.79/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Dark brown with a thin, fizzy head.

Smell & Taste - Chocolate, coffee, grass, alcohol, a bit of pine, and some nuttiness in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Thin and highly carbonated. Not ideal for a porter.

Notes - I remember this being much better when I had it on draft last year. The taste is great, it's just the lack of head and poor mouthfeel that hold it back. I'll make a point of trying it again on draft, because I'd like to find out of my palate's changed or if this beer just doesn't bottle well.

Photo of northaustin
3.78/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured into a pint glass. pours brown with half a finger of semi even brown head which disappears fairly slowly and leaves some stringy lacing.

wait for this one to be warm before you drink it. most smells and flavors are hidden until its about at room temperature.

smell: coffee beans and a classic porter background. pretty subtle smell. has that sort of burnt caramel smell i get in alot of porters but maybe its just me.

taste: much better than the smell. this beer has a full bodied, robust porter flavor with strong notes of coffee in both the initial taste and the aftertaste. not too heavy and makes this beer very sessionable.

mouthfeel: fairly dry, but also leaves you salivating in the end. goes down smooth.

drinkability: very sessionable. once again, wait till its warm or just leave them out of the fridge.

Photo of Wasatch
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to JJFoodie for this one.

Best By: 01/21/10

Pours a dark brown color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy/foamy light tan head, with some sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with some coffee notes, slight toffee as well. The taste is malty, slightly sweet, nice little coffee/toffee note. Medium body. Drinkable, a tasty brew, glad to have had a chance to try it.

Photo of Deuane
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-Deep copper kissed brown with a medium light tan head that reduced to a thin cap and left spotty lace.

S-Subtle dark roasted coffee aroma with a backing of roasted malt and a touch of caramel sweetness.

T-Quality deep, dark roasted coffee flavour up front with a solid malt backing. Gets better and better with warming becoming more coffee forward as it does so.

M-Medium bodied somewhat acrid with nice lingering flavour.

D-Nice stuff. Nothing over the top here but a solidly done brew that is subtle yet flavourful that is easy to drink plenty of. comes across in the end like a robust brown ale more than a true porter IMHO.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.03/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

There's no indication on the bottle lable that notes the "Shade Grown" title but it's the same beer in the end.

This Coffee Porter is a middle-of-the-road base of chocolate, pale, and a bit of roasted malts. Roast is intensified by the coffee additions which pick up a 'columbian coffee' nuttiness. Though the coffee is present, I have had regular Porters with as much coffee flavor and boldness. Bitterness is a good blend of hops and coffee resins with a bit of grassiness comming into the flavor hop flavor mix.

The beer is a dark brown color with some opaquness particularly around the edges. A loosely knit head falls apart under the coffee influence (a lot of coffee beers do this). Some lacing and foam holds onto the edges before completely disipating after a few minutes.

A grainy, tart-sour thing happens as the beer warms and carbonation subsides. I'm not sure if this is part of the beers character or if it is becaue I am drinking toward the tail end of the 'Best By' date.

The body is pretty light and could use a fuller, maltier, breadier mouthfeel. Without it, the beer seems thin as the carbonation is fleeting.

Thanks Exiled.

Photo of AlexMunse
4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pored from the tap into a 16oz pint glass.

It pours almost completely black with no light showing through. (I've seen some people review that there was a deep reddish color showing through, but I was in a dark bar) An almost non-existant off-white head that dissipates quickly. Almost no lacing.

It smells strongly of coffee (go figure) and hops. A slight sweetness, but I can't get it. Maybe chocolate?

The taste is excellent! I assumed there would be coffee, but I didn't expect the sweet nor the bitter. The way that all the flavors work against each other, yet WITH each other, makes this a very interesting beer! Theres also a slight burned taste, maybe woodsmoke or something. Almost reminds me of a backyard barbeque. There's a very smooth finish with a slightly unpleasant aftertaste.

It has a thicker than normal feel to it, but I wouldn't call it a thick beer. Very bubbly as well, but that's a good thing that, I think, works well with the strong coffee flavor.

This is the first time I've had this beer on tap and I think, while I wouldn't drink this beer every day, I will probably grab a pint at the bar if I see it there.

Photo of twiggamortis420
3.92/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle with a best by date of 12.29.09. Pours a damn near black color with just a bit of brown showing around the edges. Fluffy brown head displays average retention and lacing.

Nose is well balanced with roasty coffee, semi-sweet chocolate and mildly burnt toast. I cant really find any hops in here, nor any yeasty esters...a very clean smelling porter.

The roasty coffee flavor is easily the most dominant flavor in the beer. Not much sweetness and there really is not an abundance of hop bitterness, but that seems to be ok as the coffee seems to lend plenty of it. It's a very smooth tasting beer, low carbonation helps the beer go down all too easily. A bit of mild fruitiness shows up as the beer warms to give it a much needed boost in complexity. This is a nice beer and one of the better Real Ale offerings. Fairly simple, but the smoothness of the beer and fresh, good coffee flavors make this a worthwhile and enjoyable drinking experience.

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

I got this brew from whoneeds8 for winning SNF Squares Week 13, Thanks Maston!

12oz bottle served in a glass beer mug.

Very dark brown color with a small beige head that left a few spots of lacing.
Smells like fresh roasted coffee beans, very good.
Taste is all coffee upfront with some chocolate malt notes further down the line finishing sweet.
Medium bodied with a smooth, easy drinking feel.

Photo of johnnnniee
3.87/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Received as an extra in a trade with TexIndy, thanks for the opportunity.
Pours a dark as night brown that borders on black with the faintest of brown highlights on the outer edges. Stingy tan head dissipates quickly leaving minimal lace. Smells of coffee and chocolate up front with a sweet milk sugar aroma in there as well. Lots of coffee up front in the mouth. Followed by some caramel, dark fruit, some sweet malts finishing with a long lingering roast bitterness. I though I might have found some hops in the taste, but then I lost them again. Mouthfeel is almost creamy bordering on watery. Body is kind of thin, I was expecting a bit more, and the carbonation is medium to high. Decent brew although I would have liked a bit more body. Maybe if I was drinking this in Texas in Aug I wouldn't be saying that. I certainly would turn down another one if it came my way.

Photo of superdedooperboy
4.05/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The last of the extras received in a trade with JFFoodie. I'll be doing business with him again!

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle into a snifter. Freshness date clearly printed on the label.

Pours an inky black with a high level of opacity but with some visible mahogany glints showing through; a small off-white head makes a brief appearance before falling away to a thin ring and leaves behind no remnants of itself on the sides of the glass.

Aroma is mildly roasty and mild in general, with a distinct coffee note; some faint milk chocolate makes itself into the nose as well. Reminiscent of a Mocha Frappuccino.

Body is light and lightly carbonated. The faintest sweetness is detectable up front and around the edges, but a light roast is dominant though never astringent or overbearing. Toasted malt shows through in the middle alongside some mildly bitter hops, with coffee filling in elsewhere. The finish is light with just a hint of roast on the back of the tongue.

Quite drinkable and very well-balanced. This isn't some in-your-face bomb, for sure; rather, everything is well-rounded and inoffensive. A wonderful example of subtlety; brewed with Fair Trade coffee, it makes an altogether different statement as well. Very nice.

Photo of jdoncbus
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Best by date is 030710. Poured into SA turbulator glass. Color is dark brown leather belt with hints of ruby. Smallish head with minimal lacing; oily film sticks to glass.

Aroma is dark toasted malt and dark roasted coffee. Somewhat creamy smell with vanilla and fruitcake hops. A nip of pine and a dash of apricot.

Toasty malt dances with coffee; the coffee is not overpowering and finishes well with a nice helping of piney hops. A very crisp beer and very balanced throughout the tasting; nothing dominates. The carbonation creates a crisp and tart mouthfeel and is left with a dry, mild coffee after taste.

Very easy to drink and would recommend to a porter newbie. As mentioned the beer is precisely balanced which in my opinion makes it very enjoyable. Great for starting out the night or a nightcap; would pair well with some pastries. Another reason to visit Austin, Katz and Real Ale; thanks to my sis-in-law for bringing it north.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.22/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed this one for the after dinner drink as the kids opened theirr presents. Served chilled and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 12/24/2009.

The pour was nice, dark brown, nearly black in color with a nice little puff on tan colored head on top. Nice lacing as it drops down the sides leaving a broken crown along the top. Aroma is solid coffee, with light notes of lactose and touches of something sweet balancing in there as well. Rich coffee notes with light touches of sugar are the way to go here. Smooth, easy sipper as each taste seems to bring more of the coffee flavor up to the forefront. Lighter feel then I would have expected but with the more the adequete carbonation it really seems to work here. Easily drinkable as this one went down without a fight and forced me to move on to something else.

Again not the best coffee porter I have had, but I liked it. It worked as it was lighter then I was expecting but it was well put together and some good depth could be found.

Photo of angelmonster
3.6/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a 1 finger off white head. Body is a very dark brown, almost black with some white floaties. Head retention and lacing were above average

Smell is of roasted malt, some sweet chocolate, and slight coffee. There is also abit of copper metal in there. Hops aren't present, wish coffee had more presence

Taste is of roasted malt and burnt, bitter coffee. Dont know if the hops have any effect on the beer or if the bitterness is just coming from the coffee beans

Mouth feel is above average. Body was on the lighter side for a porter and well carbonated. Head didnt add much to the body which was disappointing.

Drink ability was good. A sessionable beer for a hot Texas day. I love coffee beers and wish that the coffee had more presence. Wouldnt be my first choice for a coffee beer but worth a try

Photo of rudylaw
3.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From my main man pwsoldier!

Really dark with next to no head.

Big time coffee in the nose. Similar to Peche Mortel in terms of strength. Not as well-rounded, but damn delicious.

This is all coffee. Nothing more, nothing less. Carbonation is fine; drinkability is fine.

If you're into coffee stouts, well worth seeking out. For the style this is solid stuff.

Photo of gory4d
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown with a tan head that dissipates quickly, leaving some lacing. The smell is coffee, malt, berries, cocoa. The taste is mild, mellow coffee, dark malt, something savory like pan drippings, a bitter cocoa finish that's a little dry. It's well carbonated, full in the mouth. A beer to quaff slowly, the better to enjoy its subtleties. Glad I found myself in Texas in time for it.

Photo of jbphoto88
3.88/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A coffee porter that actually pours and looks like black coffee. That's weird isn't it? If it weren't for the khaki head you might mistake this for a cold cup of joe. The froth dissipates to a small dollop of scummy looking bubbles floating around the murky dark brew.

The nose could use some improvement. It's not bad but there is a mild touch of burnt hair smell that is acrid and acidic like scorched coffee in an old pot. It doesn't stay long or linger through the whole beer, in fact it fades into a lovely roasted black malt scent. I have to admit that it's growing on me.

The taste is where this brew shines. Deep roasted grains flip flop between a sweet espresso and unsweet chocolate. The coffee is not over powering as in some other beers and you can't tell if the bitterness is from the delicate addition of hops or a subtle twang from the cafe.

The body is medium to full, not quite as thick as a stout but definitely heavier then a regular ale. There is a creaminess that lasts into the mild chocolate malty finish. Incredibly pleasing beer that I'm going to add to my regular rotation, while I can still find it.

Photo of GregSVT
4.56/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Cask at the Plano Gingerman

A: Pours a deep hazy black with a big creamy tan head that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. This is one aspect of the cask conditioning where the beer really gains a lot more points. The bottled version is slightly undercarbonated and this vastly improves upon that.

S: The nose isn't much different from the regular version. Lots of coffee and roasted malt.

T: Taste is also similar but there is a vanilla flavor along with the coffee, cocoa, and roasted malts.

M: The feel is the most changed on cask. Lots of creamy carbonation. Medium-Full bodied and delicious.

D: If only I could buy this in a bottle. I would buy it all the time. It's close to guiness as far as feel with more flavor.

Highly recommended if you can find it on cask.

Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I would like to go back and review this beer again at a later time. Right now, I am rather stuffed up in the head with the quick change in temperature outside, but this is beer #5 of a six-pack, so I can go somewhat on memory.

Appearance: Pours a dark black that is really a dark garnet when tilted to the light. There was a rather small head of tan bubbles that were tight and looked rather creamy on top. They didn't completely cover the beer, but still made a lasting impression.

Aroma: This is where my senses aren't the best. I can get the obvious chocolate and coffee notes, but that can be had just from the label. The beer is really clean smell ing overall with some toasty notes in addition to the more obvious aromas I mentioned earlier.

Taste: The flavor is really clean with all of the required coffee and roast, and some toasty notes all present like the aroma presented, but the thing about this beer is that it blends really well on the palate. Even with all of the "acid sounding" things in its name, the beer remains palatable and easily drinkable. I like the finish as it is only slightly sweet and lingers with the coffee notes and creamy-like slickness on the back of the throat for some time after the sip.

Opinion: Again, my senses aren't as sharp as I would like them to be, but this beer looked good for a review right now. Anyway, I am only one beer shy (now) of killing the entire 6-pack myself within 2-days, so I would say that it is a really good beer no doubt and dangerously drinkable. I would definitely like to drink this one again, and often. I may even consider this style of beer to have on tap here at the house once in a while. Very nice beer!

Photo of steve8robin
3.66/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Got this one from a good friend...

A: Appearance is perfect in color, but lacking in head. The head starts as a thin, white lace, but very quickly dissipates to nothing.

S: Smell is a very heavy coffee. Since I love coffee, the smell is awesome.

T: Aftertaste of coffee, but taste a lot of water in the brew.

M: Mediocre carbonation. Nothing special.

D: Good if you enjoy coffee. Otherwise, this is no good.

All in all, I love the coffee flavor, so I enjoy this brew. Once I taste it, though, is where the battle begins. Too much water and carbonation for my taste.

Photo of theghost3
3.95/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Real Ale Coffee Porter was one of the few regional beers I could find in Harlingen, TX, so I went for it.

Pours a deep mahogany brown with a 2-finger, fluffy light brown head. Minimal lacing.

It smells strongly of roasted coffee with some chocolate. The taste is basically coffee...quality, rich coffee. There are some burnt malt & chocolate edges to this, but still, this is essentially boozed coffee. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied, slightly acidic.

Overall, this is a drinkable porter. I'm glad I had it around to keep me awake while in Harlingen.

Photo of Anthony1
3.12/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours black with amber tints at the edges. The beige head thins to a film leaving no lace.

The nose is predominantly coffee, with some chocolate. Sweet chocolate and dark fruit flavors. The finish is a nice roasted, coffee bitterness with a bit of lingering fruitiness. Medium-bodied, moderately high carbonation. Some graininess.

Shade Grown Coffee Porter from Real Ale Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 352 ratings.