Full Sail Imperial Porter - Full Sail Brewery at Riverplace / The Pilsner Room
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Ratings: 35 | Reviews: 26 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by cvstrickland:
4.05/5 rDev +4.7%
22-ounce bomber bottle, courtesy of Wasatch. Thanks, John!
The brew pours a super-dark burnt-chestnut color, the hue borderlining ink-black save a twinkle of dusty ruby at the extreme periphery, and is trimmed with a half-finger's depth of creamy khaki-colored foam. From the get-go, an aroma of toffee and licorice-laced dark coffee languishes above a fading bubble-cap that finally comes to rest at a broken sheet, leaving a thin ragged web of lacing clinging to the inside of my dimpled seidel.
The taste is dark and roasty with notes of black coffee accented with a tad of bitter baker's chocolate. As the drink warms a bit, a sweeter chocolate note topped with a sprinkle of crushed toffee begins to shine, but a mildly-tangy touch of char and a dusty hop note emerge in short order, squelching the uprising, keeping the overall character of Imperial Porter quite dry and politely bitter.
This is one easy-drinking brew for one with an ABV of 7.5%, and is surprisingly light-medium in body with superfine carbonation. I would keep this one in the fridge all the time if I could get it in the Down East. Thanks again for the opportunity, John!
11-17-2009 21:59:55 | More by cvstrickland
More User Reviews:
3.93/5 rDev +1.6%
I've been in this rap/beer game so long I can remember when you could get this in 12 oz bottles in a 6pack. Anyways, was about the biggest porter you could find back in the 90s. Its appearance is very black, head is tan, ok, seriously, an imperial porter is at least a standard stout. I digress.
Aroma of deep charred coffee malt, big woody notes. Gritty powder cocoa taste, super chewy, bitterness held in check somehow. Small amount of sweetness in there, but its very small compared to all the other big ass flavors.
Very good, thick beer, somewhere between a sipper and a refresher (leaning to the sipping side), wish Full Sail still had these in 6packs.
05-24-2011 22:17:38 | More by Beerandraiderfan
3.65/5 rDev -5.7%
Pours a thick black with a tan head. A whiskey, fruity banana nose that's subtle but pleasant.
A bit thin in the mouth but gets better as it sits in the glass a few minutes, and flavors are somewhat straightforward. Simple coffee, roasted malt flavors and character with little complexities or layers. Nice but straightforward.
Light carbonation and medium finish primarily of light hops and light coffee. Decent but simple and nothing special. More like a stout than a porter.
Nose is strong point and initial flavors in the mouth are very good. Decent simple coffee finish that ends with some nice hops. Gets better all around with some time in the glass.
07-18-2009 00:59:02 | More by GRG1313
4/5 rDev +3.4%
A) nice lacing. tiny bubbles floating to top; well carbonated. looks thin and porter like.
S) cocoa, coconut, molasses
T) exactly what smelled but also some vanilla as well. Lots of smokiness
F) smooth, nice mouthful for porter.
D) This is a great imperial porter. but this becomes on of my favorite burboun beers once it becomes the Top Sail BA.
09-21-2009 04:58:14 | More by mykie73
4.05/5 rDev +4.7%
Poured a nice dark, dark brown with a tan head that dissipated quickly to crown the beer in the glass. Definite coffee and chocolate aroma typical of the malts. Ample bitterness with the roasted malts and some very prevalent sweetness backing it up. Great complexities of flavors with a nice smooth, yet still chewy feel. Drinks easy and smooth. ABV is not so high to limit consumption greatly.
02-13-2010 04:57:40 | More by jacobseyb
4.05/5 rDev +4.7%
Full Sail Imperial Porter
Poured from bomber into Duvel. Generated a half inch head of caramel colored head with decent retention. Thins down to a small ring which lingers throughout. Some spotty lacing here and there.
Some chocolate on the nose, as well as a bit of alcohol and dark fruit. Very faint molasses as well. The aroma is rather delicate, but with a nice complexity.
Taste starts with baking chocolate, some light vinous qualities, a bit more chocolate again, and a small bitter at the finish. Not much in the way of roasted or burnt flavor, except a small lingering after the finish. Some dark fruit (currant maybe) in there toward the center. There is some roasted coffee here and there, but the other flavors seem to overwhelm.
Mouthfeel is a bit thin considering the ABV, but the carbonation provides a good balance considering the lightness on the palette. The carbonation is held at bay pretty well, without overpowering the rest of the brew.
Overall a good brew with a nice complexity, even though it isn't intense in any way. I'd buy again, especially for the price/size/ABV.
03-15-2010 22:04:41 | More by Flashsp2
3.7/5 rDev -4.4%
$3.99 for 22 oz. bomber.
Pours jet black with a towering dark tan head. Good retention and a fairly high amount of lacing on this one. Quite impressive pour.
Nose is loaded with rich, fruity malts. Black grapes, boysenberries, cookies, and dark candi sugar. This one seems fairly sweet. I dig it in the nose, but let's hope the taste has some roast in it to balance and dry it out.
Taste is moderately sweet, with a good amount of dark fruit dominating the palate. There are some nice roast flavors, smooth coffee, slightly earthy, that do come to the rescue, the result is a fairly tasty brew. Lots of those black grapes still dominate, though, and the finish has sugary cookie dough. Overall a nice blend of flavors, decent complexity, pretty good stuff even though in the end it is still a bit sweet. Medium to full body is not so heavy, but does have a very nice, almost oatmeal slickness to it. Medium-high carbonation, which I feel is appropriate to prevent cloying.
A pretty nice imperial porter, actually one of the best Full Sail products I have had, better than their imperial stout for sure. Relative bargain too at this price. Also recommend the barrel aged version.
09-27-2009 02:43:55 | More by vacax
3.6/5 rDev -7%
Look: black with a brown ring around the bottom of the beer. Wonderful tan 1 inch head with decent retention and good lacin
Smell: Faint hints of coffee and roasted malt. Dark chocolate is present but all the scents are very faint
Taste: Follows the nose. there is not much going on upfront but in the middle and end is where the flavors really start to shine. roasted malt and traces of chocolate coffee and nuts are there
Mouthfeel: Medium to full with a medium level of carbonation and a slightly dry finish
Overall: I really hoped this beer was gonna be better. However it lacks flavor. I want my imperial porters to be full of flavor and this one is not. Damn you full sail for letting me down on this one
07-18-2011 01:16:15 | More by DarthKostrizer
4.55/5 rDev +17.6%
Tasted on-tap 06/04/07 at the Full Sail Riverfront Brewpub in Portland, OR.
Feb 2007 Limited Release in the Brewmaster's Reserve series.
Solid black in color with a decent dark brown head and good lace. A very ROASTY Imperial Stout-like brew. Lots of roasted malt, chocolate, and coffee on the nose and mouth. Full bodied and smooth with a big roasted malt and chocolate finish.
Per FS website:
04-18-2008 18:12:30 | More by RBorsato
3.6/5 rDev -7%
Consumed 07/10/09 at 59 degrees F in a standard pint glass. Bottle indicates this is the 2009 release.
Clear, deep mahogany brown liquid quickly generates a three-finger tan head of creamy medium to small sized bubbles. Lots of active bubbles visible in the glass.
Aroma of red grapes and cocoa.
Flavor of roasted cocoa most notable. That red grape thing is there in the background, as is some charcoal. Moderate alcohol heat present. Slight bitterness on finish seems more a function of overroast malt than hops.
Smooth mouthfeel, slightly creamy, somewhere between chewy and oily. Also, somwhat dry. Very present on the tongue - slightly tingly but not especially dry.
The ABV feels a little higher than the bottle insists and the flavor is a bit on the two-dimensional side, so I don't think this has especially good drinkability or repeat drinking value. A solid base hit, but not a home run.
07-11-2009 01:17:36 | More by charlzm
4.65/5 rDev +20.2%
A: As I pour the deep black beer that calls itself an imperial porter, rather than an imperial stout as it should be labeled, a thick, creamy, chocolate-colored foam emerges, rumbling out of the thick brew. This beer doesn't let light through, and it doesn't apologize for not doing so. The lush, fluffy head slowly falls to a tiny, though everlasting, skin of microbubbles atop the motor oil.
S: Aromas of molasses and honey are the first to emerge, sticky and sweet. Then, with a stronger sniff, much more hops come through. Raisins, toffee, and espresso are present, as well as a smidge of nutty, biscuit aroma, all from the malts, along with tarry pine and juniper, and a citrusy pineapple scent, all from the hops.
T: WOW! Dark, roasty smoked malts. Strong hop bite. A slight burn from the alcohol, but not much as expected, as it is well hidden behind the deep, black malts. Or is that roasted barley? The hops are bitter but still very earthy. A noble hop, perhaps Mt. Hood? Most of the same tastes as the above smells, with the addition of vanilla and a thicker, smokier taste than the smell suggests.
M: Creamy, like an oatmeal stout. The strong hops give a fair amount of astringency, but this is a very smooth beer considering its potency. The carbonation perfectly balances the creamyness and the sharpness.
D: I want to say high, but unfortunately, the 7.5% alcohol content and the 22oz. size bind me, since that much ethanol would make one bomber enough to destroy my ability to evaluate any subsequent beers, so I have to demote the drinkability to medium.
Remarkably similar to Flying Dog's Gonzo, this is a perfect imperial porter. There was a snowstorm today, and I cannot fathom a better beer for a frigid winter night than this beer. It is rich and smoky, deep and complex, and most importantly, warming
03-22-2010 04:51:09 | More by SPThirtyThree
4.05/5 rDev +4.7%
A really big Imperial Porter. Aroma was that of burnt coffee. Poured into a plastic glass so very little head and no lacing was possible to be observed. Lots of roasted malt and barley flavor, hard to tell why they call this a porter as I thought it was more like a stout, nonetheless is was good. Nice alcohol warming. Lots of roasted malt flavor, you can almost chew this one.
06-21-2009 19:01:29 | More by bigbelcher
4.15/5 rDev +7.2%
Taken from my notes after Lucky Baldwins Barleywine/Imperial Stout Festival 2008.
Pours black and viscous with a nice tight head that died down quickly but continued to cling to the sides of the taster glass ALL the way down.
Nose wasn't overtly pronounced. Dark chocolate, roasted malts, VERY slight hint of coffee.
Taste was a very pleasant malt sweetness up front that mellowed but was abruptly follow by some intensly roasted malts that very quickly sat up and then faded off (verbatim from my notes "...rather odd" LOL). The finish was clean and crisp, much more mellow and drinkable than expected based on the ABV (which was listed as being much higher on the beer list provided but alas, not noted in my chicken scratch).
05-08-2008 04:42:47 | More by gwood
3.45/5 rDev -10.9%
22 oz bottle poured into New Belgium tulip
Brewmaster Reserve 2009
a - Pours an opaque black color with a small 1/2 inch tan head. Lacing is full and consistent around the glass as the head fades. Looks like a stout to me.
s - Intense smoke and earthy peat flavors dominate the scent along with alcoholic spiciness. A good dose of sweet molasses and dark caramel contributes strongly. Some dark fruit flavor helps out.
t - Starts with sweet dark fruit flavors (plum, raisin) & sweet, dark molasses flavor. Smoke flavor comes on quickly & plays a strong role, perhaps too strong for many tastes. Finish is somewhat bitter & dry with residual smoke & sweetness contributing.
m - Fairly high carbonation with a medium to full mouthfeel that isn't too viscous. Finish is very bitter and dry, with the smoke flavor contributing to the dry sensation.
d - Not my favorite offering from Full Sail, as I thought it was overly smokey and unbalanced. Alcohol plays a role at 8.5%, so you may want to share this bomber. Not a beer you must pick up, but if you like smokey porters then you should try it out.
08-14-2009 23:36:37 | More by gmcfarre
3.95/5 rDev +2.1%
A: pours black at the bottom, thinning to a translucent brown towards the surface. Head is light tan, and settles quickly. Lacing is very decent.
S: Mainly dark malt character with notes of dried fruit, toffee, chocolate, and coffee. The hops are almost non-present.
T: The beer starts off with caramel, chocolate, coffee, and dried fruit character. It is more balanced in the flavor than the smell. Hops lend a nice dry finish to it.
M: The one thing this beer lacks for it's style. It is a bit thin on the palate, especially for being called an imperial porter.
D: Full Sail did a good job with this release. Although lacking in body, the flavors and aromas are very nice, and is quite easy to drink. Not my favorite porter, but it's still worth a try.
03-05-2010 05:59:53 | More by WYVYRN527
3.9/5 rDev +0.8%
Had this from a 22 oz bomber in Portland, OR on 2009-03-29.
A - A black brew with a foamy, brown head with good retention.
S - Mild caramel and coffee
T - Bold, toasted malt with caramel and coffee. Nice finish with medium hop bitterness. Nice.
M - Very creamy with mild carbonation
D - Good flavors make this a nice treat but not a session beer.
03-27-2010 13:14:48 | More by Tucquan
3.3/5 rDev -14.7%
Poured into a Remy Martin snifter.
Appearance: The brown head is very slow to form, and pretty quick to leave. Retention is downright bad. Decent lacing though, which is surprising. Body is black and totally opaque - quite impressive actually. (Last pour was beautiful: lots of dense head and lots of webby lacing.)
Smell: Roasted malt, charred caramel, coffee, and other residual sugars. Muddled, but pleasant.
Taste: Roasted malt, charred caramel, and dark chocolate are the most apparent flavors at first. Beer finishes roasty with firm, salty bitterness. Toffee emerges later on.
Mouthfeel: Thin, especially for something with the "imperial" label. Lightly carbonated, sugary, and dry in the finish. Aftertaste is mild, roasty, and enjoyable. (Last pour yielded a body that was actually creamy and pretty nice.)
Drinkability: Nothing special here. Hardly "imperial" in my book: thin in body, and lacking in complexity/richness. Would not buy again, even at just $4.00/bomber.
12-05-2009 04:05:36 | More by ThreeWiseMen
3.03/5 rDev -21.7%
first review here. much to learn.
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | drink: 3
22 oz bottle poured into my usual brandy snifter
brewmaster reserve 2009
a - opaque, bomber-jacket black with dark brown edges. head has a pleasing creamed coffee appearance. head dissipates slowly with good lacing.
s -roast (as opposed to charred barrel) smoke, burnt caramel. after swirling and agitation, vegetables & smoke. not quite the sharpness of peat smoke, but close.
t - a touch of sweet before the smoke comes at full-bore. sweet fades quickly and simmers into a lingering bitterness.
m - carbonation tickles the tongue, comes on strong and fades quickly; not overly numbing for such a smokey brew. average viscosity for a stout. bitterness is very present and lingers long on the palate. i was spitting long afterward as my saliva glands went into overdrive.
d - i picked it up because i enjoy most of what full sail offers. definitely recommend pairing this with a strong meat or cheese dish, as this brew could benefit from something to balance the smokiness, and pick up where the flavor lags.
08-29-2009 03:04:42 | More by teetotaler
Full Sail Imperial Porter from Full Sail Brewery at Riverplace / The Pilsner Room
86 out of 100 based on 35 ratings.