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Portsmouth Kate The Great - Portsmouth Brewery

Not Rated.
Portsmouth Kate The GreatPortsmouth Kate The Great

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BA SCORE
100
world-class

903 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 903
Reviews: 487
rAvg: 4.54
pDev: 10.35%
Wants: 2,695
Gots: 170 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Portsmouth Brewery visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: bewareOFpenguin on 04-07-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 903 | Reviews: 487 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tittymcj
4.9/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Drank one glass of this at KtG day, and one bomber with my roommates.

Poured out an intensely thick black, with a beautiful tan colored head that didn't stick around for very long. Good lacing throughout.

The smell is unbelievable. The first thing that hits is the coffee and roasted malts, along with some chocolate. However, once you get past those thrills, the grape/wine portion comes into play heavily, and you can definitely smell the classic wine profile.

The taste is even better. Everything you would expect from this beer and more. Chocolate, coffee, chocolate coated fruits, chocolate-coffee wine. Just an incredible taste experience.

Mouthfeel is very deep. Not too thick, but thick enough to make sure that the flavor lingers. It forces you to recognize the different layers of flavor, and then when it leaves, it doesn't take the flavor residue with it.

Drinkability, despite my wishes to give this beer an overall 5 rating, cannot be so. I could drink many many many of these, simply because they are so delicious, but I can't justify giving such a heavy, flavorful beer a 5 on drinkability

Photo of zerofear13
4.85/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I think KtG is more about the experience more than anything else. I had the pleasure of driving up to Portsmouth with my friend for the cold Monday release. The brewpub was enjoyable, the people were friendly, I skipped a bunch of classes - so overall, it was a great time.

We waited a few weeks before trying KtG. We only had one bottle to split among the B.A.R. 6 crew. Poured out an amazing dark color. Not much of a head, which was surprising, but the lacing was spectacular. Smelled of very sweet chocolates, smokey roasted flavors, and dark fruits. Taste was just phenomenal. I rarely give 5's in taste, but this is most definitely a 5. I think the most impressive thing about KtG is the complexity of the flavors. The obvious roasted smokey flavors are apparent. The sweet chocolate and caramel is apparent. But then in the background that addition of port adds in those dark fruit flavors - raisin, grape, etc. And it's the perfect amount so that it's an imperial stout with dark fruit flavors instead of a dark abbey ale that has chocolate, smokey flavors. Wonderful, wonderful balance. Smooth, creamy, but also acidic, slick mouthfeel.

The beer was well worth the wait outside in almost freezing temperatures. And I cannot wait for the next KtG Day.

Photo of tjthresh
4.06/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle. Pours pure black with a dab of brown head. The aroma is light with cocoa and I get a bit of vanilla or marshmallow fluff. The flavor is a bit more chocolaty, with a roasted edge. I found this to be more subtle that most of the "bash you over the head" type imperial stouts that we've come to love. In a night were we had the complete set of Dark Lord, this was a welcome addition.

Photo of lynx1245
4.11/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Nick of ThreeWiseMen for sharing this one with me. You rock buddy! Almost feel like I'm not giving this one a fair chance since I just drank some Abyss and loved that so much. This is a different animal for sure.

Appearance: Head appear slowly after pouring. Not much retention but leaves a good halo. Completely opaque black body. Leaves an oil-slick look on top of the liquid.

Smell: Dark chocolate and molasses. I tried and tried but couldn't get much more out of it. Where's the complexity? Still very pleasant smell.

Taste: Burnt malts and very sweet molasses. Dark chocolate too! I do like the taste, but like I mentioned it might not be fair to be grading this after having enjoyed Abyss so much.

Mouthfeel: Very alcoholic. It's actually quite gritty, but still smooth at the same time. Very interesting.

Drinkability: Kate is most definitely great, but only in moderation. This one kicks you on your ass.

Photo of TStandley13
4.47/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured a jet black color. Bit oily in appearance. No head at all.

S - Interesting smell, detected more of a roasty character than either chocolate or coffee.

T- Ahh delicious. Definitely not how I had anticipated however. First taste is a nice smokey flavor, followed by some caramel chocolate. Finishes with a nice malty kick. Faint taste of wine throughout.

M - Good mouthfeel!

D - Could definitely put away some of these. Doesn't overwhelm your mouth as much as some other imperials, which is actually quite pleasant.

Photo of tai4ji2x
4/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(NOTE 4/2011 - positive re-reviews are backlogged and forthcoming)

from my cellphone notes on kate day 2009 (monday feb 9)

served in a tulip glass.

opaque, midnight black. tan head fades to wisps. lacing never sticks however.

quite fruity in the aroma, with raisins, apple and dark cherries. hint of cocoa. gentle whiff of alcohol.

flavors are similarly sweet and fruity, with some roasted chocolatey malt, and a hint of coffee. notes of vanilla. surprisingly moderate hop bitterness with more coffee again in the finish.

feel is very smooth and lightly syrupy, with only a touch of alcohol. gentle to moderate carbonation can bring creaminess. don't know if maybe it's actually more carbonated on first pour, because i had to warm up this glass in my hands for about ten minutes - they still serve this beer way too cold for my taste. i was repeatedly rubbing my hands together to warm them up again before holding the glass each time.

a good imperial stout, but this year's batch is perhaps overly fruity, and the head retention and lacing was a glaring disappointment. i've seen photos of previous batches with lovely head and lace, so i was underwhelmed this time around. my brother and i were absolutely wowed by this beer at the '08 EBF (probably the '07 batch), and kept going back for multiple samples. i didn't make it to the summer '08 release, but my brother did and said it was too hot and overly hoppy. seems they went in the other direction for this release.

oh well. i'll see how the bottles age.

Photo of schinebd
4.73/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Served in Portsmouth Brewery tulip. Its very black - shocker.

S - Quite pleasing - syrupy and pleasant. A little booze in the smell. I did have to jam my nose way into the glass to pull a decent sniff though.

T- This beer doesn't immediately assault your pallet like most extremes - it has sneak attack. At first I was thrown off - I expected my tongue to be assaulted by a barrage of flavors. Instead the taste lingered, with syrupy, carmely flavors flowing seamlessly into bitter chocolate and hops. Not a beer that makes you say "HOLY CRAP!" but rather a beer that makes you smirk and utter "Well done..."

M - Magnificent. Not too think, definitely not watery (the biggest sin in stoutsville). Smoothly runs over the tongue, slowly waking up every taste bud you have, and then pleasantly lingers.

D - Probably the biggest leg up this beer has on others of its style. I feel like I could drink 5 of these. I love Imperial Stouts, but usually one is enough. The flavor is so complex that its like a bizarre question with the answer in reach, and each sip feels like it brings you closer to the answer, so you take keep on drinking...

Let me just say that this beer is why I love being a Beer Advocate. A rare beer that only very few people will ever get to try. Seeking out and experiencing beers like this is what keeps the hobby interesting. Proud to say I was able to try it.

Photo of pd360
5/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I was lucky enough to get a taste of Kate on Monday before they ran out. I was too late to buy any bottles though. It really did live up to the hype, I was nervous about it being a let down, but that was not the case. It was thick and rich, like drinking a cold melted dark chocolate bar. Surprising amount of alcohol in there. Our server said this one was at 12%, and after 2 beers it packs a punch. Worthy of the praise and if you get a chance to try it, its worth the wait.

Photo of Imstillthegman
4.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Finally able to try this elusive brew. Straight from the tap just moments after the release on 2/9/09. In a word : WOW!

This one came to me in a Portsmouth snifter. Deep, dark and reminiscent of motor oil but not as viscous. Dark tan head quickly faded to a ring. Some nice areas of lacing remained on the glass. This dark beauty was daring me to drink her.

The aroma, at first sniff, was big on the alcohol. Once I got passed the alcohol I noticed some bitter bakers chocolate, dark fruits, espresso malts, brown sugar, molasses, and some Port. Quite the combination.

The flavor...oh, my...the flavor. The first sip was a smack in the face. The alcohol, bakers chocolate, figs, and vanilla were in the beginning a shock to my system. I took a deep breath, exhaled, and went back for more. Wow. Amazing. Fantabulous. This beer was so damn good that I could have kept drinking it all night...oh, wait, I did. ;-) The flavors blended together masterfully. The tang of the molasses, the sweetness of the vanilla, bitterness of the bakers chocolate and espresso, the slightly soured smoothness of the dark fruits and the burn of the alcohol all combined to create a remarkable experience.

Smooth, full bodied brew. Nicely warming from the alcohol...especially on a day as cold as this one was. This beer just kept getting better with each glass. The atmosphere, I'm sure, added to the great experience of trying this beer and made it even better. Great job, Tod!

Photo of cleeze
4.97/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Talk about a life changing brew! I feel greatly privalaged to even have gotten a chance to taste it let alone take some home!

Poured a black as night oil color. Small head, with little lacing.

Smell was dark roast, some chocolate along with some coffee notes.

TASTE WAS SIMPLY AMAZING! So sweet. I truely believe I could of put back many more. Chocolate was present along with a bit of vanilia and some caramel.

Like I said the alcohol is barely present and it's so sweet that it goes down too smooth. Well worth the hype

Photo of RomanW70
4.78/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Just an awsome beer that more than lived up to it's hype. Pours oil black with dark brown lacing. Aroma of molasses, roast, and chocolate. Tast is incredible, alcohol is barely present. Has strong cocoa and molasses flavor that are present right through to the end and then slights into a medium bitter finish. Just a beautiful finish, equal parts sweet and bitter. What a treat!

Photo of Hojaminbag
4.45/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On-tap at the brewery. Maybe that is redundant because where else would I get it on tap?

Deep, black body that is opaque at the center, but allows light to pass through on the very edges, where the beer exhibits some ruby hues. A finger of brown head doesn't last very long and doesn't really leave anything behind. No lacing here.

This smells good, but it is not a very powerful aroma. Some dark fruits, but packed with malty sweetness. Sweet caramel and chocolate.

This is a tasty one. That little bit of dark fruits from the nose is also muted in the flavor, surfacing as only a touch of fig. I notice just a little spiciness from the hops too, adding a slight bitterness, but this is also rather muted. The star of this beer is a great sweetness that features caramel, and to a greater extent, chocolate. Both of these flavors are powerful, but not overpowering or cloying. Nicely balanced, very well done. If you swish this one around quite a bit you can find just a little bit of heat from the alcohol, but it is tiny and not immediately noticeable.

Mouthfeel might be a little lighter than I would like, but I'm not going to hold that against the beer. The crisp, balanced flavors aren't beating you in the face or big and complex. Rather, they are nuanced and refined, and I think the mouthfeel reflects that.

As far as drinkability goes, this one might be tops for a big stout. I drank 3 tulips and would never have stopped if I didn't have to leave. This is tatsy, well-balanced and not remotely like what I would call hot. The alcohol is ridiculously well hidden and the balance is great. Honestly, I approached this beer expecting to be disappointed by it because of all the hype surrounding it. I tried to keep an open mind, and I must say it is quite a good beer.

Photo of WanderingFool
4.15/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Kate the Great pours a midnight black into the glass with a hint of ruby around the edges when held to the light. The frothy tan head on top dissolves quickly to a thin ring around the beer leaving only a few spots of lace on the glass.

The aroma is malty with notes of chocolate, nuts and alcohol. Each sip of this medium to full bodied beer is very smooth and silky with just a mild fizz that tingles the tip of the tongue. The flavor is much like the aroma with chocolate, nuts, coffee and alcohol. At the end some hop bitterness is detected. It finishes dry and leaves behind flavors of chocolate and a hint of bitter hops.

Kate is definitely a great sipping beer. I wish I got a couple of bottles to age because I think it would be better if the alcohol nose and taste mellowed out a bit. Honestly though, I'm not sure it's worth all the hype.

Photo of IBUnit63
4.85/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served on-tap by Tod (my bad for misspelling your name in the Official KtG day thread - sorry Tod!) himself at KtG day a few minutes after the first tapping...into a Portsmouth snifter. Finally! Let's see if Kate can bring it...and how...

Pours an ultra-dark brown - more than dark chocolate or espresso. Maybe combine those with licorice or Sambuca black and you goddit. A bit of viscosity but not terribly thick. Ginger head is just under a finger - sticks OK with a bit of lacing.

Brown sugar is front and center on the nose with a good alcohol burn. The dark roasted malt is so clean, though, on the backdrop. In a word...silky.

I'm at a loss for words here and can't really describe this...incredible! So much vanilla and roast combines in Beautiful Chemistry with the mild brown sugar and a little milk chocolate. Hops are on deep background but there's a nice woody, grassy quotient that dries this up nicely. Absolutely perfect.

The palate feel is perfectly balanced. Not too light, not too heavy. Not too much of anything but just enough of everything, as overabundant as this may be. It doesn't come off as a caricature - all elements fire on all cylinders.

Now the warning. Because this is so smooth, it drinks way, way WAY too easily for its ABV. Goes down quicker than (insert name of decrepit cherished female relative of your mortal enemy here) on the 29th of the month with rent due. This has got to be the best beer I've tasted to date. I guess it has the sweetness of Dark Lord with the dryness of Darkness, and it all ends up in perfect balance. Out-friggin'-standing. The trip to Portsmouth was well worth it.

Photo of Stockfan42
5/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This was highly worth the trip and the wait. Highly recommend going to the next release when ever that may be. I could not get there early enough to get some bottles to take home but still a very good time and very good beer.

I did not get to see the actual pour of the beer, my seating was in the center dining area right near the bar that was full of people who had gotten in before me,but im happy to just HAVE a seat and enjoy the occasion. So KTG gets dropped off on my table and I waste no time picking it up and sipping away.

Its a Dark, creamy beer with a pretty dark tan head that smells of fruit and chocolate. Not really overpowering but a nice coffee or mocha smell also reveals itself.

It has a very dark chocolat malt flavour that isnt overdone at all, and a sweetness from some figs and plums, maybe some raisons too. Its not that heavy, but heavy enough to fill you with just 1 to 2 servings (3 servings put me on my ass for a little bit).

The beer goes down really smooth and leaves a great after taste that does not dissapoint. I highly recommend trying this beer if you ever have the oppertunity.

Photo of rhinos00
4.85/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served on-tap @ Portsmouth Brewery for KtG day. I set all the positive and negative comments to the side and was objective as I could possibly be in reviewing this beer.

A- Pours a dark, licorice black. Reveals a fingers width of tan head that slowly dissipates throughout consumption.

S- Wonderful aroma of dark chocolates and malts. Also detectable was hints of raisins and various other fruits.

T- Wow! Nothing fancy, just straight, simple goodness. Great chocolate character with a heavy malt presence. The chocolate is infused perfectly, not over bearing, but just enough. Mixed with this is a subtle sweetness from raisins, figs and plums.

M- One of the best bodies on a beer I have ever had. Thick and viscous with a creamy body feel that just fills you right up.

D- This beer is truly a meal within itself. It is so smooth and gives off a nice alcohol warmth that is welcome on this cold New Enlgand day.

Overall, this beer truly is awesome. It is a perfect example of what a chocolate RIS should taste like. The true masterpiece in this beer is that it is not done up with bourbon barrels and tons of other ingredients, but is simple and well crafted. Highly recommended.

Photo of mikeale
5/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

February 09 bottling. Served in my new Portsmouth snifter.
Worth the wait in line!
Yes Perfect 5's!

A. Pitch black body with tan head. The head disipates in a few minutes with nice lacing.

S. Very complex. I'm getting hints of rum soaked fruits, coffee, and chocolate.

T. Mocha, creamy chocolate, malted milk balls, do I keep going or when do I stop? Roasted malt the hops are so balenced.

M. rich, creamy, warming alochol

D. Highly drinkable! I'm restraining myself from getting another from my stash! Not as thick as the Dark Lord. My wife said "the Stone IRS has a bite but Kate does'nt"

When the camera crew came around and interveiwed my wife, daughter and myself, they asked my wife how she felt about my love of the other woman Kate. My wife responded "we have an open marriage when it comes to beer".

I love Kate! She is great!

Photo of masterhomebrewer
4.8/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Props to Portsmouth Brewery for brewing this bad boy. Went up on KTG Day hoping to walk away with a couple bottles. Tapping was at 1:20. I arrived at 1:30, saw the line of a few hundred, and realized I'd be lucky to even get a taste. The bottles were sold out by 10am, I learned. Plenty more on tap, though, and I finally got my glass from the tap at 4:30pm.

A -- Black as death. One inch head of loose bubbles that slowly faded to a thicker 1/2-inch head.

S -- Aroma was more faint than I expected -- and the 9.5% ABV was well hidden. Some creamy coffee/chocolate notes.

T -- Big, dark and chocolatey, sweet coffee, toffee and caramel. Closes out with an amazing sweet, salty chocolate that lingers for several minutes, offering more and more. Just unbelievable and unprecedented.

M -- Think and chewy, no doubt, but a slight letdown against the huge mix of intense flavors. Hard to live up to all that flavor, so it felt slightly thinner in the month.

D -- A leg up on other Imperial Stouts, as I could actually drink several glasses in one sitting.

Overall just an amazingly well-crafted RIS, and far and away the finest American-produced beer in my experience.

Photo of MasterSki
4.38/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge, huge, thanks to Dave (d0b) for busting this out at our "mini" tasting (there was nothing mini about this tasting!). Shared with three Daves and our associated women-folk. Summer '08 bottle served in a FOBAB taster glass.

A - One-finger of mocha foam with solid retention an some spotty lacing. Blacker than black color, with only the slightest bit of red at the edges when held to the light. Reminded me of the incredible-looking Homewood Reserve, but without the same volume.

S - Sweet roast malts, cream, milk chocolate, dark fruits, a hint of smoky wood, and a surprising touch of booziness. The alcohol was a surprise, as this was one of the lower ABV stouts we had and many of the others in the tasting didn't smell as hot. This one takes a while to warm up, BTW.

T - The taste was terrific. Sweet roast malts, bittersweet chocolate, a hint of coffee with a ton of cream and sugar, and a touch of cherry & dark fruits. The booziness I smelled is gone. This is what I expect from a non barrel-aged RIS.

M - Medium viscosity, low carbonation, creamy and incredibly smooth. Lots of residual stickiness afterward. It's nice to occasionally have a stout that doesn't have the consistency of a motor-oil milkshake, yet is still bursting with flavor.

D - This is possibly as easy drinking as it gets for a RIS. Low carbonation, well-hidden alcohol, smooth and not overly heavy. It's just a great-drinking brew.

So - some general impressions after knocking off the last of the big stouts. Kate is a wonderful brew, but she's kind of like that attractive girl in class that's kind of quiet. You take her out and expect her to open up and reveal a little more about herself, but she never does. KtG lacks the strong signature and personality that each of the other big stouts have - Abyss has those delicate hints of coffee and barrel-aging, Darkness has the candy and ridiculous hop presence, Dark Lord has the mouthfeel of a shake. Kate is subtle and shy, and a tiny, tiny, bit of a letdown (or as much of a letdown as a 4.4 beer can be).

Still well worth seeking out, but temper your expectations.

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
4.3/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Acquired this in a trade with RustyDiamond. Split it with my buddy Trevor (lynx1245), and in exchange he split his 2008 Abyss with me. We tasted the two back-to-back, and both crowned The Abyss the winner. With that said, KtG was very good, just not Abyss good.

2008 bottle. Poured into a snifter.

Appearance: Gently rising carbonation slowly erects a 1/4-inch-tall, brown head atop the rich, black body. Kate looks thick and slick, and is totally opaque. Unfortunately, that head that took so long to build fades to a mere brown halo in less than a minute. What gives? Decent lacing.

Smell: Took each of us a while to smell anything other than chocolate. I got milk chocolate; Trevor claimed dark. After it warms, however, Kate smells quite nice. Molasses was the second smell to be noted (again, by each of us), followed by roasted malt, burnt sugar, and cherries.

Taste: Like the smell, the taste got stronger and more complex as the beer warmed. Flavors included roasted malt, alcohol-soaked cherries, dark chocolate, molasses, and fruity ester-like alcohol. Overall, quite sugary. Finishes sharp, sticky, and a bit dry.

Mouthfeel: Gritty, syrupy, warm, sticky, and full. Coats the mouth well, but lacks that creaminess that's present in most of my favorite RIS's.

Drinkability: New subtleties continued popping up til the very last sip. Wish I had some more actually. (Maybe I shouldn't have shared?) With that said, my expectations fell short on this one. It was a delicious RIS, but I was hoping for something that would knock my socks off, and this just didn't do it. Would drink again (in a heartbeat), but not worth the hunt IMHO.

Photo of tedpeer
4.55/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

thanks to johnnnniee for this 08 vintage in a trade.

bomber poured into a tulip.

A - Poured black, with a quarter inch mocha head that quickly dissipated. No lacing. Not as thick as Dark Lord.

S - Dark fruit, chocolate, coffee.

T - Complex. Chocolate and Coffee up front. Malt in the middle. Slight alcohol warmth.

M - Low carbonation. Medium thickness. Smooth.

D - Pretty balanced, but still butt kicking.

Photo of nrbw23
4.21/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

A- Pours a thick dark black color (like motor oil) with a one finger tan head. Left some nice lacing as well.

S- Aromas of chocolate, dark fruit, roasted, malts, and a hint of coffee. Overall, just a touch lighter than I expected.

T- A really rich and complex taste. Lots of roasted malt and chocolate flavour up front. Some coffee tries to sneak in but is drowned out by a rich dark fruit flavor (mainly cherries and raisins). There also seems to be a touch of oak on the finish

M- Smooth, full-bodied, creamy and low carbonation.

D- This was extremely easy to drink. Actually way to easy to drink. Highly
recommended.

Photo of tburkhart
4.12/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received a bottle of 2008 KtG in the New Traders BIF. Shared with BA raznug a few minutes into 2009.

Pours jet black with nice caramel head.

Smells of roasted chocolate.

Tastes of dark malts.

The mouthfeel is think. Very solid.

The alcohol does come through a bit as it warms, but it is still very nice. Don't let it detour you from trying KtG.

Photo of PretzelCity
4.65/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had a 22oz bomber from the July? release 2008. Poured this sucker into my glass with much anticipation and wasn't disappointed. It's dark, real dark, with a nice two inch head. The smell is classic roasted malts and chocolate but nothing is overpowering or out of place. The taste is more of the same. The key to this beer for me was smoothness, from smell to taste. It was complex, well balanced, top quality, very smooth and very drinkable. I thought this one was worth the hype and hope to get a few more bottles as soon as possible.

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.03/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle received from brdc (thanks Daniel). I had this side-by-side with several other big and rare stouts (Darkness, Dark Lord, and Sexual Chocolate). Through this I was able to make comparisons which normally elude me. It turned out that Kate the Great was pretty unique in this contest. It had the most evident alcohol aroma and flavor, very reminiscent of sake, kind of a sake-RIS.

The beer is dark black with a nice initial 1-2 finger foam. As mentioned earler the smell was sake-like, but included roasted malts (more sweet than burnt). The taste was good but not great, lots of sake up front, then some malty sweetness as it fills the mouth, followed by a lingering sake or alcohol flavor. I'm not sure why alcohol is so evident in this beer versus its competitors, but it makes this more or less one of a kind. The body is standard for the style, thick enough but nowhere as thick as Dark Lord (or Darkness for that matter). Drinkability is very good, I was surprised to find myself wishing for more of this after the beers were gone (although Darkness was the hands-down winner in everyone's book).

Portsmouth Kate The Great from Portsmouth Brewery
100 out of 100 based on 903 ratings.