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Chief BlackHawk Porter - Tyranena Brewing Company

Chief BlackHawk PorterChief BlackHawk Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

262 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 262
Reviews: 158
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 9.9%

Brewed by:
Tyranena Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-15-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 262 | Reviews: 158 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Hammer35


3.74/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Pitch black color with tan head and small beading. Decent head retention, but beautiful lacing.

Smell: Big, bold notes of coffee with subtle hints of cinnamon. I wish there was more than a hint of cinnamon.

Taste: Coffee. Black, roasted coffee. The cinnamon (and any other flavor) disappears against the huge coffee flavor. Bitter, dry finish.

Mouthfeel: Not thin, but lighter than I expected. Heavily carbonated.

Overall: Not a bad porter, but it seemed to me to be nothing but bitter, dark coffee flavors. I would have appreciated more depth of flavor. The mouthfeel was also a bit of a throw-off, being lighter and much more carbonated than expected.

Serving type: on-tap

12-11-2013 20:56:00 | More by Hammer35
Photo of jrallen34


2.73/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

On tap at the brew pub into a pint glass...A dark brown pour with a light tan head that rises about two fingers but falls way to quickly, at least the lacing is good...Light roasted aroma but just not a ton going on, bored...The taste is much stronger but that's not a good thing, tons of alcohol on the front, bitter from the alcohol not roasty bitter. There needs to be some sweetness to cut this.

An average porter at best.

Serving type: on-tap

10-28-2010 15:05:34 | More by jrallen34
Photo of BeerBelcher


3.05/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this on-site at the Tyranena brewery, and was not terribly impressed with it. It seemed not quite "charred" or "burned pizza crust" for me, and had a watery mouthfeel.

The beer was served in a UK-pint glass, and did not appear to be tremendously thick nor block-out-the-sun opaque. It had a small amount of white head.

Aroma was very faint for a porter, and was of toasted malt.

Flavor was not as chocolatey or coffee-ish as most other porters I've had recently. Instead, it was a fairly weak-tasting caramel malt character.

Mouthfeel seemed a bit watery for this style.

I wouldn't recommend against it, but I don't feel this is one of the better porters I've had lately.

Serving type: on-tap

01-28-2007 23:27:01 | More by BeerBelcher
Photo of DaPeculierDane


4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured at the brewery. Nearly black opaque mahogany. Thin tan head. Moderate to aggressive carbonation. Lightish bodied. Nice bitter earthy hops in the aroma, coffee and cocoa too. Pleasant twanginess in the mouthfeel. Well balanced between sweet caramel coffee and bitter grape like earthy hops. Despite being a bit too thin it does manage to come off almost creamy. Drinkabilty to be measured in growlers not pint glasses. Considerably better on tap than in the bottle.

Serving type: on-tap

04-24-2006 18:34:26 | More by DaPeculierDane
Photo of cokes


4.45/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Tyranena makes some damn fine beers and BlackHawk certainly fits this description.

Pours a jaw-dropping, mouth-watering glass of black liquid with just a few edges of mahogany. A dense creamy head cascades up from the abyss and sticks most of the way down.

Some subtle roastedness with a "hard-water" smell (for lack of a better term) that manifests itself in most of their beers. Liquorice backing.

Taste is hearty and satisfying. Robust with some roasted malts coming to the forefront. Strong bitter chocolate establishes firmly. Cocoa-coated grapes. Some hints of expresso and caramel as well. The hopping is light, but mingles nicely towards the finish to tie this up wonderfully.

Light bodied but creamy. Smooth and sensuous on the palate. Just a delight to drink as it coats the mouth with its flavors.

One is never enough for me. I love this stuff.
(note: considerably better on tap...some of my bottles have been rather thin and soapy)

Serving type: on-tap

04-15-2002 00:00:32 | More by cokes
Photo of KFBR392


3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Poured vigorously to produce a dense head of a finger and a half. Sits black in the glass with above average active carbonation for the style. Some random lacing left behind with each drink.

Smell: Sweet lactose and oats greet the drinker. Dark roasted coffee grounds are very clean and deliver a concise aroma. Vanilla and molasses picked up on the back end. Great balance of sweet tones with solid roasted malt body.

Taste: subtle oats and creamy malt hits on the front. After that, the beer sort of just lulls its way into the body with no significant taste additions. Some very light roasted malt and dry almost burnt coffee grounds are picked up on the back end. The finish is lingering bitter chocolate and dry coffee.

Mouthfeel: Full range run here with this brew. The front is sweet, creamy, and airy while the finish is filled with roasted malt and coffee leaving a very dry palate behind.

Overall: Loved the aroma but was let down with the taste. The front is enticing but nothing notable happens until the finish. I porter I would recommend trying but nothing to seek out.

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2014 01:38:18 | More by KFBR392
Photo of buschbeer


3.78/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 fl. Ounce bottle
Served in a perfect pint glass

A - This beer is dark brown. Just the fainest of light gets through this thing. The mocha head was generous.

S - I smell some roasted malt and dark chocolate.

T - The taste is sweeter than I expected. I get some milk chocolate. The finish has some dark and unsweetened chocolate.

M - Medium

O - This is a chocolaty porter. It is easy enough to drink. I could see drinking this often if it was distributed in Ohio.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2014 03:19:32 | More by buschbeer
Photo of jwc215


3.79/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours very dark brown with a tan head that soon becomes patchy. Thin lacing sticks.

The smell is of roasted coffee, chocolate, chicory. Pretty robust!

The taste is of deep roasted coffee, charcoal, chicory, hint of anise and some chocolate. Roasted finish.

Medium body with lingering roast and touch of alcohol.

Overall, it's a nice, roasty, fairly robust, porter!

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2014 05:59:42 | More by jwc215
Photo of jayhass


3.79/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Color is almost dark black with a little amber light coming through the edge. Tan head is thick but fades to a spotted lace.
Smell- Roasted character stands out with light bitter chocolate and charcoal. Some light grain and bread from the malt.
Taste- Light sweet bitter chocolate with roasted malt giving a good coffee note. Light ash charcoal and tobacco. Some bitterness from hops but roasted malt dominates.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2013 02:03:25 | More by jayhass
Photo of RickS95


4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Very dark black pour with some lighter red hues around the edges. Even though it's very dark, it's got a clearishness to it, despite being completely opaque. The head is just over a finger thick, full of camel-colored bubbles. Very foamy looking head. Gives the premonition it's going to be creamy. Decent retention and a thin lace.

Very malty, particularly chocolate and caramel malts. Chocolate is always there, but the caramel comes wafting up from the glass as the beer warms. Little hop presence in the nose.

A bit of chocolate in the taste and the caramel malts are noticeable. While I've never had cold coffee, this taste is what I imagine it tastes like. Very caramelly, like a soda.

The mouthfeel lacks the creamy smoothness I expected from the look and smell. It starts off sweet before bitterness starts to take over, but it's never too bitter, just enough to balance the malt bomb. Slight watery feel with a fairly carbonated, cleansing finish.

Another good beer from Tyranena. Not sure I've had a bad one yet and this is a good one. ABV is shown as 5.75% on their website, so it's almost a session beer. Feel free and don't worry about needing to sip, just go at it.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2013 03:08:17 | More by RickS95
Photo of mfnmbvp


3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, no bottled on date present. Acquired as part of Tyranena's The Legendary Collection mixed twelve pack. Twelve pack says Packaged 04/02/2013.

Poured into a Firestone Walker pint glass.

A - Gentle pour yields half a finger of khaki colored froth on top of a mostly opaque black body. Some ruby hues shining through when held to the light, and some carbonation bubbles visible rising to the top. No lacing.

S - Big bitter coffee bean roast. Smells smooth, creamy, & inviting.

T - Taste follows the nose. Bitter dark roasted coffee bean flavor, toasted malts, and some underlying hoppiness.

M - Light to medium bodied, smooth, creamy, slight carbonation, and some lingering hop / coffee bean roast.

Overall, an effectively well-made porter. Porters aren't typically my favorite style, but I do like finding one I enjoy. Reminded me a bit of Founders Porter, which I also remember enjoying. Smooth, creamy, delicious. Another beer from Tyranena that I would be happy to revisit.

Tyranena Chief BlackHawk Porter ---4/5.

Serving type: bottle

05-13-2013 23:11:55 | More by mfnmbvp
Photo of rlee1390


3.71/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Black in the glass, clear amber when pouring, one finger off white head.

S-Good deal of chocolate, roasted malt and some burnt notes.

T-Chocolate and roasted malt, some burnt notes, however the balance is off. Some candied sugar.

M-Light, tad watery with some carbonation.

O-Too watery and the poor balance really hurt this beer. Was expecting more.

Serving type: bottle

04-11-2013 21:51:16 | More by rlee1390
Photo of Fuzzycuffs


2.5/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Got a bottle as a gift with a sampler of a bunch of other beers.

A: Pours the colour you would expect a porter to be. Very, very, very dark brown. Less than a finger of head on this one, no lacing.

S: Citrusy hops. Weak malty bouquet, hints of burnt caramel, little else to say.

T: A bit of burnt malt, not much else. Watery, lacks malt. I feel like I know exactly what the brewers were thinking when they put this porter together. They likely decided that if they added too much malt, the burnt taste would be overpowering. Amateur mistake, with a porter, your malt options are so diverse, but it tastes like the wort was a weak burnt malt tea.

M: Smooth, but seriously lacking in body. With this style, I would prefer a full-bodied feel. The carbonation is there, but unremarkable. Low carbonation is probably not something that I should fault a porter for, but I found myself seeking distraction from the boring flavour of this brew.

O: The smell of this brew promised much more. Not well balanced. Not malty, which is all I need say to damn a porter. I like trying new brews, but I can't say that I would ever go out and buy this. Maybe if I'm looking for an example of how not to make beer. Boring, but unoffensive.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2012 02:01:08 | More by Fuzzycuffs
Photo of WastingFreetime


3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from session notes.

Poured out the expected dark brown color with a nice two finger khaki head that lasts for several minutes, medium levels of lacing are left behind on the glass. The aroma contains a mild amount of chocolate and roasted malt notes, but the flavor contains all of these thing -plus- a nice medium dose of coffee with a hint of plums wandering around in the background, and the texture of the brew is silky smooth. Now this is definitely more like it!

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2012 02:29:29 | More by WastingFreetime
Photo of MaximalC


3.45/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours ebony in color with faint brown highlights if you look for them. Vigorous pour yields a bubbly tan head that recedes after a short while. Aroma is of darkly roasted malt--almost acrid and coffee-like. Flavor is bolder than I expected, like black coffee but not as obnoxiously bitter. The carbonation helps temper the astringently roasted malt flavor. A bit more hop presence than I'm used to in a porter, but not bad. My lamentation here is there isn't much complexity behind the bold, yet one-dimensional, flavor. What's there is not objectionable, but it wears thin without greater depth. Overal, this is a decent porter that offers a more palatable coffee-flavored malt than most, but it lacks the nuance a complexity to really engage me.

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2012 01:35:10 | More by MaximalC
Photo of znichols


3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dark, dark ruby, almost black. Tan head that leaves rather quick. Average lacing. Looks like a lighter bodied porter.

S- Smell is full of roasted barley, caramel, vanilla, wood, earth, soil, all mingle well together. Really begs for a sip.

T- Taste follows aroma with slight herbal hops, burnt wood, earthy essence, dark baker's chocolate. Nice roastyness that doesn't overpower. Decent amount of bitterness from the roasted malts, not so much the hops. No alcohol present. A good tasting porter.

M- Very nice mouthfeel. Creamy yet fairly light bodied so two or three wont fill you up. Good amount of carbonation for the style, not ideal.

O- This is a really, really good everyday porter. Not something i'd reach for if i'm feeling sophisticated, but after a long day or by the bonfire, the lighter body and nice roastyness make this a good beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2012 00:18:48 | More by znichols
Photo of tobelerone


3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A rich black colored brew with a small off-white head that settles slowly and some patchy lace. Aroma is typical porter stuff, but fairly assertive; roasted malt, bitter black coffee, a bit of char and a hint of chocolate.

Pretty tasty. Lots of roast, chewy malt, again, bitter coffee and chocolate. Fairly hoppy for the style, somewhat herbal and spicy, with lingering bitterness in the finish. Modest sweetness, very dry.

Medium-thin bodied, medium-high carbonation. A bit prickly and fizzy. I enjoy a somewhat smoother, creamier porter but this isn’t bad. Flavors and aroma are strong, falls on the bitter side of the style, still highly drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2012 15:01:50 | More by tobelerone
Photo of jlindros


3.78/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to erric for this one.

Screw top really?

Pours a nice fluffy fizzy 1 finger head that fades at a med pace with a bit of lacing, over dark midnight black beer with no light coming through.

Nose adds creamy porter, light sweet malts, toasty malts, caramel, hint chocolate, aromatic malty aroma, hint of biscuit, and some lactose sugar.

Taste starts slight sweet malts but mostly dry, trial typical porter flavors but light feeling. Hint of bakers chocolate, caramel, biscuit and toasty malts, wants to get syrupy but doesn't quite. Then hops, a light earthy and spicy hop come through with a decent bitterness. A very light yeast flavor. In the background I get a hint if roasted malts and light acrid burnt flavor subsequently. Finish is dry still, a slight metallic mineral adrift burnt flavor lingering, more chocolate and roast, light syrupy malt. A hint more cocoa late.

Mouth is med to slightly richer bodied, good carb.

Overall not bad, interesting porter, somewhat drinkable, a slight burnt acrid flavor, nice malts, hops come through nicely,

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2012 01:14:22 | More by jlindros
Photo of samie85


3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an opaque, inky black color with a finger of light brown head.

Smells of deep cocoa with some dark chocolate with light hints of earthy hops.

Roasted and dark chocolate notes with a slight vanilla note and some bitter, dark chocolate on the finish.

Light yet rich with moderate carbonation and a slick feel.

Pretty nice example of a porter; I could see myself buying this one again.

Serving type: bottle

02-25-2012 21:33:18 | More by samie85
Photo of tykees88


3.33/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Amazing pour. Two fingers of gray khaki colored rocky foamy head. Stays about one finger the whole glass. Lacing licking all sides from each drink. Beautiful.

S-Smell is a bit of a letdown. I don't get in touch with many of the coffee and chocolate aromas as I am used to in a porter. I am instead greeted by a much more dull aroma in a mild form. A hint of coffee gives way to a spicy peppery aroma.

T- Also not great. It's just really mild tasting. The chocolate, the coffee and roasted malt character is there, but nothing stands out. They all are very mild tasting. The hop flavor is almost nonexistent to me too.

M- It's lighter bodied for a porter.

O-It's alright. Maybe I had an off day or an off batch. I love porters so I'll come back to this

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2012 14:00:07 | More by tykees88
Photo of codsmith


4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours black with a nice finger tall mocha cream head that laces the glass nicely.

S: Heavy malt aroma mixed with a nice mellow nut, coffee and roasted malt character.

T: Very malty character with a low touch of roasted grain character towards the end. Finishes with a nice bittersweet chocolate and hop touch.

M: medium-to-full body. Sits fairly heavy and very creamy and smooth. Goes down very easily. Carbonation is right on.

O: A very malty beer and sits rather heavy. Not sure if I would choose to drink more than 2 in a session because they are rather filling, but still has a good beer.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2011 23:34:24 | More by codsmith
Photo of dlello2


4.22/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Nice medium-bodied dark brown (almost black) pour into a snifter. Finger of head leaves a soap bubble ring around the edges of the glass after 20 seconds.

S - Subtle smoky chocolate and espresso. Touch of sweetness/molasses.

T - Really smooth. Nice chocolaty finish is (oddly) the first thing that I notice. Maybe a touch of dark chocolate/espresso-bean bitterness in the middle of the tongue. Really well balanced!

M - Nice carbonation, and again, a nice smooth finish. Nice coating of the mouth and some dark fruit stickiness on my teeth.

O - While not overwhelmingly intricate, all of the pieces to this porter seem to fit really well! Definitely happy to have tried it (thanks Binny's new mix-a-six!)

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2011 23:34:05 | More by dlello2
Photo of chicagoabbot


4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a fine porter...12 oz bottle into a tulip and it bubbles up reddish and black. Classic porter nose, slightly sour with some malt backbone sweetness. Smooth on the tongue. A little sweetness. Nice bite. Well balanced. Mouthfeel is excellent. Recommended. Price is reasonable too.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2011 01:36:24 | More by chicagoabbot
Photo of tvv375ia


3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from 12oz bottle into pint glass

A-poured a very dark brown almost black with no light showing through

S-lots of coffee to start with followed by some cocoa and maybe a little smoke

T-much like the smell coffee and chocolate with some smoky finish

M-good carbonation and a little creaminess

O-This is a really good beer from Tyranena I might have to make another trip to Wisconsin to pick up some more of this beer,

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2011 22:38:12 | More by tvv375ia
Photo of GallowsThief


3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received in trade from the man himself ChugginOil. Thanks man! Poured out of a 12 oz bottle into my tulip.

A – Deep dark root beer brown pour with tan one finger of head.

S – Dark chocolate, mocha, vanilla and slightly sweet.

T - Bittersweet chocolate and coffee bitterness start it off. Vanilla comes along after leading it to a bit of a sweet taste. Has a nice roasty malt that finishes the flavor off. Touch of molasses.

M – Medium bodied with decent carbonation. Leaves a bit of a smoky sweet taste on your palate.

O – Pretty solid porter here. Has nice flavors and they balance well. Easy drinker and tasty.

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2011 23:28:43 | More by GallowsThief
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Chief BlackHawk Porter from Tyranena Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 262 ratings.