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Highland Thunderstruck Coffee Porter - Highland Brewing

Highland Thunderstruck Coffee PorterHighland Thunderstruck Coffee Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

357 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 357
Reviews: 97
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 11.22%


Brewed by:
Highland Brewing visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: hippityhophead24 on 11-10-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 357 | Reviews: 97 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

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.

Serving type: on-tap

11-27-2011 06:09:19 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of womencantsail
womencantsail

California

3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for sharing, Rich.

Pours dark brown in color with a tan head. Definitely a lot of coffee on the aroma. Also a fair amount of sugar with a soft spice quality. A bit of dark chocolate and some roasted malts as well. The coffee comes through on the palate, as does the coffee and roasted malt. There seems to be a hint of vanilla sweetness on the back end of the flavor and there is just a little bit of bitterness, too.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2012 02:21:48 | More by womencantsail
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

4.11/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Simply put, you don't get robust-er without going "stout", this dark ale borrows toasted elements from a lot of different angles to reinforce its toast character and without going all roast. Its a very bold beer that's certainly got me thunderstruck.

Opening with the darkest of brown but not black, the ale quickly separates from its froathly whipped top. Seemingly opaque from darkness alone, its mocha-stained head is like meringue as it builds its creamy density, shows long staying power, and laces the glass with well-defined collaring.

Bold french roast-type coffee is roasty, nutty and rich with scorched earth- its coffee aroma is joined by dark chocolate, seared toffee and charred toast to follow. Roasted walnuts, campfire char and woodish hops weave into a scent that's sharp and toasty-acidic heading into taste.

Silky malted milk joins with the char for a boisterous but gentle taste. Its coffee taste is light and smooth even with its earthy and light espresso taste. But the beer's backbone of caramel, toffee, burnt toast and natural coffee flavor perfectly supports the coffee aditions with its own darkness and mysterious tendencies. As the beer finishes, its dry malt taste is cut short with woody hop notes that are easily mistaken for coffee bitterness and charred bite.

Just as silky in texture as it is in taste, the sweetness wraps around the tongue with gentle seduction. As the char wants to pang away at the soft tissues of the mouth, its acrid sharpness is buffered to perfection, even as the sweetness and carbonation trails off. In finish, is almost as if the malts gently lay the taste buds down to rest for the night. However, its caffeinated kick and its alcohol spice says, "the party's on!"

Though its quality is high and its taste is masculine- the beer has a humble understated demeanor likely because its a porter and not a stout. This really allows the finesse of the coffee to stand out beautifully.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2013 17:48:25 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of ChainGangGuy
ChainGangGuy

Georgia

3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle - $1.69 at Charlie's Beer and Wine in Marietta, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours what appears to be an essentially black body with a full, thick finger of medium-tan-hued foam.

Smell: Roasty, coffee-accented nose with a touch of bitter chocolate and increasingly fainter, lighter notes of caramel, pale malts, spicy hops, and fruit.

Taste: Roasty coffee and bitterish chocolate mingled with the base pale malts. Some thin traces of caramel, maybe even a fat drop of molasses in there as well. Very low fruitiness. Modestly spicy hops aided a bit by the roast, the carbonation, and wheat. Roasty finish with some of that dark chocolate lingering into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation, though there's an added skosh of crispness on the tail end of the swallow.

Overall: A solid, enjoyable coffee-infused porter.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2012 14:46:54 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Mellow in Greensboro,or at least it was,it blew after my pour.Poured into a standard pint glass a deep dark brown cola color with rich creamy-like off white head atop.A heavy dose of French roast coffee in the nose with underlying bitter chocolate and molasses sweetness as well.A little heavy handed in the coffee department for my taste on the palate but its still a nice porter,mild molasses sweetness and a hint of vanilla underneath the coffee roast and earth.Again it's a great porter but for me just a tad to much coffee flavor.

Serving type: on-tap

12-24-2011 13:48:20 | More by oberon
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a VERY dark clear ruby/near brown, with 2 fingers of rich light mocha head. This retains with a ½ finger or so of froth which leaves back a foamy cascade of sticky lacing. The aroma has a ripe smoky twang to it from a mix of cocoa, toffee, green citrus and coffee. The hops in particular give a nice fresh leafy pop in the nose.

The coffee flavor is there in the taste but isn’t overpowering, as sweet notes of chocolate and caramel kicks in next, which in turn give way to bitter green citrus along the rear. Roast and hops finish this dry and bitter with some lingering acrid smokiness on the tail end. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a mellow creamy prickle to the carbonation. This movies rather nicely, with just enough crispness to it from those hops.

This was a pretty decent take on a Coffee Porter, with a good balance and flow to the flavors and an easy enough body to keep this on the drinkable side on things. I’d like to see them put this in 12 oz bottles at some point.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2012 17:09:04 | More by Kegatron
Photo of Georgiabeer
Georgiabeer

Georgia

3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A quite nice porter with noticeable, but not too heavy coffee accent. Pleasant overall. Pours fairly inky black, but with a quite light viscosity. Only a short head, and that does fade somewhat quickly, but still, a fairly pretty beer. Very nice, and noticeable, black coffee aroma. Nutty, somewhat roasty, and with a slight molasses note. Dryer on the palate, with nicely balanced roastiness, coffee notes, and a light maltiness and lightly bitter finish. A little slick in the mouth, but overall quite nice.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2013 23:05:50 | More by Georgiabeer
Photo of dbrauneis
dbrauneis

North Carolina

4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear but opaque very dark brown bordering on jet black with some light amounts of gentle carbonation along the edges of the glass and some dark cola brown + garnet red highlights. The beer has a half finger tall sudsy foamy tan head that reduces to a few small to medium sized patches of thick film surrounded by a thin film covering the remainder of the surface of the beer and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of freshly ground espresso/french roast coffee with some lighter aromas of roasted malts and chocolate.

T: Upfront there is a light to moderate flavor of roasted malts with a touch of molasses sweetness and a hint of vanilla. That is followed by moderate to strong flavors of espresso/french roast coffee and some light flavors of bittersweet chocolate. Overall there is a light amount of bitterness that lingers for a short amount of time.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: As an avid coffee drinker, this beer really spoke to me...wonderful coffee aromas and flavors dominate this beer. I would definitely recommend this one and will likely grab a couple more of these while it is available (since it is a seasonal).

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2013 02:13:17 | More by dbrauneis
Photo of kylehay2004
kylehay2004

Florida

3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Half finger tab head on a dark black body with some light passing through. Little lacing. Aroma is a little light coffee and chocolate notes. Not much else. Sweet and mildly smokey porter flavor with a light coffee note throughtout. They didn't go crazy with the coffee on this one. Lighter body than I was expecting with moderate to high carbonation. Overall a standard coffee porter, very drinkable but not super memorable.

Serving type: on-tap

02-14-2012 00:22:16 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of Cyberkedi
Cyberkedi

Georgia

4.75/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Strong aroma is mainly quality roast coffee and sweet chocolate, like a mocha from a good coffeehouse. It pours a nearly-black opaque sable with a thick, fine-bubbled, almost Guinness-like tan head that stays around for a bit. Superb flavor is more like coffee than porter - quality coffee, like something from Starbucks or Caribou Coffee, not cheap instant. It also has a subtle malty undertone and a hint of licorice. Sweetness and bitterness balance each other nicely. Texture has plenty of fizz and above-average body. Maybe it won’t leave you thunderstruck, but it’s an outstanding brew.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2012 00:43:21 | More by Cyberkedi
Photo of avalon07
avalon07

South Carolina

4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a black color and a thick, muddy consistency. There was a small amount of foamy head that quickly dissipated. Good lacing.

S: A very strong coffee smell, with some chocolate thrown in as well.

T: Tasted of coffee, predominantly, with some chocolate, malt and a little hops. While the coffee does dominate the flavor, it's still very tasty.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a slick finish. Medium-bodied.

O: A wholly enjoyable, drinkable beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2012 14:33:36 | More by avalon07
Photo of GarthDanielson
GarthDanielson

North Carolina

3.86/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a mug, the beer is a very dark, brown-to-black coloring with a wispy, filmy, light tan surface head. Aromas of rich, dark roasted coffee, with a hint of nut sweetness. Simple nose, but very inviting. Flavors are heavily bitter and roast forward, with a blast of coffee, dark and rich like coffee grounds. Very bitter towards the back end of the palate, with subtle hints of chocolate becoming present into the aftertaste. Dry, mid-bodied, with a bitter roast linger into the smooth finish, slightly dry finish. Solid beer with heavy, robust flavors, but remaining very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2013 23:59:13 | More by GarthDanielson
Photo of DrDemento456
DrDemento456

Pennsylvania

4.06/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Snagged a couple of bottles from my 10 dollar mix a six section at the local House of 1,000 beers.

A - For under 6% it pours quite thick, very viscous dark black color with mild ruby hues at the base. Head is thick well over an inch of mocha goodness that seems to stick around forever.
S - Roasted coffee notes, ashy chocolate, and some vanilla malt base. Pretty in your face coffee.
T - Taste is good for the ABV its sweet chocolate water taste meets a filters coffee blast and finishes off with some vanilla malt sweetness. Not very lactic or acidic and it goes down smooth.
M - Light to medium kind of watery but its to be expected for the ABV.

Overall its a actually a well crafted low ABV coffee porter. Not as big or chewy as I expected but I can easily down the two I got. Worth a try!

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2014 03:36:42 | More by DrDemento456
Photo of blackie
blackie

Virginia

4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

have had this in a couple formats since release, rating a single bottle picked up at bruisin'

a: served from 12 ounce bottle into a wide snifter, this anticipated coffee porter produces a brief flash of mocha head that falls back to a thin ring, the beer itself a deep brown-to-black in color

s: awesome medium roast coffee nose - smooth barley roasts and roasted wheat mingle in, combining to produce dark fruit and chocolate aromas, mild hop aroma with some slight grassiness, some other presence here - vanilla, toffee, cocoa - but it all comes back around to that lovely, pure coffee aroma - not at the top, but up there with the best coffee aromas I’ve found - rich with a clean, cold-steeped character

m: carbonation on the lower side of the moderate range, body a fuller medium, smooth

t: fresh, rich medium-roast coffee flavors underscored by notes of toffee and semisweet chocolate, not too heavy and in keeping with the porter style, some sugars on the front and middle with a delicate, cleanly flavored hop bitter lingering with strong coffee

o: really like the combination of porter and coffee - provides the nice roasted barley and sugars that you’d find in a stout, while allowing more of the bean to shine through, and the coffee character, of course - it’s fantastic, nice use of Midnight wheat as well (a new variety to me) - helping to keep things clean and balanced while contributing its own roasted character, easy drinking and very enjoyable

beans roasted by Dynamite Roasters in Black Mountain - they produce some quality beans and have a really nice shop in town

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2013 02:12:01 | More by blackie
Photo of Alieniloquium
Alieniloquium

Florida

3.1/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Black body with a moderate cream head. Transparent at the edges. Thick collar of foam around the surface.

Smell - Strong coffee aroma. Some chocolate comes through from the beer, but it's mostly coffee.

Taste - Really strong coffee flavor. The beer is mostly lost back there, but some bitter chocolate comes through as well as some hop bite. The combination of coffee, chocolate, and hop bitterness becomes abrasive in the finish.

Mouthfeel - High carbonation, thin body, bitter finish. None too pleasing to consume, although it could be worse, I guess.

Overall - Some sips are decent, others are harsh. Coffee just seems to overwhelm everything in this.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2013 03:27:02 | More by Alieniloquium
Photo of chinchill
chinchill

South Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle served in a Highland pint glass.

Pours with almost no head, although a thin ring and some lacing are still there some minutes later. Opaque, dark brown; more clear than cloudy.

Aroma of coffee, dark malts and noble hops, in that order of strength. Taste largely follows, although the roasted malts are much more evident in the flavor. While the aroma suggest espresso, the flavor is medium roast coffee; a load of coffee flavor nonetheless. Excellent level of mild bitterness; nice use of hops to provide a shade of spicy flavoring in this malty/coffee mix. There's a subtle hint of dark fruit here too. Fine finish and lingering aftertaste.

M: a bit under-carbonated; medium body; slightly dry finish.

O: a fine, dark coffee beer with a bit more coffee than malt flavor and aroma.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2012 20:49:15 | More by chinchill
Photo of AgentZero
AgentZero

Illinois

4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark brown beer, looks black in the low light. Two fingers of brown head rose up and left a decent bit of stick and bubbles on the glass.

S - Rich chocolate that's slightly unsweetened, bit of vanilla, good coffee. Malts are slightly roasted with some bitterness that comes through from the coffee.

T - Good bitter coffee, complimentary chocolate, bit of roast. This is a pretty solid tasting porter that has some good cocoa and coffee taste. Surprisingly good stuff with no offensive flavors at all.

M - Medium bodied beer with medium carbonation.

O - Good beer, drank three of these with no problems. Has a nice flavor profile and is also easily available.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2011 06:20:13 | More by AgentZero
Photo of tdm168
tdm168

North Carolina

3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark black with a quarter of an inch of cappuccino colored head that is dense, foamy, and has fantastic retention. The nose is subtle with mild notes of coffee, chocolate, and some citrus primarily lemon zest. The flavor is intriguing because it has notes that most porters wouldn't. I get notes of coffee and chocolate which were expected but also some fruit, citrus, and mild floral hop finish. The finish leaves a fruity aftertaste reminiscent of a Now And Later candy. There is also some wheaty notes throughout that seem to soften the body and mellow the flavor. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, a little dry, and well carbonated. The dryness detracts a little from the body.

This is a refreshing beer. It has some fruity qualities that seem to set it apart from the rest of the crown. I enjoyed and wouldn't mind having it again.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2012 20:16:16 | More by tdm168
Photo of DavoleBomb
DavoleBomb

Ohio

3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. Big thanks to SteveFinny for this.

4.0 A: Black color. Two fingers of light brown, creamy/frothy head. Retention is good overall and very good given the coffee involved. A short ring of lacing is left.

3.5 S: Smell of coffee dominates, though I will admit that it's reminiscent of stale coffee. Plenty of roast, moderate sweetness, and hints of molasses. Still, decent.

3.5 T: Coffee rules the taste as well. Solid malty base. Chocolate shows up for the first time along with the molasses. Good.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Reasonably creamy and smooth.

3.5 D: Solid throughout.

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2012 18:35:01 | More by DavoleBomb
Photo of oline73
oline73

Maryland

3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: The beer pours an almost opaque dark brown with some red at the edges where the light hits. There is a layer of off white head with a ring around the edge of the pour.

Smell: This one smells like a nut brown with some coffee undertones. There is a slightly sweet nutty malt note here. The coffee isn't particularly strong.

Taste: The coffee is more prevalent here than it was in the smell. I'm getting roasted malt along with dark fruit and dark chocolate. The finish is roasty and slightly bitter.

Mouthfeel: Medium beer with large bubbles and a dry finish.

Overall: This is a solid enough coffee beer. Nothing too special, but not bad either.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2012 03:01:24 | More by oline73
Photo of cosmicevan
cosmicevan

New York

3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

picked this up in NC the other day.

a - opened and filled my duck rabbit snifter. poured a deep rich black with a milky mocha creamy head. lacing was kind of sticky and head hung out for a bit.

s - robust milk chocolate and coffee. frappacino anyone? very stouty. very much like something you'd be served in a coffee shop.

t - flavor is a bit interesting. at first very muddled, but as i got adjusted to the gourmet coffee flavoring i noticed some of the charred porter flavors that i love. seems like a bit of an odd combination still.

m - mouth is a bit thicker than your average porter, but nowhere near a stout.

o - overall the coffee is an interesting addition. i find myself wishing it was a stout and not a porter that they blended the coffee with. the coffee flavoring is nice, but not a perfect match for this porter. it is non-offensive though and an easy drinker.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2011 03:32:13 | More by cosmicevan
Photo of mdaschaf
mdaschaf

Washington

3.4/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Jason for this one. Review from notes.

A: Pours a dark black color with a one finger tan/brown colored head on top. Not much retention, reducing to a cap of foam on top, minimal lacing.

S: Lots of coffee, some roasted malt, a little bit of chocolate too.

T: There is some coffee flavor in the beginning, but it falls off quickly, leaving a dark, roasted malt flavor with nothing much else going on.

M: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

O: Surprised at how quickly the coffee was gone in the flavor profile. Decent, but not a beer I would see out again.

Serving type: bottle

02-15-2012 16:55:04 | More by mdaschaf
Photo of BeerKangaroo
BeerKangaroo

Alaska

3.99/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanx Sarah;

On the bottle it says "Filled 10/2/13"

Into a pint glass:

A: dark brown colored body with a half finger white foamy head that dies within less than a minute, lacing is somewhat sticky and clinging to the sides of the glass - looks like it tries to form some rings, but slides for the most part

S: espresso coffee strong up front with some roasted malty notes and light chocolate in the background creating a nice smooth aroma

T: coffee sweet (probably what I'm trying to say is its got a fairly fresh sort roasted and somewhat vanilla coffee blessing to the flavoring) I'm really diggin' this, slight coffee aftertaste and a dry coffee finish

M: medium, somewhat sessionable as any coffee porter can be, carbonation is good for the style and for me, nothing obscure and yet there's a decent smooth presence all around

O: this is a very well done coffee porter that I would definitely welcome again, Highland is quite the gem of a beer company down there in NC.

Serving type: bottle

12-11-2013 22:33:55 | More by BeerKangaroo
Photo of wedge
wedge

North Carolina

3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown under a slim, bubbly tan head. Bold coffee upfront in the aroma along with some dark, bitter chocolate roast. Roasted, mildly sweet coffee flavor. Pretty straightforward, which isn't a bad thing. Baker's chocolate, nuts, maybe a little molasses. Smooth and medium bodied with a touch of wateriness. Dry in the finish. This certainly delivers in the coffee department.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2012 23:07:42 | More by wedge
Photo of DIM
DIM

Pennsylvania

3.2/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

No date on the bottle so I can't say if this was an older sample. The coffee flavor was weak and slightly sour with some hints of cocoa. There was a fairly long, lingering bitterness. The mouthfeel was slick and fizzy. This wasn't offensive or anything, just kind of bland.

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2012 20:15:23 | More by DIM
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Highland Thunderstruck Coffee Porter from Highland Brewing
88 out of 100 based on 357 ratings.