1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Red Brick Brick Mason Series #4: Smoked Vanilla Gorilla - Red Brick Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Red Brick Brick Mason Series #4: Smoked Vanilla GorillaRed Brick Brick Mason Series #4: Smoked Vanilla Gorilla

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

190 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 190
Reviews: 81
rAvg: 3.51
pDev: 24.79%
Wants: 16
Gots: 20 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Red Brick Brewing Company visit their website
Georgia, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  7.80% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: AdamBear on 09-21-2011)
View: Beers (27) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 190 | Reviews: 81 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of dcs1548
dcs1548

North Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black in color, little to no foam and a smokey vanilla smell. Very present, but not over bearing, smokey taste, with a nice balance of vanilla after taste. It's an excellent beer that's full of complex flavor. I was surprised when I saw the rating on here, oh well, I guess we all have different tastes.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2012 18:45:51 | More by dcs1548
Photo of DioS
DioS

Georgia

3.5/5  rDev -0.3%

08-28-2012 19:16:56 | More by DioS
Photo of retreminy
retreminy

South Carolina

1.75/5  rDev -50.1%

07-21-2012 03:29:18 | More by retreminy
Photo of wo87810
wo87810

Florida

3.75/5  rDev +6.8%

07-03-2012 18:24:32 | More by wo87810
Photo of Beejay
Beejay

Virginia

1.6/5  rDev -54.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

A: Pours dark brown, in the glass it is black but when held to a bright light it turns deep crimson. The head is chocolate milk in color, and fluffy.

S: There is a hint of sour mash in there, as well as a floury bread aroma. Not picking up a lot of dark malt character, although the vanilla is coming through.

T: Tart and sour. No smoked character, some bready flavors, with some vanilla aftertaste. No whisky. Not really any Porter flavor.

M: Fairly thin on body. Carbonation feels a little lack luster. There is a lingering tartness that continues to pucker for a bit.

O: While this certainly isn't the worst beer I have had, it may very well be the worst beer that I would have imagined to be great. I should love everything about a smoked, whisky barrel, vanilla porter. However I am greeted by a thin, lack luster, sour mess of a beer that's only resemblance to a porter is the color; which is a shame because considering some of the other reviews, I think I really would have liked it.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2012 02:44:12 | More by Beejay
Photo of ucsbmullet
ucsbmullet

Colorado

3.25/5  rDev -7.4%

06-16-2012 02:28:16 | More by ucsbmullet
Photo of AutomaticBastard
AutomaticBastard

California

1.33/5  rDev -62.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

A- Looks like a porter. Dark brown/black, has a small mocha head that goes away rather quickly.

S- Not much smoke, if any. Hint of vanilla, with some spiciness.

T- Sour. Infected

M- Didn't get past the sour aspect of the taste to really analyze it much, but it was medium bodied I'd say.

O- Not much to it, it was sour. Not how I like my porters.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2012 21:32:38 | More by AutomaticBastard
Photo of maximum12
maximum12

Minnesota

1/5  rDev -71.5%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Thanks to, well, you know who you are, for throwing this into an excellent springtime trade. 12 oz. bottle poured after the kids are down & the wife is out. I should really be sleeping.

Pour is dark & fizzy with red highlights, & I like red highlights. Smokiness comes out to play quickly in the nose...& that's about it. Huh.

Smoked Vanilla Gorilla is infected by something mind-blowing. This might be the FIRST BEER EVER that's so terribly I can't take another sip. Not one more. If this were a science experiment, the scientist would be dead or an extra in Deliverance by now.

Putrid. Looking down a few more reviews, it's pretty plain that this one is infected. Strong contender for the worst single thing I've ever put in my mouth...oh, never mind. Complete & utter failure.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2012 02:29:54 | More by maximum12
Photo of macrosmatic
macrosmatic

Florida

2.3/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed from notes. Poured from 12 oz. bottle into pint glass.

A: Pours a dark brown to black, and forms a thin tan head. Not much visible carbonation, if any.

S: To me, the aroma is all smoky. Try as I might, I just can't get any vanilla scents. Well, as it starts to warm some, there is just a bit of vanilla here.

T: Taste follows the nose...sweet & smoky. In the flavor also, I can't find any significant vanilla until it warms, but even then it seems more of a background flavor. The smoke flavor just overwhelms any other flavors unlucky enough to be in here.

M: Thick and sticky. The smoky flavor coats the mouth.

O: In the interest of full disclosure - since apparently I don't have the patience to actually read a label in the store, I didn't realize this was a smoked beer until I got it out of the fridge. Certainly not my favorite style, but I've had a few that I actually liked. This one, though, was absolutely *not* for me. Trying to get past the smoke flavor, I thought two things: 1)It doesn't seem real possible; and 2)With Gorilla in the name, I expected to be smacked over the head with Vanilla; and was disappointed in that respect. Drain pour.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2012 03:54:31 | More by macrosmatic
Photo of CruisaC
CruisaC

Ohio

2.95/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had heard about this one, I'm a sucker for beers with vanilla. Unfortunately I skipped over the "smoked" part since I almost never care r those beers.

Pours a dark brown/black with a fleeting dark khaki head. The best part of the beer.

I get the smoke upfront but there's a strange sour smell that's creeping in on the back end. Hmmm.

Taste is smoke and sour, sour smoke, a little roasted malt. I get no whiskey notes and especially no vanilla. I'm not sure if this is what they're going for. I hate to bring up the "I" word but I can't think this is what they wanted out of this. Should have a little sweetness, no?

Mouthfeel is a little thin. What's the base beer here?

A pretty big miss for me, after some high hopes. Maybe some infection issues, maybe I need to try the non-smoked version.

Serving type: bottle

05-29-2012 01:22:55 | More by CruisaC
Photo of beer2day
beer2day

North Carolina

3.08/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark brown pour with forced 1-finger tan head. No retention and not much in the way of lace.

Nose is smoke and vanilla as expected. Roast malt and a hint of coffee. But there is a tinny, metallic note that throws things off.

Vanilla hits up front. Medium roast coffee, smoked peat, and worcestershire. Again, the metallic twang comes in - actually quite strong in the finish. Just puts me off.

Feel is a little on the light side for an 8% abv smoked beer. Wanted a bit more body here, even for a porter.

Overall, interesting attempt but that metallic flavor just does me in.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2012 01:32:08 | More by beer2day
Photo of Cold
Cold

Pennsylvania

3.3/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Opaque dark brown, no visible haze, thin brown head dissipates quickly

S: Vanilla, caramel, spicy, dark fruits, smoke, meat, vinuous

T: Sour, smoky, charred, citric, vinegar, salty smoked meats (ham, bacon, jerky), dark wine, vanilla, spicy, dark fruits

M: Starts thick and heavy, finishes thin and solvent-like

A: Salty, cured meat, sour

Overall: This is a strange and complicated beer, with big bold flavors, many of which sharply contrast. It's somewhat off-putting at first, but if you take it at face value, rather than trying to fit it into a typical description, it's an interesting experience for any beer drinker's palate. Many of the flavors happen at once, so it takes several sips to really appreciate the complexity of the beer as a whole, not to mention that it was nothing like I expected (spicy-sweet, almost cloying, heavy beer), so it took a while to get my preconceived notions out of my head and focus on what I was tasting. While Smoked Vanilla Gorilla is a beer every beer lover should try, it's also a beer that I imagine very few would like a lot. Rather, it's more of an exercise for the palate; and while I wouldn't drink more than one in a given evening, I wouldn't hesistate to get another...after some time.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2012 04:06:06 | More by Cold
Photo of angrybabboon
angrybabboon

Rhode Island

2.33/5  rDev -33.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for sharing this

Consumed 4/28/12

Appearance: Dark brown, light tan head, leaves wispy lacing - unexpectedly dark, could pass for a stout

Smell: So much smoke - kind of like a rauchbier - smoky, burnt organic matter - somewhere between charred meat and charred vegetables - overall, it kind of smells like a poorly maintained, musty barbeque grill - wet wood

Taste: Smoke and weirdness - ridiculously burnt and smoky, tastes... unhealthy - some chocolate and vanilla underneath - lots of damp, wet wood - an odd undercurrent of sourness, some odd fruits - some cardboard - I honestly don't know if this is infected, or just that there is a weird interaction between the extremely smoked malt, vanilla, and other elements

Mouthfeel: Thin to medium body, adequately carbonated, smooth, a little sticky

Overall: Not sure if infected, or just bad

So much smoke, and so much weirdness. Smoked malt doesn't begin to explain this. It's like someone decided to burn some smoked malt. Very strange, yet not awful.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2012 02:51:56 | More by angrybabboon
Photo of Goblinmunkey7
Goblinmunkey7

Massachusetts

1.58/5  rDev -55%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Appearance: Dark brown with deep red hints when held to direct light. Head is small, bubbly, and light tan. Relatively clear.

Smell: Burnt popcorn. Char and cardboard. Vanilla runs sweet and sure. So much smoke. Some lingering sweetness. Charred fire and smoke. Day old cigarette ashes. This wasn't smoked so much as it was set on fire and put out with a wet piece of cardboard covered in vanilla extract.

Taste: Did I mention that it's smoked? So much burnt and roasted malts. It has almost nothong else too it. Almost lactic tart flavor has to derive from the overcooked malts. Aggressively bitter in the sense of pure unsweetened cocoa. It's not sour persay but imparts it. Some lingering notes of vanilla, but it's quickly overshadowed by the char and burnt nature of the beer.

Mouthfeel: Thin and bubbly. Burnt lingers and dries the whole thing out.

Overall: This is by no means infected. It's so over smoked and bitter it comes across as lactic and sour. Vanilla is almost nonexistent and would really help out if it made an appearance.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2012 02:50:07 | More by Goblinmunkey7
Photo of largadeer
largadeer

California

1.73/5  rDev -50.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Extra from jpmclaug. Thanks!

I'm greeted by a blast of vanilla as soon as I uncap the bottle. Pours a muddy auburn color, but rests in the glass an opaque dark brown capped by a thin but lasting head. Smoke is much more dominant on the nose once this is in the glass, but there's an element of sweet vanilla along with an undercurrent of tart dark fruit and roasted malt. The palate is all over the place, with clashing flavors of smoke, acidic dark fruit, lactic sourness, vanilla and charred malt. I can't imagine that this was intentionally soured, and boy does the sourness not work here. The body is pretty thin, and the finish is more sour than roasty. This may have been an interesting beer prior to infection, but it's hard to tell.

Serving type: bottle

04-21-2012 20:30:16 | More by largadeer
Photo of scottfrie
scottfrie

California

3.75/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into Delirium Tremens snifter. Thank goes to jbck109 for this one.

A: Pours a very dark brown color with a finger of soft looking dense dark tan head that slowly bubbled away into a fuzzy film. Very fine spots of lacing were left down the glass.
S: They don’t call it Smoked Vanilla Gorilla for nothing. Smoke, campfire, barbeque and char dominate, but I do get some sweeter hints of vanilla pudding beneath.
T: Smoke is prominent but not as much as the nose suggested. I get more roasted characteristic than I do smoke. Toasted malts and grains come through nicely with a little bit of milk chocolate. Vanilla still reminds me of pudding, and is present in the finish. The aftertaste is lightly smoky.
M: Thin and watery mouthfeel. Bubbles are soft but low. This could really use a boost in body.
O: This bottle doesn’t seem to be infected, or if it is it hasn’t developed enough to be detrimental. I thought this was a rather delicious smoked porter. It was a bit thin, but it certainly was easy to drink. Thanks again, Jay!

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2012 02:28:43 | More by scottfrie
Photo of Stalgondo
Stalgondo

Georgia

2.75/5  rDev -21.7%

03-31-2012 16:59:48 | More by Stalgondo
Photo of nickfl
nickfl

Florida

1.98/5  rDev -43.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

A - Pours with one finger of tan foam on top of a dark brown body with dark amber highlights showing through. The head settles rapidly and leaves moderate lace.

S - Molasses, smoke, and caramel.

T - Sweet, and slightly sour caramel up front with a bit of molasses. Smoke and black cherry notes in the middle with a disconcerting band aid note. Finishes with more sour fruit and unpleasant phenolics.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and a sweet finish.

D - Wow, this is flat out awful. The smoke and vanilla come together to create a beer that tastes like rootbeer with bandaids floating in it. I couldn't pour this one down the drain fast enough.

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2012 06:29:04 | More by nickfl
Photo of Kromes
Kromes

Georgia

2.3/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: Pitch black with a finger's width tan colored head and good lacing down the glass.

S: Sweet roasted and smoked malt with chocolate and a bit of vinegar....which is weird.

T: Up front there is a little bit of roasted malt, but it is taken over by a very, very citric acid bite. No Bueno. I'll keep this review until I can try another....yuck.

M: The beer is rather light and smooth...but then finishes with a citric acid bitterness that kills everything.

O: Not good. I'll try again and update if necessary.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2012 00:33:32 | More by Kromes
Photo of mikereaser
mikereaser

Pennsylvania

3/5  rDev -14.5%

03-18-2012 01:59:22 | More by mikereaser
Photo of tewaris
tewaris

Minnesota

1.1/5  rDev -68.7%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

By the label and by its very name, it's clear that this ale might have a lot to offer. Let's find out. Pours a very thin looking dark brown with some bubbles. Smells disgusting: stale coffee and... urine? There definitely are some restroom notes in here. Barrels? Vanilla? Smoke? Negative on all counts. Sour as hell and that's about it... raw mangoes? This is one of the few unintentionally infected beers I have run into. The bugs have taken over everything this might have had to offer. A major fail.

3, 1, 1, 1, 1

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2012 11:34:29 | More by tewaris
Photo of kspongeworthy
kspongeworthy

Texas

2.25/5  rDev -35.9%

03-14-2012 16:59:18 | More by kspongeworthy
Photo of WorldWideStout
WorldWideStout

Maryland

3.58/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark chocolate brown with a surprisingly big, beige head. Eventually settles at around three fingers, and though it fades once I begin drinking, there is lacing aplenty.

S: Hmm, sort of smells like a wild ale. Brett, sour cherries, and some meaty smoke.

T: Starts off with those sour cherries. Towards the middle I get bacon and smoked ham. Brett and cherries come back towards the end, but the after taste is decidedly roasty and smoky.

M: Carbonation is a bit too present in the first second or two of the sip, but then moves to the background, keeping the body light but still allowing the flavors through.

O: I looked at a few other reviews and it seems that some think this is the way the beer was intended to taste, but I find that hard to believe. That being said, the smokey combined with the sour works surprisingly well. I would like to try a non-infected bottle some day.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2012 04:22:44 | More by WorldWideStout
Photo of OldTime
OldTime

Georgia

3.75/5  rDev +6.8%

03-08-2012 07:09:36 | More by OldTime
Photo of wisrarebeer
wisrarebeer

Wisconsin

2.48/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: deep, dark ruby color, clear, with nice tan head that was full but dissipated to a veil
S: more chocolate and roasted malt than smoke, medium nose
T: there's something wrong with this beer that is not evident in the nose, sour taste like it's gone off, not incredibly sour but enough to realize it's there and it detracts from what should be a chewy porter
M: I can't get past the sour taste, thin for its ABV and style

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2012 01:29:55 | More by wisrarebeer
Red Brick Brick Mason Series #4: Smoked Vanilla Gorilla from Red Brick Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 190 ratings.