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Hale's Troll Porter - Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub

Not Rated.
Hale's Troll PorterHale's Troll Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

59 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 59
Reviews: 33
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 10.94%
Wants: 6
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub visit their website
Washington, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: RoyalT on 03-13-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Hale's Troll Porter Alström Bros
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Ratings: 59 | Reviews: 33 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of harrymel
2.53/5  rDev -34.1%

On tap at post St ale house.

A: dark, dark beer with mocha foam atop which is persistent. Rings of lace.
S: nutty with slightly too much toasted character making it a little too dry.
T: malts are coffee like with a tad more bitter than I would prefer in this brew. A slightly astringent and almost sour character here.
M: full bodied with light carb and a semi slick finish.
O:. Not particularly enjoyable.

harrymel, Nov 28, 2011
Photo of trytoketchup
3/5  rDev -21.9%

trytoketchup, Dec 07, 2013
Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.03/5  rDev -21.1%

Tried on-tap at the brewery in Seattle.

Pours a deep brown colour, with flashes of red to it. Body is opaque and solid, with a fluid aspect to it. Head is a pocked solid film of mocha-off-white. Some solid lace. Looks pretty decent.

Some roast on the nose, a little nutty grain characters and some mild malt sweetness. Overall, it's pretty dull, and very generic.

Light roast on the front palate, but very little body or sweetness to back it up—it leaves the mid-palate feeling rather weak and empty with some mild carbonic characters. Slightly grainy roasted characters on the back. It just underlies how generic it feels.

Mouthfeel lingers a little, but it's still exceptionally light.

This is very average, and not very exciting. It reminds me of a "dark ale" brewed by a mass-producing brewery, only paying lip-service to what makes the style good.

lacqueredmouse, Aug 07, 2012
Photo of benscottcary
3.08/5  rDev -19.8%

benscottcary, Today at 12:54 AM
Photo of RedDiamond
3.18/5  rDev -17.2%

I'm a big fan of the Fremont Troll. As I recall, my band took some promo shots with the Troll back in... what was it?... '91? That troll sure lasted longer than my band.

In any event, I imagine the mighty Troll might prefer a porter with a bit more attitude than this one. This is a brown porter, not brewed to the robust style more common to our region. So roasted qualities are in short supply and the taste tips more to the sweet. The beer is not flawed in any way, but neither does it command much enthusiasm. The Troll shows a casual chocolate sweetness with enough bittering to grab your attention and tastes like the 1980's-style recipe we've mostly outgrown. Not bad, but better beers await you.

RedDiamond, Mar 03, 2008
Photo of BostonPhilly
3.25/5  rDev -15.4%

BostonPhilly, Jun 24, 2013
Photo of dnichols
3.35/5  rDev -12.8%

I was served a pint from the tap in a chilled glass at Uncle Sam's Saloon in Kennewick, Washington.

A: It poured dark ruddy body with a tall caramel head that hung in there for quite some time before falling to a thin layer over the liquid.

S: It had a sweet roasted malt profile with hints of chocolate and spices.

T: The sweet and biting roasted malts dominated before a tangy biting bitterness from the hops coated the back of my tongue. The alcohol was well hidden.

M: It was light to medium bodied with plenty of carbonation and a somewhat watery presence. It started sweet and ended bitter.

D: It was a fine brew with a nice balance of flavors, light body and pleasant appearance.

dnichols, Nov 15, 2008
Photo of ccrida
3.4/5  rDev -11.5%

On draught served in a footed tulip pint, Troll Porter is dark, ruddy brown with a tight off-white head leaving scattered lace.

Smell is muted, a little roast, more caramel, especially as it warms.

Taste is a little roasty, lots of coffee, a touch nutty, and mild acidity. A touch of minty fuggles as well, which is welcome.

Mouthfeel is pretty soft, smooth, slick. The nitro lightens the body.

Drinkability is fine, it's a decent porter, but not particularly notable. Average.

ccrida, Feb 16, 2012
Photo of drewbage
3.45/5  rDev -10.2%

Sampled in Imperial Pint at the Brewery Pub.

Beer pours a deep dark opaque black brown with ruby laser like highlights in the light. Head is a low tan and big bubbled that disappears quickly.

Nose is of lightly roasted coffee with a ending note of diacetyl butteriness.

Flavor is similiar to a dark roasted roux with a thick coating feeling mixed with a brown butter impression of diacetyl.

A quick touch of black malt acid marks the knee of the palate before a thick finish with a hint of the sweetness that proceeds.

drewbage, Jun 13, 2003
Photo of RoyalT
3.48/5  rDev -9.4%

Appearance – This one came out of the tap a dark ruby in color. It was quite pretty and almost dark purple when held up to the sunlight. The head came up nicely as well and pooled on top of the liquid.

Smell – The roasted malts and big liqueur-style sweetness are about evenly balanced in this porter. The nose though is really light and hard to pick apart.

Taste – The roasty malts are light at the tongue but very pleasing. The sweets really pick things up. It’s a natural kind of sweetness almost like a malt syrup.

Mouthfeel – This is somewhere between light and medium-bodied and very creamy and smooth in the mouth. There’s a touch of bitterness at the finish that nicely rounds out the mouthfeel.

Drinkability – This was a bit light but otherwise went down nicely.

RoyalT, Mar 13, 2005
Photo of Hopmodium
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

Hopmodium, Jan 14, 2013
Photo of elektronen
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

elektronen, Jul 12, 2013
Photo of leedorham
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

leedorham, Jan 25, 2013
Photo of Magpie14
3.6/5  rDev -6.3%

A: poured pretty much brown with burnt edges and some oily reds at the rim. This beer displayed the most intricate splattered lacing I have seen in some time. It conjured up small gatherings here and there, all colored a dingy yellow-white. The head fizzed away to leave a meager ring to keep me company for most of the drink

S: hearty earthy chocolate malts, some hops, and if your sniff hard enough maybe some chocolate brownie whiffs. Judged by the nose, I am going to be disappointed. I could hardly gather any roasted malts. But, I do not give up hope yet...

T: alright, things are swinging around. My first sip gathered a blocky bakers chocolate bar and a few roasted malts within. These flavors come across much stronger on the palate, mostly the chocolate, than in the nose. I dare say that the darker flavors hint at some molasses and coffee notes.
The tail end of the sip gathers some flaky green herbal hops that lend a touch of spice to the tongue. The bitter chocolate and the shot of grassy grapefruit hops provide a soft tanginess in the finish (chocolate covered grapefruits?)

M: I am finding this porters body to be worthy of note. The first word that comes to mind is slick. The body is a sturdy medium and seems alright for a porter, maybe a bit thin? Not bad though

D: in the end, roasted flavors made a showing and the hops came with a vigilante force. It gives the tongue a workout and is fairly easy to drink, I don't mind this porter...hops and chocolate

Magpie14, Jun 15, 2009
Photo of brentk56
3.6/5  rDev -6.3%

Appearance: Pours a pretty dark chocolate with ruby highlights and a forthy mocha head; nice retention and lace patterns

Smell: For all the malt that is in this brew, it is very hard to discern it in the aroma, which is more herbaciously hoppy than anything else

Taste: I'm not surprised, therefore, that the hops in the aroma immediately jump into the flavor profile, with just a little hint of roast and chocolate underneath; by mid-palate, the brew turns a bit phenolic, with an odd plastic flavor; after the swallow, the roast finally arrives, and the finish has a coffee ground bitterness

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: While this beer has its merits, I cannot say that I am too crazy about the flavor profile

Thanks, cannabanaceae, for the opportunity

brentk56, Mar 09, 2009
Photo of hreb
3.66/5  rDev -4.7%

22oz bottle served in pint glass. Beer pours muddy brown with a heavy and substantial head. Caramely porter aroma suggests sweetness and toastiness. But the nose does not prepare me for the massive viscous beast in the bottle. Big on coffee flavors from the roasted malt. Heavy, but also very neutral on the back of the tongue. I don't know if I should describe this as delicate or overpowering; it's like there's a really high volume of really mild flavors. One thing is for sure: it masks it's 6.6% ABV (per Hale's website) perfectly. The finish is off-dry and pretty well balanced for how tall the profile of this porter is. I don't get any particular citrus or other specific hop flavors, but there is a swarm of lace left on my glass. Resiny.

hreb, Jan 14, 2014
Photo of Proteus93
3.68/5  rDev -4.2%

A: A deep brown with ruby highlights... close to black. Head picks up late, but ends up a bubbly creamy light tan and sticks around for a while.

S: Smoky or toasty malts... a little bigger than some I've had? Coffee-like, and mildly chocolate aromas, almost stouty.

T: A pretty big porter, very malty... a little tinny or acedic - can't quite put a finger on it. Some deep, dark fruits, a touch of coffee, and a sweet edge post-finish.

M + D: Calm, smooth, and a pretty hefty aftertaste. Makes for a little slower drinker, but quite good if taken that way. A lot of burnt notes through it all... maybe like burnt rubber in some ways? Just a little though... it's decent, and I'd give it another shot... a bomber purchase at a time, probably.

Proteus93, May 11, 2008
Photo of woemad
3.68/5  rDev -4.2%

Had this on tap at The Elk Public House for $4.00. This is named for the infamous Troll statue/sculpture located under the Aurora Street Bridge near Seattle's Fremont district, which depicts a large troll devouring an actual Volkswagen Beetle.

This was a dark brown in color, with a good sized tan head. Mild amount of lace – it was there, but it wasn’t terribly noteworthy.

Smell was of roasted malt and brown sugar. I thought this, while tasty smelling, could use a little bit less sweetness in the nose.

This was pretty much the same as the nose. It starts out with a nicely roasted character. Then there’s a sweet brown sugar taste. This didn’t taste bad at all, but I thought it could have been better if it was more toned down. Still, a fine porter to quaff.

This was somewhere between medium and full-bodied. Acceptable level of carbonation for a porter.

This was a little too sweet to be considered an outstanding porter, but it was still quite good. The sweetness wasn’t to an unpleasant, cloying degree, so I think I could have had several of these if time (I had to be at work in an hour) and finances (I’m currently a broke-ass poor grad student) permitted.

woemad, Apr 05, 2005
Photo of inlimbo77
3.73/5  rDev -2.9%

16oz, tap in Bainbridge Harbour

A: Deep dark opaque brown. There is some reddish hues around the bottom. Fluffy slightly off white nitro blanket head. Leaving tons of lacing on the glass.

S: Mild roast. Milk chocolate. Some slightly piney hops as well.

T: A little bit of bitterness up front. In the middle of the sip you get that roast and chocolate character. The nitro makes this nice and smooth.

M: Medium bodies

O: B-

inlimbo77, Sep 10, 2012
Photo of wchasse222
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

wchasse222, Oct 15, 2013
Photo of cre83
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

cre83, May 14, 2013
Photo of Zach122
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Zach122, Oct 31, 2013
Photo of BillRoth
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

BillRoth, Dec 29, 2013
Photo of Asics
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Asics, May 25, 2013
Photo of Gueuzedude
3.78/5  rDev -1.6%

Probably shouldn't be retired as this beer has just recently started being distributed in Arizona.

Pours with a fat, one-finger thick, light brown colored head that sits on top of an opaque, almost black colored beer. The aroma smells oddly of a light oxidation; which is odd because this bottle is fairly new. Malt notes of roast coffee, deeply toasted grain, dark chocolate, blackened raisins and even some rum like notes are also noticeable in the aroma.

Thick and chewy, much more so than I was expecting. The beer does seem to taste lightly oxidized, but it is rich enough that this actually adds to the flavor & complexity of this brew. Sweet notes of darkly caramelized sugar and burnt fruit are offset by a bitterness born of burnt grain and hops. Chewy chocolate notes joint dusty cocoa flavors as well as some solid black coffee notes. At times this tastes like a combination of chocolate and coffee liquors, though it definitely leans towards the coffee side of the flavor spectrum. There is some alcohol presence here, which leads to a soft warming sensation as the beer slides down your throat; in fact this lingers on in the throat after the beer is gone. The roast malt character is quite pronounced here; at times it is a nice balancing note to the malt sweetness and chewy body, but at other times it can lean towards an acrid bitterness and acidity.

Quite a tasty brew, I certainly was not expecting something with quite such a pronounced flavor profile. This is definitely on the rich, chewy side of the Porter spectrum.

Gueuzedude, Aug 08, 2007
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Hale's Troll Porter from Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub
86 out of 100 based on 59 ratings.