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Great Lakes Harry Porter And The Bourbon Soaked Vanilla Bean - Great Lakes Brewery

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Great Lakes Harry Porter And The Bourbon Soaked Vanilla Bean
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BA SCORE
85
very good

42 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 42
Reviews: 17
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 8.14%
Wants: 8
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewery visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
American Porter |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Sammy on 03-13-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 42 | Reviews: 17 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by andrenaline:
Photo of andrenaline
3.84/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Props to peensteen for hooking up this brew...

A - Pours pitch black with two fingers of head, solid retention and nice sheeting lacing.

S - Solid nose, burnt cocoa, espresso undertones, hints of vanilla and a touch of burnt toast.

T - Much like the nose, loads of cocoa, some bitter coffee notes, and sweet vanilla. Bourbon is incredibly subdued and a tad underwhelming, but noticeable if you focus on trying to identify it.

M - Medium bodied, smooth and wet.

O - A tasty brew with a solid flavour profile, though a tad disappointing from the bourbon standpoint (though to be expected given that the vanilla beans were the only thing exposed). Nonetheless a tasty brew worthy of seeking out.

andrenaline, Mar 01, 2014
More User Reviews:
Photo of beerhunter13
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

beerhunter13, Sep 25, 2012
Photo of Sammy
3.98/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Bar Volo. Very flavourful and rich porter, particularly as it warmed. Thick, coffee, some significant bourbon and mostly the vanilla. A little real bean, it was really strong. Was it extract added? The brewers say not. A must try porter.Black bodied.Smooth mouthfeel.

Sammy, Mar 13, 2011
Photo of joemcgrath27
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

joemcgrath27, May 31, 2014
Photo of Rutager
4.45/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Many thanks to TheSevenDuffs for this beer with such a fantastic name!
Poured in to my souvineer cast glass Lord of the Rings "Strider" chalice from Burger King circa 2001, complete with light up base. Don't be jealous of my bling, haters.

Appearance. Pours a really deep brown-red, almost black with 1.5 fingers of creamy thick tan head that leaves some good lacing.

Smell. Sweet bakers chocolate and some dark roasted malt, sweet real vanilla and just a hint of smooth booze. Smells like dessert.

Taste. Sweet vanilla and burnt sugar, dark roasty malts, some nice bitter coffee, a bit of dark unsweetened chocolate in the finish.

Mouthfeel. Medium+ body with medium-low carbonation.

Overall. A great dessert beer that isn't overly sweet. Deserves to be on the Canadian top 100 list.

Rutager, Jun 19, 2012
Photo of Phyl21ca
3.53/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a dark black color porter with a large light brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of vanilla and light bourbon is quite nice with light vegetable notes. Taste is a mix between some vanilla beans notes with some bourbon with light corn notes and light black chocolates notes. Body is about average with good carbonation. Overall this was an enjoyable beer but I would to get rid of the vegetable finish.

Phyl21ca, Nov 11, 2013
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Fresh Project X bottle to Founders tulip. Stated ABV of 7% and IBU of 45.

A - Deep brown with one finger of bubbly espresso coloured head that very quickly receded to a few bubbles.

S - Roasted malts, chocolate, sweet vanilla and a hint of bourbon in the background.

T - Roasted malts, vanilla, dark chocolate and the slightest hint of bourbon in the background. A noticeable bitterness that might be partially accentuated by some noticeable ABV. A fairly prominent sweetness is here as well, which is balanced nicely by the 45 IBU.

M - Medium body, somewhat smooth and silky. Light carbonation.

O - A solid and very interesting beer. Would happily buy this again.

TheSevenDuffs, Apr 04, 2012
Photo of irishkyle21
4/5  rDev +5%

irishkyle21, Feb 21, 2014
Photo of spinrsx
3.73/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

650ml Bottle from the Ottawa LCBO for $6

Appearance - Dark brown colour with an above average size frothy light brown head. I can't make out the amount of carbonation showing and there is some decent lacing. The head lasted for over 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, chocolate, vanilla

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, chocolate, and light coffee. There is also some vanilla and a bit of a graininess. Not much Bourbon.

Overall - An above average very drinkable porter. The vanilla is subtle and the bourbon is even more subtle - I couldn't taste it. I'd pick this up again if it was in tall cans or 6 packs etc.

spinrsx, Jun 01, 2014
Photo of liamt07
4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Volo, Great Lakes/Mike Lackey feature. Into a tulip.

Poured relatively black, with some cola colour at the edges. Mild lace, collar is left behind. Nose holds some milk chocolate, vanilla, light bourbon and is quite nice. Taste has some dark coffee and espresso (which I didn't get any hint of in the nose, but nonetheless..), some bourbon, which is well hidden and subdued vanilla again. Fairly well integrated, but is dominated by some off carbonation which fizzes and disrupts a balance which I thought was quite nice. Mouthfeel is overcarbed, and felt like a soft drink at points. Drinkability suffers from this. Unfortunately, I'm not sure what happened here as everyone praised this one throughout the night. Maybe I'll get another pour of this at some point whereupon I'll re-rate it. 4/4/3/25/3

Re-review on April 28, 2012 - 650ml bottle form the brewery. 7% alchol this time around and only 30 IBUs.

Black body with a brown head of a couple fingers. Good retention and laces real nice. Real smooth chocolate and cocoa on the nose. A good bit of vanilla is in there too, but not much in terms of bourbon. A bit of roast as well. Flavour has cocoa and dark, roasty malts at the forfront, and some flavourful American hops that come through mid-mouth. Still a a bit of vanilla in here as well. Carbonation is completely appropriate and certainly an improvement from my last experience. A very solid porter that's supremely drinkable. 45/4/4/4/45

liamt07, Mar 14, 2011
Photo of SebD
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: It has a nice jet black color to it. It has a nice thick tan head that dies down moderately and leaves nice lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitly give out hints of chocolate, vanilla, roasted malts and some bourbon.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a nice rich roasted malt character to it with some chocolate, vanilla and bourbon. Moderate bitterness.

Mouthfeel: It has a medium carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with good solid flavors and aromas.

SebD, May 16, 2012
Photo of Hoppy_McGee
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Hoppy_McGee, Feb 13, 2014
Photo of byronic
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

byronic, Mar 04, 2014
Photo of jrenihan
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer is black with a small, bubbly tan head. A sticky and frothy film sticks around for quite awhile.

Smell is faint but nice. Vanilla is the most noticeable element.

As for taste, the vanilla is very nice- but I am a sucker for vanilla. The bourbon is lighter than I expected, though is fairly strong in the finish. A nice malty background gives the beer a bit of a roasted cocoa flavour. The vanilla and bourbon are the main event, however.

Minimal carbonation, medium bodied. A little lighter than I would have liked but pretty good.

Overall, a very enjoyable beer. Vanilla and bourbon together is a good idea!

jrenihan, Mar 08, 2012
Photo of polloenfuego
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

polloenfuego, Mar 01, 2014
Photo of Yeoman9459
4.73/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served into a snifter that i bought at the brewery when i picked this beer up.

Appearance - black, small amount of head that didn't last for too long. Looks good for the style.

Smell - the smell is a ton of vanilla when its cold and as it warms it becomes more complex, with the chocolate coming out. Coffee playing a small role and then the a slight bourbon note.

Taste - vanilla and chocolate are heavy in the taste. As it warms, similar to the smell, it becomes more complex with the bourbon coming out.

Mouthfeel - feels nice, medium bodied, good for this beer.

Overall - of course another good beer by this brewery, nice to see an ontario craft brewery doing something different. This is probably one of my favorite porters, along with their Robust Porter. I was on the fence about this style until I tasted these. Wish i could be a little more precise with grading giving more 4.75's. Im not overly familiar with the style but I think its unreal.

Yeoman9459, May 13, 2012
Photo of evil_liver
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

evil_liver, Mar 10, 2014
Photo of KeKeKumba
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

KeKeKumba, Jun 28, 2013
Photo of ktat
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

ktat, Aug 13, 2014
Photo of Pmicdee
4/5  rDev +5%

Pmicdee, Apr 01, 2014
Photo of wordemupg
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

650ml bomber poured into tulip 28/5/12 sent out West by liamt07 thanks dude

A pretty black with just some red highlights at the edge when held to the light, short lived thumbs width of mocha foam leaves no lace. Second pour leaves some spotty random lace but still little retention

S loads of vanilla and coco powder, faint bourbon with a hint of smoke, some chocolate covered raisins with a little licorice. smells great with everything meshing together in just the right proportions

T charred wood and coco come out strong, the complexity I found on the nose is not quite there, less vanilla but that still leaves a fair bit, some chocolate syrup's in there too, still decent but the smell rocked

M thick, creamy and smooth, a little sticky on the lips and zero heat, aftertaste is charred vanilla but it works really well

O pretty easy too drink and I struggle too find any of the booze anywhere except my head, if it tasted as good as it smelled we'd have something amazing but still very good

mellow for sure and something I'd drink again, this one says 7% on the label but I'd believe it's 5.3% as this ones pretty smooth. Another thank you to liamt07 I'm pretty glad I tried this one

wordemupg, May 29, 2012
Photo of JMBSH
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

JMBSH, Aug 25, 2014
Photo of korguy123
4.23/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Project X bottle into snifter.
Special thanks to TheSevenDuffs for this gem.

A- Totally opaque brown/black pour with a finger width chunky light tan head. Lacing is great.

S- Nice char with fresh pressed coffee. Definite vanilla and chocolate. Subtle bourbon with a touch of brown sugar and oak. I get a bit of marshmallow in this as well

T- Oh momma that is excellent. Right up front dark, bitter black coffee with a big punch of brown sugar and vanilla. Bourbon is hiding slightly but melds well with the dark chocolate finish.

M- Slightly lighter than medium, good carbonation with a lingering bitter finish.

O- This is something I dream about. Bourbon? Check! Vanilla? Check! Dark and roasty? Oh baby yes! This is something I'd like to see on a more available basis.

korguy123, May 05, 2012
Photo of kevinlater
3/5  rDev -21.3%

kevinlater, Feb 23, 2014
Photo of Jeffo
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another cool brew from Hopsolutely. Cheers!

From a bomber into a snifter
Tank 10 Series
IBU: 18
1001 Vanilla Beans

APPEARANCE: A clearer brown pour yields a 1+ finger, foamy, medium-thinner looking, light tan head with great retention. Bistre brown body with medium levels of carbonation evident. Head slowly fades to a splotchy wisp and ring. A swirly wisp remains until the end and leaves some splotchy lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Vanilla beans, sweet cream, milk chocolate and some light butterscotch aromas as well. Very faint bourbon in the back, but the spirit is restrained. Quite nice really.

TASTE: Vanilla and sweet cream up front, with more creamy sweetness at the swallow. Medium and lingering finish of vanilla beans, sweet cream, milk chocolate, caramel sweetness and some faint hints of bourbon as well. Sweet in general, though everything is balanced out rather nicely.

PALATE: Medium body and medium carbonation. Begins slightly prickly but smoothens out nicely as it sits, goes down fine and finishes slightly sticky.

OVERALL: Quite an enjoyable brew here. A lot of vanilla porters end up being overdone and overly sweet, but this one is balanced nicely and is an easy drinker. Soaking the vanilla beans in bourbon also added a nice, restrained spirit quality that was well done. Complex and multi-dimensional, this one is definitely worth checking out if you get the chance. Thanks again for the opportunity Hopsolutely! Recommended.

Jeffo, Saturday at 10:17 AM
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Great Lakes Harry Porter And The Bourbon Soaked Vanilla Bean from Great Lakes Brewery
85 out of 100 based on 42 ratings.