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5Beans | Sixpoint Brewery

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417 Ratings

Brewed by:
Sixpoint Brewery
New York, United States

Style: Baltic Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
The Mad Scientists walked through an ancient bazaar, sniffing out ingredients for their next formulation. The stalls were buzzing with activity as exotic spice vendors promoted their fragrant wares. But what ingredient would make the fabled 5th bean? The enticing aroma of an oily, smoky pod – black cardamom – caught their attention. Now that would turn the Imperial to Bazaar...

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 417 |  Reviews: 117
Reviews by DougT:
Photo of DougT
4.01/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

More User Reviews:
Photo of Roguer
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark blackish-brown, with a modest head size and OK retention. Decent lacing. Deep, dark, and inviting.

Very smooth and sweet aroma. Vanilla and chocolate, coffee and cream. I don't know what cardamom smells or tastes like, but there's a bit of a cinnamon/nutmeg-like spice to the aroma. The malt seems to take a back seat to the adjunct, which isn't entirely unpleasant; there's no char or ashy bite to the roast. It seems to have lost a bit of the sharp edge 4Beans had, which is an improvement.

Flavor follows: it's a sweet dessert-like stout, albeit a touch sharper and thinner for that style. As with the aroma, there's a hint of spice on the palate that doesn't quite mesh with the ingredients list. Many of the flavors seem to blend together nicely, instead of standing out on their own.

Quite smooth; still lively and active. There's sufficient bite from the carbonation, and the finish lingers, perhaps a touch too sweet.

I'm surprised at the thinness of the brew, considering it's no slouch at 10%. The style here is listed as Baltic Porter, whereas on their website it's listed simply as a porter (or Bazaar Porter). That might explain the thinness, if it's actually made using lager yeast.

Sixpoint once again comes up with an excellent flavored stout, sure to satisfy. Yet, I can't help but think there's still room for improvement (in almost every area). Thankfully, I have no doubt Sixpoint will do just that.

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Photo of DIM
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I love that this doesn't taste like a gimmicky attempt to keep the bean count climbing. This comes across to me as an excellent big porter, satisfyingly roasty and warming, with hints of sweetness and coffee from the 5 beans. I won't pretend I can discern them all, I just appreciate the subtle layers they add to a stellar porter.

Gifted a 4 pack by a co worker, thanks Pat!

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Photo of mschrei
4.41/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a beer that changes quite a bit when it's poured. I find it mellows a bit and has less of a tang to it. Dark with nice edging, almost a cola color. Coffee is on the forefront of the smell, but it's not overpowering. The coffee taste seems more mixed in with the rest of the beer, again, not overly powerful.
Mildly smooth tang near the back end, and the alcohol is hidden very well.

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Photo of CraigP83
4.61/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Black, huge tan head. Smells wonderful coffee, vanilla, earthy sweetness. Full bodied, cocoa, I don't know wtf cardamom is but it must be delicious. This beer is fantastic, rivals victory at sea. Mouthfeel is fucking fantastic if that's your thing, a little creamy and not thin

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Photo of Wiffler27
4.23/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

pours jet black with a solid head, looks good.

smell is nice, mellow coffee and chocolate malt.

taste is sharp bitterness but not hoppy IPA bitterness. it's chocolate then coffee bitterness. good beer, i think this is more sharp than 4Beans but is still good. certainly worth a try, Sixpoint rarely lets me down.

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Photo of Greywulfken
4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Okay, so we're up to 5 beans now? Vanilla, coffee, cocoa, romano, and now black cardamom pods - assuming the romano beans are still in there, but there's no mention of them on the box or can. Pitch black brew in the glass, with a creamy albeit slim head. The nose on this thing is tremendous - it'll find you across the room - big coffee and chocolate and vanilla. Cardamom comes through a bit on the taste as something earthy and spicy, for lack of better descriptors. Smooth with a medium-heavy body and a vague tingle of carbonation. I'm digging it - maybe more than 4Beans, which was a little better than 3Beans. You have to pick this up if you've been following the series. Still waiting on the bourbon barrel bean installment...

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Photo of Evilyak
4.27/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

i'm not very smart, because i can only figure out what 4 of the 5 beans are. oh well. some mysteries weren't meant to be solved.

pours out viscous and dark, with a finger of tan head that dissipates quickly. soapy lacing.

in the nose, i get 2 beans up front - cardamom and coffee. a touch acrid but warm.

roasty and bitter. i get 3 beans here - the coffee and cardamom again with the vanilla rounding it out at the end. cacao gets a little lost in this one for me, but maybe that's adding to the roasty flavor.

thick, with decent carbonation. alcohol at 10% is very well hidden.

i took a break from the leaves in the yard to have one of these, and it fits quite nicely into a pleasant fall afternoon.

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Photo of scootny
4.34/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A vigorous pour yields a gorgeous bread. Great retention and a slow fade. Head is a light brown, like an old oak barrel. A seriously black brown liquid. Impenetrable and no visible carbonation. Lots of lacing and the beer stays lightly covered.

A rich coffee aroma rises up immediately with a piquant edge. Subtle notes of vanilla, dark chocolate,
Light fruitiness and roasted grains. Sweet molasses and very faint alcohol.

Flavor says "Sit back, indulge yourself in my richness and unwind". So I did. Coffee is still the front man. Vanilla is a major supporter. Cocao gives rich, deep, chocolate. Mild date and fig fruitiness. Cardamom adds spice and mild bite. Earthy hops linger and give a long dry finish. No trace of alcohol.

The Romano beans give a lush rich texture. Feel has weight and viscosity but stops short of syrup, short of slick. Smooth carbonation and velvet swallow. Yum.

A wonderful brew. Goes down like a welcome cup of Joe or cocoa on the winter season. Thanks to the gang at Sixpoint.

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Photo of darktronica
4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A very refreshing Baltic porter; the cardamom is a great accent, and I wish it would catch on as an ingredient for other breweries to experiment with more widely. It works very well as a complement to a Baltic porter with coffee. This is also deceptively light in body and smooth for a 10% ABV beer; I looked away twice and my glass was nearly empty.

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Photo of seedyone
4.45/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

From can at home. As a fan of the 4Bean, when I saw this had hit the market, I jumped at the chance to give it a try.

I like it.

Since I know the care Sixpoint puts into it's releases (& products in general) my curiosity was peeked enough to find what I could about the cast of characters in the 5 Bean line up.

Aside from the usual suspects from the 4Bean, chocolate, vanilla & coffee, I was not familiar with the Romano bean. My first thought was it was to add body (since the others were outstanding in the flavor profile), but made the mistake of thinking it would be via a starch or carbohydrate, like wheat or oats might contribute. On further investigation I see it has quite a different character that serves nearly the same purpose but in a less 'granular' way & to great & IMO, positive effect.

This leaves me wondering where has my old friend cardamom's gone? I thought it was on the bill. Since it is a most distinct fragrance & flavor, I figured it would be hard to miss. Perhaps that is the issue, it does have a tendency to overpower other players.

In the end there is no doubt this is a porter made with great care & the result is a high quality brew.

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Photo of The_Snow_Bird
4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured a dark brown with a light brown head on top. Could smell coffee, chocolate, and sweetness probably the vanilla. Tastes exactly like how it smelled.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. can into a chalice.

Appearance: Pours jet black with a moderate amount of bubbles. Solid finger of tan head that settles into a thin creamy patch.

Smell: A roasty and spicy dark malt driven aroma with a scent of coffee, chocolate, and spice. Dark roasted barley malt with a scent of dark chocolate, cacao, coffee beans, toast, caramel, and biscuit with yeast. Spice hints of cardamom and nutmeg. Sweet hints of vanilla and brown sugar. Subtle hints of leather and black licorice. A very good aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a roasty and spicy dark malt driven taste with notes of coffee, chocolate, and spice. Dark roasted barley malt with notes of coffee beans, dark chocolate, cacao, toast, biscuit, and caramel along with some yeast. Spice notes of cardamom and nutmeg. Sweet taste of vanilla and brown sugar. Light undertones of leather, anise, and earthy hop bitterness. A really nice taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy, slick, and pretty smooth. Minimal alcohol heat.

Overall: A very good Imperial Coffee Porter. Good roasty coffee and chocolate flavor with a nice kick of spice.

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Photo of fmccormi
4.23/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Straight pour from a 12oz can to an oversized wineglass (JK stemware). This has a canning date of October 15, 2016, if I’m not mistaken (“BB15OCT2018 02 12”), which would make this can just over six weeks old at the time of consumption. Should be fine for the style.

Appearance (4.75): Two and a half fingers of khaki-colored foam rise off of the pour, with a frothy, pock-marked surface capping a black body with translucent, cola-colored highlights at the edges. It leaves scattered bits of tan, fat splotches of lace all around the glass, and chunky foam creeps up the sides of the glass at the edges of the head. This is gorgeous, especially considering the beer’s size.

Smell (4.25): Coffee and chocolate notes blend for an espresso-like, fruity, slightly metallic type of roastiness. Baker’s chocolate, cold-brewed espresso roast coffee, and definitely some cardamom jump right out at you, with the smooth, sweet vanilla note coming out as it warms. Fortunately, that vanilla isn’t overpowering. Swirl it and aerate it just a little bit, though, and that cardamom comes out quite a bit more—but still restrained enough to retain a sense of integration. It’s a really interesting note.

Taste (4.0): Whoa, okay, the cacao/cardamom/vanilla combo is coming out a lot more on the palate. Smooth cocoa has its sweeter, fruitier side emphasized by a creamy vanilla note, while the spicy, earthy quality of cardamom is given some serious depth by the coffee underneath it all. And “underneath” doesn’t quite capture it, because it is fairly prominent—it just has a way of accentuating other parts of the beer, as well. That coffee has the same kind of weirdly floral-metallic quality that espresso often does, without the acrid quality it often has. It doesn’t feel like an overtly natural set of pairings, but it works well. It works through a progression of citrusy/fruity, floral/metallic, woody/spicy, and coffee/roasty notes, switching to smooth vanilla and then finishing with a moderately bitter, roasty quality. And, shockingly, basically no booze detected until it’s had a chance to wash out and the aftertaste crops up with just a bit of vaporous alcohol feel. Really, though, the cardamom is definitely what jumps out at you the most. Very interesting.

Mouthfeel (4.75): Unbelievably smooth. This comes in with a slightly boozy, acidic, roasty bitters, making it feel somewhat light at first, that gives way to a medium-full body. It feels smooth and creamy, but not syrupy, before giving way to a slightly boozy, carbonated tingle. That carbonation, meanwhile, is evenly distributed across the palate, offering a velvet-smooth coating that gradually turns tingly, peaking just before the wash out. Fantastic stuff.

Overall (4.25): Something Sixpoint generally does well is experimentation without sacrificing fundamentals. Whatever gripes you might have with Sixpoint as a brewery or with some of their beers, you can’t deny how well constructed and balanced this beer is from a technical standpoint. You see that in its appearance and feel, mostly. But they also took a fairly well-trodden idea (coffee imperial porter or stout), tweak it just a bit (cacao, vanilla, sure, but the cardamom is what you take away from it), and manage not to overdo it (in my opinion). The cardamom may be a little too forward for some, but I dig their adherence to concept: Turkish coffee in big beer form. And, if you ask me, it works quite well. Good work, Sixpoint! Definitely recommended to those looking for a dark sipper that isn’t too sweet or too bitter, and sits slightly (but comfortably) outside the box.

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Photo of Daveshek28
4.74/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Excellent beer. One of the best porters I've ever had. Love the coffee notes, and would never know this was over 10% without the label saying so. I really enjoyed 4 beans, but 5 beans is even better!

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Photo of MaltsOfGlory
4.62/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.75

12 oz can

Pours a little over a finger of light brown head into my can style glass. Very fluffy and pillowy, now quite creamy looking. Body is totally black, no visibility. Retention is decent, after a few minutes I still have a little bit of head left. Lacing looks like it will be good, but we’ll see about that. Overall a very nice looking beer so far.

The smell on this is incredible. Dry, roasty, bitter coffee grounds, mix with spice - cardamom is listed, which definitely here, I feel a touch of cinnamon too, but I might be making that up. It smells like a glass of Mexican coffee. Earing Slightly on the sweet side, though I don’t get too much of the cocoa listed; this beer still stays well balanced on the nose, and is definitely very dry as well. A fantastic smelling beer.

Man, the flavor on this is loaded. Spice and cocoa/sweetness take center stage, hitting simultaneously throughout the majority of the palate. Coffee is there the entire time, but lingers in the back, wonderful complexity all at once. Finishes with the spice, dry coffee, and the sweetness of the beer almost coating my mouth. This beer is hard to break down because all of the flavors really hit me the entire time, and even linger, but I think I got the gist of it. This is one of the best beers I’ve had in quite a while.

The body on the mouthfeel is a tad thin for a beer this high ABV, but it makes up a large part of that with the awesome sparkly, tingly feelings I get from the spice hitting my cheeks.

The drinkability is hilarious. This beer drinks like it’s 5% and it’s 10%

The appearance turned out pretty darn nice. The head eventually dissipated to just some film, but I got good lacing from top to bottom. A nice head to start off the pour also.

Overall this beer was pretty strait forward with the flavors it brought, but the way they attacked my palate was very impressive. Really an amazing beer.

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Photo of gshak
4.2/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a can with a best by date of October 2018, at fridge temperature into Tripel Karmeliet snifter.

A- opaque brown-black with a thin tan head. Not much lacing observed.
S - very rich aroma of espresso and a tinge of green pepper skin. Upon warming I get a but of spice...like nutmeg, cardamom etc.
T - very rich coffee Porter. Starts sweet, with aromas of fresh coffee, green pepper skin, a hit of laxtose sweetness and smoothness. Warmth brings upon the above noted spices.
M- smooth, medium-fullish on the palate, and it totally works for this beer.

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Photo of zshaft
4.46/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

pours jet black with nice head that dissipated rather quickly. nose is toffee and caramel with espresso and coffee with some booze floating around. mouthfeel is good and full. taste is up front espresso and coffee followed by Bitter coffee and coco. I get some vanilla in there traveling through the entire mouthfeel but very subtle until the end where it becomes more pronounced. bitter coffee and cinnamon or clove spices seem to finish this one out. overall this beer is an awsome porter. victory at sea is the best out there imo but this is not far behind. great coffee and spices with bitter chocholate make this a lip smacker for me. nice job by sixpoint and this is a must try for a stout or porter lover.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.42/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Wicked Weed snifter. Bottom of can says BB15OCT2018.

A- Pours a fully opaque black color with a full inch of tan head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a half sheet of sheer surface foam. Resilient lacing leaves a solid ring behind.

S- Medium-roast coffee aroma interlaced with cardamom. Pretty sweet with notes of milk chocolate and caramel. Also a bit of booze fume.

T- Great integration of coffee and spice that's so smooth for the higher ABV. The bitter coffee roast is balanced well with the vanilla sweetness.

M- Slightly creamy with medium carbonation and a fullish body.

O- Definitely the best in the series, if you can call it a series. 3beans was awesome, 4beans was a letdown and this is excellent.

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Photo of BloodSoakedAleMug
4.66/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Pours an opaque deep brown coca-cola color with a two finger beige head. Decent lacing and head retention.

Aroma: Really superb. Notes of lactose. It smells like gourmet chocolates, black pepper and fresh cappuccino.

Taste: Upfront, I get flavors of gentle milk chocolate, vanilla beans and sweet peppery tobacco. It's followed by a mildly acidic and bitter roasted coffee note. Hints of cardamom and smoky spice dance on your tongue in the background. It finishes with clean notes of alcohol and a rich fudge flavor.

Feel: Body is very light. Carbonation is low. Mouthfeel is silky overall but very thin. Thirst quenching to a degree.

Overall Comments: A boozy, silky smooth baltic porter with rich notes of spice, bittersweet coffee, chocolate and subtle notes of vanilla.

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Photo of leantom
4.53/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I think Sixpoint finally found a winner for its stout selection. I wasn't very partial to 4beans or Beast Mode, but this one's a definite keeper. Here goes:

A: Perfect. Deep, piercing black. Pours a massive, chocolatey head that leaves a complete covering of lace. Couldn't hope for better.

S: Much richer than 4beans. Smells of dark chocolate, coffee beans, vanilla, and some cardamom spice. Still a little light, at least for me, but what does come through is excellent.

T: Very rich. Lots of dark chocolate - way more powerful in the taste than in the smell. Also a nice aftertaste of coffee. No dark fruit - just pure sugary, chocolate goodness. Cardamom is also more apparent in the taste.

Edit: Dark fruit is much more noticeable as the beer warms.

F: Thick and creamy. Good.

O: First stout offering from Sixpoint that I like.

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Photo of SomethingClever
3.33/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

12 Oz can poured into a pint glass dated Best Buy October 16th 2018

A: sticky foamy khaki whitish head sets on top of a very black body.

S: Cinnamon, coffee, vanilla, and not much else

T: nice hints of cinnamon, coffee, and a little bitter

M: medium feel to slightly more full body.

O: it's not bad, but if you are hoping something great skip it. It's a solid beer but nothing spectacular.

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Photo of DavidHume
3.02/5  rDev -26.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

What a disappointment! After the sensory delight that was 4Beans, I had high expectations for 5Beans. 4Beans with cardamom? Who could say no? After drinking 5Beans, I'm afraid that I can. I poured it into a teku, where it looked perfect—a fluffy, dark khaki head, the body black, with cola edges. The smell had a hint of coffee, but a lot of unpleasant fruit. Strong notes of sour apple and pear. It reminded me of some homebrew I'd had where an English ale strain had been underpitched and fermented too warm. The taste was similarly unpleasant, as was the lingering slickness after each sip. I'm not sure what went wrong here; normally Sixpoint is very good to excellent. Not so with 5Beans, though.

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Photo of basaywhat
4.21/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz can. Pours dark brown to black in color with a medium sized beige head. The aroma is roasted malt, coffee, vanilla, and cardamom. Taste of chocolate, some earthy notes, medium bodied, smooth mouth feel.

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Photo of cjgiant
4.02/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Can BB 10/2018:
The been pours with an opaque blackness, even near the edges of the glass. At the bottom of the glass, the clarity finally can be discerned. The tan head is resilient, and provides nice lacing.

The nose has a little coffee up front, but the earthy spice note is quite prominent. Cocoa to a light chocolate note sits in the background, but the vanilla seemed to escape me early. After a few sips and a good swirl, the scents melded a little more and the vanilla snuck out.

The flavor is no surprise given the secret the nose let out - unsweetened chocolate with a nice earthy to prickly spice note being most evident. Eventually the coffee and a little bit of vanilla came through. Later in the taste, the coffee started making a push for attention by my palate. Feel is familiar to me for Sixpoint's bold dark beers - thinner than other in the style. Carbonation is light and nicely in line with what I enjoy for the style.

I seem to recall the vanilla playing a decent role in 4Beans, leading to a sweeter impression. The boldness of the spice note I am getting seems to grab the spotlight in this one, perhaps continuing an intentional trend. I think I enjoyed 4Beans slightly better than this, but not by much.

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5Beans from Sixpoint Brewery
Beer rating: 4.09 out of 5 with 417 ratings