Wolaver's Alta Gracia Coffee Porter
Otter Creek Brewing

Wolaver's Alta Gracia Coffee PorterWolaver's Alta Gracia Coffee Porter
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Style:
American Porter
ABV:
5%
Score:
89
Avg:
3.97 | pDev: 12.34%
Reviews:
254
Ratings:
781
From:
Otter Creek Brewing
 
Vermont, United States
Avail:
Retired (no longer brewed)
Wants
  33
Gots
  108
SCORE
89
Very Good
Wolaver's Alta Gracia Coffee PorterWolaver's Alta Gracia Coffee Porter
Notes: Unfiltered and unpasteurized porter brewed with Vermont grown organic coffee and aged on organic vanilla beans.
Reviews: 254 | Ratings: 781 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by jondeelee:
Photo of jondeelee
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Alta Gracia Coffee Porter opens to a coffee-heavy nose, with black coffee and espresso grounds mixing nicely with ash and tobacco, and all of this atop a layer of heavy coffee cream, molasses, and caramel. The aromas are big and bold here, at least at first, resembling in potency an Imperial Stout aged on coffee grounds. The aromas do fade after a few seconds, reducing from medium-heavy strength to medium-light, but remain finely nuanced. As the aromas fade, a layer of toast crust and brown breads emerges, as well as notes of wet hay. Tinges of pine and grapefruit from the hops add bitterness. As a whole, the initial aromas are excellent, but fade quickly, and these lesser later aromas seem somewhat watery and weak, and overly reliant on coffee for body, as if the removal of the coffee would reveal a rather average porter.

On the tongue, the beer is immediately full of coffee, with strong black coffee, coffee grounds, espresso beans, and light ash washing across the tongue. The coffee notes are strong enough that other flavors are initially difficult to locate, and only after a few seconds do bits of caramel, vanilla, molasses, brown sugar, and cream come forth—but these are very light, as if a single teaspoon of flavored coffee creamer had been mixed into a very large cup of over-strong coffee. In subsequent sips, however, the coffee flavors actually lose potency, and instead the beer features a balance between breads, coffees, and sugars that is more tolerable, with nice notes of vanilla and caramel mixing with dark breads, toast crust, and espresso. The coffee notes, however, are those of coffee that has been ground and exposed to open air for a while, reducing their flavor and potency. Hops are almost nonexistent, providing mainly a bitter piney background fuzz. The flavors are still somewhat weak and watery, but are nicely flavorful. The aftertaste is a continuation of the coffee and bread notes, with fading sugars, and lingers on the tongue for a short while. Mouthfeel is medium-light to medium, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is decent fare, but marked at first by an overly-heavy reliance on coffee notes, and afterwards, by a watery mouthfeel and slightly weak flavors. The flavors themselves are fairly nicely balanced, but the beer as a whole seems like it needed to be better balanced from start to finish, with more oomph put in to maintain flavors over time, and a few more sugars to increase the molasses and caramel notes. The coffee notes could have also been more fresh, like the lovely oily notes that come from beans fresh out of the roaster. In all, some very nice points here, but nothing extremely eye-opening or catchy.

 2,692 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of DoctorDog
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of tylerprince
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of KevinDanger23
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%

Photo of DZales1000
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%

Photo of OzmanBey
5/5  rDev +25.9%

Photo of steelslug92
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

Photo of cbutova
3.65/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours out black but some light shines through the edges. A fairly creamy two finger head builds up but dies down fairly quickly to a thick cloud atop the beer. Leaves a small bit of lacing.

S- Fairly faint. Coffee hints come through the most. Some brown sugar and caramel roast malts are behind the coffee. Definitely needs some strength because I can hardly pick it up.

T- Pure coffee, wow. Some roasty malt notes and caramel malt in the background but mostly pure coffee. The coffee taste is not as good as Peche Mortel or Breakfast stout but it is one of the strongest ones there is. There is some bitterness from the coffee.

MF- Fairly creamy but the body is pretty light, needs some more thickness for the flavors that the beer contains. The carbonation is moderate and appropriate. A coat of coffee stays on the palate. No alcohol effects.

DB- Good taste, decent everything else. The price is good as with most Wolaver's stuff. No huge off flavors but the coffee gets to be too strong for me after a bit, but it is a coffee porter. Would like to try it again on tap sometime.

 1,088 characters

Photo of Dave1999
4.08/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black in colour with a red tint almost no head.

Smells of coffee and sweet malts.

Tastes of coffee and vanilla as you would expect. Very well done and tasty.

Feels smooth maybe just a tiny bit over carbonated but does not spoil the beer.

Overall a very good beer.

 273 characters

Photo of PA-Michigander
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

Photo of jsdunlop
4.6/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 ouncer poured into a Samuel Smith pint glass.

Nice pitch black color, tan 1 1/2 finger head. Strong aroma of coffee, dark chocolate, roasted malts and slight vanilla undertones. This porter tastes just as great as it smells. My gustatory receptors were blasted up front with freshly brewed coffee, chocolate and a perfectly balanced residual sweetness with a minor hop bitterness to finish it off. Matched with the minimal carbonation and moderate body, this porter is quite possibly one of the best I have tasted yet! Thank you Otter Creek Brewing Company!

 561 characters

Photo of Mantooth
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of rebcwood
3.35/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.75

Looks very dark and deep but closer look shows a solid caramel color.

Coffee smell is very bold. Smell caramel as well.

Bitter starts the intense coffee tastes. Tastes exactly as it smells. Finishes with a smooth caramel coating.

Not very impressed but I will chalk it up to me being a novice.

 298 characters

Photo of Dreamer
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

Photo of gcamparone
3.95/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Samuel adams pint glass. Purchased in Wakefield, Rhode Island

A- Pours a deep brown, nearly opaque body with mahogany highlights and a thinnish mocha head that reduces quickly and leaves little lacing. Nice head color.

S- Fresh ground coffee, dark chocolate, vanilla, and an interesting grassy note in the background.

T- Coffee beans, toffee, with a slight roastyness on the finish. It's an easy drinker.

M- Slightly watery for a porter. Medium carbonation.

Overall quite an enjoyable brew. It's a smooth drinker that demands sip after sip and doesn't really fill you up. I'd buy it again

 629 characters

Photo of JArt
3.6/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Photo of sisuspeed
3.92/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 10/22/09. Stored at cellar temperature.

Poured this into a "Drink Vermont Beer" pint glass. The color of the body is dark brown, almost black, with a small white head that eventually fades away.

Lots of coffee on the nose. Very roasty, almost burnt. A little on the metallic side. Some of the vanilla comes through as well. I thought this might get overshadowed by the coffee, but it manages to come through nicely. Roasted malts.

Good coffee flavor. Not as strong as some coffee brews I've had, but there's no mistaking that there is coffee in here. Roasted malts and some of the vanilla come through next. The vanilla is a great addition to this beer and helps to smooth out some of the acidity and bitterness from the coffee. There is also a faint bit of dark chocolate in the background as well. Unfortunately, the metallic taste/aroma still lingers, but seems to be fading somewhat as the beer warms.

Mouthfeel is ok. The carbonation is a little more prickly than I would like and the body could be a little thicker, but overall its not too bad.

Drinkability is good. I could see myself having more than one of these in a sitting if I were in the mood for coffee and beer.

Overall, I'm liking this new addition to the Wolaver's line. They've managed to execute a tasty coffee porter and have probably produced the best organic beer I have ever had. I think if they could beef up the body a little bit and cut back on the carbonation and metallic flavors, then they would have a stellar brew on their hands. Either way, I'm glad I got to try this.

 1,568 characters

Photo of NHSTEVE
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of markdrinksbeer
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of ncstateplaya
3.25/5  rDev -18.1%

Photo of Oakenator
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of xbrettfavrex
4.75/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of stewfnrocker
4.17/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured this from the bottle to a pint glass, it pours a dark brown almost black look with a visible tan head. The smell is of coffee, vanilla and roasted malts. When I took that first sip and swirled it in my mouth I got a good taste of coffee, vanilla bean, a little bit of a roastiness. The mouth feel is of a full body porter and a bit of overpowering sweetness, but I probably shouldn’t have eaten this with dinner, but with dessert. There is no hint of alcohol when drinking and the taste is very balanced. My only complaint would be it might be a little to on the sweet side. I recommend if drinking, either drink it alone or with some dessert.

 652 characters

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2/5  rDev -49.6%

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4/5  rDev +0.8%

Wolaver's Alta Gracia Coffee Porter from Otter Creek Brewing
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 781 ratings