Smoke From The Oak (Rum Barrel Aged) | Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

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Smoke From The Oak (Rum Barrel Aged)Smoke From The Oak (Rum Barrel Aged)
Very Good
104 Ratings
Smoke From The Oak (Rum Barrel Aged)Smoke From The Oak (Rum Barrel Aged)

Brewed by:
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
New York, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by mcallister on 05-25-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 104 |  Reviews: 71
Photo of thegerm87
1.5/5  rDev -60.5%

Photo of jlenik
2/5  rDev -47.4%

Photo of leschkie
2.5/5  rDev -34.2%

Photo of LilBeerDoctor
2.9/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle, batch 2. Pours black with no real head. Aroma of sweet rum, alcohol, and a roasted malt background. Flavor of rum and slight roast, but for what it is, it's somewhat mellow and drinkable. Overall it was ok but quite dominated by the rum with hardly any of the background porter coming through. Kinda bland but not much complexity. I just wasn't into this.
6/3/6/3/13 (3.1/5)

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Photo of brentk56
2.99/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Batch 2

Appearance: Another gushing disaster from this series and as I saw some ugly sediment at the top of the bottle I knew it would be a problem; by the time the gushing was over, there was very little head to the beer

Smell: To its credit, it smells like rum

Taste: Unlike the aroma, the beer is sour from the get go, without any real hint of rum, just a vinegary, green apple mess

Mouthfeel: Medium body with buoyant carbonation

Overall: Another infected bottle from the series; I can see why it has been retired

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Photo of ygtbsm94
3/5  rDev -21.1%

Photo of markasparov
3/5  rDev -21.1%

Photo of thatguy314
3.01/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Having had the very excellent Smoke from the Oak Bourbon Barrel I was expecting a lot from this and was honestly, sorely disappointed. It poured rich black and creamy, much thicker than the regular smoked porter which I poured next to it. Its nose was smokey, sweet and complex, which was a good sign. However, the sweet rum character completely overpoured the dark, astringent character of the porter when I drank it. I couldn't finish my whole glass. The rum flavor was just too overpowering (you might think differently if you are a rum person, but I am not). Oak aging did provide it with an excellent mouthfeel. Scott obviously knows how to make a good oak-aged beer. I think rum-barrel was an interesting experiment to try (and one I was very interested in tasting), I just don't think the results are my thing at all.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.03/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cap. Lawrence- Smoke from the Oak (Rum)

I forgot who sent this to me, I apologize! Once I figure it out I'll edit the review!

A- Deep reddish black with a flat appearance and a small foamy head. No lacing.
S- Very sweet rum aroma, a touch of charcoal, and the mildest of cocoa.
T- Again sweet charcoal rum flavor hits you. Light chocolate cocoa powder body with a dash of vanilla extract.
M- Very sweet with a mild body and an even sweeter slight alc. touched finish.

Overall- Bland. A weak, smooth, rum with a touch of cocoa. Thats all I'm getting!? I was expecting much more.

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Photo of beagle826
3.1/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Had this one cellered for about 2.5 years. Cracked it open and was surprised that it smelled a bit sour. Very dark, viscous looking pour. Taste was a bit sweet, oak didn't come through as much as I expected. Ultimately, a little bit disappointing. Seemed like there was too many conflicting flavors going on at once.

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Photo of HimerMan
3.18/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle, Batch 1. Poured into an English nonic glass.

Opened with way too much carbonation, and foamed up for a few minutes before I could pour it. (This was very consistent with the Heavyweight 25.4oz bottles.) For some reason I have this problem often with these bottles, biggest one that comes to mind is Heavyweight's Ste've.

Pours a dark brown/black with a head that (once settled) was about half a finger. A bit murky, and did leave a fair amount of residue after the first glass.

Great smell - definite rum notes, with a woody/smoke that is impossible to miss. The downside to this sweet smelling porter is the pure/raw alcohol scent that is unpleasant. Once you starting drinking it, the alcohol burn flavor/feeling does subside - however, it was a bit harsh at the open.

Taste - This is a very sweet beer, that immediately has a soaked rum raisin taste with a malty/oaky/smoke aftertaste. There is a lot going on with this beer, perhaps too much.

Overall this is definitely worth a try; especially for those who enjoy the sweeter porters and/or dessert beers. This would probably be suited for after a BBQ or with something a bit salty. Given its price - I would suggesting splitting a bottle with someone interested in the style.

On an aging note - this may be a great candidate to age for a year or so to see what happens with the extreme carbonation and see if some more of the flavors blend better. As for now, the drinkability is harsh - but may have a positive bias with some year(s) under its belt.


 1,530 characters

Photo of IrishColonial
3.25/5  rDev -14.5%

Photo of DaveAnderson
3.25/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Batch 2, which means this has been in the bottle for at least 4 years.

A standard pour into a Duvel glass produces a creamy head that looks like a milk chocolate mousse. After reading some other reviews of this batch, I was ready for a gusher, but I just got a properly-carbonated, quite attractive beer in my glass. The beer itself is dark and hazy.

Wow. I was not expecting this to smell sour. I'm suddenly very excited about this beer. I normally don't find rum very interesting, so I expected this to be less interesting than, say, something aged in bourbon barrels. This smells like a chocolatey oude bruin. It also reminds me of a chocolate cherry cordial. The rum -- and the oak for that matter -- is very subtle.

Unfortunately, the flavor of this beer simply does not live up to the smell. I would have preferred either a lot more sourness, or none at all. There are two beers in this glass, and they are fighting each other for my attention. I'm starting to wonder if this was supposed to be sour at all. Maybe it's just infected.

It is extremely difficult to rate the mouthfeel on this beer, because I can't figure out what it is supposed to be.

In the end, I found myself quite disappointed. To quote Emperor Joseph II from Amadeus, it had "too many notes".

 1,273 characters

Photo of BeerThursdays
3.25/5  rDev -14.5%

Photo of emerge077
3.35/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks Ben for sharing this one, review from written notes.
Bottle stored in temperature-controlled, zero light conditions. Unfortunate gusher due to botham's hasty maneuvers. Served in a goblet.

Brownish black, reddish glint in the meniscus of the glass. A constant presence of sturdy tan foam, due to the furious carbonation levels. Head eventually breaks on the surface, no lacing.

Tart, indistinct barrel notes with perceptible alcohol in the aroma.
Lightly tart and tannic. No rum character. It comes across as a generic barrel aged beer, oaky and thin with a marked acidity. Not very cohesive or nuanced, it's faded into something of a muddy mess (maybe it always was, based on some early reviews). Overall its not terrible, but nothing worth seeking out really, unless a new batch is released and there are positive reports.

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Photo of rajendra82
3.38/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I received this 750 ml. bomber from Eyedrinkale as part of the BIF Race 2008. The warning about a gusher in one of the previous reviews was on my mind as I opened the bomber, and sure enough quick hand work was needed to prevent a full eruption onto the desk. Hell as I poured the beer and set the bomber down, foam kept building up and filled all of the headspace and started oozing out. That's a carbon footprint Al Gore surely would not approve of. The beer itself looked very black in the tulip, and the foam atop it died down to some serious lacing that formed legs. The smell was oak and a lot of it. I am a fan of barrel aging in general, but the woodiness was a bit overdone here. The oak tannins made this tasted a lot like a dark Saison than a Porter. There was a little bit of chocolate in the background. I could not taste much of a rum character, and if smoke was not mentioned on the label, I would have not noticed the absence of it. The beer felt thick and soothing in the mouth, and although not mentioned, the belly warming indicated that this was quite a potent brew. That being said, the complicated aging process seems to have detracted rather than added to this Porter. I'd like a lot more smoke please.

 1,225 characters

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.46/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch 2; Sampled November 2008
Pretty darn well carbonated, a careful pour into my large Tripel Karmeliet tulip rises a full-two fingers above the rim of my glass, for a total of seven-fingers of height. The head is a nicely browned, dark tan color. The beer is a dark, concentrated amber / brown that approaches black in color and the beer is pretty opaque as not a hint of light passes through it when held up to the light. The aroma smells of roasted grain, a weird, fruity rum-like note (with a bit of plum in there) and perhaps a touch of funk (I sure hope not though as I had enough of the funk in batch 1). The aroma is significantly burnt, at times smelling like burnt plums, burnt whole grain toast and there is also a significant, though at first not noticed, phenolic smoke character to this beer. The smoke can come off as a burnt vegetal note at times, but does add a savory, almost salty character to the finish of the nose. A touch of spicy alcohol also seems to come from the Rum barrel, though the barrel influence in the aroma is somewhat subtle.

Lightly sweet, savory, a bit hot and this finishes with a smoky phenolic note that sort of turns into a vegetal & plastic like flavor in the long, lingering finish. The upfront sweetness in this seems contributed by rum (both the alcohol and a touch of fruitiness), this beer quickly dries out though as the beer flows across the tongue. This has a nice roast character to it with notes of burnt cocoa, a touch of burnt acidity, a roasted nut note, a chalky burnt grain husk note and a burnt graininess. This is fairly light bodied and, if not for the hot alcohol and phenolics, this would be down right quaffable. Other notes of tart plum / prune, a touch of white pepper, a touch of brown sugar, fig and perhaps just a hint of cola.

As the beer warms up it becomes a lot more drinkable and balance, it loses a bunch of the harsh alcohol and roast notes and just becomes a bit more enjoyable. An interesting beer, it still doesn't quite work for me, but is much better than batch 1. I am a bit surprised how tame the Rum character is, with a 12 year old Rum, I would expect a lot of rich Rum character, but that is just not the case.

Batch 1, Sampled December 2007
total: 2.7
A definite gusher, both the bottle and my tulip glass gush. The head easily fills up the five fingers of space in my tulip glass. It is a dusty, cocoa tinged, brown-tan color and sits atop a basically black colored brew. Funky sour aromatic notes mix in with the cocoa / roast malt character typical of a Porter. The funky notes lean towards an ample fruit character reminiscent of tart plums, green apples and grapes (I think the rum comes in to play here too). The funk produces aromas of moldy leather, touches of over-ripe cheese, musty earth and in combination with barrel notes produce wood-like aromas and spicy oak. The porter contributes notes of dusty cocoa, a dry toasted malt notes, browned biscuits and lightly burnt soda crackers. The aroma is all over the place; strangely I have a hard time picking out either notes of rum or of smoked malt.

The beer has calmed down considerably since pouring it, but it still is a bit frothy as it hits my tongue. Despite being forewarned by the aroma, the beer is a shocking mix of astringent oak and acidic sourness. A persistent undercurrent of moldy, over-ripe cheese lingers throughout the flavor profile. Flavors of moldy cotton and decaying loam intersperse with oak derived notes of spice and tannic wood. The smoke is a bit more noticeable in the flavor, but somehow it only seems to accentuate the harsh phenolics (leaning towards burnt plastic), rather than producing that appetizing smoke infusion I love from Rauchmalz. Quite tart, this seems to accentuate some flavors of tart plums, star-fruit and even something that reminds me of durian.

I usually like really funky beers and this one is super complex, but this one is just jarring; the oak character is too harsh and the funkiness, especially when paired with the sharp roast malt notes just doesn't work here. Hopefully the next batch will resist the wild-wee-beasts as I would really like to try a clean beer aged in a Rum-barrel.

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Photo of joepais
3.48/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks go out to Kempleton for his bottle
I almost didn't post a review, the bottle foamed a little when opening but the aroma of Brett was strong. I didn't know if it was infected on purpose or not? It was from batch 2

The tulip looked glass was filled with two fingers worth of tan head on a black body. Again the Brett was strong I got a little rum and one other person got some smoke as it warmed.

A funky porter for sure with a splash of rum was how it tasted to me the body was medium with good carbonation for a porter.

I'll give it an average score on the drinkability only because I don't know if the infection was on purpose. I may change it later

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Photo of BGsWo22
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of duceswild
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of ubufan2112
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of Bierman9
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Opted to try this due to the EBF. Served from a 750ml bottle.

Pours a deep, dark, opaque brown. Light is unable to penetrate the dense liquid. Head is minimal, mainly some hard-pour induced tan bubbles clinging to the edges. No lace to speak of whatsoever. Rum is the distinct component of the aroma, hitting the nostrils right off the bat. The bier itself is rather smooth, but a touch on the thinner side of medium.

Flavor leans to sweetness at the start, with a bit of dark fruit and even some intimations of chocolate. I find the smoke to be extremely subtle here (though Alewife took one small sip and noticed it right off). I'm not really finding this too Porterish at all. It's hitting me more like a Strong Belgian Dark Ale, honestly. Has some vinous qualities as well, with a smidge of spiciness mixing in with the rummy aspects. Overall? Not bad; not bad at all, but a bit of a letdown, after all the raving I had heard about Capt Lawrence biers.


look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | drink: 3.5


 1,043 characters

Photo of imperialking
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of mdfb79
3.51/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

From 7/24/10 notes. Batch 2.

a - Pours a dark brown color with no head or carbonation.

s - Smells of cherries, dark fruit, oak, and rum of course. Unfortunately not a big fan of the smell of rum, so that hurt it for me.

t - Tastes of alcohol, oak, dark fruit, and a little bit of smoke.

m - Light body and low carbonation. Very easy to drink.

d - Personally I enjoyed the SFTO wine much more. Would not seek out this variation of it.

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Smoke From The Oak (Rum Barrel Aged) from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.8 out of 5 with 104 ratings