Dismiss Notice
Extreme Beer Fest:Los Angeles

Join us December 9th in Los Angeles for the ultimate throwdown of craft beer creativity!

Learn more...
Dismiss Notice
Introducing: Project Extreme Brewing (a Dogfish Head + BeerAdvocate project)

Smoke | Surly Brewing Company

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
907 Ratings

Brewed by:
Surly Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States

Style: Baltic Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Ebony-hued, Smoke wafts out of the bottle and into your senses, borne on the wings of European traditions, wrapped in American innovation. Lager-brewed, like any true Baltic Porter, with smoked malts from Bamberg, Germany, the home of Rauchbiers, then mellowed by oak-aging. Black malt flavors mesh with notes of raisins, plums, figs and licorice with the subtle smoke on the side, for a complex and luxurious, yet silky smooth drinking experience. It's a sipper at Alc. 8.2% by VOL., but everyone knows you can't have Smoke without fire!

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-05-2007

Bros Score:
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 907 |  Reviews: 287
Photo of Doyle
5/5  rDev +22.5%

Photo of ryancl
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%

Photo of reddfrogg
3/5  rDev -26.5%

Photo of MichaelM
4.75/5  rDev +16.4%

Photo of Petcha
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of mdmusch
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of ms11781
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of yamar68
3.91/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 750 to Surly coffee mug, 2011 vintage:

Pours a near pitch black with two fingers of light brown head that lasts a few minutes before receding to a collar that produces some average lacing.

Still a shit load of smoke on the nose. Not nearly is faded as I'd imagined. A bit of dark fruit and woody character as well.

While the nose is still pretty beefy, the smoke has faded considerably on the tongue which is what I was hoping for. various brown ale qualities have surfaced to balance out the aggressive barbecue profile.

Overall, an extremely unique beer. Not my favorite beer from Surly but it definitely showcases their creative potential.

 658 characters

Photo of vandemonian
3.7/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Surly Smoke is a smoky dark beer. It's malty and smoky. There isn't much else happening here.

A: Black colour and a 5 mm head that fades. 4

S: Nice smoky smell. Duh. 4

T: Malty with some earthiness. There is also a lot of smoke in the aroma. 3.5.

M: Foamy 4

O: 3.5

 270 characters

Photo of Humulus85
4.44/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 750mL into my Darkness snifter. 2011 vintage

Pours a motor oil black, with a nice two finger dark khaki head. Decent retention with very little lacing.

Smells of deep dark malts, peat, smoke, mesquite and alcohol in that order. The smoke smell is much stronger when the beer is cold.

Taste follows the nose. Wonderful Baltic Porter flavors upfront with a hefty, but not overpowering, smokey peat notes. Layers of sweet robust malts, dark fruits, toffee, hints of cocoa and coffee. The peat malts really round things out and add a dimension that is very intriguing. Moderate amount of alcohol in the finish.

Medium to heavy in body, and honestly lighter than I had expected it to be. Smooth and creamy in texture, with balanced but slightly sweet finish. Medium to low carbonation. Surprisingly drinkable.

Overall this was a beer that grew on me as I sipped. I think I started this one out too warm and the smoke flavors were a bit much. As it warmed up it really mellowed out and everything blended together. Todd from Surly really knows what he is doing and keeps putting out style defying and expertly crafted beers. Recommended to any fan of dark, malty beers, or any BA looking to try something one-of-a-kind. Cheers!

 1,235 characters

Photo of WillRadar
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of BFro
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of zirkusaffe
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of sammo
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of surlytwinsfan
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of Sammy
4.02/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Extremely smooth and creamy mouthfeel, with a signficant and controlled smokey taste, with the porter complexty behind it.Great smoked, although not as bold tasting a baltic porter as I would expect. The beer is really a cross between the two. Smoke aroma.

 256 characters

Photo of brystmar
4.01/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Arguably my least favorite styles brewed by one of my favorite breweries. Smell tells me I won't like this beer: tons of smoke, a little roasty, more smoke. And I don't like smoked beers...

Fortunately the taste isn't smoke-forward. Mildly smokey, but tons of roast and malt are at the forefront. Thin-ish body still works given the lower carbonation. I really like this.

 372 characters

Photo of n2185
4.33/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours black with half a finger of tan head that fades into a thin ring with no lacing.

S: Lots of smoked malts up front with dark fruits like plums and raisins. There are black licorice notes as well.

T: Similar to the aroma, lots of smoked malts at first reminiscent of bacon and BBQ. There are dark fruits as well with black licorice.

M: Medium-thick body with medium carbonation, this beer is pleasantly (and relatively) light in body with enough carbonation to accentuate the smoke characters well.

O: A tasty beer overall with an odd, but tasty, mix of flavors and aromas. Really enjoyable and super smokey.

 619 characters

Photo of Hopstout
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of zaphodchak
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thin light brown head. Opaque dark brown body.

Deep, smoky nose with a bit of soy sauce. Kinda gouda-ish, a bit Swiss.

Woody and a tad bitter with the same soy from the nose, rich, and some of the dry cheese (is that a thing?) character.

Thinnish mouthfeel but not bad.

Nice smokey baltic porter, big flavor and powerful body.

 330 characters

Photo of eawolff99
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of duceswild
3.5/5  rDev -14.2%

Photo of CarolinaKev
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of josephwa
4.75/5  rDev +16.4%

Photo of clutchbeyers
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%

Smoke from Surly Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.08 out of 5 with 907 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.