Smoke | Surly Brewing Company

286 Reviews
no score
Send samples

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

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 286 | Ratings: 896
Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.44/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I got this brew in a trade with tytoanderso, Thanks Tyler!

22oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

L - black brew with a tan head that thinned out completely after a few minutes.
S - rich, smokey aroma with a hint of vanilla bean.
T - delicious smokey tasting brew, there is a slight vanilla extract taste upfront.
F - full bodied with mild carbonation.
D - a pleasure to drink.

 385 characters

Photo of CrellMoset
4.44/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. silver-waxed bottle courtesy of surlytwinsfan - thanks! Poured in to a tulip on Christmas Eve.

Appearance: Pours a raw umber, slick but viscous, transparent at the ruby-hued periphery at first but quickly turning opaque as the glass fills. The color is nice, a little nicer than the head, which rises to about a finger in height, fawn khaki, soapy and bubbly, and stays around for a spell but not as long as I'd like, fading in time to a dollop or two of surface lace and a thin, partial foamy collar.

Aroma: Sweet, earthy, and smoky - a fantastic combination. First, the malts here are just what you want from a Baltic Porter - strong toffee, blackstrap molasses, and caramel mingle with milk chocolate, toast, and springy half roast coffee, which itself is almost lactic-esque sweet at points, milky and creamy. The earth is a little dirty, but never astringent or harsh, and it transitions beautifully in to the smoky note, which is one of the most balanced smoky presences I've ever gotten out of a beer (and keep in mind I am generally not a fan of smoke beers, Alaskan's Smoked Porter notwithstanding). The peaty, beechwood notes are just beautifully integrated, amplifying everything and detracting from nothing. The finish even suggested freshly muddled spearmint, which mingles beautifully with the milk chocolate notes (York peppermint patties anyone?). An aroma I just can't get enough of.

Taste: Complexities abound - where to begin with this one? Malts (obviously, and entirely unsurprisingly) dominate, ranging from sweet, saccharine caramel to dirty, earthy coffee, and everything in between. Brown sugar and molasses, licorice, and milk sugars mingle with bittersweet cocoa and full city coffee. Nothing astringent here, and everything's actually rather smooth, silky (though it's definitely on the sweet end of things). The smoke isn't the star of the show here, and that's what makes this beer so wonderful - it's beautifully balanced, complimenting the dark fruits and spicy toasty notes so nicely. What a wonderful and understated flavor profile.

Mouthfeel: This beer's weakest aspect, but it's still pretty solid, and does improve as the experience goes on. It's pretty moderately bodied, perhaps a little on the thick side, though that's perfectly to be expected with the amount of residual sweetness mentioned before. The amount of carbonation coupled with the thickness of the body, however, makes for a slightly erratic, uneven mouthfeel at first (until the carbonation dies down). Open this one right out of the fridge and give it a while to cool while the carbonation dies down - it hits a sweet spot (and I mean a borderline 5.0 sweetspot, if only it had been there the whole time, oy!) where there's enough carbonation to keep the sweetness from becoming cloying but little enough that it's not overeffervescent about thirty minutes in.

Drinkability: What an amazing and pleasant surprise! An evening that started with one disappointment (Tuverbol) is capped by one fantastic brew, and I couldn't be more thrilled. This beer is just so balanced, so flavorful, and - all things told, at 8.2% - so drinkable (not to say it's not there - I'm certainly feeling it!). Nonetheless, I want more of this, and could definitely keep coming back for more of this crisp, flavorful, balanced brew. Also, stick this in barrels and I'd marry it. Like, tomorrow.

 3,391 characters

Photo of iLovehops23
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

great sipper with deep roasted flavors. with the name "Smoke" i was thimking this was gonna have a smokey flavor like smoked salmon ect.. but the roasted malt flavors came across with hints of sweet chocolate and coffees, very drinkable, very well blanced. im starting to become very fond of surly brewing.

smoke is a beer i whould love to grab three or four bottels and let them age a bit and see what happens, also this make a great beer to add to my special occ stach.

 472 characters

Photo of mdawson
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap @ brewery pour room.

A - Black; difficult to judge clarity in low light. Thin beige head w/ subpar staying power.

S- Very well-integrated nose of roast malt and campfire woodsmoke. Sweet malt, Underlying spice and earth from hops.

T - Tar, espresso ristretto, more woodsmoke giving way to a mouth-filling malt middle, hops and roast malt in the finish. Lingering smoke, never overstated. The alcohol is well hidden.

M - Full, thick; malt covers the astringency of the smoked and roasted grains. Moderate CO2.

D - The Rauchmalz, if that's what they used, is well balanced with the other ingredients. This isn't a subtle beer, but it is quite harmonious ... and drinkable.

 683 characters

Photo of dgugliuzza
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage poured from bottle into an oversized snifter

Ashy black pour with about a quarter inch of dark tan head. Thin film of retention remains around the rim of the glass.

Big campfire like aroma. Lots of smoke and woody aromas. Roasted malt also mixes in with the smoked malt. Chocolate and bacon also detected. A fantastic combination that lends sweetness and cured meat like smells.

Just as the nose indicated. The beer's name is surely not misleading. Campfire smoke and roasted malts backed by a pleasant chocolate sweetness. More rauch and bacon flavors at the back end. The oak subtly shines through. Fantastic blend of flavors.

Medium bodied mouthfeel that's velvety smooth. Creamy and full on the palate. Low carbonation. Though very drinkabkle, you need to be in the mood for a smoke beer such as this.

Hands down this is the best rauchbier I've tried. The flavors are flawlessly integrated. Smoke, roast, chocolate, bacon and oak. I couldn't think of a better beer with which to sit around the campfire on a cool fall evening.

 1,051 characters

Photo of gford217
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Briab fir this bottle.

Pours much darker than i was expecting, almost completely black with chocolate brown showing through the edges. The head is short lived and recedes to a tiny collar with no lacing.

Aroma is dominated by heavily smoked chocolate malts with some caramel and cocoa as well. There is a little bit of spent espresso grounds in the background.

Taste is sweeter with chocolate and caramel up front before the wave of smoked wood starts to take over. The finish is dry, woody and all about the smoke.

I've always like a good smoked beer so this one hit the spot for me. Lots of smoky character but still very drinkable. Good stuff.

 664 characters

Photo of darklordlager
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

On tap at Darkness Day 2009 (finally getting notes onto BA)

A: Dark brown, small layer of dark tan head that struggles to remain afloat.

S: Smoked, dark chocolate with some underlying caramel. Chocolate covered fruit.

T: Nice hearty sweetness hits the lips, before your mouth is ambushed by a tornado of smoke--worthy of a team of small town firefighters. Nice bready sweetness, chocolate cake.

M: Nailed the carbonation on this one. A thick liquid with just enough carbonation to make things slide smoothly. Think airport conveyor belt when you're too tried to walk.

D: Given the heartiness and flavour present in this brew, it is great. Not even sure of the ABV.

 672 characters

Photo of SummitVA
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark brown pour that lightens to a deep ruby around the edges of the glass. Soft carbonation and 1/2" head that falls away quickly.

S - Smoke of course foremost, although this is hardly overbearing. More bacon than the medicinal character that can come over a hugely smoked beer. Some fruitiness there beneath, along with oak.

T - Smoke washes over the palate and then opens to dark fruit character (plum, dates), light roast along with a trace of bitter dark chocolate and vanilla. Barrel character (a rougher woodiness in addition to vanillin) is present, but not overpowering. Smoke lingers beautifully in the finish, giving a nice crispness to the beer.

M - Medium bodied. Goes down extraordinarily smooth. The mouthfeel of Surly's bigger brews is invariably perfect. This is no exception.

O - Another fantastic beer from Surly. I've had it a few times on draft and in bottles, and this bottle (from the first 2010 bottling in March) really stood out. Wish I had some more. Cheers to Todd and Omar,

 1,013 characters

Photo of Kadonny
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this bottle from NuBrewm as an extra from one of our many trades. Thanks Ted, you rock! I believe this to be the 2010 version. Poured into my Sly Fox lager glass.

A: A dark dark brown color that is just shy of black. Small light brown head that covers the top of the beer, barely. Lacing is decent but does not last.

S: Dark roasted malts with some heavy smoke smells. Charred wood, chocolate and some slight earth hops.

T: The smoke really pops on the flavor. Huge roasted malt flavor couples with the smokey wood charred flavors. Some nice chocolate mixes in to allow some sweetness with some sweet dark fruits. Finish turns back to the smoke with some earthy hop notes. Very very smooth and integrated. The six month cellar time made this a real nice beer.

M: smooth, coating but no alcohol. Amazing. Not sweet but not bitter. Fust perfect.

O: what a tremendous smokey beer that has just the right amount of smokey flavor. Awesome.

I did not go into this expecting Smoke to be a real enjoyable beer since I'm not a huge smoke guy. I left wanting more bottles. In my opinion just about the perfect smoked beer. Surly amazes me again. I want to move to MN just for Surly. You guys rock.

 1,200 characters

Photo of trxxpaxxs
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to LaCourisere for this bottle. 2011 Vintage.

A: This beer pours a deep dark brown, pretty much black. There is about one and one half fingers of grey-ish brown head. It settles nicely over time and leaves a lasting right around the top of the beer. There is only minimal lacing as it drinks.

S: This beer smells like BACON!!! W00t!!! Love it. I get huge smoke, huge meat, some nice dark malts, some saltiness, and a bit of stone fruit. It's fantastic. (If you like bacon.)

T: Yup. Exactly as it smells. The meaty notes are actually dialed back from what I picked up in the nose. It's a fantastic baltic porter. There is more smoke than stone fruit, but the name of the beer is "Smoke" for Peat sake. I'm loving it.

M: Full bodied beer. The flavors coat the palate, but disappear over time. Nothing lingers for longer than you would want. It's a surprisingly easy drinking brew.

O: This is a seriously good baltic porter. If you love smoky beers and/or you love bacon, this beer is for you. I'm sincerely impressed. I don't remember it being this bacon-y the last time I had it. I'll have to crack a 2010 bottle to see how it's changed.

 1,152 characters

Photo of ahalloin
4.41/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this little gem on tap at Cafe Twenty-eight in Minneapolis. If you are looking for Surly beer on tap, this is the place to go, as one of the Surly brewmasters is part owner. When I was there they had Furious, Smoke and Darkness on tap!

Absolutely pitch black pour with no light getting through at all. A healthy light tan head of about half a finger width came with the pour.

The aroma was not real intense but did have a smoky and salty quality about it.

The flavor was big and unforgiving! A big molasses nose gave way to a smoky, dry, and slightly hopped finish. There is a slight hint of smoked meat in there, sort of like smoked ham. Wide mouthfeel seems to pulverize every tastebud in the mouth.

A Beautiful beer!

 730 characters

Photo of CosmoHopHead
4.39/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: pours black with a small light brown head and minimal lacing

S: good combo of roasted malts and chocolate with hints of coffee, fruits, nuts. all mixed with a very nice touch of smokiness

T: a bit sweet to start but then comes the mixture of dark chocolate covered fruits, coffee, oak, toasted nuts and roasted malts. faint hint of hops on the back end all mixed very well with a nice smokey touch.

M: smooth and creamy with a tame body and medium to high carbonation.

D: at 8.2% abv is very drinkable. very hard to notice and alcohol as you drink it. warms the throat a bit no burn. the sweetness is there but balanced very nice with the smoke

Overall, yet another very good beer from Surly. Very glad I got to try this one. Would recommend to all.

 759 characters

Photo of sisuspeed
4.39/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into wide tulip glass. Surly Smoke is extremely dark in color with a red berry tint around the edges. No head, no lacing, just very dark with a red tinge.

The aroma consists of a light smokiness mixed with dark fruits, figs and raisins. Some alcohol rises up from the glass as well. Swirling reveals more fruit, blackberries, bits of cherry and a touch of woodiness. More fruit and less smoke than I would have imaged, but very enjoyable and well done.

Smokey, roasted malts soaked in oaky vanilla roll across the tongue, followed by smoked meatiness, cherries and raisins. The oak aging comes through quite nicely. Again, light smoke, fruits, roasty malts, a touch of anise and silky vanilla.

This beer looks pretty thick, but the mouthfeel is surprisingly light for the style. Warming alcohol mixes with light, tiny, carbonation.

Drinkability is good, especially for a smoked beer. Lots of flavor, but not too much smoke. The ABV is somewhat noticeable, but my hand kept going back to the glass constantly. This bomber was shared with others, but I'm pretty sure I drank more than half of it. Very enjoyable.

Overall, this is another awesome beer from Surly. It seems that every thing they brew rocks pretty hard. I think some people might be looking for more smoke flavor in this beer, but the complexity and smoothness that the brewers bought to this offering will make most people forget any complaints they may have had. Awesome job Surly! I'm eagerly awaiting the release of Four.

 1,499 characters

Photo of billab914
4.39/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2009 vintage poured from a 750ml bottle into my Surly nonic pint glass. it poured black in color with a small and fizzy tan head to it. The head disappeared after a minute or so though.

The aroma shows a lot of roasted malt and dark chocolate to it. The smoke is definitely there, but more subtle then I expected. It has a bit of a roasted coffee bitterness to it and the dark, milky chocolate gives it some nice sweetness as well.

The taste really shows a lot of chocolate to it as well. It starts out with some darker chocolate, but turns more towards some sweeter milk chocolate towards the finish. The roasted malt and coffee bitterness shows up front but is a little more reserved in the finish. The smoke does comes through though. The smoke shows the most in the finish and lingers with the chocolate. Very flavorful beer overall.

The mouthfeel is a little above medium bodied and carbonation is on the lower side. Drinkability is very good, it had some great bold flavors to it but yet remained very smooth and drinkable. The chocolate was especially nice. The smoke was good but was probably more intense fresher. Very good beer overall.

 1,150 characters

Photo of pourmeadrink
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The first sniffs out of the glass are heavy with smoke. You get that burning wood aroma, like being around a meat smoker. The color was a dark brown that was moderately translucent. A thin tan head capped this beer off and dissipated quickly.

I have never really found a smoked beer that I am hog-wild over. Mostly, I think they taste like liquid Slim Jim's. I found this bottle at a store on clearance and knew well enough to just buy it without asking. I was pleasantly surprised.

The first taste is filled with that woody smoke from the aroma. As it washes over the pallet, the more complex flavors begin to shine. First was that meaty jerky flavor. Next came a warm boozy wooden taste. As it warmed and I continued to drink, the nuance began to become more noticeable. The bottle claims a fig, raisin and plum taste. They weren't kidding. There was a very earthy date and fig taste with the mild sweetness of raisins, mostly on the finish.

I was happy with this beer, though it is one I only wanted a bit of and not often. I would love to see this in smaller bottles so that I didn't feel like I wasted so much of something that had such a complex tone to it, overall. It was sippable, not drinkable. Smoke was a beer I will keep an eye out for in the future. As for the rest of the bottle? It just got used to make some beef jerky. Yep, I said it. Stay tuned for that post next week. Never let a good beer go to waste.

 1,427 characters

Photo of angrybabboon
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cheers to Goblinmunkey7 for half of this bottle

Review adapted from notes taken 2/6/11

Appearance: Black with a nice light head

Smell: Smoky (obviously), burnt, with hops that remind me of a lager - not particularly enticing

Taste: One of the few beers I have had that tastes remarkably better than the smell - smoky, yes, but this is not the main characteristic of the beer - the malt profile is simply amazing - and with the smoke, the flavor is incredible - molasses, hints of dark fruits, loads of malts, BBQ-level char, smoke

Mouthfeel: Unreasonably silky - seriously, with the smoke this shouldn't be so smooth

Overall: This is easily one of the best (if not THE best) Baltic porter I have ever had. The smokiness may seem like a gimmick, but it is really not; the beer is genuinely solid.

 801 characters

Photo of mnstorm99
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First off I am not a huge fan of Smoked beers, so this review is really my own.
Nice black pour, with a huge light tan head that stays forever. Lacing is as good as it gets.
Aroma is malty, chocolate and caramel sweetness. And of course there is a touch of smoke in there, but not too much to turn me off.
Taste is a nice malt sweetness coming from the caramel, with a touch of toffee and chocolate. Again, like the aroma, there is some smoke it there, but it is nicely subtle, as well as some roasted malts also. And just a nice little touch of spicy hops.
Mouthfeel is nice and full, with a great smoothness to it, and I could drink a few of these easily.

 657 characters

Photo of GeezLynn
4.37/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2009 bottle

Deep black color with a frothy light brown head that is easily revived with the occasional swirl.

Coffee, lots of chocolate, a hint of smoked malts.

Starts with sweet chocolate and dark fruit flavors and moves into a smooth smokey flavor that is light, but very noticeable. Not sure how much time has attenuated the smokeyness, but it's more complementary than rauch dominant. There's also a soft tannic woodyness adding a little complexity. Finishes bitter and slightly dry.

Body is medium with moderate carbonation. Nice smooth feel, which Surly always seems to get right.

I haven't been all that impressed by Smoke the 2 times I have had it on tap while drinking other beers. But this bottle really surprised me. Smooth, tasty, and very drinkable for the abv.

 780 characters

Photo of woosterbill
4.37/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber into a mini nonic; shared at a tasting.

A: Looks black, with clear ruby tones around the edges. Fairly thin tan head that settles into a ring. No complaints.

S: Chocolate smoke. Perfect balance of rich sweet malts and smooth, meaty smoke. Awesome.

T: Follows the nose perfectly, with the malts taking the fore and the smoke following things up with a hint of oak on the finish. Delicious.

M: Surprisingly light and smooth body, with light carbonation. Could be better.

D: Tasty and very easy to put away. No noticeable alcohol.

Notes: Yet another great beer from Surly. This is both one of the best Baltic Porters I've ever had and one of the best smoked beers. There a lot going on here, and everything works beautifully. Thanks, Chris, for bringing this gem!


 782 characters

Photo of reebtaerG
4.36/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had on draft 4oz pour into snifter at churchkey on 5/8/14

A-Pours a dark brownish black with tan head.

S-Aromas of smoke, tobacco,and chocolate. Feels like you are at a campfire.

T-Tasting notes of smoke, roast, malts, tobacco, light chocolate.

M-Mouthfeel gives a medium-full body with a dry finish. Decent carbonation

O-Overall quite surprised loved the smoke aroma and flavor.

 387 characters

Photo of FreshmanPour77
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review #100 on 6-13-10
Reviewed cold from a bottle to a glass

A - Poured black with 1 finger of foam, not much of a lacing ring but there was enough to show a little something on the glass. Can't see if there is any carbonation bubbles present

S - Smoke aroma, dark roasted malts. A bit of a hop presence lingering. Oatmeal and vanilla and coffee notes are the heavy hitters with smoke a little behind

T/M - Medium bodied, smoke flavors and coffee along with some dark baker's chocolate. Finished smooth and creamy. Not as smokey as some brews that I have add. Very easy drinker

D - Excellent choice for my 100th review. Another great brew from Surly. Medium bodied smooth sipper. An easy brew that I can easily have more than a couple of glasses of. I recommend this brew if you can find it yet on a shelf or trade for it

 826 characters

Photo of GbVDave
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a tulip glass at Map Room 1/13/08. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Pitch black. Tar black. Black as the pits of hell! Capping this glass of evil is a tight and dark-khaki head that left interesting looking lines of wavy lace in the glass.

S: Huge aromas of smoked malt, campfire, dark fruit, dark chocolate, espresso, and applewood smoked bacon.

T: See above with a healthy dose of hops. One of the flavors reminded me of dark chocolate covered bacon.

M: Quite peppery and bitter, true to the style. The bitter mouthfeel backed off a little as it warmed and turned decidedly creamy.

D: Proper serving temp is the key with this. This drank like a porter with half the abv. Excellent.

 707 characters

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this beer in a trade with chewyrx08. Thanks Mike!

vintage 2010.

poured into oversized snifter.

Appearance: dark black bodied beer with a 1 finger tall whitish/tan colored head. Drops to a moderate cap full of large bubbles. Decent lace on the side of the glass.

Smell: This baltic porter smells delightful. Chocolate and roasty malts with a nice balance of smokiness. The smoke smells mildly meaty like bacon, charcoal, and a campfire.

Taste: Its starts off like a solid baltic porter and finishes smokey! Great balance between the baltic porter and the smokiness; it tastes similiar to the nose. Mild chocolate sweetness from the malts to start things off. Little bit of roast and black licorice. A little bit of woody and earthy note probably from the oak barrel and hops. The smoke comes in about mid palate and blends nicely with the malty profile of this beer. The smoke is a little bacony and also has a nice charred quality to it. The finish is very balanced with mild milk chocolate and smoke notes lingering pleasantly. This beer start to show some fruitiness as it warms to room temperature.

Mouthfeel: medium boided beer with moderate carbonation. Really smooth and drinkable at over 8%; not a hint of booze. Carbonation is right where you would want it for this beer. The beer is mildly creamy and it has a mild dry finish.

Overall: Surly makes fantastic dark beers. Surly Four is my favorite beer from this brewery and Surly Smoke is not far behind it. This beer is also probably the best baltic porter and the best smoked beer that I have ever drank! Bravo Surly; you guys nailed this beer!

 1,617 characters

Photo of Viggo
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle, thanks to grub for sharing!

Pours a clear dark red, appears black away from the light, very thick and chunky tan head forms and settles down to a big ring around the glass, some lace spots stick all over.

Smell is great, very heavy and malty, big caramel/toffee, lightly smokey, lightly roasty, some chocolate milk, raisin and licorice, a touch of alcohol, a bit of dark fruit, really nice aroma.

Taste is great too, some chocolate milk up front, nice touch of creaminess, alcohol, heavy raisin, lightly smokey, brown sugar, biscuit, nice roasty middle, a touch of booze but well hidden, balanced finish thats lightly sweet, huge flavour.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation, silky smooth, a bit of warmth going down. A great beer, thanks Russ!

 785 characters

Photo of Mistofminn
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this a couple times on tap, but never in the right situation to review it. Got a couple bottles and figured I'd finally get this one in the books.

Pours dark translucent brown, but once in the glass appears pitch black. A brown head comes and goes quickly, much like soda foam. Looks lighter in body than I remember.

The nose is full of roasted malts, a light pilsner like hop character, dark dried fruits and subtle smoked malts. It's great, just like I remember it, possibly more mellow.

Taste is awesome. Smooth and malty, roasted and lightly smoked. Dark dried fruits and a nice pilsner like hop character just like the nose. The smoke is incredibly subtle and I think (just as I did the first couple times I had it) that the name is misleading. If you actually know anything about the beer, you know your not going to get a smoked beer, but rather a traditional baltic porter with a light subtle hint. Dry, earthy and smokey in the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium, smooth and creamy with a higher carbonation than I remember. Drinkability in this is awesome, and probably dangerous. It's way to easy to drink an entire bottle to myself.

Overall, I think I liked this slightly better on tap, but can't really complain about this in bottle form. I don't really see this improving too much in the bottle, but it certainly won't get any worse.

 1,349 characters

Smoke from Surly Brewing Company
4.14 out of 5 based on 896 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.