Beadeca's Well | Thornbridge Brewery

very good
15 Reviews
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Beadeca's WellBeadeca's Well

Brewed by:
Thornbridge Brewery
England, United Kingdom

Style: Smoked Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by CwrwAmByth on 12-28-2012

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Reviews: 15 | Ratings: 57
Photo of GuyFawkes
4.69/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Unknown vintage; drank 9/10/14 on draft @ Fischman's.

Brown hue.

Tan head; nice lace.

Fresh earth & dark cherry nose.

Creamy medium mouthfeel.

The flavor is a smooth mix of fresh earth, mild mocha & hints of dark cherry. Superb.

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Photo of biegaman
3.84/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

The addition of peat-smoked malt didn't smoke out all the colour - Beadeca's Well, despite seeming rather dark and blackish away from the light, actually contains some rather splashy shards of ruby that provide little glimpses of clarity. The head looks more smoky: it has an ashy tone and quickly fades into the ether, leaving behind just a ring on the glass.

Mild chocolatey roast, subtle caramel malt and a wisp of smoke - smells alright. Of course, there's no need to intellectualize English Porters - a "working class" style, its appeal is rooted in simplicity, straightforward flavours and a quality I'll call "discretionary satiation" (one pint is perfectly satisfying but there's always the option of more if that's what the mood calls for).

Rugged, restrained and steady in character, this one fits the profile perfectly. What's noted in the aroma replays on the palate but in a little more detail; a toasty biscuity flavour emerges and there's a slightly earthy bitterness on the finish that does well to cut the malt off before either the coffee or nutty milk chocolate flavours become too prominent.

Beadeca's Well tastes like a very conventional English porter, despite a distinct ingredient; peat is a 'love or hate' thing but use of it in this recipe doesn't alienate either camp. Frankly, it's hard to notice. Pay close enough attention, however, and that characteristically briny moss note can be found buried somewhere under all that roasted malt. But it's pretty seamless.

After trying a half dozen of their beers, Thornbridge has convinced me they're a darn good brewery. Beadeca's Well is another one to get if you can. In fact, I've assigned high scores to every offering so far and have struggled to find any criticism (beyond the price point, the blame for which really belongs to geography, high Canadian taxes and a poor exchange rate).

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Photo of Adsfadsfaids
3.81/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle purchased from LCBO, poured into stemmed IPA glass. Best before date of 8/24/16. Consumed 9/8/16.

A: Very nearly black. Huge head, although thin, with good retention. Nice lacing.

S: Sweet, dark fruit like plums or figs. light smoke in the back of my nose as I pull the glass away.

T: Although light, smoke hits right in the center of your palette, followed by and complimenting the strong malt character. Nice hop contrast. Slight spice as it swirls in my mouth, and a very un-fruitlike grapefruity note on the finish. That said, it's difficult to pull any one thing out of this beer. It's a little overwhelming. It's not a mess, but it's definitely a challenging beer.

M: I'd say this beer was pretty big. Not oatmeal stout big, but it definitely had some body to it. It was smooth and silky despite the decent level of carbonation.

O: I like this beer. I bought the only two bottles the LCBO had in mid April, and this was the second of the two. Like I said, the taste is a little bit confusing. The flavours marry quite well, but as a result it's difficult to isolate them. In addition, the hop note I get is a little too strong, the smoke character too weak, and the carbonation too intense for what I personally expect from this beer. As my intro to smoked beer, I'm led to believe that there are better examples of the style out there. Overall, although confusing, it's good. Not perfect, but it's good.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a black color porter with a nice light brown foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma of light roasted malt notes with some very subtle smoked flavours is OK. Taste is a mix of roasted malt notes with subtle smoked flavours and some light coffee notes. Body is light with good carbonation. Not bad but didn’t really stand out either.

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Photo of captaincoffee
3.89/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a near-black brown with a medium but dense head that lasts and leaves a little lacing. Nose is slightly sweet malts and a vague smell like the neighbor is having a barbeque. Fairly light. Flavor is very lightly smoked and leans more towards an easy drinking stout. Nice, but not stand out in any way. Overall, probably a good intro to the style, but maybe not what you are looking for when you grab a smoked beer.

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Photo of portwood
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Smell: smoked meat, toffee, semi-sweet chocolate, brown sugar. Taste: coffee, burnt toast, silky smooth mouth feel. Finish: earthy/peaty, caramel, dry finish, with mild hoppy bitterness.
(bottle bb 08/24/16)

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Photo of EricVonStein
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out a midnight brown colour with a good finger of thick, pillowy dark tan head.

Smells of soft smokey leather, an earthy char and a slight sweetness like a southern bbq.

Tastes of charred earthy coals, coffee and again an old leathery hide with a feeling of saltiness. An earthy hop is there too. Smooth but not overly thick with good bubbles present.

Ultimately a very lightly smoked porter that is more dominated by earthy and charred wood flavours with a sort of sweetness on the tongue. Nice beer with very pleasant flavours and depth. Those expecting a heavy smoke presence will not find it here, though still a very good beer. A bit more smokiness would be nice though.

 684 characters

Photo of thehyperduck
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

500 mL bottle from the LCBO; best before Aug 24 2016 and served at cellar temperature.

Pours an opaque brownish-black colour, initially capped off with nearly two fingers of frothy, creamy light beige-coloured head. It wilts gradually but steadily over the next five minutes, give or take, with the added courtesy of a good swath of sticky lace being deposited on its way downward. A modest collar and bubbly film remain on the surface; looks good to me, and the aroma is similarly inviting. It gives off a good whiff of peated malt and wood smoke, with accompanying notes of molasses, toffee and chocolate integrating nicely. Subtle suggestions of prune and fig, but the smoke and dark malts definitely take centre stage.

Approachable as these sorts of beers go - the porter itself is robust enough to stand up to the smoke, and everything blends together into a nice, balanced equilibrium. Notes of dark, bready malt, toffee and chocolate combine with some faint dark fruit flavours - I'm still leaning towards prune/plum and fig, but no matter. Hints of coffee and molasses on the back end that are overshadowed by burnt wood and smoke. Finishes earthy, woody and slightly leafy, with the aftertaste drying out quickly. Light-medium in body, with light carbonation levels and a soft, smooth mouthfeel that feels just right. This is very well-made and an absolute pleasure to drink.

Final Grade: 4.05, an A-. Beadeca's Well is a superb smoked beer; one of those rare ones where drinking several in a row might not seem like a tiresome endeavour. The peated malt imparts a significant smokiness, but it's still an order of magnitude (or two) less intense than your typical rauchbier, so there's no reason I'd object to another glass of this smoked porter, given its low abv and mostly-balanced flavour profile. Probably not the best Thornbridge product I've tried, but still a solid one that is worth picking up, given the opportunity to do so.

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Photo of Spike
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From bottle into a stout glass. Poured jet black with massive, foaming, three-finger, tan head. Plenty of lacing.

Nose not evident at first. Allowed to warm a little, which permitted cocoa to come through. There is some smokiness there but it's not dominant. Maybe a little too understated.

Dried fruits. Coffee. Understated again. Not quite sure what the point is of this one.

Medium body. Prolonged bitterness at sides of tongue. Quite drying.

Very bitter. Too bitter for the style, in my opinion. Flavour and nose both indistinct. A bit bland.

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Photo of Cramshawbar
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of the weakest (as in alcohol strength, complexity and smokiness) smoked beer that I have tasted.
I feel that in order to achieve greatness or at least come close it, you have to try to emulate those on top of the class. There is no shame in paying homage to the best. Thornbridge decided against it and what you have is a questionable, albeit not an offensive tasting product. You can do much better by looking elsewhere.

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Photo of BGDrock
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: molasses brown, dark and glossy, pouring a full hazelnut head that's dense and has good retention

Aroma: chocolate and smoke, vanilla

Taste & Mouthfeel: a beautiful blend of chocolate and peat, the latter trailing through the finish, leaving tendrils of smoke right until you go for the next sip - but not over-powering; dark chocolate flavour is rich and slightly bitter, and complimented by a full, satiny mouthfeel it makes for a luxurious feel

Overall: a porter with a wonderful balance of vibrant flavours, a delight for winter, and easy drinking; open up the barbecue and get some nice char on a steak to go with this, maybe with some charred vegetables marinated in citrus

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Photo of DenisKolkin
3.79/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

500 ml bottle served at cellar temperature into a pint glass. Purchased from the LCBO for $4.60 CDN.

Appearance - Pours a very dark brown colored beer, with garnet hues when instesely scrutinized in the light. A finger of fluffy tan head is poured and retention is modest leaving behind a thin film on top of the beer and some minor streaks of lacing on the side of the glass.

Smell - Roasty, but subdued. Some earthy elements, with faint hints of smoke and a mention of coffee.

Taste - Starts bitter with a coffee and peat flavor up front before some smoke finally kisses your mouth. A faint fruity flavor kicks in momentarily on the backside adding a little to the complexity. Overall finish is quite smokey and slightly wooden tasting.

Mouthfeel - Smooth and nicely carbonated, body is thinner than you' expect, but about right for a light porter.

Overall - Certainly a very good beer, and for those who love subtlety Beadeca's Well does it better than most. Only problem was that I was looking for just a little more smoke, and I think this could be a great beer. Still nice interplay between the smoke, coffee and wood.

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Photo of EmperorBevis
3.79/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Black bodied with good thick tobacco smoke stain coloured thick head
Smells like good coffee with hints of cigar
flavour is likewise
slightly thin mf but only slightly
subtly smoky

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Photo of dcmchew
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled version.
Poured pitch black, very very faint brown hues in the light, light brown two finger fluffy head. Big retention.
I could smell smoke right after popping the cap, but sniffing the glass i get a bigger smokey-bacon-rauch aroma, sweet and salty, without any porter notes (maybe very faint chocolate, if you really try).
Taste sets things right: first things i get are roasted malts, dark chocolate, espresso, with burnt caramel and low juicy dark fruit (plums, figs, raisin). Juiciness fades away to earthy cocoa powder, ground coffee and faint roasted hazelnuts, with a remaining citrus zestiness (and peel) waaay in the back. Smoke comes in the finish, along with charcoal notes and some faint green hops. It's also predominant in the aftertaste.
Medium body and carbonation, like a common porter. Crisp and dry finish, not considering the smoke.
A very tasty porter, nicely enhanced with smoke. Big difference between smell and taste, but they're both great.

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Photo of CwrwAmByth
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on cask in The Cask, Pimlico.

Pours a murky dark brown colour with an okay head.

Smells nice, with smoked malts dominating.

Again prominent smoked and burnt malts in the taste, thin mouthfeel and a subtle hop bitterness in the background.

Overall a solid stout, interesting use of smoked malts.

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Beadeca's Well from Thornbridge Brewery
3.92 out of 5 based on 57 ratings.
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