Santa's Little Helper - Brandy Barrel Aged | Port Brewing

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21 Ratings

Brewed by:
Port Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by HopHead84 on 12-12-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 21 |  Reviews: 5
Photo of PG2G
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.24/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of drewone
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of CDCNAM
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of akang
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%

Photo of Pecan
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of SocalKicks
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of Zbeetleman
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of Gobzilla
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of dksl16
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of kojevergas
3.74/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Vintage 2012. Served on-draught at 38 Degrees in Alhambra. Reviewed from notes. Served into a 4.5oz taster glass. 10% ABV confirmed. Cost was $4.00 USD. Expectations were quite high given the style and brewery.

A: Pours a gorgeous one finger head of tan colour. Lovely mocha cream. Luscious and attractive. Inviting. I can't wait to try it. Great thickness and retention. Body colour is a solid opaque jet black. Silky. A lovely appearance for the style.

Sm: Chocolate. Cream. Dark malts. Chocolate malt. Subtle brandy. Cocoa dust/powder. No alcohol or yeast is detectable. Not as rich as I expected. It's a nice aroma, and mild to moderate in strength. Subtle and complex, but I did expect a bit more. Excellent balance.

T/MF: Fucking lovely. Excellent build and balance, with guiding subtle brandy notes lending a focusing undertone throughout. Dark malts. Chocolate malt. Cocoa powder. Full bodied and rich. Creamy. Good thickness. Perfect carbonation. Really well put together. Great balance. Not as complex as it could be, though. As it warms, I do get some alcohol coming through. Silky and smooth. Lightly dry on the finish from the brandy.

Dr: Drinkable as hell for the high ABV. Really a delightful brew. The brandy works well here, accentuating the base beer. I'd definitely get this again if I were so lucky. Marvelous execution, but I did expect more subtlety. Another solid brew from Lost Abbey/Port. Great stuff. Highly recommended.

High B

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Photo of sukwonee
4.25/5  rDev 0%

Photo of jmccraney
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of rand
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Sessions Public

Pours rich and viscous, jet black. Notes of brandy booze stream from the glass, along with heavy doses of roasted coffee and unsweetened chocolate. On the palate, the coffee dominates...even the strong notes of brandy are held at bay. The chewy complexion helps notes of toffee-sweetness linger. Delicious, actually adds to Santas Little Helper by sweetening and rounding-out the coffee bitterness.

 425 characters

Photo of Halcyondays
3.85/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

On-tap at Beachwood I,

A: Pours black with an impressive tan head which recedes fairly quickly with nary a trace of lace.

S: Definite notes of brandy barrel. Has that classic fermented plum character with vanilla, raisins. Notes of chocolate as well.

T: Spiritous with some ethanol play. A lot more of the stout comes out here with dark chocolate, hints of licorice, balanced well with the barrel character.

M: Full-bodied, heavy, too hot in the finish makes it a bit of a chore at times, soft yet biting carbonation.

O: A good -bal, but in the end I just wasn't as into it as I thought I'd be. Certainly worth a try for brandy barrel fans.

 645 characters

Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev -5.9%

Photo of jmgrub
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%

Photo of heavenlyStash
5/5  rDev +17.6%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.36/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap for Churchill's Renaissance 2013 at Churchill's Pub & Grille in San Marcos, CA.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, freshly baked gingerbread, molasses, and spices. Taste is much the same with a brandy flavor on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with an incredible smell and some great flavors that make this beer a treat to drink.

 646 characters

Photo of HopHead84
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


On tap at Strong Ale.

A: Black as pitch with a finger of impressive brown froth.

S: Potent brandy presence with plum and grape. Notes of vanilla and cinnamon waft from the glass. Rich dark chocolate with a touch of molasses and a smooth roasted malt profile.

T: Delicious blend of brandy, vanilla, bittersweet dark chocolate, oak, and a firm but judicious roasted malt profile. Some booze but not inappropriate. Big chocolate roasted brandy finish.

M: Upper medium carbonation with a full body. The mouthfeel chewy and sticky with alcohol warming.

Overall: Great beer.

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Santa's Little Helper - Brandy Barrel Aged from Port Brewing
Beer rating: 4.25 out of 5 with 21 ratings