Shipyard Imperial Porter (Pugsley's Signature Series) | Shipyard Brewing Co.

269 Ratings
Shipyard Imperial Porter (Pugsley's Signature Series)Shipyard Imperial Porter (Pugsley's Signature Series)

Brewed by:
Shipyard Brewing Co.
Maine, United States

Style: Baltic Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.10%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Jason on 11-16-2008

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Ratings: 269 |  Reviews: 176
Photo of kaseydad
3.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Snifter pour and I am met with a black liquid and a beige foamy head which starts out massive but trickles to a ring around the glass. The smell consists of tobacco, smoke, butterscotch, leather and roasted malts. The taste is on the bitter side with malt leading the way. There is some smokey taste in there as well and a nice bite on the finish. Sort of sweet on the swallow. Mouthfeel is rather average based on the going's on. Very easily drunk even for a 7.10. The taste is nice enough where a bomber left me wanting more. Nice Imperial Porter though make sure to let it warm as the flavors really intensify.

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Photo of biglite351
2.66/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - a not of red around the edge. Creamy tan head that leaves a good bit of lace.

S - malty with mild chocolate and something that reminds me of wine.

T - roasting bitter malts. Dont like the flavor much. Too much bitterness and not much of anything else.

M - light coating, but not thin, with no real tingle.

D - pass.

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Photo of FreshHawk
3.99/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Deep brown with slight ruby hue and an average sized, creamy, frothy, off-white head. Decent retention with some thin patchy lace left.

S - Wonderful chocolate aroma with some bittersweet chocolate as well as a rich fudge aroma. Roasted dark malt with hints of coffee. Some burnt caramel malt.

T - Slight let down from the nose. Lightly roasted malt with some brown sugar and caramel sweetness. Chocolate is still there but toned down from the aroma and is mostly dark chocolate. Hints of coffee and dark fruit. Lighter tasting than I was expecting.

M - Medium body with average carbonation. Feels a little thin and slick.

D - Easy to drink beer. Some nice porter flavors, although it is a little lighter than expected.

Notes: The flavors were nice, and it was an enjoyable beer, but other than the smell I wouldn't have guessed this was an Imperial Porter. That said, it is an enjoyable porter.

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Photo of claspada
3.7/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The aroma has quite a lot of butterscotch. Some fudgy chocolate and a mix of some darker fruits; slight notes of coffee.

The tastes are mostly smooth, darker malts with notes of breadiness and chocolate. The finish is a minimal bitterness with notes of nuttiness and a gentle spicy/earthy hop bite.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied, a little bit too much carbonation for my taste.

Overall this is a good beer, not great. Nothing I will remember for the rest of my life, but still decent. Not a horendoues price point but not worth seeking out.

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Photo of aepb1
4.33/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Black with a brown foamy head

S- Malty chocolate and coffee

T- Dark coffee and chocolate malts up front moving to a dark molasses and some fruity sweetness. Nice deep flavor

M- Medium bodied, creamy bit the carbonation cuts the creaminess a bit which is dissapointing

D- This was aged for about a year before opening but if I had another I'd definitely look forward to more age!

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

~2009 release; Sampled October 2010
Definitely a bit over-carbonated as a reasonable pour into my 25cl glass quickly forms a fat, four-finger thick, nicely browned, dark tan colored head. The beer is a dark brown, almost black color that shows a touch of ruby highlights when held up to the light. The aroma smells of burnt chocolate, espresso, roasted grain and burnt prunes up front and there is a deep toasted grain character that forms a really solid middle to the nose. The aroma seems a touch mild for a beer of this strength and at times there is a weird vegetal note, but this last is fairly fleeting, though now that I have finally recognized it I am finding it annoyingly easier to pick it out.

Fairly light bodied, actually down right thin and there is a strong licorice component to this beer's flavor (this last is likely the yeast influence). A caramelized vegetal note lingers on the tongue after each sip along with some roast grain bitterness and hop bitterness. The roast character is a bit more prominent b/c this beer is so thin, it still manages to have some sweetness though so that it isn't completely out of balance. Dark fruit notes of roasted plum and burnt raisin add some fruitiness and the roast malt adds notes of mocha, dark cocoa and deeply toasted bread.

The body of this beer is what really kills it, if the burnt vegetal note was also gotten rid of this could actually be a really good English-leaning Imperial Porter. As it is though, this is drinkable, but really more interesting to try and pick out its flaws than to try and actually drink. I actually had some high hopes for this beer as I figured the age would give the yeast a chance to settle in.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.2/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue XI:

A moderate level of carbonation forms a thin tan lacing, which leaves several sticky rings on the glass. The charcoal black color is dark enough not to let any light through, and a lovely darkness it is. Complex nose of chocolate cake batter, hint of bubblegum, ripe figs, iced coffee and a bit of brown bread. Creamy, silky, lush, full body flows onto the palate with a rich smoothness. There's a mild burnt flavor throughout, with roasted grain and suggestions of burnt sugar and unsweetened chocolate. Solid malt foundation, not too much sweetness, but certainly more than enough to hold the beer together. Woody herbal hopping shows a modest bitterness--more of a tagalong flavor with the roasted character. There's a mild warmth from the alcohol with a mellow fruitiness that goes from raisins to figs. A clean roasted finish points toward dry.

Very impressive, a really robust Porter here. Very balanced, and with just enough complexity to make it interesting without cutting into its drinkability.

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Photo of beyah
2.97/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark as a Maine Winter Night. The correct amount of head for this style deep tan head.

Stong malt profile. It smells of coffee and molasses.

The hops are there but not overpowering, a very smooth full bodied porter.
The mouthfeel, is good but this is a sipper not one to drink quickly.

It's a good beer but left me looking for more, as porters go it was middle of the road.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.85/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours black with little head- what there is subsides to a thin swirl. Smells malty and a little fruity, followed by some chocolate aromas, but all quite dry. Tastes quite similar, but with some earthy notes at the end that help round out the flavors. Quite dry in the mouth, this seems like it's somewhere between an English porter and a Baltic porter. Not bad at all, but not nearly definitive of the style.

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Photo of Lerxst
3.85/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a very dark brown with a one finger khaki colored head that has average retention and leaves a few wisps of lace.

S-The nose is nice, but tame and subdued. A more prominent nose would enhance the experience. Roasted malt and dark chocolate, hints of coffee, brown sugar and molasses.

T-Somewhat rich and sweet malt, toffee, chocolate, coffee, dark fruit and molasses. Its good.

M-Medium body, somewhat creamy, relatively low carb level.

D-Goes down easy. More than one wouldn't be a problem.

Not the best porter I've ever had, but its no slouch either.

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Photo of Sammy
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Imperial porter brought back from Vermont. Pours dark brown with soapy head. A nice roast,puff of smoke, strong licorice above all,a bit of chocolate, licorice anise mostly.A tad below average mouthfeel.Warrior, English Fuggles, and East Kent Goldings Hops

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Photo of Gosox8787
4.1/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Presentation: On tap poured into a pint glass at a local bar.

Appearance: Dark brown to almost black in color. Not much head to speak of at all and it quickly recedes into nothing.

Aroma: Bitter dark chocolate and espresso dominate the nose. Some caramel and toffee balance it out.

Taste: Much like the aroma, espresso notes dominate with some dark chocolate mixed in. The flavor profile tastes like a coffee beer to me more than an Imperial Porter. Coffee bean bitter takes over where usually there would be some fruitiness.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied mouthfeel, especially for a porter. Dry finish as well. Some pretty noticable carbonation here as well, which makes this beer seem crisp.

Drinkability: The ABV is well hidden and the flavors are balanced and complimentary for the most part. I would have no problem finishing a couple glasses of this.

Overall, a nice porter that has more of the flavor profile of a coffee porter than a Baltic porter. Definitely the best offering I've ever had from Shipyard as well. Worth a try, especially on tap.

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Photo of grub
3.63/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle topped with gold foil. sampled aug 2/2010.

pours black and opaque with a huge fluffy brown head. the head drops fairly fast but leaves plenty of spotty lace as it falls.

aroma is nice. anise. caramel and toffee. alcohol. dark and milk chocolate. toasted whole wheat bread. bit of biscuit and cracker. a touch fruity. earthy.

taste is nice. caramel and anise. bit of toffee. light alcohol. dark and milk chocolate. toasted whole wheat bread. biscuit. earthy. bit of coffee. a bit fruity. medium-low bitterness level, mostly chocolate and coffee.

mouthfeel is nice. medium body. just over medium carbonation level, which feels a touch high.

drinkability is good. pretty well balanced. a fairly nice porter.

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Photo of Viggo
3.53/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle, big thanks to grub for sharing.

Pours an opaque dark orange/brown, almost black away from the light, medium sized tan head forms and settles down to a medium ring around the glass and a thin layer, some decent chunks of lace stick.

Smell is alright, very sweet, brown sugar/corn syrup, raisin, very fruity, raisin/dates, a bit of floral hoppiness, caramel, light chocolate, pretty sugary, a bit of oak, some port/currant, quite rich/old ale sweetness.

Taste is similar, pretty sweet and fruity, very malty, caramel/brown sugar, sticky toffee pudding, fruity, raisin/dates, some port, floral, sugary, very light biscuit/wafer toastiness but not a lot of chocolate/roast.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation. A bit of warmth going down. Solid beer but not very porter like. Thanks Russ!

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Photo of SolomonGrundy
4.17/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

OK, let's see if Maine can redeem the East Coast...Pours a wicked super-dark mahogany - near to black. Head is a beautiful tan, persistent, leaves awesome lace. Really robust aroma, tons of dark chocolate, maybe some cinnamon, a little raspberry...complex and yummy smelling. Flavor is intense - deep, tangy bites of the chocolate roast hit you right away, and with an excellent, full mouth of flavor. VERY robust and delicious. Strong hop character on the finish, with some sour fruit rolling around in there. Outstanding beer, really delicious. $5.99/bomber though so it's not cheap, but it is worth every penny.

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Photo of jera1350
3.45/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up for $1.99, couldn't pass it up.

Huge hiss upon cracking the lid. Pours about 3/4 of fluffy tan foam. Hmm, can I have some beer with my head? The little body is black in color.

Has a sweet, candy-like nose with some lightly roasted malts. Kind of a chocolate bar and sweet tart mix.

Pretty uneventful tasting. Malty with a light roast, bit of dark chocolate, and a hint of bitter coffee. There is a little citrus presence to add some brightness.

The carbonation is a too high and a little harsh. Doesn't quite reach full body as advertised.

Not exactly what I was hoping for, but it's not bad. Their is definitely a carbonation issue which leads to a healthy amount of burping. I would pass on this one next time.

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Photo of NorthbayStout
4.01/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The pint glass allows enough light in to show the beer's deeper brown character at the edges, and it ends up almost black in the center. Many people find the skunky, angry nose unpleasant, but given the style I think it's an exceptionally interesting character. One does not drink this beer expecting calm and pleasant. The slick, almost sticky mouthfeel wasn't my favorite aspect, but the robust, almost chewy chocolaty flavor redeems the mouth coating thickness. Good for a single pint though I can't imagine the pallet that can handle more than that. A good closer for a night of tasting.

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Photo of kingcrowing
2.9/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into a DFH snifter.

Pours a very dark black with a HUGE brown head that slowly fades away to some really nice fine lacing. Nose is gross, it smells like vomit or bad chocolate, bleh.

Taste is decent, lots of roasted chocolate and burnt coffee, it's got a very nice mouthfeel though, it's really creamy with nice carbonation, but that's the highlight of this beer. It's decent and I got it cheap but don't pay more than $3-4 for a bomber.

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Photo of lou50rp
3.03/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It is very dark, almost black, with a slight head with a light brown color. Not a bad start. The smell was of dark roasted coffee. A nice clean smell. The taste matched the smell with a little bitterness at the end. A good taste for a porter, but nothing spectacular. It has a good mouth feel with little carbonation. What I expect from a porter. It was an average drink. Not worth buying again, especially at the price.
Seems like Shipyard was trying to overcome mediocrity with high ABV.

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Photo of dwilson01
4.02/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber into my arrogant bastard pint glass, extremely dark brown but not quite to black yet. You can still see a small glow when held up to the light. Minimal amount of head, mocha tan coloring on it.

My initial whiff on the nose picks up mainly roasted and crystal malts. It's a clean scent and the roast reminds me somewhat of coffee though not overly so. Pick up a small amount of sweeter molasses type aromas as well as some alcohol esters. Overall the aromas are great, very strong and bold...just hope it delivers on flavor!

The malt flavors are prominent, toasted, roasted, chocolate, and crystal malts from what I can tell. I didn't think bread right off the bat but I'm picking up some which reminds me of the darker types (rye, pumpernickel, dark wheat). Sweet flavors abound as well, molasses, maple, vanilla, and definitely chocolate. The roasted malt gives it a coffee-ish hint. All of those flavors seemed to combine very well for a full bodied smooth character with not much alcohol present.

Balanced mouthfeel, it's not gnarly thick but most definitely not a chugger either. It keeps you wanting more while also satisfying you at the same time. Great brew in my opinion although it's not overly notable on the whole of all the beers I've tried.

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Photo of thekevlarkid
3.53/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Out of a bomber bottle (that I needed for brewing purposes!) this beer was an almost completely opaque, dark brown color with one finger of tan head. The retention was pretty good, especially as a skim and the lacing in broken bands. The aroma was of roasted malt, coffee, chocolate malt, bittersweet chocolate and baking cocoa. The flavors were similarly slanted towards the dark/roasty side but with little complexity beyond that. I tasted sweet caramel and chocolate malt up front with some light molasses notes as well followed by the coffee, roasted malt and alcohol heat. The hops did give enough bitterness to balance the malt elements especially towards the end. Slightly nutty and maybe slightly spicy but otherwise straight forward; sweet malt, dark malt, bitter finish. The mouthfeel was average, perhaps a little oily, the body full and the carbonation a little high and frothy especially at first.

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Photo of Mdog
3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Very dark brown, huge head, have to wait to pour it in my big pint glass.

Smell: Roasted aroma, some sweetness.

Taste: Starts sweet and gets sweeter. It mostly reminds me of mocha coffee with one or two too many sugar packets added. Slight roasted flavor buried in there too.

Drinkability: Too sweet to recommend.

This was marked down to really cheap so I picked one up. Way too sweet for my taste buds, not enough body or roasted flavors. I suppose you get what you pay for, glad I didn't pay full price.

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Photo of Gobzilla
3.9/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: poured a very dark brown with a half finger tan head and decent sticky lacing on the glass.

S: toffee molasses aromas with sugar sweetness hints of dark fruits and raisins.

T: a boozy molasses flavor with raisin sweetness invades the palate at first with a mild bitterness at the end.

M: medium body with light carbonation and a bitter finish.

D: over all a pretty decent offering from shipyard. Probably would not drink a whole one due to the sweetness in the beer.

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Photo of jlindros
3.11/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

<Sigh> another beer from Shipyard, most of them are very bland, boring, and nothing to write home about. The Pugsly Series is a little better mostly, but nothing spectacular. The brew pub up in Portland (if I'm not confusing it with someone else) is actually pretty good. But since this is all I can get down here in MA, here comes another one.

A: A semi dark rich 1 finger head rises up and fades semi quickly over very dark, but not black color, just hints of light coming through around the sides.

N: At least it's aromatic, as I could smell from the pour. Eh, pretty bland again, mostly syrupy sweetness, some extract like syrup aromas, a touch of crystal malt, even less touch of roast, little chewy malts, and a little porter like nose. Very bleh!

T: Meh, a little better than the nose but not quite. Again a fake syrupy sweet taste, like corn syrup or extract. A slight roasty flavor with some roasted malt earthy bitterness. A vague reminiscence of chocolate malt even, as if they waved the chocolate malt over the top of the fermenting syrup (notice syrup and not beer). Semi sweet, but a little dry at the same time. A little bit of that over roasted stale coffee bean flavor too.

M: Med to light body, pretty syrupy, and decent carbnonation.

F: Semi bitter with more roasted malt earthy bitterness and even a hint of earthy minerality, and a hint of earth hop (yes hop) bitterness. A touch of lingering roast fades quickly and leaves that syrupy extract sweetness that just sticks around, despite the beer being pretty dry at this point. It's sticky sweet, and the bitterness is not the most pleasant, but somewhat... what's the word I'm looking for, oh yeah, unpleasant. Again a touch of stale over roasted coffee beans. Actually, the only nice taste on the finish is the earthy lingering bitter hops that pan out, it took me a while to find them below the depths of tar, but low and behold, there they are. (that rhymed, awesome!)

I think you can figure out my thoughts on this beer. Very bland, stale, extract and syrupy tasting, somewhat unpleasant bitter bland beer. I'm really starting to think the Shipyard people have either been on vacation for the past 2 years and robots are making their beer, or they just don't give a f*ck
Shipyard, you guys used to be cool. Wtf happened?

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Photo of ccrida
3.53/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was a decent strong porter, but there was nothing particularly unique about it. Nice head and lace, smell was a bit acrid, the taste had a bit of diacetyl but was otherwise nice, decent chocolate. Medium bodied mouthfeel, the drinkability was good, as I finished it before I realized to really type the review a few minutes ago while working on something else! Wouldn't go out of my way to seek out though, the packaging makes it look more special then it is....

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Shipyard Imperial Porter (Pugsley's Signature Series) from Shipyard Brewing Co.
3.71 out of 5 based on 269 ratings.
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