Fore Smoked Stout
Dark Horse Brewing Company

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Smoke Beer
Ranked #14
Ranked #9,826
3.94 | pDev: 9.39%
Dark Horse Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
Very Good
Notes: January
Reviews: 448 | Ratings: 1,129 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by output01x:
Photo of output01x
3.76/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. capped bottle (no date) into a snifter glass.

A vigorous pour yields a 1 1/2-finger mocha-colored head that slowly recedes over a few minutes to a thick, even coating. The body is a strong, near-black mahogany with no traces of color when held to light. Great lacing clings to the sides of the glass throughout consumption but never seems to stay there for long.

The nose is pretty standard for a stout. Dark and milk chocolate, roasted coffee beans, mocha, caramel, and just a touch of vanilla. Unfortunately, I'm not really picking up on any smoked aromas.

Like the nose, dark and milk chocolate flavors immediately come out to shine along with a sharp lactose-like sweetness. Once swallowed, dark roasted coffee beans join the mix. As these flavors settle, an overlying smokiness begins to become apparent. The smoke flavor is not dominating and instead blends well with the other flavors. This beer starts good and sweet and ends with a drying smoky aftertaste that really beckons the drinker to come back for more. The flavors are complex and intriguing and there is a great variance between how each sip starts and ends.

Medium to full bodied with excellent carbonation, this beer is about as refreshing as a thick stout can get. The body seems to be just right as it does not become syrupy or excessively sticky but does coat your mouth well. The carbonation is rather fizzy for a stout but does not take away from the flavors nor does it make the beer feel light.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of dmgeng
4.31/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Got this one as part of a mix and match 6pk and I was not disappointed.

A - Dark black color. Cascading dark brown head with lower staying power. Not a lot of lacing.

S - Initially there is the light smokiness that I was expecting accompanied by a strong malty aroma with roast and chocolate tones. The chocolate and malty aromas really compliment the smoke and roasted character which is more reminiscent of a great porter.

T - Much like the smell the smoked malt is throughout the entire taste and evolves over the palate but never overpowers it. The rich and sweeter stout character is really carrying the beer with malt, chocolate, and roast. The roasted character is there along with the smokiness but really is secondary to the sweeter and more robust flavors. The flavor is very similar to a porter but with more smoke and soft roasted character and overall more complexity. The bitterness is there from the roastiness but it provides balance to the sweeter flavors.
M - Moderate to low mouth-feel. Light carbonation. The lower carbonation and tons of flavor give this 7% beer more flavor impact but clears the palate well after the sip.

Overall, this is probably the best smoked beer I've ever had. Even thought the ABV is only 7% there is still a huge amount of complexity and flavors. The other facet that makes this beer very good is the complimenting smoke and not the overpowering smoke. All of the larger and more smoke forward beers leave more to be desired because they give the beer more of a bacon/burnt flavor that is less appealing than a gentile smoke character in your porter. I would like an imperial version of this with more body and more ABV but I will definitely get this one next winter.

Glass- Snifter

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
4.22/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Oh man. Bubble bath time. I'm not a homo but I really needed one tonight. Nothing like a new stout to go along with it, no?

Appearance : Pours a tarry black color... pitch, motor oil, coal...obsidian. It's a black hole in a glass, there's no way light is coming through on the other side. They should have called this the 'black hole of death'. The 3 finger head actually pours slightly red, like an angry irish fire brick red. It settles down into a peanut butter brown with tinges of red. It has receded to 1/2 a finger at this point.

Aroma : Salted Caramel Macchiato. Spot on. It has the roasted coffee with rich caramel and cream notes, and a toffee-like sweetness, and a faint smoked aroma. It's beautiful. The bouquet is medium strength.

Taste : First, it's roast coffee, followed by a slight hit of toffee and caramel, then coffee bean and dark charred smoke. Roasted and fresh ground coffee are left lingering on the tongue. It's a rather complex profile yet stays linear and true to form.

Mouthfeel : Medium bodied, bordering on full bodied, with an undeniable slight creaminess that's brought into balance by the charred and smokey notes. It ends semi-dry.

Overall : Another hit Stout. I love it, you should too.

Aging notes :

At 1 year the Rauch really starts to come out and it tastes very smokey, very roasty. I love it.

At 2 years the beer loses its complexity and feel, and tastes more along the lines of mild coffee and stale chocolate, with aromas of oats and feels like a lager.

Drink at 1 year for maximum smoke.

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Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Brilliant deep black with a two finger chocolate head that quickly dissipates.
S: Smoke, wine and dark toasted malt with traces of chocolate and coffee.
T: Roast malts with chocolate seasoned lightly by smoke. M: Medium full body, medium carbonation, smooth and creamy.
O: the smoke is very suibtle in this beer and well balanced by the other elements.

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Photo of zeff80
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, jet black color with a small, light brown head of bubbly foam. It left thin rings of stick lace.

S - It smelled smoky with notes of chocolate and roasted malt.

T - Great roasted malt like an American Stout with a great woody/smokey taste.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a pretty good smoked brew. Not overpowering but good enough smoked flavor.

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Photo of Arenbeer
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a Snifter glass

Served at Fridge Temperature

A- Pours a nice solid black with a small amount of dark brown in the light. Not much head at all other than a nice brown rim around the glass.

S- Up front is really nice smoke and roasted burnt coffee with an almost sweet bacon like aroma. Some chocolate in there as well.

T- Creamy roasted malts with bitter unsweetened dark chocolate. Not as much smoke as the aroma unfortunately, gets lost in the creamy coffee and chocolate flavors but definitely adds a nice extra element to the beer.

M- Creamy heavier body with moderate carbonation and a nice bittersweet finish.


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Photo of hoptualBrew
3.71/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pitch black pour with a wicked looking deep reddish brown head, but doesnt stand long. Legs stick all over the glass, moreso than I would think for 8% booze. In the glass the beer just looks flat though - limp, wet noodle, erectile dysfunction - no lacing anywhere! Aroma is beautiful, doting touches of sweet milk chocolate in the midst of roasted smoked wood. Caramel, toffee, and booze are also detectable and create a well rounded nose. Caramel & smoked wood hit up front with a strong combination of dark chocolates and alcohol heat in the back. Carbonation is about right here, but the body is too thin, in my opinion, and would match the smoked character better with some more "meat" to it.

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Photo of Morakaton
4/5  rDev +1.5%

Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.8/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into my imperial pint glass. Appears an opaque dark brown color with about a finger of tan foam that disappears in less than a minute. Smells mildly smokey. Aromas of dark chocolate and prunes are also apparent. Tastes very rich with a nice alcohol burn on the tongue and throat. Notes of dark chocolate, raisins, coffee and roasted malts dominate the flavor with a subtle smokiness throughout. Finish is dry and mildly bitter. Smooth and full bodied with minimal carbonation. I really enjoyed this on a chilly evening. Great to sip on. Worth a try if you see it around.

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Photo of tatoodkelt
3.82/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this one up last month while in MI for a wedding.

Consumed 8/28/09- from notes.

Brown 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A- An inky pitch black topped off with a bubbly one finger mocha head that faded pretty quick leaving a thin ring around the glass. Decent lacing.

S- Roasted malts, hints of dark chocolate and coffee. And that camp fire aroma that I love.

T- Pretty much the same as the nose with the smoke being even more evident. I'm surprised to see others mentioning a lack of smoke. A little alchohol sneaking in there too.

M- Medium bodied, smooth but kinda on the watery side.

D- I love the taste but this ones a sipper for me. No more than one in a sitting but I'll be looking for this one again!

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Photo of stortore
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Eric1Mess
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

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

Pours a moderately dark black/brown with a quickly dissipating brown head. Light smoky smell. Taste is sweet up front. I taste beef jerky in this finish. I don't really taste any smokiness - not sure about the style here. The mouthfeel is very creamy. Very drinkable especially for a stout. This is really nice beer, though. It's a little sweeter than most stouts, but still has enough strength to satisfy.

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Photo of marine1975
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of MDDMD
4.01/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A-dark brown black color with a decent tan head and little lacing

S-chocolate, dark roasted malt, smoke, coffee, molasses

T-dark roasted malt, coffee, vanilla, chocolate, subtle smokiness, little bitterness in the finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, smooth and silky

O-a pretty good smoked beer, nice body and decent flavors

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Photo of t8dd
4/5  rDev +1.5%

Photo of enfield249
3.58/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a thick, thick black, slight tan foam that dissipates quickly.

S - Sweet smelling, dark plum and a slight roast smell.

T - Very stong flavor of cinder. Campfire like almost. On the tale end there is some sweetness.

M - Full, thick and full. Almost no co2.

D - It's a smoked stout all right! If your not much for the style, I can see how one wouldn't like it, but I enjoyed it. Worth a shot, and one of the better smoked stouts I have had.

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Photo of TappaKeggaBrew
3.93/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours nearly black. This is as dark a beer as I've ever had - even direct sunlight only barely penetrated at the very edge. The head was chocolate brown, but very thin and with no lacing.

S: Faint smokiness that could be from burnt grain or smoked malt. Chocolate and coffee notes are both present. There's some molasses and dark fruit notes as well.

T: Malt flavors yield sweetness for a brief moment, then the stronger notes of toasted grain take over. Tart fruit flavors take their turn at the forefront, then fade as bitter and finally acrid flavors move in at the finish. The smokiness is there throughout, but always in the distant background of the other flavors.

M: Moist, with below average carbonation. It's somewhat chewy, but less so than I expected from the appearance. Booze is detectable, but not harsh.

O: But for the lackluster head, this is a beautiful stout. The smoke was weaker in both aroma and taste than I'd hoped, or at least seemed that way next to the potency of a stout that nears imperial status. Enjoyable, but not a home run.

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Photo of DrBier
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Jas45678
3.25/5  rDev -17.5%

Photo of brdc
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Small capped bottle, poured into a snifter.

Out of the bottle, it looks like motor oil, thick and pitch black, although it is not that full on the palate. Minimal, dark brown head with no retention, but some coating of the glass' sides.
Somked nose, but not like a rauchbier. Roasted malts, lots of it, some coffee come to your nose.
Suprisingly medium bodied for its motor oil appearance, taste is roasted malts, sometimes closer to burnt than roasted. Some bitterness at the end. Coffee, bitter chocolate.
It would need a lit bit more body, a little bit less charred taste to be truly amazing; as it is a very good stout.

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Photo of beergod1
3.72/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours silky black with minimal, quickly dissipating head. Aroma is smoke (of course) with roasty slightly sweet chocolate notes following. Tasting it, the smoke is there but takes a back seat to the coffee and bitter chocolate notes. Finish is smoky and bitter and hangs around awhile, which surprises me because it drank rather thin, Really good beer and really good stout but honestly, I have had better examples of smoked beers. Seems to be missing...Something ? !

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Photo of HumanParaquat
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

Photo of russwilliam
4/5  rDev +1.5%

Photo of Chaney
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

Fore Smoked Stout from Dark Horse Brewing Company
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 1129 ratings