Porter | HaandBryggeriet

Liked This Beer
3.77 w/ 116 ratings

Brewed by:

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Sigmund on 06-17-2007

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Ratings: 116 |  Reviews: 88
Photo of domtronzero
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Batch 208. Brewed 20.01.09. Best Before 20.01.11

A - Clear dark brown with ruby highlights. Huge, quickly formed, long lasting tan head.

S - Dark malts and melanoidins reminiscent of dark dried fruits (prunes and raisins). Toffee and caramelly malts, a little bit smokey.

F/M - Chocolate and toffee with the same dark dried fruits that were detectable in the aroma. Toasty/bready malts. Slight acrid burnt sourness. Very bitter and a little earthy. Effervescent and kinda fizzy. Medium-low mouthfeel with excessive carbonation. Clean aftertaste with just a hint of lingering coffee flavor.

D - Ok, but the high carbonation and acrid burnt sourness make it quite challenging to do more than simply sip on it. Not one of my favorite offerings from this brewery.

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Photo of tavernjef
4.23/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark burnt brown but mostly black in low light. A slip at the bottom of the glass glows dark amber. A huge capping of cocoa hued foam sifts up very frothy and solidly like a sponge and sits with might. Hardly ever moving it keeps a heavy amount always residing. Some patchy lacing sticks across the glass.

Aroma is of bittered chocolate, milk chocolate, and stale dark fruits; that of dark cherry, dates, raisins, and a touch of some nuttyness.

Flavors don't disappoint as it stands at length with some tangy bittering dark and milky chocolate mixing well with a very well balanced and well rounded melange of dark fruity toppings that add some slight souring, but is sort of heavy and dark with dates, dark cherry, and raisin. Very Baltic Porter like and quite nice. The tang it carries goes right through to the finish with a nice little smack of malty goodness and touches of cocoa.

Medium bodyish with a slippery quick step to the tangy stuff but manageable within its hold as the flavor balance with the chocolate adds a nice complexity and counterpoint as it has a very calm smoothness about it while maintaining a nice gripping carbonation.

An enjoyable, subtle, flavorful porter. Seemingly very Norwegian and quite yummy actually. Something about its ease and balance made me like it more as I went along. But for $8 a bottle, its more for special occasions.

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Photo of jdhilt
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Will pour a five+ finger brown head that fades slowly to a thin layer, leaving some lace. Black color, no highlights, ton of yeast left in bottle. Good carbonation and heavy bodied. Roasted chocolate nose. Flavor is roasted to burnt chocolate, smooth. Batch #79, bottled Jun, 2007, best by Jun 2010. This aged very well. Pricey at $8.95 for a 500ml bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, Ma.

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Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.95/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: Classy 16.9oz Euro-style slimline; brewed-on and best-by dates clearly marked, very cool. Sadly, this one got forgotten about, it's a couple of months past its date.

Appearance: Black beer; opaque, with just a bit of brown around the edges. Nice dark tan cap, though it fades to a thick ring and thin film fairly fast.

Smell: Sweet dark roasted grains, some earthiness, hints of bitter chocolate. Just the slightest hint of some booziness, light and subtle.

Taste: Lightly burnt chocolate, medium-roast coffee, light earthiness, some mild burnt grains. Simple and quite drinkable. Just a hint of dark fruit on the finish.

Mouthfeel: The one real downside here; a bit thin, esp. for 6.5%. Still, makes this...

Drinkability: Really drinkable

Conclusion: Really tasty porter. I would definitely buy this if it was readily available and (this is more to the point) not $6.99 a pint.

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Photo of Reaper16
3.15/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500mL bottle - labeled "Norse Porter," best by August 2010 - served into a tulip glass

Pours a typical porter-like dark brown. The head is unspectacular; a whole finger's worth of tan foam. Blah.

The aroma is actually pretty interesting but not in a way that makes it good or anything like that. Hershey's milk chocolate and a touch of fig, along with some stale Maxwell House.

This is an average porter in every sense of the word. Faint coffee. Stale milk chocolate. A spittle of dark fruits - an afterthought, really. It doesn't taste bad by any means. Just... boring.

The mouthfeel is pretty thin but not out-of-line for a porter. It is fairly silky, which works with the chocolate tastes. The inoffensive palate makes for a pretty drinkable beer - but not too drinkable, as your risk falling asleep to it.

This is about as average as average can get. For the price of this 500mL bottle I could have gotten a fresh six-pack of the best American Porter - Boulevard Bully! Porter. That is an indefensible crime of pricing.

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Photo of Xul
4.07/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours an extremely dark brown with a thin, frothy mocha colored head. Retention isn't very good but some lacing is left behind.

S: Roasted malts up front, chocolate, a bit of coffee and some dark fruits - raisins and subtle dark cherries.

T: Roasted malts are prevalent again but dark fruits take a bigger role with raisins and cherries, along with some plums and figs. Chocolate and vanilla swirl around along with a bit of coffee. Sweet, but not cloying.

M: Moderate body with medium carbonation, has a good subtle chewiness but goes down smooth.

D: This is a really, really good porter...if it was easier to get, I could definitely drink more of this.

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Photo of movingtrain
4.55/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

1 pint 9 oz. bottle sampled from a 12 ounce snifter.

The bottle reads that this one was brewed in August of '08, and is best before August of '10--Batch 158. The back of the label reads, "four guys brewing in their spare time, on an absurdly small scale." Interesting. My bottle's label looks different from the one posted here...and perhaps the small volume creates a slightly different beer from batch to batch.

Pours a fine coffee-colored black. The head is there, like a light espresso crema, and is clinging to the sides of the glass.

The aroma gives off hints of honey, cloves, wood, smoke, coffee, chocolate, and figs. There is a slight astringency in the nose, but nothing that takes away from the aroma.

In the taste there are strong coffee notes, burnt wood, bitter chocolate, and brown sugar (light). Coffee is the dominating force here, with some nice roasted malty notes.

This is a unique porter. It is very well-balanced, bittersweet, and simply delicious. I'm not sure how small of a scale these guys brew on, but I hope to find this one again...it is well worth it.

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Photo of avalon07
4.6/5  rDev +22%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Poured from a bottle to an imperial pint glass. Had a black color and a completely thick consistency. There was a good inch of creamy, tan-colored, long-lasting head. Surprisingly, not much lacing.

S: A strong, sharp aroma of malt, coffee, dark fruit, and chocolate.

T: Tasted of coffee, raisins, dark chocolate, and roasted malt. Complex and flavorful, but it doesn't necessarily fit in with the typical American Porter style. Still, very tasty.

M: A lot of carbonation with a dry finish. Full-bodied, but never too heavy.

D: Extremely drinkable. One of the more interesting porters I've tried recently.

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Photo of charlzm
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed April 5, 2010. Bottle labeled "batch 158 - brewed 08.05.08, best before 08.05.10"

Beer is a very dark yet clear brown. No highlights to speak of. Gentle pour results in a long-lasting light mocha colored foam skin.

The beer is quite aromatic. Mocha, chocolate, raisins. Sweet.

Mouthfeel is a touch thick and slightly chewy. Nice.

A light red grape flavor is a grace note amongst the dominant mocha and raisin flavors. Slight metallic note is there, but no deal breaker. Chocolate/coffee style bitterness present. No discernable hop presence, but that's not surprising given the style and age of this beer (20 months).

Despite the stronger than usual flavor and moderately high ABV (6.5%), I finished this bottle with no trouble at all.

Slightly different but no less enjoyable than my previous encounter with this beer...
Consumed on 08/12/08.

Pours very dark clear brown, leading to a three finger tan head which overflowed the glass despite my not-quite-careful-enough pour. Plenty of small bubbles rise through the beer up to the surprisingly rocky head.

Smells of dark roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, cocoa and... mint? A bit grassy and clean. Hop presence?

Porter style mouthfeel (as in thin). Flavor is rich: soft cocoa and sharp black coffee with restrained bitterness on finish. Some molasses as well. Very flavorful. Maybe too much for a whole bottle...

App - 4
Sm - 4
T - 4
MF - 3.5
Dr - 3.5

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Photo of jwc215
3.7/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 208 - Brewed 20.01.09, best before 20.01.11:

Despite a careful pour, the first pour foamed up - nearly all head - foamy tan. After pouring some, it continued to foam up a bit over the bottle. As it settles it reveals a dark brown brown - nearly black - body. Subsequent pours were better.

The smell is of licorice/anise, mild smoky earthiness, a bit sour, with some coffee/toffee.

The taste is of chocolate, toffee, some licorice/anise with coffee notes. Overall, it is on the sweet side, though would be better if some mild sourness didn't fade in and out. It has a smoky touch in the finish.

Spritzy carbonation is rather annoying, but still holds up to medium-to-full bodied. Alcohol shows a bit.

Not too crazy about the sourish notes, especially in the nose, but there's enough goodness going on besides it. Also could be less spritzy. An "interesting" brew - wouldn't get again for the hefty price of nearly $10 a 500 ml bottle.

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Photo of drpimento
4.44/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

MMMm mmm, tasty beer! Bottle gave a nice little pop when opened. Poured with a lively big foamy tan head that quickiy settled. No lace. Color is an opaque. brownish black. Aroma is a rich, heady blend of roasty malt, dark ripe fruits, and tree bark. Flavor's about the same and a slight hint of sharpness. Body is neat - a little on the light side with great carbonation which makes it more drinkable. Finish is sweet and like the flavor at first and tapers off with some bitter roastiness. Session beer.

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Photo of JohnnyP3
4.07/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

50cl bottle. Batch 219. Brewed on 4 Apr 2009, best before 4 Apr 2011. Alcohol appears to clock in at 6.5%. This bottle includes the title "Norse Porter", probably because it was purchased in Norway vice the US. Am I brilliant or what?

A: Pours very dark brown, dark chocolate-like, with a rich, creamy looking tan head. Heavy carbonation produces a substantial foam topping that gradually subsides to a nice one-finger width covering. Attractive lacing on the glass.

S: Very strong roasted malt smell, with chocolate and coffee mixed in. Some baker's chocolate and a little bit of a burnt twinge as well.

T: Who dropped a Hershey's bar in my beer? Seriously though, probably the most chocolate/coffee-tasting porter I've experienced. And a very delicious taste it is! Dark, hearty and earthy, just like the label on the bottle suggests. Rich and substantial. I can also taste some hints of dark fruits (raisons, dates) in the background of this multi-faceted porter. The fruits become more pronounced as I drink more deeply. A nice, contemplative brew.

M: As noted, strongly carbonated, so it produces a little bit of a zing in the mouth as you drink it. A bit crisp for my liking in this style of beer.

D: This is not a porter I would drink several of in a sitting. I could see quaffing a couple over the course of the evening and then falling into a deep slumber.

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Photo of BlackBearForge
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on: 08.05.08
Best before: 08.05.10

Norse Porter (I couldn't resist the name and it's one of the few Scandinavian beers with bottle dating I could find) pours deep dark black with dark ruby highlights when backlit. A huge large bubbled head builds quickly but falls equally quickly leaving no lacing.

The aroma is of sweetish dark malts with hints of chocolate, raisins and coffee.

Aside from the mouthfeel this porter tastes much like a big roasty stout. Dark bitter roasted malts dominate, only moderately sweet, with dark chocolate and coffee. Some woody oak like tannins along with loads of dark fruits, raisins, apricots and prunes and there is a touch of sourness, not unpleasant, in the finish which is also fairly bitter. Hop presence is minimal but noted with a bit of pineyness. Warming really opens this beer up smoothing out the robust roasted malts and minimizing the sourness. Definitely allow this beer to warm up to cellaring temps!

Mouthfeel is perhaps just a tad lighter than I'd prefer and the carbonation is quite robust. With warming the mouthfeel also improves becoming pretty much right where it needs to be.

Overall a very drinkable porter, very flavorful with its roasted malt and bitter chocolate character. A nice take on an American style, though with HaandBryggeriet's own touch added as well.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
2.12/5  rDev -43.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

From BeerAdvocate Magazine Volume II, Issue III:

Batch# 78. Massive light brown head. Lots of multi-sized bubbles hold a great head together. Over-carbonated but not a gusher. Very dark, pitch black. Smells of a compost heap, or a pot of beef stew with an acrid burnt charred wood nose. Lots of carbonation, which unfolds the beer pretty quick. A bit thin on the palate. Big fermentation twang up front of lemon, wheat and barley husk. Charred wood flavor runs right toward becoming acrid. Beefy with a dead yeast or cooked vegetable flavor.

On the road to undrinkable, at first sip there seemed to be a little bit of promise but as the off flavors unloaded onto the palate with each sip it was harder and harder to take on.

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Photo of SLeffler27
3.92/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Haandbryggeriet, what a name, pours dark walnut with a big, seriously rocky brown head. In the pint glass, it is dark brown, almost black, and passes no light. Batch 158 produced no lacing whatsoever.

A decadent chocolate late' introduces roasted grains then develops into molasses with some spruce. As it warms a toasted, almost burnt quality emerges. Very alluring!

The flavor opens with dominating grains, roasted character similar to strong black coffee. Where the faint bitterness comes from may be a mystery, but a sweet aftertaste initiates the finish before debate can begin, than subsides to reveal another layer of mild bitterness. Bakers chocolate reveals itself with warmth.

Creamy with a medium to full, almost syrupy body, this beer has a soft carbonation and no real presence of alcohol.

This could easily be the first or last beverage of the day. A perfect component to a vanilla float, the Norse have a real winner. Now if only I could pronounce the name.

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Photo of AltBock
3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

1 pt .9 oz bottle that has a burgundy colored label of a cool looking gold dragon ring. It looks like a ring a Viking would wear while raping and plundering a European village. On the edges of the picture and thumb and finger prints. Inside the ring is the name of the beer in vertical white letters. To the left is all the mandatory US information and a paragraph that talks about the beer and the brewery. There should be a squared plain white label on the back of the bottle. This label has the batch number, brewed date, best before date, ingredients, and a phone number. My bottle was from batch 78 which was brewed in May of 2007 and is good till May 2010.

Appearance: I had a beautiful and clean Ayinger Celebrator Pilsener glass waiting for this beer. Who's the joker who replaced my Porter with motor oil? I was hoping to try this beer, but I guess not. No, it wasn't oil, but it sure shared the same density and pitch black color. I poured an inch or two of beer into my glass and up rises this huge dark mocha head of foam. After the head of foam calmed down, it was still a good size. It had great slow retention that left behind a thick creamy mocha film and a few tiny blots of lace. As you can tell from my words, the color of the beer was great and the head of foam was equally impressive.

Smell: This Norwegian Porter's aroma favored the sweet scent of brown sugar. Lying in wait behind the brown sugar was roasted malts, a gentle touch of roasted coffee beans, a hint of dark chocolate, a little citrus hop zest, black cherry, plum, and then it finished up with this unique scent of chocolate covered bananas. I don't know where that aroma came from, but I liked it in this beer. In the end, it was a nice sweet aroma yet roasted aroma with some banana hiding in it.

Taste: While the aroma was sweet and roasted, the taste was just roasted with a tiny speck of sweetness. It was a roasted taste with plenty of dark roasted malts, a hint of dark roasted coffee beans, a sprinkle of brown sugar, a touch of bitter dark chocolate, and a variety of dark fruits. My taste buds were able to pick out a little plum, black cherry, and a fig or two. This initial taste was fine and dandy like sour candy, but what ruined the taste for me was the last two flavors. The final part of the taste was overly yeasty with a little rust. Unlike the chocolate banana in the aroma, these two flavors didn't need to be in there.

Mouthfeel: This was a medium bodied Porter with loads of carbonation and a roasted and yeasty aftertaste. Not as much yeast showed up in the aftertaste as it did in the initial taste. Along with the taste of yeast, there was also dark roasted malts, roasted coffee beans, dark chocolate, and a touch of rust. This aftertaste will linger on for only a few seconds and then it's gone forever.

Drinkability: A very good sweet smelling roasted tasting Norwegian Porter. Like any other beer, it has its ups and downs. For it's upsides, it has to be the appearance and the aroma. The downsides have to be the overly yeasty taste at the end, the taste of rust, and the price. This beer is going to be expensive anywhere you go. Is it worth it? Uh...I really can't say. Let's just say that if you got money burning a hole in your wallet, yeah go for it. If not, this beer can be missed.

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Photo of mdagnew
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle bought online from the Cracked Kettle, Amsterdam...

Poured pretty much pitch black even when held up to the light... Dirty burnt brown head poured a big, thick and bubbly then faded fairly quickly to decent thickish covering.. lots of patchy sticky lacing...

Aroma - Roasted chocolate maltiness, strong charred coffee beans, liquorice, leathery and slightly sooty, toasted bread, burnt toffee, treacle, earthy / cardboard hints, roasted nuts, some sticky plum and date fruitiness, black cherries, some alcohol just noticeable...

Taste - Lots of charred roasted dark chocolate malt bitterness, sooty, some piney hops, very earthy, strong espresso coffee, dried coffee grains, toasted nutty sweetness, some treacle, faint anise...

Feel - Smooth initially then a spritzy sharpness come through... medium bodied... a pretty quaffable brew at 6%...

Overall - A pretty good Porter... definitely recommended...

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Photo of corby112
4.23/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown/black color with some very slight mahogany edges when held to a light source and a huge three finger frothy tan head. Very good retention, slowly fading into a lasting cap that leaves a good bit of chunky lacing.

Roasted malt aroma with hints of chocolate, caramel, oatmeal, toffee, nut and coffee.

Once again the roasted malt dominate the flavor with hints of oatmeal, dark chocolate, roasted coffee, hazelnut, burnt toast and a sweet dry finish.

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Photo of GeezLynn
4.04/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours black with a weak white head that retreats to the edges of my tulip immediately.

Smell is refreshingly unique, black licorice and molasses.

Very smokey. Taste is heavy on the burnt malt flavors, caramel and molasses and not much in the way of coffee or chocolate.
Thinner ale feel to it, and more carbonation than I would prefer.

It's definitely an easy drinking porter - some nut-brown characteristics with porter smokeyness. Not a huge, rich American porter, but by no means dull like some of them out there either.

Good session porter.

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Photo of rtepiak
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

got to say... had two different beers from this brewery in one week and they were easily one of my favorites of the year.

had the porter at cellar temp. rather warm... about 55 degrees and it did what i had hoped... opened up the beer substantially.

the pour and look is as it should be with a rather large head. a nose expected of a decent american porter of chocolate and coffee. but there was a wonderful drinkable about it. cream but easy going. had it in mid july after all. the palate was like a candy bar without the tooth aching sweet. the sweet gave the beer body. and the finish had a wonderful quality of smoke that wasn't at all leathery or sour.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.33/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Batch #78
Brewed: May 07
Best Before: May 10

Pours a very nice black color, very nice carbonation, awesome two-finger plus creamy tan head, with tons of nice thick creamy sticky lacing. The nose is malty, with some very nice chocolate/toffee notes. The taste is malty, slightly sweet/bitter, lots of chocolate/toffee. Medium body, with a dry/bitter finish. Very drinkable, this is one fine American Porter, and another tasty brew from HaandBryggeriet.

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Photo of Richardberg
4.53/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: dark brown/black liquid, but not thick, just ale-like. Enormous head of dense brown foam that lingered and lingered.

S: mocha, brown sugar, smoke, variety of toasty grains, hint of hops

T: surprisingly, just as intense and diverse as the nose. malts are crisp and forward without being sweet, then the alcohol bites a little, and it finishes slightly bitter.

M: bubbly and fun, while also coating quite well for a porter that doesn't look viscous

D: expensive to import an American Porter all the way from Norway, but this one is worth the journey.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.95/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16.9 ounce bottle, Batch 138, brewed Jan 2008, best before Jan 2010. Served in a snifter, the beer pours dark brown/black with about an inch and a half tan head. Head retention is pretty good, but not much lacing. It smells like roasted malt, smoke, chocolate and a bit of coffee. The taste is similar to the aroma, it tastes like roasted and burnt/charred malt, smoke, chocolate, coffee and some toffee and lactose. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's creamy and a bit slick but it does have high carbonation, a bit too much for my liking. Drinkability is good as the beer is smooth, but due to the high carbonation it could be better. Overall I liked this beer, I'd try it again in the future. Not a bad choice at all.

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Photo of Gmann
3.85/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a near black color with a nice puffy tan head that settled into a light cap. Lightly roasted malt and caramel malt with a touch of wood, a bit nutty. Nice aroma for a porter. Nice mix of roasted and caramel malts, hints of charred wood, and tart lemon. A bit bolder than most American porters. The feel is a bit chewy yet astringent, soft carbonation with an overall roasted malt bitterness. Probably a bit thicker than your traditional American porter. I was hoping for a lighter porter than what I got. This is somewhere between a Baltic porter and an American/English porter. Thin out the body a touch, add some prickly carbonation and you have a winner.

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Photo of sliverX
4.4/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured a very dark brown/black that allows no light to pass with a decent tan head that hung around fairly well at a bit more than a film with very good lacing
smell is all semi sweet chocolate
taste is big roasted malts and semi sweet chocolate again, bitter finish not sure if its the burnt malt or hops...
mouthfeel is medium to full bodied and I can only drool at this ever being offered on a tap, can feel a bit of the carbonation
drinkability a very well done porter leaning on a stout though can't get enough of this though

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Porter from HaandBryggeriet
Beer rating: 59.5% out of 100 with 116 ratings
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