Akevitt Porter (Barrel-Aged Porter) | HaandBryggeriet

Akevitt Porter (Barrel-Aged Porter)Akevitt Porter (Barrel-Aged Porter)
172 Ratings
Akevitt Porter (Barrel-Aged Porter)Akevitt Porter (Barrel-Aged Porter)

Brewed by:

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Matured on Aquavit casks.

Added by Jeffo on 09-07-2009

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 172 |  Reviews: 107
Photo of Diomede
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of WastingFreetime
4.12/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

A. Very dark in appearance, opaque in that way where you can't quite tell if it is a very very very dark brown or if it is truly black. Two fingers of finely bubbled tan head which lasts for around five minutes and leaves some pretty nice looking lace streaks in it's wake.

S. At first whiff I get a hit of Pear Eau du Vie but that is replaced with a strange kind of char-burnt morning bun scent mixed with a bouquet of dried medicinal herbs soaked in a quarter shot of hillbilly moonshine. Honestly. This is the best way I know how to describe the smell, as bizarre as it sounds.

T. Acidic spice and tartness hit at first like an extremely herbal gin shot; followed by the thick chocolate porter burst followed by a brief sort of soy sauce saltiness with a drying booze finish.

M. Semi viscous and on the lighter side.

Really interesting take on a porter and definitely worth checking out if you are a fan of unusual barrel treatments.

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Photo of mjtiernan
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of jlb502
4/5  rDev -0.2%

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

A: looks pitch black, like a stout, with a nice thick temporary head. The beer moves around in the glass like a much "lighter beer" (less viscous)

S: sweet malt, caramels at first, burnt notes; the alcohol overtook the bulk of the other odors once it hit me

T: this is a different-tasting beer, and definitely going to be an individual taste thing. I have never had a akevitt, and I suppose that is what I'm tasting here. Taste of herbs, carraway, and herbal vodka, but in a porter format. It is not as sweet as it looks like it might be, but more on the bitter side. The bitterness has a crisp herbal edge that I found appealing. I like gin, single malt whiskies, and herb vodka, and this beer has some taste-connections with them. I would imagine that if you don't like hard alcohols like those, you might not like this beer. But if you enjoy strongly flavored (more bitter/herbal than sweet) spirits then this beer is a worthy buy. It's bitterness is also like espresso (without sugar), but it has a mellowness that tones down the astringency.

M: a much "thinner" drink than it looks, and palate cleansing - carbonation and alcohol make it sharp and crisp, only a vague linger of the sweeter maltiness.

O: I was pleased. This is a hard-drinking beer. I like sweet stouts and porters, no doubt, but this style of beer appeals to a different taste set, which may or may not agree with you. This being my first Norwegian beer AND my first akevitt barrel-aged beer, I lack a strong frame of reference, but I am inclined to say this is a really cool beer, and certainly worth a buy.

My question: why is a Norwegian porter aged in akevitt barrels (a traditional Scandinavian spirit) considered an "American Porter"?

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.68/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle bought at Buy-Rite Liquors in Cranbury, NJ, for, huh, $9.99? I was just too curious to pass this up...

Appearance: The pour is heavy and carbonated, producing a three-finger coffee-colored head so thick and sticky you could scoop it out and eat it straight up. Retention is quite good- at least one full finger of that head remains throughout, leaving some serious lacing.

Smell: Not so good in this department, although if you let it warm up it will reward you... quite opaque, with that "clean", herbal kick you get from vodka. Sort of like bitters in a cocktail, or the brine I prepare for my pork belly. Booze at the end, along with some milk chocolate and wood.

Taste: The aquavit barrel becomes ever more pronounced, with a bigger herbal kick. Now it definitely feels like I'm drinking a vodka-barreled brew! Booze, chocolate, spice and more alcohol to boot... not so balanced. Very roasty, bitter and dry. Makes me think of a messed-up imperial stout.

Mouthfeel: Full carbonation and flavor, a tad too harsh on the booze/barrel/aquavit side but still yummy. Quite "aquavit-y" at the end, with a hoppy/bitter/dry kick that remains throughout. Water, please!

Overall: Needless to say, I love the experiment. Do I love the beer? Not necessarily... a little harsh around the edges, not so easy to drink. Ended up being a chore and not a joy to drink. Will not revisit, but glad I tried it once.

Oh, I paired it with a habanero dark chocolate that had me begging for fresh cold milk!!! :-)

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Photo of twiggamortis420
4.09/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle of batch 288, bottled 23.07.10. Pours a rich black color with a bubbly brown head. Fades pretty quick and lacing is not all that great.

Never had aquavit before, but I can definitely smell some liqueur-type, spiced alcohol. I guess caraway is the most common spice used, and I can see that here, along with hefty roast and general dark chocolate porter aroma.

Taste still flashes some heat, but remains pretty smooth overall thanks to a moderate sweetness and coffee-esque roastiness. Fair amount of bitterness and drying effect on the finish. Some dark fruit creeps out as it warms. Interesting and complex brew that throws out some new and exciting flavors along the way. Very recommended.

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

A - This beer pours a really dark brown color that lets no light pass through. It has a small finger of tan head on top. The head falls to a small ring pretty quickly, and leaves behind some specs of lace on the glass.

S - It smells of dark toasted malts right away. There are some big chocolate and coffee aromas. There is some fruitiness and some sort of a weird alcohol aroma that I am going to attribute to the akevett barrels.

T - The taste starts off with some roasted malt bitterness. The coffee and chocolate notes that stood out in the nose are present. There is some woody alcohol flavor that has some spice flavor to it as well. The finish has some dryness to it, and leaves a bit of lingering roasted bitterness on the palate. Some booziness is present here as well.

M - This has a pretty full body and lower carbonation. There is some nice roasted malt bitterness, as well as some sweetness. There is also some alcohol warmth in the finish.

O - This has good drinkability. It is most definitely a sipper, but the flavor is quite nice and interesting. It is a solid porter to begin with, and I think the akevitt barrels add a nice complexity and interesting flavor. I wish I could have tried the actual spirit before, so I could get a better taste for the flavors the barrel would impart on the beer, but oh well. Overall, I really enjoyed this beer, and i would buy it again.

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Photo of pmarlowe
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled 07/23/10 (Batch #288). Tulip glass.

A: Pours black with two fingers of dense, dark brown head. Very good retention, minimal lacing.

S: Roasted malt, milk chocolate, undertone of creamy vanilla, and a tiny bit of anise and spice.

T: Roasted malt, a little anise, some alcohol taste, finishing with some melted dark chocolate, finishing with a mild coffee bitterness.

M: Rich. Medium body and high Coca Cola, harsh carbonation.

O: Good porter, not much barrel presence besides a little anise, but there's not enough of that to really differentiate itself from a normal porter. A little plain for the price (~$13).

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Photo of soulgrowl
4.41/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

It's starting to get cold and dark in London again – no time like the present to start drinking the kind of strong, rich stouts that made me fall in love with beer in the first place. Akevitt Porter has a thick, dark chocolate black body with a very shy, milk chocolatey head of small but volatile bubbles. Rich with oak and dark malts, the aroma is a mine of chocolate, malted milk, coffee, molasses, figs, vanilla, walnuts, caramel, spiced with plenty of caraway, anise, tobacco, and floral hops. Increasingly smoky as it warms, and very interesting; the akavit is not subtle but well-incorporated with the base malt aromas. Tangy and earthy on the palate, with a crisp caraway entrance and a long, luscious chocolate finish. Juicy and rich yet sharp and bitter, this one balances coffee, citrus, licorice, oak, and red wine – and yet it isn't quite as complex as the nose led me to believe. Even so, it's tremendously mouthwatering and a wonderful nightcap for a cold late summer evening. Possibly an excellent match for game, assuredly for chocolate and blue cheese.

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Photo of schwaeh
3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 288 bottled 7-23-10

A: Pours black with a frothy 1 finger head. The dense head fades very slowly. Very good carbonation, especially for a -bal.

S: Big chocolate, anise, cocoa, peat, and other complexities from the Aquavit. It seems that aquavit is a different animal than most liquor, I'm digging it quite a bit. The liquor is really well integrated and compliments the porter great. Soft and smooth all the way.

T: Very smooth here, the alcohol seems nonexistent. Roasted malt, chocolate, and light whiskey flavors make the body up. This has a sweet and smokey jerky-like flavor that BA porters tend to get. Everything works well making this one of the most easy drinking %10 beers I've come across.

M: Thicker side of medium. Has a nice prickly carbonation that softens this porter up and makes it creamy.

O: This is much better than expected(I'm glad, cuz it wasn't cheap). I was worried from others that this would be real boozy but alas this is easy drinking and very pleasant. My only gripe would be that silly beef jerky flavor that develops. They do it right in Norway.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A very nice idea, Norse farmhouse porter aged in aquavit barrels, and the result is very tasty. Pours black and slightly viscous with a a caramel brown head that fades to a ring and a swirl. That seems fine for a strong barrel aged beer. Smells sweet to start and then with lots of dry licorice notes and a bit of bitter chocolate. I don't smell a lot of caraway or herbs. The taste exhibits more of the caraway and herbal notes, particularly on the finish where you get a big hit of spicy caraway and herbs as well as a dose of alcohol. Almost reminiscent of chili peppers. The rest of the taste is filled out by roasted notes, licorice, and quite a bit of cocoa. Slightly hot, with a nasal clearing effect on the finish. This is an extremely interesting beer that would be perfect in the dead of winter. Fascinating.

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Photo of Bung
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml July 2010 bottling.
Murky dark brown pour with a wonderful brown layer of foam. Retained really well.

Roast, chocolate milk, some boozy oak. Some earthy yeast tones.

Taste, a big beefy roasty with dark chocolate beast. Coffee, cocoa and peat later. The barrel is really a subtle complementary.

Almost creamy smooth, coats well enough. Not too warm either. This drank easy for the size.

Right up my alley, an excellent example to me. The dark brews from Mr. Haand are fantastic.

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

enjoyed this at a barrel aged tasting on 2011-08-06.

dark color, to style in most ways...smell is funky and dominated by peat. there is porter in there as well, but peat all day. lots of roast on the porter. actually very nice smelling. very different tasting. super peaty again, but the peat works on the porter. the mouth is ok and overall this was unique and interesting but very peat all over it...so if you don't dig peat, don't go near this.

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Photo of alexhahn82
3.08/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Batch 288 - A run of 3240 Bottles - Bottled 23-07-10 -- 9.6%

A - Rich rich black with a hint of dark red to it. Small .25 finger head, not much lacing if any.

S - chocolate, vanilla, sweet with a hint of alcohol.

T/M - Chocolate that is cut with and almost Fernet (alcohol) like quality to it. The herb flavor is definitely strong, but not in a scary overpowering sort of way. Creamy medium viscosity.

O - Overall a very tame, and I mean that in a good way, sort of Porter. This is well played, they do not let the soul of the beer escape them in that its clearly a porter, as far as flavor goes I would say 70% traditional chocolaty Porter, with a 30% interpretation of the Aquavit Barrels.

PP (Price Point) - $13 for a 25oz bottle is pretty damn good in my opinion. Very well played for a beer exported over here to the States, they didnt slam the Aquavit down our throats, a strong 9.6% ABV is damn good, seek, destroy!

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Photo of Urbancaver
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark drk brown with a nice tan head. Looks very appealing appearance. Smells roasty and nutty and very wonderful. The nose is top notch. Tastes Nutty and roasty. Lots of great malt characteristics. Overall one of my favourite porters! Something i would love to have again

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Photo of ColdPoncho
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for sharing Beerandbourbon

A - Black body. Just dark. Thick ring of grey/brown head.

S - smoky wood, you can smell the akevitt, coffee, dark malts. Nice smell.

T - Woody, dry, sweet chocolate, bitter hops and coffee, smoked meats. Pretty good.

M - nice robustness here. a bit dry. Pretty good.

O (D) - this is pretty interesting. A tasty beer.

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Photo of kiddynamite920
3.58/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Served near room temperature. Batch 225, bottled 9-15-09. Nice tan, booming and fluffy head rose from the beer and gracefully receded to about a fingers worth of frothy, tight bubbles. About as dark brown as you can get, not quite black.

S: Full of raisin and dark roasted malt aromas. The Aquavit barrels really set this beer off though. Definitely get the wood character, with some spicy herb aromas. Still quite boozy for aged a bit. The base of this beer is fantastic for it's style, but I think the Aquavit barrels may have been a bit too harsh on the beer.

T: A bit jumbled here too. Again, the underlying porter has great character and flavor but it seems masked by the spicy and herby flavors imparted from the barrels. Takes on a flavor reminiscent of whiskey. The smokey wood flavor is a nice touch on the porter, just cant get over the boozy and spicy thing going on here.

M: Pretty full on the palate with a nice vibrant carbonation kick towards the end. Almost cuts the heavy body back to finish quite nicely. Flavors of deep roasted malts and some wood linger long after each sip.

O: I am impressed at the creativity of the beer and it was worth the effort of trying new things in the beer world. Not sure these flavors work too well with each other, but this certainly is a very nice porter. I feel that a bit more restraint with the aging and cutting the abv back a bit would do wonders for this beer.

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Photo of jampics2
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into a snifter. Purchased at Lizardville for $9.99.

This beer looks really nice in the glass. The dark color is a mixture of brown and black with just a bit of light creeping in around the edges. A nice 1 finger off-white head stuck around for a bit then subsided, leaving little lace.

The smell is awesome but a bit unbalanced. There's a huge amount of roasted malt, giving coffee and chocolate impressions. There's some smoothness too, without a ton of hops. The lack of balance comes from the barrel, which has added some herbs like caraway and coriander than make this seem out of place. Slightly boozy. Overall, interesting and pretty expressive.

The taste is also quite unique. The Akvavit barrels have added some oak notes as well as some herb and booze. This is not dominant on the taste; instead, the roasted dark malt does a terrific job of blending with the barrel notes to produce an interesting take on the barrel aged porter. Some nice chocolate, vanilla, herb, dark fruit, and even a touch of Scotch whisky emerge. Not too boozy and very interesting.

The mouthfeel was creamy and medium bodied but a bit lacking in terms of carbonation. Overall, I really dug this beer and will hopefully pick up another bottle. Well worth the price if you're into strange barrels, as this is very accessible and well aged.

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.03/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 288 9.6% abv.

Black as the abyss with a an awesome dark brown head that can sneak over the rim of your glass if you don't pay attention. Great retention of foma for a great looking porter.

Creamy chocolate, roasted coffee beans, spicey warm alcohol, and herbs that I can't specifically name. Not your normal smelling porter.

The taste The atste starts with dark chocolate, heavy cream, and some warm booze. The middle has the boozey taste and feel develop into the more herbal Aquavit, at least I'm assuming where the herbal taste comes from. The finishes is warm from the alcohol but real creamy on teh palate. The creamy palate seems to develop the dark chocolate flavor from the start to a milk chocolate with some medium roasted coffee.

Boozey at times, but this lets you know it was aged in liqor barrels. The flavors from the barrels mix well with the taste of the porter. Making a very unique tasting beer in this style.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.47/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 288
Total bottles: 3240
Bottled 7/23/10

Pours a pitch black with a 2 inch khaki head that fades to a small cap. Good rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. There is some sediment floating in this beer after the pour. Smells of roasted dark malts, coffee, and some spices. Taste is of rich coffee, roasted dark malt, and slight cocoa powder on the finish. Very subtle bitterness on the palate after each sip. Good mouthfeel with a great level of carbonation that is bubbly yet smooth. Overall, this is a very tasty beer. I have never had Akevitt but I have read that it is a spirit with spices and herbs. I get some hints of that in the smell and taste of this beer but it is definitely in the background of a very good porter by itself.

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Photo of andrewinski1
3.57/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip. Nice thick 2 finger head atop a pitch black body. The lacing is nice and sticky.

The aroma has a nice amount of bitter malt and a little bit of vanilla and pepper. The oak aroma here is unique. I can smell the alcohol faintly.

The flavor does not quite yield the complexity of flavor implied by the aroma. The taste starts out with a smooth oak and vanilla taste, followed by bitter char.

The body is lighter than expected, and the carbonation is mild.

I liked this one, it's a little lighter in body than preferred, but enjoyable nonetheless.

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Photo of Gmann
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a near black color with a dense toasted khaki colored head that settled into a sparse cap.

The aroma is of a subtle milk chocolate and vanilla, tootsie roll, with some alcohol vapors. There is a non-descript herbal characteristic, perhaps mint.

The taste is of a chocolatey porter. Nice roasted notes as well as a dash of coffee. There are some light herbal notes; juniper and spruce. A light sour punch in the end. This is more porter than anything else. The barrel aging seems subtle but does add a bit of booziness.

The feel is moderate to well bodied with prickly caronbation. Drinks well but there is a roasty bitterness that weighs it down.

Traditional porter with some added notes from the barrel aging. Perhaps a bit too much ABV. A good pickup, interesting. Seems the herbal flavors balance out the malt.

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Photo of rudzud
4.02/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Saw this at KJ Baarons and wanted to give it a try. I'd heard of Akavit before and was really curious to see how this would work with a porter. Surprisingly not bad. Bottled 9/15/09.

A - Poured into a Duvel tulip a deep, rich brown almost black with a fizzy two finger light mocha head that sunk down to a quarter inch and never really got less than that.

S - Nice chocolate notes and coffee. Fairly typical porter notes but then the Akavit hits onthe nose. Hard to describe really, its just a really nice slightly herbal spirit aroma. Clearly this is aged, and clearly this has double digit ABV.

T - This is nice. Good chocolate and coffee notes with more of that herbal Akavit quality. Theres that nice burnt carmel malt quality too. The strong ABV kick though is maybe still a bit too harsh for me.

M - Really didnt care for this. On the first pour this sucker was way too carbonated for me. As it sat though in the tulip this mellowed out. It never really became creamy though, which is what I assosciate a good porter with.

O - Overall, this is a nice, tasty porter. This wouldnt be a go-to type porter for me but during the fall or winter, or maybe even an early spring, I could see turning to this. That Akavit really adds something nice to this porter.

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Photo of wyattshotmaker
3.67/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

poured into a tulip, black with small dark tan head.

aroma is burnt sugar, caramel, touch of smoke. boozy for sure.

burnt toast, caramel, roasty, smokey, slightly spicy on the finish. touch of oxidized peat i suppose.not sweet, just enough to balance out the roasted flavor. not sure how much of the barrel treatment affected this but it does have a certain je ne sais quoi to it.

mouthfeel is medium bodied. this is alright, i really just wanted to try something from this brewery worth trying i suppose.

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Akevitt Porter (Barrel-Aged Porter) from HaandBryggeriet
Beer rating: 4.01 out of 5 with 172 ratings
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