Southampton Imperial Baltic Porter | Southampton Publick House

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very good
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Southampton Imperial Baltic PorterSouthampton Imperial Baltic Porter
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Southampton Publick House
New York, United States | website

Style: Baltic Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 02-13-2003

BEER STATS
Reviews:
331
Ratings:
377
Avg:
3.94
pDev:
11.42%
 
 
Wants:
36
Gots:
7
For Trade:
1
User Reviews
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Reviews: 331 | Ratings: 377
Photo of gbontrag
4.88/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This doesn't suck, it doesn't hiccup, burn, stink, or stick; it doesn't tease, it isn't cloying, it's not mellow, low-key, or over-the-top, and it's not boring. It's great!

Beautiful cascade-like rise in carbonation after the pour produces a thick mocha froth. Leaves a blanket of lace that slowly tears and slides down the oiled glass. Black with brown trim.
Aroma of cherry chocolate caramel vanilla, hand-tooled leather, chalk and homemade concord grape juice.
Tastes of chocolate syrup, vanilla ice cream mixed with molasses and chocolate malt powder, muscat grapes and blueberries.

It's perfectly sensual, balancing sweet and bitter, smooth and sharp, thick and thin... Man, if the bottle had arms and a whip I'd be butt naked and moaning.

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Photo of Imbiber
4.76/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Cask conditioned at the Waterfront Ale House, Brooklyn.

Very dark, almost black, with a healthy tan head which lasted the duration; good lacing on the glass too. Aroma was malty and a bit alcoholic. Taste was incredibly good: the rich flavour was packed with caramel and some licorice notes, with a good balancing sweet dark malt aspect. Quite chewy on the palate as if I was trying to taste every molecule of this great beer (I was!).

The finish had some alcohol warmth, and the chewy caramel aspect lingered as a very pleasant and long aftertaste.

'Awesome' is the word...

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Photo of doubleipa
4.76/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance was almost black. Frothy, light brown head that mostly vanished. Aroma was toasted, milk chocolate and mild coffee. A little toofee, as well. This was a really easy drinking beer and not overpowering. The coffee and chocolate aroma and taste reminded me of some RIS, but without the bite.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.7/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: The beer pours a black with a brown hue, a thin off-white head that fades quickly and not much lace.

S: Coffee & Chocolate aroma with malt and a little bit of fruit overtones mixed in.

T: Dark chocolate, roasted coffee, caramel and berry & raisin flavors all burst out as it hits your mouth, and then you get a faint bit of hops. As you continue to drink it you taste a pleasant combination of sweet bitter & sour all at once, very complex.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium-to-heavy body with light carbonation and it goes down very easy.

D: This is a very drinkable beer. It’s smooth and just so damn tasty. It’s not very filling either, so I could enjoy throwing down 2 or 3 bombers without a problem. I certainly enjoyed the complexity of the taste.

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Photo of rousee
4.69/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Black -dark purple color with a small head of dark tan foam. Head diminishes quickly and there is a minimal amount of lace left on the glass. The smell is just beautiful. A nice mixture of dark malts, almonds, cherries, chocolate etc.

Taste is similar to smell but with a bit of a vinous character coming through. It is nothing too strong though and seems to give a real nice warmth. Not especially hot at all. The mouthfeel is enveloping and pleasant--quite smooth.

Drinkability is about as high as one would expect for this style. A very nice beer.

It is contract brewed up in Saratoga Springs which I assume is the Mendocino brewing. I have had some Thos. Hooker stuff contract brewed up there and I gotta say they have done something right here as both this Southampton offering and the Hookers I have had from the Spa have been excellent. Good head brewer supervision maybe? This used to not be the case when the Red Tail first started coming out of Saratoga.

Anyway, I may have to go buy more of this tomorrow. Its excellent.

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Photo of shabbtastic
4.67/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured a deep dark brown with hints of ruby when held up to the light. Small tan head with traces of lacing.

S - Aroma of roasted coffee malts with hints of fig and molasses.

T - In line with the nose, coffee roasted malts on the tip of the tongue. Followed by a smooth stout character in the finish.

M - Slick and creamy. Full bodied, low carbonation made this very easy to drink.

D - Quite possible one of the best porters I've had. The mouth feel is fantastic and very easy to drink one after the other. Highly recommended.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
4.63/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Talk about the perfect pour... I poured into a British pint glass, and the head formed exactly at the "bump". Dark beige froth filled the rest of the glass at first, then quickly dropped down about half way and held on for dear life. It's going, but not easy. Body is black, with a bit of a "cola-like" look around the bottom edge.

A rich aroma of chocolate, expresso, and licorice is released immediately upon popping the cap, easily noticeable at arm's length.

Big start of chocolate and coffee, and the coffeeshop has a candy counter - bits of sweetness with a hint of alcohol that is noticeable but not off putting. Flavorful but not overpowering. Slow finish with no alcohol afterburn.

Smooth, rich mouthfeel coats everything.

Surprising easy drinking. It's rich, but slides down nicely.

A great dessert or nightcap beer.

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Photo of Gavage
4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a deep dark blackish brown color with a decent two finger tan head. Some spotty lacing develops through the sesssion.

Smell: mostly roasted malts and licorice. Very pleasant.

Taste: what a great flavorful baltic porter. Roasted malts, bitter chocolate, licorice, molasses, and mild alcohol is rounded out with a nice bitterness.

Mouthfeel: slighty heavier in body than other basic porters, and has a smooth and slightly dry mouthfeel. The flavor tones linger long into the aftertaste.

Drinkability: superbly drinkable, one of the most enjoyable porters I have had. Must find this one and give it a try.

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Photo of ommegangpbr
4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Seems to be the first of their XXII series (according to their website).
Looks like a porter; pours a deep brown into chalice and has a dark cola color when held to the light. Smells nice with some mild malt and roasted smells.
The taste on this one is really quite exceptional. Very, very smooth. Nothing over powering; all those caramel and toffee tastes (as well as a depth of other flavors) are all in amazing balance. It has got some hops bite in the finish as well.
The mouthfeel could stand to be a slight bit more bubbly in my mind but this is one beer I'd be happy to drink all night.
I hope I can find this creation again.

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Photo of BeerBeing
4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Presentation: 22oz brown glass US generic "bomber" bottle, gold/white/navy on beige label, neck medallion

Appearance: opaque mahogany color, large tan head, good sticky lacing

Smell: chocolate, caramel, fruitness, some roasted malt and yeast

Taste: full body, creamy and very smooth mouth feel, sweet malt, bitter chocolate, coffee, caramel, some hoppy bitterness close to the end, minor alcohol

Note 1: (from the label) Brewed and bottled by Southampton Bottling, Saratoga Springs, NY
Note 2: (from neck medallion) Our Imperial Baltic-Style Porter is inspired by the strong, dark brews exported from Great Britain to Eastern Europe in the 18th & 19th centuries. Rich and flavorful with upfront notes of chocolate, caramel & toffee.
Note 3: EXCELLENT brew, one of the best baltic porters available

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Photo of Bighuge
4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Almost black. Shimmers of clear dark ruby streaking are apparant and inviting. A thin cocoa colored dusting sits on top of the body. Soon it's a thin coating, but leaves an adequate amount of spotty lacing. Aroma is like milk chocolate, lactose, roasted malt goodness and caramel sweetness. Really nice. Velvet like smoothness is apparant from the start. Silky smooth. With a body checking in around medium, this beer is extremely drinkable. And the great flavor doesn't hurt either. Roasty bitterness is King. And then there's the chocolate accents. And the slight coffee contributions. And a little char. And... Impressive. I like a lot.

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Photo of RedDiamond
4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another luscious, artistic brew from Southampton. This one is deep walnut brown – just a half shade shy of opacity – with a thick lumpy tan head. It boasts a superb sherry-like aroma with abundant malt fruits. The taste also has parallels to sherry or port wine with a rich toffee finish.

The presence of alcohol lends the welcome texture of warmth, enhancing the sensuality of the smoky, ashen aftertaste. Not only are all properties abundant and refined, they are adamantly sustained for the duration of a pensive 22 oz. session.

 538 characters

Photo of rajendra82
4.57/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

XXII Reserve

Provided by orbitalr0x as part of BIF 30, this beer came in a 22 oz. bomber. When poured it looked dark brown to black with a body that appeared opaque at first glance, but revealed ruby highlights when held up against strong light. The beer came out sounding fizzy like a soft drink, and the head was foamy and one inch thick immediately after pouring. It died down to a more modest crown of bubbles shortly afterwards, and ended up as a thin ring by the time the glass was mostly consumed. Not much lacing to speak of either.

The aroma was very pleasing, with chocolate, caramel, dark fruits, and hops is a sweet harmony. The taste was similar, but with dark fruits playing the lead role, followed closely by the caramel. Lactic sourness was a good counterbalance to the sweet malts. Not many burnt or roasty flavors to speak of, except a little bit of burnt toast like astringent bitterness. Alcohol was quite warm and soothing.

The beer was very easy to drink despite the multitude of flavors. If I had to point out one flaw, it would be the thinness of the body when compared to other examples of the style. A well constructed beer that I wouldn’t mind having again.

 1,194 characters

Photo of SheepNutz
4.54/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Damn Kev, thanks for sharin' ho! 22oz. bomber poured into a snifter. It pours a dark jet black color with one finger of medium tan head. The smell is just incredible. It has this rich caramel sweetness that no other beer has been able to match. Hints of toffee and alcohol meld in there, and it just seems perfect for me. Even a hint of wood is coming out as it warms. The taste is full of coffee, chocolate, and caramel (aka awesome!). A hint of vanilla bean and alcohol on the finish. Brilliant. The mouthfeel is just a little light and oily. The drinkability is great for 7.5%. A damn tasty beer, thanks again Kev!

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Photo of NCSUdo
4.51/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle

A: Deep black, with a few hints of ruby, under an inch plus of tan head. Good lace and retention.

S: Smells of rich malt, a little nutty, chocolate, sweet.

T: Pretty sweet up front, a little bit of roasted malt in the finish, slightly bitter, some chocolate and coffee mixed in, even some fruit, very slight hint of alcohol. Very good taste.

M/D: Full bodied, low carbonation, creamy. Good drinkability, sipper but easy to drink. A really excellent beer.

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

Appears a dark caramel brown hue forms with a tan lucious head with streaks of lacing. Aroma contains deep plum and other alcohol laced fruits dark roasted malts with big layers of cocoa and coffee notes also carries along some herbal hop notes that solidify the aroma. Taste is full with more layers of chocolate cake mix and coffee beans which the roasty bitterness is then splashed with layers of plump fruit and phenolic alcohol notes plump raisins come through hop flavor is mild with a touch of herbalness all in all this one is welcomed by the imbiber. Mouthfeel med-full bodied low chugging carbonation goes down nicely very smooth and creamy on the palate. Drinkability high quality nice overall character for the Baltic Porter style easy drinking compared to some more aggressive approaches on the style yet a 22 ounce portion is definitely ample.

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

I've heard so many great things about the Southampton Publick house and I've been dying to try one of their beers for awhile now, so thanks to my trip to NY for this one and Half Time the greatest place to buy beer I've ever seen for having it. This beer pours a very dark brown and leaves a thin tan lace that disappates quickly. The smell is of roasted chocolate and nuts, followed by a whiff on caramel malty sweetness that almost salivates your mouth. The taste finally! hits you with some slight carbonation, then the taste of chocolate with some fig fruit essence, it starts on your palate with some caramel sweetness then gives you a little bittersweet chocolate hop finish. Overall fantastic for the style.

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

This was from a 22oz 2004 edition bottle with black foil wrapped cap, sampled on 12/17/04. This pours out a pitch black with a huge light tan head being fed by constant bubbles rising to the top. The head sticks around for a while leaves rings and clumps of lace around the glass. Thick chocolate covered aroma with plenty of dark ripe fruitiness underneath. Notes of roastiness, coffee and other things all mix in as well for one rich delicious smelling beer. Taste starts off with bittersweet dark chocolate cover fruitiness. Roasted malt and coffee were both present in good quantities. Ends on a chocolate covered fruit note, very pleasant. Body is a little more than medium with a creamy smooth feel in you mouth and going down. Very tasty stuff that I could put down all day, easy drinking for me. Such a tasty brew that you should definitely pick it up if you come across it. Thanks to slander for giving me the chance to sample this.

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Photo of medic25
4.5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a rich dark brown/black color, with very little in the way of a head. Faint aroma, mostly malty. Taste is wonderful; quite sweet, with a significant flavor of toffee and chocolate blending with the roast malt base. Extremely drinkable, this is a much lighter beer than it first let's on. My first experience with Southampton beers, and they certainly made a great first impression.

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

The beer pours a deep dark black color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great. It has a dark malt scent that is heavy in crystal, chocolate, and roasted malts. It's sweet with hints of chocolate and dry roasted aroma. The taste is awesome. It has a smooth black and chocolate malt flavor; sweet and earthy. It goes down easy and finishes chocolatey with a dry earthy aftertaste. The mouthfeel is great. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn fine beer. It has everything I'm looking for; a great drinker.

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

Very dark brown, almost completely opaque, with faint chestnut highlights. It poured with a thin, light brown head that didn't want to disappear. Very fine bubbles formed sheets on the glass during each sip (a few remained each time as well). It had a rich malty aroma that's reminiscent of better dopplebocks, with delicate roasted and cocoa notes and a hint of anise. Mellow flavour, still full of malt. Roast, chocolate, and licorice blend together for a pleasant balance. There's also some bitterness here that appears towards the end and lingers for a while in the finish, along with some dry roastiness. Refined texture that feels lighter than it is. Tight carbonation with slight dryness. This is a great beer and one that I thoroughly enjoyed.

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

Dark, stained woody color. Ample head. Chocolatey, malted milk balls aroma. Alcohol as the beer warms. Burnt caramel. Black, sugar-less malts. Chocolate malt.

Everything you'd expect bumped up to the next level. Smooth, creamy chocolatey flavor. Mildly astringent and fairly dry considering the sweetness up front. M&M...melts in your mouth. Like buttah.

This blurs the lines between stout, porter, and baltic porter. It's dark, delicious, and drinkable -- another amazing product from Southampton.

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Photo of Fish113d
4.49/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle chilled to about 50 degrees into a large tulip glass. Milky foam sits atop of a dark brown to black oily body. Surface layer of milky head quickly dissipates to an oily surface with just a bit of lacing around the edge.
Alcohol quickly hits my nose along with the smell of scotch whisky (a bit) and of bakers chocolate. Quite a bit of toffee hits also. Chocolate malts are the main feature on the nose but the buttery toffee smell really comes through here. Nice!
After eating a brownie, I decide to sip this one. A rich chocolate flavor arrives along with some burnt roasted malts. It really reminds me of a Heath bar without the fun crunch! The swallow is smooth, while the alcohol is definitely there it doesn't take over and permeate my senses. Maybe one of the best beers I've tasted this year (it is early though '07). Some sting hits the tip of my tongue from the alcohol phenols, but the body is nice and smooth; very full and chewy. The finish is a little dry with the alcohol sticking around a bit. This is a very drinkable, warming, and yummy treat for the winter season. The only knock on it is that after finishing a bottle or two, you'll be on the floor ending your fun drinking of this one. I'd definitely like to get my hands on another bottle and age it a year or two and see how she breathes.

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Photo of barknee
4.48/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Southampton Imperial Porter pours an almost opaque blackish-red color with a “wafer-thin” mocha colored head. The nose has a deep-brooding asphalt-tar component, with hints of licorice, fine brewed soy sauce and sweet roasted malts. I believe I may have chilled this a bit too much, as I can tell that there is a lot more in the aromatics hiding beneath the chill. The taste is one of dark roasted cocoa bean intermingled with espresso and a touch of oak, vanilla and a hint of bourbon. The balance of acid and sweetness from the malts are superb. You would think from the menacing look of this brew that it would be heavy and overpowering, but it is “naught”…actually very tame and manageable, with a profound flavor profile; you will not tire easily from this selection. The mouthfeel is well balanced, moderate in weight and totally perfect for this creation. With or without your favorite fare..(I rarely consume hamburgers, but this would be an awesome match, as would most pub fare!) This brew is ready to please now and a perfect choice for this winter season…. the entire winter season!

 1,100 characters

Photo of asabreed
4.47/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber into a pint glass, with a different label than what's pictured. Let's hope that means more distribution of Southampton's brews.

Appearance: Almost opaque, with amber hues discerned on the bottom and on the side of the glass slightly in front of some light. Slightly sticky lacing and a head that's pretty large, but even with a vigorous pour dies a bit more quickly than I wanted.

Smell: Balance is the word. I've found a new definition for complexity -- so many things so perfectly done. Slightly burnt malt, sweet chocolate, slight molasses, sweet raisins, a hint of coffee, and notes of dark fruit, backed by the faintest of hops. This isn't taking me to new olfactory levels, but everything is near perfect.

Taste: Also ridiculously balanced. Somehow the sweetness, and it's pretty damn sweet, is done so well that it's the furthest thing from cloying, which I've never witnessed before. Usually with great Baltic porters, at least in my experience, much of the complexity comes from the insanely toasted nature melded with everything else. Here, though, the balance of sweetnesses, if you will, are very very nice. The raisins, molasses, dark fruit, sweet and slightly toasted malt, and faint hops lingering are all done to near perfection. It won't knock you on your ass with some type of divine religious experience, but what it does it does beyond well.

Mouthfeel: Big, rich, full, and creamy. Slight carbonation somehow works; once again it doesn't feel cloying and is welcoming sip after sip.

Drinkability: The alcohol's not discerned by me, but it's felt in the best of ways by the end. And it's perfect enough for a nice night cap or after dinner drink, and the bomber is the perfect size. I think I'll be snagging a few bottles of this, especially for the $4.50 price tag. Try it for sure, especially if you're wary of the style, as this is extremely balanced and less insane on the palate, in my opinion, than most Baltic porters that I've had, which makes it perfect for an intro to the style I think.

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Southampton Imperial Baltic Porter from Southampton Publick House
88 out of 100 based on 331 ratings.
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