Sweet Baby Java
DuClaw Brewing Company

Sweet Baby JavaSweet Baby Java
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
Porter - American
Ranked #178
ABV:
6.2%
Score:
88
Ranked #12,279
Avg:
3.94 | pDev: 11.42%
Reviews:
66
Ratings:
218
From:
DuClaw Brewing Company
 
Maryland, United States
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  5
Gots
  40
SCORE
88
Very Good
Sweet Baby JavaSweet Baby Java
Notes: Our single bestselling beer of all time, Sweet Baby Jesus! Chocolate Peanut Butter Porter, Hop Gunned with cold-steeped, whole bean espresso to infuse it’s iconic, lightly sweet chocolate and peanut butter flavor and aroma with warm notes of coffee… without any additional bitterness! One sip of Sweet Baby Java and you’ll wonder, “Where has this bean all my life?”

Style: Chocolate Peanut Butter Porter with Whole Bean Espresso
Color: Black
Hop Variety: Fuggle & Goldings
Grains: Pale, Chocolate, Crystal, Black, and Brown Malts; Roasted Barley, and Whole Bean Espresso.
Plato: 16
IBU: 53
View: Beers
Reviews: 66 | Ratings: 218 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Dmleech:
Photo of Dmleech
Dmleech from Indiana

4.03/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Apr 27, 2018
More User Reviews:
Photo of hophugger
hophugger from Virginia

3.55/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep dark color, basically black with minimal head and very minor spotty lacing. Aromas abound with chocolate and peanut butter and the taste is very much like the aroma, with the coffee coming out at the end. Mouthfeel is smooth and finish is relatively clean. Alcohol is not a player. Would have liked a little more espresso, IMHO

Mar 23, 2017
Photo of schoolboy
schoolboy from Ohio

3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I was told by Wally at Saveon that this was brewed specifically to compete with Willoughby Brewing's (2 miles from here) similar brew. Well, they are similar. This one is roastier but not as smooth. I doubted that they would have even heard of Willoughby Brewing, but I was told they competed somewhere and Willoughby won. I only have the Declaw on hand so I can't compare.

It pours a beautiful black with nice lacing. The aroma is an awesome roasty coffee, peanut smell with some ale. I wish it were much bigger in the malts and alcohol.

The taste is a clean roasty taste with very little booze present. I with it had more malts.

Recommended as a moderate taste without tons of alcohol.

Sep 10, 2017
Photo of yuenglingfan101
yuenglingfan101 from Ohio

5/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Love this beer. Similar to sweet baby Jesus. Dark brown color with a small tan head. Beer taste medium of peanut butter and heavy tasting on coffee and and malts. Goes down smooth

Apr 07, 2018
Photo of Kdouble
Kdouble from Tennessee

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

Jun 13, 2020
Photo of The_Beer_Guru
The_Beer_Guru from New York

4.25/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Oct 18, 2019
Photo of cwd
cwd from Kentucky

4.24/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

May 08, 2020
Photo of TonyStarks2231
TonyStarks2231 from New York

3.89/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Jul 25, 2020
Photo of OtisCampbell007
OtisCampbell007 from Tennessee

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

Feb 09, 2020
Photo of entenduintransit
entenduintransit from Tennessee

4.51/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nov 22, 2020
Photo of RBorsato
RBorsato from Virginia

3.01/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Feb 21, 2019
Photo of mholdefer
mholdefer from Alabama

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

Jan 31, 2019
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler from Pennsylvania

3.62/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

You may remember that as a part of the eradication of the Bottle Backlog here at Chez Woody, I conducted a multi-day, fourteen beer horizontal of DuClaw's beers in January of 2017. Since then, I have simply been chipping, reviewing new or different ones (to me) as they become available. This is one example of that trend.

From the bottle: "Our GABF medal-winning robust Chocolate Peanut Butter Porter, infused with whole bean espresso to add new depth and complexity to our Sweet Baby. Pop the top, take a sip, and you'll wonder ... Where has this 'bean' all my life?"; "Respect_the_Fluid".

A pun?!? Don't they realize that this is a union shop? I'll make the puns around here, thank you very much! I Pop!ped the top as directed & gave it a heavy-handed pour, being as that it was a fresh bottle. The head rose up to form three fingers of foamy, rocky, deep-tan/light-brown head that slowly caved in on itself to form a skim atop the beer. Color was Black/Opaque (SRM = 44), allowing light to penetrate only at the edges, casting off cola highlights. Nose was strong with peanut butter, which is always one of my cautions to people when using Sweet Baby Jesus in a blend - be judicious as a little (peanut butter flavor) will go a long way and can overpower everything else. Mouthfeel was medium to full, not quite creamy, but close. The taste was overwhelmingly of peanut butter, inspiring me to perhaps to a side-by-side with this beer and Sweet Baby Jesus to see if there is a perceptible difference. I could also taste the chocolatiness, especially on the finish, but the espresso beans seemed to have gotten lost in the mix. Finish was semi-dry as it was more of a bittersweet chocolate taste and the peanut butter was not lending a perceptible sweetness to the admixture. I think that they need to tweak this a little more to allow the espresso flavor to shine if it is going to receive top billing.

Mar 26, 2017
Photo of plaid75
plaid75 from New York

3.52/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Oct 07, 2018
Photo of PathofChaos
PathofChaos from Maryland

3.36/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance:
Pours a cocoa bean black that displays a translucent foundation of browned amber when held to the light. Exhibits a soapy head of beige that's whisked away abruptly as an interrupted daydream.

Bouquet:
Light-roast American coffee toys with the idea of peanut butter cup perfume, then leaves the store having only spritzed a free sample on its wrist.

Feel:
Akin to the bouquet, the body is surprisingly light weight. Its buzzing carbonation plays a bigger role than is typical of a sweet porter. Defiant of expectations, but not unwelcome. B-

Taste:
The cold espresso and dark chocolate are unexpectedly shy, like two wallflowers at a dance, who stare longingly across the room at one another; their chemistry is palpable but never fully coalesces, consequent of their bashfulness. A dulcet, hop vibe ushers the peanut butter onto the ballroom floor, infusing it with vibrance it could never obtain on its own. As such, the hopped peanut butter becomes the darling of the evening while the darker flavors just refuse to come out of hiding. Eventually, all three are crowded out by an unrefined rabble of sugar.

Overall:
An amusing treat, but cloying and smacks of unrealized potential. Tastes like a beer that's made to impress hipster college kids.

Apr 06, 2020
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect from Kentucky

3.81/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

With both the popular and notorious chocolate peanut butter porter in their hip pocket, the sweet and desserty ale pushes further into the digestive world with a bold roasted roundness of coffee for a jolt of flavor and energy. Sweet Baby Jesus has gone Sweet Baby Java.

The coffee infused chocolate peanut butter porter pours as rich of a brown hue as you'd expect, and just a hair's shade of black. A short mocha froth crowns the glass ahead of a dominant aroma of fresh brewed, bold roast coffee. A backdrop of chocolate and peanuts rest just underneath the coffee and the scent of porter lies further in the recesses of the nose. Sweet toffee, molasses and toast leap onto the early palate with the woven taste of chocolate.

And as the sweet malts simmer soundly on the middle palate, its richness is buffered only by the spice of roast. French press coffee is just shy of espresso proportions and casts a coffeehouse aura over the session. Again, the peanut butter and chocolate play second fiddle to the coffee while the slim bitterness of hops provide a broad and woodsy taste that's easily mistaken for coffee and cocoa derived bitterness.

Lingering sweetness is bready and lightly of fudge. Just off of cloying, the reprieve from coffee applies a spicy, robust and drying sensation on the late palate, bringing a semblance of balance to the otherwise dessert beer. A long linger of peanut buttercups and coffee keep the savory character going deep into the next sip.

Jun 26, 2017
Photo of Derek
Derek from Canada (BC)

4.12/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a bit of head, but no retention... due to peanut oil?

Awesome peanut butter aroma, with underlying coffee. These dominate the flavour, along with plenty of bakers chocolate. The hop and roasted bitterness provide a drinkable balance, but I wouldn’t mind a bit more sweetness and body. It’s fairly dry.

Dec 23, 2017
Photo of psmith161
psmith161 from Indiana

4.1/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aug 28, 2017
Photo of JerzDevl2000
JerzDevl2000 from New Jersey

3.87/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Picked this up on my way home from being on the road over the summer, finally getting around to it today. Love the Sweet Baby Jesus and wanted to give this a go when I saw it on the shelf down in Virginia. While a bit too roasted and dry for my taste, this had enough going for it that it was an enjoyable beer that was a different take on it's more well-known counterpart.

This had a black pour to it with hardly any light seeping in around the edges. A big, bubbly head of tan hue topped this off as it held it's own for a while. Some rings of lacing stayed behind as I worked my way through this as the liquid was just about the right consistency for an American Porter. Lots of peanut butter, milk chocolate, and coffee in the nose as the espresso was hardly anywhere to be found. Ditto for the taste as this was too thick and a bit too gritty to feel like that was in the mix. Chewy on the palate, a bit of earthy bitterness took hold as this faded away, with a chaser of water needed to get everything down in the end...

The amount of alcohol in here was sport on as it enhanced the flavors while not warming me up too much or making this feel too strong. A bit of caramel malt and brown sugar rounded this out as it was quite a nice dessert beer. Fun stuff that proved that an American Porter could be just as good as a Stout, to end a drinking session with!

Dec 27, 2018
Photo of neenerzig
neenerzig from Ohio

4.25/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured out of a 12 oz. bottle into one of my pint glasses, this beer pours a dark brown color with just a hint of amber highlights around the edges when held up to the light. Has a thick, creamy looking tan head that's well over an inch thick when first poured. Settles to 2.3-3/4 of an inch thick 5 minutes or so after being poured with excellent lacing and a very thick ring lining the inside of the glass. Aromas of toasted, slightly bready caramel malt sweetness along with notes of chocolate and peanut butter along with some coffee and vanilla. The taste is very similar, with roasted, slightly bready, caramel malt sweetness along with the aforementioned chocolate and peanut butter and coffee and vanilla. Just a touch of some earthy hops that give the perfect amount of bitterness to add some balance to all the sweet flavors. Has a somewhat crisp, mostly smooth and slightly frothy, medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation along with a clean finish and a sweet aftertaste. A very good beer all around here.

Eric

Feb 25, 2019
Photo of Budlum
Budlum from Maryland

3.94/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jul 29, 2017
Photo of DrWho
DrWho from Pennsylvania

3.33/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

I drank it straight from the bottle, I have recently sampled its sibling Sweet Baby Jesus which I liked better. It smells pretty good but again not as good as its sibling.

Nov 03, 2018
Photo of metter98
metter98 from New York

3.91/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is essentially jet black in color—when held up to a bright light there are traces of brown near the far edges of the glass. It poured with a quarter finger high tan head that rapidly died down, leaving some specks of bubbles on the surface and a narrow collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate to strong aromas of peanut butter are present in the nose along with notes of chocolate.
T: The taste follows the smell and is dominated by flavors of peanut butter from start to finish. There are notes of espresso and hints of chocolate and a light amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and slightly thin on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer really packs in the peanut butter in the aromas and flavors. I could see this making for a good choice to pair with a dessert.

Serving type: bottle

Nov 19, 2017
Photo of Tone
Tone from Missouri

3.67/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a black color. 1/4 inch head of an off-tan color. slight retention and slight lacing. Smells of popcorn, slight roasted malt, sweet malt, chocolate, and a hint of yeast. Fits the style of an American Porter. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with a low carbonation level. Tastes of popcorn, slight roasted malt, sweet malt, chocolate, and a hint of yeast. Overall, weak appearance, lack of coffee, peanut butter tastes like popcorn, but great feel.

Jul 22, 2017
Photo of Nephilium
Nephilium from Ohio

3.84/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Starts with peanut butter and a touch of coffee on the nose, pours an opaque black with a tan head. Rich full mouthfeel, with flavor notes of roast, chocolate, coffee, and peanut butter. The coffee comes through quite a bit in the finish, rounding out the other roasted notes. Overall, a nice twist on the Sweet Baby Jesus.

Sep 07, 2018
Sweet Baby Java from DuClaw Brewing Company
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 218 ratings