Mocha Marlin | Ballast Point Brewing Company

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253 Ratings
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Mocha MarlinMocha Marlin
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company
California, United States
ballastpoint.com

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Coffee and chocolate come together in this brew.
Our Black Marlin Porter is the perfect beer for a mocha mashup. The addition of coffee and cocoa plays perfectly off the roasty, chocolaty flavors of this English porter, while a hint of vanilla smooths it all out. It’s full-bodied, but not too sweet; try it for breakfast…or dessert.

42 IBU

Added by dmorgan310 on 11-22-2015

BEER STATS
Ratings:
253
Reviews:
71
Avg:
4.11
pDev:
7.3%
 
 
Wants:
3
Gots:
38
For Trade:
1
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 253 |  Reviews: 71
Reviews by Pantalones:
Photo of Pantalones
4.18/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Drinking a full 22 ounces of this one tonight. Unsure of the bottling date or best-by, though there is something on the bottom of the bottle in yellow print that looks like "16 264" -- 264th day of 2016, so about three months old? Should be in good shape considering it's a dark, not-hoppy beer.

Speaking of dark -- this beer is pretty much BLACK. Shining a flashlight through the glass... well, it doesn't go through the glass except in the narrows parts, and even then only at angles where it hits as little beer as possible on its way. Seems to be somewhat clear but it's difficult to tell with a beer this dark. Nice fluffy head of light brown foam on top, which shrinks away after several minutes leaving a thick ring around the outer edge and just a coating layer on top. Leaves a nice pattern of lacing behind as it goes, I'm noticing.

This smells amazing -- super chocolatey, just enough coffee that you know it's not going to be just pure chocolate or overly sweet, and mixed together really well. Like a semi-sweet chocolate-coffee milkshake. I may be picking up just a hint of some other dark malty smells in the background, but considering that those lean in the chocolate/coffee direction to begin with it's hard to tell for sure. Either way, this has got to be one of the best-smelling beers I've had.

Taste pretty much matches the smell. Lots of coffee-like flavors right away, blending in with more chocolate and a bit of those sweetish dark malty flavors (a bit more noticeable in the taste than in the smell, interestingly.) Aftertaste on the first sip is like coffee with a thin chocolate coating. Burps bring out more of the sweetish dark-malt flavors along with the chocolate-coffee blend. Around three-quarters to the bottom of my first glass, I'm noticing just a hint of bitterness on the end -- not sure if this is coming from roasted malt, hops, or a combination, but at 42 IBU and barely 3 months old it could very well be hops. I think I am picking up on a bit of that leafy-bitter flavor in the aftertaste now that I think about it -- so yeah, probably hops! Wasn't expecting to see them in this beer, but their influence is certainly not unpleasant, teaming up with the coffee roastiness to balance out the massive sweet chocolate and malt pretty well. At the end of the first glass, I'm noticing a roasted malt flavor that's distinct from the chocolate/coffee blend -- confirming, along with the presence of the hops, that this is indeed a beer and not some sort of coffee-infused chocolate milk or Yoo-Hoo.

Feel is pretty nice as well, though it doesn't stand out quite as much as the smell and flavor. It's light enough to be very drinkable but still has a nice feeling of fluffiness or thickness to it, even after the foam on top has shrunk almost entirely away -- seems like it works just as well for smaller sips and big gulps, which is something not a lot of beers pull off (a lot will tend toward one side or the other.) There's a bit of a stickiness to it, similar to what I get from big stouts and doppelbocks from time to time. It does seem to thin out a bit toward the end of a glass, unfortunately, but even then it's not even close to feeling watery or otherwise unpleasant -- just not quite as nice as it was earlier on.

Overall... this is REALLY good. Everything about it just fits really well together. Probably my favorite new beer of 2016 -- and even if not #1, it's easily in the top 3. I've never had (or even SEEN...) the regular Black Marlin porter, but after how much I liked this one both times I had some, I'd be interested to check it out and see what the "base" beer is like.

 3,657 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of bobhits
4.57/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

So this is a bad time to review this but debate 3 in the election. So I'll try to avoid that horrible taste.

Dark brown color with an amazing head, creamy as hell and thick mocha.

The nose is coffee and chocolate and vanilla with a malty sugary back.

A light roast coffee with some tropical fruits in the coffee/hop bill along with dark chocolate.

I like this one a lot, it's got some ipa notes and some coffee stout notes. I can't explain a similar example, love it. Just love it. It isn't perfect beer, flaws are here but man this was a good test.

 561 characters

Photo of DanGeo
3.85/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Billolick
4.18/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bomber bottle, a good value at $5.99 per at Peekskill Bev, Peekskill, NY

Pours dark and stout like, lighter mocha head leaves nice looking fine film, and a load of splattered fine sheeting.

Sniff of chocolate and cafe au lait.

Smooth, tasty, flavorful and dangerously easy drinking flovored porter/stout. moderate chocolate and coffee notes....basically delicious...would go great with a decadent chocolate dessert

 420 characters

Photo of reitzbrewing
4.46/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Rejis
3.94/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of ledouge
3.07/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Photo of rsquared59
4.21/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MattyG85
4.46/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a chalice.

Appearance: Pours a dark blackish brown. Moderate amount of bubbles and a big two finger tan head that settles into a thin creamy layer.

Smell: A roasty and sweet dark malt driven aroma with a scent of coffee and chocolate. Dark roasted malt with a scent of coffee beans, chocolate, toast, biscuit, nuts, caramel, toffee, and smoke along with yeast. Sweet scent of vanilla and milk lactose. Subtle hints of earthy hops. A really nice aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a roasty and sweet dark malt forward taste with notes of coffee and chocolate. Dark roasted barley malt with good notes of coffee beans and chocolate along with some biscuit, toast, caramel, toffee, nuts, and smoke with some yeast. Sweet taste of milk lactose and vanilla. Light earthy hop bitterness towards the finish. A very good roasty taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy, silky, and smooth with a fairly drying finish.

Overall: A very good Coffee Porter. Good balance of roasty bitterness and sweetness.

 1,068 characters

Photo of chickenm
3.88/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of DCHritz
4.41/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of InfernoBoss
4.08/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of biboergosum
4.08/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle - maybe I am having this one for breakfast...maybe I am.

This beer pours a fairly solid black, with orange cola basal edges, and three chubby fingers of puffy, rocky, and chunky brown head, which leaves some smushed webbed lace around the glass as it very slowly sinks away.

It smells of roasted craft coffee, bittersweet chocolate, gritty and grainy caramel malt, vanilla cookies, and some very plain earthy and floral green hop bitters. The taste is bready and doughy caramel malt, Coffee Crisp candy bars (coffee, and chocolate wafers, mostly - hey, Hallowe'en was a few days ago, and there's lots of that stuff still kicking about around here), vanilla pudding, a twinge of sugary black licorice, and more tame leafy, earthy, and gently perfumed floral hoppiness.

The carbonation is quite low-key in its barely supportive frothiness, the body a solid medium weight, and genuinely smooth, with a nice aerosol creaminess apparently there from the get-go. It finishes off-dry, the cocoa, coffee, and caramel doing one good hipster java shop impression!

Overall, this comes across as a well-made, rich and luxurious coffee and chocolate enhanced Porter, with nothing out of place or worth complaining about here, nuh-uh. Easy to drink, and enjoyable, however, it's really giving me the urge to go out and find something salty or savoury to share with it!

 1,373 characters

Photo of Mattybuchs
4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.88/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours near black, dark cola brown with a cocoa-powder colored, rocky two-finger width head. Fair retention, settling to a thin, broken layer of suds with a fair ring around the edge of the glass. Fair lacing, with small spotting and a few broken lines.

Smell - Immediately hits with notes of coffee roast and milk chocolate. Hints of caramel and vanilla sit beneath.

Taste - Follows the nose. Hits first with mild coffee roast and milk chocolate sweetness, then lesser notes of vanilla cream and some caramel peak through by mid-taste. Finishes with the sweetness fading while the coffee roast holds firm in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium in body with subpar carbonation. A bit slick on the tongue, with a slightly watery finish. Goes down easy enough, but feels a bit thin for the flavor profile.

Overall - Pretty good flavor, but the mouthfeel falls a bit short. Not bad for the price (>$5 at Winco). If it sticks around, it might be an occasional buy there because their dark beer selection is sorely lacking.

 1,042 characters

Photo of whatname
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of tdm168
4.21/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of dertyd
3.99/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Roguer
4.29/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Modest tan head from a careful pour; very dark body, nearly black shot through with dark brown.

Big coffee aroma, which yields to roasted barley, nuts, and a very noticeable chocolate presence. Very similar to FBS.

Starts thin up front, but very soon waves of chocolate (and to a lesser extent coffee) come crashing through. It's a lovely, organic chocolate flavor, similar to Young's Double Chocolate, neither too sweet nor too bitter. The coffee is most prominent immediately up front, and on the bitter, roasty finish. Hints of cream and pecans, and very light notes of banana and red grape round out the profile, but it's the adjuncts which really shine here.

Slightly thin, but not unduly so, given the 6%. For the ABV, in fact, this is one of the most flavor-packed breakfast-style stouts on the market.

 812 characters

Photo of avisong
4.28/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of trocketsauced
3/5  rDev -27%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of ordybill
4.56/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass. The appearance is a dark brown to black color with a medium sized tan head. The aroma is roasted malt, coffee and chocolate. The taste matches the nose and is awesome.

 216 characters

Photo of russpowell
4.22/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours ebony with 2+ of caramel colored head. Good head retention & better than average lacing

S: Coffee, a little vanilla, some choclolate & black currant as this warms

T: Follows the nose, a little caramel & roastyness, drynesss as well up front. Woody hops, roastyness & a little vanilla as this warms. Finishes dry, roasty & with a little mocha sweetness

MF: Medium body, creamy carbonation

Flavorful Porter that's easy to drink, plenty of coffee presence

 469 characters

Photo of breadwinner
4.14/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A very nice coffee stout for a cold winter evening, the coffee and chocolate both foward for sure and both feeling very quality, nothing too harsh, nothing too sweet, just a finely balanced brew.

 195 characters

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Mocha Marlin from Ballast Point Brewing Company
4.11 out of 5 based on 253 ratings.
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