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Victory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial Porter | Ballast Point Brewing Company

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Victory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial PorterVictory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial Porter
BA SCORE
4.39/5
Outstanding
6,904 Ratings
Victory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial PorterVictory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial Porter
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our Victory at Sea Imperial Porter is a bold, smooth brew with just the right amount of sweetness. We infused this robust porter with whole vanilla beans and San Diego’s own Caffe Calabria coffee beans. The subtle roasted notes and minimal acidity of the cold brewed coffee, balances perfectly with the sweet caramel undertones of the malt, creating a winning combination for your palate.

Added by radshoesbro on 03-17-2009

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#252
Reviews:
1,437
Ratings:
6,904
pDev:
8.88%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
1,097
Gots:
2,234
Trade:
85
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 6,904 |  Reviews: 1,437
Photo of egrace84
3.25/5  rDev -26%

Photo of NRo
3.29/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: beautiful black body with a nice light tan head

Smell: Like fresh coffee grounds

Taste: Seriously, all I can taste is coffee. This is marginally better than drinking cold coffee cause at least it's beer.

Mouth feel: nice and thick, smooth

Overall: I'd let it age and hope that the coffee dies down and let's other flavors come through.

 351 characters

Photo of ptykozoon
3.29/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours blackish, strong frothy head, sticky lacing, red hues in the light, pretty.

Sweet rich coffee, not much else.

Lots of luscious coffee, not gonna lie - can't find much of any vanilla. Detecting a bit of hops.

Lots of heat and sharp carbonation. Smooth density contrasts the alcohol bite and carbonation AND coffee bitterness too much. Could use some time in the cellar.

Not a bad beer, great coffee quality, rich and creamy.

 434 characters

Photo of Benjo87
3.32/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Look - jet black in the glass with a nice and fluffy 2 finger tan coloured head.

Smell - coffee is the dominant smell here. I'm getting a touch of the vanilla, roasted and malt and slight alcohol.

Taste - coffee coffee coffee. It's quite bitter. I was hoping for a bit more sweetness. Its that type of bitterness you get from an espresso with no sugar. Alcohol slightly present. I was expecting more.

 402 characters

Photo of steveheady
3.33/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Burnt flavor on nose and taste. I did not detect much vanilla or coffee notes. Not a fan

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Photo of TruePerception
3.34/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Ballast Point's Victory At Sea, porter brewed with coffee and vanilla. 10% ABV.

A: Almost two fingers of lighter chocolate milk colored head. Pitch black in the glass. Very dark brown in the dimple. A good amount of multi-layered lacing. Slight sheeting.

S: Deep roasted coffee up front. Vanilla is hard to make out against the coffee. Slight powdered cocoa.

T/MF: Very dark coffee, mixed with a bunch of char! And a heavy dose of hops. Quite heavy for a porter, all told.

Hmm. I'd heard good things about this one, but it is quite disappointing. I'll see how it warms up.

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle, into a Belgian tulip glass.

 634 characters

Photo of Nutman86
3.36/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of mrmiles
3.37/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

One of my all time favorites. First time review. First bottle of the 2010 batch. Poured into my St. Bernardus goblet.

A: Pour is a dark brown. Very dark, almost black when held to the light. Slight foaming at edge of glass, but no real head to speak of. Small groupings of bubbles ride the surface.

S: Coffee first. Followed by vanilla and some chocolate notes. Some chocolate malt presence as well.

T: The vanilla comes first mixed with some roast coffee. Chocolate malt follows and then aftertaste picks up the coffee again. Boozy, but well hidden. Some bitterness present, most likely from the coffee.

M: Solid carbonation makes this beer feel lighter than it really is. Very deceptive. A bit viscous for a porter however.

D: Extremely drinkable. Even better after a year or 2 when alcohol mellows. Be careful though as the abv will catch up quickly.

Overall I love this beer. Like I said, one of my all time favorites and without a doubt my favorite porter. That being said, it very often doesn't feel like a porter. I will drink this beer again, and again, and again...

 1,080 characters

Photo of Floader
3.38/5  rDev -23%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had better Examples of this style

33 characters

Photo of kkazemi
3.38/5  rDev -23%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Photo of mactrail
3.38/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A black liqueur of a beer.

Nice to look at, with a topping of beige-tinted foam. Pleasant enough carbonation. Intense flavors. Hot with alcohol and tastes like rum, with a dollop of Bailey's Cream. Hops are a good touch and cut the sweet maltiness, leaving a bitter aftertaste. I just keep thinking of those flavored instant coffees.

I guess this boils down to whether you like coffee and ice cream in your beer. Maybe for dessert with a piece of angel food cake.

 465 characters

Photo of JohnPecod
3.38/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - not quite a stout and not quite a porter. The head doesn't stay around long but still overall a beauty.

S - Oak, coffee, with hints of chocolate and vanilla. Not an outstanding bouquet but perfectly acceptable.

T - Historically this has been one of my favorite beers, but this batch tastes distinctly different than the others I've had. The distinction/problem was the dominance of the oak flavor. Unlike previous batches that deftly balanced the chocolate, vanilla, and coffee flavors this lacked the depth and complexity I've come to expect. The oak muscled everything out.

M - A little extra pop of carbonation but perfectly in line with the style.

O - Maybe my buds we're having an off night. Luckily I have another bottle to do more "analysis."

 758 characters

Photo of Teleweizen2
3.38/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - pours pitch black with a bubbly mocha head of foam. Two fingers worth. It dissipated rather quickly. Leaves streaks of lacing.

S - lots of oily espresso on first sniff along with varying degrees of roasted malt and a bit of milk chocolate. Some mild spice notes along with hints of vanilla and toasted coconut.

T - vaguely sweet on the front of the tongue. The roasty bitter flavors enter mid palate to balance the sweetness. There are hints of vanilla as well but it seems to be providing a counter notand e to the strong esprosso bean roasty flavors.

M - full bodied. medium carbonation. Creamy texture.

O - an interesting ale. I was expecting a little more desert beer
from this with the vanilla playing a larger role. But still flavorful and well produced.

 772 characters

Photo of JISurfer
3.39/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The more I drink it, the more I find wrong with it. Not sure if they changed the recipe, but the coffee in the beer tastes over roasted and bitter. The first time I tried it a few years ago, it was much better balanced, with hardly any bitter coffee finish.

 260 characters

Photo of MasterfulIdiot
3.4/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into an Ikea Snifter

Appearance is black, with an impressively large cafe-au-lait-colored head for the snifter. The head fades quickly, and leaves some scattered tendrils of lace.

Smell is majorly coffee, with a slight lactic tartness. Really smells like some kind of creamy iced mocha drink.

Flavor was a little disappointing to me. Lots of coffee and chocolate. But it's so roasty that it comes across as burnt. There's some nice off-setting sweetness on the palate from the vanilla, but the swallow ends up being overly bitter and charred to me.

Mouthfeel is nice, thick, and creamy, as I'd expect.

Overall, it's definitely good, but there are many coffee beers I'd choose over this one... Not sure what I missed here - maybe my expectations were too high?

 781 characters

Photo of Jordenfay
3.4/5  rDev -22.6%

Photo of RAlmeida77
3.41/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Wasn't blow away by this beer. Thought it was pretty good. HInts of vanilla and coffee in the nose but definitely wanted more of a vanilla presence in the flavor.

 162 characters

Photo of kingcrowing
3.42/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into a Duvel tulip.

Pours a velvety black with a very small light brown head that quickly dies down. Nose is coffee, a bit of sweet vanilla and chocolate malts.

Taste is rich and sweet, the coffee bitterness is quite strong and present, a bit astringent and harsh. The vanilla isn't very apparent but I think it's toning down the bitterness of the coffee a bit. It's pretty good but a bit harsh for drinking a lot of.

 438 characters

Photo of harrymel
3.42/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Black with light tan foam. Smells of coffee and vanilla, very strong and decadent. Flavor is overpowering coffee and burnt malts. Full bodied with moderate carb and an off dry finish. Decent beer, nose>flavor

Original review on 19FEB11: 3/2.5/2.5/3.5/3- 2.73
A: Pours a dark, brown ale. single finger latte head falls quickly leaving a fine velvet sheet. Little lacing.
S: Plenty of coffee. Sharp alcoholic nose. A little overbearing with the coffee and alcohol.
T: Once the beer hits the mouth, it's all vanilla. Such a severe transition from coffee to vanilla, man I don't really dig this. Okay, a little bit later and the coffee is starting to balance out the vanilla sweetness a bit. Roasty background.
M: Thick with low carbonation. Sticky.
D: This is a big beer. I will finish the bottle, but I will never seek this out again.

 837 characters

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.42/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Pours near black. Hints of dark rich browns at the edge. Head is dark khaki and starts off big and rocky. Drops to a smaller cap and clumpy collar. Some small notches of lacing. Moderate carbonation on the pour.

Smell: Loaded with fresh vanilla bean and straight up roasted coffee bean. A slight twinge of coffee acidity as well. Nicely roasted with a touch of burnt malt. Nicely caramelized with a measured sweetness. A touch of herbal hops with a ton of cocoa. Bitter baker's chocolate with some milder dark chocolate thrown in the mix. A touch of brownie as well. Vanilla adds a touch of sweetness as well.

Taste: Holy vanilla batman. Slightly bitter over extracted vanilla bean. Roasted coffee beans lend a bit of an acrid edge as well. Deeply roasted with some charred and burnt edges. Some cooked and caramelized malts, but it's more and more burnt with each sip. Sweet. Milk chocolate, bitter cocoa, straight nibs and then some overextracted clespresso. Very chocolatey. Did I mention chocolate and coffee and vanilla because seriously. It's borderline candy.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy up front. Finishes clean with a medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: Edward Kenway sank this ship.

Sweet and burnt. It hits on all the promised flavors, but it's just not all there. So very heavy on the vanilla and chocolate. A dessert beer yes.

 1,372 characters

Photo of thebeers
3.42/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Bottle date 15058; batch 62.

Near black with two fingers of thick, lasting mocha-colored head that leave impressive lacing. Heavy malts, along with hints of coffee and vanilla on the nose, combine into a chocolate milk / YooHoo smell. The taste, however, doesn't live up to the presentation. The malt flavors expected from a high-quality porter just aren't there. Neither roasty nor creamy, there are hints from the solid nose present in the taste, but then an unpleasant, acerbic aftertaste I attribute to the coffee, although hop bitterness may also play a role. Glad I didn't buy a six pack.

 600 characters

Photo of RenzoD
3.43/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Kind of disappointed with this one. It was good but not as incredible as I was lead to believe. Extremely boozy taste. Covered up all the other flavors for me. Judging by the aroma I was expecting to love this stuff. Smells heavenly and looks dynamite. Maybe it was something I had eaten before that had paired wrong, but I really tasted too much alcohol. I will try it again some day and maybe have a different opinion.

 420 characters

Photo of craytonic
3.43/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bit of a letdown.

Appearance: Decent head and lacing; pour is of course near-black with some ruby/mahogany to it

Smell: Lots of dark, roasted malts, bittersweet chocolate, and coffee grounds. Hint of vanilla, but not much

Taste: Roasted malts, burnt coffee and espresso, dark chocolate, hint of vanilla. Title is fitting. A bit more bitter / acidic than I would have liked.

Mouthfeel: Smooth enough, but the coffee ground taste makes it feel a bit chewy.

Drinkability: Bitter / accidic element of the coffee and roast limits drinkability unless you are big on those elements.

 580 characters

Photo of VaporDome
3.44/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very dark, notes of coffee and chocolate. Viscous in the bleachers mouth

72 characters

Photo of Mpsmooth31
3.44/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Victory At Sea Coffee Vanilla Imperial Porter from Ballast Point Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.39 out of 5 with 6,904 ratings
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