Victory At "Candy Cane Cove" | Ballast Point Brewing Company

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18 Ratings

Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Imperial Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Victory At Sea with Peppermint Candy Canes.
Brewed with vanilla, coffee, and peppermint and
"dry hopped" with candy canes.

Added by SanDiegoBeerLove on 12-10-2011

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 18 |  Reviews: 10
Photo of IceAce
4.46/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of corby112
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pitch black and opaque without any trace of lighter color. Two finger frothy beige head that very slowly settles into a thick, lasting cap/ring. Excellent retention with sheets of soapy lacing coating the glass on the way down. Looks great.

The aroma of this beer smells like coffee on Christmas morning. Prominent peppermint/candy cane character that tends to dominate the other characteristics but after it warms up a bit you can pick up the robust coffee and roasted dark malt notes. Vanilla is overpowered but there's still some robust coffee bean, oatmeal and dark chocolate. Really unusual with a bit too much sugary candy at first but the nose is pretty inviting after it gets closer to room temp.

Fuller end of medium body with a blast of icy peppermint sweetness. Tons of mint flavor that's like liquid candy cans/thin mint/York peppermint patty. Sweet sugary candy and chocolate covered mint. candy cane mintiness overpowers much of the base beer but under the refreshing mint there is some robust smoked malt with hints of coffee, dark chocolate and oatmeal. These flavors cut through the candy sweetness a bit but the heavy mint flavor still dominates. Ridiculously refreshing and easy to drink with only a slight trace of boozy heat in the finish. I can see how this could be a bit too minty/gimmicky for some but I really enjoy it.

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Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.99/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ronricorossi
4.61/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

***100th Review***

On tap at the Public House at the Giants' ballpark, pouring at a Ballast Point tap-takeover during the out-of-control incredible SF Beer Week.

Now, I just got finished writing that the Bread Pudding was my favorite VAS varietal, but this one's right there with it. Spectacular burst of candy cane flavor. A bit one-note, sure, but no one's expecting a ton of nuance and complexity from this one. What you can expect, though, is easily the best mint beer you've ever had (admittedly, not a category terribly crowded with competition at the moment).

Look, sweet beers aren't for everyone. The guy behind me in line at at the bar was talking like it'd be a cold day in hell before he ordered a peppermint beer. But if you've got a sweet tooth and the idea of "Christmas in a glass" sounds exciting, then yeah, this is the beer.

Wish I could drink this every Christmas...

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Photo of Lorianneb
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at Bainbridge barrel house in Philly.

Glass: Tulip

Appearance: jet black, small tan head. No real lacing

Aroma: chocolate, candy cane dominates

Taste: candy cane dominates, some chocolate, some vanilla, no coffee. As it warms, the candy cane goes more in the back ground and the others come forward. It was kind of one demential cold and much more well rounded warm.

Mouthfeel: medium mouthfeel with low carbonation

Overall: I really like this beer. Have some if you get the chance

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Photo of Holland
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

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

On tap at Bainbridge Street Barrel House.

Solid black pour, with some dark brown around the edges, a small mocha head held at a ringlet; minimal lacing with a few legs on the glass. Nice aroma, dark chocolaty malts, peppermint...maybe one-dimensional, but delivered what was promised anyway. Pronounced peppermint in the taste, dark chocolate, light roast coming out as it warmed; no hops whatsoever, but I wouldn't have expected any. Body would probably have been on the fuller side of medium, but I think the candy cane aspect detracted it a bit, though it was still a fun drink, with a smooth--but minty--mouthfeel. I probably wouldn't get more than one glass at a time, but I'd definitely try it again.

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Photo of largadeer
3.75/5  rDev -9.9%

Photo of jlieber17
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of Sammy
3.58/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

on tap at Churchill's Pub. A story in peppermint. Peppermint aroma and taste.Some roasted coffee. Above average mouthfeel.Not very drinkable. Either its the tap that didn't make it work, or its Ballast Point as it seems the cask was there for 10 days. Good on looks alone.

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Photo of ehammond1
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4


Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

Jet black, shiny, with a thin light brown cap. Sheets of lacing down the glass. Thick and menacing.

Peppermint, a bit of vanilla, and some chocolate make for a hugely aromatic porter. The coffee elements found in the base beer are pretty much lost. The peppermint is dominant, and while pleasant, it certainly covers up what else must be there. That being said, the combination of peppermint, chocolate, and vanilla aromas is divine.

The flavor is remarkably reminiscent of Girl Scout Thin Mint Cookies. It's a huge combination of peppermint, chocolate, a bit of vanilla, and little else. Delicious, though somewhat simple and limited by the huge amount of peppermint present.

Medium to full mouthfeel with low carbonation.

A delicious, specialty, holiday porter, though all that being said, the original version of Victory at Sea is the better beer.

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Photo of HopHead84
3.5/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


Cask at Ballast Point.

A: Black with a big frothy brown head.

S: Definitely smells like a candy cane. Peppermint is strong, and it blends nicely with dark chocolate and roasted malt. Coffee and vanilla are light, both overwhelmed by the peppermint.

T: Pronounced peppermint with dark chocolate and a low earthy bitterness. There's a big roasted malt presence and a little coffee. The peppermint dominates.

M: Full in body with moderate carbonation and a sticky mouthfeel.

Overall: A cool concept but the peppermint is too strong in the flavor to make one desire more than a couple ounces.

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Photo of BeerBodisafa
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of wattershed
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of DarthKostrizer
4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On cask at Blue Palms

Look: Black and opaque with a huge 1 inch head and good retention with some spotty lacing

Smell: Lots of peppermint on the nose and I guess that is what they were going for so it is spot on. The peppermint is backed up by the victory at sea's very nice coffee note

Taste: The flavor is exactly the same as the nose except the peppermint lingers on for quite a while and actually takes away from the base beer.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and medium carbonation and a bit tingly from the mint

Overall: My expierences with mint in beer lead me to believe that this would be just as bad. However I was pleasently surpirsed but again the mint did become a bit of a distraction. IMO when you have a beer that is damn near perfect if not perfect like VAS is then why mess with it

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Photo of jlb502
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.54/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On cask at Blue Palms Brewhouse in Los Angeles, CA as part of their Jingle Bell Jubilee.

Brewed with vanilla, coffee, peppermint and dry hopped with candy canes.

Served with a small peppermint candy cane adorning the glass.

Pours an opaque black with a 1 inch puffy tan head that settles to an oily film. Chunk thin rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark chocolate, peppermint candy, and Junior Mints candy. Taste is of dark roasted malt, bitter chocolate/cocoa, candy cane, and Junior Mints. A medium roasty and mint bitterness lingers on the palate after each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Overall, this is a great version of Victory At Sea that is very festive. The peppermint combo with the normal Victory At Sea base beer works extremely well. I am very glad I was able to try this offering from Ballast Point.

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Photo of SanDiegoBeerLove
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On Cask at Blue Palms in LA. Served in a Snifter glass.

A - Dark Brown with a very large(3 finger) Tan head and good consistency. The head contained small bubbles and lasted quite a long time.

Smell - Peppermint(heavy), Chocolate, Vanilla, Coffee, and Minerals.

Taste - Peppermint(heavy), Dark Chocolate, Vanilla, Calcium Carbonate, and Coffee.

Mouthfeel - Medium with a lot of spice from the Peppermint. Carbonation is good, a little sweetness and some Bitterness

O - Very good and unique. Each glass received a small peppermint candy cane, a nice touch. Glad I had the chance to try it. They will have to make this again next year. Thank you Matt.

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Victory At "Candy Cane Cove" from Ballast Point Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.16 out of 5 with 18 ratings