Chocolate Thunder Porter
Watch City Brewing Co.

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English Porter
3.76 | pDev: 5.85%
Watch City Brewing Co.
Massachusetts, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Reviews: 13 | Ratings: 19
Reviews by Todd:
Photo of Todd
3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Hand bottled @ Watch City for

Appearance: So brown its black in colour. Pours a mean, bubbly, creamy coffee-tan head. Settles to a thin creamy lace.

Smell: Chocolate, faint vanilla, sherri-like esters.

Taste: A full-bodied brew with an even mouthfeel. Smooth upfront, turning a bit coarse on the palate then fading into an light astringent, earthy black malt character. Unsweetened dark chocolate flavours are dominating, distinct, soft and ride thru the entire beer, start to finish. Flavours of a light hop character and leafy feel follow, with faint background sherri flavours. Finish leans heavily towards dry with a parched feel on the palate, lingering chocolate flavours and a rounding light malt sweetness.

Notes: Brewed with 75lbs of Belgian chocolate! A very unique and interesting porter, however not a traditional one.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of UncleJimbo
4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled at the brewpub in Aug. 2005.

This porter poured an almost-opaque black-brown color with light brown, creamy foam that settled and coated the inside of the glass. The smell was chocolate and cocoa malt but was mild. The taste was malty with dominant flavors of chocolate and cocoa, and with a slight tanginess and a very mild hoppiness. The mouthfeel was smooth yet crisp with medium body and good carabonation. Dry overall with a dry finish that left a memory of chocolate on the tongue. This was a very nice beer.

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Photo of Truh
3.53/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Rained Good ‘n Plenty and Bit ‘o Honey with this one on 1/31/2007. 16-oz. shaker pour at the source, Moody St.

Flimsy top of white, with lots of patches peeking through and crenellation on the edges. Hue is very dark until held close to an incandescent light, at which some chestnut touches pull through on the edges and top, like a skein of blood red. Black patent malt nails the nose with an appropriate woody character too and a touch of butterscotch. A hint of baker’s chocolate on the tongue is fairly overpowered by a roasted granola crunchiness; a note of sifted flour hits the back of the throat, a little scratchy. Medium body could have benefited from some more depth.

Had this a week later on cask, having sat on some Jack Daniels wood. Not an entirely different pour, but enough to note I prefer the woodiness and some added alcohol complexity, some smokiness too, from the latter version.

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Photo of EPICAC
3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had a pint of this with dinner at Grendel's Den in Harvard Square on Tuesday night. It was served in a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown with ruby tints. The head is a thin, wispy brown film.

Smell: Chocolate, roasted coffee, light fruitiness and a hint of sourness.

Taste: Mildly sweet upfront with a bit of sourness that reminds me of extra-dark chocolate (Scharffen Berger 82% Cacao) coming through in the center, followed by a mild roasted bitterness in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium-bodied with high carbonation.

Drinkability: Very tasty, and light enough to have a few.

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Photo of fdrich29
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Watch City 6/20/05

I had a sample of Thunder Porter at the American Beer Fest Saturday, June 18 and when I randomly found myself at Watch City last night I decided I'd like to have a glass of it based on that sample.

Poured a dark brown, almost black. Nice creamy tan head and smelled of sweet chocolate and malt.

I really enjoyed this beer, the chocolate flavor was not overpowering but certainly prevelant. I could have easily had a few more of these but switched to another beer in the rotation instead. There's always another night.

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Photo of smcolw
3.52/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

This beer had so much going for it. The head was extensive, tan and slowly fading. Great lace. The smell was mostly bitter-sweet chocolate. There was also good hop balance.

It's at the taste that I found this beer starting to slip. It was closer to a lighter stout than chocolatey porter. I noticed yeast flavors as well, while I could not detect the hop that appeared in the smell. The body of the beer was lacking--this is a very thin beer for the style. In fact, I'd say it is thin for a brown ale. It also had a high level of carbonation.

So much promise, yet it misses the mark, imho.

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Photo of carln26
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured from the tap a dark brown to black with a thick tan head that settled nicely into the beer and left a clingy lace. The aroma was dark roasted malt, almost peaty with a mold coffee/chocolate backing. Aroma has a nice roast malt aroma with just a little espresso. The flavor is dark and rich. The roast malt is dominate up front, but the chocolate name sake follows quickly. The finish has espresso, and just a hint of hops. Smooth, rich mouth feel, nice drinakbility.

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Photo of BetterDarker
3.82/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Mahogany brown, borderline black. Little carbonation with a thin off white head which quickly fades.

S- Lots of chocolate upfront, as expected, nice malt aroma.

T- Obviously lots of bitter chocolate up front, slight hint of vanilla, not much going on with the hops.

M- Smooth albeit a bit thin with some carbonation.

D- A decent brew, I like that the chocolate is bitter, not sicky sweet like so many "chocolate" beers.

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Photo of RixBeer
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- So brown it's black? No carbonation, Thin cream off white head fades quick.

S- Chocolate (duh), Malty (duh), Vanilla?, Coffee?

T- Huge semi sweet chocolate taste. Very strong and bitter after taste.

M- Smooth up front, Bitter in the end. Full body [and then some]!

D- I can have one. Not cause it's bad. Because it's so heavy. This is a great beer! Just gotta stop at one [ok maybe two].

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Photo of kevgod
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of jneiswender
3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap as part of a sample tray at the brew pub. Served in a medium to small sample glass.

A-dark garnet body, tan head thick

S-smoky, chocolate smell

T-chocolate, faint smoke flavor


D-not a bad drink. good flavor, as advertised. Not really a porter. Worth a try nonetheless.

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Photo of Jayli
3.87/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a deep dark opaque brown, almost black. A short tan head sat atop of the beer, leaving generous thick lacing on the glass. Nose is very well done - coffee and roasted malts dominate the nose but also has a strong presence of bitter chocolate in the nose. Taste is of bitter chocolate and coffee, roasted malts also kick in here. The finish is slightly dry with a sour coffee aftertaste to it. This is a much lighter bodied beer than I anticipated, and a bit too carbonated. This beers does go down pretty well and wouldn't be a bad beer to sit with for an evening.

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Photo of koopa
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of tigg924
3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: 1/4 inch head, clear, dark brown in color

Smell: roasted malt and chocolate

Taste: deep roasted malt, some cream and chocolate--mostly milk chocolate, but some dark as well

Mouthfeel: robust and full bodied, sweet with a nice semi-bitter backbone, medium carbonation

Drinkability: A very good chocolate beer where the chocolate jumps out big. A nice treat to sit with. Only one per sitting though as the chocolate is super dominant.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.71/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a bomber of this while at the brewpub because they were out of it on-tap. Pours a dark, opaque, deep brown to black coloring with a thin, frothy, foamy, light brown colored head. Looks delicious. Aromas of deep roasting, with coffee grounds and cocoa nibs blending together for a balanced bitter attack. Flavors are very dry, with a roasting overtone initially that is quickly blown away by a blast of dark, bitter, cocoa nib flavor that takes over the palate, and that is then quickly underswept by a rising, sweet, almost fudgy chocolate backbone. The flavors on the palate do a reverse cascade on your taste buds. Very dynamic, but also very rich and flavorful. The aftertaste is light, with hints of chocolate, both sugary and rich. There is a strong effervescent feel at the end of the palate, giving the brew a sharpness to its dry, thin body. The finish is slick, with a long enduring linger of bittersweetness, almost to a point of cloying. I would not be able to drink a lot of these in one sitting, despite the lower ABV. The full flavors are too rich for multiple pints, but just right for savoring one or two. Would go great with a chocolate themed dessert.

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Photo of jpd7374
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of standardcherry
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of DelicateDelirium
3.25/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of dct1267
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

Chocolate Thunder Porter from Watch City Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 84 out of 100 with 19 ratings