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An Brain Blásta | The Porterhouse Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
82
good
48 Reviews
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An Brain BlástaAn Brain Blásta
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
The Porterhouse Brewing Company
Ireland | website

Style: English Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-20-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
48
Ratings:
122
Avg:
3.57
pDev:
19.61%
 
 
Wants:
1
Gots:
10
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 48 | Ratings: 122
Photo of Knapp85
3.95/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This brew poured out as a nice looking reddish brown color. The head was a cream color and had a pretty good retention to it. The lacing wasn't bad either. The smell of the beer had a bigger hop profile than I expected. The amount of malt used was in there also to give this beer a really nice aroma. The taste was nicely balanced with the toasted malts as well as the lively hops. The mouthfeel of this beer was really drinkable. Overall this beer is worth trying. It was actually much better than I expected it to be.

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Photo of metter98
3.66/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is hazy deep amber in color and has a light to moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a short off white head that died down, leaving a large patch of bubbles in the center of the glass and a collar around the edge.
S: Rather complex aromas of brandy, raisins, toasted malts and toffee are present in the nose.
T: The taste mostly follows the smell and also has hints of earthy yeast and a light amount of bitterness, the latter of which which masks any sweetness.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation. Slight bits of warming are perceptible.
O: I enjoyed the complexities in the smell and taste of this beer. It is relatively easy to drink but pleasant enough to sip.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.76/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

330ml bottle. It's been a while since I've encountered this weird-ass, potential deep gash accident prone cap enclosure. WTF? Is this an Irish countermeasure to binge drinking, or something?

This beer pours a clear, dark red brick amber hue, with three fingers of densely foamy, bubbly, and slightly rocky pale beige head, which leaves a stellar array of sticky, holey cheese lace around the glass as it gently sinks away.

It smells of somewhat biscuity, sweet caramel malt, toffee pudding, complex dark fleshy fruit, demarara sugar, sultana raisins, and floral, leafy hops. The taste is rather bitter up front, but in a certain mirror-world, obfuscated way - floral, perfumed hops, mostly - with a further untethered grassiness, caramel and toffee malts, moderately sour store-brand raisins, restrained brown sugar, and a bit of stony flintiness, perhaps from the well sublimated alcohol.

The bubbles are tamed to the point of obsequious plainness, the body a sturdy medium weight, and mostly smooth, in an equally unfurnished manner. It finishes off-dry, the gritty caramel malt shedding its initial biscuit goodness, while the lingering dark sugar and somewhat boozed up leafy and weedy hops round things out.

A decent tipple, in the way of the main island's strong ales, fo sho, with the same UK malt and hop sensibilities that this brewer may not be altogether comfortable with admitting. Maybe not my favorite, vis a vis the same concept so prevalent here on our shores, but the name is cool, and I would imagine, if I were in Dublin town center, this would be a stellar alternative, to well, anything.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.9/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: At the Porterhouse pub in Dublin, I asked for a pint of this off the tap but they were out, so I was given a bottle. Poured into a goblet at the bar. The head is creamy and promising, three fingers size. It's ca clear but very dark amber-gould, like a spiced whiskey colour. Bold and appealing.

SM: Moderate strength scent with many notes: lots of hops, maybe some spice. If you've ever inhaled mould spores (and if you've lived in Ireland, you probably have), you know the musty smell in this beer. Definitely yeasty.

T: Wow. Complex yet refined. A sour note, a hint of cream, and a pleasant finish. This is the type of beer I expected when I first came to Porterhouse, and my favourite of all their own brews that I've tried.

MF: Smooth as it needs to be, but a bit too wet. Dries on the finish.

Dr: If not for the price, I'd order this left and right. If you're at the Porterhouse this is the only beer they brew themselves that's worth ordering.

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Photo of nickfl
3.8/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured with a small head of off-white foam, resting on top of a clear, amber-brown body. The head settles at a moderate pace and leaves nice lace.

S - Lots of toffee and caramel aromas with some butterscotch. A little bit of bready cracker malt in the background with no discernible hop character.

T - Mild caramel and biscuit malt up front with some spicy hop flavor. The hops grow stronger and more musty through the middle with increased caramel malt presence. the hop bitterness kicks in hard at the finish with a mustardy bite and some sharp grapefruit qualities to the bitterness.

M - Medium-thick body, moderate carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - Not bad, but not as good as it probably could be with more age. There is a nice malt character in the aroma, but the hops dominate the flavor profile. It has a level and harshness of bitterness that is surprisingly reminiscent of an American barleywine. This beer tastes a bit young to me and I imagine that it would mellow and grow more complex with six months to a year of age.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.13/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

330ml bottle - $3.99 at Hop City in Atlanta, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours out a clear, medium-dark brown body with a scattered layer of ivory suds.

Smell: Uninspiring malty elements of toffee, toast, and roast rounded out with notes of herb, dried lemon, and savory white pepper.

Taste: Toasted maltiness fastened to rigid roast and a low toffee-like sweetness. Hint of apricot dusted with ground white pepper. Just a touch of citrus. Medium-light bitterness. A bit more spice and a sliver of alcohol on the dry, lightly bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-light carbonation. Modestly creamy in the mouthfeel.

Overall: Drinkable but rather unexciting, it's one of those indistinct beers that, were it not for logging in these notes, I'd completely forget within a day or two.

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Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330 ml bottle into tulip glass, no bottle dating. Pours lightly hazy/cloudy deep ruby copper color with a 1 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of caramel, raisin, apple, pear, toast, brown sugar, light roast, bread, herbal, woodiness, and toast/yeast earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good complexity and balance of dark/bready malt, earthy hops, and fruity yeast ester notes; with solid strength. Taste of caramel, raisin, pear, apple, toast, brown sugar, bread, toffee, light roast, herbal, woodiness, and toast/yeast earthiness. Fair amount of earthy/woody bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, raisin, pear, apple, toast, brown sugar, bread, toffee, light roast, herbal, woodiness, and toast/yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Nice complexity and balance of dark/bready malt, earthy hop, and fruity yeast ester flavors; with a good malt/bitterness balance and no cloying flavors after the finish. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied; with a smooth, lightly creamy, and fairly crisp/bready mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is a nice Engish strong ale. Good complexity and balance of dark/bready malt, earthy hops, and fruity yeast flavors; and very smooth to sip on. This bottle was lightly oxidized, but was a nicely enjoyable offering.

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Photo of mdfb79
2.86/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

From 08/13/11 notes. Had on tap at Balston's Rustico in Arlington, VA. Served in a tulip.

a - Pours a dark red color with one inch of off white head and moderate carbonation evident. Few minutes of retention and lots of lacing.

s - Smells of light fruity malts, caramel malts, and toasted malts. Not bad, but not very strong at all. Pretty average.

t - Taste has even less than the nose. Some light fruity and toasted malts, but that is about it. A step down from the nose.

m - Medium body and low carbonation.

o - Overall not a bad or offensive beer, but just kind of there. Not much going on in either the nose or the taste. Wouldn't seek it out again.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.57/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had a nice detailed review written on this beer, let's go with a caramel chest nut colored ale with a light tan head forming thick bands of even lacing. Aroma has pine, herbal, citrus fruitiness that blends well with the inviting caramel malts and slightly sour notes. I explained the intricacies that the use in the hops in the nose don't transcend into to the hop flavor, a strong harsh hop bitterness was welcomed with each sip but I would like to see more cohesion like I did in the nose. The finish is green bitter dryness. Mouthfeel is ilght to medium bodied with a harsh level of carbonation, my main two issues with the beer were the carbonation and the temperature I served it at. On cask this would be Sublime I think it's time to visit Ireland, God Bless all those proud Irish out there because this beer is labeled 100% Irish brewed in Dublin of course.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
2.41/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

The caps on this brewery's bottles always strike me as funny. Lots of caramel and malts on the nose and flavor profile. It could work if it were more balanced, but unfortunately, it is not. Too much sweetness and it's cloying really. This is by far my least favorite beer from this brewery. The others I tried of theirs were much better.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
3.45/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Clear mahogany color with beige head. Aroma is malty with dark sugar and caramel notes. Taste is bittersweet and roasty. Body is quite light and fizzy. Not bad but there's not much going on.

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Photo of drabmuh
2.76/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Beer is red and mildly hazy with a big off white / brownish head that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass, head has nice retention overall and a great view to it. Looks like beer.

Aroma is sweet and mild with a slight roast to it, it smells fine.

Can you bottle boring? Apparently. Beer is too thin, watery, nearly no flavor, mild bitterness at the end. It's like water, big disappointment here, which is odd because I didn't have expectations. It doesn't taste bad I guess, it just doesn't taste like anything.

 513 characters

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.5/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from korguy123. Poured in to Founders tulip.

A - Medium to dark amber in colour; translucent. Half a finger of dirty white head.

S - A big floral hop aroma up front with some toffee, raisin and brown sugar notes.

T - Fairly big bitterness up front with a mix of floral and earthy hop flavours and a big sweet malt backbone. Toffee, caramel, raisin and brown sugar flavours are present.

M - Medium body. Moderate carbonation.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.92/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a MacAndrew's thistle glass. Pours a dark coppery red amber with a half finger off-white head with good retention and lacing. Aroma of caramel malt, dark and light fruit. Flavor begins with caramel and bready malt, light and dark dried fruit, developing a more nutty malt flavor and finishing with dark fruit, hints of wood and hops. A great malty body and interesting flavor progression. Flavors become more muted as the glass warms. Medium bodied with some creaminess. Some barley wine elements, but fits as an English strong ale. I will definitely return to this ale.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.47/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a two finger cream head that fades very slowly to a thin layer leaving a good lace. Deep clear copper/amber color. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Toasted malt nose and flavor is toasted malt and some caramel. $4.99 for a 330ml bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, MA.

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Photo of wl0307
3.72/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Tasted this beer by a pint at the Porterhouse's Covent Garden branch recently.

A: very dark copper to caramel colour, with a fast-fading out white head, and no lacing...
S: very deeply-running caramel and dark maltiness... it's actually straight-forward malty--not unpleasant but not balanced.
T: caramel-sweet... the dark malty flavour dominates the palate which is decorated with a tinge of sweet flavour of chewy black-current flavoured bubble gum, against a good backdrop of hops. In the aftertaste the hoppy bitterness is dryish, with a residual brown-sugary and sweet, preserved black plum kind of sticky mouthfeel towards the end.
M: overall it's a full-bodied and full-flavoured, albeit overly one-dimensional, strong ale, yet the soft mouthfeel proves a little bit too sweet for me. Having said that, it's still enjoyable, better enjoyed as a digestif...

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Photo of wordemupg
3.49/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

330ml pull tab bottle poured into tulip 29/1/14

A hazy dark amber with some ruby when held to the light, a finger of tan foam sits around far a few sips leaving some polka dot specks of lace

S green apple, toffee, cotton candy, butterscotch, some herbal notes, smells a little sour though, nothing bad but nothing great either

T spicy hops, caramels are soft, not as much sour apple, some bread, still lots of herbal notes, better then the nose but a little average

M silky upon entry and creamy from the bubbles, has some body to it and some English hops linger, perhaps a highlight

O OK brew but nothing to write home about, the nose left something to be desired and other then the solid feel it didn't really excel anywhere

another decent but brew that I wont remember, I could see some people loving the "English balance" and raving about this one but its a one and done for this guy

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.69/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Got this for a great price mixed and matched for $1.75

A - Somewhat clear deep red brown, with a 1/4 inch of head, very sticky off white head.
S - Wow has a somewhat chestnut rum smell with a touch of sour cherry and brandy.
T - Somewhat dry and very bitter that last long into the finish with hops. The caramel and toffee notes are minimal but its overall smooth.
M - Very dry and medium bodied.

Overall its a very hoppy and dry old ale, unfortunately I like my old ales less dry and sweet so I will not be getting this again.

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Photo of avalon07
3.16/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a copper color and a clear texture. There was an inch and a half of foamy, long-lasting head. Great lacing.

S: Not much of a smell here, but did have traces of malt in it.

T: Tasted of malt (a fair amount), a little bit of caramel, biscuits, and a surprisingly bitter, hoppy finish. In spite of all these ingredients, the flavor was pretty thin and kind of watery.

M: A decent amount of carbonation with a super dry, smooth finish. Medium-bodied.

O: This is a disappointing beer. Not horrible, but Porterhouse has done better work in the past.

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Photo of drpimento
4.55/5  rDev +27.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pretty good brew. Poured slightly cold with a nice, tan, creamy, thick head that soon settles to a light cover and loads of sticky lace. Color is a clear bronze with the ocassional, slow, lonely bubble trail. Aroma is malt, toffee, caramel, burnt sugar, dark ripe fruit. Flavor's like nose, is bitter up front, sweet in back and great carbonic tang to complete the picture. Body and carbonation are spot on. Finish is like flavor, sweetness tapers to a long bitter end, no alcohol buzz. Very drinkable beer. Wish I had more.

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Photo of AgentMunky
4.23/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a small cylindrical glass at the brewpub in Dublin.

A: Some creamy head and bubbles. Beautiful! Clear red-copper.

S: An odd creaminess, but with strong citrusy (grapefruity?) hops. Good.

T: Delicious! An Brain Blasta (for so it is listed in The Little Black Book of Beer and Other Stories) tastes a lot of an American double IPA. Allegedly "longer fermentation and thrice hopping" bring about the delicious bitterness that caresses the mouth with spot-on carbonation and strong malts that support the maintaste but fade away before the aftertaste.

M: Drying hops have a biscuity feel, carbonation is very well done, and there is a tinge of warm alcohol. Superlative.

D: Warming, absolutely scumptious, and a pleasure to drink. Definitely recommended, will drink again (in fact, I'll follow this with a pint of the stuff). Porterhouse's best beer.

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Photo of stcules
2.83/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Strong red colour, with oranged reflexes, compact foam, typical of an ale, not very persistent.
The smell is floreal and hop (hop flower), with some fruity (sweet cherry), and then caramel. Sweet, creamy and wrapping.
Medium body, sweet aftertaste, with vanilla, and bitter and toasted too!

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Photo of Cyberkedi
3.73/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, dark coppery brown with a very thick, fluffy and rather persistent cream-white head that leaves some good lacing. Malty aroma has a strong fruity note and a hint of grass. Flavor has a malty core, notes of apple and pear, and a woody and slightly bitter underpinning of hops. Smooth texture has good body and plenty of fizz. Blast your brain - and taste buds - with this one.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.11/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Poured into a perfect pint.

4.5 A: Clear brownish amber color. Two fingers of frothy beige head. Retention is very good and a good sized ring of lacing is left.

3.5 S: Minerally with earthy and lightly floral hops. Lemongrass herbalness. Roasty and toasty malts. Light caramel. Not bad.

3.0 T: Again, a big mineral component in this. Moderate hop bitterness. Earthy and spicy hop flavor. Light roast, lighter toast, and some caramel. Earthy mineral again for emphasis and maybe a big too much.

4.0 M: Lighter medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Good creaminess.

2.0 D: This gets harder and harder to drink as you progress through the glass. The mineral component keeps gaining strength. One 330mL is too much and that should never be the case.

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Photo of MDDMD
3.58/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-copper color with a nice off-white head and good lacing

S-toffee, malt, floral, hint of dark fruit

T-sweet malt, toffee, brown sugar, raisins, floral, mild bitter finish

F-medium body with light to moderate carbonation, smooth

O-interesting ale, flavors are decent but balance is off

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An Brain Blásta from The Porterhouse Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 48 ratings.
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