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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 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.

 390 characters

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.

 790 characters

Photo of GONZALOYANNA
3.12/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

330ml bottle.Snifter glass.Enjoyed on jun´11.Reddish deep amber.Off white froth.Brief large bubbled crown.Sweet malt & floral hop aromas. Crispy upfront.Green grape flavor.Medium body,high carbonation. Pungent alcoholic mouthfeel.Very dry finish.Astringent.Harsh quincy aftertaste.

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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 spdyfire83
3.7/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

191st Review
Served in a glass
On-tap at Porterhouse Central

A: Slightly hazy medium cranberry. 0.75 (white) fingernail head.

S: Mostly sweet butterscotch here with hints of wheat, burnt malt, and dark fruit esters. Alcohol definitely coming off the nose, but not too overpowering.

T: Rich and complex - lots going on here. Dark fruit with caramel/toffee sweetness up front followed by sticky butterscotch. Hints of nuttiness and more dark fruit comes into play near the back. Overall, there is more malt than hops here and very subtle bitterness. Alcohol presence is articulated from start to finish, but not overbearing.

M: Medium bodied with dull carbonation.

O: The ABV on this beer is not terribly high, but you can definitely feel it warm the soul a bit. The complexity is welcoming and it is very easy to drink (especially as it warms). Good job for the style! My favorite of all the ales offered at the Porterhouse.

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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 Eramen
3.67/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - A dark amber colour, one inch head which retains fairly well.

S - Strongly caramel, malts, and other highly sweet notes, along with floral.

T - Biscuit malts, caramel & confectionery, some fruit, a little tinge of alcohol, and a nice hoppy punch near the end. It's quite a sweet beer indeed.

MF - Medium carbonation that greatly enhances the taste with a superb body that's a pleasure to just roll around the mouth.

O - Very decent beer, one to return to again and again.

 480 characters

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 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 AEK
2.81/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

330ml brown bottle poured into a Hobgoblin branded pint pot.

A. A deep, almost blood orange coloured beer topped by a bubbly, slightly off-white head 1 finger thick. Head retention is good.

S. Faintly floral, musty, a little zesty fruit followed by some alcoholic heat when the beer has warmed up sufficiently.

T. Is there anything in here to taste? Pitifully bad for a beer of this strength, not even any alcoholic warmth to it. Oh dear!

M. Thin bodied considering it is a 7% ABV beer.

D. Just goes to prove that appearances can be deceiving. WHAT a let down. There is absolutely nothing in this beer to tell you it is a 7% ale, no alcoholic warmth, too thin bodied and nothing on the palate. Woefully bland, a poor performer all round.

 742 characters

Photo of JohnnyChicago
3.93/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the Porterhouse Central; poured into a tulip pint.

A: Deep, dark red with a one finger head.

S: Not to much smell to pull of this one. There is a hint of carmel and bittersweet hops, but that's about it.

T: The hops hit first, sweet honey and tropical fruits follow, and a defined malty sweetness in the finish.

D: Really smooth and crisp with a oily mouthfeel and a sweet finish. A great aperitif to one of the many excellent meals available at the Porterhouse.

 476 characters

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 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.

 1,052 characters

Photo of Yeastcakes
3.75/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Brewpub near Trinity College
Serving notes: cool, imperial pint glass
A - alcohol comes through, but not too hot. Some raisins and oatmeal.
A - quarter-inch of head, clear light amber.
M - light body with medium carbonation. Alcohol heat that first appears in the aroma is here as expected and also at a pleasant (not-too-hot) level.
T - Some dark fruits (raisins) with good malt body. Has enough hops to back things up.
D - While this is one of their heavier beers it goes down easily enough and if you've already had a meal at the pub you can still continue the evening.

 572 characters

Photo of Oxymoron
3.41/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Advertised as a English barleywine versus an English Strong listed here. Arrived a mostly merky dark drown color. Some lighter brown hues around the edges and a light red tint to it. A light ring around the glass for foam, but did remain for the tasting. But no lacing to speak of.

The nose is malty with a more caramel and light melonadian aroma. Some chocolate and a bit of brown sugar aromas as well. A bit sweet but there is no hops really to speak of to balance off of. There is a yeasty aroma but mostly clean. A bigger plum aroma with some black currant and figs in the mix. Some butter as it warms as well.

The taste is a bit more balance but still sweet and malty. The malt is similar with more of a sugary caramel note. Some sugary notes and an almost Special B like quality. The hops are very limited. No real bitterness, which would really help versus the sweetness. Some minor earthy hop notes in the finish. The yeast is very present as well. Some plums, bubblegum and weirdly enough, gummy drops. The diacetyl some out more though and really off sets some of the nice esters.

The body is moderate, but the sweetness gives it a perception that it's bigger than it really is. The sweetness is a bit of a deterrent. Some slickness as well, which really hints at the diacetyl. Overall some nice complexity but some major flaws really hold this beer back. Clean those out and now were talkin.

 1,405 characters

Photo of atis
3.64/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear red brown with dense 1/2 finger slightly off-white head, excellent retention, head lasted almost till the end of the glass, very good lacing. Aroma is mild caramel malty, no alcohol, despite hight ABV. Taste is rather intense nutty and citrus bitterness, hints of wild fruit, berries, dry finish and long lasting bittery citrus aftertaste. When it warms up, caramel malt is stronger felt. Mouthfeel is smooth, rather high carbonation.

Overall, the beer felt very hoppy and bittery, harsh sometimes, but what I liked was that alcohol was very well hidden. Quite drinkable.

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Photo of jspruit
3.7/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap at Porterhouse Temple Bar location-it was the strongest of their offering's on tap.

Pours a nice copper with some red amberness that can be seen when held up to the light a bit. White one-finger head that settles away after a bit with little lacing.

Smells a bit malty and caramely with some hints of hops too-not bad.

The sweet maltiness is the most dominating characteristic but the bitter dry hops provide a nice contrast. Not too complex of a beer, but I like it.

The dryness kicks in at the end and that for me is the last part that your mouth is left with-I don't mind it though.

I do think that this is one of the best on-tap Irish beers that I have had here in Ireland, but I can't drink too much of it though because of the 7% ABV. I'm glad that it's so close as I'm going to be sure to have more of it.

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Photo of cypressbob
3.45/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On tap at the Porterhouse, Dublin

Pours with a deep red amber body, tight slightly off white head with good retention. Some lacing down the glass

Smell, some malt, almost cask like on the nose (slightly yeasty), some sweet esters and a few floral notes

Taste, served far too cold so it really knocked alot of flavour out the window. I let the pint warm for 10mins or so, then sampled. Sweet caramel malt, some dry biscuity crispness also, a few esters lingering in the background.Very little hop profile, mainly a huge whack of malt, some yeast on the finish

A little unbalanced and unrefined, slightly harsh also but solid none the less

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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...

 869 characters

Photo of cbl2
2.68/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Appearance:

Orangish brown with little to no head (off white)

Smell:

Tough to discern an odor inside the bar (I was in Dublin just prior to the smoking ban), but the aroma I am getting isn't exactly pleasing.

Taste/Mouthfeel:

At first a short sharp shock of hops followed by a fruity (tropical) flavor. Finishes with a floral quality due to the hops. Not my favorite.

Note:

Woke up the next morning, with little memory of the night before. Definetly a brain blaster.

 488 characters

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!

 292 characters

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

Tasty,smooth, hoppy, firm, very nice drop actually, disguises the 7% alc well. Some sweet lightly caramelly hops, and bitter-ish citric hops, i found it a bit sticky at times, but generally pretty soft in texture and as i said before, it disguises the alcohol quite well, pretty tasty.

 285 characters

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