Porcine Unidragon | Clown Shoes

BA SCORE
90
outstanding
459 Ratings
THE BROS
-
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Porcine UnidragonPorcine Unidragon
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Clown Shoes
Massachusetts, United States
clownshoesbeer.com

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
This is Blaecorn Unidragon made with Beechwood Smoked malt, which adds a natural meaty note (there is no actual meat in the brew). Aged 100% bourbon barrels. Little piggies run, squeal to the heavens: Clown Shoes wishes you luck.

Added by MasterSki on 10-05-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
459
Reviews:
80
Avg:
4.06
pDev:
9.85%
 
 
Wants:
78
Gots:
82
For Trade:
7
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 459 |  Reviews: 80
Photo of Sammy
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

This bottle, a find in a recent US road trip, has some incredible characteristics. However it is much more boozy that the 12.5% abv would represent. Not that the booze is in the nose or even finish, but certainly in the aftertaste it is pure alcohol. A little thin for an IS. However the beechwood smoke was outstanding, and the bourbon is well integrated in the flavour. Dangerously drinkable.

 394 characters

Photo of Texasfan549
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of kylehay2004
4/5  rDev -1.5%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to mhksuccess for sharing this one at his tasting.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, smoked malt, campfire, and alcohol. Taste is much the same with a cocoa flavor and bourbon kick on the finish. There is a medium amount of roasty and smoky bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with a nice smoke presence all around.

 617 characters

Photo of GRG1313
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%

Photo of spycow
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev -1.5%

Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev -1.5%

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of kojevergas
3.05/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Self-identifies as an American Imperial Stout. Acquired for $14.00 at a bottle shop in the Los Angeles county area. 12.5% ABV confirmed. 1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with uninteresting label art and branded standard pressure cap served into a Mitchells of Lancaster flared stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given its reputation.

Served cold - straight from the fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a half finger tan colour head. Nice cream, nice thickness, bad (~1-2 minute) retention. The high ABV makes the retention more excusable, but it still leaves a lot to be desired. Body colour is a solid dark nontransparent black; not quite a jet black - but dark. Opaque. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Looks par for the style, but it's not unique or special. No overt flaws are obvious to me. No lacing whatsoever as the head recedes.

Sm: Bourbon, sure. Light vanilla, weak vague unevocative oak. Dark malts. I don't get any smoked malt notes. Not much in the way of woody notes either. Maybe some vague pork. Caramel. Cream. A moderate strength aroma which is not as complex nor as subtle as the brewers seem to want it to be. A mild to moderate strength aroma. No yeast character is detectable. I do get some vague alcohol, but it's not a hot or boozy aroma. I'm looking forward to trying it, but based on the aroma I think it'll be good at best.

T: The bourbon is roughly executed, lacking sophistication. Some wanting vanilla notes with too much sweetness. No refined oak or guiding woody notes. Dark malts. Chocolate malt. Caramel. Surprising acidity. Maybe a hint of coffee. Very light smoke; not at all rauchbier-esque in character but rather so light as to be nearly unnoticeable. Smokiness is rarely used as a means of imparting a subtle or light flavour, and this beer makes it clear why - it just isn't worth doing. Coconut. Brown and/or unrefined sugars. It feels forced; nothing about this beer comes off natural or cohesive. I want so much more roast than it provides; it comes off too sweet to me in a way that renders it artificial. Decently balanced, but far from ideal. No yeast character comes through. I do get some noticeable if light alcohol, though I wouldn't call it hot or boozy. The smoked malts/beechwood feels wasted here; it's just not deep or evocative. Fair complexity. No real subtlety. Sort of a colour by numbers bourbon barrel imperial stout; many of the beats are there, but it's just not what it should be.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Artificially slick. Imperfect carbonation. Thick, but not necessarily justified - the complexity just isn't there. Okay presence on the palate. Not biting or sharp. A biteen warm, but I wouldn't call it boozy or hot. Decent softness for the style. Suits the flavour profile in a middling generic way; it certainly doesn't come off custom-tailored to it.

Dr: You've got to bring more to the table than this to really stand out in this style. I sense a lot of wasted potential here; the beechwood and smoked malt seemed lost on the flavour profile. If you're going to go for a flavour, you've got to commit and really go for it. This lacks boldness and a willingness to experiment. Consequently, it's sadly forgettable. I wouldn't get it again; there's a wealth of superior and cheaper beers in the style out there. A decent offering from Clown Shoes, but one which convinces me that my policy of ignoring them for the time being is a good one. Not recommended. Drinkable but unremarkable. Doesn't hide its ABV well.

Low C+

Gets better as it warms. Probably best served slightly chilled.

 3,766 characters

Photo of oline73
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%

Photo of dmorgan310
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%

Photo of superspak
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 4/17/2013. Pours dense pitch black color with a small dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a thin lace cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass with some alcohol legs. Aromas of big dark chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt, smoked meat, light char, toast, toffee, vanilla, oak, clove, bourbon, and roasted earthiness; with a bit of booziness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of roasted/smoked malt and barrel notes; with good strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roasted malt, smoke, char, toast, toffee, vanilla, oak, clove, bourbon, and roasted earthiness. Fair amount of roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roasted malt, smoke, char, toast, toffee, vanilla, oak, clove, bourbon, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity and balance of dark/roasted malt and barrel flavors; with a nice roasted/sweetness/barrel flavor balance with no cloying flavors after the finish. Light-medium carbonation and fairly full bodied; with a very creamy, slick, and lightly chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is fairly well hidden with only a moderate warming present after the finish. Overall this is a highly excellent barrel aged imperial stout! All around great complexity and balance of dark/roasted/smoked malt and barrel flavors; and fairly smooth to sip on. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,467 characters

Photo of jlindros
4.4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours light fluffy 1/4 finger mocha colored head that fades fairly quickly, typical for that high abv, super dark pitch black beer.

Nose is great, some smoke starts out right away, a touch of smoked malt and light smoldering beachwood like smoke, then ridiculous chocolate, mostly cocoa nibs and darker chunk chocolate melting, milk chocolate, light powdered cocoa too, light roast, little chalky, caramel, nice nutty toffee, etc. Then barrel, nice vanilla barrel oak, light bourbon but def present. The more I nose the more the smoke goes away the more a myriad of malts seem to present themselves.

Taste is very nice too, starting with big dark malts, plenty of chocolate malt, cocoa nibs, melting dark chocolate and even bakers, powdered cocoa, and the works. Next comes the caramel and toffee, light nutty and semi sweet syrupy malt base, with a light fluffy nougat like, and little creamy. Smoke is there again but lighter, smoked malt flavor for sure but doesn't overpower, light smoked beachwood like again. Later a bitterness comes through, mostly from the darker malts, light earthy like hops. In the back end is the barrel, light oak and nice vanilla, light bourbon that gets mostly overpowered by the malts and seems more of an after thought. As it dries on the finish, little sticky, touch of booze, a light bitter roasty malt, earthy bitter hops, light barrel char, wisp of smoke, long lingering chocolate.

Mouth is fuller bodied, rich, slight creamy, light warming booze, little sticky syrupy, decent carb.

Overall quite nice. I should snatch up some more before it disappears. Nice malts, great chocolate, nice use of light smoke without acrid roast, good barrel addition although wish the barrel and bourbon was a bit more.

 1,743 characters

Photo of nickfl
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a small head of tan foam on top of a black body. An odd aroma of booze, chocolate, and roast grain. Caramel and chocolate malt up front. Vanilla, chocolate, and coffee in the middle and a finish with smoke and bourbon. A thick body, modately carbonating, and a sweet finish. Oddly, this starts out kind of weak with an almost chemical aroma, but it fades as the beer breathes and turns into something pretty nice. The smoke works nicely with the bourbon and while it is a little boozy it is quite drinkable.

 518 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.09/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of nathanmiller
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of XmnwildX12
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of mendvicdog
4/5  rDev -1.5%

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.26/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22 ounce bottle - $11.99 at Bullock's Wine & Spirits in Marietta, Georgia.

Appearance: As like the Blaecorn, it pours out an unassuming, black body with one inch (and only one inch) of tan suds. A thin glaze of lacing on the way down.

Smell: Slight smokiness from the charred, well-roasted malts edged by dark chocolate with a rather high cocoa content, scant dark fruits, smoked black licorice, mild-mannered resinous-traced hops, and quality bourbon.

Taste: Roasted, burnt malts with some sweetish, sugary treacle and malted milk balls covered in dark bitter chocolate. Moderate smokiness from the beechwood-smoked malts. An ebb and flow of sweet bourbon with notes of oak, brown sugar, coconut. Floral, resinous hops. Medium-plus bitterness. A handful of burnt raisins. Some alcoholic heat in there. Occasionally, you get an additional blip of sugar. Roast, brown sugar, bourbon-soaked brownies on the warming finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation. A bit chewy, a bit sticky.

Overall: The hard, harsh roastiness and heavy hoppiness of the Blaecorn is smoothed over quite a bit here in the Porcine, making the presentation much more enjoyable. Where, with the Blaecorn, I would be unlikely to revisit the beer, I could cheerfully go for another dose of this stuff.

 1,290 characters

Photo of drewone
4/5  rDev -1.5%

Photo of duceswild
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%

Photo of ZEB89
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%

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Porcine Unidragon from Clown Shoes
4.06 out of 5 based on 459 ratings.
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