Tanilla Porter | Knee Deep Brewing Company

72 Reviews
Read the review
Tanilla PorterTanilla Porter

Brewed by:
Knee Deep Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Made with only grade-A Tahitian vanilla beans, Tanilla carries a smooth chocolate flavor complemented by the delicate intensity of vanilla beans, and a rich aroma of coffee.

Added by Beerandraiderfan on 04-20-2011

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 72 | Ratings: 309
Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.76/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark chocolate brown, with a whitish beige head of 2 fingers. Very frothy, recedes slowly.

Aroma reminds me of Keebler Elf Fudge sandwich cookies (the ones in the shapes of the elves). Some chocolate fudge, vanilla, and coffee grounds. The aroma is quiet though and hard to nose this conclusion.

Flavor is mostly roast malts, carafe malts, and coffee...some faint vanilla, tobacco, molasses, and fudge. Some waxy candle flavors, too. It all kind of clashes.

Feel is pretty decent - a nice roastiness accompanies everything and makes for a great dryness throughout. Carbonation is about perfect.

Overall, this beer isn't terrible, but it's not great either. I'd have it again if it were on tap and nothing else were around.

 729 characters

Photo of biboergosum
3.59/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle - with some very south seas island label stylings.

This beer pours a clear, very dark orange brick-tinted brown colour, with three fingers of puffy, rocky, and chunky beige head, which leaves some random splattered lace around the glass as it slowly subsides.

It smells of roasted and bready caramel malt, a bit of biscuity toffee, semi-sweet real vanilla, bittersweet cocoa powder, a touch of cafe-au-lait, and some tame earthy, musty, and herbal hoppiness. The taste is gritty and grainy caramel malt, a lesser plain toffee sweetness, some free-range ashiness, earthy and musty vanilla, subtle mocha java shop essences, weird sour fruity notes, and more laid-back leafy, weedy, and floral green hop bitters.

The carbonation is adequate for the job at hand, via its supportive frothiness, the body a kind of weak medium weight, and more or less smooth, with just a hint of damp smoke taking a minor tithe here. It finishes off-dry, the muted caramel/toffee contending with some limping to the end vanilla.

Overall, this one starts off well, but then loses steam rather quickly - it's not a bad brew, but it seems to have an identity crisis. The guest vanilla doesn't really do much that could be considered noteworthy, and the remaining beer doesn't exactly convince me of its porter chops. Yeah, much gets misplaced in the mire here, I'm afraid.

 1,367 characters

Photo of Ciocanelu
4/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown reddish color with tan head. Aroma is full-on vanilla ice cream with chocolate topping. Taste starts with chocolate, cacao and sweet finish. Body is quite light. Overall it's quite nice and easy to drink.

 210 characters

Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.91/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served in a chalice.

Appearance: Thin dark brown Amber with medium bubbles and a light tan head rising maybe half a finger's length. Head drops to Nadia after two or three sips.

Smell: Ligt vanilla and toffee.

Taste: Like the smell just more amplified. Vanilla and sugars with minimal bitterness.

Mouth: Medium carbonation. Almost sticky but could be better with notes of light American coffee at the end.

Overall: Descent brew but still packs a punch with flavor. Awesome gift from a good friend and worth inhaling when the night is good. Salud!

 556 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
2.83/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Light brown pour yields 1/6" off white head. Vanilla absent, some coffee like aroma notes present.

Taste was a hodgepodge of adjunct sweeteners, wasn't matched well mouthfeel wise with the base. Brown malt came off too light. Wasn't what I would call a robust porter hearty enough to take on all the adjunct sweeteners.

Expensive in the bomber format.

 361 characters

Photo of BillT916
4.11/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a solid dark, little foam, hint of sweetness in the smell that doesn't carry over much to the pallet. Hits the tastebuds with more a hint root beer and vanilla

 165 characters

Photo of fitzy84
3.97/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bought at the Beer Shop in East Longmeadow, MA. The beer pours with a dark, black appearance with a light brown, foamy head. Aromas include a hint of vanilla, but it mostly smelled like it had light coffee; good but not strong. Taste, however, improved upon the muted aromas with a great coffee cream taste mixed with malt with a light spice aftertaste. Mouthfeel is generally creamy, but there is some good carbonation to this drink. Overall, I did enjoy this porter, but I wish the aroma was stronger.

 503 characters

Photo of boilerwillie
4.17/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I don't drink a ton of porters, but this beer is very tasty in my opinion. I'm a bit surprised it's not getting higher marks.

I'm a big fan of vanilla, so maybe I'm bias, but it's full of flavor, sweet (but not too sweet), and easy to drink. There's something missing in making it a great beer, but overall, a nice porter.

 325 characters

Photo of Totalpackage411
3.11/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Very earthy taste, not your typical porter. Very light compared to most porters I've had. good for easing your way into the more rich and stronger porter style beers

 167 characters

Photo of OmahaKF
3.06/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Smell is lactose sweetness, and bittersweet chocolate (somewhat muted smell overall).

Taste is sweet like flavored milk, slightly creamy, with only hints of vanilla. Mouthfeel is really thin for a porter. Overall a slightly sweeter than normal porter but nothing super special.

 280 characters

Photo of stevoj
3.47/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Bottle from Brewers Haven. Dark brown with small foamy head. Immediate vanilla aroma, more in the taste, which also brings some cocoa and roast grain bitterness. Smells sweet, without being overly sugary. Bitterness lingers enough to kill any remnants of the perceived sweetness.

 279 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
3.62/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by someone Friday night, Thanks!
Deep golden color with a small head. Huge vanilla on the nose masks most of the caramel and bready malt underneath. you could use this when baking but nice to sip on.

 213 characters

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.5/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Wet, Vanilla, Chocolate, Smooth

Brewed with grade-A Tahitian vanilla beans shows a large emphisis on this character though less on the “Porter” side on things. Faint cordial or cooking extract flavor in the middle. Subtle chocolate and coffee flavors but no real burnt or roasted character and could easily be confused with a Brown Ale. Is it tasty? Yes. Is it enjoyable? Sure, why not but there is still something left to be really desired here.

STYLE: American Porter | ABV: 6.3% | AVAILABILITY: Year-round

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine issue #97 (FEB 2015)

 571 characters

Photo of superspak
3.8/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled on 10/15/2014. Pours crystal clear very dark brown color with a 2 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big vanilla, caramel, toffee, milk chocolate, creamed coffee, toast, and light herbal. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/roasted malt and vanilla notes; with good strength. Taste of vanilla, caramel, toffee, milk chocolate, creamed coffee, toast, and light herbal. Slight herbal/roast bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of vanilla, caramel, toffee, milk chocolate, creamed coffee, toast, and light herbal on the finish for a good bit. Good complexity and solid robustness of dark/roasted malt and vanilla flavors; with a great malt/vanilla balance and minimal cloying sweetness after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth and fairly creamy mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very good vanilla porter. All around good complexity and solid robustness of dark/roasted malt and vanilla flavors; and very smooth to drink. A nicely enjoyable offering.

 1,268 characters

Photo of metter98
3.62/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is black when viewed from afar; upon closer inspection it is clear and very dark red in color when held up to a bright light. It poured with a half finger high off white head that died down but left a short head and thick lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of vanilla and dark malts are present in the nose. The malts become a little stronger as the beer warms up.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste has foremost flavors of vanilla beans along with notes of dark malts and hints of sweetness.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: Once the porter warms up, the vanilla becomes dominate and makes for this as being a nice dessert beer.

Serving type: bottle

 749 characters

Photo of RonfromJersey
3.48/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

One of the more Cocoa-Cola looking beers I've seen, from the dark brown body, the ruby red highlights, and the loudly fizzing light tan head. This head stabilized though and stuck around at three fingers though. Good dense lace.

Vanilla and coffee aroma. Pleasant, but could be a little more assertive and inviting.

Taste is vanilla and coffee, some earthy hop notes, not a lot of complexity.

Light for a porter mouthfeel. Could do with some more chewability.

Not bad, not great, I've had much worse vanilla porters, but not a Knee Deep offering I'm looking to revisit.

 575 characters

Photo of RyanK252
3.98/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at Spokeasy Public House

A: Pours dark brown, not a lot of light passes through, with minimal light brown head that disappears.

S: Sweet vanilla, dark roasted malt, a little chocolate, and a tiny hint of coffee.

T: Follows the nose. Sweet vanilla and dark malt complimented by a little chocolate, with a very light coffee bitterness on the finish.

M: Light to medium body, light carbonation

O: Pretty solid. More sweet than bitter and fairly light drinking. Tasty option on a hot day when you want something dark. Also probably would work great in a beer float.

 575 characters

Photo of smakawhat
3.3/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass. Bottled May 7th 2014.

Simple dark walnut body, with a two finger light cocoa brown to tan head. Head settles to a real foamy cap, and leaves a simple thin puck while slowly settling down. Pretty much a textbook color porter and non aggressive presence.

Mild hints of roast, and soft sweetness. Not really getting any hints of vanilla off of this at all. Clean but not much going on here and a bit closed. Some cake like sense a bit but very hard to detect. Otherwise kind of neutral.

Palate comes forth kind of ordinary. Some odd faint tang but very mild sourness mixing with a large roasted bitterness. Slightly hinting towards acrid, but also wit a touch of mild fizz in the back, of a slightly wet body. Really not getting any mid vanilla off of this at all. Roast feel comes out with a hint of popped seltzery quality, making the bitterness a bit strange.

Overall an ok porter, but really missing the vanilla quality the beer suggests and claims it offers.

 1,024 characters

Photo of BierJager89
4/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours black with a mocha head.

S: Nose has dark roast coffee, some dark chocolate, but very little vanilla.

T: Strong dark roast coffee followed by a decent amount of vanilla, then dark chocolate and more coffee in the finish.

M: Full bodied and not smooth... until it warms up. Vanilla becomes much more noticeable and the body becomes smoother and creamy.

O: Definitely drink this a bit warmer than your average beer. It's a solid vanilla porter. I definitely like the style.

 484 characters

Photo of Hopinista
1.15/5  rDev -66.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

I wish I could give this a proper review, but the bottle i got was infected. I knew something was up when I poured a small amount and it gushed out of the glass. Taste is chocolatey brett. I was very excited to try this too so it's an extra disappointed.

 254 characters

Photo of Auraan
4.1/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep brown, almost black, with a thin tan head that dissipated to a tan ring, leaving a slight bit of lacing. Looks quite nice, but a bit dark for a porter. Scents of roast malt, vanilla, and slight coffee. A good porter scent with the nice addition of vanilla. Flavors of roast malt, slight dark chocolate and black coffee and some slight sweetness throughout, finishes with more black coffee and a slight hint of vanilla at the end. Aftertaste is bitter with black coffee and dark chocolate. A good classic porter flavor with a nice bit of vanilla. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, slightly thick, with low carbonation. About half-way between a porter and a stout and quite easy to drink. Overall quite the nice vanilla porter, it drinks smooth and has the nice flavor of a porter supporting the vanilla.

 810 characters

Photo of vegassommelier
3.09/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

In searching for a certain vanilla porter I had on a vacation that I failed to write down or snap a photo of, I came across this offering. some solid value here, with a 22oz bottle going for $5.
The vanilla is not that prevalent, the opposite of what I was worried about. Much more malty and stout-ish, with a faint vanilla finish. Good mouthfeel with a dry, sightly bitter finish.
A good beer, well made, but nothing I would rush to get again.

 445 characters

Photo of DedicatedToFun
4.25/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Good, smooth, robust porter, dark, good head, smells like chocolate, drink with friends, on bottle, smells as good as it tastes, don't underestimate this beer. Bought in a larger bomber and got the light kind, not the dark, not the hoppy, just the smooth version.

 263 characters

Photo of Fatehunter
2.92/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

A half finger of tan head on a black body.
The aroma is single-mindedly vanilla.
The taste is moderately sweet moving sweeter at the end. The middle has an unexpected bitterness. The profile is a bit disjointed.
Smooth texture with low carbonation and thicker body.
If you like sweetness this is for you.

 304 characters

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.67/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a near black, deep mahogany brown with an off-white, 2 finger head. Decent retention. Shows a fair amount of lace with decent stick.

Smell - Strong notes of vanilla, with hints of chocolate and, less so, coffee.

Taste - A lot of natural vanilla favoring upfront, dominates much of the roasted malt aspect of the beer. Very little in the way of classic porter flavors, opting instead for what I can only describe as a "french vanilla ice cream topped with a sparse amount of mocha flavored topping". Finishes with a tinge of bitter coffee flavoring.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with a fair amount of carbonation. Smooth and easy to drink. Finishes with a bit of sharpness.

Overall - Not a bad beer overall, but far from anything you might associate with your classic American porter. Too much dominating vanilla character. Might make for a hell of a root beer float partner, but in so far as beer is concerned, it's so-so, and definitely not worth the $7 price tag it comes with.

 999 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Tanilla Porter from Knee Deep Brewing Company
3.43 out of 5 based on 309 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.