Imperial Tanilla Porter | Knee Deep Brewing Company

BA SCORE
87
very good
57 Reviews
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Imperial Tanilla PorterImperial Tanilla Porter
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Knee Deep Brewing Company
California, United States
kneedeepbrewing.com

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
A 10 % ABV version of Tanilla. Of course we added more hop bitterness to balance the chocolate, expresso and vanilla malt sweetness. Drink at your own risk. This is a big beer, but drinks way too easy.

48 IBU

Added by 51mmz0rz on 07-25-2012

BEER STATS
Reviews:
57
Ratings:
201
Avg:
3.89
pDev:
11.83%
 
 
Wants:
20
Gots:
37
For Trade:
1
User Reviews
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Reviews: 57 | Ratings: 201
Photo of iheartmyTHO
4.24/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

For a boozy beer, it's quite smooth. I mostly taste coffee, chocolate, and nut flavors, and not much vanilla. But then again, I associate vanilla with an almost candy or pastry flavor. .

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Photo of macrosmatic
3.61/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Reviewed from notes. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into an El Catador Barrel-Aged glass.

A: Very dark brown, and opaque except around the edges. A thin tan head fades quickly atop a low amount of visible carbonation.

S: Chocolate and maltiness with vanilla sweetness. Maybe a light coffee roast to the malt. In any event, not a big aroma overall and trying to pull anything else out proves futile, at least when cold. NOTE: Nothing really changed as it warmed up.

T: Chocolate and a mild vanilla with associated sweetness up front. There’s a significant roastiness to the malts, providing some bitter counterpoint to the sweet flavors. A mild amount of smokiness in the background as well. Again, there's a light burnt coffee hanging around. A light hop bitterness combines with the roasted bitterness and a lingering baker’s chocolate in the hang.

M: An average body for a porter – nothing that brings to mind “Imperial”, whatever that means. The alcohol is noticeable but not hot. Fairly low carbonation sensation.

O: Not my favorite. Nothing offensive, but the vanilla isn’t huge despite the name implications. The mouthfeel could be thicker as well. It just doesn’t do anything to stand out...a decent roasty porter, I guess.

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Pouring a cellar temp bomber into a snifter. The beer pours a dark black motor oil hue with some light chocolate brown at the edges of the glass when I hold it up to the light. A creamy tan head of 3 cm foams up even after my gentle pour. The foam recedes slowly leaving a very sturdy edge layer and some windowpane lattice. There is also a wispy surface layer that seems to hang on through the sampling.
The aroma is roasted malt almost a little burnt like a rauchbier and some sweet vanilla notes. I dont get any hops and the 10% is not making its case here either. Appreciate the nose, but wouldnt mind a little more power at this stage.
The first sip reveals extremely fine and slightly tingly carbonation. Texture is very smooth and silky and coats my palate with a bit of a sticky covering.
Flavor is sweet malt with some chocolate, roasted malt and some vanilla. The roasted notes linger after each swallow and I do get a bit of grassy hop note on the finish as well. Still the booze is amazingly well hidden, 10% where??
I find this an enjoyable roasty porter and the price point was pretty good for the bomber too. Plus it is super sneaky in the booze department, if that is what you want. The beer isnt amazingly deep or complex for flavor but what it does bring is enjoyable malty goodness.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.79/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

$ 9.43 (Including tax)/bomber ($ 0.442/oz) At Spec’s DeZavala, San Antonio, TX
Bomber bottled 03/03/16 at 42 degrees into a hand washed and dried JK snifter; allowed to warm to 50 degrees
Aroma – like snorting a bottle of vanilla extract, initially a bit harsh. It fades as it warms.
Head large (Maximum 4.4 cm, aggressive pour), light tan, frothy, diminishing to an irregular three to seven mm ring with a large island of froth
Lacing excellent – reticulum of tiny to small bubbles
Body – dark brown/black, opaque
Flavor – initially vanilla. As it warms, the coffee comes sneaking up. No hops, no alcohol, no diacetyl.
Palate – medium, creamy, soft carbonation.

Appearance 4, Aroma 3.75, Flavor 3.75, Palate 4, Overall 3.75

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Photo of scootny
4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Huge head. A bit of staying power. Pretty good lacing. Clear, dark, ruddy brown liquid.

Great nose. Coffee, roasted grains, molasses, very faint alcohol sweetness. Vanilla cuts in subtly. Earthy hop presence

Taste is a like a vanilla and molasses infused espresso. Sweet malts in the front, lovely roasted malt and light char. Hops bitter mildly with a nice depth. Alcohol is nowhere to be found.

Feel is lightly syrupy, smooth, mild, and somewhat creamy. Drinks like a much lower abv brew. I could pound quite a few of these... Till I fell on my face hammered. Its kind of sneaky.

A great beer. Much better at cellar temperature than right out of the fridge.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.02/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with an off white head and lacing.

Aroma of roasted malt, smoke, vanilla and alcohol esters.

The taste has roasted malt and vanilla, slight earthy herbal quality, anise, black licorice, and coffee.

Medium bodied and smooth. Vanilla and roasted malt linger long into the finish.

A very solid porter overall.

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Photo of Bluerabbitbell
4.23/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

With Leah at industry public house in Robinson center. From tap. Definitely dark and sweet. If you like imperial stouts, go for it! 10% and you definitely taste it and FEEL it!

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Photo of alpinebryant
4.01/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Pours a very dark mahogany with no light visible at most edges , large mocha head sticky mocha lacing and tiny frothy bubbles on top after settling

S: Aroma of sweet lactose , chalk , dark roast malts, specialty grains, cocoa, chocolate malt, brown malt, patent malt

T: Flavors off the bat are very sweet, only slightly picking up the hop additions at the start after getting so much lactose at first. Very smooth and well balanced after initial impressions. Dark chocolate malts and rich crystal malts are abound with vanilla at the end, gently mixing in some bittering hops to make this an easy sipper.

M: Medium / high carbonation, medium body ]

O: Overall its a well rounded imperial porter. It is definitely hiding the alcohol behind the vanilla and dark roast malts very well.

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Photo of Roguer
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Lively dark brew; big fluffy dark tan head with very good retention.

Lots of roasty notes on the nose. A touch of slightly soured grapes, and a touch of vanilla.

Flavor-wise, it's a very tasty robust vanilla porter. The roasty notes are strongest up front, along with dry bittering hops. It mellows out over the palate to a smooth, chocolate/espresso/vanilla porter, carrying the roast but with less tenacity.

Full-bodied, but not quite thick. Lively. Extremely drinkable, showing little sign of the 10% ABV. If not for the high ABV and the large bottle format, this could easily be a workday porter.

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Photo of Rogerlb
3.69/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Another Knee Deep offering and I like their beers, generally. Imperial Tanilla porter, a variant of Tanilla I didn't know existed until I saw it in BevMo. 10% porter, I'm in.

This pours mostly black, with light coming through slightly at the edges, in a reddish amber tint. Minuscule head disappears and ends up a thin moonscape of bubbles.

The aroma is sweet malt, dark cherries, almost like a stout. The taste is more mellow, with toasted malts, caramel, and buttered toast. Lager burned a little. Vanilla comes in and there's a slight bitterness late, which I attribute to hops rather than coffee. This drinks like a stout at the beginning, then the mouth becomes like soda at the end. The cola-sweet is from malts rather than a strong vanilla, but still it is a smooth concoction.

Mouthfull ends up feeling a little watery as is style of porter. Quite strong and flavorful porter at the top, and the booze really well hidden. Nice drink, best when sipping slowly.

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Photo of biegaman
3.93/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Compared to the standard Tanilla, this Imperial version uses twice the vanilla yet looks even more chocolatey. Or, more accurately, awkward as it sounds, it appears more 'coffee-y'. This thing is black and basically flat, resembling a strong cup of heavy dark roast. Not even a movie set could lend any light to this opaque, intimidating looking beer.

You know what they say: if it looks like coffee, and it smells like coffee... let's just go ahead and name this one 'Joe'. The vanilla beans are certainly present but don't quite stack up to all the mocha and espresso overtones of the roasted barley. I assumed that distinctly rich Tahitian vanilla would dominate but it's merely an accoutrement, or so it seems...

The palate offers much more creamy sweetness. Some sips are like a visit to the ice cream shop. A good supply of earthy East Kent Goldings are working overtime to keep things under control and, in tandem with dry, roasty chocolate malt, do a considerably good job by distracting with bittersweet dark chocolate and toasted hazelnut-like notes.

Lost in all this is alcohol - did you know it's 10%? If the label didn't mention it I never would have known. Imperial Tanilla drinks like any standard-strength porter (though, in fairness, it offers about the same level and intensity of flavour too). Whether ultimately this is a pro or con depends on your point of view - I'm both impressed and underwhelmed at the same time.

Imperial Tanilla Porter won't blow you away like some of Knee Deep's imperial hoppy offerings; it doesn't pack that same punch despite its relatively rich mocha-vanilla profile. While I'm tempted to suggest bigger, better such beers from California I'll give this one credit for being arguably one of the more easily approachable (even if not the most affordable).

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Photo of tillmac62
3.92/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

BOD 12/4/15. Pours pitch black. World class head volume, lacing and retention.

Very good nose of chocolate, coffee, light roast and vanilla plus a hint of char.

Medium body that is quite smooth and has creamy hints from time to time on the finish. Quite outstanding carbonation / body balance with an effervescent middle and a nice, but not quite rollicking, prickly finish.

The flavor profile lacks a bit of complexity (due to poor separation) but does cover the 10% ABV so I consider it outstanding. Intensity is adequate while balance is world class. The heavier flavors (coffee, roast) lead then flow to a nice moderate molasses like sweetness in the middle. Here dark, slightly bitter, bakers chocolate emerges against a mild roast and hop bitterness backdrop. Vanilla gains in prominence from the middle through the finish. Quite drinkable but lacks the intensity and separation to really WOW you.

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Photo of CaptainInsaneO
4.41/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On draft at Queen's kickshaw

Black and mostly opaque. Bubbles on the glass below the head are reddish in tint, and that reddishness appears around the edges when you tilt the glass to sip, almost like an extra dark cola. The head is thick and white beige like coffee icecream, creamy and fluffy but disappeared after a few sips.

Smell - can't get much off the smell besides alcohol and a little vanilla. Not offensive or even bad just not stand out- I'm not sticking my nose in just to luxuriate in it. Don't expect to glean much off the smell besides it's 10% abv and some vanilla, like i said.

Taste - very tasty, better than most vanilla forward brews I've had. Mostly vanilla. Vanilla in beers often takes a far back seat to chocolate or coffee or roastyness, this one let's the vanilla shine and doesn't let anything get in the way. ironically I can't taste much of the alcohol that's in the forefront of the nose. I personally love a big smooth stout with brunch or breakfast and this really does the trick. Not too complex, vanilla and subtle roast. Not very bitter, but again it's just what the doctor ordered for me. Good for desert or with a boozy brunch. I like it a lot.

Feel - reeeeally smooth, feels more stouty than porter-y. Velvety without much or almost any burn.

Overall I love it but a 10oz pour is plenty.

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Photo of BeerSamurai34
1.74/5  rDev -55.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

GROSS. My bottle was infected so I held off to try another one before I reviewed it. I bought another one and it was also infected. Terrible sour taste and really big head with big bubbles. Yuck.

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Photo of Pahn
4.23/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Stag's Head in Manhattan.

Appearance: black with a longlasting tan head. Ancient tree like lace rings left down the glass.

Smell: Cocoa, mild vanilla, roasted malt, some espresso beans. Nice.

Taste: Whoa, a vanilla added beer with *subtle* vanilla! And a 10% beer with very little alcohol heat. Main flavors are cocoa, nutty/airy roasted malt, and really strong, aromatic coffee (good coffee). Vanilla is there as a highlight throughout. Really, really solid dessert stout flavors. Pretty masterful, honestly.

Mouthfeel: Full side of medium bodied. Super creamy. 40 IBUs and 10% ABV sounds like a sweet disaster but nope, this is perfectly balanced semisweet stout flavors, thick feel, definitelt bitter enough. No dryness, but not chewy or chalky or sugary, just balanced and good. Really impressive.

Overall: Decadent, creamy stout, excellently balanced. Will get again.

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.8/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22 oz bottle, dated 01/11/14 - so more than a year old

black, with decent off-white head. not much lacing. nice big vanilla aroma. the taste is definitely dominated by vanilla and maybe a little coffee flavor - but not overly sweet. medium to thick body, good mouthfeel, smooth.

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Photo of dpgoblejr
4.85/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A chocolate fudge sweetness dominates the aroma, though somewhat subdued, with a slight tan head yielding spots of lacing. Chocolate covered coffee flavored marshmallows is my best way of explaining the taste. Carbonated with a creamy, smooth finish. Outstanding Imperial Porter that I will have try again!

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Photo of CHickman
3.5/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Lark in East Northport, NY; pours pitch black color with a thick 2 finger foamy dark tan head that faded slowly and left very good spotty lacing.

Smells of toasted grains, dark chocolate, roasted notes, piney hops, fruit and acrid smoked sheet metal. There is some brown sugar and syrup or molasses coming through, but the metallic smell throws it all off as a porter for me.

Thankfully it tastes better than it smells with sweet malt, bitter coffee grinds, cocoa powder, toasted grains, dark chocolate, yeast or wheat bread, piney hops, dark fruit and like the nose some penny flavor. It lacks the rich roasted aspects and molasses I hoped for but it does hide the ABV completely.

Mouthfeel is thin and watery, with very mild carbonation, a little chewy feel somehow and a slightly bitter chocolatey finish with a metallic yeast touch that's on the dry side. Overall it was alright, but not as good as I expected since the Knee Deep IPA's are very tasty.

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Photo of ksimons
4.04/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A-very dark brown, almost black, with two fingers worth of light tan head

S-chocolate, dark coffee with a bit of roast, and vanilla sweetness

T-chocolate and vanilla with a light nuttiness to it and some roasted dark coffee in the finish. No alcohol detected in the taste.

M-medium body, very creamy, moderate carbonation

Overall very enjoyable, nice amount of creaminess and chocolate and vanilla sweetness

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Photo of FLima
3.87/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Deepest black color with a thick beige head with good retention.
Nice aroma with notes of vanilla, cocoa, molasses and coffee.
Delicious flavor with notes of vanilla, licorice, coffee, cocoa, grapefruit, plums, molasses, mild tobacco and earthy hops. Quite dry aftertaste with its residual notes.
Light bordering medium body with mild carbonation.
Extremely pleasant Imperial Porter with great malt complexity, lots of vanilla and balanced with earthy hops.

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Photo of Beerswag
3.77/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Looks nice with a pitch black body and fluffy 4 finger almond colored-big-bubbled head. Smell is toned, and mild coffee,chocolate roasted malts, with the vanilla apparent.taste is bitterness of dark cocoa, coffee, vanilla, hop-bitterness from the hops, no fruit from the hops apparent. slightly dry finish not too sweet thick body syrupy nuttiness coming from the roasted malts and the coffee sticking in the background and on the nose.getting a little bitterness on the finish from the vanilla and hops melding, however not overdone. Would pair nice with vanilla desserts such as ice cream or flambésor with a cheddar bisque,or extra aged Nutty cheeses.

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Photo of Raymonkaufmann
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Bottle retrieved in Astoria NY.

Frothy head with nice lacing.

Let it warm to just above room temperature. Vanilla / Coffee noise with burnt candy finish.

No alcohol burn even at 10% ABV

Great beer for the colder months ahead.

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Photo of dar482
4.22/5  rDev +8.5%

The beer has a rich smooth mouthfeel. Not viscous, but quite competent for the ABV. There's a lot of chocolate, almost like a chocolate cake. A good amount of espresso bitterness as the beer smooth out with a gentle amount of vanilla. Vanilla mostly shines on the back end. A very drinkable beer as the hops balance the beer on the finish.

A very good imperial porter that is deserving of a good rating.

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Photo of samtrillo
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Looks like a hot mocha.
Tastes of bittersweet chocolate and lots of espresso. The vanilla adds a perfect amount of buttery smoothness and the hop bitterness balances this out to really give the feel that you're drinking an $8 hipster coffee drink at dumb Starbucks at not an $8 bomber from Bevmo.

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Photo of Hophazzard
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Wow! I'm not a huge fan of porters in general but I like this beer. High %ABV with deep sweet & smokey vanilla chocolate and tobacco body that has a smooth finish with just a hint of alcohol burn at the the end.

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Imperial Tanilla Porter from Knee Deep Brewing Company
3.89 out of 5 based on 201 ratings.
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