Big Chimney's Porter | Mad Fox Brewing Company

very good
18 Reviews
no score
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Brewed by:
Mad Fox Brewing Company
Virginia, United States

Style: English Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by TMoney2591 on 07-13-2010

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 18 | Ratings: 37
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.84/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Nationals Park in Washington, DC.

Pours an almost opaque super dark crimson-brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa powder, earth, and citrus zest aromas. Taste is much the same with char, cocoa powder, and earthy hop flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roast and hop 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 pretty good beer that is hoppier than I was expecting and almost reminds me of an American Black Ale.

Serving type: on tap.

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Photo of HattedClassic
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On cask.

Head is a nice creamy dark tan color. Beer itself is a dark black with some brown notes.

Smell and taste have some very good notes. Sweet milk chocolate and coffee notes. Coffee notes are stronger. Deep roasted malts underneath it all. Very light hop note. Medium caramel notes.

Smooth and creamy. Supposed to be heavy but feels light.

Overall, a fantastic English poeter.

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Photo of blackie
3.88/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

draft at the brewpub

a: deep charred nutshell brown in color, sporting a thick, frothy dark tan head with good retention and heavy lace

s: dark roasted barley, woody and nutshell, light caramel, earthy hop aromas, toasted grain

m: carbonation low and creamy, body around medium, delicate and smooth

t: a medium-strength porter flavor - plenty of dark roasted barlely and some underpinnings of biscuity malt with a very light sweetness, but not heavily flavored by any means, ends with an earthy hop flavor and light bitterness

o: a nice porter, balanced and easily drinkable with plenty of character

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Photo of drabmuh
3.97/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewery, beer is black with a thin lazy tan head of small bubbles, no lacing, moderate carbonation, low retention, looks OK.

Aroma is roasty and sweet. Smells good.

Beer is medium to light in body, sweet on the palate and roasty bitter on the finish. It is a fine porter, nothing too special but well made and I'd have it again.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.91/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Single finger head with nice lacing and excellent retention on a deep amber brown body. Mostly earthy and wet sock hops with minimal malts in the aroma. Flavor is more full than expected from the aroma with roasted malt, sweet milk chocolate and coffee notes. Medium to full body and moderate carbonation. Nice example of an English porter but more flavorful than most.

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Photo of mdfb79
4.05/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From 08/13/11 notes. Had on tap and cask at ad Fox. Served in a pint glass.

a - Pours a very dark mahogany brown color with one inch of tan head and low carbonation evident.

s - Smells of roasted notes, roasted coffee, light chocolate, and light vanilla. Very roasty and nice.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, sweet chocolate, light coffee, and light bread. More chocolate than the nose and less coffee, which I'm a fan of.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation, very smooth and easy to drink. Great mouthfeel.

o - Overall a really easy to drink, well done porter. One of Mad Fox's best beers so far in my opinion, would certainly have it again.

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Photo of novajeepfreak
4.38/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First beer I had with them....excellent beer....could use a tad more body in my opinion but than again, I'm pretty picky about dark beers....much lighter than say a Guinness which aint a bad thing to be honest....great beer, and of course, I'll have it again.

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Photo of Chaney
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is now called "Big Chimney's Porter." It's still in the English style and at a 6% ABV.

My wife LOVES this brew!

A: It poured about as dark as you can imagine, with a nice 3/4 finger head or so that stayed a mere sawdust formation on top of the brew throughout the session.

S: Nice coffee and dark fruit notes that are subtle, yet effective.

T: I've gotten used to Mad Fox's taste profile now, and it works very well in this setting (not so much in some of their other brews. Medium bodied, yeasty, and followed by some really nice coffee notes.

M: Not too thick, but still thick enough for my palate. The lacing was substantial and the bitterness was divine.

O: I would rank this up their with many of Mad Fox's best efforts.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
3.5/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a mostly opaque black with a small froth of beige head. Has a semi-sweet roasty dark chocolate nose with a touch of English hops. Starts with pretty good fullness and a touch of dark malty sweetness with a heavy, roasty malty presence and a more bitter and dry roasty finish. Could use a little more sweetness to balance the bitterness, but still a decent brew.

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Photo of yourefragile
4.27/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the brewpub.

Easily my favorite Mad Fox beer sampled so far. This beer won't blow anyone away but is just a well made English Porter. Dark brown near black color with a thin tan, retentive head. Nose and flavor are a robust malty blend with well balanced hops and roast flavors. Mouthfeel is soft and thick with a long lasting mild bittersweet taste. Recommended.

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Photo of jjboesen
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On a recent brisk afternoon, I stopped by Bill Madden's Mad Fox Brewing Company. (See Review) At the front door to greet me were several glistening tanks of stainless steel, from which came this splendid and robust English porter.

It pours a dark body crowned with a vanilla froth and emits a subtle nose of delicious chocolate chip. Upon tasting, there is an aggressive assault of dark cocoa powder and toasted malt that is supplemented by a lingering hop finish. According to the beer list, the recipe contains Challengers for bitterness and First Gold for balancing the malt. This is a sublimely balanced beer and an excellent expression of the style, which is my favorite. And Bill's is one of the best I've had in a while. This is good, since a trip to Falls Church, Virginia, is much cheaper than one to London. In any case, all lovers of good English porter owe it to themselves to try this one.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On cask at the brewpub. Reviewed from notes.

Pours a very dark brown with a slight light mocha head followed by some good lacing. Nose brings forward a good amount of roasted malt as well as some dark chocolate, coffee, and hints of molasses. Taste really focuses on the roasted malt and adds in nice flavors to surround it with elegant dark chocolate and coffee as well as hints of smoke. Feel is medium with a good body on cask. Drinks quite well; glad that this is normally on.

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Photo of CrellMoset
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mad Fox Porter, on tap at the Falls Church brewpub, served on 09/05/10.

Appearance: Dark but filtered, with a light charcoal heart and garnet edges, capped by one finger of beige head with average retention. Nice streaks and dollops of lacing rise above a thin collar. And though it's difficult to discern with certainty, it seems like there's plenty of streams of quick carbonation in the interior of this one - essentially, it's right at that threshold between "too dark to see to the center of" and "barely able to detect quick movement in the center of." Nice start.

Aroma: This beer's best aspect. Nice and pungent but not overpowering cocoa and coffee, powdery in places, like Hershey's almost, with hints of iced steely grains, toast, and dark toffee. Robust.

Taste: Iced, sweet coffee, dark toffee, and lightly done toast mingle with dark but sweet fruit notes, and sugary, glassy, roasted malt. Cocoa is present, but slighter than in the nose. A slight twinge of hop bitterness to even things out.

Mouthfeel: More of the same from Mad Fox this evening - that is, their beers are ridiculously smooth, even, and not too thick. This isn't as creamy as a few of the ones I had this evening, but it's nice on the whole.

Drinkability: The last beer I had this evening, and an appropriate closer to a great tasting. This is a well-made porter, and - though I don't see it blowing away everyone - I thought it was very well made. Hit most of the style highlights without having any glaring defects at all. Recommended.

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Photo of jfdean
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Great porter! A buddy of mine and I went over late on a Monday night and after discovering they just finished the beer on cask I opted for some on tap.

The beer came to me with a short head of rich tan foam and a body that was quite entirely black. Bringing the glass to my mouth I was greeted by a decadent roasted aroma with small notes of a malty sweetness and caramel. The following sip did not disappoint! The beer is exactally what a porter should be, dark, roasty, lightly hopped (enough to balance any sweetness) and with a lighter mouth feel and body than a stout.

All in all a very nice beer from a local brewpub!

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Photo of mojo437
2.24/5  rDev -43.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Wow. I have to say this was the most disappointing porter I have ever had. We went around opening night, and this beer tasted extremely watery, even for cask. They really should not cask it, because this beer is begging for carbonation to cover up the lack of flavor. This tasted and looked like a caramel root beer, not a stout porter. If you like your beer even somewhat strong, don't order this. This is for wimps who think they like dark beer - the malts didn't even make up for it. I didn't even finish half of it. Extremely disappointing considering the hype around here for Mad Fox.

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Photo of DonaCake
5/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Loved this beer. Tan creamy long-lasting head. Dark brown in color with some red notes. Medium body. Flavor included roasted notes, some coffee, gaining more of a chocolate-y contribution as it warmed up. Planned on having one and had to try the cask version and loved it as well. On my second visit, had to try it again.

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Photo of dedrinker
3.68/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black with a tan head.

Aromas of bitter chocolate, and roasted malts.

Flavors of the above with a hoppy bitterness side by side with the astringent bitterness of the black malts.

Medium body, smooth soft mouth feel (cask) and some more hop bitterness on the finish than I would prefer. I would rather have a little more roasted malt and dark chocolate flavor.

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a nonic pint glass.

Even better than having a nice local brewpub? That nice local brewpub having a few brews on cask. Get some. This offering pours a barely translucent black-brown, highlighted in ruby, topped by two fingers of tan foam. The nose comprises toasted caramel, chocolate, dark wheat, roasted malts, and a hint of maple syrup. The taste generally follows, with notes of chocolate powder, caramelized sugar, light smoke, and a slight floral bitterness. The body is a heavy medium, with pretty much no carbonation (not surprising) and a disturbingly smooth feel. Overall, a very solid porter...probably gonna have many of these over the next few weeks. I reiterate: get some!

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Big Chimney's Porter from Mad Fox Brewing Company
3.99 out of 5 based on 37 ratings.
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