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Belfast Black | Lavery Brewing Company

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Belfast BlackBelfast Black
Very Good
85 Ratings
Belfast BlackBelfast Black

Brewed by:
Lavery Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
This is the beer that started the brewery. Named after the ancient homeland of the Lavery's. It is rich, dark and smokey. Not for the faint of heart but that's how we intended it. It has a taste of bacon, which is one of the most beautiful images I can image; a bacon beer (No actual bacon is in this beer). A solid earthy hop bitterness with a little astringency from the dark malts. This beer has no better pair than excellent Vermont Cheddar cheese.

Added by beergod1 on 02-13-2011

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 85 |  Reviews: 28
Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a mug, the appearance was a light brown color with a nice sustaining finger’s worth of light tan foamy head that fell off at a moderate pace. Light lace. The aroma had some hazelnut roast, light ash/smoke, dark malts, subtle milk chocolate, sly dark chocolate with some earthy/grassy hop bitterness at the end. The flavor was smoky with the hazelnut roast and sweetness fairly bold and up front. Mild smoky aftertaste and finish. The feel was about medium bodied with a steady carbonation that was felt but fine. ABV felt fine. Pretty smooth/pillowy along my tongue. Overall, super nicely done smoked beer that I would love to have again, that was a real treat. Thanks Mom and Dad!

 695 characters

Photo of Dragginballs76
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a fairly thick black color with a nice tan head, spotty lacing around the glass.

Aroma - Lots of bitter chocolate and roasted malts. There just seems to be a hint of smoke if any I am picking up in the aroma along with a touch of vanilla.

Taste - The taste is similar to the aroma bitter chocolate and roasted malts lead with the smoke being a little more pronounced in the taste. I love how balanced the smoke is with the other flavors. There also seems to be a slight coffee taste I am picking up.

Feel - Full bodied very creamy and smooth pretty dry finish

Overall - I find smoked beers to be hit or miss and this one is a hit. Great flavors very balanced nice mouthfeel.

 698 characters

Photo of HoppingMadMonk
3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Deep black color with an aroma of malt and coffee. It must be the smoke that kept making me take another sniff trying to identify the unusuall smell. A very good porter that had all the flavor that I would want in a porter but again it was the smoke that made me keep questioning exactly what it was I was drinking. It did go down very,very easily which is why 7abv was perfect and well hidden and not overwhelming. The smoke made it unusuall and a different porter experience. Would try it again

 498 characters

Photo of paresis
3.77/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of kwjd
3.94/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of CaptDavyJones
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of dandaugherty1221
3.96/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of rickklein9
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of fscottkey
4.21/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: [4.50] Looks like a stout in the glass. Full finger of dense khaki head atop a dark brown brew. Leaves really nice sheets of lacing on the glass - coating it completely with each sip. The beer lets through light when held up to backlighting. The bottle lists the ABV (7.5%). I can't find any date info.

S: [4.00] Peat, smoke, smoked meat, hints of roasted malts.

T: [4.25] Follows the nose with smoke (but not overpowering or synthetic tasting). Sweet malts in the middle that come across as toasted marshmallows with the smoke flavor. Some underlying coffee and cocoa flavors too.

M: [4.25] Smooth and creamy. Coats the tongue and has a lingering smokiness.

O: [4.25] This beer was a really pleasant surprise. The nose and the taste are a nice balance of smoke and sweet malt flavors. The body has some weigh to it which makes drinking it even better. Visually the beer maintains a thin creamy head the entire time. It also coats the glass with each sip. I would drink this again and buy it to share with friends.

 1,034 characters

Photo of puck1225
4.23/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

VEry dark brown pour into a pint glass. Nice light brown creamy head and decent lacing. Nice comforting smoked smell. The taste is rich chocolate and smoke, a bit of strong coffee. Very tasty, would buy again.

 209 characters

Photo of Ryften
4.45/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of BcOneSeven
3/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of Jeffo
2.54/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Mom and dad brought this one back from Erie last summer. Thanks guys!

From a bomber into a snifter

APPEARANCE: A clear, light brown pour yields a 2+ finger, looser and foamy looking, fizzy light tan head with lousy retention. Quite foamy for sure. Bistre brown body, clear, with loads of carbonation. Piles of carbonation all over the place on this one. What's with these guys and their carbonation? Head fades to a full foamy cap and clings to the sides of the glass. A splotchy wisp remains until the end leaving lots of foamy lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Smoked malts, toffee, roasted aromas, cacao and some decent leather on the nose. Bold enough. A touch metallic perhaps, but not bad.

TASTE: Smoked malts, leather, a some definite metallic notes. Medium finish with lingering flavors of leather, cacao, toffee, roasted malts, smoked malts, with an unfortunate metallic undertone to the whole thing. Kind of gets in the way.

PALATE: Thinner body and piles of carbonation. Airy and foamy on the palate, goes down fine and finishes rather dry for the style.

OVERALL: Like their Devil Bird, this one is just too over carbonated to really be enjoyable. The metallic notes that in this one also get in the way. Perhaps this one is suffering from some oxidization already, and that would be a real shame. Not good and not worth trying again. Pass.

 1,358 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
3.28/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Bottle shared by someone Friday night, thanks for the opportunity!
Deep brown color, tan head. Rich caramel and hints of brown sugar along with a solid shot of smoked pork shoulder. A bit smokey for my tastes.

 209 characters

Photo of Ozzylizard
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Undated bottle at 45 degrees into snifter
Aroma of bitter chocolate, dates, and a hint of smoke
Head small (1 cm, aggressive pour), light brown, fizzy, rapidly diminishing to a partial 1 mm ring
Lacing none
Body dark brown/black, opaque
Flavor of dates, dark chocolate malt, aftertaste of smoke; no hops, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate medium to full, creamy, soft carbonation

Appearance 3.5, Aroma 4, Flavor 4, Palate 4, Overall 4. Loses some for poor head and no lacing. Overall, one of the better brews from Lavery.

 521 characters

Photo of woemad
4.34/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bomber received from @ozzylizard as part of the NBS BIF #1. No obvious freshness date. I had not heard of this brewery before I received it, which is pretty much the whole point of that BIF.

Poured into an Iron Goat snifter, this was a super dark brown, almost black, that yielded absolutely nothing when held up to direct light. There was a big, creamy tan head that took it’s time settling, leaving streaky and spotty lace all over the sides of the glass.

Dark, bitter malt aroma is the primary takeaway from the nose. At first the smoky aroma I was expecting just wasn’t there, but as it warmed up it came out to play a little. Still, this is not on the order of Stone’s or Alaskan’s smoked porters, which I like but a lot of people find overpowering. It’s much more subtle.

Dark malts are the most obvious flavor component, giving off tastes of bitter, dark chocolate and black coffee. There's also some sweetness, but it's perfectly balanced so it's not cloying at all. The smokiness is really more of a cloak than anything else. There’s a little hoppy zap at the finish, but it’s not what I’d call a hoppy brew. In my opinion, for a porter, that’s just as it should be.

The body is fairly full, with a velvety smooth mouthfeel.

Really dig this. If I lived in or near Erie, I’d go home with a growler of this regularly (PA laws permitting). HUGE shout out to @Ozzylizard for hooking me up with a beer I might never have had a shot at otherwise!

 1,480 characters

Photo of LooseMoose1978
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of timmy2b
3.25/5  rDev -14.7%

Photo of Durge
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of GeorgeCarroll
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of dbauer78
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of mbaer1970
4.75/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of hollywood_15063
4.5/5  rDev +18.1%

Photo of outoffocus
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of Sammy
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

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Belfast Black from Lavery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.81 out of 5 with 85 ratings
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