Belfast Black
Lavery Brewing Company

Belfast BlackBelfast Black
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Lavery Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States
Porter - American
3.84 | pDev: 12.5%
Oct 02, 2019
Feb 13, 2011
Very Good
Belfast BlackBelfast Black
Notes: 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.
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Photo of DrDemento456
4.16/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by DrDemento456 from Pennsylvania

Have a hard time finding Lavery and actually picked this one up at the Vintage Estate in Ohio. Pour is deep dark black with a 1/2 inch of mocha tint. A very smoke forward porter but you do get some roast and chocolate. Taste is very memorable smoke followed by dark chocolate and just a hint of herbal hops. Body is pretty decent at 7% it drinks smooth and pretty slick. Overall a tasty smoked porter and a very good smoke beer which at least for me I don't see very often.

Oct 02, 2019
Photo of ovaltine
4.17/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by ovaltine from Indiana

The pour looks like a stout, the taste is like a (smoky) stout, but this is a porter, and it’s delicious. Lots of dark chocolate flavors that mingle nicely with the char and smoky notes, and then stone fruit flavors to bring this in for a smooth finish.

A great sipper around a campfire on a cold evening (which it is today), I’d have this in my beer fridge from October through March if I had access to it.

Apr 08, 2018
Photo of Harrison8
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
by Harrison8 from Missouri

Pours black with a finger of khaki head. Head retention is fair. Aroma is smoke, toasted malts, herbal hops and a little bit of peat. Flavor profile is toasted malts, with a hint of peat, and herbal hops. Smoke is present throughout. Mouth feel is medium in thickness, with a fizzy textured feeling. Overall, a smoky porter that hits simple notes. It comes off maybe a touch strong with the smoke, but it otherwise well rounded.

Served in a 12oz snifter from a 12oz bottle.

Feb 26, 2018
3.77 by Steve_Studnuts from Pennsylvania on Feb 25, 2018
Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by Lone_Freighter from Vermont

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!

Jul 04, 2017
Photo of Dragginballs76
4.03/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by Dragginballs76 from South Carolina

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.

Mar 26, 2017
Photo of HoppingMadMonk
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
by HoppingMadMonk from New Jersey

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

Mar 18, 2017
3.77 by paresis from Massachusetts on Aug 22, 2016
3.94 by kwjd from Canada (ON) on Jun 15, 2016
3.95 by CaptDavyJones from New York on May 31, 2016
3.96 by dandaugherty1221 from New York on Mar 29, 2016
3.75 by rickklein9 from Pennsylvania on Mar 07, 2016
Photo of fscottkey
4.21/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by fscottkey from New York

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.

Jan 12, 2016
Photo of puck1225
4.23/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by puck1225 from Texas

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.

Jan 02, 2016
4.45 by Ryften from Pennsylvania on Dec 28, 2015
3 by BcOneSeven from Pennsylvania on Dec 27, 2015
Photo of Jeffo
2.54/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5
by Jeffo from Netherlands

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.

Dec 10, 2015
Photo of johnnnniee
3.28/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25
by johnnnniee from New Hampshire

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.

Oct 11, 2015
Photo of Ozzylizard
3.97/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

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.

Feb 03, 2015
Photo of woemad
4.34/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by woemad from Washington

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!

Feb 01, 2015
4 by LooseMoose1978 from North Carolina on Jan 04, 2015
3.25 by timmy2b from New York on Dec 07, 2014
4 by Durge from Connecticut on Nov 28, 2014
4 by GeorgeCarroll from Pennsylvania on Aug 18, 2014
3.5 by dbauer78 from Pennsylvania on Jul 12, 2014
4.75 by mbaer1970 from Pennsylvania on Jul 07, 2014
4.5 by hollywood_15063 from Pennsylvania on Jun 19, 2014
4.25 by outoffocus from Pennsylvania on May 02, 2014
3.75 by Sammy from Canada (ON) on Apr 30, 2014
3.5 by DaPan from Canada (ON) on Apr 29, 2014
4 by MKrauss from Pennsylvania on Apr 23, 2014
4 by BigOldOaf from Massachusetts on Apr 21, 2014
Photo of BMMillsy
4.31/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
by BMMillsy from Florida

Bomber in trade from jbwimer. Pours deep dark brown to black with a one finger dark khaki head.aroma is more roast than smoke, with big chocolate notes, still some definite smoke, and a hint of earthy coffee. Flavor is lots of roasty chocolate and awesome, some long smokey finish going on here, and ends with chocolate and even a hint of vanilla coffee (maybe my taste buds are broken). Really rich flavors here. Dark fruits begin coming out just a tad as I go. Huge mouthfeel--especially for only 7.5%--with medium carbonation. I am amazed at the body on this. This might be one of my new favorite porters. Must get more.

Mar 12, 2014
4.25 by nosavingsaccount from Pennsylvania on Mar 03, 2014
3.5 by HoppyBastard1 from Pennsylvania on Feb 16, 2014
3.75 by Rhettroactive from Pennsylvania on Feb 15, 2014
Photo of Troy_C
4.7/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75
by Troy_C from Pennsylvania

Had this beer on tap. It was very dark with a great thick head. Nice choclate,coffee nose. Full rich slightly sweet choclate/coffee flavor with a hint of licorce. I didnt get much of a smoke flavor though. Rich mouthfeel. This is a great example of a dark beer from a great brewery. One of my favorites from Lavery.

Dec 23, 2013
4.25 by Deerslayer210 from Pennsylvania on Dec 16, 2013
4 by athomasPSU from Massachusetts on Dec 13, 2013
4 by WVbeergeek from West Virginia on Oct 27, 2013
Belfast Black from Lavery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 88 ratings