Baltic Thunder | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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Baltic ThunderBaltic Thunder
Very Good
927 Ratings
Baltic ThunderBaltic Thunder

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Baltic Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by akorsak on 01-05-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 927 |  Reviews: 540
Reviews by sulldaddy:
Photo of sulldaddy
4.85/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I am sampling a cellar temp bottle poured into a snifter. Ive been cellaring this beer for about 12 months and Im excited to drink it tonite.
The beer pours a deep cola brown with no light passing through the glass when held up against the lamp.
Very loud fizziness eminates from the glass throughout the pour. A tan fizzy head of 2 cm foams up and fades to a sturdy surface layer quickly, leaving a few wispy islands.
Aroma is deep chocolate malt with some rich molassess and dark fruit. Not any hop presence to speak of and only limited hints of the forthcoming booze.
First sip revels a thick slightly syrupy beer but the smoth texture and minimal gentle carbonation keep this beer a very drinkable one.
Flavor is deep dark fruit, maybe plums, heavy with molassess and brown sugar and a bit of roasted malt and baker's chocolate.
Again there is no hop profile and the booze is amazingly well hidden.

I really enjoy this well crafted big beer. Quite complex and dangerously drinkable! WIsh I had another bottle in the cellar.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.98/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

There seems to be quite an influx of Baltic Porter style beers showing up on the beer shelves lately...not that Iam complaining.This poured into a .5 liter stein a deep dark brown with creamy-like beige head atop that settled slowly leaving a minimal amount of lace behind,heavy on the espresso roast coffee in the nose with lighter notes of caramel and molasses.Nice full mouthfeel very lush,flavors are dominated by the dark roast coffee with the sweetness held in check well just a little caramel that goes well with the heavy handed roastiness,a mild dark fruit note comes thru but its rather mild.A solid Baltic Porter quite roasty and sustaining with a great mouthfeel.

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Photo of RoyalT
3.81/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - This fella came out a nice, clear brown in color, like almost a perfect color of brown, with a dirty white head that lacked the persistence one expects from the style.

Smell - The rich, complex sugars here steal the show. In particular the raw sugar aroma was indistinguishable from the real thing. There were some nice brown sugar notes as well that were a combination of the sweetness of the sugar and the light toasty aroma of the malts. There's also just the mildest hint of espresso bean.

Taste - The sugars mostly came out from the nose but were not quite as big. The malt based moved forward a bit giving this BP a pleasant balance.

Mouthfeel - This is where the beer fell short IMO. The body was very thin, not close to medium, and there was a complete lack of alcohol on the tongue. I enjoyed the playful bitterness at the finish here but at 8.5 ABV I expect a little kick as called for in the style.

Drinkability - BPs should demand a slow draw but this guy begged to be chugged. I don't know if that's good or bad. It was a nice, easy-drinking beer but lacked the promised heft of its name.

PS: I don't think I've ever reviewed a beer without repeating at least one of the scores twice, 3.0, 4.5, 4.0, 2.5, & 3.5, but this one was all over the board for me.

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Photo of Supersweetshirts
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Victory has come a long way with their beers. When I opened the bottle there was a definite, delicious, smokey aroma. When pouring into a glass, it's color was a deep, dark, brown with a nice darker thick head that quickly dwindled to nothing after a few minutes. I tasted hints of fruits, but was mostly a roasted malty flavor. The alcohol percentage of this beer is 8.5% which was surprising because it didn't at all have a taste that would have indicated this. It was a very smooth and filling beer. Overall, while this wouldn't be something I would seek out, it was a beer that I did enjoy but would not be at the top of my list of Porters.

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Photo of boston2bburg
3.55/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark mahogany, maybe 90% opaque, with two fingers of tan head that dissapates to basically nothing, leaving not much lacing.

Smell is heavy on the toasted malts, bread, more fruitiness coming out as it warms, particularly strawberries and raspberries. Slightly yeasty.

The flavor is a bit more interesting - toasty, with notes of chocolate and prunes.

Mouthfeel is thick and syrupy up front, hops are there to balance the finish but not much more. Well-carbonated. Easily the strong point of this ale.

The alcohol is very hard to notice from the taste, but begins to warm towards the last third of the bomber. I'm not very familiar with the style, and I'm a bit confused by the label, which refers to it as a dark lager. I thought all porters were ales? Anyways, I may not seek it out again, but if a couple more were in front of me I could definitely make a session of it.

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

From BeerAdvocate Magazine Volume II, Issue IV:

Baltic Thunder is the resurrection of Perkeno's Hammer from the late Heavyweight Brewing Co.--man, we miss that brewery.

Dark brown, nearly black color. Smallish head, though the tan lacing does have some decent retention to it. Ripe blackberries, licorice root, soft charcoal and a very faint smokiness from the roasted grain make up the aroma. Just as smooth as it is creamy and it's pretty damn smooth, with a full malt jacket. A malt bomb is not saying enough; thick layers of sweetness and roasted character unfold. Suggestions of chocolate mousse, black cherry juice, toasted bread, hint of charcoal and mild roast coffee show off the complexities. Alcohol is a little hidden, with a small warming quality in the end. Hop bitterness and flavor both come in modestly and really only help to keep some balance. Finishes a little chocolaty, slight mocha, sweet.

Delicious. Very rich with pleasing malt complexities. Excellent for pairing with a dessert or even as a night cap.

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Photo of blitz134
3.73/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've always had mixed feelings about Baltic Porter...sometimes I think they are good but sometimes not. I remember really liking Heavyweight's Perkuno's Hammer and I know this beer has some ties with it, although I'm not sure how the story worked out in the end.

Pitch black looking, but red shines through when held to the light. Half inch of slightly fizzy tan head on the pour. Reduced to a thin layer with some spotty lacing.

I find the aroma to be a bit light. Slight chocolaty and roasted hints, a touch of that Baltic porter sweetness.

Taste is much the same except a little more pronounced roasted edge at the end. Touch of sweetness and some hints at dark fruits, but not what I would call a caramel sweetness. Very clean in the yeast department.

Medium bodied brew. Decent carbonation level. Easy to drink. Nicely lingering flavor that is just a subtle hint of roastiness. A pretty good beer, I like this one more than most other Baltics.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.73/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was a dark brown/black color with a very small tan head. It had the faintest aroma of sweet chocolate. Fortunately, it tasted far better than its aroma suggested. Mostly cocoa, a little bit of espresso, lingered well on the palate. The more I drank it, the better I liked it.

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Photo of RickII
4.97/5  rDev +28.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Very piny. Similar to enjoy by but with backbone. An excellent beer. If you're a hophead don't pass this up!

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Photo of Doomcifer
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of merlin48
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber pours a clear chestnut body that sits opaque in the tasting glass. Small tan head has good patchy lacing.

Aroma opens with fruity figs and dates. Black pepper and milk chocolate notes quickly follow.

Mouthfeel has a medium body with a soft, low medium carbonation.

Taste is pleasantly complex, as per style. Sweet fruity prunes and figs, milk chocolate, toffee and caramel, a touch of coffee(thankfully just a hint) and just a whisper of warming alcohol.

One of the better American examples of a Baltic porter, certainly, but doesn't equal its mythical ancestor, Pekuno's Hammer.

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Photo of Billolick
3.98/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bomber, "enjoy by Jan. 2 '09" (almost 2 years away) dating on the label. Pours very dark, near black, under a dark tan head, showing retentive powers and leaving thick ringed sheeting and respectable lacing. Nose of sweet malt, powdered sugar and a hint of cocoa. Smooth and tasty on the tongue, with notes of dark grains, mild coffee, chocolate and hints of vanilla. Very easy drinking and enjoyable porter, the label calls it a lager (?) hmmm. Well worth getting a few bottles and enjoying.

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Photo of Lgrec8
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of reitzbrewing
4.75/5  rDev +22.7%

Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to 5000 for sending me this bottle.

The beer pours a dark brown color with a tan head. The aroma if full of coffee and roasted malt with some dark fruit mixed in. There is also a little bit of alcohol in the aroma. The flavor is more of the same. I get a lot of coffee and chocolate up front, with some roasted malt and dark cherries and prunes in the background. There is also some nice mint characteristics in the flavor which I really enjoy. The alcohol is present but doesn't hinder the drinkability. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. A very nice Baltic porter.

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Photo of SkinnyElvis
4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured right from my cellar at a temp of 50 degrees. Pours with a healthy head & jet black. Smells mostly of roasted malt. It has a lovely roasted malty flavor but it has a sweetness to it. This is a very smooth & drinkable brew which is dangerous with its ABV. I am thrilled that this beer has resurfaced & it will be a part of my drinking rotation from here on out.


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Photo of bsp77
3.58/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Serving glass: Poured from bomber into Snifter.

Appearance: Rich, dark mahogany with thick initial light brown head but just leaves a few whispies.

Smell: Chocolate, caramel, cherry and noble hops. A little restrained.

Taste: Very malty and sweet, with chocolate, toffee, cherry and just a touch of coffee and spicy noble hops, especially toward the finish.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, fairly smooth lager body.

Drinkability: Nice sipper but comes across as more of a sweet Doppelbock, as the roasted qualities are a little too restrained. Not Victory's shining moment, but still quite tasty and good to try.

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Photo of jcdiflorio
3.26/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz brown bomber poured into a tulip glass not the recomended glass,just wanted to use this glass. Poured an opaque mahogany color,reminded me of a wine color. A short lived creamy light tan head that left an everlasting collar with some tiny bubbles surging from the sides of the glass only noticable at the upper half of the glass and not even a spot of lacing.

Dark fruity nose with roastyness some subtle burnt notes.Prunes and raisins dominate the fruitiness,dark chocolate,slightly vinious with overrippen fruit sweetness. A good pleasing aroma a bit on the fainter side.

A creamy roastyness up frount with a layered dark fruitness followed by baker chocolate has a nice sharp clean dry bitterness,tangy with a chocolaty fade. A lighter body than expected nice creamyness.The alcohol was well hidden. Still not a beer i could drink a lot of. A nice Baltic would prefer Duck Rabbit if i had to pick from the two. I bought a case when it first came out, it had mellowed a bit yet still close to when it was fresh.Not a beer that's worthy of aging to me, said drink by Dec08 on side of case.

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Photo of wattoclone
3.61/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, deep brown-black with small head having moderate lifetime.

Intense strong flavors of sweet roasted malt, dark fruits, a hint of smoke and intense long lasting dark chocolate finish. Alcohol is strong as is typical for the US version of this style. Actually, I prefer the lighter, lower alcohol Lithuanian version of Baltic Porter exemplified by Utenos Porter. Why is it US brewers generally have to brew over-the-top high alcohol beers.

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Photo of kingcrowing
3.66/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz Bomber poured in a pint glass.

Nice big 2 finger head thats very dark and creamy. Very dark and roasty color with some hughes of red. Nice and smooth body, suprisingly light for a porter. Light amount of sweetness and carbonation. It's got a great amount of alcohol as well at 8.5 abv, it's warming but not overpowering. Overall it's a very solid porter and really close to the style with the exception of the high alcohol, but it's so well done it's very welcomed.

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Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I tried this both fresh and after 3 years in the cellar. It pours bright black under a very thin tan film. Caramel and light chocolate aromas become sherry like after three years. The fresh palate is all rich malt with dark sugars and caramel and light chocolate notes. After 3 years these become more butterscotch and sherry like. It has a medium full body and medium high carbonation. Aging hasn’t hurt but it hasn’t added much either.

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Photo of bpfrush
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of Vintarabo
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of RyanPS
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Photo of far333
3.7/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Mahogany colored with medium clarity and copper highlights where the light comes through. Low head of oatmeal colored foam that doesn't rise up too much and settles out quickly, but leaves a fine cap.

Aroma of cocoa and raisins. Flavors of cocoa and roasted malt, notes of caramel and marshmallow. Moderate sweetness, offset with a balancing moderate bitterness, a bit roasty. Coffee emerges in the finish.

Thin mouthfeel, lacking body. Above average drinkability, well balanced but could use more character.

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Baltic Thunder from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Beer rating: 3.87 out of 5 with 927 ratings