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Baltic Thunder | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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very good
539 Reviews
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.

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 539 | Ratings: 926
Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Poured bomber into 34oz mug. Dark brown, slightly cloudy, showing lighter brown at the edges. Fizzy medium head from a careful pour that dissipates leaving no lacing so far. Smell is heavy on bitter chocolate, with the other roasted/coffee scents as expected. Taste is like the smell; coffee and chocolate, heavily roasted, a bit acidic/sour. Mouthfeel is a bit fizzy, but very full-bodied. It's a perfect example of the style as described.

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Photo of MrVonzipper
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark walnut color with mahogany at the edges where light shows through. Decent bubbly tan head with pretty good retention and lacing.

Pleasant nose with nice roasted malt, roasted nuts, faint coffee, chocolate and rum raisin notes.

Nice robust flavor similar to the nose but better. Nice balance with dark roasted malt, mild coffee and roasted nut notes. No bitter or chalkiness and not overly sweet.

Med.+ bodied mouthfeel with medium-high carbonation. Just a touch dry without being chalky or too dry.

Overall a very nice Baltic Porter. Probably my second favorite. Nice robust flavor and balance without the negative tendencies that others of the style sometimes have. I highly recommend this one.

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Photo of sethmeister
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber bottle; best by 12/31/08 which leads me to assume the bottle has had some time to age.

An aggressive pour yields a fizzy two finger tan head on a dark reddish brown body. Looks black in the glass but is a clear red held to the light. Head falls to a ring quickly leaving no lace.

Scent is roasty. Chocolate and molasses. Wet earth.

Taste is sweet, roasty, earthy. Chocolate, molasses, dark fruit. A hint of smoke. Chocolate covered cherries, as a previous reviewer notes. Vanilla.

Mouth is weighty, oily and slick.

Drinkability is exc. High abv is very well hidden. My glass emptied disturbingly quickly and I rue not having purchased a second bottle.

This is a delicious porter and I'd love to get my hands on more of it. Typical high quality well crafted Victory beer.

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber, received in a trade with gkatsoris, served in a 18oz pub glass.

A - dark brown with a tan head that fell to a thin layer, leaving some spots of lacing.

S - earthy, roasted malt aroma.

T - sweet toffee, figs and lightly roasted coffee flavors with a touch of bitterness on the finish, nicely done.

M - medium bodied with a clean carbonation feel.

D - goes down very smooth and easy.

Final Note: Thanks George!

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Photo of rajendra82
4.3/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Solid black in color, and opaque, the body had a smallish head, and unlike several other Baltic Porters I've sampled, the head was not brown in color. The smell was roasty and somewhat hoppy. Some chocolate aroma was present, but it was mostly light. The taste was sweet and sour in a classic Porter manner. Chocolate was more prominent in the taste as were notes of lightly roasted coffee. The astringency was mild, but the carbonation was a little prickly. Well done representation of the style IMHO.

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Photo of VMWhelan
4.29/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint.

Pours a dark reddish brown with very little head and average lacing.

Smells of sweet roasted malt, caramel, toffee, chocolate, and coffee.

Taste is sweeter than I expected. Very pleasant, well balanced mild flavors. All of the aformentioned smells are there in the flavor, with sweet chocolate standing out the most. Some slight fruitiness in the middle and a little bit of bittering and alcohol in the finish.

Mouthfeel is slightly carbonated and semi-viscous/chewy. Right on point.

Drinkability is good. Everything about this is good, but its a little filling, though it may just be my stomach at the moment.


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Photo of oelergud
4.29/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown glass bottle 1 pint 6oz. pry off cap. Purple label with red lettering and an anthropomorphic thunderstorm.
Opaque body with just the slightest maple coming through at the edges. Nice looking tan head of tiny to small bubbles. The head falls fairly quickly and leaves a little lace.
That classic delicious baltic porter smell of sweet, slightly burnt, coffee and cocoa beans with a handful of mild hops, earth, molasses and abit of nut.
Strong semi-sweet chocolate malty flavor tempered by almost equally powerful hops. The aftertaste is even stronger in both hops and malts, very pleasant and long lasting.
Full body with some coating and alot of residual sugars.
Very drinkable, mellow and easy going.


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Photo of Mattysox
4.29/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bomber into a standard pint glass; ruby-tinted dark, dark brown color to the body, with a thin, tan head; head disipates fairly fast and leaves little lacing.

The aroma is full of aggressive notes of espresso and dark chocolate, with some sweet fruity, dark berry hints as well. Great smells, all around.

A very smooth, silky mouthfeel gives way to sweet roasty malt flavors on the palate; the coffee and chocolate flavors are still there, but they're much sweeter than on the nose. Everything is very well-balanced by a slight hoppiness on the finish. The 8.5% ABV is really well masked in this beer. An excellently long finish, too.

Overall, a very enjoyable, surprisingly drinkable porter. Looking forward to having it again.

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Photo of nickfl
4.29/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - One finger of light brown head on a black body with ruby highlights. Not much in the way of head retention or lace.

S - Rich, nutty roasted coffee aroma. Notes of raisins, licorice, bananas, and rummy alcohol.

T - Lots of dark chocolate up front, with toffee and rum/ bourbon like alcohol backing it up. Fruity banana and raisin esters follow with nutty caramel and notes of vanilla and tobacco. Lingering roasted malt/ tobacco flavor in the finish, complimented by grain bitterness and warming alcohol.

M - Somewhat thick body with moderate carbonation and some lingering sweetness.

D - Quite drinkable and unusually complex. This is easily the most interesting of the handful of baltic porters I have tried. I think this could benefit from a few months of aging that might mellow out some minor fusel alcohols in the flavor.

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Photo of jojox
4.27/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've been on an RIS kick lately so this was a bit of a change!

a - black, but not 100% opaque. Thin head, fleeting. Some sticks around the edges.

s - Caramel, sweet, apricot (? - some kind of fleshy fruit). Caramel apple. Kinda like a Scottish ale.

t - totally different than RIS I had before. A bit sweeter, toasted caramel type flavors. Almost scottish. Really nice after-finish mouth taste - like 5 minutes after the last sip - beautiful.

m - Pretty carbonated. Rather light in the body.

d - Very high. I really like this beer. Lots of great flavors, not too heavy, nice alcohol buzz.

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Photo of SilentSabre
4.27/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a wonderful example of the style. Poured up extremely dark, but when held to a lamp, lit up a dark burgundy colour. Smell was faint chocolate, coffee, whiskey, freshly sawn oak, and a bit of a damp, black, soil smell. Very nice. Most of these were reflected in the taste, too, with the addition of a smokey flavour that isn't really detectable in the smell. Mouthfeel was better than average, but in a Baltic Porter, and an 8%abv+ Baltic Porter,I would have liked to have seen this substantially thicker. Over all, though, I found this to be a wonderful American example of one of my favourite styles.

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Photo of Mudpuppet
4.26/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to gwong for the chance to try this incredible beer.

A- Poured from a growler into a pint glass. Pours a dark brown or black with a thick 1/2 inch dense tan head.

S- I feel like a broken record in my reviews but this beer had a light nose. Some slight notes of coffee and roast malts.

T- Very strong roasted malts with definite porter characteristics. I have always thought of porters as somewhat chalky and this fits that. I get notes of chocolate and coffee. I also get slight notes of dark currants and raisins.

M- CARBONATION! I am amazed how much carbonation is in this beer. This could be because of the taps at Whole Foods I am not sure.

D- The upside to the carbonation is that it makes this 8.5% alcohol beer extremely drinkable. My first pint went right down. The second began to catch up with me but it is was still very drinkable. If you can get our hands on this beer grab a pint or growler or keg!!

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.26/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22 oz bomber into pint glass

Appearance – Pours a deep brown color with a small tan head. The head fades fast to give almost no lacing.

Smell – There is a big presence of roasted malt with toffee and chocolate infused within. These are mixed with a lighter dark fruit aroma, overall giving the brew a nice sweet brown bread smell.

Taste – A big wallop of sweet toasted malt flavor meets the tongue. This brown bread flavor mixed with a toffee sweetness forms the base for the remaining flavors of the taste to mingle with. Toward the middle, the fruits that were detected in the nose came to be tasted; being of a lighter plum and cherry taste. As the taste went on to the end, the fruit seemed to fade, but a light cocoa flavor took its place. This cocoa, when mixed with the toffee and sweeter malt, created a sweeter roasty flavor. The finish to the taste was also complemented with a smooth increase in alcohol flavor, leaving just a little bit of a pleasant dark rum like flavor on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – A nice and creamy body gives all those sweet, dark and rum like flavors a chance to soak into the tongue. The body when coupled with it’s just below average level of carbonation (accentuating the taste penetration of the flavors) makes for a very nice mouthfeel.

Overall – This is a very nice example of a porter in my opinion. Nice robust sweeter and darker flavors with hints of fruits and booze. It makes a great drinking experience overall and is a beer I would recommend.

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Photo of pwoods
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to NJpadreFan for this great extra.

22oz brown bomber poured into a snifter.

A: Pours deep brown, looks black, and lets just a touch of ruby in on the edges. A decent head forms and falls to a fat skim within a minute or two. Some lacing here and there.

S: Nice, strong porter aroma. Lots of roasty malts with plenty of soft coffee and chocoalte notes. A good dose of alcohol and plump juicy darker fruits.

T/M: Very good. The juicy dark fruits meld great with the chocolate and roasty malts. A nice grapy flavor in there. Alcohol is subtle but lends a slight bourbon edge to things. A bit of hops to freshen things up, balancing the malts a touch. Body is a smooth medium with just enough carbonation to prevent it from getting heavy at all.

D: Very drinkable, even at 8.5%. Man, I love me a good Baltic Porter. Another great brew provided by my good buddy, Alan. Thanks, bro!

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this with my Groupon at my local Beer Nutz. Priced at a typical 5.99 means I got this bad boy for 3 buckz!

A - From the look of the bottle expected dark but poured a see through dark brown with a half inch of head. Looks kinda like a Dopple bock than a Porter.

S - Nothing offensive here. Alcohol smells well masked and really the only thing I am getting is soft coffee, chocolate, and toasted grain. Pleasant.

T - Wow it drinks amazing for almost 9 percent. I would assume if I didn't read it here it would be around the typical 6 or maybe even 7 percent range. Flavors start off with a soft toasted malt, bit of chocolate which amazingly gets better as it warms, mild underlining coffee and finishes rather sweet and with caramel and toffee that never really gets cloying. Mild taste overall but surprisingly complex!

M - Light to medium on my end! Alcohol is only noticeable after consumed.

Overall wow I can't believe how awesome this beer is! Great flavors subtle but many and the overall great price. Worth picking up if you like well masked high ABV porters. May have to go back and grab a second...

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Photo of luvND
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

P: 22oz bottle, cool label
A: dark brown, light comes through the glass, initial frothy head quickly settles to a thin but dense creamy head
S: currants, raisons, toffee, a whif of alcohol
T: Really nice, not much hop to speak of up front, brownies, dates, subtle bitter in the aftertaste
M: Just right, not too thick, not too thin
D: 22 oz is about right for me, a little too heavy for more than one
Notes: A very, very nice porter from one of my favorite breweries. Good dessert beer as the malt sweetness is dominates. Would recommend and will definitely try again.

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Photo of bosco7
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black with an off white head.

Pepper, smoke, chocolate, some coffee, maple,

Sweet start with caramel, chocolate,fig and prune flavors. The middle has more dried fruity flavors with a roasted edge. The finish has some residual sweetness with lots of flowers and pepper. Not a harsh flavor to be detected. Very nice.

So smooth and silky with a little carbonation bite to keep things interesting.

Very interesting brew, I am not sure how it compares to the original due to my being on the other side of the country, but this is very flavorful and smooth. Highly recommended.

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Photo of BARFLYB
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-Tap at Earth Bread & Brewery.

Baltic Thunder is a very dark brown that appears black, but it's not, you can see some redness when held up to light. Either way it looks like a baltic and comes with a pretty foamy dark tan head up top with slight stickage. Smells include deep roasted malts, chocolate, peat, licorice and some olde porter qualities. Very refreshing, I've been staying away from the dark beer lately and this is a nice welcome back. It's not very gooey thick, like alot of baltics out there. The feel is pretty much medium, it's not that huge, carb is no problem here. While the body is a bit thin per style, the taste is not, Chocolate, traces of vanilla, cocco beans, roast, malt, peat, a touch of dark fruit and some licorice. A bit high in alcohol, I could probably drink two pints of this stuff. The lighter body makes for easier drinking here.

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Photo of jpaltan
4.25/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very dark, more purple than black though. head is big and frothy, sticks around for a bit, then dissapears. Nose is fruity, figs and cherries and raisin. very little hop aroma. taste is chocolate, with cherries and plum in the middle. toffee finish. mouthfeel is really nice. thought it was going to be more syrupy, but it is pleasantly creamy with a chewyness. a touch syrupy, but it doesn't detract at all. well carbonated to carry off the booze. booze is pretty well hidden, though it does show itself in the back of the throat as it goes down. all in all, pretty tasty.

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Photo of biegaman
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Despite a wash of cola and glints of russet brown, the beer decidedly settles on wearing black. It's a wonderful looking inky tone with the gloss of new, finely polished marble. Even more colour is revealed to the light. Its walnut stained head is fully capable of covering the top in entirety but seems insistent on residing only around the perimeter.

Victory seems to have captured all the eccentric peculiarities of the Baltic Porter style. Its full bodied aroma is complex with a very rich malty sweetness and notes of bitter smoked chocolate. With further traces of dark caramel, roast toffee, black licorice, nuts, cold coffee and dark currants you can pick your favourite feature and sniff it out all you like.

All these wonderful scents arise from the flavours that lay beneath them. An identical cast of ingredients can be tasted even more vividly than they are smelt. A bunch of thick, syrupy blackstrap molasses, a dash of roast coffee, a touch of black licorice, hazelnut and brasil nut, hints of cocoa coated dark caramels and a trace of dark fruits and currants. Sound good?

Although a few pats on the back are well deserved already by this point, I commend Victory most for hitting that delicate - but necessary - level of roast just right. It's a deep, deep toast rather than a sweltering, full out fry and it adds just a perfect amount of caramelization and nutty character. Oh, and those hops didn't go undetected either - again, nice touch!

One last kudos to Victory for putting this into bombers, a decision which I could not be happier about. With plenty of flavour (but still no alcohol) coming with warming, this sized serving is perfect to cuddle up to on a cold, rainy night. I'm a big fan of Baltic Porters and this is not only true to style, but also one of the best examples I've come across.

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Photo of alleykatking
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 22oz bottle.

A- Pours a very dark brown color. Light red hues when held to the light. One finger light tan head. Ringing lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Very light darker fruits in the aroma. Roasted malts with light toffee notes. Some chocolate malts in this make the beer overall a pleasant surprise in the nose.

T- Nice roasted malts upfront with light toffee flavors. Biscuty flavors in the middle with some darker fruits that are choice notes in here. Light bittering hops in the backend with roasted malts at the last second.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Roasted malts left on the palate of this with a light hopping in the aftertaste. Flavors were clean and mixed well together.

D- A very very drinkable porter. This is a smooth drinker and the ABV is the only limiting thing on this. I would have no problem drinking a couple of bottles of this.

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Photo of MadCat
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have to start off saying, this bottle is a month past the "expiration date" (1/27/11) but I figured thats more of a CYA/Bottle Date kind of thing. BA says Baltic Porters can be cellared, and a Victory rep said the age should have a positive effect on it. I would like to try a younger version to compare.

Appearance: Dark reddish brown, very clear. Minimal head, no lacing.

Smell: Light roasted coffee, hints of roasted malty goodness, hints of smokiness.

Taste: Light roasted coffee, roasted malt, some malty sweetness. Some smokiness, some toffee notes, some dark chocolate. Some bitterness, but only really enough to keep it balanced.

Mouthfeel: Very light carbonation, feels appropriate. Somewhat thick.

Drinkability: Goes down easy, hides the abv. Enjoyable.

Overall: Quite good, very complex. It seems like all of the flavors have married well. I wish there were more Baltic Porters available so I can compare and see how this falls within the style.

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Photo of bonkers
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I poured a bomber into a 23 ounce glass. It is a pretty impressive pour, jet black with a thin white head. I enjoyed the smell, rather boozy. There are hints of chocolate, but alchohol wins the day. This is a true malt bomb. There are hints of chocolate, coffee and alcohol in this brew. The finish is crisp and smooth. This beer is a medium bodied sipper and a damn enjoyable one.

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Photo of kevinglin
4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle - very dark with garnet/red highlights, nearly opaque, the highlights make for an appealing beer. Small tan head that dissipated fairly quickly. A malty, roasty, toffee aroma with some chocolate notes.

Flavor follows the aroma - roasty, malty, with hints of chocolate, low hop bitterness. No harsh astringency, very smooth.

Creamy, full bodied, almost chewy mouthfeel. Very slight hint of the alcohol, but not at all hot.

A very enjoyable beer. Rich, and full-flavored, but smooth. Could pair nicely with some chocolately desserts. Definitely recommend.

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Photo of deltatauhobbit
4.21/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Thanks to EGledhill for the chance to try this.

Pours a dark brown with ruby hues when held up to the light, good size head.

Smell is predominately roasted malt, stronger than normal hop aroma for a porter, something odd that I can't place.

Taste is very smooth and creamy, chocolate caramel and malt presence hits first, bit of an alcohol taste in the back but is mostly masked by the creaminess, some nuttiness as well as a slight bitterness.

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Baltic Thunder from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
3.87 out of 5 based on 926 ratings.
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