Baltic Thunder | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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Baltic ThunderBaltic Thunder
Very Good
926 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.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 926 |  Reviews: 539
Photo of jlpayne
3.76/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Sprightly. No head. Semi-opaque. Brown with deep red hues.

S - Limited nose. Muted scent of malts. Some sweetness.

T - Much more going on in the taste. Earthy. Malts and hops very well balanced. Alcohol is barely present.

M - Light carbonation dances on the palate. Wispy. Very enjoyable.

D - Extremely drinkable. The 8.5% abv is barely noticeable.

Another solid beer from Victory. Recommendable.

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Photo of BeerLover99
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - dark brownish body, big full tan/creme head.

S - nutty, toffee, cocoa, roasted malt.

T - dark chocolate, coffee, roasted nuts.

M - medium/heavy body. solid carbonation balance. goes down very smooth and the alcohol will sneak up on you.

D - This is one of my favorite styles of beer and this didn't let me down. Most assuredly a sipper, delighted in sharing thoughts will I sampled this selection with my best friend. Check this beer out.

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Photo of SolomonGrundy
3.72/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

gotta go quick - gotta fix dinner for the fam!! Pours a deep dark mahogany with wonderful blood red highlights. Crowned by two-fingers of smooth and creamy head, this beer looks fantastic!! Wonderfully carbonated by champagne-like bubbles, the head softens into a marshmallowy half-finger and leaves wonderful lacing. Aromas are somewhat faint and show some fig, fruitcake, a tiny bit of vanilla or caramel, and fresh bread. Wonderful, creamy smooth flavors abound. Huge malt component hits right upfront, then slowly diminishes into a nice round roasty flavor. Amazing how they melded those two malt components. I love it. Finish is long and well-balancing, where the hops really come in and mop up without overdoing it. Middle of the pricv range but this beautiful beer is worth tracking down. Not as malt forward as many others in the style I've had, but well-balanced instead.

What I like most: The beautiful pour and wonderful malt character in the flavor.

What I like least: The somewaht faint aroma profile.

Verdict: Delicious and worth tracking down.

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Photo of peacebone116
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bomber into an over-sized wine glass.

A: Dark black/brown with a reddish hue in certain light. Quickly fading muddy head.

N: Coffee and smoky hickory.

T/M: Coffee and a hint of chocolate. very smoky with the note of toffee sweetness. Texture is light (a little more than expected for this genre, but it does classify it as a "dark lager" on the back-of-the-bottle blurb); very drinkable.

I really enjoy Victory's take on traditional beers. They are very innovative and put a great spin on traditional German/Belgian style brewing. While I found this beer to be no different (the smoke nuances are very interesting), I did not pick up on the fruit notes I typically expect to find in a porter, which was a bit of a let-down. Good beer nonetheless.

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Photo of SkunkWorks
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle poured into an Irish pint glass.

Look: hard to tell because of the lighting in the bar, but its dark brown with red highlights at the bottom and the sides. Thin tan head that doesn't stick around for very long but leaves an okay amount of lacing.

Smell: roasted malt, coffee, and dark caramel. A little sweet. Its simple but enjoyable.

Taste: follows the nose nicely. Coffee, some molasses, a hint of dark fruit, some roasted malt and dark caramel. Again, like the smell, fairly simple but enjoyable. The 8.5% ABV is hidden extremely well by the taste.

Feel: probably the biggest weakness of the beer in terms of the style, but its fairly thin for a Baltic Porter and is a bit on the thinner side of medium bodied. Carbonation is moderate. No alcohol warmth.

Drink: considering its 8.5% porter, this is exceptionally drinkable. Since its fairly light on the palate in terms of complexity and body, you could drink a lot of these.

Overall, decent but not exceptional. I think I might've enjoyed it more but in my mind I was comparing it to Storm King and that's probably an unfair comparison. Still, it was a good porter and hit the spot nicely. I would recommend giving it a try. Cheers!

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a mug glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a short off-white head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick on the glass.

S: The aroma contains coffee, honey, dark fruit, roasted malts and a faint touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out sweet with flavors of honey, dark fruit and milk chocolate followed by a hearty roasted malt character. There are background flavors of black coffee and some smokiness. The hops presence is mild but complementary and brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, although there are better beers in the style, this is still a solid porter worth drinking for a long time.

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Photo of wedge
4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 maybe...

Dark, nearly black color with a thin beige head that quickly slips down to a creamy ring. Aromas of dark malt, dried fruit sweetness, toffee, slight oxidation, berries, and bread. Rich, roasted, chocolaty flavor...dried fruit esters, smooth coffee and a bit of tar-like smoke. Medium bodied, smooth, and quite drinkable.

Very rich and chocolaty. It's no Perkuno's Hammer, but then again, that was one of the best beers I've ever had. All in all, very tasty! Totally worth taking beyond the "best by" date...

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Photo of wvsabbath
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving Type - 22oz bottle

Appearance - Dark tanish black, a slight red tint to it, 1/2 creamy head

Smell - Malts, chocolate, spices, yeast, classic victory smell

Taste - Nice and roasty with a chocolate background to it. Alcohol is masked well. I can taste the victory hops in it also. The spices are tangy mixed with cocoa and carmael . Nice and strong but has some sweetness to it

Mouthfeel - A real treat. Tounge gets tingly with the hop bitterness and alcohol warmth, but palette and throat gets malts, spices and chocolate. Nice mixture for sure

Drinkabilty - Well, its strong enough that this 22oz is enough for sure. This is borderline about as weak as you get for a baltic porter for its bitterness and kick. Great winter beer, will drink again

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

Bomber with no freshness dating, but does reveal itself to be a lager, served in a DFH glass.

A - Gorgeous dark ruby body. Great clarity shows some of the tan head forming carbonation. Small tan head fades quickly, little lacing.

S - Dark toffee, caramel, with some fruit esters from the yeast. Clean fermentation otherwise, and the aroma overall is pleasant.

T - Bittersweet chocolate, dark caramel, black fig, black strap molasses. Roasty and malty with just enough bitterness to keep it from being too sweet. The roast character is prominent without tasting burnt or ashy in anyway, blending into the dark chocolate really well.

M - Medium bodied to the point of being dryer than most Baltic Porters. Good carbonation with a very clean finish that isn't usually here either... I like it.

D - For a Baltic Porter, high. The clean finish coupled with the absolute masking of the ABV makes it above average for the style.

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

Reviewed on 6 November 2010, on tap at Tap at Mallet in Rochester, NY for the "Victory Total Tap Takeover."

Served in non-standard glass, no head, runny lacing, Color was like that of Coca-Cola (the bar was dark) with a touch of maroon. The aroma consisted of slight bitter hops, coffee, and over-roasted malts. Taste is overwhelmingly coffee, some toffee (like that of a Heath bar but not sweet), a touch of caramel, and slightly over-roasted malts. Only a little bit of alcohol hotness was present. This was a medium-bodied beer with roasted coffee flavor that hangs out in your mouth. Not sure that I can drink more than one of these beers per season.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
3.61/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a New Belgium globe.

A: Clear and a deep, dark red/purple color. One inch off-white head fizzles out quickly and leaves only a light lacing.

S: Deep plum-like darkfruit with sweeter notes of black cherries. Hint of tartness. Faint dark chocolate underneath it all. A very understated nose.

T: Big taste of slightly tart plums and cherries grabs the palate at the outset. Complexity builds as flavors of molasses, raisins, and chocolate covered cherries make themselves known. The finish seems to last an eternity and consists of black cherries and a hefty dose of dry chocolate/toffee roasted malt flavor that takes a while to kick in.

M: Moderately thick, smooth, and creamy. Moderate carbonation rounds it out.

D: Good.

Notes: Pretty good. The nose does not do this beer justice. Not as bold as some of the better Baltic Porters out there. Probably more akin to how I imagine some of the older recipes to have tasted. Darkfruit tastes are prominent. Very malty, and certainly complex in that right, but it all seems to live in the shadow of the darkfruit esters.

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Photo of pburland23
3.48/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a dimpled mug.

This was my first foray into the Baltic Porter style. Having always enjoyed Victory in the past, I figured they were a safe choice.

Poured a pleasing deep, dark brown with an almost non-existent head. Not totally opaque. Smelled of chocolate and coffee. The taste was not as bold as I was anticipating. The mouthfeel seemed thin. It didn't feel like a stout in my opinion. As for drinkability, it was a little rough around the edges while cold. The beer mellowed as it warmed in the mug, but it was not the most pleasing introduction to the style. Would I drink it again? Maybe, but I wouldn't go out of my way for it.

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Photo of EricCioe
3.91/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a dark brown with a one finger espresso crema head that fades into a nice foam. On the nose it's a pretty distant but pleasant group of notes, mostly roasted malt and burnt coffee, some dark, wet grass. On the tongue those flavors come out much more distinctly, a big roasted presence up front with some combined hop and roast bitterness at the back. In the mouth it's a good deal thinner than I associate with the style, but pleasantly fuzzy on the way down. It's plenty drinkable and the price isn't outrageous. An up and down beer but pretty good.

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

The aroma, while not prominent, has dark roasted malts, chocolate and coffee. Nothing too over the top. I expected more from something this high in ABV.

The tastes are mainly of strong roasted bittersweet chocolate malt backbone with a coffee note equally as strong as the chocolate. Some notes of dark fruits; like figs, prunes and raisins. Alcohol is non-existent. Bitterness is very mild and flavors become much more even and integrated with warming. Mouthfeel is on the light side of medium, a little thin but nicely creamy and slightly chalky. Carbonation is low.

This is a very good beer and could really grow on me. A bit thin for the style, but I enjoy things sometimes differing from the norm. I wonder if this was fermented with lager yeast and not ale yeast in the same way I brewer my Baltic porter because it has the same muted malt taste.

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Photo of jsprain1
3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- Pours a dark brown, almost black. The head is too thin and poorly retained to be considered "good."
S- Definite malt presence. Chocolate and coffee. Some toffee and caramel aromas. Understated though.
T- Chocolate, some coffee, some dark fruit. Relatively understated overall though. Good flavors, just weak.
M- Light-medium. Needs more substance and carbonation.
D- This was a bit of a disappoint for me. It wasn't bad, but it just didn't excite me. Maybe I just have such high expectations out of victory and baltic porters, but it didn't really merit a second purchase. It did hide the abv well though.

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Photo of thecarster1
3.48/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

a- bomber poured into a snifter, one plus fingers of head that fade slowly leaving uneven lacing and a ring around the glass, very dark brown black color.

s- roasty, sweet malts, some coffee, a bit toasted.

t- nice, roast, coffee bitterness, toast, some nuttyness, touch of alcohol in the backend, sweet touch to it.

m- little thin, was expecting a bit more to the body.

d- okay, decent beer, i wouldn't seek this one out probably, but i'm glad that i had the chance to try this.

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3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into snifter: from notes: Thanks to Zerosignal for this one!

A: Pours a deep and transparent brown body, with a slight reddish hue. The head is a light tan and pours a one finger retention. The head retreats to a thin layer that is left around the glasses rim. There is not much lacing that is left and by the end of the glass, there is none.

S: A note of roasted malts, one that displays toffee. The sweetness is a medium intensity. This is a very clean and crisp aroma, with a rich blend of malts in a nice profiled order.

T/M: The front is a sweet tingling sensation. The mouthfeel is a smooth, almost watery feeling. A bit more thickness on the mouthfeel would make it more enjoyable. The sweetness of the malts promotes a nice lingering finish. As the brew warms there is an increase in overall flavor and prolonged lingering tastes. The roasted malts play a more proactive role as it is warmed.

D: A good overall brew, the good flavors make this an easily drank 22oz bottle. It goes down very smooth and the ABV is hidden very well and its presence is barely shown.

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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 WilliamLee
3.96/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color was dark black. There wasn't much of a head as hard as I tried to make one.

The aroma was from average to poor IMHO, but I did detect toasted malt and chocolate.

The taste was very good dominated by dark roasted malt that wasn't bitter or burnt. Chocolate adds to the flavor and it also has a slightly smoky taste with a note of sweetness and vanilla. It reminds me a wood aged beer even though it's not. However, it doesn't taste like toffee to me which even the brewer's web site mentions in the description.

Overall it is very smooth and easy to drink with nothing unpleasant and a lot to like.

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Photo of SuperNova777
3.62/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Notes from 08/27/10

A:Pours into a snifter glass with a very dark appearance with some ruby highlights when
held to the light. Not much of a head or lacing with this one.

S:A lot of different action going on here including some molasses, vanilla, sweet malts,
slight chocolate, and coffee as well

T:Not as intense as the nose would lead you on to believe, still o.k. tasting thou.
Slight vanilla and coffee up front followed by the malt and chocolate on the end

M:A little thinner body than expected for the style with a small amount of carbonation
that I can tell.

D:Not bad especially at $3.50 for a bomber and the easy drinkability for the ABV. Taste
decent but would prefer a little thicker body for the style and some more intensity on
the flavor, but for the price I wouldn't argue with having one of these if I was low on
cash and wanted something decent to drink

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Photo of takeabrewski
3.74/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a beer mug as I split a large bottle with my wife.

A: Very dark. Almost no head when poured out of the bottle, to my disappointment.

S: Nice coffee, chocolate, and almost a brown bread aroma.

T: Fair representation of the style. I was expecting something bigger and bolder considering the alcohol content. Coffee and chocolate notes predominate, with bitterness but little hop aroma as expected.

M: Very smooth and silky, easy on the tongue.

D: I had no problem getting my mug down.

Porters are my least favorite style, but I did enjoy this one. Victory is one of my favorite breweries.

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Photo of rtepiak
3.77/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A mild on the baltic zest porter. Pour is a weak head of about a half a finger. Between dark amber brown and black. Nose of a bit of coffee and brown sugar. Palate is a baltic understated by and american porter. Sweet and warm, but no zest of baltic sour to clean the palate. Nice molasses. A tad boozy which is expected but the sweet isn't balance like a baltic with a leathery bitter sour earthy quality. A nice twist at most to some yes american porter aspects. Some anise to make things interesting.

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Photo of BigMike
4.15/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Best by date of 6/24/2011

Pours a very dark brown borderlining on black. Held up to the light there's ruby reddness around the edges. The head is light tan and thin. About one finger with not much retention.
Roasted notes out the wazoo. Chocolate,charcole,black licorice, and some damp cave qualities. Smells real good.
Lots of chocolate on the tongue. Alcohol makes it presence known early but disappears quickly. Some espresso coffee and dark fruits. Nice touch of smokiness. Delicious!
Mouthfeel rules on this. Smooth and creamy. Nice medium body with perfect carbonation.
This is a really really good beer from Victory. I can't believe I've never had this before. I will definitely drink again and I highly recommend this one.

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Photo of canucklehead
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Like a lot of reviewers I expected a bigger bolder beer but once I let it warm up it had lots of nuances and really worked as a food friendly Baltic Porter. Not in your face like a lot of takes on this style but rather a classy big beer with dark fruit and some chocolate on the finish.

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Photo of metter98
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer poured very dark amber (near black) in color with a finger high tan head that quickly faded leaving a ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass. A light to moderate amount of carbonation is visible from the rising bubbles.
S: The aroma is rather sweet and has notes of toasted malts. There are also some hints of dark fruits in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and also has notes of brown sugar, caramel malts, coffee beans and toffee.
M: It feels medium-bodied and very creamy and smooth on the palate. There is a moderate amount of carbonation.
D: The beer is very drinkable for the style; the alcohol is well hidden from both the aroma and taste.

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Baltic Thunder from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Beer rating: 3.87 out of 5 with 926 ratings
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