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.

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Reviews: 539 | Ratings: 926
Photo of EyePeeAyBryan
3.04/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Not sure the age on this but poured strong with a nice head and ruby darkness. Smell seemed muted along with sweet flavors, no bite or smoke/chocolate that I'd expect from this style. Clearly this fella was way passed his prime and ended up going down the drain.

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Photo of Ohiovania
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The wine barrel used is fantastic. The aroma is fantastic. I just wish the stout was a little more robust so that it wasn't so dominated by wine character. The fade is a dry yet sweet burnt char that I'm split on whether I like it or not.

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Photo of arizcards
3.58/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a bomber at Opperman's Cork 'n' Ale in Saginaw last Saturday for $6.99. No bottling date.

Beer poured light brown with an OK head that did not last long.

Nose has hints of roasted malts and cocoa.

Taste is primarily cocoa malt dominated with some hopping to keep the sweetness at bay.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied and not overly smooth.

Overall this must be an older bottle given the lack of "oomph" as i am not finding it on the website. A little disappointed in this one as Victory has been nothing but solid in my experience.

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Photo of jzeilinger
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In review is a 2012 cork and cage bottle.

A - Pours a very dark ruby / burgundy color with a generously thick pinkish tan lacing ring which morphs into a thick layer across the top of the glass.

S - Red wine, tart red grapes, oak, roasted caramel chocolate malt, and plums.

T - Palate is dominated by red wine and oak flavors over the top of chocolate malt with a touch of tang from the red grapes. Leaves a mild chocolate coating in the mouth that gets beat down by the red wine and oak factor.

M - Medium to heavy medium body, velvety carbonation, and a lingering mild chocolate bitterness.

O - This bottle is WAY better with a few years on it compared to a young one.

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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 chinchill
4.18/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22 bottle (2013?) served in a Belgian snifter.
Pours with an undersized, bubly weak head ... and that's the end of my noteworthy complaints. The body itself is a dark ruby-brown color. The rich aroma is loaded with dark fruit notes, particularly raisin and dried plums, and has hints of chocolate, dark bread and coffee. The flavor does not disappoint. It is rich and fruity, with hints of dates, raisins, dried plums and faint coffe22 bottle served in a Belgian snifter.
Pours with an undersized, bubbly weak head ... and that's the end of my noteworthy complaints. The body itself is a dark ruby-brown color. The rich aroma is loaded with dark fruit notes, particularly raisin and dried plums, and has hints of chocolate, dark bread and coffee. The flavor does not disappoint. It is rich and fruity, with hints of dates, raisins, dried plums, toffee and faint coffee. The high ABV is a bit too obvious here but there aren't really any overly boozy aspects. e. The high ABV is a bit too obvious here but there aren't really any overly boozy aspects.

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Photo of SebD
4.04/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: It has a nice dark brown/amber color to it with some ruby hues shinning through. It has a nice creamy beige head that dies down moderately slow and leaves light lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of dark fruit (plums, figs and raisins), sweet toffee, caramel, roasted malts and some chocolate. Smells great!

Taste: Like the aromas, it has loads of dark fruit, sweet toffee and caramel, roasted malts, a light grassy bitterness and some sweet chocolate in the back.

Mouthfeel: It has a low carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied by good flavors and aromas. Not quite what I was expecting for a Baltic Porter. It has a lot of Barleywine characteristics but somehow this Porter/Barleywine hybrid works well. Worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of scotorum
3.82/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the 22 oz. bomber into a Unibroue flute.

a: Clear dark copper with an inch thick offwhite head which receded to thin surface foam and patchy lacing.

s: Dark ripe fruit and malt

t: Follows the nose with the addition of some smoke and hop bite at first.

m: Light to medium, ok body, plenty of carbonation tingle.

o: A curious brew for a Baltic porter, more a barleywine/brown ale/porter hybrid. Flavorful and eminently sippable..

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Photo of BWED
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Growler pour into a nonic pint.

A- Black, dark red highlighting. Tan 1/4" head, kind of an espresso crema style. A bit lacy.

S- Coffee, cocoa, small hint of dark fruits and booze.

T- Roasted sweetness. Malty. Not as dry and roast as a stout but really nice for a strong porter.

M- Full body. Sweet body. But a balancing semi dry finish.

O- Great body and flavor. Heavy, but easy drinking.

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Photo of jpro
3.94/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle from James Island Pig when everything was 50% off. Poured into a dimpled mug...

A: Odd color... Brown - not even close to black; light ecru head - one finger; no retention, nor lace.

S: Bready; chocolatey; toasted caramel malt; fudge; wow.

T: Snappy chocolate malt and some toast; bitter / earthy finish; smooth coffee on end, too.

M: Full-bodied; high carbonation.

O: A nice, hearty brew!

*from notes 02.04.14

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

22 ounce bottle into tulip glass, no bottle dating. Pours lightly hazy dark reddish brown color with a 2 finger dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big chocolate, cocoa, caramel, biscuit, toast, nuttiness, brown bread, brown sugar, raisin, plum, light roast, herbal, and toasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good complexity of dark/toasty malts and light yeast ester notes; with good strength. Taste of chocolate, cocoa, caramel, toast, biscuit, nuttiness, brown sugar, brown bread, light roast, raisin, plum, herbal, and toasted earthiness. Minimal bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of chocolate, cocoa, toast, biscuit, caramel, nuttiness, brown bread, light roast, herbal, and toasted earthiness on thin finish for a good bit. Damn nice balance and complexity of dark/bready malts and moderate fruity yeast ester flavors; with great malt robustness and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a moderately creamy, smooth, and bready mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice Baltic porter. All around nice balance, robustness, and complexity of dark/bready malt and light-moderate yeast ester flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.5/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cellared bottle best by 3/26/13 at 50 degrees into goblet
Aroma of malts and grain
Head small (1.5 cm), fizzy, light brown, mostly diminishing
Lacing average
Body appears dark brown or black, but when held to the light, a clear dark ruby redness is evident
Flavor begins with slight roasty/toasty goodness, with hints of dates(?), no hops, no diacetyl, no alcohol
Ends with a short-lived stomach burn
Palate is medium, slightly oily, soft carbonation

One of my favorite beers over the years, but it seems to be changing , ie getting cheapened. The maltiness and creamier textures of previous batches seems to be declining – it seems less complex.

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Photo of Altrurian
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

About five hours after the growler was capped, Baltic Thunder decanted a deep mahogany, with a crystalline garnet core when held to the light. A vigorous pour raised a head of slightly over a finger's width. It fell quickly, with little residual.

The beer's aroma is full and sweet. It's promise is borne out in a flavor that, while possessing dusky, malty elements, veers toward the confectionary. It might be a little too sweet--and perhaps simple--for some, but I find it fun and satisfying on a winter evening. The beer's impressive texture is smooth and frothy.

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Photo of Mitchster
3.37/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

$6.49 for a 22oz bottle @ Siciliano's. Brewed with "imported 2 row German malts and whole flower German hops" per the website. 8.5% ABV.

Pours out to a slightly hazy very deep brown, forming a creamy light tan head with very good retention and lacing. Carbonation is moderate, ~2.5 carbs or so. The aroma is of C120/Special B, grainy sweet pils malt, figs and dates and cocoa powder. Not much roast character. Faintly flowery hops. Mouthfeel is smooth, sweet, lightly cloying (appropriate to style), with some chocolate malt astringency in the finish. The taste starts with carob, a touch of alcohol, figs and dates, mild herbal bitterness, and this peculiar roasty note, like toasted pumpernickel bread, leather and moist pipe tobacco. Herbal hops throughout are odd for the style.

Interesting. I don't think many people would disagree with me if I were to say this is not to style (light in color, minimal roast, no black currants, raisins, prunes, late addition hops), but it's still a good just tastes more like an imperial brown. Nothing like Sinebrychoff, Okocim, Zywiec, Baltika #6, Carnegie Stark or Aldaris, but I still enjoy it on it's own merit. Rated here "to style".

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Photo of garuda
3.78/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Super deep ruby, nearly black, but has brilliantly clear highlights around the edges, especially when held to light. Off white head, though, has little retention and lacing.

S/T - Definitely a sweet rendition of the porter style. Dark fruit, plum, date, fig. Small amounts of roast and cocoa flavors. Low hop bitterness, touch of smoke.

M - Medium body, low carbonation. Finishes mostly clean with some residual sweetness.

O - 2012 vintage. Not sure how age has affected this as I've never had it fresh. I'm typically not a fan of the sweet/fruity porter renditions, but this seems mostly well executed.

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Photo of welldigger888
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

wonderful DEEP garnet hue with a thin tan head that recedes to a ring that laces the glass well.

Roasty toasty chocolaty goodness, some fruity esters and the alcohol is undetectable.

Fruity stone fruit roast malt unsweet chocolate coffee with a nice hop bitterness.

Medium full bodied, a hint of warming alcohol and quite quaffable brew. Best by date of aug. 2012, so this brew did well with aging. Prost, victory!

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a thin head on a brown colored body.
The aroma is rich caramel, toffee and burnt wood. Really nice.
The taste is a wonderful mixture of mildly bitter dark chocolate, toffee, caramel and mild lemon bitterness.
The texture is smooth with moderate carbonation.
Nicely done.

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Photo of azorie
3.85/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From Bomber bottle. I almost feel bad about reviewing this beer, not a big fan of victory at all. Its also got a strike against it as its somehow supposed to be a reinvention of Heavyweight Perkuno's Hammer. Lets clear the last point first, its not the same beer period. I drank every beer victory bottles and sends to Jacksonville and a few on draft and I guess I am the odd one out but there stuff blows in general.

ok my notes out of the way: lets try to give this a fair review on the old STYLE. first off porter/stouts I think there are all the same in theory. Again my notes only but If then to like what brewers call porters now days over stouts.

A: Dark black, tan head, some lacing. re poured from warmed up bomber in to mug not much head, sounds like normal around here. ;.) to style.

S: about all I can get is licorice and booze and dark malt/sugar. No hops of course, as expected. its all malt at the time. letting it hit 55f. humm black currants or blackberry jam? the alcohol meows at near 61F. to style

T: humm stout porter it is. HEHE joke there. more of RIS profile in modern standard framework of a TYPE? Sweet burnt malt, is the first and last thing I taste. booze is there but not too bad. not bitter, very sweet, very malty. mild acidic. Molasses and toffee and some coffee is there. To style.

m: smooth, creamy, rich, thick, low carbonation. fails here on style.

o: drinkable, not very refreshing, its a sipper, or night cap I guess. on style by BJCP standards. I liked it and would have again.
was it the best in this class no, for one I think the BJCP is full of shit. but I used their scale and this beer pass on that, except on 1. Even then I think is a decent beer not much to say, cheers! oh I may be overrating it cause I like boozy beers.

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Photo of jhartley
3.56/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber bottle into an over sized wine glass.
Looks like root beer, dark brown body which has some reddish brown to it when held up to the light. On fingers worth beige head that dissipated quickly, but leaves a nice lacing in the glass.
Smells of raisins, roasty malts and a little alcohol on the tail end.
Picking up some smokiness, plums, raisins and dark fruits and some cola sweetness.
Fair amount of carbonation and a creaminess to the body.
A tasty beer that I am going to try and find a fresher bottle as I think I may have an older bottle, but this is still a really tasty baltic porter. Heavier alcohol on this at 8% than I would expect, but a good beer for these upcoming winter months for sure.

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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 Hawksfan79
3.91/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Glass: Mug
Pours a dark brown with a thin white head That quickly dissipated. Smells very fruity reminiscent of plums. Slight alcohol aroma with a slight hint of toffee.
Fruity, strong raisin flavor. alcohol, and slight hints of cherry. Very similar to a barleywine as its sweet an alcoholic. Wonderfully complex, one of those beers that changes on your palette and gives you different character as you drink.
Light to medium bodied, much lighter than expected almost watery in texture. Alcohol warming followed lingering roasty malt finish.

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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 StoutHunter
3.1/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

I picked up a bottle of Victory's Baltic Thunder a couple weeks ago for $6.49 at The Lager Mill. I've been liking the Baltic Porter's lately and since I really liked the last bomber I got from Victory I decided to take a chance on this one, so lets see how it goes. No visible bottling date, 2012 Vintage. Poured from a brown 22oz bottle into a snifter.

A- I like the label on this beer, it's well done and it has a cool look to it. It poured a darker brown color that took on some dark ruby hues when held to the light with two and a half fingers worth of tan head that quickly died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and left a little bit of lacing behind. This beer looked ok, but the color was a little light for the style.

S- The aroma starts off with a higher amount of medium sweetness followed by a good amount of malts that are caramel and medium roasted and also impart some chocolate aromas. After that comes an earthy and grainy aroma followed by a familiar lager yeast aroma. The aroma was ok, but it wasn't as roasty and robust as most Baltic Porters, the yeast seemed to stick out a little too much also.

T- The taste seems to be pretty similar to the aroma and it starts off with a higher amount of medium sweetness along with a good amount of caramel and roasted malts that impart some grainy, caramel, chocolate, and some lighter roasted flavors. Up next comes an earthy flavor followed by some of the yeast that I picked up in the aroma. On the finish it had a lighter amount of bitterness with no trace of alcohol and it had a lightly roasted and sweet aftertaste. This was a pretty average tasting Baltic Porter, it wasn't as roasted and rich as it should, it tasted watered down.

M- Pretty smooth, a little creamy, on the lighter side of being medium bodied with a good amount of medium carbonation. The mouthfeel was pretty average, it was going in the right direction but when it came to the body it was just too light and thin for the style.

Overall I wasn't too impressed with this beer and I thought it was an average at best example of the style, all the aspects of this beer seemed to be much lighter then they should be and it didn't come together the way that a good Baltic Porter should. This beer had ok drinkability, it was pretty smooth and on the lighter side, but the flavors just didn't hold my attention and one is enough for me, I wouldn't want any more than that. What I liked the most about this beer was price, if this was $10 I would be very disappointed, but I think it's priced reasonably. What I liked the least about this beer was how much lighter most of the aspects of this beer were compared to most Baltic Porters, it just seemed to be lacking in every aspect. I wouldn't buy this beer again, I would much rather have a Thirsty Trout Porter and it's a way better Baltic Porter and it costs less, I wouldn't recommend it to my friends. All in all this beer left me wanting more and I don't think it did the style justice. IT seems like Victory is pretty hit or miss for me and this was another miss, better luck next time guys.

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

Poured from 22oz bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: dark amber-brown hue with a finger of creamy tan head that dissipates pretty quickly. Head is limited and I prefer my Baltic porters a little darker, but this isn't too bad.

Smell: rich caramel malt aroma with a hint of chocolate around the outside. Reminds me a lot of a dark European lager (which, I suppose, it is). It is good, but doesn't seem robust enough for the style.

Taste: caramel sweetness with a little bit of toasty malt and a little bit of chocolate. Chocolate is a little more pronounced than in the aroma, but not a ton. This beer is not bad, per se, but it is boring. I'm not getting a whole lot out of the experience.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with a good level of carbonation and a pretty good creaminess. I like it.

Overall: aside from the good texture, this beer is kind of blah for me. There's nothing really wrong with it, but it really doesn't tickle my fancy the way Baltic porters usually do.

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Photo of BEERMILER12
4.01/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark mahogany color with 1/2 a fingers worth of head

S: Solid earthy presence along with the lager yeast and some chocolate notes, light fruitiness, and some caramel/toffee as well

T: Follows the nose. Starts off with a earthy stone fruitiness which flows into some lightly roasted malts that impart the toffee and caramel notes. Alcohol nowhere to be found

M: Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Soft and smooth

O: A really nice dark lager with plenty of flavor. Easy to drink, especially given the 22 oz. format, and priced very well at $3.99. If you like baltic porters, I'd recommend trying this one

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