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.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 927 |  Reviews: 540
Photo of jwolfie70
3.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at the Flying Pig in Malvern, PA. Poured into a pint glass, it was a reddish black pour with no head by the time it reached my table. The smell was of burnt malt, sweet molasses, with some metallic twange to it. The taste was a roasted malt flavor that was rather dry. Not overly sweet at all, like a lot of porters it was dominated more by the dark roasted malt flavors. A good beer that I was excited to try on tap.

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Photo of triplecoil
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a tulip at Publick House.

Poured a very dark black with brown highlights, no real head to speak of. Nose was very reserved, but there was some roastiness and some vanilla apparent. Taste was a little more upfront than the nose, but not by much--some burnt chocolates, hops clear up the malt nicely, moderate sweetness. Mouthfeel was very even and smooth and not overly viscous...right on for a porter (even an imperial).

Overall, this is a dangerous brew. Fairly high ABV coupled with incredible ease of drinking means a few of these might end up going down without being moderated. I think Victory really did a nice job balancing everything in this one.

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Photo of russpowell
4.04/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cheers to Ding for this one!

Pours a brownish chestnut with ebony tinges & 1+ finger of tan head. No head retention & minimal lacing

S: Roasted malt & chocolate

T: Loads of roasty malt, dryness & a bit of coffee up front. Roasty malt dominates as this warms, along with brown sugar & dryness. Finishes with chcolatey sweetness, some fruityness (figs & raisins). A strong finisher with some hints of boozey warmth

MF: Light/medium body with low carbonation, plus a bit of stickyness & some great warmth

Drinks fairly easy, a fairly good Baltic porter. The 8.5% ABV is well concealed

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Photo of IBUnit63
3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2-finger coffee ice cream head comes and goes a little quickly without a whole lot of lacing. Out of the bottle it looks like a good root beer; in mug with volume it's much more opaque and strcitly dark.

Tones of a dry Irish stout in whiffs; hop profile and chocolate extra-roasted malt are both fair and balanced. There's a little alcohol tinge here with a hint of brown sugar sweetness.

At first, aftertaste is a little tinny but what emerges is a powerful balance between slightly grassy hop bitterness, very dry roasted malt, the brown sugar and a velvet alcohol blanket.

The finish here is actually a little shallow and clammy, even at normal cellar temperatures, but there's counterbalanced yet separate warmth here also.

For the ABV level it's rather light and easy drinking.

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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 Minkybut
3.05/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I poured this big beer into my tumbler at 50 degrees. The beer was really black with a dark head that did not last very long at all. The smell was of coffee and roasted nuts smelling also and sour slightly. The taste was kinda flat and had a harsh alcohol burn aftertaste. I will not buy again.

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Photo of Phillyduke
4.32/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The bottle's label pays homage to the Perkuno's Hammer it is replacing by using a God-of-Thunder "Thor" hammer motif. The former comic book reader in me smiles.

Appearance: Pours thin and a deep dark brown, almost black. The thin, tan head fades quickly, but has some nice viscosity and lacing as I drink.

Smell: Strong, toasted malt smell with hints of chocolate.

Taste: Initially hits the palate as full-bodied and slightly sweet. Chocolatey malt flavor lingers after each sip. Hints of fruit (oranges? raisins?) peek out here and there. Surprisingly, the alcohol and strength isn't as noticeable as I would have thought with a name like "Baltic Thunder/Perkuno's Hammer". All the write-ups I read on this beer's predecessor made it out to be a real tail-kicker, which it isn' least not overtly. Although it doesn't taste "strong", this is a beer that will sneak up on you if you're not careful.

Mouthfeel: Tingles the front of the tongue and coats the mouth well, leaving a very nice warm feeling after each sip. I wish it were snowing out right now.

Drinkability/Final Thoughts: Another winner from Victory! Overall a very well balanced, smooth, surprisingly easy-to-drink beer. Not nearly as monstrous as it's made out to be. I could easily enjoy 2-3 bottles over the course of a winter's evening with a couple good cigars.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.83/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a dark brown body with a small, short-lived beige head.

Smell: Dark malty aroma with notes of chocolate, toffee, molasses, smoked figs, and green herbs.

Taste: Roasty dark maltiness with hints of chocolate and toffee with a fair amount of sweetness. Thinned out molasses. Figs and black cherry fruitiness. Taste of spearmint. Hint of smoke. Bright floral hoppiness with a medium bitterness. Flavor of fruit and mild coffee with plenty of alcohol warmth on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Moderate carbonation. Slight stickiness to the mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Pretty good. But don't take my word for it - drink and enjoy!

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

I grabbed a case of these from Victory on release day and I've been drinking them on and off for the past few weeks. Poured a clear, deep brown with a thick cap of brown/beige bubbles. Good head retention, thick lacing to start, becoming more spotty towards the end. Nutty aroma, some caramel and cocoa, light roast with a hint of grassy hops. Same in the flavour, but with more sweetness, milk chocolate, more grassy hops (surprisingly), and a bit more roast. Nicely balanced, with bitterness and faint tartness lingering, along with a delicate spicy warmth. The body was just above medium, carbonation was moderate, decent texture. Alcohol is well hidden. Highly drinkable, especially given the abv. It's definitely nice having (part of) a case kicking around the house.

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

22 oz. bomber poured into a nonic.

Pours a dark brown/black with a ruby outline. Creamy one finger light khaki colored head that slowly descends to a thin frothy layer. Some thin layers of stickiness left behind, not a whole lot though. Smell consists of butter, milke chocolate, and dark fruits. Some woody scents with a touch of vanilla extract as well. Very smooth aroma, and very enjoyable. Sweet coffee flavors up front with hints of vanilla and maple syrup. Caramel malt and a slight citrus hop bite find their way on the tongue as well. Brown sugar and molasses in the aftertaste. Smooth light to medium body with a tingling carbonation. I'm not a huge fan of the style, but this beer is pretty damn good. Very solid brew from Victory, I'm curious as to what some age would do to this one.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

thanks to Apriluvsbeer for the chance to try this beer!

A - dark auburn, almost black in color with a huge billowy tan head.

S - bakers chocolate, caramel and coffee notes dominate.

T - similar to the aroma but with a touch of tartness at the end of the sip.

M - medium bodied, smooth and nicely carbonated.

D - nice approachable brew.

I have had the chance to try the heavyweight version that inspired this beer. the young version was to raw, the aged version (6 years) was spectacular. This new brew seems to cut down the middle and produce a nice baltic porter.

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

Appearance: deep dark black with hints of brown, but nearly opaque. Viscous looking, decent lacing.

Smell: Surprisingly timid for a BP. little hints of vanilla and maple as well as roasted grain.

Taste: Somewhat sweet upfront with the maple flavor and also some fruity flavors as well. The hops have a quick pop in the middle and then it just kind of fades.

Overall: Very easy drinking for the style, although this beer left me wanting more. For a BP it just wasn't bold enough in my opinion, still an enjoyable beer.

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

Bomber poured into a gobblet. Ruby brown in color, 1/2 a finger of head quickly fading to a thin presence around the glasses edge. Fruit and malt in the nose. Sweet, roasted coffee and a pleasant bitterness in the finish. Smooth carbonation. Overall, lighter than expected.

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

S = There was a malty sweetness with some dark fruit character in the background.

T = Semi-sweet, roasted coffee flavor that was great upfront, but the underlying bitterness took over in the finish.

MF = Nice carbonation, although I thought it was a little thin in comparison to other baltic porters.

Overall, I was pleased with the Baltic Thunder, but I wasn't blown away. The bittering hops in the finish disappointed me. I am cellaring another bottle, so hopefully the rough edges will fade away.

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Photo of BattleRoadBrewer
3.2/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served cool in a standard pint.

Pours light, not much head, color was medium dark brown, mahogany, leaves negligible lacing.

Aroma is full of sweet maltiness, toastiness, honey malt and toffee. Strong woody earthiness--hops or yeast?

Flavor is malty and sweet with some dark fruitiness, not notably chocolately or roasty at all. Like concentrated Old Speckled Hen.

Goes down easy enough, not as heavy as I expected. No alcohol warmth or flavor.

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Photo of mnj21655
3.78/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bomber best by Dec 31 08 poured into a pint glass

Pours a very dark brown, not quite black but very close, in color with mahogany hints at the edges and about a finger of tan head that really didn't last all that long. Nice aroma although it isn't very strong. Seems fairly average. Malty sweetness, raisins, and a slight toasted character. The taste is another story however, assertive with some complexity but not overwhelming. This is a solidly malty beer. The first thing I am hit with in the taste is malty sweetness. After the sweetness some caramel and toffee notes meld nicely with raisins. Very little yeast character here, very clean thanks to the lager yeast. There is a bit of bitterness in the finish, not too much, just enough to balance this beer out. In the late finish I pick up a few fig/plum/raisin notes, quite nice. Also in the finish I detect some alcohol. The alcohol is just noticeable enough here to detract slightly from my enjoyment of this beer and makes this more of a sipper. Mouthfeel is good, medium-full body with moderate carbonation. Very smooth but comes across a bit thin. Drinkability is ok, I really enjoyed the sweet malts and esters in this beer but the alcohol had a tendency to be a bit "obvious" if I took a larger sip.

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Photo of techdiver
4.68/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep dark red brown that appears black unless held to light. Modest head that dissipates quickly.

Molasses, coffee, and chocolate to the nose.

Taste is very well balanced, just a great tasting melange of flavor.

Mouthfeel is light for this style, just an easy drinking and most enjoyable brew.

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

With a very slow pour, a dark brown color emerges with ruby-red hues when in direct light, thick looking but not opaque. a massive three-fingers deep, clumpy, thick, sea-foamy tan colored head crackles and dissiptes in a moderate fashion. You can see the big carbonation in this one, and hear the bubbles on-top crackling away. Semi-sticky lacing is left in it's wake.

The nose is very roasty, low on sweetness, but earthy and herbal hops balanced by a mildly sour scented yeast effect, the malt is of roasty coffee, nutty, peanutbuttery.

The malt flavor is also mostly roasty columbian coffee with a nice lager-lik sour yeastiness and herbal zest greets the pallette first. Dark choclate pops out later on in the malt and some mild nutty flavors. The finish is all about the sour-yeasty goodness.

This one is full-bodoed but not as hefty and thick as some versions, this one was a bit thin for taste. There is a nice smoothness along with the rather lively feel from the lager-like carbonation.

I love this style, this one is highly enjoable, maybe a bit low in the complexity department but I'm thinking this one will age really well.

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

I think this one will age well.

Well balanced smells of chocolate, coffee, a little booze, molasses and plum. What you smell is what you get. The taste is a little richer than I expected. A bit of complexity as all the flavors come together. Smooth drink but I felt the mouthfeel was a bit thin. Good drinkability.

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Photo of yourefragile
3.28/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 oz bomber poured into a pint glass. I really like the packaging of this beer. However, I am generally not a fan of Baltic Porters, but I will try to be objective.

A: Very dark, but clear deep brown/black with deep red hue against the light. Tawny head that dissipates pretty quickly without any lacing.
S: Slightly hot, bitter, fruity. Not really feeling this too much. There's a lot going on, smells good for a baltic porter but I'm not crazy about it. Not enough malt or hop presence.
T: Not quite as bitter as expected. Bitterness is more sweet, with a fruity taste and not much in the way of malt/coffee, etc. Slight burnt/toasted malt flavor. I like this better than most beers of this style, but still not crazy about it. I'd like more a malt presence.
M: Thinner than expected, slightly watery in the finish, medium body and creamy with moderate carbonation.
D: It took a while for me to finish the bottle and I didn't particularly enjoy it. It's a nice beer, subtler than I expected, but overall I'm just not impressed.

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

From the label: Truly a worldly beer, Baltic Thunder represents the Baltic Porter style admirably. Exhibiting the enticing, toffee roast of the British porter that originated the style in the 18th century, and the soothing, subtle fruit nuance of contemporary brews that flourish from Helsinki to Vilnius today, this dark lager honors the Baltic god of thunder. Created by an inspired collaboration of brewers and tempered with a touch of turmoil, Baltic Thunder rolls on to bring you enchanting light as the darkness fades.

Victory Baltic Thunder pours up with indignation & exuberance. The abundant carbonation creates a mountainous tawny colored head that sits prominently atop the deep russet-dark brown colored body. The rich caramel & roasted malt aroma is mostly dominated by chocolate that's reminiscent of cocoa nibs & café mocha with some earthy spiciness that hints of Bourbon vanilla, licorice root, Noble hops, and star anise. Very clean with a vinous, port wine quality. The roasted coffee flavor starts off slightly sweet & toasty with nuances of malted milk chocolate & toffee. There's an underlying herbal bitterness along with some ever present earthiness which imparts complexity and brings balance to this admirable brew. The bittersweet mocha finish is slightly rough and noticeably warming. This medium-full bodied Baltic Porter is a finely crafted example of the style, but lacks some finesse. A bit of cellaring should "hammer" out the rough edges. Here's to Perkunos, the God of Thunder!

CHEERS! Beertracker

*Taster's Note: Special thanks to markgugs for the bottle.

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Photo of RyanPB
4.2/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very likable. Poured into a pint glass with virtually no head to speak of. Thewre was definately a lot going on in the smell. Dark brownish black color that seems lit somehow. A little thin in terms of mouthfeel, but I certainly liked it. The toffee shows up very hard in the aftertaste.

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Photo of chefboy812
4.18/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into American pint glass

Amazing black with a deep red glow. Nice mocha head that falls slowly and leaves a solid lace tha seems to be refresshed continually from this lively brew.

the aroma is a little hot with booze. but under that a nice quick hop smack then a malt that realy got my mouth watering.coffe and molassas with a rum over tone.

the coffe comes into the profile with cream ths time. then caramel, and molassas, treacle with a little raisen and fig.

good mouthfeel, nice malt presence that balance well with the hops. sweet and chewy without being anoying

One of the best porters I have ever had.

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Photo of ppoitras
3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle obtained via Growling at the Moon from EGledhill. Thanks for the opportunity... Bext by Jan 02, 09.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 2 1/2" light brown head over the clear burgundy brown brew. Dense head gradually transitions from foam to liquid, with sticky lacing. Aroma is moderately of dark grains and fruitiness. Taste is dark maltiness upfront, intensifying in the middle coupled with some light fruitiness, and goes bitter for the close. Mouthfeel is alright, but seems a bit thin, and drinkability is pretty good. Not as hearty as I'd expect for the style, but not a bad brew by any stretch.

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