Coal Porter | Atlantic Brewing Company / Mainely Meat BBQ

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Coal PorterCoal Porter

Brewed by:
Atlantic Brewing Company / Mainely Meat BBQ
Maine, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A superb porter, hearty & dark. This one is a staff favorite, made with pale, crystal, Munich, chocolate, and black malts. The darker malts give Coal its color and rich flavor. We use Target and Willamette hops to yield a very subtle hop flavor in this porter.

We cellar this beer for close to six months before releasing it on the thirsty throngs of fans.

Added by UnionMade on 11-04-2001

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Ratings: 449 |  Reviews: 283
Photo of mobud
3.38/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured into SA glass from bottle.

A- Really dark brown with dark oatmeal and creamy head.

S- There is a sweet roasted coffee/toffee smell that is very inviting.

T- Roast to burnt malt flavor jumps out at you. It is not all bad, but different than I usually expect from a porter.

M- Medium with the creamy head adding a little extra on the backend.

D- This beer was a nice change from my usual porters. I would have again, but would not hunt it down.

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Photo of jmalex
3.01/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

I bought this from the brewery this past week during my trip to Maine. And as is my usual feeling - Bring on the porter!

APPEARANCE: Pours a deep brown/black with ruddy brown highlights. The head starts well and drops to a medium collar and a modest patch of bubbles.

SMELL: The aroma is not too strong at all. Some deep whiffs yield a mostly roasted character heavy on burnt black malts. Very vague hints of caramel exist as does a trace of diacetyl.

TASTE: My first reaction is that it's waaay to heavy on the bitter black malts. The taste is harsh and burnt... like coal(!), kind of. Before the onslaught of harshness, the beer has some good rounded caramel and chocolate flavors, but all are destroyed as the bitter charcoal flavor lingers beyond the end.

MOUTHFEEL: Well bodied, but a bit low on carbonation.

DRINKABILITY: Sadly, this suffers here because of the harsh quality of the beer. The alcohol is masked well otherwise, and one could certainly do worse than to drink this.

Overall, I'm not too impressed with Coal Porter. I've had far better in the style and would seek out one of many alternatives in the future.

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Photo of argock
3.4/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into a pint glass

A: Beautiful dark brown with reddish tint and thin but ample mocha head

S: Roasted malts, coffee, cocoa, and some vanilla; best feature of this beer

T: Mellow and not syrupy with roasted malts, coffee and chocolate overtones and a nice touch of bitterness in the finish

M: Gritty feel and a bit thin with an astringent aftertaste that is not pleasant

D: Not a bad up-front taste but the mouthfeel is tough to take

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Photo of beeragent
3.72/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from a 12oz. bottle. The beer pours a deep brown, forming a thin mocha head. No lacing on the glass. The aroma is mostly coffee and roasted malt. The taste is roasted malt, along with a light coffee/chocolate flavor. Nothing special. The mouthfeel is medium and smooth. Easy porter to drink. Overall, this is just an average American porter. Nothing special, but that doesnt mean its bad. I could see keeping a sixer of this in the fridge. Try it!

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Photo of allengarvin
3.95/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very dark beer, with just some ruby tinting on the edges. The head on top is solid and long-lasting. Nose is slow to deliver: on first whiff after the pour I didn't get much, but now I find a nice roasty cocoa aroma. Flavor is quite roasted, more stout-like than typical porters, but there's a pleasant accompanying chocolate taste, though it takes a back seat to the roasted malt. Bitterness is above moderate but no noticible hop flavor. Black malt flavor lingers for a long time. Body seems a tad on the thin side for a beer of this strength.

Not my favorite style, but I can appreciate it as a well-done porter.

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

Appears blackish-brown with a touch of red. Pours a frothy brownish head that settles pretty quickly. The smell immediately struck me as roasted coffee beans. The tatse brought out more of the charcoal flavor, true to its name. It has a thinner consistency than most porters but it isn't what I would call watery. A pretty nice compromise for a very "drinkable" porter. Not overpowering at all. I like it and would consider this something that would always be a solid choice for taste and refreshment.

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Photo of HardTarget
3.49/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle Inspection: 12 oz brown twisty, best before July notched, but no year notched, which is a bit scary. No other information what so ever.

Aroma: Green hop, maybe a bit of Fuggles, a good dose of vanilla, and a bit of clean yeast. Some deep roasted malt and chocolate rounds out a very nice nose.

Appearance: Deepest brown bordering black with thick ruby edges that show good clarity. Dark tan head lasts but drops to a thick collar without lacing.

Flavor: Mirrors the nose, maybe all a bit more muted. Heavy roasted malt approaches a burnt quality. Hops are just a ribbon of bitter toward the swallow and linger a bit. Some sweetness manages to hold out.

Mouthfeel: Medium heavy body, slightly creamy texture and a bit oily in the finish.

Overall Impression: Great nose fails to deliver on its promise. I’m not a big Porter fan, so review might be a bit heavy handed. It’s a fair beer with some nice qualities, but it’s no Cadillac Mountain.

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Photo of brewcrew76
3.5/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a deep brown/black with ruby highlights and a 2 finger brown head with spotty lacing.

S - Roasted malt and choclate with a slight astringency. There is the slightest off aroma that I can't place, maybe a touch vegetal.

T - Roasted malt and burnt coffee with some bitterness on the finish.

M - Slightly on the thin side with low carbonation.

D - Good but just a step below from the many other fine porters available.

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Photo of HumuloneRed
3.07/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. Bottle. The beer pours a clear dark red with a creamy light tan head and soapy lacing.
The aroma is roasty, malty, and somewhat grassy.
The flavor has a lot roast with notes of nuts and bitter- sweet chocolate with a bitter almost astringent bite in the finish. The finish becomes less astringent as it warms but it still has a chalky and unpleasant mouth feel.

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Photo of Nipitato
2.73/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Picked up a bottle at Downtown Wine and Spirits in Somerville, MA.

A: Deep dark brown. Tan head dissipates almost completely after pour.

S: Not a particularly impressive aroma for a porter. Mild sweet coffee aroma. Slightly roasted. This is what a porter should smell like but neither characteristic is robust.

T: Taste points don't really flow well together. Roasted flavor through out. Very bitter almost burnt dry finish gets in the way of taste. No prominent coffee or chocolate characteristics.

MF: Medium light. Too watery. Astringent. Pretty high carbonation.

D: There are definitely smoother and better tasting porters out there. I would not buy this in a bottle again.

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Photo of drseamus
2.91/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: This beer pours a deep brown that shines with a deep ruby color when held to the light. The head is very thick and frothy and is a light mocha color. The head lasted forever and eventually fell unevenly creating a pillowy surface.

S: Roasted malt dominates the aroma in this beer. There are some dark fruits in the background. It isn't very strong though.

T: There is a good roasted flavor initially, but it becomes very thin towards the end of the sip. There is some chocolate in there as well.

M: This beer is too thin. I like my porters to be a bit creamier or heavier, or anything like this really.

D: This beer isn't that bad, but it isn't among the top porters I've had. I'd go to it in a pinch.

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Photo of KevPet84
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I have to think that this is whaat most people think of when porter id metioned. It is dark in color, black to presise. Tan head that was decient and laced well. The aroma was malty and roasted.The taste was not as sweet as the smell leads, roasted character, and the bitter. The same kind of bitterness that the dry stouts have. All in all a good beer, but not my favorite porter. To bitter and dry for a porter that smells sweet.

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Photo of SkeeterHawk
3.52/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a very dark ruby brown color with a very small 1/8" head of tan bubbles that fell within about 20 seconds. It ended up as a barely detectable ring. There was no noticeable lacing left on the glass after swirling.

Aroma: Very reserved roast with a more defined sweet and toasty malt presence that is more dominant...this is a little unusual for a Porter. There is a mild metallic note to this beer that I wonder if it is a false impression that I am getting off of the dark malts.

Taste: The flavor is pretty clean and malt focused with only a mild floral hop presence. This beer is really light bodied with some serious toasty malt complexity. It remindes me of a watered down Trappist style like a Rochefort and Soda or some such...if you can imagine that. The finish is definitely malt balanced with a sweet and mildly syrupy finish to linger. There is not much here to challenge the malt...there is a bit of balance from the roast malt, and a bit from subtle hop additions but that is about it.

Opinion: This beer comes across as as much as a brown ale as a Porter. I think that the overall presentation of this beer is a bit lacking. I like balanced Porters, but this one is kinda weak IMO. I imagine that this beer is made with the idea of appealing to the masses so that there really isn't much outstanding about it so that you can sway the newbie to craft beer. It is OK, and I have a whole six pack to drink. After I go through that, I doubt that I will pick up another one any time soon.

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Photo of Liquids
3.93/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Left out to warm to cellar temp before pouring, a rich brown with deep amber notes, a full cascading head that is creamy and a bit bubble - this one really loved being warm and took a long time to settle. Letting it do so turned the head into a pillowy mass with a darker than off white almond- brown color, and the head held to the end leaving a dollop of foam in the bottom of the glass.
Aroma is very english noble and dark malt aromas. Nice. Taste is roasty, sweet, charred, full flavored, especially with the temp not making anything here. The balance here is actually between malt sweetness and roasted charry bitterness of the malt instead of hops. Hops are present but dont make much of a showing. I prefer smoother porter style, but this is an impressive, well done version if you like it rough around the edges rather than smooth and silky. Mouthfeel is on par, full and not over carbonated, and possible to little for some. Overall, a great beer from a company I just learned about.

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Photo of muffguy4beer
3.27/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into tulip glass.

Appearance: dark brown in color with decently thick brown head.

Smell: coffee, smokey, hops. hints of chocolate.

Taste: coffee, chocolate and nice hop bitterness to finish it up.

Mouthfeel: light body, noticeably carbonated.

Drinkability: Fairly drinkable but I would probably only have this once and a while. Solid porter, I have had better.... but not many.

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Photo of JMD71
3.8/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Warriorsoul. Thanks, bro! Sampled & reviewed 1/7/07:

Ap: Deep ruby red to dark brown hue with very little head when poured. Almost reminiscent of a imp stout in apearance from little head. Carbonation seems a bit low for a porter.

Ar: Earthy fruit, roasted barley & chocolate notes. Toast & a slight roastiness prevades.

Ta: Wonderful rich roasted malt with bitter chocolate malt noted. Very well balanced between sweet, roasted malt & hop bitterness.

Mo: Medium bodied. Smooth & clean. Carbonation was well suited to style after it seemed low in appearance.

Dr: Very easy drinkning porter. Flavors well balanced to make this go down smooth.

Comments: Good example of a well balanced porter that exhibits nice roastiness with a slight offsetting hop profile. Recommended...

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

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a dense brown body with a good carbonation of tiny bubbles that can be seen when held to the light. There is a creamy thick dark tan head that last for a good bit.

S- This beer has a soft black roasted malt aroma with a slight earthy note.

T- This beer has a nice dark roasted malt flavor with a slight black grain bitterness in the finish that takes the place of hops. There is a soft dry cola note to the malt and a hint of tar in there. There is a chalky taste in the background of the malt but it is pleasant.

M- This beer has a medium-full mouthfeel with a slight slippery note in the finish.

D- This beer fits the name very well and has a taste with good depth. There are no real hop qualities but the bitterness of the malts helps the finish.

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Photo of orfeu
4.1/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Obscure mahogany with a creamy taupe foam cap. Aromas of sweetened coffee, souring black patent and chocolate malts, and a tart, leafy hop addition. Substantially bitter in the taste, with coffee flavors predominating. Toasted grain husks and grassy hop spice emerge later in the sip. Slightly fuzzy and expansive in the mouthfeel. Medium body. Off-dry and somewhat angular bite at the finish. Rides the porter fence betwen brown and robust, and it stands out as a memorable session worthy ale because of that. Recommended.

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Photo of brstilson
3.3/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: This beer pours dark with a reddish-brown hue on the edges. Not quite black like a stout

Smell: Beer has a deep, smokey aroma with some nut overtones. Hop aroma slight but not very detectable.

Taste: The smoke flavor is immediately apparent. Additionally, a strong pine flavor accompanies a very intense hop bitterness

Mouth Feel: Silky, but just a little bit sticky. Very dirty and unfiltered (not a bad thing)

Drinkability: Quite heavy and the smoke flavor may put off those with less of a taste for it. This beer is best a mouthful at a time, not for chugging.

Head retention: An Ivory colored head about 1 finger high resulted from a pour from the bottle into a mug. Dissipated as soon as it was disturbed. Left absolutely no lacing on the glass.

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Photo of Melchizedek
3.52/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours deep dark brown, murky except about the edges, with a modest but persistent enough head.

Aroma is pleasant, with just the coffee-and-cocoa texture you want from a solid porter. A little light berry underlies, along with a touch of liqueur and burnt toast. Toasted flavor hits instantly and is prominent throughout, though moderated by surprising hop in the middle and a mild yeastiness. Mouthfeel is medium to light, soft from carbonation with a dry but slightly sticky finish. A touch of cola character from the carbonation as it finishes.

This is nice - a good, drinkable, easy American porter. Performs well slightly colder than cellar temp and stays pleasant as it warms.

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Photo of mmmbeer
3.73/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle with best-by date not indicated and sediment on the bottom of the bottle (conditioned?). BA declares 6.5% but the website states 5.8%. It pours very near black (unfiltered crimson in light) and an inch of tan head that leaves light lacing. It smells vinous and roasted, with chocolate, raisins, and perhaps port. The flavor is robust, with roasted/chocolate/coffee malts, piney/citric hops, yeast?, lactose?, and a medium bitterness from the hops and burnt malts. The body is light and drying, powdery, with a light finish. Overall a good-drinking porter that would make for a nice session.

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Photo of BuckSpin
3.98/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A real pretty beer - the deepest, blood rose black-red imaginable, almost opaque. A finger's worth of loose, cream hues foam danced on that rudy beauty, fading slowly with an initial thick coating of lace - wild.

Nose is malts, mild coffee, some charcoal, yeasty. Its oily with currant & dried cherries. Thus far visually & olfactorly a great beer.

Its oily essence carries to the pallete. Initially its hopped, sharp, a bitter blast from the furnace this Coal stokes on the tongue. As it warms & mingles the hops grow bittersweet, dark caramel, malts, then a crisp crescendo of a finish, but alas a bitter aftertaste that isn't bad but is filmy & grey - eehhh.

This was a good porter, and one of the pretties beers I reviewed in a while. It could run the gammet from stew to spicy food and work. Definitely give it a shot, I know I will again.

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Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.2/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

AP: Black-ish brown color totally opaque and very thick looking. 1" thick chocolate milk-shake colored head, nice thick sticky legs follow.

Nose: Chocolate/roasted and wheaty malt scent with a hearty and mild hop scent that is very aromatic...this is a very hop scented porter.

Taste: A robust oaty and oaky chocolate malted flavor with a big roasty taste coupled with a sweet caramel like flavor, much like a big stout. The heady malted flavors segues nicely into a leafy, earthy hop finish.

MF: Thick, full bodied, very dense and could easily pass for a big stout.

DA: basically....yummy. A very heady Porter. I like it.

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Photo of Osiris9588
2.33/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12oz bottle. Pours a dark mahogany, not quite opaque. The beige head is two-fingers and fluffy, good retention and ample lacing.

The smell is dominated by bitter coffee, roasted malts, some vanilla, and licorice.The taste somewhat follows the aroma, but it seems lacking flavor, lightweight--there is the coffee, and kind of a choclolately/alcohol finish, but it seems dead and devoid of malt and muscle in the middle.

The mouth is light and bland, somewhat astringent and oily. This porter is tolerable, but I won't be having another.

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Photo of jcdiflorio
2.56/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a nonic glass,a light tan dense head about an 1" diminishing to a little more than a coating of foam.the color was very dark brown and opaque.
The aroma was very faint,really had to put the nose to it.Got a bit of a roasty,smokey aroma,very clean though.
The taste was roasty,smokey,burnt,a little caramelly,with a bit of a woody edge. A very sharp and bitter finish fades quickley.
A nice balance to all this though.
The mouthfeel was medium,a bit thin for the style I thought.
Drinkability was ok,but the flavor left a bit to be desired,a little light for a porter,a bit on the rough side as far as drinkability goes.

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Coal Porter from Atlantic Brewing Company / Mainely Meat BBQ
3.73 out of 5 based on 449 ratings.
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