Dark Star Porter | Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's

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Dark Star PorterDark Star Porter
223 Ratings
Dark Star PorterDark Star Porter

Brewed by:
Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's
Kentucky, United States

Style: English Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A rich and robust blend of light, caramel, and dark malts sets the stage for BBC Dark Star Porter’s robust presence on the palate. This smooth but robust porter has complex notes of chocolate and roasted grains balanced by additions of traditional English hops, creating a delicious chocolaty and smooth ale.

35 IBU

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 223 |  Reviews: 151
Reviews by SinHippie:
Photo of SinHippie
3.5/5  rDev -3%

More User Reviews:
Photo of JMD71
3.82/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Warriorsoul for this sample. Sampled & reviewed on 2/23/07:

Ap: Almost no head raised from vigorous pour. Deep mahogany brown. No carbonation evident. Past its prime or intentional?

Ar: Amoky, toasted roasted malts dominate. Some bitter chocolate in the background. Cocoa. Almost a bit of chocolate pudding.

Ta: Nice roasted/chocolate malt flavor! Nicely balanced malts with a good hop bite in the finish. Fully flavored & rounded. Good taste experience....

Mo: Medium to full bodied. Rich & coats the palette, but not cloying. Bitterness cleans off the palette with a dry finish.

Dr: Smooth drinking. Nice & easy. Not too rich to detract from the drinkability, but rich enough to measure up as a robust porter.

Comments: Flavors nicely melded & work well in combination. One of the better examples of the style that I've sampled. Wish it was available in MA!

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Photo of orbitalr0x
3.82/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice black pour with deep ruby highlights when held up to the light. A tan head appears and falls to leave a nice ring. Lovely coffee tones waft into my nose, like I just opened a can of Folgers. HInts of cocoa and toasted barley. Very enjoyable nose.

First sip opens with a bitter coffee, there's a lot of burnt grains in there as well as hints of chocolate. I seem to sense a bit of lactic creaminess in there too. The nose is bigger than the flavor here and while it's enjoyable I was expecting more.

Mouthfeel has nice creamy aspects as well as a good medium body. Good for the style and seperates it from the stouts. I could have a few of these in one sitting...but it's not one I would search out. A good porter overall. Thanks to merlin48 for the opportunity to sample this brew.

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Photo of merlin48
3.6/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle with "best before July, 04" date on label. Pours an opaque, deep brown, nearly black, color with a short lived tan head. Some webs of sheet lace were left behind. Nose was somewhat subdued, with burnt coffee highlighting a background of smoke, cocoa, and anise. Mouthfeel is creamy, with medium carbonation and a mild bite from the hops. Taste is based on caramel malts and is highlighted by dark roasted coffee, a hint of bittersweet chocolate, some smokiness, and some underlying floral/herbal hops. Finishes with a dry and bitter chocolate aftertaste that lingers for quite a while. A middle of the road porter that is very drinkable with its light body and absence of anything to overwhelm.

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Photo of nem2006
3.74/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer is a very dark brown with a small head that did not last very long. Some nice lacing is left on the glass.

It smells strongly of coffee, toasted and a slight hint of dark chocolate. Very malty.

This is a medium to full-bodied beer. A pretty smooth texture. From the onset, you can feel the carbonation on the tongue. The taste starts with a slightly sweet start with a coffee middle followed by a subtle bitter finish to close it out.

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Photo of tigg924
3.87/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: 1/4 inch inch head, dark brown

Smell: malt, nut, chocolate, small coffee

Taste: malt, nut, chocolate, coffee, bit of wood

Mouthfeel: smooth sweet start followed by a hard dry, semi-bitter finish...medium heavy

Drinkability: I could have two or three of these. This is a good, not excllent porter that is true to the style. A pleasant surprise

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Photo of donunrue
3.75/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
4.07/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a very dark brown in color, with a fizzy and short-lived tan-colored head. Nose is of roasted coffee, burned walnuts, bitter chocolate, and sweet caramel. Flavor follows suit. Brisk dark chocolate flavor, with a supporting cast of caramel sweetness, roasted nuts, and a slightly bitter aftertaste. Crisp and dry aftertaste. The flavor got much better as this beer warmed. The higher temps really smoothed everything out in the flavor profile. Slightly fizzy mouthfeel and medium-bodied. Good drinkability, especially as it warmed. Not too heavy.

Another solid offering from the BBC.

Another big thanks for AKSmokedPorter for this one.

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Photo of NoetheMatt
3.25/5  rDev -10%

Photo of far333
4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Murky muddy brown color with a low, beige head that sinks quickly. Aroma is hops backed with cocoa and raisin. Flavor is complex, with many nuances jumping out at different times. Initially caramelly, followed by cocoa with some chalkiness. This morphs to bitter coffee as it rolls toward the back of the mouth. The finish brings out raisin and molasses, and a hop bitter lingers in the back of the throat. Medium carbonation with a smooth mouthfeel. Fine webbed lacing all around the glass. Nice selection, could use more roasted maltiness for my tastes.

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Photo of yankeeheel
2.71/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a beautiful dark brown/black with a fluffy soap suds espresso colored head.

Smells weakly of coffee. Perhaps a little toasted.

Tastes very weak and metallic. Washed out weak coffee flavors try to break through but are squashed down by this overwhelming metallic twang. Very weak on the porter flavors.

Moderate in mouthfeel, also way too much fizz here.

Sorry, this one is not for me.

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Photo of joeydabomb
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of drunkensailor
2.41/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

from the bottle to a mug, fairly aggressive pour. Dark black color with a thick caramel creamy foam, visible flecks of something, makes me excited, 9reminds me of a few great barley wines). Light in the aroma, but did catch a bit of roasty sweetness, can't tell of what though. Taste is all right, notice a few subtleties to it (coffee, chacolate?) but the beer is a bit watery, not as thich and full bodied as the appearance would suggest. I've heard bad things about BBC from a few folks, so this is the first one of thier brews I've tried. I would say that while not the best porter, it was an enjoyable drink, and I'm now going to plan an outing of my other brew brethren to check out what else they have in store. I'll let you know ....

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.28/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a dark ruby brown with a tan head that dwindles pretty quick, but it dows leave some nice tightly packed fine lacing all around my chalice. Aroma: Not getting too much strong tones but there is a nice mellow mixture of milk chocolate and very mild coffee roasts. Taste: Has a peculiar chalkiness in the finish but before that it starts as a relatively sweeter porter with the dry finishing notes of the deep roasted malts mild coffee tone to it with the creamy chocolate flavor. Mouthfeel: Lighter bodied porter not bad a bit overcarbonation, not overly impressed. Drinkability: A decent session porter I wouldn't shy away from this one next time I see it but there are many better offerings out there.

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Photo of chinchill
3.71/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle, notched production date of April 2013, served in a snifter.

Pours clear but very dark brown with a small and weak head.

Aroma: ample notes of milk and medium chocolate with roasted grains.

Flavor: chocolate, leaning more to the dark chocolate side than does the aroma. Malty sweetness is mostly counter-balanced by English hops. Long lasting aftertase features dark roasted grains.

Feel: smooth; medium body

O: Chocolaty, even for style.

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Photo of monoXcide
3.28/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This is my first American Porter so take that into consideration when reading.

Appearance - Very dark. The only light that got through it was just around the edges of the glass. Poured with a slight head and OK lacing.

Smell - Musty burnt grass like qualities here. I'm not quite used to that.

Taste - Burnt and bitter, but not overwhelmingly bitter. I suppose that is some of the attributes of this style and it does a good job of presenting these qualities. Again, I'm not quite used to that but if that is what you are looking for then it does not disappoint.

Mouthfeel - A little too carbonated. It is about as carbonated as a coke. I can still drink it though but not as pleasing as I would like for it to be.

Drinkability - Due to the carbonization of this it is a bit hard to take multiple sips one right after the other. I also don't quite like the burnt bitterness of it but if that is what you like then it here. Perhaps I could warm up to this style, given enough time.

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Photo of LXIXME
3.28/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of asabreed
4.15/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Very very dark with thick rings of lacing left and a thick chunky mocha-colored head. Looks like a porter that I definitely want to drink.

Smell: Roasted malt, slight dark chocolate and light coffee, a bit of nice dark berries, and some slight hops.

Taste: What this mostly lacks is a long lingering finish, but as is, this is a solid brew. I like the fruitiness of the berries, along with the mild chocolate and coffee flavors also. Finishes with those attributes and a bit of hops. Like I said, a longer finish would be awesome, but this is a solid porter.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and full without sticking to the teeth, and it's fairly silky to boot.

Drinkability: A solid porter that's very easy to drink and easy to make a session out of. Solid on all accounts I think. My second Bluegrass brew and another that I've really enjoyed.

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Photo of Retroman40
3.49/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A very fine beer, but I think it's a little closer to a good stout than what I think of when I hear "Porter".

A - Poured a very dark brown (not black), very little head but retained a thin lace throughout.

S - Roasted barley with very slight hop note.

T - Coffee, chocolate and roasted barely.

M - Very rich, almost "chewy".

O - Like I said above, a very fine beer but more like a stout.

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Photo of secondtooth
3.95/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark is right, This is a deep black, indeed. Nice tan head, and good lace.

Aroma is burnt dark chocolate. Nice.

Tastes chocolatey, with a nice roastiness and a slightly bitter finish.

A really solid and representative example of a sessionable porter. A winner, and one I'd easily return to, or refer as a fine and drinkable beginner's porter.

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Photo of dirtylou
3.58/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz single, hauled by kmpitz2

is this one named for the dead song or is that strictly a coincidence? either way...

appearance: dark, almost pitch black, maybe a ruby tint, just maybe...very light brown head and creamy lacing

smell: cocoa powder, roasted malts, some coffee bean, a dark fruitiness going on in the background, earthy

taste: burnt coffee, cocoa powder, dark roast, dark fruit, some mild hoppiness, toasted malts...somthing missing here i think

mouthfeel: not as creamy as i'd like

drinkability: pretty drinkable

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Photo of prototypic
3.57/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: It's very dark brown in color (nearly black) with a minimal head. Retention was extremely short and no lacing lined the glass.

Smell: Big roasted malt aroma up front. Dark chocolate and coffee scents creep in and give it a very full and complex smell. Slight bit of a toasted nuts in there.

Taste: Espresso and coffee flavor really predominates and probably masks some of the other flavors. Roasted malt and dark chocolate flavors are there, but certainly are a distant second to the coffee. Toasted nut flavors are barely noticeable.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's thin and light bodied. Probably a little too thin for this style. Carbonation level is pretty good. It's relatively smooth and drinkable. Drinkability is somewhat limited by the flavor. Overall, it's a decent offering. Worth a try.

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Photo of freewill35
4/5  rDev +10.8%

Photo of kenito799
3.17/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Best before date March 2008. Purchased at BBC S. 4th St, Louisville.

Pours a dark brown coffee color, small tan head recedes to a ring, some tiny wisps of lace left.

Aroma is pleasant, chocolate and roasted notes. One the palate, all roasted bitterness, cocoa, both hop and char bitterness in the finish. A bit too much bitterness without a lot of complexity...certainly a decent beer but does not thrill. Likely better on tap, worth another try when at a BBC brewpub.

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Photo of russpowell
3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this at the airport in Cincinati

Pours mahogany with a 1" off white head. Good head retention & lacing

S: Slight fruittyness & some roasted grains

T: Fruitty up front then roasted malt & grainyness, with some hop bite. Finishes fruitty with a slight choclate flavor

MF: Light to medium bodied with good carbonation

Drinks okay, just an okay porter

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Dark Star Porter from Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's
Beer rating: 3.61 out of 5 with 223 ratings