Black Jack Porter | Left Hand Brewing Company

517 Reviews
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Black Jack PorterBlack Jack Porter

Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: English Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Slight malt Sweetness with notes of dark chocolate, espresso and herbal hops.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-16-2001

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Reviews: 517 | Ratings: 1,369
Photo of Carolvs
3.24/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Not accustomed to being disappointed from Left Hand's offerings, but this one was a real let-down. Threadbare mouthfeel, so lacking in body in fact that it didn't even feel like a porter, but rather more of a scotch ale.

 221 characters

Photo of Lamar
4.51/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

An extremely tasty porter. Thin head and deep brown in the glass. Very malty with lots of coffee that cover the alcohol content. Mouthfeel is a bit light but in an unusually refreshing way for a porter.

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Photo of Devileyedog
4.26/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I'm the writer of practical reviews. It's hard to miss a coffee flavor. It is smooth and delicious... Because it's beer and Left Hand doesn't make a "bad" beer.

Sure, we can nitpick about color and smell (smells like espresso), but realistically if you like porters just try it out for yourself.

It will taste like a porter and a good one at that.

Plus, they get points for the label. It's pretty awesome. And you know, cool label means good beer. Always.

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Photo of hophugger
3.51/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

This porter is what a porter should be. Dark color with decent head and spotty lacing. I gt the coffee and chocolate that the bottle says I should get, but I also get a nice cool, black licorice that ads so much to this beer. Clean, cool finish !!!

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Photo of dacrza1
3.99/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

DATE: February 18, 2017... OCCASION: Having finally tracked this one down after a decade of first tasting it, I look forward to remembering it again... GLASSWARE: Hop Devil nonick...pours a dark, opaque body that is velvet-red where light reflects... the head is pure cream, half-finger in height, with a beautiful ring of coral lacing... chocolate, peat, and small hints of spice and hoppiness--small caramel and dankness inhabits its breath... a pleasure to sip, with its creamy introduction giving way to a stern backbone... medium-bodied, agreeable, and hearty... dry at its conclusion.... the chocolate and peat are at the forefront of its profile, while the roasted malts evoke caramel and coffee bean with subtlety and relative sweetness... the sum of its parts, this porter is strong but not bold, formidable yet not big, and drinkable without being thin... worthwhile and a good reason to purchase the mix pack it came in...

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Photo of smitbo7
4.11/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

One of my favorite porters to date. Dark chocolate appearance. Small head. Hints of caramel, cocoa, and malt. Hint of coffee char, bitter finish. Enjoyable cold weather porter.

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Photo of GuyFawkes
4.35/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Unknown vintage; drank 6/5/15 @ the Yarchives.

Murky orange/red rust appearance.

A rough pour yielded a small tan head; strong lace.

Raspberry, red licorice & fresh earth notes in the nose.

Medium thick mouthfeel.

Fresh earth & red licorice flavors up front; raspberry notes on the finish. Faint booze heat emerged as this warmed. A very flavorful porter; I'd have another!

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Photo of 911CROFT
3.55/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

355ml bottle into a Spiegleau Stout glass. Paid £2.70 for a single.

Pours a clear, dark brown, cola body, that when held to the light transforms to a bright, almost ruby hue. A three-finger in height, light tan coloured, bubbly head slowly condenses to a thick cap, leaving behind plenty of sticky soapy lace.

The relatively subtle nose predominantly consists of lightly roasted dark malts, semi-sweet chocolate, powdered cocoa and coffee. Hints of burnt grains, ash and woody, herbal hops are faintly perceptible in the background. Taste follows in much the same way, adding only a tart red berry profile to the relatively simple nose. Dry, dark roasted malts and baking chocolate lead initially above lighter notes of burnt grains, white toast and hints of heavily roasted coffee. Mid palate, lightly tart red berries join lingering chocolate malt to provide traces of sweetness and add further acidy to the sharp, dry roasted backbone. In the mouth, a light body and assertive carbonation give feel that despite being thin, remains reasonably smooth and easy drinking. Towards the back end, mildly bitter, green, herbal, and woody hop profiles join lingering berry, coffee, cocoa and char to finish dry, slightly coarse and astringent.

Overall this is a decent, but unremarkable beer. Smooth, dry and roasty, it’s a simple but well-crafted Porter. At a relatively high 6.8% ABV, alcohol is completely imperceptible. While this undoubtedly increases drinkability, it not only makes its depth of flavour and weight of body slightly lacking compared to others with similar gravities, but reduces its suitability as a session beer choice. Ultimately it’s a solid offering, but unlike Left Hand’s excellent Milk Stout Nitro, it isn’t going to become a fridge staple.

 1,776 characters

Photo of RonaldTheriot
3.59/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Left Hand's Black Jack Porter has a thin, bone-colored head, a very dark brown appearance, some bubble streams, and almost no lacing left behind. The aroma is of sweet, dark bread crust, toast, chocolate, and medium-roast coffee. Taste is of medium-dark malts, sweetness, low bitterness, brown bread crust, medium-dark toast, and no char. Mouthfeel is light, and Black Jack finishes on the drier side.


 407 characters

Photo of Nimbus_
3.63/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Look: Pours a dark cola color with ruby accents when held up to light. A thin tan head coats the top, though it dissipates quickly so only a very thin layer remains for the session. Somewhat underwhelming for a porter, in my opinion.

Smell: Unfortunately, the aroma is somewhat underwhelming as well. I get subtle hints of vanilla, cocoa, and coffee. I wish the aroma was a little stronger, because I'm sure it would be a great combination of scents for a brew like this.

Taste: This is where things get a bit better. Right away there is lots of sweet chocolate and a little bit of coffee. The finish has a nutty flavor to it, which is surprisingly pleasant. Delicious overall. While I really enjoy the taste of this beer, I would never know that I was drinking a porter. I don't mind though.

Feel: Pretty light and thin for a porter. The carbonation is very mild as well. It's quite session-able, which is nice, because I enjoy the flavor. However, as with the other aspects of this brew, the mouth-feel just doesn't represent a porter.

Overall: I like this beer, and I would buy it again. However, nothing about it makes it good porter specifically. I wish it was categorized as a different type of beer. That said, it is pretty tasty, and I still recommend it to folks who enjoy lighter porters or brown ales.

 1,336 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
2.91/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown and black for the most part, brown head, 1/2". Aroma has the roast and a dark fruit edge, are English porters just like the Russian Imperial Stout to the rest of that style? Dark fruit and alcohol.

Taste has plenty of woody licorice feels. So much hot alcohol in the mouthfeel. I wish the chocolate malt notes came out more than the yeast. Instead of a sweet edge I get a bitter alcohol boozy fueled one.

 430 characters

Photo of Vader444
3.43/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle pour into Left Hand 2/3 pint glass.

A muddy and frankly unappealing looking brown beer with short lived cream coloured head. Smells quite fruity and tastes good with gentle coffee and chocolate notes. Not my favourite Left Hand creation but, for some reason, I rather enjoyed the second half of this after initial disappointment. Too cold perhaps? Will try again but not in a big hurry. Cheers!

 403 characters

Photo of akolb
3.46/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Last beer in the 6 pack, dated 1/27/2017. Remind me not to buy LH beers close to the expiration date. With a vigorous pour a tan head is formed over a dark-red brown, slightly transparent body. Smells like coffee, cocoa, sweet caramel, and a bright herbal fruitiness that's a bit disconcerting against the other aromas. Taste has coffee and tasty rich chocolate. Nice. Then a bit of a medicinal quality that's not so nice. Bitterness is moderate. Body is weak for the style and ABV. Drinkable and has some nice elements, but there are far better porters out there.

 564 characters

Photo of oldn00b
3.95/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pretty standard porter but does lean to the sweet side. Definitely enough roasted malt to balance it out but it still skews a bit sweet for my taste. Body and feel are very nice - the nose on this is a nice standout.

 218 characters

Photo of RyanK252
3.84/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle poured into a BarrelHouse Brewing Co pint glass

A: Pours chestnut brown, not super dark, with a frothy tan head that settles to a light layer and leaves a little nice lacing.

S: Roasty toasty malt, cocoa powder, milk chocolate, slightly nutty, hint of espresso, and a little toffee sweetness.

T: Toasty roasty malt, milk chocolate, bready toffee sweetness, a bit nutty, and a mild herbal note on the finish.

M: Medium body, moderate carbonation.

O: Not exactly what I was expecting, but still a solid brew. Very easy drinking.

 539 characters

Photo of EmperorBevis
3.58/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a jet black body with off white head that gives way in parts but pretty much sticks
Good coffee regular aroma
Thinner than I imagined and not quite the dark beer stormer either some cocoa some wholemeal bread with the flavour
It's either thin or dangerously drinkable and I'm thinking thin
Kind of like Porter Lite :/

 335 characters

Photo of BWED
3.99/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a nonic.

A- Dark brown with a light tan head. Retains at a quarter inch. Good lacing.

S- Bready sweetness, roasty, a little nutty and chocolatey.

T- Sweet and nutty. Mild earth hop flavor. Base malt backbone is a little grainy and light.

M- Medium full body. Nice balance; just enough hop to cut the sweetness, which makes for a smooth clean finish.

O- Solid. This is a prime example of a porter. It doesn't blur that line with a stout. Lighter color, body, and flavor. Well done.

 514 characters

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.87/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A hellish night deserves a nice beer.

Pours from the bottle a hazelnut-cola color, forming into the tulip a muddy chocolate brown. I like my porters DARK, so this one isn't really earning points with me. The head is all but fleeting, forming a measely finger to start and gasping away to a thin ring.

A nice roasted malt aroma comes out, with total chocolate and a touch of sassafrass. I like the waves of chocolate.

Heavy handed malts lead to a rather metallic tails' side of the coin, the flavor tumbling around unstable proffering both flavors simultaneously. Faint whispers of baked brownie and vanillin/root beer finish off the flavor profile. Not impressive but drinkable enough to keep me going after it.

Feel is important and a good number here, providing apt carbonation and a slick, smooth finish. A taint semi-dryness dances on the palate with style.

Overall, this is one of the more mediocre porters I've had, but it's on the high side of that. It's drinkable, sessionable, easy, and simple. The metals throw it off for me a bit, but the brownie finish and cocoa dustings make it a formidable competitor.

 1,126 characters

Photo of happenstance
2.13/5  rDev -42.7%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

Weak tasting.

L: Translucent brown... Not really "black" at all (as the label advertises).

S: Smells like Goose Island IPA.

T: Way too much hops to be a porter. The hops taste overcomes anything that is supposed to suggest a porter.

F: Honestly, it felt like medicine in my mouth.

Very bad beer.

 306 characters

Photo of smcolw
3/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

No head, only a few bubbles near the rim. Oddly, there are a few spots on the glass. Dark amber color (light easily passes through the center of the glass.

Nearly no smell. I think I get some sugar but it is really too faint to tell.

The flavor is an improvement with some lightly toasted malt and modest hop bitterness. Very low carbonation and the body is thin enough to make the beer come across as watery. The aftertaste is short lived semisweet chocolate.

 464 characters

Photo of Slowjamcdub
2.82/5  rDev -24.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours cola brown with almost no head.

Not a lot going on with the nose. Some dark fruit. Hint of coffee.

Tastes mellow but good. Some coffee there. A little chocolate, some hops.
Good brew nothing is to over powering and in some cases like in this one, that's a good thing. Over all good brew. Sometimes less is more and in this case for sure

 347 characters

Photo of PA-hunter
3.54/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured 12oz bottle into snifter glass. 6.8% abv

Appearance- Pours a charcoal brown. Two finger head that dissipates fast. Opaque.

Smell- Roasted grains, carmamel. Some chocolate

Taste- Bready, roasted malt. Earthy flavor. Not heavy on the chocolate malt flavor but the expresso like flavor builds steady. The coffee bean taste lasts into the finish leaving a dry and bitter taste on the palate.

Mouthfeel- Medium in body, active carbonation.

Overall- Not bad. This one wasn't too impressive as it could have had a better malt profile. The expresso quality was bold and this is on the hoppy side for a porter which was interesting.

 635 characters

Photo of microbrewlover
4.46/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours a solid black with red highlights when held up to the light. There is a two finger mocha colored head which lasts for a while; some of it lasts until the end. Lots of lacing.

The smell is roasted malts, oats, chocolate, licorice, milk, fruits and nuts.

The taste follows the nose with roasted malts and oat sweetness coming in first. Then milk, light fruit, maybe pears, and some nuts. There is a hint of licorice as well. The feel is smooth and creamy; there is a little dryness on the backend but the cream remains after swallowing.

A good porter for sure.

 581 characters

Photo of brewskifan55
3.73/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Cola brown, opaque, with a tan half finger head that dissipates fast.

S: Dark chocolate, bready malts, espresso.

T: Chocolate slides in with a nice espresso finish. Sweet and robust. Light bitterness. Herbs on the finish.

M: Medium with medium, chewy mouthfeel.

O: A nice surprise. A decent porter. Would drink again.

 336 characters

Photo of gmoneyproductions
3.86/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

on tap pint glass
look is amber brown with a small off white head
smells fruity, nutty and chocolatey
taste is nutty fruity and chocolate
feel is light for a porter and easy to drink
overall solid porter
nice on a warm fall day

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Black Jack Porter from Left Hand Brewing Company
3.72 out of 5 based on 1,369 ratings.
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