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Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter) | Left Hand Brewing Company

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Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter)Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter)
359 Ratings
Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter)Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter)

Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: Baltic Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Rayek on 11-15-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 359 |  Reviews: 242
Photo of ADTaber
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of pathman
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of hozersr
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of bluejacket74
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, bottled on 12/7/2010. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours dark brown/black with about an inch and a half tan head after an aggressive pour. Head retention and lacing are both good. Aroma is smoked and roasted malt and some chocolate. The brew tastes like smoked malt, dark chocolate, roasted malt and a bit of coffee. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's creamy and a bit slick. Drinkability is good, it's smooth and goes down easy. I think it's a good overall brew, not a bad choice at all!

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Photo of harpus
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.76/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into Staghorn Beer Stien.

Appearance: Black Oil slick just got poured into a glass. Aggressive pour yields almost 2 fingers of tanish brown colored creamy head. Decent lacing.

Smell: moderate smell of smoke. Chocolates and malty.

Taste: Heavy smoke right away that malty sweetness takes away as fast as it showed up. Dry and bitter chocolate in the middle and then just a bit more smoke flavor, this time the smoke tastes sweeter. Slight taste of charred oak and some vanilla hidden in the background, not very pronounced at any time throught entire beer, but still reminding you its there.

Mouthfeel: my favorite part of this beer. Silky and creamy, i think this is what brings the whole beer together and it surprised me a bit!

Drinkability: good drinkability for a porter. The smoke is not overdone at anytime, its probably the best smoked porter that i have had since New Glarus Unplugged Smoke on the Porter. I did not think anything would compare.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A thin mocha colored cap sits atop a near ink black body. Head doesn't stay around too long, but does leave a thin collar and rings of lace.

A tasty little aroma here. Cocoa powder, smoked malt, and lightly roasted coffee beans. Often, the smokiness in smoked beers is too intense and detracts from the overall experience. However, Left Hand has done a nice job of blending everything together.

The flavor pretty much follows the nose. Mild roast with cocoa powder, bitter coffee and a mellow smokiness. Everything plays well together. A unique take on a baltic porter that definitely makes it stick out in the style for me.

Smooth and creamy, medium bodied, carbonation is perfect. I served this chilled a little below room temp and it was perfect.

There was nothing that detracted from the drinkability of this beer for me. The alcohol was held in check, very good mouthfeel, flavors worked very well together.

This definitely isn't the best one of the style I have ever had, but it stands out. The layer of smoke is a welcome addition. This is definitely a beer I would seek out again.

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Photo of n2185
3.63/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours black with a finger of dark tan head which recedes into a thin ring with a little lacing.

S: Smoky roasted malts followed by some semi-sweet chocolate. The smokiness dominates the aroma, though the sweet chocolate manages to peek through some.

T: Thankfully the smoke is a bit more balanced here than in the aroma. The smoke hits first, but is followed by a slightly sweet and creamy chocolate flavor. The smoke returns on the finish along with a light, charred bitterness.

M: Medium-thick body with light carbonation, this beer is fairly creamy.

O: Overall, a pretty decent beer. It's a bit one-dimensional with the smoke overwhelming any subtleties that might be found, but is still good for what it is.

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Photo of barczar
4.07/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque deep brown with a frothy mocha head that lingers.

Aroma is slightly smoky, with deep notes of cocoa dominating. There's a hint of dark fruit and soy.

Flavor follows suit, with dark chocolate malt forming the backbone of the profile, finishing roasty with a hint of coffee. Cocoa is rich. There's a touch of dark cherry tang. Smoke is subtle and adds nice complexity, reminiscent of peat in a scotch ale.

Body is fairly full and smooth, with minimal carbonation and light alcohol warmth.

Didn't get to try this one fresh, but it's holding up amazingly well. Might be the perfect time to drink it, as the smoke is subdued.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.42/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle served in a standard pint glass. Bottled on 12/21/10 indicated on the bottle. Pours an inky black with a quarter inch, mocha-colored head that quickly dissipates and disperses towards the edges. Some specks and strands of lacing revealed during the tasting. Fantastic nose - bold dark fruit gradually gives way to a roasted coffee quality with a suggestion of cocoa. Taste consistent with nose; however, a smoky quality pleasantly permeates the flavor profile, bringing the coffee and roasted character to the foreground, with the dark fruit lingering lightly in the back. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a lively carbonation that leaves a light residual burn at the back of the throat. This is a fantastic Baltic Porter - great flavor and complexity. One of my favorites by far. I'm going to have to obtain more of this before it goes away. Too bad this isn't part of Left Hand's regular line-up because it is quite exceptional.

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Photo of barnzy78
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of cosmicevan
4.44/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

big thanks to cfh64 for sending me an amazing surprise thank you box that included this!

a - opened the bottle and filled my CCB snifter. black hole with some liquid shine. thin bubbled head that bubbled away quick. has a bit of a brownish tint to it.

s - very nice. chocolate roastiness. all malt. wonderful smelling porter.

t - even roastier than the nose. again, chocolate...burnt wood...and a malt party.

m - standard porter tingle. much smoother than i'd normally expect.

o - overall, this is an excellent beer. really fine example of a robust porter with wonderful bold flavors. very excellent.

 605 characters

Photo of Hellpop65
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of champ103
3.65/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours an ink black color, nearly opaque. A small, bubbly, tan head rises to a finger. The foam recedes in a second with light lace.
S: Big roasted malt up front. Slight acrid and astringent coffee. Plenty of meaty smoke as well.
T: Follows the nose. Big roasted malt and coffee. Big meaty smoke flavors as well.
M/D: A medium to full body. Good carbonation, and silky smooth. Easy to drink. The bottle is gone in no time.

I am enjoying this, though the smoke is strong, and I am really not a big fan of smoky beers like this. The beer succeeds as a smoked beer for sure, and will be a huge hit with any smoke head. Well done Left Hand, even though it is not among my favorite style.

 686 characters

Photo of Bung
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. Fairly black pour with just some brown around the edges. Thin layer of light tan on top.

Aroma, a good dose of roastiness. Smoked peak, malt, coffee. Dark chocolate.

Not getting the overwhelming smoke others get. Just a nice accent on the roast giving this more coffee than peat, earth and chocolate. A less sweet, more roasty baltic. There is some dark chocolate and cocoa that comes with the roast and smoke in the finish.

Medium bodied, and coating. Carbonation is all right, could be a little less to make it more creamy and less harsh.

No complaints with this for me, especially for 9.99 a sixer. This style has definetely creeped into 2nd on my favorites list.

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Photo of drpimento
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Excellent beer! Served with a thick, creamy, fine, light tan head and good lacing. Color is an opaque brown black. Aroma is malt, toffee, roasty, toasty, fire pit. Flavor is a sweet porter with excellent smoke balance. Body is good and carbonation is just a tad light. Finish is like flavor and has good length and balance throuhout. Session beer.

 347 characters

Photo of jera1350
4.35/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pure black with a thin, yet creamy brown head that leaves some nice lacing.

Deeply roasted malt with a dry charcoal smell. Little to no sweetness present with plenty of smoking wood as well. Can't wait to dig in!

Wow, is this spot on for a smoked beer. Plenty of roasty malts abound, but the smoked malt is the highlight. Big smokey campfire taste that lingers well into the finish. Hints of bacon, espresso bean and caramelized sugar are also present. An early Christmas gift for the palate!

Big, creamy and oily smooth. This feels how a good imperial stout should.

Absolutely loving every bit of this. This beer is a homerun especially in the flavor department. Quite possibly the best baltic/smoked porter I have ever had. I could easily enjoy a couple of these and look forward to the next one already. Go out and get this one!

 835 characters

Photo of claspada
3.84/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

IMPORTANT: This is classified as a Smoked Baltic Porter, and for the record I HATE smoked beers, but I really enjoyed this, because it was barely smokey. On to my notes:
Aromas are initially roasted malts highlighted with dark chocolate and espresso notes; mild charred maltiness.
The tastes somewhat follow the nose but are less astringent. Initially you are presented with cocoa powder flavors that flip flop between sweet and mildly bitter. A strong full caramel malt presence continues to represent throughout but is never the dominant contributor; full mouthfeel as well that lingers pleasantly on the palate. Dark/milk chocolate are the main contributors here with underlying charred and espresso malts.
Overall this is a great showing from Left Hand, especially due to the fact that it is available in 6 packs, what a treat.

 832 characters

Photo of mrfrancis
4/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of glid02
4.05/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Porter Beer Bar in Atlanta.

Pours black with a one-finger tan head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of heavy roasted malts with good amounts of semi-sweet chocolate. Moderate amounts of smokiness waft in and out, intensifying as the beer warms. Hints of earthy hop aromas come into play as the beer warms as well.

Tastes very similar to how it smells. Robust roasted malt flavors with slightly sweet dark chocolate flavors kick things off. Joining in shortly thereafter are smooth smoked malt flavors, more earthy than leather-like or meaty. Slight leafy hop flavors make an appearance before fading out into a moderately bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a smooth thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall I was expecting a little more of this beer after last year's inaugural success but I was slightly disappointed. A solid beer but nothing special.

 1,015 characters

Photo of Daniellobo
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice smoked porter, subtle but with a nice long range.

Presentation: 12 oz brown capped bottle. Black and white label with an elaborate line illustration, almost a pattern-like range akin to some tattoo styles. Neck label notes style alongside brewery branding . Side narrative explains the charity memorial effort celebrated by the brew, and offers a brief description. Notes generic list of ingredients, and an empty bottled date section. Served in a snifter.

A - Black pour with deep brown edges, short frothy head with small retention, faint surface memory save a thin surface ring and some splashes of lacing.

S - Sweet nose with a smoked hint. Malty, lactose dash, sweet malt... Smoked note... Subtle but nice.

T - Taste is longer and shows off its range with dexterity. Long roasted notes, sweet malt with a milky hint, coffee and chocolate rather gently with a nice soft smoked layer covering it all with a bitter insinuation.

M - Medium/full body with a creamy sense, feeling more full in the finish.

O - All flows rather beautifully together. Subtle but quite a nicely woven smoked porter.

Notes: Among the best, if not the best, offerings I've been lucky to try from Left Hand. Thanks Alberto for the treat!

 1,226 characters

Photo of ccrida
4.3/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Edit to the review below - the next day, I had another pint, after some IPAs, and it tasted quite a bit smokier, meatier. Good, just way a different. Confirmed to the be the same keg. Two different experiences really, both equally good. Smoke vs Malt.

On draught at the Collins Pub, Fade To Black v2 is black with a tan head that leaves scattered lace.

Smell is coffee like, some coco powder as well. As it warmed, the smoke finally peeked though.

Taste is pretty good, a robust dark malts but balanced and not overly sweet. Not getting much smoke, even after it bloomed on the nose, just a whisper, which suits me fine.

Mouthfeel was smooth, medium heavy bodied.

Drinkability was pretty good. I haven't had any of there beers since a CO visit at years ago, at which time I was unimpressed and thought they were unbalanced and generally hot. This beer was none of those thing, and was a really balanced, restrained example of the style.

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4.25/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.01/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Sprecher nonic.
Bottled on 11 29 10, no info available.

Thanks to Beerwolf77 for never letting me leave his house with either an empty hand or stomach.

A - I wouldn't say "Fade" to black as it pours pretty black already. Then again, as the firm, large tan head cascades up, I suppose it does fade. Slivers of clarity show through the beer but it's pretty hard to see through the incredibly dense lace.

S - Delicious notes of dark chocolate chink and fudge blend well with black silk coffee and undertones of molasses. Heavily roasted malt is all over here but it isn't bitter smelling. Very faint smoke.

T - Heavily roasted malts are potent, yet...bland and one-dimensional at the same time. Chocolaty with a faint smoke finish. While one-dimensional, it still tastes good.

M - Incredibly rich and thick, Fade to Black Vol. 2 is silky smooth with low carbonation but it doesn't feel flat at all. Soft dry bitterness on the finish.

D - You better believe I listened to Fade to Black by Metallica while reviewing this! Despite it's thick, heavy nature, it's still fairly drinkable. This beer feels much more like a traditional American stout as opposed to a Baltic Porter though. I also can't help but notice there are two Volumes of Fade to Black much in the same way the song can be broken down into two distinct parts.

 1,352 characters

Photo of KarlHungus
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours an opaque black color. The head is one inch in height, and recedes rather quickly into a thin cap of lacing. The aroma is camp fire smoke, roasted malt, and a hint of bacon. The taste is of bacon, chocolate, and smoke. I'm really digging the taste of this beer. The aftertaste lingers beautifully, and screams drink more of me. The mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation, and a velvety texture. Overall, this is a really good beer that I will drink a bunch of until it is gone. Kudos to Left Hand for hitting another one out of the park with their Fade to Black series.

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Fade To Black (Volume 2 - Smoked Baltic Porter) from Left Hand Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.03 out of 5 with 359 ratings
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