Raven Mad Imperial Porter | BridgePort Brewing Co. / Brewpub

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Raven Mad Imperial PorterRaven Mad Imperial Porter
147 Ratings
Raven Mad Imperial PorterRaven Mad Imperial Porter

Brewed by:
BridgePort Brewing Co. / Brewpub
Oregon, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
70 IBU

Released Fall 2008.

Added by ccrida on 10-30-2008

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Ratings: 147 |  Reviews: 81
Photo of honkduh
4/5  rDev +9%

Photo of JethroAdam
3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 imperial porter, 7.8% abv, partially aged in pinot noir and bourbon barrels, 50 IBUs.

A- Rich dark brown, no real light going through it. Good head from appropriate carbonation that fades to a thin, persistent tan head around the edges.

Smell- I'll say this a lot but the beer really opens up as it warms. Wine is big in the aroma, smoky malt, a touch of oak and bourbon, all with chocolate in the background.

Taste- only gets better as it warms. Solid, not disappointing in any way. Wine up front gives it some acidity that fades to chocolate and oak.

Mouthfeel- medium bodied, you might expect more from an imperial beer but the texture borders on a pleasantly dry, almost powdery feel.

Overall- Probably past its prime but a great experience nonetheless. Very unique, not outstanding but a valiant effort. Not sure that all the flavors blend seamlessly but they provide an intriguing experience together. Cool packaging by the way, 3D glasses and all.

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Photo of philbertk
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Raven Mad Imperial Porter--Big Brews Series--2008 22 oz. Bottle. 7.80% ABV. 70 IBU's. (4.0 / 5.0) Thin fizzy mild lace coffee head. Clear dark bronze pour turns opaque dark black. Bottle Conditioned sediment dust. Burnt espresso mild cocoa tangy floral hop front. Crusty dry sweet burnt black bread mild sweet tangy coffee mild fruit rich Porter body. Tangy hop EtOH dry end. Sampled 6/2/2010. 2 @ $4.99.

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Photo of ElGordo
4.07/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the 22oz bottle into a Maudite snifter. Body is a deep dark brown with reddish highlights, topped by a smaller, creamy, tan head. Very nice, complex aroma of smoky dark malt, dark fruit, oak, pinot grapes, and a whiff of toffee.
Palate is similarly complex. Sweet, slightly smoky dark malt dominates up front. A touch of fruity hops comes through before the swallow, imparting just a touch of bitterness to balance out the malt. Tangy, acidic finish indicates it may have picked up a good bit of leftover wine from the pinot barrels.
Body is nicely carbonated, but a little bit thin for such a strong porter. This is unique enough to be a little offputting at first, but after a few sips becomes very inviting. An interesting, innovative beer from Bridgeport that has benefited from some time laying down in the cellar.

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Photo of htomsirveaux
3.97/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle tried 26 Jan 2010.

Comes with some red/blue 3D glasses for the 3D label...

Served in a 0.5 L Adambrau becker. Large lacy very dark brown head. Deep chocolate brown color, almost opaque. Smells perfumy, a bit soapy, maybe some coffee. Chocolatey, cola and sinnamon. Some floral perfume through the middle. Dark chocolate roastiness at the end. Lots of vanilla throughout. Moderate ethanol. Medium silky body.


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Photo of Derek
3.89/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Black with a tan head, thin ring of retention, light lacing.

S: Smoky, cola, coffee, dark chocolate, licorice. Awesome.

T: Licorice, coffee, smoky, spice, fruity, balanced bitterness.

M: Well-attenuated, creamy with a light acidity, drying finish.

D: A good drinker.

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Photo of kwjd
3.44/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A very dark brown colour with a small tight brown head. Smells a bit of chocolate and roast. Taste has a small amount of bitterness. The mouthfeel was a little bit too thin for my liking of the style. Very drinkable though.

I would have liked to have some 3D glasses to look at the bottle.

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Photo of Sammy
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sour aroma, great 3D picture and the glasses. Black body with a brown head. Above average mothfeel. Very drinkable, with a good token amount of smoke, rather than only roast.Nice porter.Subtle flavours from barrelling.A bit boozy, but oh my so drinkable.

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Photo of bcm119
3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Almost opaque brown,with a nice durable tan froth. Pinot noir barrels come through in the nose, along with some dark fruit and smoky roasted malt. Soft and lush on the palate. The barrel aging lends a pronounced red berry overtone to the roasted malt flavors. Chocolatey, earthy and roasty. Adequate hopping shows up toward the end with some leafy bitterness. Mouthfeel is fairly light for a strong porter, slightly creamy, with low carbonation. Finishes with some lingering toast and mild hop bitterness. Not a bad concoction, interesting wine barrel flavors and it avoids the heavy, under-attenuated trend in imperial porter/stout. A very nice drinking beer.

The bottle showed signs of cap sealing problems, which may explain the low carbonation in my bottle, and/or the off flavors/bad reviews here.

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Photo of iD9
2.33/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Served in a straight pint glass.

Appearance: Dark, you cannot see through this beer. Chestnut browns are evident on the very rim of the glass. Upon pouring a fuzzy, off-white head forms. The tannish foam dissipates rather quickly and the lacing doesn't adhere to the edges of the glass very well. I'm sharing this bottle with Wiseman Justin. His looks much much better than mine.

Smell: It has a spicy smell to it. Perhaps hints of licorice? Slightly stringent smell. This does not smell like a porter to me.

Taste: Ok, I think this beer is bad. Perhaps not the actual recipe itself but the bottle must have been left out in the sun. Much like the smell, the taste has a stringent quality to it. I don't get any of the typical chocolatey, roasty, malty flavors of a good porter from it. There is a slight bitterness on the back that may be from the hops or just my imagination. I don't know.

Mouthfeel: A fairly light body for a porter. It is relatively insubstantial. Not the worst mouthfeel in a beer I've had by far but weak in comparison with other porters.

Drinkablility: Again, as with the other categories this beer must be bad. I have no desire to continue drinking it and I hope this is due to poor storage since I love many of Bridgeport's products. Quiet simply put the combination of stringent smell, caustic taste and lack luster mouthfeel make this particular bottle undesirable.

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Photo of ThreeWiseMen
1.64/5  rDev -55.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Wiseman Justin Reporting:

Appearance: It's as black as a beer is going to get. Held to extreme angles against bright light you see a very dark brown. Conclusion: Opaque as shit. Head is very fine and dissipates quickly. Light tan; could be better. I'd say 4.25 but whatever right? If you swirl it like a glass of wine the head becomes darker and thicker.

Smell: I smell something really "unique." It reminds me of when I would have to help my parents change my siblings diapers. Not a used diaper, but the "new" diaper smell. I get no chocolate, coffee, or anything you would normally find in a porter. I would like to emphasize anything. This smells nothing like a porter. I can't name anything else in this smell. Smell 2.5

Taste: This beer is terrible. It taste like I drank highlighters or something else extremely chemical. It's awful. Taste: 1.0

Mouthfeel: I want to pour the rest of the beer down the sink due to how bad it taste. But I fight on for beeradvocate. If you ignore the taste that reminds me of something I'd drink in hell... it's 'mouthfeel' isn't all that bad I guess. Unless by "mouthfeel" you mean how it makes my mouth...feel (It makes me wish I'd never found beer)

Drinkability: This is a beer that I would give to minors to teach them that underage drinking is bad. This beer does not taste skunked it's much worse than that. I hope that I have a bad beer and if this beer was skunked then I'll re-review it.

I notice my reviews are much different than other people. Until I verify this with a second beer I would assume that I had gotten a terribly skunked beer. This beer as it stands now is one of the few beers that I want to pour down the sink

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Photo of gford217
3.76/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber acquired quite a while back, even comes with some nifty 3-D glasses.

Pours a nice deep chocolate brown that's very close to black with a thick tan head that recedes to a collar leaving some nice lacing along the sides.

The aroma is interesting as it's got lots of dark malts and chocolate but there I definitely get the pinot noir character in the nose with a light wine-like tart fruitiness. Not much bourbon that I can gather.

The taste is dry and chocolaty with lots of cocoa character and a hefty toasted black malt backbone. There is still a bit of the tart fruit in the finish, though it's less prevalent than the nose.

The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied as imperial stouts go, though it's probably OK for a standard porter. The wine-barrel character lends an interesting dryness to the mouthfeel.

I'll salute BridgePort for the creativity of aging a porter in pinot barrels which lends an interesting feel to the beer. I don't think the underlying porter is quite hefty enough though, at least not to be considered an "imperial".

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Photo of ckeegan04
3.63/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

First, a beer that comes with 3D glasses has to be pretty cool, right?

A - Pours a near pitch black with the faintest of dark brown comng through around the edges. SOlid two finger brown head fades to about a 1/2 inch cap. Excelletn lacing left behind.

S - Roasted nuttiness and alot of dark fruit. Hints of red wine come through initially and as the beer warms a touch of oaky whiskey comes through. A little boozy in the nose as well.

T - Roasted malt and a rather strong whiskey taste. Light fruitiness underneath with dark fruit flavors dominating. Hints of bitter chocolate as well. Alcoholis noticeable but not overwhelming.

M/D - On the thin side and a touch too much carbonation. The flavors meld well and make for a good porter, but certainly nothing great.

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Photo of Docer
3.95/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Finally tried a bomber of this after reading Jeff Alworths comments about it on the beervana blog... I always try Bridgeports stuff.. but the 3D glasses threw me off...

- Nice rich cloudy color.. poured slightly thick, with a nice tan head that was creamy.

- Nice vanilla and oak-like scent with some fantastic ester-wine notes and chocolate malt... nice bitterness too...

- Huge wine barrel flavor but at the same time well balanced with some great vanilla bourbon oak essence mixed with a rather basic and mild porter which is actually refreshing for a change. A nice standard.

- Nice bitterness.. slightly dry, but robust with ester and barrel.... so overall very good.

- Great drinkability but wouldn't recommend even having the whole bottle for one.. but one to share... rather strong on the gut, but still light on alcohol.

On another note aside from judging, the price was great for this, and certainly one I would buy again and again. Must have!

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.63/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black Forest Cake black with slim highlights of burnt orange. A substantial slab of coffee mousse colored foam looked good after the pour and looks even better once it starts to melt. Shredded sheets of sudsy lace look fine as well, especially since barrel-aged ales usually leave a fairly clean glass.

A portion of this beer was aged in Jack Daniels barrels and a portion in Pinot Noir barrels. Unfortunately, neither of those is appreciated in the nose (note: subsequent sniffs give off a faint hint of the whiskey). The usual aromas of dark chocolate and black coffee dominate. More power would have been nice.

It's hard to think of a 7.8% <anything> as being Imperial. The beer doesn't taste big and bold, it tastes like a standard American porter that has a mild-moderate amount of barrel-aged character. If you're looking to be hit over the head with shovelfuls of malt, a fifth of whiskey and a flagon of wine, drink something else.

Raven Mad is too tame to stand out from the crowd. It doesn't have quite enough malty guts and it's a little too tangy. More malt sugars... or more hops... or more whiskey (J.D. isn't bourbon)... or more Pinot Noir wouldn't have allowed the tart fruitiness to flourish to such an extent. This isn't bad beer, it just lacks coherence and a flavor hook.

The mouthfeel is acceptable at the start, then wanders away too quickly on the finish. At the risk of beating a dead horse, more malt sugars would have shored up the bottom end and would have resulted in more 'hang on' on the back end. Bubbles are on the scarce side, which is fine by me.

Raven Mad Imperial Porter sounds better on paper than it tastes. If you're looking to dip a toe into the barrel-aged porter and stout style, this would be a pretty good place to start. If you no longer need training wheels, set your sights higher. Now why didn't I get the 3-D glasses that are supposed to come with each bomber?

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Photo of Wasatch
3.98/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz. Bomber
With some 3D Glasses, LOL
Red Foil

Poured into a chalice a very nice black color, nice carbonation, very nice looking creamy one-finger plus tan head, with some very nice sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with some nice malt/toffee/chocolate notes. The taste is malty, sweet, with some toffee/chocolate. Medium body. Drinkable, this is a pretty tasty brew from Bridgeport, recommended.

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Photo of Onenote81
3.29/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beautiful little extra received from JohnGalt1 in a recent trade. Thanks, Toby!

Pours a deep black with hints of ruby on the edges. Big frothy tan head on top that retains wonderfully, leaving gorgeous webbing and lacing all over the glass. Smells of cocoa, coffee, bread, and leather...all there, just not bold.

Mouthfeel is creamy smooth. Dries the mouth a bit on the finish. Not bad for a big Porter. Flavor is of black coffee, fresh bread, licorice, and slight black tea finish. I feel dried out a bit when I drink this one. This is pretty good all around though. I'd have it again.

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Photo of rye726
3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with a thin tan head. Nose has a nice vinous oak presence along with roasty malts and subtle hops. Taste is average at best. Mostly dry roasted malts. Not much of a barrel presence. Body is a bit thin. Not a bad porter, just nothing special.

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Photo of rhinos00
3.65/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasting with rye726 and ratman197. Beer #4 of 8. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a New Belgium snifter.

A- Dark black with a thin white head. Quickly dissipated and reduced to a thin ring around the glass.

S- Mostly got some coffee beans and some oak. There was a little bit of roasted character as well. The aromas were just way too subtle for me. Nothing really stood out.

T- Oak up front. Also some sweetness from caramel malts accompanied by a little bit of roasted coffee beans. The finish had a slight vinous quality.

M- Medium bodied with plenty of carbonation.

D- Drinks pretty well. Had no problem putting this one down.

Overall, it wasn't so much that there was something that was wrong with the beer, but more that there really wasn't anything in this beer that appealed to me. I appreciate the attempt at complexity, but the flavors just weren't meshing quite to my liking.

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Photo of cbros
3.68/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving type- A 22 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass.

A- Pours black with a one finger tan lace. There seems to be a nice cling to the glass. I don't see any carbonation after the pour.

S- I smell hints of roasted malts with a sense of chocolate.

T- I get flavors of malt and a hint of some fruity flavor. There is a bitter presence to this beer from start to finish. Little bit of a weird flavor combination. Mellow yet bitter.

Recieved this as an extra in a trade with madhombrewer. I hsave had other BridgePort offerings(the IPA and Stout) but this is an offering in a reserve type series for them. A decent brew that I liked but not something that I would get again. Thanks madhombrewer.

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Photo of meatyard
3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours out a very dark brown with a tan head that falls to a, mostly, covering leaving small bits of lacing.
The smell is roasted malt, a little coffee and some cola & vanilla.
The taste is burnt coffee, some alcohol, tannin and a bit of bitterness/astringency in the end.
Mouthfeel is thin and carbonation is low.
Drinkability is pretty decent.

The blended porters makes for an interesting, if subtle, beer. It's definitely worth trying. Not one of my top 5 porters but it is a curiously tasting one.

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Photo of jsapunor
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark brown into a nonic tumbler. Good retention of the tan colored head.

The aroma is roasty, slightly burnt coffee.

The taste is coffee, burnt malt with sweetness. The sweetness is very noticable but doesn't overpower the other flavors. The whole effect is very nice. The body is a little thinner than I expected. Low carbonation and not much alcohol warmth.

It has a great label and the 3-D glasses are a nice gimmick.

This is a nice porter although not as strong in flavor, mouthfeel or alcohol as other Imperials. It's definitely on the sweet side and is very smooth and easy to drink

Overall, a very good porter that I enjoyed and would drink again.

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Photo of SurlyDuff
3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Okay, so although I am intriqued by the 3D label and glasses that come with this beer, the novelty of silly marketing doesn't usually win me over, sometimes does the opposite...repelling me from a beer. This one does have a nice foil wrapping though, which marketing or no, is a nice touch that I appriciate them taking the extra time/money to do.

Label lists random percentages of what was aged in what.

Deep black with a tan head.

Smells of sweet cereal grains, grape nuts, burnt espresso and chocolate. Some vanilla in here too.

Slightly harsh at first, slight soggy wood and some nutty chocolate. It immediatly sweetens up to almost cloying levels, huge malt bill in here, almost too sweet. Candy and molassass sugar. Not getting much oak/bourbon/aged characteristics, this beer tastes young, perhaps it needed more time in the barrels. It's got a sticky mouthfeel and aftertaste, and isn't very drinkable because of this.

The ABV is kind of low for an impy porter, as is the flavor profile. It's just a regular american porter to me, nowhere comparing to beers like backbutte xx, alpha klaus, top sail, etc...which to me are real imperial porters.

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Photo of pokesbeerdude
3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Extra special thanks to JohnGalt1 for this one as an extra in a trade! An EXTRA!!! Awesome man, awesome!
22oz Bomber, awesome 3D label.

A: Extremely dark brown, almost black with a tan head, about half an inch that reduced to about a quarter. Head is very dense, almost nitro like in appearance, dense bubbles and big sticky clumps of lacing. Oh yeah. This looks tasty.

S: Smoke and roastiness, cocoa, booze, chocolate, and a few hints of burnt coffee. Smells tasty, and spot on for the style.

T: Wow, not nearly as intense as I had planned on, black patent malt really shines through, and a lot of alcohol heat. Big time hop bitterness at the end, quite citrusy, smoke and roasted coffee are also quite present. Sadly the cocoa and chocolate that is in the nose doesn't show up in the mouth, and that is sad.

M: Really thin, even for a standard porter, fair amount of booze heat, and really dry. Kind of a letdown here.

D: For what it is, it is a tasty beer, even if it is lacking a few things. I could probably drink another bomber, especially if sharing it with someone. There are some good things going on here, but it is lacking a little bit in the mouth.

Thanks Toby, this is a solid beer!

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Photo of bkilpatr
4/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a tulip glass. 03/04/09. Bottle has a cool 3D label. According to the label, this is 59% porter, 8% porter aged in oak bourbon barrels, and 33% porter aged in oak wine barrels.

Pours a deep dark black color with a finger of dense chocolaty brown head. The head slowly dropped to a thin layer with decent retention and lacing. The aroma is very interesting. There's chocolate, roasted malt, subtle bourbon and vanilla, and a fruity red wine aroma. Smells pretty good!

The taste is also interesting. Up front there is a lot of sweet chocolate and roasted flavor. Next comes bourbon and vanilla with slight caramel mixed in. This is all followed by a strong red-wine and oak presence. Complex and interesting, very tasty. The finish has a strong vanilla sweetness to it though, almost cloying.

Feel is medium-full bodied and carbonation is just a spot low. It's sticky and slightly chewy, and a bit thin at the same time. Drinkability is decent for a big beer. The alcohol is nicely hidden, but the feel and sweet finish detract from this. One bottle is plenty enough for me.

Overall, a very interesting beer. The barrel aging adds complexities to the aroma and taste. If you're a fan of big porters or barrel aged beers, give this one a shot.

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Raven Mad Imperial Porter from BridgePort Brewing Co. / Brewpub
Beer rating: 3.67 out of 5 with 147 ratings
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