Shade Grown Coffee Porter | Real Ale Brewing Company

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Shade Grown Coffee PorterShade Grown Coffee Porter

Brewed by:
Real Ale Brewing Company
Texas, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.30%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by assurbanipaul on 12-07-2003

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Reviews: 196 | Ratings: 357
Photo of Marty30
3.82/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to dajtai007 for this extra! Poured at 55 degrees into a pint glass.Excited to try this.

A. When held up to the light body shows a clear dark brown with plenty of carbonation. A one inch fizzy head dissapates rather quickly and leaves barely any lacing.

S. Coffee grinds are the first thing that comes to the nose followed by milk chocolate and roasted malt.

T. Pretty much the same as the smell, coffee comes first but it isnt very dominant as I expected it would, but very nice, I get alot of milk chocolate some caramel in the the back. some earthy notes in there as well.

M. Nice medium mouth that coats the pallet pretty nice,alot of carbonation in this one.

D. I could drink a sixer of this no problem. I don't detect any alchohol and its a very tastey brew that I would reccomend to anyone who likes coffee in there beer.

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Photo of SkipWeathers
2.56/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A - kind of a ruby brown, little fizz

S - minimal aroma; no real smell at all

T - slight roast flavor, maybe some weak coffee, not much else

M - thin, weak, dissipating quickly, not much here

D - would not be hard to drink several of these, as long as you like weak porters.

A weak offering from Real Ale. I love their Devil's Backbone (my quaff of the Summer of '10), but this is not so good. I was hoping for some bold flavors here but none found. Was similar to Pipeline Porter. I had high hopes for it but it was disappointing too.

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Photo of tempest
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a bottle at Jo's Coffee in Austin. While I liked the balance of coffee and roasted malts, this drank more like a brown porter. There's a mild, but not too bitter coffee flavor. It tasted like a very light roast and was quite drinkable, but you'd expect a richer beer for a coffee porter. Give it a try, it's certainly a new take on the sub-style.

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Photo of BrewsCrewSA
4.48/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Real Ale's first mass-marketed release, circa mid-to-late 2009.

A - Pours dark, opaque, not a speck of light shines through. Extremely brown, almost black, with a tan head fizz that dissipates abruptly. No lacing throughout, but still appears as inviting as when it's first poured. Overall, a beautiful color for this beer.

S - Smells of toffee, Heath bars, candy sugar, with a faint freshly-baked bread profile in the background. Does not give off a strong coffee aroma as one would imagine.

T - Huge malty layers of chocolate and coffee. Alcohol present throughout, but not syrupy. Excellently balanced. No suggestions of hops whatsoever. Toasted biscuits and bready malts toward the finish. Great coating of alcohol that blends extremely well with the coffee overtones. Sweet but not overly so; actually, just the right amount of what appears to be candy sugar, maybe added late to the brewing.

M - Excellent. Sits well against the palate, not overpowering or overwhelming. Goes down extremely smooth.

D - Likely pairs well with dessert. Maybe a bit strong for sessions, but one or two at a time wouldn't hurt. An excellent effort overall by Real Ale.

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Photo of stephens101
3.72/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A bubbly and active tan head sits large atop this black brew; but size does not equate to longevity. Big notes of coffee roll out of the glass during the pour. There's some brown at the very edges when held to light. Some stringy lines of lace stick randomly.

To the nose and we get creamy espresso with an afterthought of roasted coffee beans and a nice vein of dark chocolate. Taste isn't as bold as the aroma, but involves sweet malts, more roasted coffee beans, vanilla, some cocoa, and a substantial and welcomed hop woodiness. Creamy and satisfying, although a little thin for the style. A bit of alcohol swirls around in the back.

A nice little change of pace from one of my favorite Texas breweries.

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Photo of mgbickel
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this bottle as a bonus from optimator13...thanks Evan!

Aggressive pour into a Duvel tulip yielded a solid finger of sandstone head. The foam quickly dissipated leaving tiny swirls on top of the chestnut brown body.

The nose has lots of roasted malts and ground coffee up front. Hints of chocolate and grains sit subtly in the background.

As the nose indicates, the coffee and roasted flavors dominate. The same flavor pretty much lingers throughout the drink...good, but not complex.

The body is on the light side of medium with mild to moderate carbonation.

You will have no problem throwing down a few of these bad boys. Tasty and easy to drink...a great after dinner beer!

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Photo of augustgarage
3.8/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to lnashsig for nailing another one of my long-time wants. I was going to save this for breakfast, but the aroma of bacon (I'm making Spaghetti Carbonara) and the best by date of 2/18/2011 (tomorrow) overwhelmed me.

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Very dark but essentially clear auburn liquid with light-brown highlights when held to a strong light. A smattering of light khaki suds grace the top, but recede fairly quickly to a lasting collar and a burbling slick fed by the steady upthrust of carbonation. Fine fluid lacing, no legs.

Very delicate aromatics - the perfect mix of roast malt and roast coffee, such that I can no longer distinguish which is which. Very little else going on in the nose though, and these notes are restrained. When the beer warms, this doesn't improve.

Malty, chocolate-tinged palate entry, soft without a hint of astringency from roast. Hints of vanilla. Though it lacks a lactic note, there is something about this that reminds me almost of a milk stout more than a porter. Mild grassy hops deliver a modest bitterness which dries out the bready dainty finish. The coffee used seems like a very mild blend and is more earthy than fruity in nature. Well balanced and tasty beer, though lacking the intensity of many other coffee beers I've sampled which holds back the rating just a bit here for me...

Medium-bodied, moderately carbonated, smooth and velvety.

Big time drinkability though the base flavors are disappointingly muted. More a session ale than a sipper, curious how this would hold up on cask.

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Photo of ColdPoncho
4.08/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Thanks tsatem for this bottle.

Drink by date: 04/05/2011

A - pours a light translucent brown into a dark impenetrable body with minimal off-white head.

S - Coffee, fresh cut grass, roasted malts.

T - Really nice balance of coffee and malt, with a touch of sweetness. This is actually very good! Great balance, and good complexity throughout.

M - Thin body, light. A bit small for a porter, methinks.

D - Very enjoyable beer, highly drinkable. And not heavy.

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Photo of bens0n
4.12/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a very dark brown, close to opaque but not quite, with a small amount of foamy off-white head that dissipates rather quickly, but leaves a tiny amount of lacing behind.

On the nose I can pick up on sweet malts, and delicate hints of roasted coffee and vanilla.

Flavor wise its very similar, I would say its on the sweet side, the coffee is really not very prevalent in the flavor, I get more vanilla. Very rich, but not overpowering. Not as roasty as I was expecting though.

This beer is pretty thick and has a nice level of carbonation, very very drinkable. Not extremely filling, but very satisfying.

Side note: Reminds me alot of southern star buried hatchet stout, but much more toned down.

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Photo of amcmaho1
4.08/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

vintage 10' bottle brought back from Dallas
bottle states "best by 01.20.11"
poured into "Darkness" snifer

Appearance: Great classic porter coloration, dark, letting virtually no light through. Pours with a big head which slowly dissipates, though there is some nice lacing.

Smell: Where freshness may be an issue here, i am getting only a little bit of coffee on the nose. Granted what's there smells great, and is assimilated in the beer nicely. Along with that there is some milk chocolate, bitter cocoa, rich malt, and low hop aroma. I would love to have this beer very fresh to see how big the coffee profile is supposed to be. It seems subdued now, but still a nice asset to the more traditional porter flavors.

Taste: Initially there is the coffee taste, more in the aftertaste than anywhere else. I get a very slight metallic taste along with some small hop bitterness, but mostly coffee, and roasted malt flavors. Where the coffee was lacking on the nose, it seems to be stronger in the taste, along with some definite chocolate tinges.

Mouthfeel: Very thin for a porter; certainly not the slightest bit viscous. The carbonation level is decent, and i think that it's a very balanced coffee porter: no cloying sweetness, nor overly bitter coffee flavors.

Drinkability: Very drinkable, although something which should probably be enjoyed very fresh. It's an easy drinker with nice hints of chocolate and undertones of chocolate, all with a light ABV. I'll certainly drink this again, given the opportunity.

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Photo of JMad
4.07/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a glass mug...

The beer is dark brown with a tight bubbly tan colored head.

I smelled dark and milk chocolate along with roasted coffee beans.

It tasted of toasted caramel malt, coffee, and had a nice lingering bitterness.

The mouthfeel was smooth with a medium body, with a dry finish.

This beer smells great and tastes good, better to drink this one early in the evening.

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Photo of mountsnow1010
3.82/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown with a tan fluffy head that recedes quickly leaving behind a fair amount of lacing.
Smells like coffee but with earthy undertones that I have found in most porters. I could be walking through a forest with coffee trees around me.
Tastes like coffee with a bit of earthy roasty malts. The coffee flavor isn't quite as strong as I've experienced in the past with other coffee based beers but it's still nice.
MF - Surprisingly light, thinner than I was expecting. Drys the mouth out a bit too.
DB - This is the most drinkable coffee based beer that I have had thus far, mainly due to MF and ABV.

Not a bad brew but pretty thin bodied, and a bit of a watery taste.

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Photo of jmbranum
4.87/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a few days ago from Central Market in Austin, Texas. Being drunk tonight (poured into a wine glass) where I'm staying tonight in Killeen.

Rich roasted coffee and chocolate aroma. Pours almost black into the glass, held up to the light it is a glowing mahogany brown.

Flavor is intense. Coffee and bittersweet chocolate dominate. Reminds me of a black iced coffee with a shot of espresso but richer and has that nice beery texture in the mouth. Some hops in the background but they are slight. Definitely can pick up some vanilla and again more dark chocolate.

Mouthfeel is unbelievable. Drinkability? Well I wouldn't call it a session beer. Meant to be slowly. I should add I think the ABV is off. I think the alcohol is higher 6.3 ABV.

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Photo of thenewflesh
3.52/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Pours dark black with a medium head that fades within minutes, leaving very little lacing. Thought it'd be a little thicker.

S: Smells very faintly of coffee, not quite enough for my taste.

T: Hits the tongue with an underwhelming light taste, since I was expecting a harder hitting porter, maybe because of how dark it is. The flavor is there though, coming through with a sour hazelnut taste.

M: Thinner than i expected, but still not bad. Carbonation is at a good level here.

D: Very drinkable. Even though I was hoping for a slightly stronger porter that would accommodate the blistering cold, I'm still glad i picked up this brew.

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Photo of obrike
3.65/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Label says best by 4/5/11...assuming this is a fairly fresh bottle. Got it on sale for $6.99 for a sixer at Round Rock Specs Friday after work.

Pours a dark brown, almost black with a normal head, very little retention...small amount of lace.

Smells of subtle coffee, some dark roasted malts, good...but nothing beyond that

I can taste a bit of the coffee...maybe a touch of chocolate...roasted malts, good, but again, not mind blowing

It's actually a lot thinner than I expected, but certainly quite drinkable. Would probably not go out of my way to by this again at regular price, but well worth the 6.99.

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Photo of seeswo
3.09/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with a reasonable tan head. Smells very weakly of roast and coffee. To be fair, it says best if consumed by today - acquired in a trade. Anyway, taste is very low-key. It's like a very basic but smooth porter that was dusted with the tiniest bit of coffee. I can only rate what I've got, but this is very basic. No off flavors, so thats good? Very smooth mouthfeel, but thin, and reasonably drinkable, I guess. Very forgettable.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to brewnic for the extra. Poured from 12oz bottle into a tulip glass. Pours deep, dark brown with a nice tan head and retains laces very well. Bittersweet chocolate and coffee aromas up front. Espresso, cocoa and "day-old" coffee present in taste. Medium body that fades a bit towards the end. Nice coffee bitter, drying finish that stays with you. Not much sweetness, but a rather good balance throughout. A pleasant surprise for me as I am not a big fan of coffee porter brews.

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Photo of deadliest
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance - Black with a finger of creamy tan head and lacing that totally coats the side of the glass.
Smell - Coffee and cocoa and not much else.
Taste - Coffee and chocolate dominate, a little bit of vanilla, and smoky malts.
Feel - Medium mouthfeel, creamy and smooth.
Drink - Most drinkable porter I've had so far. Can definitely put away a few.

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Photo of LiquidCucumber
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours black with some light coming through around the edges and bottom of the glass.

S - Biscuity malts with some coffee and a touch of prune and cocoa.

T - Sweet malt, coffee and cocoa apparent, this surely has some chocolate malt in it right? The coffee flavor isn't as overpowering as many other brews, it's well balanced by the malt and a light bitterness from both the coffee and hops.

M - Medium in body and fairly heavily carbonated. Fairly dry as well.

D - Pretty tasty, I wouldn't hesitate to pick it up if I ever had access to it.

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Photo of nas5755
3.06/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- brown with chocolate edges and normal head, little retention

S- Subtle milk-chocolate, dark malts

T-Chocolate, dark malts, a little roast, a little coffee fruit and coffee bitterness and some vanilla.

M- carbonation is ok, slightly on the plus side, thin

D- A fairly drinkable porter, could have thicker body and a little less carbonation, but overall a solid beer

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Photo of FosterJM
3.83/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

205th review on BA
bottle to mug

Best by 2/18/11

App- A nice dark brown with a pencil thin head. Not much retention either.

Smell- Coffee, cream and malts.

Taste- This gave me more of a coffee profile than a beer flavor. Has a nice malt backbone as it warms as well.

Mouth- A bit thin to me. Not like a usual porter that leaves a pretty good full feel.

Drink- Not too shabby, was a bit thin. Little watery but probably due to the closeness of the freshness date.

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Photo of axeman9182
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle courtesy of OakedCanuck, it has a best by date of 1/20/11 (just made it!) and was poured into my Duvel tulip.

The beer pours surprisingly dark, even for a porter. It's almost stout black, with no highlights showing through. At the same time, the head is a bit lighter than anticipated, closer to off white than tan. It approaches three fingers in height, but doesn't last for very long, nor does it leave anything really in the way of lacing. The nose is entirely one note, coffee (unsurprisingly). It could stand to be a little more forceful, and it is a bit dull with nothing else going on in the background. Try as I might, I can't find anything going on here beyond coffee. The blend of added coffee and flavor from the grains results in a coffee flavor that's round and smooth, rather than anything resembling acridity or being overly roasted. The body is a bit on the light side, even for a relatively dry porter. It could stand to have a bit more heft behind it. At the same time, the carbonation is a bit dull, contributing to the ho hum nature of this beer. If I was going to add coffee to a beer, my first choice for a base beer wouldn't be a porter that's already fairly coffee heavy. A little more contrast or variety of flavors would have made a serviceable beer more enjoyable to drink.

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Photo of Onenote81
4.14/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Awesome bonus bottle received from DeathbySexyBT (Brian) recently. Thanks!

Best if enjoyed by 1/20/11 printed on the side. I'm a rule-follower.

Pours an impenetrable dark black with no head at all. Obviously, no lace either. The nose is full of freshly ground coffee grounds, brewed espresso, mild chocolate, and a nice roasted quality. Very nice smell. The mouth is of moderate depth. Carbonation level is mild, but it's not thin. Full finish.

The coffee notes take off right where they left with the nose. Big roasted coffee all over the palate. Melds well with some bittersweet chocolate and faint almond. This is almost like drinking a chilled coffee. I like it. Well done. The look turned me off a bit, but this beer came through where it counts: flavor. Good beer. I'd like to have this one again.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.6/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Joshua (HopSchnapps) for this one. Best By date of 1/26/11. Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint.

A: Standard pour yields a 1 finger frothy light coffee head with poor retention. Beer is a clear, dark, almost opaque mahogany. Lacing is stringy and spotty with decent stick.

S: Nose is subtle but simple, appetizing, and appropriate. Roasted malt, coffee, and milk chocolate in perfect harmony.

T: Opens slightly metallic. Roasted malt and coffee beans combine to produce a subtle, smokey, tartness. Bitter chocolate towards the middle and end as coffee begins to fade. Finish is a touch of liquorice and chocolate sweetness as metallic taste returns. Aftertaste is roasted malt and a sprinkle of dark fruit.

M: Light to medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Slightly too lively at first but settles nicely as it warms. Smooth in the mouth and oily and filmy going down with just a bit of abrasiveness at the edges. Finish is messy with a slight, lingering aftertaste.

D: A slightly above-average porter that achieves a nice simplicity and balance. Feel is a bit off and nose is a bit too subtle but flavor is right on point and its a nice looking beer overall. Worth trying if you come across it.

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Photo of 700Uave
3.61/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

received this as an extra in a trade with bssendelbach - thanks dude.

Looks great. Dark brown, slightly see-through on the edges when held to the light. Lacing is decent and the half inch of head upon pouring fades to a nice ring of foam. Good carbonation. Lost points for having a faint metallic smell to it. I can pick out coffee and chocolate in the nose, with coffee more pronounced. Taste seems muted upfront and in the middle. Has a bitter aftertaste that lingers. overall taste is similar to the nose, minus the metallic.

The mouthfeel is a little thin. Mediocre beer. Not that bad, not that good.

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Shade Grown Coffee Porter from Real Ale Brewing Company
3.93 out of 5 based on 357 ratings.
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