Pipeline Porter | Kona Brewing Co.

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Pipeline PorterPipeline Porter
Very Good
1,936 Ratings
Pipeline PorterPipeline Porter

Brewed by:
Kona Brewing Co.
Hawaii, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Iguana on 10-11-2006

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,936 |  Reviews: 747
Photo of felipe2toes
4.13/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours jet black with a thin off white head that disappeared fairly quickly.

Smells mostly of roasted malt and dark chocolate and a little bit of coffee. Considering it's made from Kona coffee, I was expecting more coffee on the nose.

There's chocolate and roasted malt on the palate again, and there's more of a coffee flavor--there's a bitter coffee finish.

It's a good tasting porter, with a good amount of coffee flavor. Very easy drinking.

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Photo of PabstLou
3.99/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured into a frosted pint glass. Poured almost black with a light tan head that extends to about the second knuckle high. The head disappeared in minutes leaving trace of its marks on the glass.

S- Not so much in this department, the smell of coffee is obviously most dominant, but i also smelled a pinch of cocoa in there

T- I was really surprised at how tasty this beer was the first time I had it - the smell does the beer no justice until it is consumed. Right off the bat I tasted the coffee, blended with a hint of creamy cocoa and smokey, roasted malt. Beautiful combination and a delicious aftertaste.

MF- Medium/Light bodied with kind of a watery feel compared to other porters. No bubbles

DB- Has a wonderful drinkability compared to other porters I've tasted. Goes down VERY smoothly and leaves notes of smoked coffee beans dancing on your tongue.

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Photo of airheadmtrcycle
3.56/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have been excited to try this beer. I love porters, especially ones with bitter coffee/espresso flavors. I might be setting myself up for disappointment as the porters I like most do not contain any coffee at all. I suppose the brewers get that flavor from their treatment and selection of malt. Perhaps hops play a role as well.

A born on date of 11/08/10. Made in New Hampshire.

From a bottle into a Sierra Nevada pint glass. Good pour with a small, off-white head leaving ample lacing behind. The beer is pretty dark, only traces of red when held to a light.

Not a lot of coffee aroma. More smokey to me. The coffee is more evident in the flavor. There's a little smoke and some sweetness as well (not too much). The body is almost medium so the mouth feel is pretty substantial, not watery (the curse of a porter, in my opinion).

All in all, not what I hoped for, but good in its own way. I would certainly drink another if the opportunity presented itself and I can safely recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good porter. I might even pick up a sixer.

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Photo of rawfish
4.01/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark brown consistency while pouring and forms a fluffy light brown head of two fingers with good retention. Spotty lacing down the glass.

S: Light aroma of roasted coffee beans with some of that smokey burnt aroma as well. Dark chocolate and almonds.

T: Hefty coffee flavor indistinguishable from any other coffee but it's a strong profile with some malty sweetness on the back end almost like a cold espresso.

M: Medium bodied and well carbonated.

D: Not the smoothest thing across the palate and there is some acidity from the coffee but still a session porter.

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Photo of irischmatt
4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drinking a bottle brewed in Portsmouth. I'm unsure how widespread the Portsmouth bottles are compared to ones from Hawaii, although a friend familiar with both says they are indistinguishable.

Pours an extremely dark brown with a consistent though shallow light brown head. Carbonation isn't readily easy to see, though the reliable head is evidence of moderate carbonation.

Smells strongly roasty, almost like a Sam Smith's oatmeal stout, with coffee coming out stronger on subsequent smells.

Tastes weaker than it smells, although the coffee taste is more apparent when drinking than when merely smelling. Normally Kona coffee is distinctive. The use of Kona coffee versus any other kind of coffee is indistinguishable in this beer, although I can see this being a negative for only die-hard Kona-philes. Hop flavors are absent, as is any sourness or off flavors. The two most prominent flavors are roasted barley and sweetness, followed by smooth coffee

It has a thinner mouthfeel than most porters, but this couples with the sweet and coffee flavors makes it extremely easy to drink. Moving the beer around in the mouth is unusually pleasant and easy.

Overall this is a highly drinkable session beer. It's strongest flavors do not affect tastebuds over time, and it's smoothness makes it pleasant to swallow.

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Photo of yesyouam
4.06/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Kona Pipeline Porter is an opaque beer that's the darkest brown. It has a big, fluffy, light brown head that shows outstanding retention. If has a full aroma of roasted coffee, wood and slightly sweet grain. It's medium bodied and very smooth-- almost flat. The finish is chewy and slightly chalky. It's nicely balanced with lots of coffee that's both roasty and wooden. It's just bitter enough. This is smooth and easy to drink.

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Photo of morimech
4.37/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown color with some red highlights. One finger of head that holds on for a nice amount of time before settling to a thick cap. Moderate amount of sticky lacing is left on the glass.

The aroma is one of the best for a coffee beer. The dark malt and coffee marry nicely. Fresh coffee combined with dark chocolate. Smells like one of those overpriced mocha coffees at the coffee shop.

Coffee comes through in the flavor very strong. Would of liked a little more malt but otherwise tastes awesome. Fresh pressed coffee and dark malt makes a great combination. Does not have the roasted aspect that many coffee stouts have. I prefer it this way.

The one minor fault is the body. Maybe I am expecting too much from a porter but I would of liked a little more density. Otherwise it is nicely carbonated.

One of the best coffee beers out there. A coffee beer does not have to be huge and boozy to deliver a wonderful coffee flavor.

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Photo of yemenmocha
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown when held to light, nearly black when just peacefully resting on my table. Nose has whopper of a coffee aroma. No ambiguity there. Same on the palate, almost like a cold coffee with carbonation. Some roasty flavors present too. Medium to light bodied and a long coffee finish.

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Photo of birdyone
3.27/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Looks like a flat coke, but with beer line spider webbing. Very dark.

Nothin special about the smell, but nothing offensive either.

The taste is a little unique, or at least new to me. Tastes like a porter, but the finish is like you ate a coffee bean. I like coffee, I like beer. Together I though I would like them more, but really not a bad combo.

The mouthfeel is smooth, but not overly special.

Because of the uniqueness of this one, I can't really see myself drinking a six pack in a weekend, let alone a good night. If I were some place that had it on tap, maybe. It's good, and worth having, but not a kick back and drink beer.

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Photo of cbutova
3.23/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Pours black with a light tan head that builds to about a finger in size. Head appears somewhat creamy and has poor retention. Creamy ring leaves nothing for lace.

S- Faint. I do pick up some weaker notes of roast malt and coffee. Not much going at all.

T- Roast malt lends a nice flavor with some milk chocolate notes as well. Coffee comes in more in the finish and builds with time. Acidic portion of the coffee comes into play. Notes of nutty malt.

MF- Light body with more of a watery feel to it. High carbonation is smooth. Some coffee bitters.

DB- Has a nice porter feel to it. The coffee has too much of an acidic feel in my opinion but it still goes down decently.

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Photo of BrewCrew2010
4.19/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: This beer pours a dark brown, almost black, body with red highlights. On top is a small tan head that quickly disappears to bits of island foam.

S: Rich coffee aroma with a strong malty backbone.

T: A smooth and creamy flavor of rich roasted coffee with chocolate malts and finishes a bit dry.

M: Loads of carbonation, medium to full body, and a creamy texture.

D: Before I knew it I drank 6 of these. Good price, good beer, & easy to get.

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Photo of Nerudamann
3.55/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a stein.

Look - black with about a finger's worth of a dark khaki-colored foam that dissipates quickly.

Smell - the coffee beans are pretty obvious, with a touch of caramel..maybe even mocha? Works for the theme.

Taste and mouthfeel - malt taste is a little more prevelant than the coffee bean taste, that is until the late middle and finish. If there's any aftertaste, it's mostly a sweetness lining the mouth. Texture isn't too badly unbalanced, but lies more on the creamier side.

Drinkability - quite drinkable..would work a little better in a colder environment, I think..which ironic in that the brewery is from Hawaii.

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Photo of Duhast500
3.88/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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

The color is a dark black with just a small amount of dark maroon highlights and a thin finger of foamy brownish head. No lacing left on the glass.

The smell is a bit malty with a coffee bean aroma that was a promising but doesn't to get much stronger from there. There is a small amount of chocolate kicking around in the back as well.

The taste is sweet and inviting. A mellow roasty malt flavor mixed with a nice coffee flavor slides in and caresses your tastes buds then slides out before much of a notice. This sips really well and a very nice coffee flavor pops more when slowly sipped. The warmer it gets more of a creamy flavor comes out.

The feel of this beer medium bodied and has a smooth feel going down. It is pretty drinkable and has only a small aftertaste that is gone in the shortest of time.

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Photo of r0nyn
3.87/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into my trusty Troegs pint glass.

Pours a deep, dark mahogany brown with ruby highlights around the edges. Frothy off-white head that gets to about half an inch thick before dissipating, leaving lots of stringy, sticky lacing. Coffee completely dominates the smell, along with some subtle milk chocolate nuances and just a touch of maltiness at the end. Wow, this is almost on par with some of the other coffee-styled beers I've had. Really quite enticing.

The taste doesn't quite live up to the smell, though. The coffee is there right off the bat, but it's a bit thin and subdued. It's followed by the sweetish malts and just a hint of that cocoa detected in the nose. Finishes with just a slight burnt whisper. Hops are non-existent and there's little bitterness of which to speak. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied. It goes down with a little bit of carbonation and a slick finish.

Drinkability is pretty good. Great smell with an above average taste make this a very easy brew to knock back with some friends. I just wish that the flavors could have followed up on the very promising nose, but oh well. Quality brewing from Kona, nonetheless.

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Photo of Strix
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown, tan head, recedes to a minimal ring.

Roasted malt in the smell, with coffee and dark chocolate notes.

Pretty standard roasted malt portery taste, with a subtle blend of coffee, cocoa, and dark chocolate.

Fairly smooth mouthfeel.

I enjoyed this, nicely balanced and drinkable.

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Photo of RossCain
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter

A: Dark ruby, borderline black in color (reminiscent of light roast coffee, actually) with a very small light brown head. The head only lingered for about 10 seconds until it completely faded, leaving light bubbly lacing around the edges of the glass. Retained bits of splotchy webbing throughout the glass.

S: Immediately evident notes of dark roast coffee come off of the nose followed by lighter notes of chocolate and roasted malts. Quite a pleasant smell in all.

T: Thick and robust taste of dark roasted coffee beans upfront well balanced with a roasted malt profile. Very roasty but not overly stressing on the palate. Finishes lightly dry with a slight bittersweet chocolate taste and minor notes of raisin and dark stone fruit.

M: Thick, chewy, and overall smooth all the way down. Light carbonation which is well balanced for the style and the beer leaves a very pleasant coating of the palate after sipping. I did not find this beer to stress the palate as some other roasty porters tend to do which was a welcome surprise.

D: Extremely drinkable with a well balanced and delicious flavor profile alongside a surprisingly easy to drink mouthfeel. Combined with the low abv, I could see this being a very easy beer to knock back a few of without batting an eyelash.

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Photo of rivalrome
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Found this badboy as one of the last few winter beers that was on the shelf here in Orlando.

Served into a Southern Tier Pint Glass at 49ºF.

Pours a dark walnut color, similar to coffee. Forms a very small light creamy tan head ontop that dissipates rather quickly with little to no lacing.

Smells strongly of coffee, caramel and slight roasts, hints of hoppy goodness.

Initial tastes aren't primarily coffee, leaning more towards the malts and hops with a heavy coffee aftertaste. Hints of dark chocolate are also very prevalent. Carbonation seems rather heavy.

It isn't as heavy as heavy as it's thick color gives off, but it'll do. The mouthful feels somewhat watery.

Overall a fairly drinkable beer, but not a favorite amongst the coffee porters and stouts that I've had.

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Photo of clark123456
4.15/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark black color; I can't see through it in a pint glass.

S: Slightly burned coffee odor comes through. As it warms up, a caramel odor is present.

T: First you get a solid dark ale flavor, followed by a hint of coffee. It's not very bitter and the aftertaste is almost non-existent. A slight coffee aftertaste is present though.

M: Alkaline with very little body.

D: This beer is very drinkable, but you had better like the flavor of coffee.

Overall: I'm not a coffee drinker, but I really enjoyed this beer. I'll probably try to brew a similar beer in the near future.

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Photo of beertunes
2.68/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served in straight pint glass. Poured a light black color with 1/4 inch of light tan head that had low retention and OK lacing, a fairly average looking beer.

The aroma had mostly malts and just a hint of roast, blandly typical. The flavors were a bit more pronounced, the malt a bit fuller and the roast a touch more noticeable, but was also blandly typical.

The body and drinkability were both typical and average for the style. Overall, this was a slightly below average beer, not terrible by any means, but also not note-worthy or memorable.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.39/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle into dinner glass in high altitude Denver, CO.

A: Pours a creamy one finger head of decent retention. Dark porter brown-black. Pretty standard. Mildly inviting.

Sm: Coffee and caramel. A clean scent of moderate strength.

T: The coffee is incorporated very nicely, but is missing roast. Some caramel. Built well. It's balanced but simple.

Mf: Chewy. Mildly thick. Wet - not the dryness I expect from a porter. I'd prefer it with more dryness especially at the climax. Too wet for its style.

Dr: Well worth a try for a porter fan like me, especially at its relatively low price. I'll reach for it again when I don't feel like trying something new.

[Beer advocate changed the weights of each category relative to the overall score with no notice, so I have no idea what score I originally gave this. Probably a B-.]

2nd impression on-draught:


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Photo of schlimenhaumer
3.74/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a regular dinner glass at high altitude (above 5,000 feet).

A - Dark color, but not quite opaque. About a two-finger off-white head with good lacing.

S - The coffee smell really comes through to me. Clean.

T - Tastes like porter with coffee in the brew.

M - Wet all the way through.

D - Good price for this bottle, maybe a little bit heavy to drink all night.

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Photo of TheTippler
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown color. Strong smell of coffee beans. Very easy drinking porter. Goes down very smooth. Alcohol taste is negligible. Medium-strong coffee taste. As I lover of dark coffee, I love this porter. Excellent smoothness to coffee flavor ratio. Great drinker.

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Photo of almychristopher
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

this beer pours a dark translucent brown with a tan head that recedes quickly to a ring of lacing. the aroma brings a strong roasted malt scent with a nice coffee counterpoint. the taste follows with a rich coffee flavor enhanced by the black malt taste to a near tart bitterness. the medium mouthfeel and good co2 make this a very drinkable beer.

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Photo of AndyAvalanche
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass. Comes out dark brown with some mahogany red highlights on the side. Well carbonated and lots of bubbles rise to the top creating a small tan (like coffee with extra cream color) head. The head doesn't stick around too long and it doesn't really provide much lacing.

I like the smell. There is certainly a generous amount of coffee in this brew, however it's pretty well blended in with the beer. Black coffee is the initial aromas that jump out at you, but it's followed by dark roasted malts, chocolate, an followed by some earthy hops.

The taste is equally as good, and you can really notice the complexity and how well the coffee and the beer ingredients are blended together to make this beverage. Again the black coffee is the initial flavor, than the chocolate malts and hops, than believe it or not it finishes with the coffee flavor. So it starts and stops with coffee, but never really gets too much coffee to it.

Mouthfeel is pretty good, it meets the overall standard for a porter I guess. Its probably more medium bodied than full, could certainly be more full in my opinion. Somewhat smooth with a strong bitter finish. Good drinkability overall, I'd certainly get it again. The first Kona brew I've had, I'd certainly be willing to try more.

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Photo of NefariousR
3.85/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz. glass bottle into a tulip pint glass.

A - Dark brown with ruby notes. Forms a tan, foamy head that dissipates quickly.
S - Coffee, roasted malt and dark chocolate.
T - Roasted coffee, malty sweetness. Roast flavor is felt strongly in the aftertaste.
M - Medium bodied with light carbonation. Slightly sticky.
D - Quite drinkable and flavorful, yet still a bit lighter than other coffee porters I have tried.

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Pipeline Porter from Kona Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.8 out of 5 with 1,936 ratings