Class Of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter | Deschutes Brewery

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84
good
399 Ratings
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Class Of '88 Imperial Smoked PorterClass Of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States
deschutesbrewery.com

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.10%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
A quarter century ago a passion for craft brewing ignited across the country. Today, the founding breweries of 1988 have united to commemorate that seminal year with a special selection of beers. Every bottle is a portal to the renaissance of craft brewing. Each steeped in heritage and expert craftmanship. Enjoy this tribute to the class of '88.

From the brewers of the celebrated 'Black Butte Porter' and 'Edmund Fitzgerald Porter' comes this limited-run collaboration. Brewed with roasted and smoked malt for a rich chocolate aroma and subtle smoky flavor.

Added by John_M on 04-27-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
399
Reviews:
89
Avg:
3.74
pDev:
12.57%
 
 
Wants:
6
Gots:
34
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 399 |  Reviews: 89
Photo of RobinLee
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of rfreed
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of MattyG85
4.26/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness chalice glass. Label says best by 04/30/14.

Appearance: Pours a dark blackish brown with hints of amber. Moderate amount of bubbles and about two fingers of beige head that slowly fade into a thin creamy layer. Leaves a decent amount of lacing.

Smell: A very roasty and smokey dark malt driven aroma. Dark roasted malts with a big scent of smoke. Hints of burnt caramel, biscuit, grains, burnt toast, dark chocolate, coffee, toffee, nuts, and yeast. Sweet scent of molasses and burnt sugars. Also a little hint of anise spice. Subtle earthy hops in the background with hints of grass. Very out front with the smoked malt. A pretty good smokey aroma.

Taste: Like the smell previews, a very smoke forward big dark porter taste with lots of burnt and roasty notes. Dark roasted malts with a big taste of smoke and notes of biscuit, grains, burnt caramel, toffee, dark chocolate, coffee, nut, and yeast. Sweet taste of molasses and other burnt sugars. A little taste of licorice anise spice. Earthy hops come in towards the finish with some notes of grass. A very smoke driven taste, but it isn't overwhelming. Taste is pretty good.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with a moderate amount of carbonation. Rich, creamy, and fairly slick. Finishes dry. Alcohol heat is masked very well.

Overall: A very good smoked up imperial version of a porter. Both of the breweries involved make their own world class porters and as expected this turned out good.

 1,501 characters

Photo of ambruns1979
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of Halcyondays
2.53/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2.25

22 oz. bomber,

A: Pours a very dark ruby brown with a medium off-white head with average retention, some spotty lace.

S: Smoke and soy sauce, a lot of molasses.

T: Smoke at the back end, but overall with a lot of cloying sweet malt. Has its good points, but just doesn't taste very good in the end.

M: Full-bodied, again cloyingly sweet sticking on the tongue for a long time.

O: The 2nd Class of '88 beer to disappoint me. I love Deschutes, but this series is not a winner so far.

 486 characters

Photo of RhyminBelmont
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Smoky, meaty, coffee, chocolate, looks and drinks beautifully. A bit strong on the smoke, which could alienate the less adventurous. Not the best imperial porter I have ever had, but a very strong showing. Great effort in this collaboration. Booze is barely noticeable for such high abv, which plays to the strengths of the brew. A little extreme, but very pleasant to drink.

 375 characters

Photo of Stevedore
3.81/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz bomber from the 2013 Class of '88 release. This one is from Deschutes. Poured into Russian River snifters with a friend and quaffed 6/14/2013.

Aroma: Mostly dark chocolates with a little bit of dark fruit, like figs. But the dominant scent is smoke. Not quite cigarette smoke, but not quite meat on a BBQ grill smoke either. It's something in between, and it's not the most interesting aroma. But to give it some credit, it brings a LOT of the smokiness. (3.75)

Colour: Dark black body, looked pretty opaque. Poured with a thick 2cm tan head that stuck around for quite a while, impressively so before fading into a thin film and collar. The lacing is quite excellent on this beer. The appearance definitely carries its weight in this beer, but seeing as that is its best characteristic, that's not saying much. (4.25)

Flavour: Lots of roast malt sweetness reminding me of chocolate, coffee along with some fig and licorise. Then the rest of it is smoke, smoke, smoke. It doesn't feel like I smoked a cigarette nor does it feel like I inhaled a crapload of smoke while grilling brats, but its definitely very smoky. I can't quite describe an analogous real world experience. I guess I'm just not impressed by this particular smoky characteristic. Still beyond average for smoked porters.. but given that I LOVE Edmund Fitzgerald and Black Butte, I can't help but feel let down by this collaboration. (3.75)

Mouthfeel: Very good carbonation on a medium-thick bodied beer. The finish is a bit dry and smoky, and the aftertaste is primarily some bitter subtle hoppiness along with more smoke. It actually all comes together fairly well. (4)

Overall: An interesting smoked porter that I'm glad to have had the chance to try, but I think the underlying beer would have done better without the smoky characteristic and perhaps an infusion of vanilla and/or coffee. Won't buy this collab again, but still a nice bottle to have opened up. (3.75)

Edit: I also managed to have some of the GLBC version on tap at Jerry's Sandwiches in Wicker Park (Chicago). That basically smelled like campfire, but in a better way if that makes sense. It was a more pungent, intense smokiness that really went over well and complemented the rest of the beer well compared to the Deschutes version.

 2,282 characters

Photo of EgadBananas
3.06/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown, very minimal head, dissipates to nothing. Second pour from the bottle, straight down the middle produced a good finger, still dissipating quickly. Tip: don't be gently. Aroma is a bit of smokiness, roast and chocolate, with a touch of fruitiness. Nice smoke and chocolate taste with roast and plums. Hides alcohol well, full bodied, creamy. Drinks easy.

It's a bit disjointed, even bland at times and never really impressed me. Just seemed messy...

 469 characters

Photo of Rosanne
3.14/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

malt smokey ?bourbon alcohol aroma, mid to high carbonation, powerful taste, smoky undertones, sweet bitter well balanced, smoky a little overpowering.

Shared a taster on-tap as past of a flight at the brewery; Deschutes Brewery & Public House, Bend, USA. As part of a six-week West Coast beer tour. I rate to taste, not to style. See my blog for more details: carbeers.wordpress.com

 385 characters

Photo of jabo134
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of jera1350
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of jegross2
3.98/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Reviewing the Class Of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter from Deschutes Brewery out of Bend, Oregon.

Score: 90

2013 vintage bottle served in a Doom glass and enjoyed on 06/12/13.

Appearance: Pours a dark soda color with nice ruby tones and a thin layer of off-white/tan head. Good lacing and retention. 4/5

Smell: Sweet chocolate, hint of smoke, caramel and brown sugar. A little roast. Real nice mix, not intense. The chocolate stands out most. Touch of "fizzy cola" in nose too as it hits room temp. 4/5

Taste: More roast and smoke in nose, which hits you up front, but it is not "smoke intense" (especially not side by side with La Muerta). Then comes the chocolate, fizzy caramel and brown sugar flavors. A little hoppiness mixed in well in the finish. Nothing overly complex or earth shattering, but really appealing and nice. 4/5

Mouthfeel: Medium-minus bodied, medium-light bodied. Dry finish. Par for the course for a porter. 3.75/5

Overall: A really nice roasty porter with a light smokiness and lots of chocolate. Definitely one I would order again if I saw it. Thanks for the chance to tick Mike.

Cost: $7.99 for a 22 oz (bomber) bottle.

 1,149 characters

Photo of Stevie_Janowski
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%

Photo of beercatbrew
4/5  rDev +7%

Photo of ThreeKingdoms
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of tdmccarthy
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of TempeBeerMan
4.08/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a nonic pint.

A - Pours brown with ruby highlights on the edges. Foamy two-finger beige head. Sticky ringlets of lacing.

S - Moderate strength aroma of chocolate, anise, smoke, and clean alcohol.

T - Wow. Much smokier than I was expecting. Damn near a Rauchbier. Meaty, campfire smoke and ash dominates the flavor profile, with hints of bakers chocolate, black licorice, burnt toast, and caramelized sugar. Rich and flavorful. Alcohol well hidden. Lingering finish.

M - Medium bodied, with a velvety feel. Low carbonation.

O - Very good, but I was wishing for a little more "porter" and a little less smoke. But overall, a robust porter with some really nice elements.

 702 characters

Photo of KBomb
4.16/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black body, with just a little transparency around the edges to let some light illuminate a dark cranberry color. Quiet little tan head that disappears and leaves no lacing.

Smell of smoke is pronounced, but not at all overpowering--its perfectly balanced with roasted sugary malt.

Again, a lovely act of balance is achieved with a little chocolate, some molasses sweetness, and a little bit of smokiness.

A little chewy for a porter, a little wet for a stout. It finds the middle ground it wants.

Good beer. It might crowd out my current favorite smoked porter...

 568 characters

Photo of arizcards
4.02/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Picked up a bomber today from BevMo for $7.49. Best before 4/29/14.

Beer poured a cola brown with a nice head upon the initial pour.

Nose is wonderfully smoked malts with some hints of chocolate.

Taste is smoked malts forward, some chocolate, and hints of dark fruit. Hopping is light but the smokiness keeps the sweetness at bay. Finish is dry.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and decently carbonated.

Overall this is a pretty smackable beer. I was surprised at the degree of smokiness...it could almost be classified as ale version of a rauchbier. Definitely give it a shot if you like porters and or rauchbiers.

 614 characters

Photo of jakecattleco
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%

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

A: Body is a dark shade of brown with a light white head. Not much retention.
S: Rauch-like wood smoke, black malt. Pretty straightforward.
T: Again, smoked malt dominates along with some underlying sweet chocolate maltiness. A little roasted, a little ashy. Smokeyness subdues the rest of the beer. Alcoholis pretty well hidden. Finishes roasted with a mild bitterness.
M: Medium-bodied, maybe a bit on the thin side, with moderate carbonation.

I have no idea which malts they used, but this seems to have a lot of rauch influence. I’ve been enjoying Black Butte for a long time and Edmond for a few years and this doesn’t remind me of either. Alaskan Smoked Porter would rank a little higher for me, but this is good enough to sit on another bottle or two and get a better idea of what lies under all that smoke.

 819 characters

Photo of stortore
4/5  rDev +7%

Photo of Nachos4two
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%

Photo of chugalug06
3.33/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3

Large flowing fluffy tan head, brew is thick and black. Missing much lacing...

Smoke, tons of smoke. Campfire, smoke, pork, salt, bacon. Mildly gross.

Thin, full bodied, smokey, roasty, deep, oily, tons of smoke... Mild sweetness, zero bitterness, low(er) carbonation.

A slight mess. Not sure If I can recommend... Deschutes and Great Lakes can do MUCH better!!!

 367 characters

Photo of Petrofessor
4/5  rDev +7%

Class Of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter from Deschutes Brewery
3.74 out of 5 based on 399 ratings.
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