Class Of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter | Deschutes Brewery

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Class Of '88 Imperial Smoked PorterClass Of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter
BA SCORE
3.74/5
Good
Class Of '88 Imperial Smoked PorterClass Of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Imperial 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.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ranking:
-
Reviews:
91
Ratings:
401
pDev:
12.57%
 
 
Wants:
6
Gots:
35
Trade:
0
 
User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 91 | Ratings: 401
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

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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.

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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.

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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...

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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.

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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.

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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!!!

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Photo of russpowell
3.77/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours an effervescent scarlet/brown with a pinky of tan head. Viscious look to this, faint lacing & even less head retention

S: Beechwood, juicy fruit/taffy

T: Follows the nose, big time smokeyness, some charred grain & little bit of figs up front. Figs & smokeyness along with some carob & jammyness as this warms, dryness too. Finishes woody, smokey, with some charcoal, figgyness, slight dryness & a bit of banana taffy

MF: Medium bodied, dry, subtle carbonation, somewhat warming. Thins out as this warms

This is a sipper, not a bad Smoked Porter, but a bit too over stated for my liking; give me Alaskan Smoked Porter any day, but well worth a try. Maybe just a little too complex for me, maybe a Winter release would've worked better for me? Was hoping for a little more maltyness

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Photo of Impfan
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Off-white head, deep ruby brown hue, strong smoky aroma (almost reminiscent of Lapsang Souchong tea) with nice chocolate underpinnings. Taste is similar, and the body is silky, and almost creamy, particularly for a porter. The finish is lengthy and the smoke clings to the palate much like the lovely lacing clings to the sides of the glass. Despite the definite smoky leanings, this never crosses over into campfire or ashtray territory, but reminds me more of Schlenkerla Rauchbier. Highly recommended.

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Photo of yamar68
4.06/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark coffee brown with a creamy khaki head. Thick lace.

I'm not typically a big fan of smoked beers but this one is mellow enough to endure with a smile. Mild smoke with giant roasty chocolate malt.

Great porter base... unsurprisingly. Two of the great porter brewers coming together, I would expect nothing less. The smoke addition is tasteful, even for someone like me. Milk chocolate, toasted grain... not much of an alcohol presence.

Glad I got to try this one on for size.

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Photo of chanokokoro
4.34/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Deschutes Brewery Public House branded short stemmed tulip/snifter

Pours a very dark cola brown capped by a one and half finger beige fluffy head. Average retention as the head slowly dissipates and forms a thin foam ring. Threads of sticky lacing cling to the glass here and there. The nose is a mixture of smoky, charred roasted malt and bakers chocolate. Dark chocolate notes, charred malt, robust roastiness, with big molasses notes midpalate. Finishes with unsweetened cocoa powder, some warming alcohol, and a pleasant smoky finish. Smooth, silky medium body that seems slightly heavier at times, moderate carbonation. This is an absolutely fantastic brew. All of the flavors are distinct, but are well-integrated and expertly balanced. This brew exceeded my expectations, and they were very high from the start. Paired perfectly with a grilled beef burger and beef kabobs.

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.2/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Local Option cervoise.

I had a bottle; VDubb had a bottle; we were at his place, so we went with his bottle. Whatevs. This stuff pours a deep black-brown topped by a finger of khaki foam. The nose comprises roasted malts, smoke (strong, but still mild), and a dash or two of dark chocolate powder. Simple and effective. The taste brings in more of the same, with a slightly stronger vein of smoke, more chocolate, and a small addition of mild molasses. The smoke weaves effortlessly with the roast, neither one overpowering the other. Balance is the name of the game here, people. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a fairly dry finish. Overall, a damn fine smoked porter. 'Nuff said.

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Photo of bsp77
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Snifter.

Appearance: Very dark brown with light tan head that settles gently around the top.

Smell: Quite chocolaty, with light molasses and smoke.

Taste: Surprisingly subtle, with chocolate, smoke, molasses and dark fruit. The smoke is also noticeable on the finish, but nothing really lingers on the aftertaste.

Feel: Medium bodied, which is much lighter than expected. Low carbonation, somewhat creamy body, with a semi-dry finish.

Overall: Nice Smoked Porter, but definitely expected more from these brewers. This is a time where a 4 is a disappointment.

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Photo of morimech
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Very dark brown color with just over one finger of head that had excellent retention before settling to a thick cap. Heavy sheets of lace is left down the glass.

More than subtle smoke aroma. Smoke actually dominates. Has the smoke character of the German smoked beers, just not as strong. Very subtle chocolate notes.

More balanced flavor but still pretty strong with the smoke. Some smoke beers remind the drinker of ham or bacon, this does not. More woody and not savory. Nice base of chocolate and slightly sweet malt. Does sort of taste like a blend of Black Butte and Edmund Fitz with smoke even though it is not actually a blend.

As usual for a Deschutes beer, awesome carbonation, body, and texture. Soft, even, and creamy.

Has smoke, but did not really marry well with the chocolate malt. Still a very good beer and this collab did not disappoint.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.26/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Best by April 29, 2014 on this bottle of Deschutes Class of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter, collaboration brew with Great Lakes.

A- a very dark brown pour, fluffy 1" head of foam that shrinks fairly quickly but leaves nice lacing behind.

S- very malty nose, roasted malt and sweet malt, big dose of smoke. More whiffs give me a fruity character...like semi tart fruitiness. Some alcohol as well.

T- very big smoke taste, roasted malt, a bit of fruit tartness, big sweet notes in the finish, almost like cough syrup but it didn't quite cross the fence to go there. There's lots of warming after the swallow.

M- a pretty big body on this fella with lightish carbonation.

O- I'm really digging this brew. All sorts of flavours going on and to me, they are working fine. A much better collab effort than the Class of '88 Barleywine that I had a while ago. Highly recommended.

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Photo of John_M
4.47/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A left over keg from the Holiday Ale Festival, this was on offer along with lots of other tasty goodies for the Belmont Station "badass black" fest.

The beer pours a fairly dark brown color with pretty good head retention and lacing. The beer looks attactive enough, but then I stuck my beak in the glass. This beer smells just great, as I pick up considerable smoked meats and smoke salmon, but with condsierable black cherry, vanilla, light coffee and chocolate as well. The beer smells as if it will be a bit on the sweet side (which it is), but the smoke aroma counters and blends in so well with everything else I'm picking up. The flavor profile replicates the nose, and I love how the black cherry flavor seems to dominate the flavor profile. There's still plenty of smoke, coffee and light licorice as well, but it all comes togethere to make one exceptionally fine porter. Mouthfeel is medium bodied to full, the beer has a wonderful soft, almost creamy consistency. Alcohol is very well integrated into the flavor profile; the beer is not the least bit heavy, tiring or hot on the palate.

Just an all around excellent beer from Deschutes, and one I hope they make again at some point. My only criticism is that it's just a bit on the sweet side, but that's a minor quibble in this excellent beer.

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Class Of '88 Imperial Smoked Porter from Deschutes Brewery
Beer rating: 3.74 out of 5 with 401 ratings