Gorges Smoked Porter | Ithaca Beer Company

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Gorges Smoked PorterGorges Smoked Porter

Brewed by:
Ithaca Beer Company
New York, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by JackStraw22 on 02-05-2005

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Reviews: 139 | Ratings: 196
Photo of josefnewsong
4.82/5  rDev +26.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My favorite porter. Not typical for the style - verry smokey...the taste makes me think of what smoke would taste like if it were congealed into a dark fruit. Alcohol is very well disguised...I could rattle off all the intricacies but suffice to say it is a must try if you enjoy porters, especially if you like smokey things, and is an amazing/unique example of the style. One of my favorite beers.

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Photo of lovindahops
4.79/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pretty excited to try this brew from my favorite brewery. This should be one heckuva treat!

A- black as night with a nice mocha head that disappears to only leave a small trace of a head. Some lacing resides on the sides of the glass. A dark and impressive looking brew

S- Incredible! Before the glass can get to my nose.... I am walloped with a fire pit slap in the face! Smoked charcoal malt in the face with attributes of some dark fruit. Slight alcohol at the end but wow is this impressive!

T- DELICIOUS! Smokey dark malt flalvor that is enrobed as chocolate coffee tones. There is some sweet brown sugar throughout the tasting as well. Hands down, one of the best tastings I have ever had!

M- a good hearty brew that has both sweet and dark flavors all over. Very good

D- Ithaca has done it again for me. While I have never had this brew before, the graded properties, as well as the drinkability itself are so impressive. Even at 7.5%, I could probably polish off a sixer easily. Ithaca Beer Company's Gorges... the best smokefest in the east!

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Photo of paigertx
4.59/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Pony Bar in nyc, smokey and salty bringing out a unique complexity to a porter. For those who appreciate smoked fish and a salty beer this one hits the spot. I really enjoyed this and just wanted to say the latter to inform those who may not have the same taste appreciation. Wasn't sure of the drinkability but went for a second of this one as it grew on me and didn't know if I would find again on tap. Try this if you see it!

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Photo of apintofknowledge
4.52/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Smoked beers seem to be very divisive among beer drinkers... either you love them or you hate them, and there's little middle ground. I'm among those who truly love smoked beers, and the smokier the better... so, that being said, Gorges is now high on my list.

Pours deep dark walnut, with a thin tan head. Medium body, light carbonation. The beer starts with nice cocoa and roasted grain flavors leading into a big smokey middle, almost bacon-like, with roasted notes still coming through. Mineral notes on the finish meld with lingering smoke. And while I love Stone's Smoke Porter, a staple in my fridge whenever its warm enough to BBQ, I have now found a brew that surpasses it in both smokiness and depth of flavor.

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Photo of DIM
4.41/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a: This was pretty close to black, at least in a dimly lit bar. It was served to me with a thick, long lasting, creamy white cap.

s: I found a very nice balance between smoke and rich chocolate with a little roasty coffee to boot.

t: I didn't taste anything that reminded me of a porter, this came across to me as more of a smoked stout. Works for me. This beer is dominated by plenty of smoke and lots of lightly sweet, dark chocolate. There was bitter smoke and coffee grounds at the finish.

m: Very chewy and creamy overall.

o: Just a stellar beer. We stopped in South Philly Tap Room to celebrate after watching the Phils win game 1 of the NLDS. After the first pint went down way to easy I handed my keys to my buddy and ordered another.

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Photo of cosmicevan
4.34/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at bukowski's in boston. Arrived in a 12oz tulip w a 1/2 finger of white head on top of a watery black brew. Hard to tell what i'm looking at in this dark bar, but I am psyched to try me some ithaca smo,ed porter! Smells awesome, like smoked bacon. Burnt porter. Awesome! Now for a taste. Wow the smokiness is even more intense. Not for faint of heart. Campfire madness over a pretty rich porter. Nit nearly as watery as I expected. Fantastic.brew.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.32/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown with minimal tan head. Nice roasted and smoked nose. Flavor is thick malts. Definite roasted and smoked aspect there. Consistent flavor profile. Smooth liquid feel with a slightly biting carbonation. A nice porter to drink. Definitely worth trying.

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Photo of oberon
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had read past reviews of this beer and thought it might be a bit uninspriring but boy was I wrong.Poures adeep brown with tons of ruby tint thruout a tight but thinner almond colored head atop,the smoke presence is definently there in the nose but its just part of a wider picture somewhat fruity and nice earthy tones abound in the nose.Quite complex and multidimentional flavors starts out with hints of brown suagar and then a big hardwood smokiness takes over finishing into a dry "raw" earthy,nutty finish.Wow I for one loved this beer and rumors of a new recipe if true was the right decision cuzz this beer rocks!

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Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks for this bottle goes out to Ithaca's only brute, Lum. Thanks Paul!

Pours a deep brown color with some ruby highlights. A nice off white head grows and lingers for quite some time. Nice n fluffy leaving good lacing.

Nose is roasted malt, some peat and smoke, almost a scotch ale nose. A touch of dark fruit in here, but not much.

Wow! A very smooth and flavorful smoked porter! Suprisingly drinkable. Taste profile starts off with some roasted malt and a good creaminess. Smoke and peat flavors arise through the middle and come to a peak towards the finish. A creamy layer of smoke lays all through the middle. Not the most aggressive smoke flavor, but plenty for what this beer needs. The finish has a tiny touch of bitterness, but not much. Smoke and roasted malt linger on in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is right about where it should be here. Often with smoked porters of this abv, you get a bit of thinness that offsets the smoke and makes things akward, but the viscosity here is just about right. Carbonation is solid.

Drinkability is really where this Smoked porter shines. A tough category quite often for the style, but this one makes it easy. Easy drinking without being wildly aggressive in the smoke department.

Overall a suprisingly good smoked porter from IBC. Smoked porter isn't a style I often have more than one of, but with this one that would certainly be possible. A very nice representation of the style, and a good drinkable take on it. Good beer yet again from the folks at IBC.

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Photo of bultrey
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Edited 2-8-10:
What a difference five years makes. This beer has gone from really... well... bad, to remarkably good, and is now one of the better smoked beers I've had from a US brewer. Just a great combo of roastiness, rich dark chocolate, and smokiness, all without being too sweet or so big that you can't pound a few. Beautiful. Way to turn this beer around Ithaca.

Original review 11-8-05:
I love me some Ithaca Brewing Co., but I have to say they missed the mark on this one. The main detriment to this is a fruity cough-syrup like aroma and flavor that is barely complemented by some decent smoke character. Too much sweetness and not enough porter-like roastiness in the malt. The appearance and mouthfeel are just fine, but I wasn't able to finish this beer. Love the bottle design and the name, though.

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Photo of number1bum
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown color with some red at the edges, and a creamy two fingers of tan head. Keeps a pretty full lace and leaves some splashes of stick on the way down.

This is really a nice porter nose, with aromas of roasted and toasty malts, some sweet caramel and a bit of chocolate, some lightly fruity hops, and as the name suggests, a nice smokiness.

Taste is primarily a roasted/toasted malt flavor with some smoky notes. There is some caramel sweetness there, too, but the roasty and smoky flavors are more prominent. There are more hops in the taste than there was in the smell, which lend some earthy and fruity flavor, and a bit of bitterness to go with the roasted and smoke flavors. It's really pretty tasty, and could be even smokier without losing drinkability.

This is medium bodied and has a pretty smooth feel to it. Finishes a touch on the chalky side, but still pretty clean overall.

I find this to be a highly drinkable, tasty porter, with quite a bit of flavor at a reasonable abv. If anything, I think it could be even smokier, but as it is it's quite good and definitely worth picking up.

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Photo of xenolithic
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my pint glass a near opaque black with a 1/2 finger tanish head. Light barely penetrates around the edges and leaves a caramel/pale black glow.

Smell is a light campfire, think the one you just put out last night. Much less strong than the ones I've smelt before, though more pleasing. Some stale coffee notes also come through.

Taste is a little more of the same, smoky characteristic is less pronounced and you get some woody charcoal type of taste to it. Much to be expected, but slightly more muted than the other Rauchbiers I have had in the past. Much like the smell there is a little bit of stale coffee that comes through.

The mouthfeel is slightly oily. Finish is sort of a tangy bitterness that bites at the sides of your tongue.

Like many Rauchbiers, this isn't exactly something I would have every day. However, because it is more subdued and therefore less "in your face" I would probably throw two of these back at a barbecue with some nice roast pork shoulder.... mmmmh.

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Photo of sonicdescent
4.27/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a bit of a weak head even with an aggressive pour. Dark Dark red/brown, almost black.

Smell vanilla, chocolate, BBQ, roasted malt.

Tastes not as smoky as some other smoked porters I have had, but still very good. Chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, and a smoky background. Smoked Porter, though not an official style, is my favorite kind of beer.

Mouth is thin/medium and carb is medium.

As for drinkability, I found this locally but haven't seen it since. Hope I can get some more as I start to move from trying everything to buying a select few greats.

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Photo of OneDropSoup
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a shaker pint: Good-lookin' brew! Deep, dark brown that you can round to black, with deep crimson highlights. Nice mocha head, two fingers, that rises above the rim of the glass like a souffle & glistens with tight bubbles. Leaves nice stretches of lacing.

Pleasant smokiness in the smell, like a flannel shirt after an evening around a campfire. A little peaty? I'm kind of getting that turfy, earthy smell. A little wet grass, a little cocoa. Pretty good, I keep going back for more.

Smoky & roasty malt up front, chased by a mild earthy hop character, a little cola. Finishes slightly acidic or astringent, with a smoky, fireside aftertaste. If anything, leaning a little on the bitterside with the roast, but that's searching for criticism. Very good.

Medium-bodied, pretty smooth at first but, like I said in the taste, a little acidic & astringent in the mouthfeel. Again, not bad, but not totally smooth.

This one's a winner. I'm kind of a sucker for smoke character, but have still found smoky beers that weren't really to my liking. This has a very fresh, evocative character & reminds me of sitting by a campfire or a stone fireplace. I'd definitely go for this one again.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.23/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this in a trade with nutbrown. Thanks Alan!

This pours a dark brown with a nice 2 finger head of off white foam. Very good head retention. Overall, a very fine looking Porter in the glass.

The smell is of roasted malt, some caramel malt, and a wee bit of citrus.

The taste is a fine balance of roasted and caramel malt followed by some light smoke, grain, and a light citrus zing that I notice most near and through the finish.

Further sips in and I'm noticing more of the smoke and that's a good thing as I'm a big fan of Smoked Porters that have a good smoke presence. Nice medium mouthfeel here and the carbonation is light...just right for the style me thinks.

It's a little sweeter than the others examples of the style that I've tried but I can't complain about it because Ithaca took it to a certain point and no further; another words, it works very nicely for me and it's a very drinkable Smoked Porter. I wonder what direction some aging would take it...but not too much. This one is good to go fresh!

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Photo of beerluvr
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light nicely lacy tan head settling over deep ruby/brown liquid. Great smoky nose here...not too weak, not overpowering either with light chocolate/coffee and some light phenol "Band-Aid" aromas. Taste is a perfect combo of smokiness, chocolate, sweet malt and adequate hoppiness, wonderfully balanced. Finishes complex, smoky and bitter...one of the better examples I've had.
Thx to HappyHourHero for the bottles.

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Photo of Rudgers73
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was pleasantly surprised to see this beer along with the Belgian amber in my sampler pack. Good job Ithaca...

Pours a very deep brown color with muddy, reddish brown head. Smells like a sturdy porter with a ton of roasted, burnt malt and a nice equivalent amount of hops to balance. The taste is spot on with this one. I have had a few smoked beers, mostly porters, but a couple stouts, and a really interesting wheat bee that Victory made for a one-time-deal and was amazing so that really pissed me off... but that's another story. I have come to find out in my own experience that you can smoke any beer, but to have the right smokey flavor is key. It needs to be slid onto the pallet just right, it needs to work well with the hops, and it needs to linger right. I think that this porter does most of these things extremely well, especially the linger. There is a quality porter to be had here with nicely balanced aspects you would expect from a good porter, and the smoked flavor is really complementary of that. There is a nice hickory smoked, raw, campfire taste to it that reminds me of drinking beer in the fall next to a campfire freezing my ass off. Perfect.

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Photo of atr2605
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a very dark brown, almost black with a tan head with average retention
S-smokey and roasted malt with a sweet caramel malt in the background, low hop aroma
T-Very similar to the aroma with the smoke carrying through all the way to the finish, very pronounced but not over bearing. The sweetness of the malt balances quite nicely.
M-medium bodied
O-A really nice porter. I'm not a big fan of many of the ithaca beers but this one is great. Has nice flavor and is well crafted

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Photo of Buckeyes67
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle

The Gorges Smoked Porter has a dark brown color which you would expect. The tan colored head disappeared rather quickly and left no lacing behind. It smells like a camp fire and I didn't think it would taste good because of how strong the smoke smell was but the taste was outstanding. Very good beer that went down smoothly.

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Photo of codewarrior
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz Singleton into an Ithaca Beer Co. Imperial Pint glass

Had a sample on-tap at the Ithaca Beer Co, and was the only non-excelsior beer i bought that day. The woman at the brewery said it was "BBQ in a glass" and she wasn't far off. One of the most tolerable richly smoked porters I've ever had.

A: Pretty dark. Beautiful dollops of thick head that dissipate rapidly.

S: Smells smokey and rich. Like hickory-glazed pork.

T: BBQ in your mouth! Seriously rich undying smokiness all the way through. Flavors underneath ungulate from fatty to sweet and then to smokiness throughout. Finish lasts for days. Would have problems pairing this, ate with a sandwich and the sandwich was thoroughly dominated. Beautiful taste here though.

F: Thick, and rich.

D: Damn strong. Damn good.

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Photo of Brenden
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is another I had a few days ago; I'm still catching up on notes.

This beer is quite a dark brown that just allows some light to sneak in at the edges. A tan head stands one finger high, retaining its form well and leaving good lacing.
A bit of smoke and some earthiness come out strong in the aroma. The earthiness is clean, so to speak, being more of peat than dirt. Underneath are the dark chocolate and coffee aspects of the malts laying aside for the smoke to come out, and some barley/wheat are in there as well.
This beer is really excellently smoky. The purity of the smoke element is actually pretty impressive. There's little intrusion and none of the "meatiness" that can sneak in, just straight up smoke. There is just a slight tinge of sweetness up front; cold, it's hardly there; warmer, it really starts to sneak into the flavor, but even so is hardly detectable. I suppose some people may want a more complex beer, but I think for a beer like this to showcase the smoke is the most important thing, besides which it doesn't particularly lack character.
The body is medium, and this beer has a good porter feel to it. It's fairly smooth, but could use a bit more to it.
I'd pick this up over a lot of smoked beers out there; this is a great one if you want smoke without the grilled meat.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.14/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours into my snifter a deep dark brown bordering on black with a half inch of bubbling khaki foam atop the brew. Very little light escaping this one! Aroma is a bold mix of roasted dark malts alongside smoky, meaty, campfire-esque tones. Touch of chocolate and char but the smoke prevails.

First sip brings semi-sweet dark roasted malts upfront with notes of dark chocolate and dried fruit. Smoke billows in with a vengence of meaty, burnt wood and char flavors. Flows down with a kiss of bitterness and pervading maltiness. Smoked flavors linger on well after each sip...

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with great carbonation, almost silky and really easy to drink. Solid body, this is just a great smoked porter if you're a fan of the style. Another winner from Ithaca, glad I was able to try it!

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Photo of Stimack
4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Was able to get this brew in a mixed 12 pack from Ithaca from WegmanÂ’s when visiting family in Rochester. What is nice is that this is a different mixed 12 pack than I have seen from them in the past, Has 3 Smoked Porters, 3 stouts, 3 Flower Power IPA as well as 3 Winterizers which look to be a new offering from them. Anyway back to this brew.

The beer poured to a dark brown color, maybe could even say it was black (due to lighting conditions I can not say that with any certainty) with a frothy large bubbled head that had great retention and left a bunch of lacing down the sides of the glass. The aroma was of roasted and burnt malts that did give it a smoky scent rather than charcoal or burnt qualities. The taste was nice; notice a nice smoky quality about it up front that mixes extremely nicely with the other malt flavors with a smooth creamy feel. Also think I can pick up some brown sugar taste/smell intertwined as well as some dark like fruit qualities. Over all this is a very easy drinking brew, quite refined, I was thinking that it could be a little rough for some reason but this is a well put together brew. To date this is one of my favorite brews from Ithaca and would be right up there with any session brews that I would look for while sitting in front of the fireplace listening to music, etc.

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Photo of mentor
4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a three finger caramel brown head over a pitch liquid (very dark brown when held to light). Smells peat-smoked wood, cherry, fried mushroom, and roast. Comes across as dry.

Tastes teasing smoke over semi-sweet chocolate and gentle roast. Enough supporting malt sweet to keep the edge off the smoke and roast. Nice blackberry flavor from hops (Northern Brewer?). A sour tang at the end arises nicely from roasted malts and acidic carbonation. The aftertaste has some grassy hop retronasal and dries with a flavor a bit like after you've chewed on one of those chocolate-covered coffee beans.

Medium on the tongue, but has a creaminess that's quite enjoyable. Moderate carbonation. There is no overly dominant flavor in this beer. Many of the flavors work well together. Very drinkable for a smoked porter. Well done to keep the smoke the primary feature without it dominating.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is one smoked up porter, pours a pitch black hue the body is deep as night. The head is light tan head with a fine speckled lacing left behind down the sides of my pint. Aroma deep smoked malts similar to beers from Bamberg, enjoyable hints of charcoal, smoked meats, and dark roasted malts nearly burnt malts. Flavor a creamy dark beer with a pleasant smoked malt finish the real deal beer very enjoyable winter seasonal far from the mainstream holiday spiced ale thank God. Dark chocolate melted and infused with liquid smoke, tones of dark caramelized brown sugars drizzeld on thin sliced smoked ham and a touch of morning black coffee sipping smooth. Sorry, I'm a bit graphic on the flavor, but smoked meat has to be there in some detail because of the wide varieties of options available equally wide variations of smoked beers out there. Medium bodied even carbonation with a dry/semi sweet finish, hard to explain the feel on the palate but the smoke sure does linger. Overall impression is a good one, it's just a complex beer to wrap your palate around plan on a six pack purchase to truly understand this beer, plus it's that good.

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Gorges Smoked Porter from Ithaca Beer Company
3.81 out of 5 based on 196 ratings.
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