Gonzo Imperial Porter | Flying Dog Brewery

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
Gonzo Imperial PorterGonzo Imperial Porter
2,975 Ratings
Gonzo Imperial PorterGonzo Imperial Porter

Brewed by:
Flying Dog Brewery
Maryland, United States

Style: Baltic Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Gonzo is big, bold, and beautiful like the man it was brewed in honor of – Dr. Hunter S. Thompson. Roasted chocolate, coffee, and vanilla malt flavors are balanced with a unique hop bite. Buy the ticket and take the ride by pairing it with blue cheeses, smoked meats, BBQ, chili, chocolate and coffee desserts.

ABV varies.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-04-2005

User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 2,975 |  Reviews: 1,492
Photo of Zylod
3.83/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of JonnyCastle
4.39/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of gwydno
4.13/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of rickklein9
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of claminat420
4.37/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12oz. bottle dated vintage 17CC

Appearance- from a hardy pour it's the typical porter/stout color with a light brown frothy head. leaves decent lacing.

Aroma- chocolate coffee. maybe some slight caramel mixed with molasses. has a slight soft bubblegum note kicking from the yeast. really good.

Taste- just like the smell. abv is well hidden.

Mouthfeel- medium/ heavy bodied. good carbonation. has a weird dryness.

Drinkability- will gladly drink this again down the road.

Overall- solid beer for the style. the only negative thing I can say about this brew is the weird dryness. if it's from the bitterness it's a funky bitterness.

 640 characters

Photo of Tundra335
3.19/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of CTHomer
4.05/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: opaque; very dark brown in color; 1+ finger dark brown head that receded to a wispy cap; nice lacing;

S: milk chocolate, a little spice, deeply roasted grains;

T: coffee, dark chocolate, and tobacco; mild to moderate bitterness on the finish;

M: medium to full bodied; moderate carbonation; moderately dry finish; alcohol is slightly warming;

O: nice complexity in the flavor;

 383 characters

Photo of Spoda1983
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.99/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It pours jet black leaving a half inch white foamy head that fades fairly quickly to a film covering the top of the body inside my nonic. Minimal lacing is left. The smell has some coffee, chocolate, alcohol and light malts up front. The taste is bitter and boozy with the coffee and alcohol coming in strong. It leaves a dry aftertaste and has a bitter finish. The palate is about a medium with nothing harsh on the tongue. Overall, I like this as a Baltic Porter. I’d have this again.

 488 characters

Photo of joaopmgoncalves
4.06/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured to a tumbler glass.

A: The body is pitch black. The head is light brown having a one finger thickness, showing some good retention and minor lacing.
S: The aroma is strong of coffee, for a Porter, however, an Imperial Porter, this is very cool to have a more prominent aroma instead of the light and minimal hints that a good Porter usually shows. In the back, just a small hint of alcohol.
T: The taste beings with roasty touch, somewhat sweet somewhat bitter, having a good connection towards the not-to-prominent hops. It's balanced. The coffee flavour is present everywhere but it tastes more like a Nescafe, instant coffee, which is funny but not fantastic.
M: Body is medium. Carbonation is good. Bitterness is low, as it's supposed to, alcohol is just a bit high.
O: Interesting and good Imperial Porter. Would just love if the coffee flavour could be more true to coffee instead of instant coffee.

 913 characters

Photo of Vader444
3.9/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of socon67
3.86/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of pat61
4.29/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

L: bright dark brown producing a small tan cap with poor retention.

S: fruit, floral, light coffee with some cocoa. The hop aromas are medium to medium low,l the malt aromas are medium low and the yeast aromas are low.

T: The flavors start clean and smooth with a hint of fruit quickly followed by a wave of chocolate. It starts lightly sweet and then it dries out with chocolate and coffee notes and a little grainy astingency. The bitter from the grains and the hops pleasantly lingers. the mild sweetness provides balance. There is nothing harsh or burnt.

F: It has a medium to medium full body with medium carbonation and very faint warming.

O: This is a very drinkable beer that is high in flavor and easy to drink.

 727 characters

Photo of BJB13
3.97/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip style pint glass.

Awesome head on this one! Two fingers of tan, heavy foam sits above a blackish body that lets very little light through the root beer colored edges. The head eventually settles to a half inch, leaves sticky lacing all over the place and hangs around for the duration. Unfortunately the nose is rather weak, offering only slight hop and roasted malt aromas and a touch of alcohol. The taste is good but straight forward, good bitterness from hops and roasted malts front to back with a little heat through the finish. Nothing too complex. The body is medium and the carbonation is medium to high, just enough to give a little bit of tongue bite.

Not bad but I expecting it to be more robust.

 745 characters

Photo of generallee
4.12/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of SGR1220
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of EmeraldMist
2.26/5  rDev -43.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2

Look - Pours dark brown with two fingers of tan head, good retention, no lacing.
Aroma - Coffee, perfumey hops, alcohol, caramel
Taste - Roasted malt, oily leafy hops followed by a huge wave of bitterness, hop forward, tangy, sweet alcohol, sugary chocolate.
Feel - Medium to full bodied, fizzy carbonation, oily, alcohol warmth from start to finish.

Overall - Not what I look for in a porter.

 394 characters

Photo of Jim_Benz
2.81/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

This is okay at best. Alcohol dominates taste and smell to the point that it's difficult to discern more subtle flavors typical in a porter. As such, this beer is way overpriced and disappointing. But I imagine you could get hammered drinking a six pack. Will not be buying this one again.

 289 characters

Photo of daveinthed
5/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of Ahypercube
4.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Procured from a local Vons, while searching for a new stout to try. An IP is close enough.

L: Pours a little thin, but very dark. Charcoal black with amber edges. Lightly carbonated, only a half centimeter of head rose from a moderate pour, but the lacing is widely arched and elegant, and a cinnamon-tan ring lingers on the glass.

S: Mmm... faint roast coffee, fudge, and molasses laced with tendrils of sour lemon and cherry that cling to the nose and linger, a little bit of floral character flaring-up on the finish along with the roast. Hoppy for a porter. Some may find the level of sourness off-putting. Personally, I like the sour (although most porters do fine with much less).

T: Yum. Roast (as it should be) is center stage throughout with the fudge and molasses sweetening the middle, then pear, plum, lime and grapefruit pull it into a sour finish. It's rather tough to distinguish the fruity character of the hops with all that roast coffee and chocolate. It almost makes it seem pointless to make such a hoppy porter at all, as most people may not notice, and those who do may even find it conflicting. But I digress.

F: Feels as thin as it looks, but it's smooth, light, and has a refreshing level of dryness, so B+.

O: A very good porter. Complex, and though not as well-balanced as some, its heart is in the right place: much like the late Dr. Thompson.

 1,376 characters

Photo of StevenH
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of DanGeo
3.89/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of kkazemi
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of breardon1776
3.83/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Benish
3.57/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Gonzo Imperial Porter from Flying Dog Brewery
Beer rating: 4.02 out of 5 with 2,975 ratings