Leinenkugel's Snowdrift Vanilla Porter | Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company

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Leinenkugel's Snowdrift Vanilla PorterLeinenkugel's Snowdrift Vanilla Porter

Brewed by:
Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by TheSixthRing on 11-03-2012

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Reviews: 246 | Ratings: 1,760
Photo of beerguy04
3.68/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours dark brown with a small tan head. Smells of roasted malts. Taste is roasted malts as well as, vanilla. Mouthfeel is medium. Overall, this is the best beer from this brewery.

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Photo of IvoryFoxhole
3.68/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle from 2/2016, so we'll see what happens. Poured into Carton Dubvariant glass.

Aaand honestly, it's not all that bad. It doesn't touch the top craft brews, but it's basically what's advertised. Nose of roasted malts and vanilla a bit too faint (age?), but taste basically comes through. Mouthfeel way too watery, but you still get some roasty goodness and vanilla on the finish.

For a mass-produced porter, it's OK. Go ahead and give it a shot.

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Photo of D1noB
3.21/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Good winter beer, the heaviness you'd expect from a Porter, slight chalk taste, vanilla all the way through and a hint of coffee. A middle of the road beer.

Taste Rating in Words: Somewhere between making a snowman and shoveling the snow on your driveway.

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Photo of Nightmare1972
4.35/5  rDev +28.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Leinenkugel may not be known for great beer but this is a really good porter, poured a great head,aroma and taste. Will be a go to for me in the winter months at the local bars.

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Photo of Libeertarian
3.93/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From notes taken 05/23/16:

This is a couple months past “expiration” but with the roastiness and fairly high ABV, I am not worried. As likely as not it has improved with age. On the other hand, much longer and it would start to go bad, since it is still less than the 7-8% threshold. Very dark brown but quite clear with reddish hues. Head is foamy, fine, a toasty, golden tannish-brown, and retains well after settling. Scattered legs. Dark fruit, mild roastiness, woodiness, alcohol on the nose, not so much vanilla. Roastiness is a little more overt on palate, with more dark fruit (plums, cherries), a little distinct alcohol, and then vanilla, but more in the background than other flavors. Just barely full-bodied, quite smooth with medium, fine, sudsy carbonation, slightly warming sides of tongues and mid-cheeks, chewy, mouth-coating, somewhat astringent. Underrated beer. To be sure, I am biased in the extreme toward dark beers, but I think faux-micro brewers like Leinie, and beers that defy style guidelines are biased against. Plus, mine was slightly aged.

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Photo of Squire123
3.68/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Color of dark brown with orange highlights, minimal cap and no noticeable lacing.

Aroma of roast malt and vanilla with a hint of chocolate. It's a dryer sort of vanilla yet rich.

Taste is more vanilla forward than in the aroma. Roast malt butressed by something like molassas though it doesn't taste sweet. The flavor is good but just very simple, it's as if they designed something darkish, vanillaish, not dry but not sweet, a middle of the road brew for those who wish to dip their toes into murky beer waters.

Full texture that is rich and creamy.

At 6% it's not a gulpable Guinness yet it's in that league flavorwise, or so the resident Guinness fan tells me. It does have an undemanding, approachable flavor that should please my guests except for those with a finely honed ability to spot roasted grain bitterness and are turned off by it. I don't find much of that myself except for a tinge in the aftertaste. It does remind me of Wintertime and a cozy fireplace.

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Photo of q33jeff
2.67/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

LOOK: Dark Black Pour. Small Head.
SMELL: The faintest of Vanilla aromas.
TASTE: Not much vanilla or anything else in terms of flavor.
FEEL: Weak Carbonation. Light and a bit creamy. Not really a good porter, but easy enough to drink.


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Photo of Offa
3.39/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a fairly good, enjoyable with a primary defect being that it is a bit too much on the sweet side, in addition to being fairly simple.

Deep red brown, almost black, with small pale tan head soon thinning to foamy ring.

Aroma is roasty prunes and coffee.

Taste is lightly sweet up front, then dryer but remaining on the sweet side. Dark raisins, mild coffee hint, light winy hint, finish of wet wood and vanilla beans. Feel is good and firm.

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Photo of PhillyRiver
2.84/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Today we pulled into Speedy's drive-thru and I asked for a case of my usual Yuengling Porter, delicious and inexpensive and local. The guy said, hey, we have a special on this other porter if you buy one case for $20 you get a second case free, because it's out of season (despite snow coming on Sunday). I was unfamiliar with this brewer Leinenkugel. I like Breckinridge Vanilla Porter but it's too expensive. So I bought this stuff and now have two cases of a beer I have never tried until this moment. WHAT WAS I THINKING? Well, look, I know we're not supposed to rate based on the price, and I didn't, but for 40 cents a bottle this stuff is great. Please do not pay much more than that. On the other hand, as a Minnesota friend said when I reported my transaction, Leinenkugel in general is "demotic" and great for "beerdration" while dancing. In other words, it is popular and sessionable. OK, the experience:
Poured from bottle into clean tulip glass.
Look: way too translucent for a porter. I like 'em black. It is a nice brawny (brown+tawny) color though. Piddling head.
Smell: I am not sure why there is a cherry smell in there.
Taste: Should this be called complex, or confused? It has many tastes - coffee, ashes, chocolate (all good); hint of vanilla (unimportant); cherry, cardboard (bad). I will reserve final judgment on the cardboard because the Yuengling, my usual at home, sometimes tastes cardboardy, sometimes not. I don't know if this is something that varies bottle to bottle, or depends on what I'd eaten previously, or what.
Feel: a little thin and fizzy. Still manages some creaminess, so it's not quite cola, but I understand why some reviewers here have said that.
Overall: My husband just walked upstairs and said, "I regret to inform you that despite our marriage vows, I am not going to be able to help you drink that beer." Damn.

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Photo of neenerzig
3.54/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer is on special at a bar my wife and I go to trivia at most Tuesday's, and this bar has a very limited craft beer selection so I figured what the heck? Poured out of a 12 oz bottle into a problem not glass, this beer pours a very dark amber/light brown color with deep ruby highlights. Has a slightly tan/off-white head that's half an inch thick when first poured that settles to a thick ring lining the inside of the glass along with a big spot cluster of surface foam. Not too much lacing. Aromas of some roasted caramel malts along with bits of coffee and chocolate. Rounded out with a bit of hops. Has a fairly crisp, smooth, medium bodied mouthfeel with a slightly clean and dry finish. An okay beer all around here.

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Photo of imanidiot777
3.42/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 2 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: very dark brown, head dissipates quickly and doesn't leave much lacing. Not opaque like most porters.

Smell: smells strongly of vanilla, much more so than most vanilla porters. Also some malt. I kind of enjoy the aroma.

Taste: also tastes strongly of vanilla, maybe a hint of coffee and/or chocolate.

Feel: smooth, not very carbonated, which is to be expected. Not bad but not great.

Overall: not as bad as people on here say, but not the best beer ever. I enjoyed it but wouldn't go out of my way for more.

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Photo of yuenglingfan101
4.95/5  rDev +46.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

an excellent beer overall. Nice dark brown blackish color to it. Small to medium head. Taste of hops and chocolate and other. A great holiday beer and it goes down quite smoothly

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Photo of Ssisselman
3.2/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I bought this in my search for a good vanilla beer. It's very light in smell and feel for a traditional porter. The flavor doesn't hit until it's almost swallowed. It's more on the sweet side but doesn't have a strong vanilla flavor. The malt flavors are noticed on the bottom and top rear sides of the tounge and give a traditional porter chocolate - coffee note taste. The sweeter flavor lasts at the back roof of the mouth and doesn't leave too strong of an after taste as porters go. I prefer IPAs but if you are looking into starting to like Porters this could be a good one to try as it's not as intense as others are.

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Photo of Imhopeless9
1/5  rDev -70.4%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

I wish I could give this beer a -5. Since I love porters, I decided to try something new. Because of this beer I will never try anything new again. Tasted like soy sauce and vomit. A waste of money. We should have been paid to drink this, and if I had known how bad it was, I would have left the money and the beer and run. I wouldn't wish this beer upon my worst enemy. If I had to choose between drinking this beer once and eating an entire jar of mayonnaise for the rest of my life, I would choose mayonnaise gladly. DO NOT BUY unless someone is forcing you to at gunpoint. Warn your friends about this garbage.

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Photo of johnnyd10vt
4.13/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I know this is a MillerCoors product, so the beer snob in me doesn't want to like it, but I can't help myself. I love it.

Awesome light Porter, chocolate notes and very subtle vanilla, not too heavy. I could (and will) drink these all night.

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Photo of stevoj
3.21/5  rDev -5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Not bad. Vanilla in the aroma doesn’t mix as well as it does in the taste. Sweetness at first made me think of a baltic porter, but roast grains( and bitterness) are present under the vanilla. Slight bitterness on the palate, and overall mouthfeel is just a touch on the watery side. Otherwise, better than I expected.

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Photo of Brendan_Wren
4.03/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Dark brown, almost black.

Smell: Dark, coffee-esque, malty aroma

Taste: Smooth, and surprisingly easy to drink for a porter. I could see myself having 2 or 3 of these in a sitting. Malty, with heavy hints of coffee and just the right amount of vanilla. Delicious, but not overwhelming.

Mouthfeel: surprisingly pleasant mouthfeel. Goes down very smooth.

Overall: Solid choice for when you want something tasty but you only have time to run to the gas station. Worth the price, and I'd definitely drink it again.

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Photo of archyquaffer
3.56/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A moderate pour into a shaker pint produces about a ¾ inch head of a light tan color. The beer is a deep ruddy brown, but a bit pale for the style.

The aroma is spicy and a little buttery at the edges. The vanilla is subtle in the aroma, but more forward in the flavor, though it is not overbearing. Chocolate and caramel notes assert themselves as well. A note of spice is detectable as well, suggesting a touch of cinnamon and nutmeg, though this might be merely suggestive from the vanilla flavor. A nutty bitterness helps to balance out the sweetness.

I couldn't believe I hadn't reviewed this beer yet. It seems to me that Leinie's has toned down the vanilla from earlier versions, allowing the natural malt goodness to shine through a bit more. It's still a bit thin for the style.

App-3.25 Aroma-3.5 Flavor 3.75 Feel 3.25 Overall 3.5

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Photo of Mumps
3.06/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Dark brown, a little lighter than most porters I'm familiar with. Dark cream colored head that disappeared in a minute. Little lacing. Smell of sweet malt and coffee, just a hint of vanilla. Taste is much the same, which is fine. I was worried about too much vanilla, but was surprised. Mouthfeel is reasonable, on the thin side of normal porters, with lots of carbonation.

Overall this was a decent brew that fixed my porter craving. A bit pricey for what it was, but I'll live. Probably won't get again, but it my desire to try something different.

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Photo of Beric
3.53/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Serving: Bottle into pint
Served: 18 December 2015

Appearance: Pours a deep brown color, but not as dark as some other porters or stouts. Distinctive amber highlights around the edges. Poured aggressively, it yields a two finger dirty brown head that unfortunately collapses extremely quickly. Looks alright, but I wish the head would stick around longer.

Smell: Sweet malts, espresso bean roastiness, little to no perceptible vanilla in my opinion.

Taste: Similar to the nose- I didn't find a ton of vanilla in the beer, though it definitely was there a little bit. I'm glad they didn't overdo it though, since that could have led to a sickeningly cloying beer. Overall, the beer is dominated by a sweet malt backbone and a pinch of roastiness from the roasted malts.

Mouthfeel: Higher carbonation than many other porters/stouts, but that isn't terrible here.

Overall: A good beer, and one I could definitely drink a lot of, but nothing notable. I feel like this is up there with Guinness as far as availability and complexity goes- it's easy to find and doesn't taste like much, but given this or a Busch Light, I'll gladly take this in a heartbeat.

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Photo of dueserdo
4.1/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Just had this on draft. Much better than bottle. I consider this a light porter with just the right amount of vanilla. Next time I will fill my growler with this one.

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Photo of EmberDawn
4.53/5  rDev +34%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice dark color creamy texture with just a hint of vanilla to balance out the roasted chocolate flavors. Flavor notes are complex and distinctive while not being overpowering. Also if wonderful balance of aged and fresh brewed flavors. Nice and crisp with with an enjoyable warm bitterness at the end. This is a great brew for someone starting out into darker brews.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.36/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

lots of mass appeal attempt porters coming out this year that look to pale to even be considered a brown ale in appearance. not sure why thats a trend, but calling this a porter is a bit misleading. thin and as amber as it is brown in color, good head tough and lots of bubbles, fizzy even. it lacks the depth of a good porter in nose and taste. none of the roasted barley or specialty dark malts are there at all, and that earthy bitter base is really missing for me. as a brown ale type, it works better. some chocolate malt in here for sure, and it plays nicely with the vanilla, which while sweet, seems to be rather genuine, true to the bean. the vanilla is perhaps a tad over dosed in my opinion, covers up an already thin and absentee grain profile, so it seems like a flaw, but thats probably what they were going for with this one. on the bright side, its still kind of strong for what it is, and probably works for their idea of a winter warmer brew. this is fringe craft at best, but i dont hate this one as much as some of the new shandy gimmicks. could have no more than two, but i would recommend this to a vanilla lover that doesnt quite get in to the real dark ones. personally i wished for more grain layers here, more from the dark side. not enough body either for something called a porter.

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Photo of Tsar_Riga
3.63/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A fairly typical looking porter, with a distinct vanilla note over roasted malt foundation. A touch artificial, but not offensively so. The feel is thin, but there is nothing wrong otherwise. A drinkable pleasant brew.

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Photo of Tee76
3.22/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Decent brew, my only issue is how thin and watered down it was. Then again most of Leinenkugels beers are light and watery. It tasted fine and was easy to drink. I'd drink it again but don't expect anything more than an average porter.

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Leinenkugel's Snowdrift Vanilla Porter from Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
3.38 out of 5 based on 1,760 ratings.
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