15th Anniversary Smoked Porter | Alley Kat Brewing Company

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15th Anniversary Smoked Porter15th Anniversary Smoked Porter
21 Ratings
15th Anniversary Smoked Porter15th Anniversary Smoked Porter

Brewed by:
Alley Kat Brewing Company
Alberta, Canada

Style: Smoked Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-16-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 21 |  Reviews: 20
Reviews by wordemupg:
Photo of wordemupg
3.53/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650ml bottle poured into pint glass mar29 2010

A dark brown with a purplish ruby glow when held to the light, decent thumbs width of tan head has decent retention and leaves a couple partial rings of lace

S not nearly as smokey as I thought it would be, mild coffee and something I just can't place, pretty faint though not to much going on

T a little more in the mouth, mild chocolate and it may be some smoked meat I couldn't place in the nose, some smoke but its mild

M rather thin but it creams up a bit due to good carbonation

D not a bad beer by any means, easy enough to drink and low enough in booze that you could drink a few of them

I may drink this again, the price is right but I was hoping for a bigger beer and didn't even look at the alc% when I picked it up. I was expecting more smoke but I'm not disappointed with what I got

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More User Reviews:
Photo of biboergosum
3.41/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

15th Anniversary bomber, coming in at 5.1% ABV.

This beer pours a clear, very dark cola hue, sporting nice red highlights, and with one finger of soapy light beige head, which leaves a thin ring of lace around the glass as it quickly disappears. It smells of lightly roasted bready, caramel malt. The taste is toasty, fruity light caramel malt, a hint of savoury meatiness, and a bit of earthy, weedy hops. The carbonation is on the low side, the body on the light side of medium, but smooth, and it finishes off-dry, the roasted fruity malt putting in a soft last call.

A nice, sedate, and fairly drinkable smoked porter - however, everything feels dialled down a fair bit, not what I would expect from an anniversary special.

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Photo of Sammy
3.6/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2005 swing top bottle. A dark coloured brew with great aroma of wood and caramel. Taste is very so-so and thin-watery mouthfeel. Like carbonated water, smoke flavoured. Maybe there is a bit of coffee and chocolate malt. The Deut rocks as maybe the best Alberta beer, then nothing close.
Had it 6 years later and it was a tad better.

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Photo of Orrshow
3.83/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – Has a very dark look with a reddish hue. Bubbles are on the side of my chalice with a thin cap of white head on top. Nice.

Smell – Smells of wood and smoke. There are very slight chocolate hints with almost suggestion of cherry.

Taste – The taste is very smoky right off the bat. There is faint chocolate with a touch of bitterness. Again wood and cherries come to mind as in the smell. It’s a good taste all in all.

Mouthfeel – Low carbonation is nice but more body require for sure.

Drinkability – This beer is extremely drinkable. Not overpowering whatsoever and very smooth.

Glad I picked this up. Last time I had Smoked Porter was almost a year ago. Alley Kat puts out yet another tasty batch of brew.

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Photo of eat
2.83/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was most intrigued by this bottle of any in the box I received from wordemupg as part of CanBIF6. Thanks for the great box Chris! Great selection from out west.

Alley Kat's 15th Anniversary Smoked Porter is an almost-opaque, dark brown colour. The head seems to suggest a weak body; an airy beige cover of foam which fades to almost nothing and doesn't leave much lacing. The colour is alright.

The nose is pretty weak as well, with some faded smoke, delicate dark malt and traces of chocolate and coffee. Smells pretty diluted, but what's there would probably be alright if it was intensified x100.

The flavour is a let down, to be honest. It tastes like someone left the water running in the anniversary beer tank. To be fair, there is nothing decidedly wrong with the flavour here, it's just so thin and weak. Everything is off in the background: traces of smoke, dark malt and chocolate, the slightest bit of coffee. Somehow, I was actually more disappointed after every sip; probably because this could have been a good beer.

To call the feel average might be generous; the body is too light for the style. Medium-light carbonation doesn't do anything to help.

Yeah...I guess this is "drinkable", in that it went down easy enough. Way too thin, watery, weak, etc. What kind of way is this to celebrate any kind of anniversary? Is a 15th anniversary considered to be the "water" anniversary?

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Photo of elricorico
3.6/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Made a visit to the Alley Kat brewery for a drop in tour and had this beer out of the keg. Found that there was more body to it, and the smell had more to offer than just the smoke. The taste seemed a bit more uniform as well, instead of the big early hit of smoke then mellowing, there was a more balanced taste throughout. Had it side by side with a Chat-O from the bottle, and I'd say I liked this a touch more today. Some of the scores are a higher for this beer on-tap as a result.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
2.95/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a light black color beer with a medium head with below average retention. Aroma of faint smokiness is identifiable with very little of malt. Taste is smooth with some smoke though not as much as there should be. Very little hops seems to have been included in here and body is thinner then expected. A bit too light overall for my liking even though I would be tempted to give extra point for trying to be different.

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Photo of Garin
4.14/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Out of a swing top bottle, I pour a opaque black beer with a hint of dark leather brown around the edges. A thin and fizzy head forms on top.

Chocolatey and roasty aromas mix in with nutty caramel, with a nice smokiness rising up. The flavour is subdued fruitiness with a light touch of smoke in the finish. This is a very smooth and soft porter, with subtle flavours throughout. I love the light touch of roastiness, the very slight charring, and the suggestion of smoke. To me, this is a smoked porter done with a very restrained hand. There is no cloying, lingering sweetness or thickness -- a nice light tartness at the end cuts it off. There is a nice caramel flavour building as I get through the pint.

This beer also feels great to drink -- silky smooth and easy drinking. I am thoroughly enjoying this pint, and I could easily drink this in abundance. I'm a big fan of porters, and this may be my favourite one ever.

It is probably apparent that I am especially fond of the restraint that was shown in creating this beer.

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Photo of IronDjinn
3.95/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Alley Kat definitely got it right with their 2006 special edition of their smoked porter. So much that I felt I had to review it in light of my review for last year's batch.

Pours out a bit thin, but indeed pitch black, with mahogany highlights around the nimbus of it. Not much head retention, but I do get a thin deep tan layer of head while it lasts.

Charred wood up front on the nose, a quick dose of green apple peel, nut shells and more wood, along with a densely spiced almost meaty quality.

Rich robust dark malt at first, it's quickly overcome by char and mesquite well throughout the middle, finishing with a dry woody tone, almost a bit sweet at times, hint of dry apple fruit (as opposed to juice), then with a light lingering mesquite after taste. Definitely not an ashtray to be found in this smoked porter.

Although it looks a bit thin, the mouthfeel is full, but a low carbonation presence helps it go down smoothly all the same. Not creamy, not velvety, just full bodied.

Once again a very fine job on a smoked porter, only second to Calmut in my books, and it's closing in. A great pairing for game or grilled red meat. Even game fowl. A big thanks to TRAICH for picking me up a stray case of this from the backwoods after it had already officially left the shelves for their Summer Ale special edition. I had happily drank all of my own stash of it before it occured to me to review this year's batch as well.

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Photo of 3Vandoo
3.97/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A pitch black beer with tints of red dancing around in the glass, low head retention at all.

Smell, Oh lala, smoked it is, cherry smoked flavours with a deep molase smell and malt.

She taste very bitter and cherry like, the sourness probably comes out from the cherry. Hints of smoked comes at the end of the beer, but first you must endure the sourness bitter cherry taste then the smoked flavors

A weird porter, it was different.

Big mucho thanko to crwr for providing me a bottle

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Photo of ritzkiss
2.44/5  rDev -30.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

650ml bottle brought around by Colin - thanks man!

Pours a deep dark brown, hints of burnt amber in the light. Finger of tan head that quickly fades and doesn't leave much behind. Faint smoky notes, a hint of bacon bits, an even lighter hint of coffee and a touch of caramel. Same deal in the taste section... if you can actually find much of the flavor. So light all around, thin and watery... needs a much bulkier malt base. Light meaty smoke, weak coffee, hints of peat, caramel.

While I would add more smoke, I can understand a brewer wanting to go mild on such a unique flavor... but why create such a washed out thin, borderline drinkable mess as your celebration beer? Can't say I would try it again, there's just not much here.

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Photo of benbou17
3/5  rDev -14.3%

Photo of BigBry
3.62/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

475 ml flip top bottle, only has neck label with description. A very dark brown (almost black) pour, dark mahogany brown around the edges. Light brown, creamy head. 1 inch of bubbles, but they quickly recede to barely form a ring around the edge of the glass. Not much carbonation, basically flat by the time I was finished. There is definately a smoky smell of the cherry (quite recognizable) and pecan they use for smoking. The aroma is a bit sweet and fruity. The taste flavourful, but still less than I was expecting. There is smokiness of roasted malt, but more the taste of burnt wood (as opposed to the toasted chocolate malt in a stout). Some hoppy bitterness right at the end. The body/mouthfeel is thin and watery, still coats the tongue leaving a nice aftertaste.

Note to self: This beer has been re-released in a new 650 ml bottle for as part of Alley Kat's
15th Anniversary line up. I assume only the label / bottle size and changed, and not the recipe.

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Photo of thesilverhand
4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a 2000 vintage, enjoyed in January 2005. As Naerhu stated, thanks a lot to KBL Scott for making this (and others) available to us in Japan!

It's a really nice deep, rich brown. The aroma is all smoke - shocking! - but in a rich flavourful way. It reminds me a lot of a smoked cheese. Smoked gouda, I think. There are elements of a campfire...rich fresh woodsmoke.

The flavour is still smoky, but significantly more subtle and subdued than I expected from the nose. It's got a great malt base to balance all that smoky goodness. The smoke persists well into the aftertaste.

It's a big, rich beer. I doubt I'd want to drink it all night, but it's a really neat, tasty beer. Probably not one to go for unless you like smokiness!

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Photo of andrenaline
3.95/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a bomber into my pilsner glass. Enjoyed while I was smoking ribs on my Weber Bullet... Solid pairing.

A - Poured a thin layer of head with a little lacing. Deep red colour, almost burgundy in nature.

S - Strong malt scent with a bit of leather on the finish. There was a nice sweet caramel scent on this one too.

T - This was my first smoked porter, and I must say I'm quite impressed. The slight smokey after taste was quite enjoyable. Delicious toffee with a slight chocolate taste. Smoked malts come through on the finish.

M - Pretty smooth feel, not overly carbonated. Was a little surprised because there appeared to be more carbonation than there actually was.

D - Quite impressed with this one. Really glad I picked it up, and what a perfect pairing while your smoking your favorite meat dish!

Would recommend this one to anyone looking for a little twist in a porter. Nothing ground breaking, but quite enjoyable.

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Photo of Cwrw
3.8/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Seasonal for 2005, Alley Kat's Smoked Porter comes in a 475 ml flip-top bottle. The label says the malt is smoked with cherry and pecan, and also thanks "Jeff and Bryan" for smoking it. A tight and instantly creamy chocolate-milk head forms, with bubbles some large and some small. A fine, healthy layer remained throughout my drinking it. The lacing is extremely viscous, like paint. The beer is an extremely dark brown, but appears black in most light. I can definitely smell the pecan in the malt, as well as smoked ham. The cherry too is detectable. Besides those elements there are some very light espresso notes, chocolate sweetness, vanilla, leather and spices. The peaty smoke aroma predominates. Smelling closer reveals some astringent solvent-like notes. Excellent roasted qualities about the smell. The taste is a little less full than I imagined, but still quite flavoursome. Definite smokiness, peaty and roasted. Pecan again in the middle of the tongue, and saltiness in the finish, meatlike. The actual malt flavours seem only to come out at the very end of the finish, and hop presence is negligent. I was expecting the aftertaste to last a little longer. A slightly sour note begins after a few sips, and stays for the entire drink, and it limits the drinkability a little. The body is too thin and watery for the beer, but the carbonation is low and creamy. This is definitely a porter I would buy again, but I was expecting much more from it. Try it with sharp cheddar.

(2006 Edition-Wonderful tobbaco aromas and strong smoked malt make me rate this a little higher. The 2006 Spring Version is less creamy and more smoky.)

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Photo of Shadman
3.61/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Looking forward to more 15th aniversary brews from these guys...

One dark porter with some mahagany highlights aroound the edges when held up to a light. Very nice tan head and lacing. Good retention.

Some decent roasted malts, smokiness is quite muted.

Front end is quite watery and bland. back end is where flavour country begins. hint of sourness, coffee, smoked meat, and rnough hop bitterness to make it reasonably interesting Finish is dry and slightly chalky.

Starts thin, but moves to full and smooth very quickly.

Certainly drinkable, like most of their beers are.

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Photo of Naerhu
3.52/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A big thanks to KBL Scott for bringing this beer all the way to Japan!!!

Had this 2000 vintage in January of 2005.
Darkest brown with a lovely amber tint.
Smells of bacon.
Great maltiness balance wonderfully witht the smokyness. With the intensity of the aroma, I thought I was going to be in for a mouth full of bacon fat, but this is a great beer. Nice slick mouth feel. I could drink this all night.
It is a shame that these are not available in Osaka.

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Photo of MAB
3.74/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Like all of their brews, Alley Kat has attitude. This is no exception.
I doubt if you;ll find this available anywhere any more- I last had one in 1999.
It is like drinking from an ashtray- this is a seriously smoky beer.
It grabs you right away, demands your attention. Then you start to wonder if you'd ever get through a 6 pack of them...
Fun to try, though.

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Photo of bobsy
2.83/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Pretty bottle shared by Colin - thanks man!

Pours a deep mahogany with a finger of tan head that left some slippery streaks of lace as it faded to a film. Smoky aroma, with a bit of meat and grain to it. Pleasant and straightforward, but without the depth of say the Alaskan Smoked Porter. Flavour follows suit and is fairly one dimensional. Smoked malts overlay mild coffee and bittersweet chocolate tones, which would be fine if everything wasn't so damn watery and washed out. The mouthfeel really lets this one down, and its lacking the meatiness and heft that really befits this style. Far too watery and with a mediocre carbonation that adds very little.

As a beer it remains drinkable, and there's some worth to it, but its a complete failure for the style. Why on earth would someone choose this as a 15th anniversary beer?

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Photo of fisherman34
3.25/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown in colour with a medium amount of carbonation. Aromas are of mild smoke and cherry. Flavor wise, the cherry plays a surprisingly dominant role, with some chocolate, caramel, and nut elements taking a back seat. The smoke is there too, but not in any large capacity. The sourness gives the impression of a thinner body. I couldn’t detect any of the advertized peat flavors or aromas. Lots of unexpected and bizzare elements to this beer, and while it’s not really "to style", I fould it pleasing to drink.

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15th Anniversary Smoked Porter from Alley Kat Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.5 out of 5 with 21 ratings