Chief BlackHawk Porter | Tyranena Brewing Company

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Chief BlackHawk PorterChief BlackHawk Porter

Brewed by:
Tyranena Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-15-2002

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Reviews: 173 | Ratings: 349
Photo of ordybill
4.85/5  rDev +26%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 12 OZ bottle into a pint glass. Pours pitch black color with red highlights in the light with a small tan head. The aroma is roasted malt and coffee with a little chocolate. The taste is roasted malt with coffee. An outstanding porter.

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Photo of kmpitz2
4.6/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz stubbie. The brew is a deep brown color that is only betrayed from black by light creaping in at the edges of the top and bottom of the glass. A 2 finger tan head falls quickly to a quarter-inch over top. The dark color makes it hard to check clarity on this one. Just a few stray bubbles are seen in the brew. The aroma is a light coffee and some sweet chocolate. There is not a lot going on in it, but what it brings sure smells nice. The flavor is initially coffee, with a distant pine hop note that crescendo's at the finish. I really get a lot of coffee all the way through this one, and get a mild to moderately strong (pleasing) bitterness on the finish. I really enjoy this brew. Mouthfeel is moderate with a moderate carbonation that serves to break it up a little more than expected. Overall, this is quickly becoming a go-to beer for me when I make my way north. The big flavor and approachable alcohol level make this one an excellent session porter in my book.

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Photo of scaliasux
4.52/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance - Very dark brown. Opaque. Short brown head that persists.

Smell - Roasted malt. Chocolate aroma very prominent. Appetizing.

Taste - Dark roasted malts dominate. Coffee with a touch of chocolate. Toward the dark side of porters. Finishes with a nice dose of sour hops.

Mouthfeel - Medium. Well Carbonated.

Drinkability - Tyranena's one of the best around. This doesn't disappoint.

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Photo of Bighuge
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark, dark shade of ruby. Beautiful creamy brown head that retains nicely. Very nice bittersweet chocolate tones on the nose. This is one great tasting porter. Huge notes of bittersweet chocolate. Great roasted and burnt malt tones. Coffee bean seems present to a small degree. The mouthfeel is smooth and velvety. Very easy drinking porter. This is one of the elite porters in my book.

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Photo of Winter
4.48/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

If you enjoy porters, this one is truly a gem. Pours near black in color with garnet hues and a brown creamy head. Thick sheets of lacing coat the glass. Aroma consists of sweet cocoa, malt and some dark fruit. Rich, full-bodied mouthfeel. Taste consists of burnt malt and dark chocolate. The middle is very dry. It really does have a nice bittersweet taste to it. The sweet maltiness gives way to a hoppy bitterness, that carries through and lingers in the finish. Highly recommended. I'm sad that I've waited this long to try it.

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Photo of ADR
4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown chestnut on a fairly dense pour, head is tannish and 1/4 inch to start. Laces in thin vertical drips. Roasty aroma, some sharp anise-like character that's pretty cool. Medium-bodied but the malt is lightly pickly to start, with some bitter chocolate and hard roastiness popping mid mouth. The hops are relatively subdued (for example, less than Summit Great Northern) and the beer finishes much more smoothly than it begins, with a pleasantly cocoa aftertaste. Much better on warming a little. This turns out to be an excellent Porter in my book, not hugely robust but not a lay-down overly sweet example either.

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Photo of beernut7
4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This offering is a rich heavy dark porter. Aromas of sweet caramel and roasted chocolate. Chocolate and light roasted malt are the key characteristic flavors of this beer. A nice quick hop presence is glimpsed by the palate with the finish. Overall a quality porter, one of the Midwest’s best.

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Photo of cokes
4.43/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Tyranena makes some damn fine beers and BlackHawk certainly fits this description.

Pours a jaw-dropping, mouth-watering glass of black liquid with just a few edges of mahogany. A dense creamy head cascades up from the abyss and sticks most of the way down.

Some subtle roastedness with a "hard-water" smell (for lack of a better term) that manifests itself in most of their beers. Liquorice backing.

Taste is hearty and satisfying. Robust with some roasted malts coming to the forefront. Strong bitter chocolate establishes firmly. Cocoa-coated grapes. Some hints of expresso and caramel as well. The hopping is light, but mingles nicely towards the finish to tie this up wonderfully.

Light bodied but creamy. Smooth and sensuous on the palate. Just a delight to drink as it coats the mouth with its flavors.

One is never enough for me. I love this stuff.
(note: considerably better on tap...some of my bottles have been rather thin and soapy)

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.41/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Appearance - a dark porter, light cannot get through the sampling glass. Three fingers of light mocha rise, leave a high water mark of foam, then drift down to a half-finger blanket.

Aroma - deeply roasted, almost charred grain and cocoa. As it settles, a sweeter set of aromas develop, like chocolate syrup or fudge batter. Fades a little but holds up for the most part.

Taste - pretty much the same as the aroma. Great roasty flavor that leaves enough room for the sweetness of the grain and chocolate flavors to play out. The balance is super. Finishes with a mild char aftertaste and some mild to moderate bitterness. Despite the reasonable abv, I sometimes detect a bit of warmth on the exhale, combining with smooth vanilla notes.

Mouthfeel - decidedly thin which isn't all bad, just not as full a body. Moderate carbonation levels provide the right amount of crispness.

Drinkability - a fine session beer, suited to cooler temps (meaning *anytime* in this fridge of a basement of mine...) Thx to jj21 for this beaut.

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Photo of longarm
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Excellent appearance, and the head is good and retains well, but I also poured this into a glass well suited for stouts/porters. The roasted grains are easily noticed on the nose. I'm catching a nice creamy sort of chocolate malt aroma. The initial hit of flavor is quite nutty, surprising and pleasing. Hop bitterness is noticeable, but in a good way, since the bitterness balances perfectly with the malt. Flavor and aroma hops seem to be there in spirit, but are not overwhelming which seems fitting for the style. There's a nice and dry finish on this beer initially, but a malty stickiness hangs around after several sips. I love how an exhale immediately after a taste brings the nuttiness back to life. Exceptionally well done and unique. An very fine example of the art of craft brewing.

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Photo of indy169
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a great surprise this was. Most porters seem to have a muddied nondescript blandness to them, but not here. Rich and robust colors and flavors with a clean smoothness rarely found in porters. I bought mine in Lake Mills so freshness may be an issue based on other reviewers. I loved it and will visit again.

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Photo of Sixpack595
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Solid black body with a good bit of tan head. Head is long lasting and laces fairly well. Aroma is seewt and well defined with lots of coffee and chocolate. Taste is very good, chocolatey with a roasty coffee flavor. Sweet in the beginning it ends with a well balanced bitterness. Carbonation is fairly strong, mouthfeel is a bit thin. Very drinkable, I would love to keep some on hand if it was available here.

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Photo of ClearDog
4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in an imperial pint glass.

Appearance -- Very nice looking! Pours a midnight black with a two finger dark khaki head that quickly dies down but does not disappear. Very watery lacing.

Smell -- Bitter chocolate with faint whiffs of hops. Just a little bit of coffee.

Taste -- Moderately bitter chocolate flavor. Coffee taste is not as strong. Kind of reminds me of chocolate milk, but not really I guess. It's a good balance between bitter and sweet with the bitter just a little stronger. Being a hophead myself I like this.

Mouthfeel -- Medium but not too dense.

Drinkability -- I like this porter very much. I could easier throw a few of these back. Very “sessionable.” The price is nice too at less than $6.50 a six-pack in my area. Recommended.

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Photo of dancinwillie
4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a dark brown, almost black, with mahogany highlights around the edges. Head is an inch of tan frothiness, the drops to a scant cover.

Smells of roasted barley, a little coffee and bittersweet chocolate too.

Roasted grains dominate the flavor, almost a smoky quality, and just a trace of the coffee notes come through. Very little sweetness, but maybe a bittersweetness, comes into play in the front as well. A small but noticeable hop presence rounds out this balanced porter. This is a good example of what roasted flavors should taste like.

Somewhat of a full mouthfeel, meaning not too thick, or too thin, and a medium dry finish, that invites another drink.

Drinkability is very high for me with this beer. I can, and often do drink 4-6 of these at a time. Is it the best porter in the world? Probably not, but it is very good, widely available in southern Wisconsin, and the price is reasonable. It doesn't have any hype to live up to, but it is a damn fine porter. Cheers!

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Photo of botham
4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a nonic glass. pours a slightly transparent black, with distant garnet highlights. a couple fingers of light tan head top this one off, with lacings aplenty.

smells of roasted malts, with notes of caramel malts, chocoalte malts, toffee, and coffee. a good mix, and a solid aroma for a porter.

taste is very roasted up front, with a moderate chocolate presence alongside. caramel and coffee are also present, but remain in the background. balance shifts slightly to the sweet side, but overall remains well-balanced.

aftertaste is dry and roasty. light hop presence.

mouthfeel is medium-heavy bodied, with a smooth and creamy texture. no complaints here.

drinkability is decent. this is a bold and full-flavored beer, which makes for a great tasting experience, but will fill up the stomach after one or two. still, this is a solid porter, and recommended for lovers of the dark and roasty brews. cheers!

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Photo of shaebs99
4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

big thanks to Genog for sending me this porter for my Powerball win

Pours almost completely opaque with a nice light brown head that leaves decent lacing throughout

aroma is mostly of roasted malt (coffee) and some sweetness

The taste goes right along with the nose. A good amount of coffee roastedness with a gentle sweet chocolaty-ness to back it up. It definitely hit the spot after a long day. This is probably a bit bigger in mouthfeel than most porters with a good balance of roasted and sweet taste. Safe to say that this is a touch sweeter than most of the porters I have had of late and it was quite delicious

I would gladly add this into my rotation...if only this were available to me.

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Photo of DAllspaw
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

poured from bottle into tulip, on recommendation from other BA for solid great lakes area porter. Since I can't get GL Edmund Fitz in Indiana, I grabbed this one and very glad I did.

Great smell, really nice roasted profile, some coffee and deep caramel but nothing too pronounced. Good substance, not as substantial as others I've tried, but not as thin either. A pretty solid porter, will consider it a go to until I try a few more.

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Photo of Wisconsin
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark black body that comes with a nice thick foamy head that sticks around for a long time.

S - Roasted coffee, bitterness chocolate and some sweetness that standout.

T - Great flavor with a smooth creamy style. The bitter chocolate and coffee really standout well but are not overwhelming. As the beer gets warmer it is less bitter and much more smooth and creamy.

M - The beer is very smooth and easy to drink throughout. The bitterness is very faint as the beer first hits your mouth and finishes with a nice creamy smooth bite that makes this a great brew.

D - This is a great porter and fairly easy to drink. I could have a few of these in a sitting.

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Photo of abents
4.24/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Pours a dark opaque brown with a little tan head and slight lacing.

Smell: Notes of coffee and chocolate with a nice malt background that makes this one great smelling beer.

Taste: Bitter chocolate blends into a smoother coffee taste and burnt malty taste. Balances nicely in the mouth very good job.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light, but very smooth with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability: Definitly one to consume a mass quanity of. Great taste and easy drinking make this a great beer.

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Photo of beveritt
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into an Imperial Pint glass. Label depicts a Native American man and relates the story of Chief Black Hawk. The beer is described as a "robust black and sharply bittersweet ale." No freshness date.

Appearance: A rough pour gave this one just shy of an inch of tan, big-bubbled foam. This settles to just a ring around the glass and some lacing. The beer itself is dark and opaque with a hint of reddish brown around the edges.

Smell: Slightly sweet, roasted barley bitterness, and strong aromas of unsweetened chocolate.

Taste: Roasted barley bitterness with a finish of medium hop bitterness. Undertones of brown sugar, molasses and cocoa. A very nice, long, lingering finish.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is less than average. A good level for a porter. Body is good.

Drinkability: I picked up a six pack of this on my most recent trip to WI, knowing that I have liked all of Tyranena's beers. I am not disappointed. Another great offering from Tyranena.

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Photo of dbtoe
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass

Look black body with a tannish brown head that stuck around until the end.

Smell a little roast and some sweetness. Not a strong smell pretty mild.

Taste roasted malt then a little sweetness and a mild bitter end. A very well balance of flavors that kept me drinking for another taste.

Feel a medium body with carbonation that was just right. Smooth

Drink this is a very drinkable porter. Goes down easy and enough flavor that I wanted another and another.

Comments probably a little bias because I've liked everything I've tried from Tyranena a lot. Chief BlackHawk is no exception, a very good beer. Drinkable and tasty.

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Photo of dlello2
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Nice medium-bodied dark brown (almost black) pour into a snifter. Finger of head leaves a soap bubble ring around the edges of the glass after 20 seconds.

S - Subtle smoky chocolate and espresso. Touch of sweetness/molasses.

T - Really smooth. Nice chocolaty finish is (oddly) the first thing that I notice. Maybe a touch of dark chocolate/espresso-bean bitterness in the middle of the tongue. Really well balanced!

M - Nice carbonation, and again, a nice smooth finish. Nice coating of the mouth and some dark fruit stickiness on my teeth.

O - While not overwhelmingly intricate, all of the pieces to this porter seem to fit really well! Definitely happy to have tried it (thanks Binny's new mix-a-six!)

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Photo of tavernjef
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This poured out as a great solid dark, leathery brownish black color with slivers of dark, ruby red highlights. A finger high head was produced of creamy, tannish foam that faded slowly leaving a thin haze on top with slight patchy lace. Smell is quite nice, although its a bit faint, but whats there is a sweetish, coffeeish aroma with some hop notes near the back. Taste is a mild, lightly earthy and deep, slightly burnt roasted malt in flavor with a hint of coffee and cocoa, and is sweetly smooth the whole way through with caramel notes lingering. Nothing really stands out to much in the flavors, its solid mildness is quite nice though with a solid medium, nearly heavy body and has a nice, slightly bittering tangyness, that gets carefully dry in the finish. Leaves a weird cottonmouth effect, which I actually find appealing. Another fine brew by Tyranena!

thanks jeffboo

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Photo of GuyFawkes
4.18/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Unknown vintage; drank October 2014 @ the Yarchives.

Poured from the bottle into a glass.

Brown/black hue.

Hot chocolate head; strong lace.

Chocolate syrup & fresh earth nose.

Medium thick mouthfeel.

Fresh earth & chocolate syrup up front with a mild hop bite on the finish; not overly memorable but a fine session porter.

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.17/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Devil's Backbone willibecher.

Picked up a bottle o' this brew during the aftermath of my DLD trip to Hoosierland. It pours an almost opaque black-brown with more than a finger of light khaki froth on top. The smell is straightforward, but very appealing: molasses, bittersweet chocolate, and maple syrup. It's unidirectional, but effective nonetheless. The taste is very similar, featuring chocolate, molasses, and a bit of mild coffee. The body is a heavy medium, with moderate carbonation and a very slight coating effect. Now, normally, I'd end with something crappily corny, like "All hail the Chief", but not this time...I'm feeling too classy for that sort of thing today. You're welcome.

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Chief BlackHawk Porter from Tyranena Brewing Company
3.85 out of 5 based on 349 ratings.
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