Chief BlackHawk Porter | Tyranena Brewing Company

very good
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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

For Trade:
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Reviews: 173 | Ratings: 350
Photo of dhannes
3.96/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A=Very dark brown, with a rich, foamy head that lasts for a minute or so.

S=Almost non-detectable...what there was smelled a bit on the sweet syrupy side.

T=A lighter can tell that this beer was brewed for Wisconsinites that tend to drink in quantities, as it is not very thick, as well as sweet and a bit salty. A great pair with pretzels or peanuts.

M=Light, not thick.

D=No sharpness, this thinner beer is good for when you want 2-3 porters per night.

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Photo of cpolking
3.6/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours pure black. It has an aroma of dark roasted malt, coffee and dark chocolate. The taste is rich and dark, coffee and chocolate, a bitter finish and not overly sweet. My chief complaint with many American porters is that they are too sweet for my taste. This one is not.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
2.88/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint.

A: Standard pour yields a .5 finger coarse, light mocha head with poor retention that dissipates into a cluster of bubbles at the top of the brew. Beer is a clear, near opaque, dark mahogany. Lacing is stringy and spotty with decent cling.

S: Nose is liquorice, bitter chocolate, roasted malt, and a subtle cherry tartness. Aromas are very muted and barely detectable.

T: Opens bittersweet chocolate, roasted malt bitterness, and overtones of cocoa powder and liquorice. Middle is invigorating as the carbonation rushes up. More liquorice in the middle and finish. Aftertaste is chocolate and roasted malt as this one sweetens just a tad. Aftertaste is a filmy coffee.

M: Light to medium bodied, moderately carbonated and light and actually quite crisp in the mouth. Finish is messy and sticky and aftertaste lingers.

D: An average porter. Nothing really stands out here as different in neither good nor bad ways. Body could use a bit of work and aroma is a bit too subtle but otherwise solid.

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Photo of jrallen34
2.75/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

On tap at the brew pub into a pint glass...A dark brown pour with a light tan head that rises about two fingers but falls way to quickly, at least the lacing is good...Light roasted aroma but just not a ton going on, bored...The taste is much stronger but that's not a good thing, tons of alcohol on the front, bitter from the alcohol not roasty bitter. There needs to be some sweetness to cut this.

An average porter at best.

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Photo of regspeir
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Acquired in a trade, this porter was served in a pint glass from a 12 oz. bottle. It pours almost black with ruby edges, and a smallish mocha head which settles to a coating. The lacing is quite nice, coating the glass thickly most of the way through. The nose is coffee and some bitter dark chocolate. The taste isn't that overpowering dose of coffe I tend not to love, but instead a nice blend of roasted coffee, dark chocolate, licorice, and some semi-bitter hops. The aftertaste is also not overpowered by the coffee. Mouthfeel is creamy, thinner than I expected, probably medium with moderate carbonation. This would be a nice session beer if it were available around here which sadly it is not. Worth a try if you can get it.

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Photo of jera1350
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep brown color with a decent tan head of suds.

Pretty light on the roast. Some chocolate and a touch of coffee.

Medium roast on the malt with a nice chocolate and coffee presence as well. Not strong and overpowering in any way, but the flavors make themselves known. A nice straightforward taste that's pretty clean cut.

Medium bodied and smooth. Very dry finish.

Drinks well and is a solid example of a porter. This is a good base porter and I love all of the ones that branch off of this. Tyranena knows how to make a porter.

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Photo of aasher
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It poured very smoothly and a rich, dark coffee brown and had a slight khaki head. The smell was very rich and malty. Great roasted coffee bean aroma. The taste too was very rich and mimicked a fresh cup of coffee. Again very malty. Mouthfeel was fresh and crisp, medium. It was very drinkable and very tasty. It reminded me of the Espresso Porter from Palmetto out of South Carolina. Very good beer at a very good price.

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Photo of alleykatking
3.43/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle.

A- Pours a dark amber brown color. Light hues around the sides of the glass. One finger eggshell color head has good retention and sticks around for a short while. Streaky lacing on the sides of the glass but nothing to stare at in awe.

S- Aroma a little muted I thought. Roasted malts with a hint of chocolate in there. No real hopping at all in the aroma along with no distinct coffee smell as well. A little bummed out with the aroma I will be honest.

T- Roasted malts from the get go pair off with a light chocolate flavor although not very strong at all. Some light almost bready malts with a hint of burnt toast to it. This comes back into a chocolate flavor with light burnt notes to it...well more roasted than burnt.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is good for the style. Clean overall flavors. Blended well flavor wise for a porter. Roasted malts left on the palate with a light chocolate pairing left on the aftertaste.

D- Average porter with great drinkability. I do like this beer and plan on drinking more of it. Nothing over the top but still very good.

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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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Photo of katan
4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz into a pint

A - Pours a very dark color, with only just a light amount of light appearing around the edges. Head formation, is quick, and well retained at about 1-2mm.

S - Light combination of malts, 2 row sweetness, some roasted barley, and a hair of chocolate. No hopping detected.

T - Starts off with the malty sweetness, overtaken by a roasted barley and chocolate note. Edgy, sometimes grainy. No hopping, bitterness is balanced. Some bready yeast notes. Finishes with a chocolate, slightly charred note. The longer it sits on the tongue, I do pick up more of whatever hop was used to bitter this.

M - Moderate beer body - accompanied by a decent carbonation profile. Aftertaste leaves a clinging burnt note on the tongue.

D - Easy drinking porter. ABV is manageable. Flavors are well integrated - bitterness does build if you are looking to session. Not filling.

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Photo of pasdachuri
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark, reddish brown with a creamy white head. A little lighter color than most other Porters.

As expected a coffee scent but rather bland and not much presence.

Sweet chocolate malt and coffee upfront with a slight vanilla and roasted grain finish.

Pretty smooth, medium bodied, and well balanced.

Quite sessionable for a porter, nice flavor that is not taken overboard with a sweet malt or chocolate presence.

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Photo of homebrew311
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked this up in WI, this particular one is strangely not in IL-

A: Pours dark brown/black with little light passage and a generous two finger head

S:nose starts with a noteable hop presence follow by deep roasted notes including coffee, carob, dark chocolate and a touch of earthiness on the finish

T: the flavors are a little more tame then the nose suggests, nice balance between roast and hops, wish the roast was a little stronger, all flavors are nice

MF: thinner body for a porter with medium carbonation

D: a nice representation of the style with a decent hop presence. This is solid but not amazing. Nice everyday beer.

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Photo of Onenote81
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to BeerFMAndy for this great bottle!

Poured into a pint glass. Had with brunch. Pours a dark murky blackish-brown with thin tan head on top. Recedes to just a ring around the edge too quickly. Leaves some sip rings about halfway through the glass. Some ruby highlights on the edge. Dipping my nose into this one, I get some very sweet cream scents, light milk chocolate, roasted malts, and a bit of clean linens (?). Seriously. This smells really clean and fresh.

The body, while holding onto a crisp bubbly feel, is quite creamy and smooth. Aides in drinkability quite well. Great roasted flavors in this one. Backed by a bittersweet chocolate presence that is leaning a little more towards the sweet. Slight oily hop taste, but it is faint. Adds just enough of balancing sharp twang to this roasty/sweet beer.

I am glad I had this on my 'wants' list as it is one great Porter. Was exactly what I thought it was going to be. Well done, Tyranena, and thanks again, Andy.

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Photo of sweemzander
3.99/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint. No bottled date found. Thanks to BeerFMAndy for the bottle!

(A)- Pours a dark, almost black brown color. Produced a quickly dissipating gray head.

(S)- Wow, lots of coffee grounds & molasses; creamy.

(T)- Nice molasses & coffee with hints of raisins & cream.

(M)- A good carbonation level and balance. A light bitterness, yet a light creaminess too.

(D)- A no nonsense porter that delivers well. A solid example of the style. I could have a few of these.

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Photo of Bubba83
4.09/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thank you Kegatron for this bottle in a trade. The guy knows I love my porters. Pours a deep black with a surprisingly light off-white, slightly tan head two fingerwidth head. Creamy consistency to the foam and has excellent lacing and retention. It's fun to just swirl this around and watch the head coat the glass.

Aroma has lots of chocolate cake and some roast along with a tinge of smoke. I get a bit of vanilla latte here too. Slight hop aroma of background citrus. Overall I just want a bigger aroma.

Tastes about like it smells, with a lot of chocolate cake up front with vanilla frosting. Despite all the cakey flavors, it's not overly sweet, and the chocolate seems more like dark chocolate. Half way through there's some definite citrus hop flavor that competes with roast, as if they are battling over the finish. Well balanced.

Feel is spot on as well. It's just the right consistency, sort of an oily medium-thick concoction. The carbonation level is perfect, little bubbles sparkle on my tongue. If you're not careful, all the head could end up on your mustache. Almost gave this a perfect, and I'm not sure why it shouldn't be. Finishes somewhere right in between dry and wet.

Drinks really well, can't taste any alcohol and all flavors seem to be within balance, yet it's a bold flavored beer. Doesn't finish overly dry and at no point does it suffer the fate of many porters by ending with too much roast. I am seriously impressed with this beer. And to think, before Kegatron sent this out to me I hadn't even heard of this porter. Tyranena has proved themselves to me with this beer because it shows they can nail something this simple.

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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 Jayli
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Acquired from Beerbeagle courtesy of Nobody Wants to See a Beer Geek Naked 2 so a big THANK YOU goes out to him!

A: This beer pours a deep dark brown with ruby hues. A one inch of tan colored head sits on top. Retains nicely and leaves spotty wispy lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is of charred malts, bitter chocolate, some coffee notes and a hint of cream.

T: Taste starts with a burnt malt flavoring mingled with some bitter baker's chocolate. Taste then sweetens slightly with hints of cream, milk chocolate. Finish is coffee and hop bite.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation, rich and creamy smooth body.

D: Nicely blended, goes down easily, somewhat filling and a highly drinkable beer. The ABV on this one makes it one to sit with for a night.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

About 2 shades from black pour. A large foamed up head, off white climbed high, then settled to a ring. Swirls bring the head back.
Coffee is the dominant nose, with faint leather and chocolate whaffs.
Dark chocolate a coffee, slightly roasted, are the two main players in the flavor. A slight bite slinks out to a small pinch. It becomes a smoother beer in the end. Chocolate, dark bittersweet becomes more dominant. Soft finish. Solid porter.

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Photo of darklordlager
4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on-tap at the brewery. From notes:

Very nice malt profile, incorporating chocolate and roasted malt in reasonable quantities along with a nice dark-roasted coffee-like bitterness. It has medium-high carbonation but is velvety/creamy on the tongue. It is difficult for many brewers to get the proportion of roasted and chocolate malt right, and this one does just that. A well done American porter.

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Photo of cvfish
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - This beer poured a dark reddish brown color that produced a tan head which had a good deal of retention and laced the side of the glass moderately

S - The aromas of this beer had the usual Porter suspects, roasted malts, bittersweet chocolate, and some coffee

T - The taste of this beer was also your typical Porter, roasted malts, bittersweet chocolate and coffee. Some vanilla seems to pull through to change things up

M - The mouthfeel of this beer had a medium body and a moderate amount of carbonation

D - This Porter is good, but it falls a little short of the great mark, damn Edmund Fitzgerald Porter for ruining all other Porters for me

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Photo of nlmartin
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer came my way while on vacation in Minnesota. The beer was served chilled in an Imperial Pint glass.

Appearance: The body of the beer is dark brown with ruby highlights. The head is the color of lightly creamed coffee. The head was about a finger high and had good staying power. Nice rings of foam mark the beers passage from my glass.

Smell: Whiffs of smoke dance around the edges of the beer. As the smoke gives way a very pleasing moderately roasted and toasted aroma greats my nose. Doesnt go into the realm of coffee but has plenty of molasses and cocoa peaking about. Nice bittering finish to the taste.

Taste: The beer has very nice brown sugar light roasted flavors, cocoa, molasses bit of nuttyness.

Mouthfeel / Drinkability: Not exactly robust in my view. The body of the beer is just short of medium. The carbonation is present enough to get the job done. This is a very nice throw back beer that would see its way in my line up on occasion.

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Photo of beerwolf77
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Tyranena imperial pint glass the beer is dark brown bordering black. A full two inches of mocha head fills the top quarter of my glass. A decent amount of lace is left lingering around the edges.

The aroma is a rich mix of chocolate, roasted/burnt malt, coffee and a hint of hops. A very robust nose overall for a beer that's over a year and half old.

The flavor is a bold mix of hops, dark chocolate, black coffee and smoked malt. The bitterness is sharp at first but seems to smooth out in the finish.

Medium to full body with moderate carbonation. Fairly chewy.

Overall a nice american porter. To be fair to this beer I will have to revisit it fresh.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into an Imperial Pint. Bottled on 17APR08. Yes. 08. This should be good...

Thanks to the old fart Beerwolf77 for this old beer!

A - A tall, quiet pour reveals the beer is clear despite becoming opaque black in the glass. A small light-tan head comes up right away to drop back down to a thin sheet of foam and a ring with small bits of lacing.

S - A small bit of smoke surrounds the roasted malts quiet nicely. It contains a rich bready feel with a hint of molasses and cocoa. Very good smelling for it's age.

T - Again, despite its age, it's still as robust as ever! Rich and creamy roasted chocolate malts with a wisp of smoke and a dry, bitter finish. No hop flavor here.

M - Initially creamy and smooth with a medium-full body, the carbonation spike to it signals the change to a dry and lightly bitter finish.

D - A very all-around solid beer even with over one and a half years on it. Good drinkability but not excellent. Very enjoyable as an anytime beer even better with a chocolaty desert.

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Photo of Kegatron
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a deep brown/near black, with 2 large fingers of mocha colored foam. Retains with a solid creamy 1/2 finger, leaving some big frothy lacing back that sticks. The aroma has plenty of roast and coffee notes, which fills the nostrils. A strong tinge of citric hops mixes with chocolate and caramel character to give this a sweet tangy pop in the nose. Very roasty overall here, with a real burnt toast thing going on.

The taste is very dark in the mouth, with bitter roast, coffee, and hops. Sweeter notes of cocoa, caramel, and citrus gives the profile a chewy balancing nature. Finishes bitter and dry. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with more of a bubbly creaminess to the carbonation and then a flatter feeling silkiness underneath that moves that bigger sweetness along. Despite the richness here, this stays very easy and nicely drinkable.

All around solid American Porter here, with a deeply roasted and bitter (but still balanced) character that I really dug. I would get into this one often if it was local to me.

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Photo of sliverX
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Received in a trade with FrankenBrew, thanks Nick
Poured a deep rich brown with ruby hints around the edges in the light, small tan head that faded to a thick ring around the edge
Smell is rich coffee and dark chocolate with each breath alternating between each dominating
Taste - WOW did not expect this to be so bitter, coffee bitter not hops bitter with a slight dark chocolate bite at the end, just a bit too aggressive on the coffee front for me
Mouthfeel is medium to light, the bitterness keeps making my mouth water
Drinkability once you adjust to the "sharpness" of the beer its pretty good and wouldn't mind if this was a locally available selection

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Chief BlackHawk Porter from Tyranena Brewing Company
3.85 out of 5 based on 350 ratings.
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