Steam Train Porter | Snoqualmie Falls Brewing Company & Taproom

74 Reviews
Steam Train PorterSteam Train Porter

Brewed by:
Snoqualmie Falls Brewing Company & Taproom
Washington, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-22-2002

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Reviews: 74 | Ratings: 130
Photo of RedDiamond
4.02/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Snoqualmie is an historic train town and while the glory days of logging trains have faded, an enduring passenger line still runs to town as a popular tourist attraction. The old trains now line the tracks on the outskirts of town and are preserved as part of the local train museum. Steam Train Porter is named for these historic machines and reminds us that this beer style originated as the pint of choice among London cargo porters.

Steam Train emits a strong malted aroma of mixed chocolates with an equally strong flavor that moves through dry, roasted graininess before finishing with a long smoky tail. Impenetrably black. Very satisfying.

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Photo of jletts
4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Columbia City Alehouse in Seattle. Beautiful in the glass. Appeared dark brownish-black, reminiscent of used motor oil (this is a GOOD thing!). A yellowish, clingy head faded quickly. Lacing is prevalent.

The smell of this brew was powerful. It assaults your nose from a distance...not like those brews you have to stick your nose way down to get a hint of the subtelties of aroma, this one wakes you up like a freshly brewed pot of christmas blend coffee. I could literally smell it from two feet away. Bitter dark chocolate, powdered cocoa, and coffee fills the nostrils from afar. Some toffee and buttery brown sugar...sweet bitter goodness. The best aspect of this beer by far and the best smelling brew I can remember in a long time.

The taste was dominated by coffee, bitter cocoa and ashy peat with sour cherry notes. Weak dark chocolate fades fast into a distant taste of cocoa, coffee and spring water.

Mouthfeel was not what I expected from the smell. It was smooth, low carbonation, and a little watery.

Drinkability is excellent. More please!!

Notes: Does Snoqualmie make a bad brew? I can't seem to find one. Good stuff! Props to my home-town brewery!!!

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Photo of RJLarse
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I stopped at the Snoqualmie Brewery while on a business trip last week, and bought a bomber of Steam Train Porter to bring home. I poured this beer in to a pint tumber.

Pours a coal black color and is opaque. A bubbly camel brown two-finger head forms, and dissipates to a creamy thick film on the surface of the beer. The dissipated head is two-tone in color, both a light beige and a darker tan color.

The smell is fairly strong, with dark roasted malts, and some spices. Chickory maybe.

The taste if quite complex. There are some sweet chocolate malt flavors, with some zesty spices, pepper perhaps, and then very mild hop finish. Quite a taste sensation.

Mouthfeel is incredibly smooth, rich, full-bodied and buttery. Outstanding.

This is a very drinkable porter. It's not overboard on the bitterness, and has a very interesting combination of flavors. It's a fine porter, perfect for a gray winter day. I'll have this again.

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Photo of loren01
3.69/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap at an Irish Pub in Seattle, can't remember the name of it
A: Pours a translucent brown color, slight head, and lacing. Looks a little wattery/thin for a porter
S: Sweet malt smell, slight hop scent as well
T: Nutty, sweet, mild coffee flavor as well
M: Smooth, creamy and easy to drink
D: Apperance made me think it was more of a nut brown ale, because it didn't look like any porter I'd ever had before. Damn good beer though, would have this again.

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Photo of TheBungyo
4.35/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One thing there doesn't seem to be an abundance of are good porters and stouts in the northwest. I had high hopes for this one since I've enjoyed some really fantastic brews from Snoqualmie before. Things started off the right way ... the body poured a charcoal black which topped off with a dense half inch of latte colored head.

Nose is cocoa and coffee. I'm trying my best to get more but that's really all I smell. In spite of that, it does smell pretty damn good. The best way to describe the taste would be not choclate covered coffee beans but coffee beans covered in bitter unsweetened baking chocolate. There's also a touch of caramel and a caress citrus hops. This is extremely tasty.

Mouth is medium with the carbonation not so in your face. I could see buying this to stave off a porter craving. A really well done beer by a brewery that is incredibly underrated.

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Photo of Derek
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Steam Train "Robust Style Porter". This has a well-rounded malt profile... not simply pale ale with a little black-patent for colour.

I'd be inclined to label this as an English Porter (more specifically a pre-industrial, robust porter).

A: Black with a big tan head, a little retention, hints of lace.

S: Chocolate, brown sugar, floral (slightly soapy) hops. A little leathery acidity... makes me wonder if this is a "three threads" sort of thing, where they've blended in a Brett-infused portion & then pasteurized?

T: Dark chocolate with a pleasant bittersweet balance. Brown sugar/molases, nut, biscuit and a little fruity ester flavour. Slightly sharp acidity ('stale' flavour), yet overall it's fairly smooth. Some roasted bitterness in the aftertaste (teasing the line between a porter and a stout). This bomber seems to get better as it warms... pushing a 4.5!

M: Good body (fairly full); slightly dry, despite the fullness; a little chalky & acidic; moderate carbonation.

D: Fairly good.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.65/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at The Fisherman's Restaurant & Bar Seattle, Wa. Pours with one-finger light tan head that goes quickly leaving a little lace. Black color. Roasted coffee nose. Light carbonation and medium bodied. Starts with a roasted /burnt coffee flavor, same finish. $4.50 for a 16oz glass.

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Photo of ReebShorts
4.75/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pitch black, 2 finger brown head, tight bubbles, looks inviting.

Aroma of un-sweetened chocoloate, mild coffee, and dark cherry.

Ahh, this is delighgtful indeed. Not overly-complex. Very Smooth, creamy mouthfeel. Falavor balanced nicely, not too sweet, slightly bitter even, and a nice mild hop finish to balance everything. Exceptional Porter.

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Photo of murrayswine
3.72/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Shared to me by Battlekow.
Pours like aguiness, only thinner, so I'll call it burnt brown/black.
The head is decent, and basic.
the smell is awesome, rich with sweeter malts and a little coffee bitterness, slight toffee. Finishes as raisins.
The taste is a little limp and the mouthfeel is non existant, so I will let it warm up.
Okay it's warmer, and the taste is a little more forward. It nutty as hell. Limp, and a little underwhelming.

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Photo of czechsaaz
3.44/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

smell is roasty at first but there's a vinuous character that's kind of off putting. Very low but perceptable aroma hops.

Deep brown with a nice thick lasting tan head.

It seem very high IBU and comes off at first as quite bitter. It does show some sweet malt flavors too and some pit fruit. All the roast character comes across in the aftertaste. There's a lingering coffee and smokey aftertaste.

Nice full body and pretty creamy from the subtle carbonation.

Solid beer. I'd like a little more roast flavor to come through but I'd recommend it to porter fans.

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Photo of DogFood11
4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another northwest brew I picked up over super bowl weekend. Big rocky brown head that has blanket lacing on top of a pitch black thick body. Mild carbonation.

Deep rich dark chocolate, toasted malt, Hop presence although mild is cutting. Some bitterness. Pretty dry mouthfeel but not annoying at all.

at a solid 5.3% this is not only a very interesting and tasty brew but it remains in the borderline session area. Easy drinking. Good price. A beer I will by in bulk when available in my area.

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Photo of Tupperwolf
3.4/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours out a nice, thick dark brown with a gennerous bit of fluffy tan head that lingers longer than is really necessary, and leaves some small curls of frothy lacing.

Nice roasty scents blossom as this warms up - coffee, slight nutty breadiness, alcohol, and a slight green vegetable.

Similarly roasted coffee flavors, rounded out by alcohol, caramel and a very slight bit of smoke.

Smooth, full and classic porter mouthfeel - slightly spicy from alcohol and hops, but mouthfilling without being too heavy.

Pretty tasty porter, actually. I've heard this brewery recommended a couple of times and have a few of their beers to review.

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Photo of fretlessman71
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pertinent Preliminary Comments: Many thanks to BrewDog for providing this one. Have heard rumblings in the past about this brewery, and all of them good.

APPEARANCE: Jet black – may be the blackest porter I’ve seen yet. Just a tiny bit of root beer brown at the edges. Tan head fades rather quickly; almost no lace.

AROMA: Dark fruit at first, then chocolate and coffee surge to the forefront. Very light hops in the nose.

FLAVOR: Yep – it’s robust, all right. Nice roasty character jumps right out at you, heavier on the black malt than the chocolate, but not much. Chewy chocolate, espresso, and charcoal come through. A bit acidic in the finish, but clean nonetheless. Well balanced.

MOUTHFEEL: Light to medium bodied, medium carbonation.

DRINKABILITY: Sure went down fast! And at 5.3%ABV, one could have a few in a sitting and still be able to stand up afterwards.

OVERALL COMMENTS: A good solid porter, designed for easy drinking, with just enough going on to keep things interesting for the palate.

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Photo of beerceller99
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bottle pours a black color with a fleeting brown head. Strong smell of roasted nuts and malts. Rich, hearty taste is of dark roasted malts with an ever so subtle sweet bread flavor. Silky smooth mouthfeel. Finishes with a roasted grain taste in the throat.

My ex's attorney is a co-founder of this brewery, but I won't hold it against him... An excellent brew. ; )

ps... what up big A ? ? ! !

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Photo of beertaster13
4.68/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Top notch all the way. Pours a crude oil black, hints of ruby shine through, the tan head is inviting and beautiful to look at. The smell is strong of coffee, detected mollases and caramel. Chocolate roasted malts are incredibly detected. The taste comes together for a perfect balance, the taste is strong of coffee and chocolate flavor but the slight hop counterbalances to make a perfect blend. Full bodied for most porters but damn good, will invite you for many more, dangerously great.

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Photo of RoyalT
3.38/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance – This beer is black as night with a huge, volcanic head that literally covered the inside of my glass. Awesome!

Smell – Deep, rich coffee aroma with mild chocolate scents. The heavily toasted malt smell came out as well in this nose.

Taste – This one was too light and off-style for my tastes. The toasty flavors were there, but everything was a little too light. The coffee came out in the taste, but it felt cheap. The chocolate made a brief appearance, but most of the other flavors hinted in the bouquet were absent. There was absolutely no sweetness to this as well, which was disappointing.

Mouthfeel – There was a little carbonation which rubbed me the wrong way. This should be flat, smooth, and chewy, yet I got a fizz, light body, and watery.

Drinkability – It was a disheartening taste to say the least. I enjoy this line of brews (Snoqualmie is just a hop, skip, and a jump from where I live), but malt-oriented ales seem to be beyond the reach of this brewery.

Comments – This rating is all over the board I know, but it reflects my experience with the tasting.

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Photo of Boto
3.58/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a fairly dark brown. Aroma is a bit thin for this style. Some roastiness and chocolate to the nose. Similar tastes, although a little thin in the body for the style. Still, it went with the crabcakes a whole lot better than a fizzy yellow one would! A pretty decent brew.

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Photo of marc77
4.4/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A shade shy of pitch black, with trace clear crimson when held to light. Billowy, well retained dark beige head leaves loose, muddled lace. The aroma is dominated by a balanced combination of sharp, burnt, slightly smokey black patent and rounded, mellow chocolate malt. Hint of dark lovibond caramel malt and diacetyl add a pseudo-roasty sweet and lightly buttery depth. Clean, yet enticing aromawise. Molasses laced sweetness upfront in flavor is quickly supplemented by chocolate and subtle buttery malt. Mild prune like fruity undertone runs parallel with a agreeable carbonaceous black patent presence. Pleasant breadiness surfaces late along with raisiny, uncontested malt sweetness due to the judicious hop bitterness. Medium bodied, and lightly dextrinous in mouthfeel, aiding in quaffability. Finishes sweet, with a lingering impression of dark chocolate syrup on well toasted bread. Steam Train is a highly enjoyable, relatively balanced, chocolate driven porter that retains an elegant lightness on the palate. Perhaps a touch shy in hop bitterness. Outstanding drinkability.

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Photo of Gusler
3.96/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

The pour a jet-black color with the head planetary in size, creamy in consistency, as it desiccates the lace left behind a thick sticky sheet to seal off the glass. Toasted grains, coffee, somewhat sweet and not a bad nose for a porter, the start mostly malt, the top rather thin. Finish has a mild acidity, the hops perky in their spiciness, very dry and long lasting aftertaste, overall a fair to middling porter.

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Photo of Bighuge
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is a dark chestnut color. Almost black. A thin shit-brown colored head dissipates into a thick collaring rather quickly. Black malt, coffee bean, mocha and dark fruit tones come into the equation on the nose. The low carbonation and silky smooth mouthfeel lead to high drinkability. (The nice taste doesn't hurt either.) The taste is a little less complex than the nose. That doesn't occur often, but it does for me here. The taste is composed of bittersweet chocolate and mocha java. There is a very quaint sour apple presence that would be out of place if it were any more pronounced. A high quality porter. My first experience with Snoqualmie is a positive one.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The body is an opaque black in color with no easily found highlights, but if you search you may find some clear crimson glints along the rim of the glass. But despite its intense color, the creamy deep tan head receeds to just a collar and a thin surface covering, although it does leave some interesting lace. The aroma is tantalizing with swirling notes of rich dark chocolate, fruitiness, and a dull roastiness that's not unlike spent espresso grounds. Its light body doesn't hold back any flavor, being rich with bittersweet chocolate, a berry-like fruitiness, burnt malt roastiness, and powdered cocoa that's backed by a firm bitterness. It finishes dry with a sweet cocoa-ish note, and some very light grassy & piney hop flavor and resonating roastiness in the aftertaste. This smooth, drinkable beer has alot of character to offer, but it needs to be served at cellar temperature to open up its full range of flavors.

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Photo of cokes
4.57/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Black bodied brew, with ruby-orange edges. Creamed tan head fades slowly to a lacing.
Strong roasted aromas. Expresso, dark chocolate, ash, and charcoal. Carmel appears as it warms. Piney hops are far off in the distance and only occasionally recognized.
Starts immensely roasted, burnt and bitter (charred bitter, not hoppy bitter). Charred earth, strong expresso, char-grilled, ashy smokiness. Nice, but a bit oppressive. As it warms, sweetness begins to materialize. Carmel, vanilla and dried berry hues enter the fray. It all stays encapsulated in the roastedness. The piney hops are a pinprick at the finale.
This just gets better with each sip.
Just shy of medium bodied. Very little carbonation makes this slide down the throat.
A top notch porter. Thanks, jreitman

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Photo of jreitman
4.42/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer is a mahogany color and only slightly transparent. Burnt mocha flavors throughout with some caramel in the finish. After trying the beer, we were quite intrigued and kept trying to identify the different flavors. There is a lot going on here, but it all boils down to the various variations on the dominant roasted/burnt flavor. Percieved bitterness was surprisingly (and pleasantly) low.

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Photo of Jason
4.92/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Presentation: 22 oz brown bomber, “unfiltered and unpasteurized, please refrigerate” on the label. No freshness date.

Appearance: Black as night, creamy tiny-bubbled lace holds strong with thin rings that stick at every sip. Visually appealing for a dark beer lover.

Smell: Appetizing chocolaty aroma similar to unsweetened bakers chocolate. You get a mild charred and coffee hint here and there but it mainly stays with chocolate. Mild underlying yeast and sweetness but does not make much of a presence.

Taste: Bordering on silky smooth, creamy mouth feel that supports a sturdy medium body. Rich roasted palate, charred grain flavours throughout. Coco and carob are suggested to the taste buds, mild coffee also but the malt holds off on any great amount of sweetness and slowly drops a bit of it here and there. Hops are in good for helping to balance and the flavour is mostly of faint leafy and earthened tones. Esters are held to a calm minimum and present a faint fruity flavour of black currant. Finishes with a light sweetness.

Notes: A robust porter that is well balanced and does not go over the top yet still brings a lot to the table. Seriously, this porter rocks … all of its attributes roll and work together to form a nearly perfect brew. Cheers to Snoqualmie Falls Brewing Company for putting out such a stellar porter.

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Steam Train Porter from Snoqualmie Falls Brewing Company & Taproom
4.09 out of 5 based on 130 ratings.
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