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Heavy Seas - Smoke On The Water | Heavy Seas Beer

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Heavy Seas - Smoke On The WaterHeavy Seas - Smoke On The Water
143 Ratings
Heavy Seas - Smoke On The WaterHeavy Seas - Smoke On The Water

Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer
Maryland, United States

Style: Smoked Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by on 06-20-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 143 |  Reviews: 87
Photo of gestyr
3.84/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into a goblet.

A: Pours an opaque black with a minimal head that goes away fast

S: Rich. Chocolate, coffee, malt... and smoke. Nice blend of aromas

T: Malt, coffee, chocolate... all good porter flavors... then the smoke hits you. Very nice balance.

M: Medium bodied with a good level of carbonation for the style

O: A very likeable beer. I could see myself sipping this on a cold winter evening while sitting in front of the fire.

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Photo of Gosox8787
3.97/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Bomber bottle that I purchased about a year ago. Based on the smokey character of the beer and circumstance, I let this one sit for a while. I'm curious to see how this has held up.

Appearance: Ample carbonation and head on the initial pour. Almost black in color with a light brown head.

Aroma: Bittersweet chocolate, smoke, and some freshly ground coffee. Nicely balanced.

Taste: Big chocolate and smoke notes. Actually some nice sweetness throughout. Coffee beans are there as well. Not bad at all. Really nice balance.

Mouthfeel: Thinner mouthfeel, but there is some nice, smooth carbonation.

Overall, a nice smoked porter that is a really solid portrayal of the style. I think the age of the beer actually was added to this rather than subtracted. Nothing outstanding but very solid.

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Photo of russwbeck
3.98/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this at the Fall NoVA Brewfest.

Black pour with a nice brown head. Retention isn't great. Smoky smell, light chocolate and roasted malts. The taste is really smokey. Like the smell, there are hints of chocolate. Balanced taste, but a bit light and thin. Medium bodied. Carbonated well. Dry aftertaste and no hint of alcohol. Very tasty, very drinkable. Not a big taste, but it's put together very well.

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Photo of Chaney
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I must have passed this one in the store about 100 times last season and never took the plunge... until now!

Poured into a pint glass, because... I'm a badass.

A: Pitch black.... like any smoked dark brew should be! The head was fairly dark and pepper, thick, and certainly glass coating.

S: It's not too potent, but what is there certainly lives up to its name. Smoked BBQ ribs with wood chips mixed in. Maybe a bit of cocoa, but the burnt charcoal is the main star here.

T: I dig it. Fairly one dimensional, but in terms of the smoke flavor, there is nothing fake about this. Authentic bitter burnt cinder block and then some. I didn't get much fruit, chocolate, or anything like that.

M: Fairly thick and gooey, with low carbonation that suited this beer just fine. The lacing was splotchy.

O: If you don't like smokey beers, please look elsewhere. As for me, I grill fish on cedar planks several times a month, maybe more, and I plan on getting a couple of bottles of this for those outings.

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Photo of BeerLover99
3.79/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: deep black body, trace head, no lacing

S: big cocoa nibs, roasted malt, liquid smoke

T: sweet dark chocolate, roasted nuts, smoky alcohol finish

M: med body, creamy/smooth mouth

O: My 1st Heavy Seas offering. Not bad,
it has potential. Needs a little more body, but
nice aroma and flavors.

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Photo of ElizabethCraig
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Split a bomber of this with my husband on 10/5/2011.

I'm going to review this as a Porter. Because.. well, you'll see.

A very dark opaque brown with slight tan head, with a chocolate toasty malt scent. I was surprised that it had a coffee slightly sweet scent, I got no smoke off the scent whatsoever.

I was equal parts happy and disappointed by the taste as far as how this beer is described.

*I* got coffee and chocolate notes, to a very very slight smoke flavor, to a dark rich chocolate. Very slight smoked chocolate on the palate as the flavor faded. Actually fairly sweet, and the rich body didn't hurt either ;)

I love this beer as a porter - and I think it's an excellent example of what a 8% Porter can and should be.

I did not like this beer as a smoked beer. I'm sorry, I just didn't get much smoke from it at all. But I made appreciative "I really DO LOVE PORTER!" noises as I drank the rest of my share =)

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.7/5  rDev +27.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Rich aroma is smoky with strong tones of sweet chocolate, molasses and quality coffee and hints of licorice and caramel. It pours a warm deep brown with a fairly thick fine-bubbled tan head. Delightful, smoky flavor has tones of caramel, chocolate, toffee and molasses with a bit of coffee. Texture is silky smooth and on the thick side, and leaves a nice tingle.

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Photo of zaphodchak
3.97/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

High-ish pour yields a half-finger of tan head that dissipates into some surface memory. Body is opaque blackish-brown with some brown highlights.

Nose is quite nice for the style. Smoke and roasty cocoa, as well as campfire wood and a hint of raisin.

Taste is nice and potent, and quite representative of what I think a smoked porter should be. Good balance of malt, hops, and smoke, though it's really rather tilted in favor of malt. Pretty rich.

Mouthfeel is quite fine, and doesn't really steal from flavor.

Overall this is a good, malty porter with some smoke. I've tried several smoked porters; this one stacks up.

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Photo of eat
3.97/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thin-looking on the pour. Opaque black body with a cover of large cream-white bubbles.

On the nose: minerals, dusty dark chocolate, subtle smoke, astringent grain. Caramel malt comes out more as it warms.

The smoke here is well-played; subtle and well-balanced. Dusty cocoa, light grain, caramel, coffee, minerals, soily hops and a little alcohol bite. Mildly drying finish. The flavour is light in the way a porter should be.

Nice silky medium body with a light carbonation. Fitting feel.

This is a very drinkable, delicious and balanced smoked porter. This would be a great place to start if you're just getting into smoky beers, the smoke here is just right.

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Photo of CooperEllis
3.56/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz into 6 ounce goblet. From therealnomayo, cheers!

I enjoy smoked beers that utilize the smoke as an element in the overall profile. I don't particularly enjoy where the smoke dominates the nose and palate.

To this end, this is a good beer that has a mild smoke note in the aromas and the taste. The nose has a very slight malt while there is a bit of smoke. A faint peat in the smoke.

More malt in the body and a lighter smoke, even than was in the nose. I do prefer my Porter with full roast malt, heavy underlying bittness that is cued off of chocolate and plum note. Here there is more of a raisin.

The mouthfeel is solid. I would, again, prefer this to be more full, but the lightness in the body matches the light smoke in the aroma and taste.


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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.9/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber of the 2010 vintage pours a near black color with some ruby highlights. Fluffy tan head displays average retention and lacing.

Nose is interesting, lighter on the smoke than I would like though. Rummy dark fruit mixed with some sweet chocolate. Low roast and a fair amount of bready yeast.

Low on smoke again in the flavor department, unfortunately. However, the beer overall is actually pretty tasty. Bready, fruit-laden yeastiness with malts that are soft and chocolaty. ABV is well hidden and has a soft, lightly creamy mouthfeel - carbed just about right. Kiss of smoke and light vanilla as it warms and has just the right amount of sweetness. I like it, would bump up some more though if it were more smoky.

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Photo of biegaman
4.1/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

'Smoke on the Water' is written by Deep Purple, and the beer by Heavy Seas Brewing is more like 'deep brown', if not black. The streaks of colour along its top and bottom edges give away that it's not entirely opaque and spoil the perception of this as one of those big, intimidating beers. It also doesn't help that the lacing it leaves is 'pretty'.

The smoke is definitely in there, but it plays nice with the other (even more prominent) note of bittersweet chocolate. What can be accomplished when the two work together - wow, this smells exquisite! And the whole bouquet is complimented by a rather genteel, very coffee-ish roast that is weaved in with swirling (and later more so with warming).

Full disclosure: I didn't expect the beer to have anywhere near this much flavour, so you'll excuse me if I get a little excited in listing everything I'm tasting. It's like a quality cappuccino, sweetened with cane sugar and real vanilla, with dark chocolate shavings on top and, almost as an afterthought, a slightly bacon-y smoke to boot. Molto bene!

I noticed a faint something in the aroma that I couldn't tell was either fruity or spicy. Now, in the mouthfeel, I note it again and I'm ready to accuse the 8% alcohol as the culprit. The taste of bruised dark fruit and the brief, zinging sensation of alcohol are each too delicate and short-lived so as to even be considered moderate, but they can be sensed.

The base porter actually resembles a foreign/export stout: it has a cane sugar-like sweetness and, on some sips, seems to have a distant lactose kind of twang about it. The brewer went light on the heavier malts and extracted all the delicious barley juice he could from a less meaty grist. A definite raw earthiness is gained from ample bittering hops.

Smoke on the Water is a great offering for anyone wanting to have a taste of smoked beer without traveling too far down that rabbit hole. I hesitate to consider it a 'training wheel' smoke beer, however, because the smoke is far from it's main or most marked feature, it's simply one of many (and probably the least appreciable at that). Still, this recipe has really brought out the best in both smoked-things and porters. Recommended.

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Photo of Teleweizen2
3.36/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - pours a deep black color. A fingers worth of tan foam sits on top. Doesn't last long though.

S - mild aroma. A subtle smokeyness, could use a little more for a smoked beer but it does add some depth to the beer. Some smooth bitter chocolate. And a touch of licoric.

T - a smooth chocolate sweetness in the front. A little smokey/ashey note in the middle. And a nice earthy hop bitterness on the back and a chocolatey finish.

M - smooth, creamy, almost milky. Very low carbonation.

D - a nice porter. Easy drinking. Would've been better on a colder night, and could use a little more smoke but still a decent beer.

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Photo of KajII
4.1/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

[Best served in a Dimpled mug]

Bottle. Poured black with a brown/red hue with a small light brown creamy head that was fully diminishing and had poor lacing.

The aroma was of burnt dark chocolate malts and a doughy yeast with notes of licorice, coffee, and a smokey alcohol scent.

It tasted lightly sweet with hints of dark chocolate and licorice at the start then progressed into a smooth-bitter-smokey-coffee flavor that exploded on the tastebuds and stayed with you for a wonderfully long time.

Mouthfeel was full in body and creamy in texture with a nice soft carbonation.

Overall an extremely tasty brew. If only all smoked beers tasted like this.

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Photo of THECPJ
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes:

appearance: black in color with a 1 finger tan head

smell: smokey, roast, sweet malts, chocolate

taste: caramel, sweet, brown sugar, vanilla, lil smoke

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, smooth, medium body

drinkability: this was an easy drinker. love what heavy seas does in there mutiny fleet beers.



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Photo of vgarneth
3.33/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love smoke beers. Personally, I think I've found one of my favorite styles. The Rauchbier is where it's at in my opinion. Heavy Seas did a decent job for this smoked porter. The store manager at the Brier Creek Total Wine & More in North Carolina recommened this to me. Good choice.

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Photo of Duhast500
4.35/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 1pt. 6oz bottle into a dimpled mug.

The color is a complete black with no highlights and a finger of foamy brownish/tan head ans some slight lacing left on the glass.

The smell is a bit woody with a bit of a bready flavor. There is a definite smoked malt flavor that is unyielding and seems to be the main anchor in the aroma. There is a sweetness coming out in between the smoke flavor that is spicy things up in the background.

The taste is sweet and through back a bit. The smoke flavor comes right out and pronounces itself and reminds me of cigar smoke a bit. There is a bit of a tobacco flavor with the sweet malt flavor. There is a bit of a salty flavor as well that leaves a bit of the same kind of flavor on my tongue.

The feel of this beer is big but not too large. It puts ideas of food pairing that would go well with this beer. A good, flavorful beer that has a easy drinking feel and goes down smooth.

This would go well with a good cheese burger. A burger with some swiss cheese and some onions paired with this would match well with the smoky flavor. Don't forget the bacon as well. This would also be great with steak, even better with a steak that was marinated with bourbon.

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Photo of TexIndy
3.92/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a pint glass. No dating info. It was a dark black color with a little bit of carb bubbling on the surface. It had an average sized head that quickly settled into a very thin collar. Minimal lacing with none sticking.

The smell was very good with dark roasted malt, smoke, chocolate malt and some alcohol. Was good but wish it had more smoke aroma. It was there but weak - actually more of the alcohol showed thru than the smoke. The taste followed the aroma with nice dark and chocolate malts leading the way with a bit of smoke. Alcohol was less prevalent here. Again, good but needed more smoke. Mouthfeel was creamy but could have used more carbonation. Good aftertaste.

Overall, a good beer but could have been much better with some more smoke to it. Easy to drink as is but doesn't leave a big impression. Do recommend. Not avail here in TX so shipped back from Indy. Rotation - not shipping worthy. If avail near me, it would make the occasional rotation as I do love smoke but would be bigger player if they upped the smoke content. [O;Y]

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Photo of Clydesdale
3.82/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours an opaque, very dark brown. The latte-colored head is fairly tall at first, with a dense, frothy texture. Retention is mediocre, but a few solid splotches of lacing stick to the glass.

S: Chocolate and black malt in the nose. Some light smokiness, but nothing outrageous. Some light caramel/brown sugar sweetness, along with a very faint hop note.

T: Dark, slightly roasty malts up front. Definitely a bit sweet - caramel/brown sugar are fairly prominent. Semisweet chocolate is also featured. Light vanilla. Light smoke as well, but more of a complementary flavor than anything else. Some faint, lightly tart fruitiness.

M: Fairly hefty body. Carbonation lends some smoothness and creaminess. Slightly sticky, but not in a bad way. Roastiness contributes some mild dryness into the finish.

D: It's definitely not very smoky, but this is a big, solid, enjoyable porter. If you're looking for something with lots of smoked character, you may disappointed, but it does add a nice bit of depth here. A nice beer despite some style/marketing inconsistencies.

 1,070 characters

Photo of beveritt
3.6/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Poured from a 22 oz brown bomber into a shaker pint glass. Label is shiny black and depicts a pirate themed skull.

Appearance: Pours with just over 1 finger if medium tan head. This settles to a ring around the glass,leaving behind some lacing. The beer itself is extremely dark brown, enough that it is opaque throughout. Looks like a small amount of sediment remains in the bottle.

Smell: Strong sweet dark malt upfront with notes of chocolate, dark fruit, and molasses. Hints of roasted barley bitterness.

Taste: Strong milk chocolate flavor upfront with a mellow barley roastiness following. Hints of toffee and toasted marshmallow. Not much, if any, smoke here.

Mouthfeel: Slightly lower than average carbonation level. Body is incredibly thick and viscous.

Drinkability: A good, if a little sweet porter, but not much in the way of smoke in this one. Drinks like an Imperial (higher ABV) porter.

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Photo of kwjd
3.7/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown colour with thick tan head. Some small lacing down the glass. Smells of chocolate and roasted malt, but the smoke is quite faint. Flavour is fairly sweet, no smoke really shows up in the aftertaste either. Smooth mouthfeel. I enjoyed this beer, just not enough smoke for a smoked beer.

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Photo of donniecuffs
3.68/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Relatively recently at Rattle 'N Hum, NYC. Poured brownish, with two fingers of beige head, great head retention and lacing, and little visible carbonation. Smelled more of dry coffee beans and bittersweet chocolate, and only modestly of smoke. The taste began on a lightly smokey note, followed by a pleasant coffee midpalate and a chocolate/mocha finish. Medium-thickness; non-carbonated and smooth. Very tasty and nicely-balanced beer, but I would like a little more smokiness.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.11/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into my Darkness glass...Light black with some decent tan head, ok retention, better lacing...Weird aroma that is super sweet on the front with a small smokey finish. Very sweet chocolate syrup with vanilla, just not the right combination...Boring and off taste as well, sweet chocolate syrup with a hint of ashy smoke.

This is just off the mark in every way, don't bother.

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Photo of biglite351
3.71/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - a good amount of red around the edges. Tall creamy tan head leaving no lacing.

S - mild. Malts and an under tone of chocolate. Not really getting any smoke.

T - mild smoke. Roasted malts and chocolate. Coffee through the middle.

M - medium coating. Mild tingle on sides of tongue. Tingle on to I'd tongue during after taste.

D - decent flavor and mild feel make it easily drinkable.

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Photo of gueuzeonhigh
3.56/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It pours like everything I expected a porter should look like.
Nice enduring head but not the longest lasting head but it hung around as a tan-brown covering of the beer.

Scant nose radiating some hits of toasted malt and alcohol.

This is unmistakably a porter. Hops, I pick-up a bit of citrus-- maybe lemon flavor, coffee and peat. It's sort of a hodge podge of flavors that are not distinct to any one brew style-- so I conclude it must be a porter.

The big question is that Heavy Seas makes a bit of a deal out of smoke.. so before I opened the bottle I had certain expectations in mind none of which came true. Try as I might I can't find the "smokey" hints...

This is generally a very congenial porter but maybe it's a bit light in places.

The mouthfeel is cordial- nice 'n' smooth on the palate with a clean long lasting finish. It's not particularly strong flavor or distinct with a memorable quality but it's still comfortable none the less- my pint+ bottle went down the gullet without a hitch.

Drinkability- the ABV isn't so over powering but I've just finished my pint+. It's a very smooth flavor and very easy on my digestive tract..

But the thing that sticks in my beer taster's craw is "where is the smoke?"

Good porter but nothing that will make me remember it.

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Heavy Seas - Smoke On The Water from Heavy Seas Beer
Beer rating: 3.69 out of 5 with 143 ratings
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