Heavy Seas - Hop Harvest Ale | Heavy Seas Beer

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Heavy Seas - Hop Harvest AleHeavy Seas - Hop Harvest Ale

Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer
Maryland, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by smokeypeat on 09-10-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 26 | Ratings: 48
Photo of nickthetick
4.87/5  rDev +28.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: pours a very dark brown with some brick-red highlights when held up to the light in a DFH signature glass with a finger of khaki head that hangs around for the experience.

S: It smells of coffee, pine, dirt(in a good way), bitter dark chocolate, and bitter dark fruits.

T: the first flavor to get to the tongue is a intriguing fruity/ coffee flavor that is chased from the mouth by a chocolate bitter taste with some grape tones to it. There is a dark roasted grain and toasted bread backbone. There is a pine flavor left on the tongue.

MF: heavy body, great effervescence, a tad chewy and a slight astringency.

O: wow, what a great beer, if I where to take the best porter and the best black ale and mix them they wouldn't get to this. So many different flavors combine and layer so well it gives the impression of a fine port.

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Photo of JayS2629
4.21/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This must be a new beer. First time I have ever been the 5th person to review a beer! Poured from a 22 oz bomber.

It is a super dark black porter with a huge, creamy tan head that stuck around a long time, slowly fading into spiderweb rings on the side of the glass. Leaves creamy walls of lace. Beautiful porter.

Initially I get a good whiff of the wet hops that bring a piney, grassy blend over the top of a cocoa and coffee background. Hints of toffee in the background.

Very interesting. It starts with a nice bitter touch of piney hops matched against a rich dark chocolate background. The hops fades into floral tones and roassted coffee notes peek through. The finish lingers to a touch of toffee. Interesting balance of hops against dark qualities. I give it high marks for being so interesting, but it isn't my favorite from Heavy Seas by far.

It fits the porter bill on body. Thinner than a stout but with a slight creamy touch.

Overall, very nice and easy to drink. Probably too easy.

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Photo of oberon
4.15/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gearing up for game 2,come on Tigers!a unique offering for a harvest ale,a hopped up porter.Poured into an imperial nonic a deep roasted chesnut brown with a large fluffy light tan colored head head that left multiple broken rings of lace as it settled slowly.A shot of fresh citric hops and pine resin jumped out during the pour wich was nice,dark roast coffee,and a little raw nuttiness comes into play as well.Dryer and roasted on the palate up front than a healthy dose of northwest hops that meld into light molasses sweetness and more earthiness in the finish.Wow this was pretty damn good,I like it alot and I like the change of pace for a harvest ale.
Tigers win game 2...and the Lions destroy the Bears,it will be a good day.

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Photo of chinchill
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bomber served in a large Austrian mug.

A - VERY dark mahogany, but clear and allowing a bit of light to come through. Pours with a towering, foamy and creamy tan head that reduces quickly but leaves a 2 finger irregular head and lots of foam on the glass.

S - Immediate fresh hop smell; herbal, a bit earthy and citrusy. Some roast malt barely present in the background.

T - This brew is way more hoppy than usual for the style, but not so much as to completely mask the malts. Despite the ample hop flavor and aroma, this is only mildly bitter. It has a lasting, mild hop finish and aftertaste.

M - Medium body; excellent carbonation level; semi-dry finish; virtually no bite.

O - Reading up on "porters" recently (Tasting Beer by Mosher), I now know that "porter" is a highly variable style. Still, this one is on the fringe. If you don't expect a typical porter, and like the smell and flavor of fresh hops, this beer should appeal to you. This one is a nice cross between a fresh hop black APA and an American Porter. Very drinkable!

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Photo of sixerofelixir
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber.

Pours a darkish brown. Light will shine through at the edges. Light tan head sticks around for a while and laces the glass. Smell is slightly earthy and slightly grassy, sweet all the while. Taste is a good dose of caramel at first, followed by the floral, fresh hops, and twists into a slightly bitter roasted malt - cocoa and light coffee. Finishes with some herbal hop bitterness too. Nice and complex taste. Feel is porter-thin, but balanced well with some caramel overtones, making it complex for the feel too. I thought this was a fine beer, one I want to purchase again. The taste goes waaay beyond what a 5% brew normally produces.

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Photo of obrendano
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I believe this got released this very week, because the kickoff party for it is going on tonight in Baltimore

A - very deep brown, and clear, a little lighter than many porters I've seen. khaki head dissipates quickly. GREAT bottle design, as always

S - key word printed on the bottle is FRESH. these are fresh grown hops, and this is the very first batch of the first run of this beer. the hop smell is out of this world. floral, clean, citrusy, and powerful hops dominate the nose, with a bit of toast behind it from the dark malt.

T - slightly tame toasted porter malt up front with a heavy brush of spicy hops overtaking briefly. again, having probably been grown and bottled very recently, the hops are powerful and delicious. they do not have a dominating sharp bite thankfully, but make their presence known. at times they tend to dominate and throw off the balance, but the rest of the beer is rather tame, so the bitter balance is welcome

M - slightly lower bodied than I expected, but nothing awful. I do believe some extra malt could really beef this up, make it darker and give it a heavier taste, but this is nothing to hate on itself.

O - I liked this. not sure if I would go about aging it to see how it fared in a year, so if I ever get this again it's getting downed that same night. support your local brewery!

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Photo of afipsycho13
4.06/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

L: Dark nut brown, good clarity, thick two finger tan head, slow to recede leaving thick lace clumpings on the glass sides.

A: Earthy, herbal hops lead, some slight citrus detectable, definitely some nutty/ roasted notes.

T: Hops blast on the tongue, some roasted malts, dark fruits, and earthy hops with slight citrus flavors.

M: High carbonation, bitter, medium bodied, slight silkyness

O: awesome twist on the style, flavorful, complex, and delicious. definitely a beer worth trying once (or having a few times)

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Photo of TheHoppiest
4.05/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This brew is from the Heavy Seas Mutiny Fleet series, which is Clipper City's one-off series of brews. This one is a fresh-hop porter, brewed with Maryland "wet" hops.

Poured from a 22 oz bomber into a pint glass. A three-finger off-white head stands tall atop a sea of dark brown liquid with hints of amber and ruby. The head reduces after a few turns 'o the clock to leave a thin skim of off-white.

While called a porter, this has more of a black IPA aroma; hoppy, bitter, and roasted, with hints of coffee and dark chocolate.

Taste is not so hopped as the smell. Smooth and malted to start, with grassy notes mid-sip before finishing mildly bitter. Black coffee, molasses, hints of dark chocolate, and mild caramel are all present in this tasty brew.

Medium bodied, this is a smooth and easy drinking porter with a very slight dry and chalky finish.

Pleasant and enjoyable, this is a great beer to have on a cool fall evening as you eye the Harvest moon. Smooth, roasted and mildly hoppy, this doesn't have the complexity or depth of an Edmund Fitzgerald, or the clean, classic flavor of a Taddy Porter, but it is a savory ale nonetheless. Enjoy!

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours a clear-ish dark brown color with tints of ruby red, along with about an inch light tan head. The head retention is good, and there's a lot of lacing left on the glass. Aroma is grassy and pine hops, roasted malt, and a little bit of chocolate. Taste is similar to the aroma, but there's also the addition of some coffee. In a way, the taste kinda seems like what I would imagine a hoppy Guinness might taste like. At this point since it's still relatively fresh, the hoppy flavors are stronger than the malty ones so the brew reminds me more of a black IPA (instead of a porter) but with the hops not being quite as overpowering as they would be in a typical IPA. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit slick and creamy, and has good carbonation. Overall, I think it's a good brew. At just 5% ABV, it's very easy to drink. Not bad for $5.99 a bottle, it's definitely worth a try. I might buy another bottle just to see how it changes after another 2-3 months when the hops get a bit weaker.

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Photo of BeerNoobNC
4.01/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had the beer on-tap at Brewery Night at Flying Saucer in Raleigh.

This beer was a pleasant surprise. The schedule beer for this event was the Heavy Seas Prosit, which is not under my favorite style. Instead, I got to try this hoppy porter.

The beer was poured into a Heavy Seas pint glass. It had a small head that disappeared by the time I got the beer. It was dark in color, about exactly the color you would expect from a porter.

The taste was incredible. They say the hops are fresh from the local area (in Maryland), and you can definitely taste it. It also has a good chocolate/coffee taste that you expect from porters and the balance between the bitter and sweet is great. My friend, who despises IPAs, was even able to enjoy this beer's hoppiness.

Overall, this beer was excellent. I am not sure what the availability will be for this beer, throughout the winter season and the year, but I hope I can have another one (or more), because this is one of the best (if not #1) porters that I have had. I highly recommend trying it if you get the chance.

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Photo of ncfranklin
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber into a pint glass. A wet hop porter? Sign me up.

A: Rich brown. Very slightly translucent. Thick two finger fluffy head that lasts.

S: Very hop forward nose. Citrus and pine hops mixed thickly with toasty malt and chocolate.

T: Porter in the front, hoppy in the back. Sweet sugar, chocolate, followed by a earthy bitterness with a light citrus taste.

M: medium body, slightly dry in the finish (a surprise).

D: A unique take on using fresh hops. Obviously more engaging on that level than a typical porter, but the malts here are still front and center as the style expects. Nicely done.

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Photo of Chaney
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Fresh Hop Harvest Porter huh? Bring it!

Poured into a snifter.

A: Not quite dark as night, but still pretty damn opaque. The head was about 100 shades lighter than the brew.... and it stuck to the glass going down and then some.

S: Holy crap! It's pretty cool to smell whole leaf hops inside a dark, roasty concoction. It smelled like fresh linen with chocolate melted over it.

T: One of the strangest brews I've ever tasted. Medium bodied, with some citrus fruit notes inside of a dark malt sheen. I didn't get much roast on this, but that worked in this setting.

M: Not too thick.... kinda lager-like actually, with a cottony mouthfeel that was interesting to say the least, with some splotchy lacing.

O: Infinitely weird and memorable, but not 100% successful or to my tastes. I think a B+ overall is pretty fair.

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Photo of oline73
3.93/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown with some light coming through at the edges. There is a finger and a half of light tan head that fades to a layer and leaves a bit of lacing.

Smell: Grassy hops up front with some roast in the background. Hint of sweetness.

Taste: There is a strong roast presence up front. This worried me at first, because I think strong roast and hops tend to fight with each other. I was pleasantly surprised when the roast faded as the grassy hop bitterness showed up. The finish is bitter with a hint of roast.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with smooth carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: Super happy with this beer. The hops and roast complimented each other very nicely. Would definitely have again.

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Photo of LiquidCucumber
3.9/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Very, very dark brown. Not really black, but light doesn't come through. Pours with a small head tinged by tan; leaves nice foam on the glass.

S - Fresh hop smell, very earthy and citrusy. Not much roast here.

T - This brew is citrusy, piney and very earthy. There is some roast there, but it comes through as complementary to the hops rather than clashing against them.

M - Rather light and carbonated, but a little heavier than expected.

O - An interesting beer to try, not truly a porter, but not an "American Black Ale" either. Just not hoppy enough. Interesting stuff.

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Photo of jabergess
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Description says its a fresh hop porter, not a black ipa. I'm failing to taste the distinction, but still think its pretty darn good. Perhaps the hops are a little more muted than an ipa, but the hops are there. The grains have a lighter mouthfeel than a porter. The hops might balance it out more than normal. It tastes more light and quenching than it should. Not necessarily a bad thing.

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Photo of Hopfenpeter
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer poured a deep mahogany brown with tan bubbly head building about two fingers high. It dissipates rather fast, but knaves good lacing on the glass.
The smell is not very distinct. Little hop, some sweetness of caramel, but not much else.
Tasting the beer, up front there is the expected malt character, but little roasted flavors. In the middle a grassy hop flavor and some nutty earthy characters emerge. In the end, caramel adds some sweetness into the finish.
Medium to light bodied beer. I like the wet hop in the beer, but wish it would be a little more full bodied.

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Photo of thain709
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I picked a bottle while in Maryland for Baltimore Beer Week 2011. Shared with Deuane.

A - Poured with a deep brown body that showed a lot of ruby highlights at the bottom...there was a two finger, tan head that formed and held up pretty well...nice lacing was left behind

S - The hops pop in the aroma and they come across as fresh and green...there is a light roasted malt aroma hanging in the background...it's throwing out roast and chocolate

T - Some of the same flavors are present on the palate only they are switched...the malts open up first and present their roasty flavors and provide chocolate and coffee flavors as well...the hops are incorporated throughout, but they showcase that leafy, green flavor and it's taking away from the roastiness...they never become bitter, but they do stay fresh which is nice...the only bite is towards the end and I believe the roasted malt plays a bigger part in that than the hops do

M - Medium bodied...soft carbonation...wanted more body...chocolate coming through

O - Did someone say Black IPA? Oh, well maybe not, but this is pretty reminiscent of one...overall, I'd say this was a good idea...it started off nicely but I think the two ends clashed

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Photo of smokeypeat
3.67/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Saw this on the shelf for the first time and picked it up. This is probably my favorite Heavy Seas label yet. I'm a sucker for locally fresh hopped beers and I was intrigued that it was labeled as a porter rather than a IPA which is how I've had every other fresh hopped beer.

Pours a deep chocolate brown into the glass. Head was an aggressive eggshell white but it dissipated fairly quickly. Aromas on this one are intriguing. Getting a lot of nice hop presence up front with some good light citrus notes. At the same time though there is a strong malt biscuity smell with some slight chocolate showing up. Upon tasting the fresh hops really come through up front and linger throughout. Some fresh cut grass, springtime flowers and lemon zest are all present. The characteristic "porter" side of the taste is very muted. I'm not getting any up front roast or chocolate tones. There is definitely some roasted malt balancing the hops but I would call this more of a black IPA than a porter. Mouthfeel is very thin as well for any type of porter, again more of a black IPA feel.

Overall, I enjoyed this beer as something different to have. Really its labeling as a porter style through me more than anything. I could see myself picking it up again while the hops are super fresh.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle into a couple of pint glasses.

Pours a dark clear ruby, with a couple fingers of light mocha colored head. This settles down into roughly a ½ finger of creamy froth, leaving back sticky patchy lacing that dots the sides of the glass. The aroma smells earthy, danky, and citric, with an underlying mix of smoky roast and sweet malt that is coming off like a combo of coca and caramel.

The taste has an earthy and green citric twang to it, made stronger by the sweetness of the malt. A herbal feel also rides throughout, mostly sticking to the acridness of that underlying roast and spreading out across the back of the profile. The finish is dry, with pith that sticks to the tongue with some strength. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a mellow crispness to the carbonation that keeps this feeling pretty easy overall in the mouth.

Not bad. I liked how the earthy and herbal feel from those fresh hops worked with the slightly burnt and acrid tones of the roast. This fell a bit between an American Porter and a less full take on a Black IPA for me but there is no doubt that this was a drinkable beer that packs a good bit into its 5% body.

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Photo of thagr81us
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from tap into a sampler tumbler. Poured a dark brown with a half finger mocha colored head. Maintained phenomenal lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, earth, wheat, and subtle roasted malt. The flavor was of sweet malt, wheat, earth, subtle roasted malt, and subtle dark chocolate. It had a light feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a decent brew. For the style this wasn't a bad brew, but the wheat character I got in this one just seemed completely out of place. I would have loved to have seen that character disappear and be taken over by the subtle notes of dark chocolate that were present. Worth trying if you see it around, but I would leave it at that.

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Photo of EORS
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a 22 oz bottle.

Appearance: Deep reddish brown to black with a billowy inch of tan head that retains well and laces down the glass. Most standout quality of the beer, regretfully.

Smell: Hop, hop, and hop on the nose

Taste: Fresh, resiny hops mellowed out by the malt body of the beer, maybe a small hint of the roasty/smoky character that I'd expect in a porter

Mouthfeel: Medium to light, I want to say oily but maybe that's just my mind playing tricks on me.

Overall: Really enjoyed the fresh hops, and it was great to try something different, but I'm not sold that they really fit in with the style. As I drank the beer I couldn't help thinking that I could have been drinking a wet-hopped ale.

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Photo of Jadjunk
3.49/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

"Our special Hop Haarvest ale is designed to showcase the special flavors derived from our locally grown, Maryland "wet" hops. The 2011 version is a 5% Alc./Vol. porter in style. We hope you enjoy the unique profile that comes from freshly harvested hops!" Brewed in the style of an American Porter with wet hops added. A one-off brew, available in 22 oz. bottles and on limited draft.

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle to a Heavy Seas pint glass. Served above 51º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) A fairly aggressive pour yields a creamy, frothed mocha cream head over a deep brown cola body with pale ruby highlights. Carbonation is plentiful and eccentric. Retention is average, lacing is light and curtained. 4

(Smell) The malt profile consists of some medium toasted caramel grain, a pinch of moderate roasted malt and a touch of semi-sweet chocolate. Wet hops provide an earthy, herbaceous and slightly peppery aroma for a profoundly strong hop profile. The aroma is suggestive of a beer that belongs closer to a Black IPA or even an export stout rather than a porter based on hop aromas. Potency is medium/high. 3.75

(Taste) A light, simple malt profile of some bready caramel malt, a dash of clean roasted malt and some dry chocolate malt, all of which build a fairly thin body with little to no sweetness to behold. The hops are better on display, with a series of peppery and herbal notes and a mild bitterness. The porter body is fairly underwhelming and the hops not as well preserved as in the aroma, both combine for a favorable, but not memorable flavor. 3.25

(Mouthfeel) Texture is slick, thin, mildly resinous. Carbonation creates a mild creaminess and frothiness for a fluffier texture and fuller mouthfeel. Body is mild/medium for the style and shy of medium overall. Balance is slightly bitter over sweet with neither making any significant lead as both are fairly mild, the flavor underwhelming. Alcohol presence is very low. 3.5

(Overall) Despite stretching the boundaries of what we think of in an American Porter, Hop Haarvest manages to stay a fairly simple beer with not enough of a malt profile to base any number of hops on, let alone freshly harvested hops. The hops are also very mild with not much potent flavor nor assertive bitterness. The flavor in general is underwhelming even if the flavors aren't a negative, there's nothing memorable to savor in this beer. 3.5

Heavy Seas Beer's
Hop Haarvest Ale 2011

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.45/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle - $5.99 at Olde Crabapple Bottle Shoppe in Alpharetta, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a dark walnut-hued body with a two-finger high foam layer, light beige in color.

Smell: There's a roastiness present, though not overly effusive in the nose with hoppy notes of newly mown lawn and citrus over top and a faint hint of substandard chocolate in the background.

Taste: Initial lightly toasty, roasty, and unsweetened chocolate malt flavors, though none of them particularly potent. Light sweetness. What follows is a fluttering of minutely citric lemon rind and a small sprinkling of fresh lawn clippings, though not much bitterness, really. Drying, slightly roasted finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Medium carbonation.

Overall: A gentle, laid-back porter is definitely not the typical vessel for fresh-picked hops. With the subtle malt flavors, I was expecting the hops to be a bit more robust, but, no, they're pretty mild-mannered, too. So, it's kind of benign all around.

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Photo of EgadBananas
3.22/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours dark brown, with a light brownish head. Dissipates quick. Aroma is mostly big floral notes, but not a lot else. Hints of malt sweetness. Mildly bitter, slightly roasted and malty. Not much though, and it's not hugely balanced. It's thin too. For a porter, it doesn't have much substance. Bit crisp.

As it warms, the hoppiness fades, and the porter qualities don't take over. Overall, it's mediocre.

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Photo of SuperSpy
3.21/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

20oz bomber poured into a pint glass.

Very, very dark mahogany brown with a really good sized head.

A good dark malty base but the hops are what win out in the aroma. Earthy, with hints of coffee and roasted malt.

A bit watery and astringent but the dark malts are more prominent than in the aroma. Good balance between the hops and malt.

The overall flavor isn't that memorable but this is a good drinking beer.

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Heavy Seas - Hop Harvest Ale from Heavy Seas Beer
3.8 out of 5 based on 48 ratings.
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