poured a 12oz bottle into a nonic pint glass. It had a best by date of
7/9/14 and came as part of a mixpack for $15.99 ($1.33 per bottle or
$0.11 per ounce).
Appearance: Opaque black body with a large, fluffy, frothy, dark tan head which retains and laces extremely well.
Smell: Classic dark malty aroma with hints of dairy and milk chocolate and a faint floral scent.
Taste: I drink so many experimental style beers so often that I forget
how good a beer brewed in a classic style can be. Smuttynose Robust
Porter is a definite to-spec robust porter and would hit every note on a
BJCP taste test. It’s tasty and well-balanced, though not quite to the
point of a being a mind blower.
The palette begins with a sweet taste of dark malts, and looking at the
recipe on the brewery’s website, there’s quite a lot of them here. An
interesting combination of milk chocolate, cola, and maybe a hint of
cherry. It becomes a little bitter through the middle with a slightly
toasty flavor. This grows stronger towards the end as the Cascade hops
make their presence known and impart a slight citrusy or flowery taste.
Additional notes of dark chocolate complement the bitterness well.
Drinkability: The word “robust” in a beer’s name tends to imply strong
flavor and a huge body, but that’s not really the case here. Though the
palette is plenty flavorful, Smuttynose Robust Porter is not intense or
intimidating. The mouthfeel is calm and soft with a smooth texture and
finish. It does leave a slightly dry aftertaste akin to burnt toast, but
it’s easily tolerable. For 6% ABV, this beer has the right amount of
taste for its weight and is satisfying just one serving at a time.