bought three bottles of Butte Creek beers when I was at Mendocino’s
taproom in Ukiah and all but one seem to be old. That’s a really
terrible way to run a taproom (but that’s the subject for another
sermon). Of the three that were old, Butte Creek Organic Porter has at
least held up fairly well. Tangy to be sure, but the base brew is still
detectable. I’m sure this would be more than simply an above-average
beer when it’s fresh.
I poured a 12oz bottle into a nonic pint glass. It was bottled on 8/31/14 and cost $3 ($0.25 per ounce).
Appearance: Dark brown hue, though more of a dark burgundy when held up
to the light. Pours to a small layer of tan foam which never completely
dissipates and leaves minor lacing.
Smell: Sweet dark malts with slight fruity character. Mild though.
Taste: What separates porters from stouts is that they rely on their
sweetness rather than intensely roasted and bitter malts. That’s evident
here as there’s no roasty sensation at all, though it’s certainly
nothing in the amber malt range. Mild notes of dark fruit or dried fruit
with a hint of milk chocolate and perhaps some iced coffee undertones. I
do get some slight metallic or astringent tanginess on the finish, but
it’s fairly minor. What’s here is at least enjoyable, but not amazing.
Drinkability: For an old bottle, Butte Creek Organic Porter still drinks
surprisingly easy. The mouthfeel is a little tepid, but in no way flat
or watery. Soft and smooth in texture with a finish to match; it leaves
virtually no aftertaste. At 6% ABV it should have more body and
complexity than this, though. Perhaps it does when it’s fresh but it’s
unlikely I’ll ever know.