try not review old beer, but if it’s within the brewery’s designated
freshness window and it’s not fouled up beyond belief, I’ll still review
it. That’s a good way to disclaim this review of what I assume is a
late winter/early spring seasonal - Great Lakes Alberta Clipper Porter.
It’s a porter brewed with chocolate and raspberries and the flavor
combinations have held up pretty well. It makes for a fine dessert beer
even on a warm summer’s night like this.
I poured a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass. It had an enjoy by date of 9/13/15 and cost $5 ($0.42 per ounce).
Appearance: Seemingly black or brown but actually a very dark shade of
blood red or purple. Some lighter red highlights. Pours to a two-finger,
tan, foamy head which retains and laces fairly well.
Smell: Raspberries are the most prominent; very sweet-smelling like jam.
A mild dark chocolate presence plus a hint of oxidation.
Taste: Chocolate stouts and porters tend to be some of my favorite
beers, so it’s rare I find one that I dislike and this is no exception. I
notice the raspberry immediately; it’s light at first with a slight
jelly flavor, but not overly-sweetened. I also taste the base porter
recipe and it’s pretty classic and traditional. A bit more roasty than
most, though it does have a light malty sweetness and a taste similar to
that found in a milk stout. The finish is the best part as there’s a
dark chocolate taste which is amplified by the roasted malt. The
raspberry flavor comes surging back and tastes very much like puree.
It’s even a bit tart. Though I do detect a slight tang, which I’ll
assume is due to the age. Still, it’s pretty delectable and I’ll be this
is even better when fresh.
Drinkability: I’m a bit surprised to find that this is such a strong
beer with a 7.8% ABV weight. Great Lakes Alberta Clipper Porter feels
and drinks like something half that size. The mouthfeel is rather thin
with a low carbonation. Thankfully, there is no alcohol presence, though
that’s a concession I’d be willing to make for a bigger, bolder brew.