The 2012 Pilot Series Baltic Porter Ale (brewed with cherries, brown sugar, vanilla beans and oak chips) from Alaskan Brewing Company in Juneau, Alaska pours out black as black can be in color with no light getting through and is topped with a two finger, mocha colored head that reduces down quite quickly to a thin film with a small collar. On the nose, this smells like a barrel-aged craft beer. Probably a result of the oak chips and vanilla beans. Aromas of roasted grain, sweet cherry, oak, vanilla and light bittersweet chocolate. In the mouth, rich and very smooth. Flavors of cherry, dark chocolate, vanilla, charred oak, roasted grain and a distinct sweetness from the brown sugar. Full bodied. Low to moderate carbonation. Some lacing on the glass. Thick, chewy, slightly viscous mouthfeel. The finish is long and as the layers of flavor peel away the oaky, sweet vanilla is left.
A wonderful beer with exceptional flavor that comes at you in waves. On the sweet side right now but at 9.8% ABV this will age very well and should get even better, if that is possible. Highly recommended.
22 ounce bottle, 9.8% ABV
Beer 307 of 366 for 2012