Brewdog: Libertine Porter (Scotland: Porter: 6.5% ABV)

Visual: Black. Large coffee froth head  but doesn’t last long.

Nose:  Cream cheese, paprika and sour dough. Coffee and chives. Quite a bit of roasted malt. Dried chilli.

Body:  Frothy. Bitter chocolate. Spicy character. Dry roasted peanuts. Paprika and oak. Raisins.

Finish: Very dry hops. Bitter roasted character. Nuttiness. Bitter chocolate. Bubble gum.

Conclusion:  One of the odd beers that doesn’t take very well to warmth. It’s a solid variant of the Alice Porter beer, but froths up early and easily as soon as it hits the tongue.  The froth releases a bitter character and spice. It seems a much more reactive beer than Alice, unfurling as soon as it enters your mouth.

Much more bitter as well, from the bitter chocolate character to the dry hoppy finish. This is where the fact it doesn’t respond well to heat comes into play. Chilling it down slightly it slips down nicely with just a bitter kick. Warm the hop finish becomes too clinging.

The base beer is solid and here the extra touches give it its own distinct character. It has moved from the Baltic porter style of Alice Porter to a much more American heavy hopped styling. It’s a nice beer, but as mentioned you really have to keep it slightly cool to keep it working.

Overall I would say I prefer the Christmas Porter as a variant of the Alice style, but this is a fun beer. Spicier, it feels like it has been aged in spiced wine casks or made with mulled spices.  Bitter almost to a fault. Not ever dull I will say that. I can see why it isn’t a regular beer though. It has it’s own character but does not better the Alice Porter and I can’t imagine having more than one in a session before it gets cloying.

Not bad, fun with some of that weird bubble gum elements showing through. As an occasional beer I’m sure I will revisit it but it hasn’t carved out a proper niche to fill that other beers don’t do better.

Still a fun fiery porter.

Background: I drank this about a year back on tap at a Brewdog bar.  I didn’t review it at the time as I knew it was due out on bottle soon. Then Brewdog decided not to release it on bottle as it was too close to Alice Porter, releasing instead Libertine Black Ale.  Typical. Anyway,  about a year later there was a small batch of it release via Brewdogs shop so I decided to give it a go.  A heavily dry hopped porter, I’m not always sold on heavy hopping on porters and stouts but they can work if done well.