Recently, I was fortunate enough to meet up with someone from Rohrbach Brewing Company, Peter. I really enjoyed myself discussing some of my favorite beers from Rohrbach Brewing Company, as well as what beers are to come. From what I’ve heard everyone should be very excited for what is up and coming from our friends in Rochester. After finishing our time of chit chat about beer and life, Peter gave me a few cans from Rohrbach Brewing Company. One of them being their Vanilla Porter. Though I’ve had it in the past I am very excited to try it again and give it a thorough rundown!
Off of Rohrbach Brewing Company’s website I was able to dig a nice introduction on what to expect from Vanilla Porter.
‘A rich complex English-style porter brewed with a variety of malt: chocolate, caramel, black, and roasted barley. Authentic vanilla is added after fermentation which gives the beer yet another layer of complexity.’
The Beer: Vanilla Porter by Rohrbach Brewing Company
ABV: 5.9% IBU 23
Black Roasted Barley
Can to Glass
Wow! This beer is crazy when first pouring it into my glass, the color and head blow me away. Upon finishing my pour, the Vanilla Porter boasted an amazing three finger widths head which seems to be sticking with us. I’m sure the Roasted Barley had a hand in the head retention. It’s not at all difficult to see where the black color of this beer was obtained from when glancing at the malts used. The Chocolate and Black malts both provide a nice thick dark appearance to beers.
The aromas of Vanilla Porter do not exactly jump out at you but once you give the beer a good sniff they are easily noticed for your enjoyment. Like I said they don’t jump out at you, though they do flow very well together, creating a sweet, vanilla, and chocolate aroma with a slight burnt/ashy characteristic in the background. There isn’t any aroma that sticks out more than the others, again they come together to form the perfect combination. When thinking of the aromas it’s not difficult to guess where each of them came from. The Chocolate malt provides a smooth chocolate aroma but leaves out any burnt or ashy characteristics. Those come from the Roasted Barely, again I only got a small sense of the burnt aroma in the background. I’ve seen at times the burnt/ ashy characteristics can be a bit much, not in this case. Perfect amount if you ask me. The sweet aroma, which when I really sit on it has a nice caramel note to it, comes from the Caramel malt. It’s a very nice nose tingling sweetness that can really spark your interest for Vanilla Porter.
With my first sip I was able to notice the flavor of this beer is very similar to it aromas. Rohrbach was correct when saying that Vanilla Porter is a ‘complex English-style porter.’ Though it is complex, it’s not in such a way that you have to fight through numerous flavors that it becomes obnoxious. No, Vanilla Porter is simply a beer that you should take the time to enjoy and make your way through the different layers it holds with each sip. The English-style is very easy to notice if you’ve ever had them in the past. Though I am not sure of the hops used, I’m willing to bet East Kent Goldings or Fuggle were used.
So what does Vanilla Porter taste like? Vanilla obviously, though it is a main character it doesn’t jump out and collide with the other flavors. It does remain throughout the entire sip and then sticks around in the after taste. There is a slight caramel sweetness that sort of floats around I guess you could say. I like that the sweetness doesn’t stick out too much, Caramel malt has taken over at times in my past experiences, it’s a minor note in the big scheme of things in this case. Two of my favorite aspects of Vanilla Porter are the bittersweet chocolate and burnt/ashy flavors. The Black and Chocolate malts truly come together and provide this intriguing bittersweet chocolatey combination that brings the beer to another level. It even rises up in the after taste. Delicious. And finally the Roasted Barely brings my favorite burnt/ashy flavor that I love in stouts and porters. Just like in the aromas it doesn’t charge in the lead but marches out in a smooth manner with the other flavors. Altogether Vanilla Porter is a great tasting beer.
There isn’t much bitterness to it, not that I was expecting any with an IBU of 23. If anything it’s more of a bittersweet after taste with the characteristics I spoke of before. The overall mouthfeel is a medium body with a slight creamy residue. Most likely from the Roasted Barley. A perfect ending for each sip.
Vanilla Porter is a delicious English-stlye porter that presents delicious mouth watering aromas that is followed by a perfect layering of flavors. Vanilla Porter is not a beer that you want to drink fast, instead take the time to enjoy every aspect the beer has in store for you. From the sweet vanilla to the burnt/ashy flavors, there is nothing about this beer that you want to miss out on.
Thanks again to Peter for providing me with this beer! And thanks to Rohrbach Brewing Company for brewing such a delicious beer!
And a final thanks to my readers! Cheers!!!!!