Beer Reviews – September 2008

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It’s already September and slowly getting colder. I’m not about to break into a full, stoutdrinking frenzy, but I will drink its closely related brother, the porter. Historically, the stout and the porter were known as the same thing. The darker version was thought as a “stout porter,” which has slowly been bastardized overs time to be known just as a stout. But in that bastardization, we have been able to develop some unique variations to the style––giving us some pretty gnarly beers. The standard porter is a light brown to dark brown in color, often with ruby highlights. Much like the flavor, the aroma is malt-forward with roast, chocolate and some caramel, nutty, toffee-like characteristics.

King’s Peak Porter
Brewery: Uinta
Abv: 4 r> Average Price: $7.99 / Six-Pack
Serving Style: 12 oz Bottle
Rating: ****½
Description: Kings Peak pours a deep brown with amber highlights and a thin, off-white head. There is a deeply roasted taste with hints of chocolate, coffee and soft hop bitterness. This brew finishes quite dry.

Overview: Named after King’s Peak (the highest point in the state of Utah), this beer has stood its ground in numerous competitions. Although it’s been entered as a schwarzbier, this brew is versatile and good for almost any occasion. For those of you who enjoy drinking beer while eating, let me recommend that this guy goes great with most grilled meals and German cuisine.

Where to Find: It’s commonly found at most grocery stores in sixers, on tap at The Bayou and is proudly served at SLC Derby events.

Polygamy Porter
Brewery: Utah Brewers Cooperative / Wasatch Beers
Abv: 4 r> Average Price: $7.99 / Six-Pack
Serving Style: 12 oz Bottle
Rating: *** ½

Description: A dark pour with ruby hints, this guy puts off a decent, pillowlike head with some soft lacing around your glass. The aroma is ample in your typical roast with a touch of coffee and caramel/chocolate poking their way through. The taste supplies a prominent amount of roasted malts coupled with light chocolate and caramel. This beer has a lighter body and dry finish.

Overview: I don’t think it would be appropriate to do a porter review without including Polygamy Porter. This flagship beer for Wasatch Beers has been time-tested and people keep asking for more. Not to go unnoticed, this brew recently took two major awards. It received silver medals in the brown porter category by the World Beer Cup and the North American Brewers Association. All in all, I suggest giving this classic brew a shot.

Where to Find: It’s found at almost every grocery store and has made its way into The Bayou and Wasatch Pub.

Rockwell Porter
Brewery: Hoppers Bar & Grill
Abv: 4 r> Average Price: $ 3.75/Pint
Serving Style: On Tap
Rating: ***

Description: This brew pours a deep brownish color and puts off a soft creamy head. Aromatics of roast with a blend of toffee and chocolate ease you into a mouthful of a pretty decent brew. With a malty backbone, this guy has the qualities of your standard porter—roast, chocolate and toffee. It finishes dry and is a touch stronger in body than I expected.

Overview: This beer is another decent brew from the fellas at Hoppers. This beer is a quality prospect if you are looking for something true to the style. This guy would go killer with any barbeque dish or a dessert if you are feelin’ crazy. I wish I had one in my hand right now.

Where to Find: This beer can only be found on tap at Hoppers Bar & Grill. Here’s a little tip for you craft brew drinkers that enjoy supporting the local beer scene. In the upcoming months, breweries will be getting prepped for their entrances in the Great American Beer Festival. What that means for you is that you need to get your ass down to all of our finest breweries and catch a sampling of limited release brews only available to us Utahns.