I enjoy drinking beer on Fridays – at this point in my life, it’s a well established ritual, a means of slinking into a couple days’ rest.
I’ll be the first to admit that sometimes I done-drank one too many. It happens. Not often, but I know that the possibility exists. I just get too excited by the warm fuzzy feelings that arise when slurping on deliciousness. And then I’m cooked.
But sometimes after a particularly arduous week, when I find myself drained by work or just the world at large, all I want is a good beer. One. A single beverage that will quench not only my thirst but my existential misgivings, my doubts about the blessing that is life. Fortunately, as the ancestral blood of maritime carpenters runs through my veins, a tasty brew is often enough to assuage even my most ostensibly unshakable qualms about reality.
Vanilla Porter is one such brew.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been periodically hosting small gatherings that’ve seen my comrades bringing over an assortment of liquid goodies. While my friends like to party when they can, none of them are certifiable boozehounds and thus they usually end up leaving a couple of cold ones behind. Truthfully, I usually ignore etiquette and try not to drink these leftovers, hoping that my buds will have a treat next time they stop by.
But not tonight.
Not wanting to put away a whole sixer (or even a fat-ass tall boy), I decided to rummage through my fridge in search of a new beer. To my delight, I found a single bottle of Vanilla Porter. I had never sampled this concoction before, but since I’m a fan of both vanilla and porters, I figured it’d be a solid choice.
Before diving in, I hit up the brewery’s website in search of a description. Here’s what I found:
Who would have thought deep in the jungles of Papua New Guinea and Madagascar grew the perfect ingredient to build an extraordinary Porter in Colorado? An ale that has all the chocolate and roasted nut flavor of a classic Porter, with an enigmatic surprise thrown in for good measure, real vanilla bean. Breckenridge Brewery’s Vanilla Porter. A vanilla kiss in a rich, dark sea.
Okay, time to do the damn thang.
Vanilla Porter pours smoothly, filling the glass with the rich darkness indicative of porters and stouts. Examining the potable through light, I noticed that it touts an almost maroon hue. Additionally, there was very little head on top, but what’s there has an appetizing density.
When employing my pre-sip sniff, I find that the brew carries a pleasant, though faint, odor that I’d like to call roasty-sweet. Definitely a good segue into the actual drankin’! Siphoning Vanilla Porter into my gullet, I have to say that it’s impressive. Most impressive. Light in both body and carbonation, the porter sloshes around my mouth and down my throat with a supreme ease. Although the brew is fairly thin, there’s also a creaminess that adheres to the tongue.
Flavor-wise, Vanilla Porter is no joke. It doesn’t taste like a vanilla milkshake, but there is something in this beer that conjures up memories of baking with mom. As I drink, I feel as though I’m reliving the gustatory sensations of sneaking vanilla cupcakes, but with the welcome addition of alcohol. This beverage is sweet, but not sickly-sweet – alcoholic, but not blindingly-alcoholic. It’s well-rounded enough to entice both the beer-snobs (that’s me) and those looking for something more palatable.
The label on the bottle boasts that the contents are Remarkable – Partakable.
I can’t disagree with either.
Vanilla Porter, your verdict is in: