Brewed this one on the 28th of February and I had it kegged by 12 March... it hasn't even been in the keg for 10 days and I only have a few pints left. Had some company over the other day and they hit the keg hard - like really hard. I was hoping to let this batch age a bit and see how it changes over time, though it ain't going to happen. However, I was able to get a few bottles out of the keg for the National Homebrew Competition. If I didn't manage to totally screw up the carbonation with my homemade beer gun, it should do well enough.
The Darker Side of Mild II: Brown Porter
Appearance – Pours a not quite opaque black color with a thick tan head that leaves nice lacing. When held to the light it is a clear, ruby color.
Smell – Willy Wonka chocolate factory, Bailey's Irish Creme, and chocolate-caramel cake. Probably the most inviting and complex aroma of any beer I've brewed. Lots and lots of dark chocolate, sweet caramel, toffee, fresh pumpernickle bread, black as night coffee, and chocolate covered raisins at the end. No hops.
Taste – Pretty much the same as the aroma. Very complex, each sip is a new flavor - the beer is brewed with 7 malts and it really shows. Everything is well balanced and the balance of flavors is decidedly malty. The beer finishes a bit sweet, though the hop bitterness really does a good job of keeping it from being cloying. Right at the end you get a touch of toasty-grainy malt. No hops.
Mouthfeel – Thick, viscous, and full bodied. I call lots of beers creamy, though this one takes the cake. No pun intended.
Drinkability & Notes – I think this would only get better with time. Tastes freaking amazing as is, though a bit of age would probably let some of those malts intensify in flavor. Extremely drinkable, you could drink this stuff all day and night. No alcohol notes or off flavors that I can tell. It is not in my nature to gloat or showboat, but I can proudly say I think this is way better than Fullers Porter (the holy grail of commercial brown porters IMO). I'll probably re-brew this one at the end of the month instead of my usual Ploughman mild.
O.G: 1.056, F.G: 1.016, 5.2% ABV, 30 IBU, Wyeast 1318 London Ale III
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