Saturday, 5 May 2012

HEAD-TO-HEAD #9: Alice Porter vs. Christmas Porter (BrewDog)


Alice Porter is modelled on a 300 year old Baltic Porter recipe and given a modern twist. It pours dark ruby with a dark beige, short-lasting head. It has a malty nose with some pear. Sharp, dark and jammy fruit up front leading into a spicy, hop-accented finish which is a little harsh-tasting. Too highly carbed for me but the body is reasonable. In terms of flavour it's fruitier and sharper than most Baltic Porter's I've tried, though to be fair it does proclaim itself a 'renaissance' Baltic Porter due to the use of a couple of modern cross continental hop varieties.

Christmas Porter is a reworking of Alice Porter with added orange zest, cacao and a pinch of chilli. Pours a touch darker than Alice Porter with a slightly foamier tan head. Similar aroma to its sister beer. In taste, the beer is a little more complex and rounded with what seems to be a more pronounced roast malt flavour. Less of the sharp-tasting hop notes come through too. It also seems fuller in body. How much the cacao contributes to this I'm not sure. The chilli heat shows somewhat in the finish and feels quite different to the usual alcohol-derived heat. Sweetness is also imparted from the chilli. Luckily none of the extraneous ingredients overpower the beer. Christmas Porter is definitely preferable to Alice Porter to my tastebuds, being a more satisfying drink. 


1 comment:

  1. I love beers that use chiles, but I've never heard one being used in a Christmas beer. Here in the US of A, our Christmas beers are usually excessively spiced with cinnamon and the like. Sounds like I'd prefer BrewDog's version.


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