Beer of the Weekend #791: Stone 6th Anniversary Porter

It’s Wednesday night, which means I allow myself to have a couple brews. One of them is a little something I found in the bargain bin at the co-op and could not resist buying: 6th Anniversary Porter, brewed by the Stone Brewing Company of Escondido, California.

The color is black but I don’t think it is opaque. Two fingers of tan, dense, bubbly head settles slowly and leaves trails of lacing stuck to the glass. The aroma is an intriguing, though somewhat faint, medley of smoked malt, barrel wood, chocolate, a touch of black licorice, and hints of dark fruit. It has an alcohol-laced edge. The mouthfeel is smooth like an oatmeal stout, but the smoked/roasted character makes the flavor very bitter. Frankly, it tastes more like the malt was charred to a crisp instead of roasted or smoked. There are also flavors of black licorice, dark fruit, chocolate, and molasses. It is also woody, so it has that barrel-aged quality to it, too. The alcohol is noticeable but not overpowering.

Fun facts about 6th Anniversary Porter:

• Style: Smoked Porter.

• Price: $5.99 for a 22-ounce bottle at the New Pioneer Food Co-op in Iowa City.

• Alcohol content: 8 percent ABV.

• Stone is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year and is releasing a series of “encore” beers in acknowledgment. 6th Anniversary Porter is part of the series and was released in April.

The Quiet Man’s grade: B.

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