Evil Czech Voodoo Vanilla Rye Porter

The American Czechs are at it again. Will they managed to tame the giant of a rye porter (known to be a bit intimidating) by adding a little vanilla and a whole lot of attitude? Well, your guess is probably as good as mine. Actually, it might be better.

This beer brings a lot of head. I had to carefully pour three different times (letting the beer settle in between) to get this glass full. The copious head is frothy and thick with the aroma of burned coffee grounds and earth. It sounds like it would be bad, but it's a good mix of bitter and sweet, so I'm okay with the smell of this black beer.

First sip is bitter as all-get-out. The malt is not burned - it's charred with vanilla poking it's cheery little head out of the coffee and earth blackness to see what has happened to all of its friends after that giant bitter meteor hit. It sees nothing, so it heads back down the hidey hole never to be seen again. A sip is not the right way to look at a big beer, though.

Tip-in is bitter cherries and scorched earth. The middle brings coffee beans, wood, and light vanilla into the mix, but the effect is very rough and a bit malevolent. The finish is a torrent of bitter chocolate, burned grains, seared coffee, and spikes.

Bottom Line: Inelegant and unapproachable, this beer gets better with some heat in it, but not good enough.

1.75/5

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