Beer Review – Breckenridge Vanilla Porter

I’ve had a bottle of the Breckenridge Vanilla Porter in my fridge for about a week, and though I’d never heard of Breckenridge Brewery before, I bought it because I was intrigued by the name. After reading a review of this beer on “Stuff I Write about Wine”, I decided to move it up to the front of the “beer review” line, since I love dark beer and am a sucker for vanilla. If a food or beverage has vanilla in it, there’s a very good chance that I’ll try it (think creme brulee, rice pudding, vanilla milkshake, vanilla latte, Nilla wafers, a glass of Tuaca liqueur, etc.).  Will this brew live up to my expectations?

Appearance: Dark brown, practically walnut color. Quarter inch of head that subsides quickly and leaves little to no lacing.

Aroma: Dark chocolate. Medium roast coffee. Faint smell of vanilla.

Taste: Light carbonation. Mostly bittersweet chocolate palate, with some coffee and a hint of vanilla on the finish.

Though I enjoyed the Breckenridge Vanilla Porter, the word “remarkable”, which is quite prominent on the label, has led to some mild disappointment. I was expecting to be overwhelmed by the vanilla, but in reality, I found myself searching for it (I guess I shouldn’t put too much value on a label!). I definitely liked this beer, but I didn’t love it. This is a very easy drinking beer, and with an ABV of 4.7%, having more than one shouldn’t be a problem. I give the Breckenridge Vanilla Porter a B.

10 replies »

  1. I’m sorry you didn’t love it! (Than again, I didn’t make it . . .)
    You’re right; the vanilla is very subtle; it’s more of a nuance than the whole darn point of the thing. I also agree that the use of “remarkable” on the label is kinda silly (but as a wine chick, I’ve learned to pretty much ignore label descriptors).

    Thanks for the shout-out!



  2. Though the beer was good, but not “remarkable”, I’m still curious to try your marinated strip steak recipe. Since the beer was just ok, I suppose I could substitute any good porter for the Breckenridge. Smuttynose Robust Porter perhaps?



  3. I’m bummed to read your review of the Breckinridge Vanilla Porter – it’s a staple in my fridge and I really enjoy it. Maybe it’s because I haven’t paid too much attention to the label…lol.


  4. I, too, searched for the vanilla and barely found it. Only 4.7%? Wow, it smelled much stronger than that. You got much more head (no pun intended) than I did. It was noticeable mid-pour and I gave the last of it a little bit more of an aggressive pour, but alas, nothing.


  5. More head he says. Lucky me I suppose! Heh

    I usually take photos immediately after pouring. I work as fast as I can to get a decent shot, so the beers usually look “fluffier” than they really are. Now if I can only figure out how to get the stupid flash to not look so harsh…


  6. At the urging of my better half, I tried so this at Eulogy. I can’t complain as I get almost a whole beer when she gets to try a vanilla porter.

    I have to agree with G-Lo. Remarkable? No. Vanilla flavor? Eh, not so much. However, even though it comes up short on the vanilla flavor, this is a very drinkable porter.


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