On a visit to Mane Liquor recently I was gifted a bottle of Beavertown Smog Rocket (they are such nice guys!) and so I thought it was only appropriate to buy some Feral Smoked Porter and do a little comparative tasting.
Beavertown Smog Rocket – London | Smoked Porter | 5.4% ABV | 23 IBU
Feral Smoked Porter – Swan Valley | Smoked Porter | 4.7% ABV | 22 IBU
Beavertown Smog Rocket:
First I have to say that the name Smog Rocket is sensational; it’s fun and descriptive in just two words. It’s a smoked porter with magnum and chinook hops; the malt bill is made up of a base of Simpsons Best and speciality malts including smoke, caramalt, crystal, oats, Munich, brown, chocolate and black.
“Any style of beer can be smoked; the goal is to reach a pleasant balance between the smoke character and the base beer style”, BJCP Style Guidelines
Sadly the Smog Rocket was fiercely over carbonated resulting in about a fifth of the bottle being lost to the floor as I did the hand-under-glass-run to the sink. The head finally settled to about 2mm thick over a lovely muddy ruby brown colour.
The ashtray aroma hit me in the face, as it settled I could get a background of bacon and fruits like apples and pineapples. The flavour was difficult, the initial slam of ashtray was quite confronting, so much so that I genuinely struggled in drinking it. It wasn’t until the last couple of sips that I started to get hints of black bitter coffee and raisins.
Feral Smoked Porter:
Smoked Porter: Not officially recognised as it’s own style, instead falling under the more general ‘smoked beers’. Check out BJCP (beer judge certification program) guidelines here.
Compared to Smog Rocket the Feral Smoked Porter poured black, almost inky. Curiously there was zero carbonation, yet the others in the four pack had been fine, perhaps it was the beer or maybe my glass, I don’t know.
The aroma was a lovely honey smoked bacon with those smokey flavours carrying through on the palate alongside cured meats and a very dry finish that sat at the back of my throat.