Roebling Imperial Porter: Vanilla and coffee never had it so good!
I’ve got to be honest. The state of Ohio rarely crosses my mind. I mean the name of the state itself is kind of boring. Go ahead. Say it. Ohio. I just got bored. I’m starting to think I’m missing out, though. There are great things happening in Ohio! I hear that Cleveland rocks! The you have Cincinnati. There’s Cincinnati Chili. (Awesome!) The Cincinnati Reds. (No comment.) The Cincinnati Bengals. (So close! Better luck next year, guys!) And Rivertown Brewery in Cincinnati. What can I even say about those folks?! They must be magicians! Roebling Vanilla Espresso Imperial Porter is a divine concoction and worthy of praise. It may even get me to go to Ohio someday!
Roebling Imperial Porter got its name from John A. Roebling. I have no idea who he was, but there is a bridge named after him that links Cincinnati with Covington, KY. I’m assuming that if you get a major bridge named after you, you must have been pretty special. If you get a bridge and a beer named after you, you must have been a giant among men!
Roebling pours nice and black with brown highlights. (It’s always interesting to me when I pour a porter. It’s not “thick” like a stout. It almost seems like black water instead of motor oil.) There is barely any head that forms, and the small amount of residual carbonation doesn’t lace much.
There is lots of coffee in the beginning of the aroma. It has a vanilla punch that almost has a spicy burn to it. Some rich caramel works well with the dark fruit that rises as it warms. The alcohol makes its appearance at the back of the nose.
If found it odd but interesting that hops were pretty far forward in the flavor. Not anything like an IPA, but you definitely taste them. Layered on top of the hops is a very strong, deep-roasted espresso which adds a nice bitterness and a slight ashiness. You almost expect to end up chewing on some coffee grounds. To balance the bitterness and ash is some sweet, creamy caramel. There is some alcohol bite at the back of the palate. The finish is a little oaky, ashy, and dry.
Roebling is just about perfect! I give it 4.8 out of 5. I really enjoyed it, and I highly recommend it!
I look forward to meeting you one day, Ohio!