The Baltic porter is a traditional English style, developed by the British in the 1800s for export to their buddies in the Russian Court. The Baltic porter is an interesting breed, because while it’s a porter in name and flavor, it’s not an ale. All Baltic porters are lagers, meaning they’re brewed with a strain of yeast that ferments for longer times at colder temperatures and contributes a cleaner, crisper flavor to the brew. The Baltic porter is a dark black beer, sometimes with garnet and ruby highlights. It is known for an assertive chocolate malt that imparts sweetness and often hints of toffee, licorice, and roastedness, and it can be quite strong, ranging from 7.6 to 9.3 percent. Today, Peaks & Pints presents a to-go flight of Baltic porters — a flight we call Peaks and Pints Pilot Program: Baltic Porters On The Fly.
Peaks and Pints Pilot Program: Baltic Porters On The Fly
Threshold Barrel Aged Neptune
“The magnitude or intensity that must be exceeded for a certain reaction, phenomenon, result, or condition to occur or be manifested” is the definition of “threshold” in most dictionaries. Threshold is also the passion project for Portland, Oregon, couple Jarek and Sara Szymanski who opened Threshold Brewing & Blending the beer-centric neighborhood of Montavilla two years ago. Threshold grabbed their award-winning Baltic porter and aged in 12 months in whiskey barrels for subtle oak and booze with nuttiness and cocoa leading the way.
Block 15 Ocean Man
In director Jack Arnold’s Creature From the Black Lagoon (1954), our first glimpse of the Lovecraftian Gill-Man is disappointingly brief. With Joseph Gershenson’s superb, blaring score trumpeting its appearance, a webbed, taloned hand rises from the Amazon River’s inky depths and claws the shore. A drawing of the fame Gill-Man graces Block 15 Brewing’s Ocean Man can. Inspired by the lands surrounding the Baltic Sea, Ocean Man is bold, rich, and highly drinkable Baltic Porter with notes of roasted coffee, dried plums, and dark chocolate, and earthy, malty-sweet aromas are a balance of land and sea. This Baltic Porter is deep in color, like the bottom of the sea, but rises with a clean finish that leaves you thirsting for more.
Structures Brewing, in Bellingham, recently added Bryan Cardwell as a co-owner with James Alexander. Alexander met him when Cardwell was brewmaster down the street at Chuckanut Brewery. Cardwell also did a stint as senior brewer at pFriem Family Brewers in Hood River, Oregon. Silvernail Baltic porter will be forever known as Cardwell’s first Structures beer. As with many Structures beers, a bird graces the can. A Gyrfalcon, specifically — a fierce predator in the High Arctic — drawn by Hash, who can be found at @thehashishin.
Wayfinder Gravity Drop
9% ABV, 25 IBU
Baltic porters are fermented with lager yeast, and aged to properly develop and round their flavors, so it takes both skill and patience to properly pull the subtleties out of this somewhat rare style of beer, which Wayfinder did. Their Gravity Drop Baltic porter has intense chocolate, fig and caramel aroma that drinks warmly and falls off the deep end. It’s rich, elegant, and warming to the bone.
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