Editors' Picks: Baltic Porter

Challenging to brew, maybe. Yet so easy to ensconce yourself and give in to dark, lush, warming liquid malt.

Craft Beer and Brewing Mar 10, 2020 - 2 min read

Editors' Picks: Baltic Porter Primary Image

Komes Porter Baltycki

Along with Kormoran Porter Warminski, this is an archetypal modern-day Polish porter. Thick as thick, black as black, with light brown foam and a nose of figs, licorice, and savory roast. Leans a bit naughty-sweet, with welcome warmth and long-lingering tail of figs grilled over a fire.
ABV: 9%
Loc: Miłosław, Poland

Duck-Rabbit Baltic Porter

Brewed in America but big enough to be Polish, this winter release was a coveted item in beer-trading circles—at least a decade ago. Now it’s an undersung classic. Chocolate, espresso, and roast nuts show in the nose, while the full body carries a soft sweetness and restrained roast bitterness.
ABV: 9%
Loc: Farmville, North Carolina

Kormoran Imperium Prunum

Poland’s rarest whale is an extra-big Baltic porter aged on smoke-dried plums. Looks thickly viscous and oily in the glass, giving a nose of tangy stone fruit and mellow woodsmoke. Gentle, pruney acidity with muted roast, softly sweet, on full body and a long-lingering smoky finish.
ABV: 11%
Loc: Olsztyn, Poland

Pohjala Öö

Richly vinous notes weave through the nose along with fine cigar tobacco, wet leather, and dark-chocolate-covered sour cherries. The flavor evokes the engaging char on an artisanal rustic bread loaf and cocoa powder dusted on a dark chocolate truffle. Substitute for a Cabernet Sauvignon next time you grill up a thick steak—the rich Maillard notes are the perfect complement for quality meat cooked over an open flame.
ABV: 10.5%
IBUs: 60
Loc: Tallinn, Estonia