Poured opaque with a nice looking brown, two finger foam. Retention was outstanding leaving a nice solid covering over my beer. As it receded it also became creamy and thick to the eye. Lacing was thick but not lasting.
Aroma is solid for a porter: roasted, chocolate with a side of smoke and even coffee. Toffee and bread malt add to the complexity. Even a touch of chili character eventually comes through too.
Taste is just a complex and big as the aroma. The foam, as it touches your lips, adds a nice creaminess up front. Sweet caramel and toffee notes meet the tongue first followed by a wave of bread and smoke. The smoke character I would describe as peat and about as perfect a compliment to the beer as can ever be expected. A bit of spice and bitterness into the end and finish. The finish rounds out with some heat: I think from both the alcohol and chilis. It warms, even in the stomach.
This is quite a big beer with a mild carbonation that is accented by the creaminess of the foam.
This is top notch. I don't care for smokey beers but this one did it perfectly, as not to be an annoyance. Big, chewy, and outstanding. I didn't think this was going to win me over so I only bought one. Yeah, one. Egghead. Enjoy!