I’ve tried a few of Bath Ales’ beers before and was naturally looking forward to trying this one when Cinabar’s Mom bought it me for a treat. The bottle label states that it’s a specially crafted porter with hints of rum, coffee and vanilla. Maris Otter Barley, Challenger and Bramling Cross Hops, and roasted chocolate malt are all added into the brewing. The porter is then fine filtered for quality. On opening the beer there was a smell that mixed barley and chocolate. Pouring this very dark porter reminded me of a stout. Wikipedia tells me that stouts and porters are very closely linked as both are made with dark malts. This porter tastes a little like a stout without the meal like feeling you get when drinking a Guinness or Murphy’s. It’s hard to pick out the flavours as they suggest on the bottle, but that’s not a bad thing. There is a definite taste of chocolate within this dark beer, but the other flavours of barley and hops fit round each other like a group of familiar friends in conversation. The chocolate complements the fine quality barley and hops to create a sweet edge to the bitterness that makes this porter a very easy and pleasant drink. Fuller’s London Porter better watch out! The only thing I’d have to disagree with Bath Ales is the fact that this beer should never be considered as a seasonal festive treat, but should be available all year round. I can get chocolate beer and Thistle beer when I like, so why can’t I have this too?