Mac’s Blackwatch Cream Porter is a porter that blends both traditional and American styles to create a unique take on the porter name. Or so they say. Let’s see if this 5.3%ABV brew is as good as they claim.
Once again MacTarnahan’s redefines “smooth”. Striking a perfect balance between the classic Northwest and Celtic styles, Blackwatch is a remarkably distinctive new style of porter. With expert use of malted barley, unmalted grains and oatmeal, Blackwatch Cream Porter delivers unforgettable rich taste and smooth texture. Our attention to detail has recently been rewarded for the second time at the 2008 Great American Beer Festival where Blackwatch won a Gold medal in the Porter category. This marks the second GABF gold medal for Blackwatch, which also won the award in 2001, the very first year it was entered.
The beer pours a ridiculously dark black. Even when holding the glass up to the light, no light penetrated the liquid. The head is two fingers of cola colored goodness, that remains for a long time and leaves behind heavy webbing. Think Guinness Draught.
My first thought upon smelling the beer was Whoppers and coffee. There was an overpowering nose of chocolate with hints of malt. Yummy.
Shocked is the word I would used to describe my first impression of Mac’s Blackwatch Cream Porter. The beer is surprisingly thin and not all that creamy. The coffee and chocolate that are so prevalent in the nose are nowhere to be found in the flavor. (The chocolate was apparently hiding in the aftertaste). There is no bitterness or dryness in the aftertaste, just smoothness all around. I didn’t find the cream that is in the name, unless that is referring to the beer’s ease of drinkability (or maybe Blackwatch is the cream ale version of a porter?).
Mac’c Blackwatch is like Guinness’s younger, weaker cousin or maybe the porter version of a Guinness beer. But don’t necessarily take that as a bad thing. This is a beer that can be used as a session beer or just something to fill that after dinner dessert beer slot, Mac’s Blackwatch Cream Porter is worth a try.
Overall: 6.5 out of 10
As a PORTER: 5.5 out of 10