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BridgePort Cafe Negro Coffee Infused Porter

Libations / Spokane /

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Coffee infused beer is a fickle friend. Often the flavors don't meld properly and you feel like you're drinking beer mixed with Folgers, which is not pleasant. I'm sure the brewing process plays a large part here, but I also suspect the coffee used is often of less than stellar quality.

Conspiracy theories aside, BridgePort's Cafe Negro isn't too bad but nothing to write poems about either.

It pours a dark brown color -- a bit lighter than I had expected actually -- with a nice thick tan head. The nose is both malty and coffee-like. Not too surprising, but there isn't a whole lot of depth to it either. My opinion might have been colored by the... color... but that lovely lovely scent you get from good coffee beer -- think Olde Bongwater -- is not quite there. This is a bit dull.

You can taste the coffee, but the flavor feels like it separated from the beer, almost like the coffee is sitting on top of it. I don't necessarily mind a bitter aftertaste, but what you get here is not quite what I had been hoping for. It's not Folgers, though possibly a bit more Starbucks.

Cafe Negro isn't an awful ale, don't get me wrong, it's just a bit disappointing. Kind of like BridgePort's Hop Czar. It is worth checking out if you're a coffee-beer kind of drinker, just don't expect it to blow your mind.