Jul 9, 2015

Heavy Seas Blackbeard’s Breakfast

I’ve been known to put a splash of bourbon in an evening coffee in my time. And let’s face it, I’m a sucker for a big porter. So it only makes sense that I would leave a recent beer run with a bottle of Heavy Seas Blackbeard’s Breakfast, a 10% ABV imperial porter brewed with Sumatran coffee beans and aged in bourbon barrels.

As you can imagine — and based on the direction this company has gone in recent years — this is not a small beer. It’s medium-to-full bodied with plenty of bourbon-y goodness and a ton of dark coffee flowing with each sip. Blackbeard’s Breakfast is an excellent beer, but maybe a little time in the bottle would make it that much better.


As expected, the beer pours an opaque charcoal black with just a thing rink of dark brown foam around the surface.

Heavy Seas Blackbeard's Breakfast photo


This… beer… smells… amazing! Soft bourbon mixes with smooth dark coffee, cocoa and bit of caramel. A soft roasty char nestles in from the background.


As great as this beer smells, the flavor doesn’t quite match up. A good bit of bourbon traits and wood arrive pretty darn smoothly along with dark coffee, chocolate and a moderate amount of malt sweetness. The beer is wonderfully easy flowing, but it’s not quite as rich as my brain imagined upon those first few sniffs. I like the subtle nuttiness and light char in the mix, but wish it were a bit fuller on the palate. Unlike some of the company’s recent offerings, Blackbeard’s Breakfast is softly warming, not packing a large alcohol punch.


I really enjoyed this beer, but a few quibbles keep me from making it one that I would hoard greedily. The beer comes across a bit thinner than I would personally prefer and, while the nose on the brew is incredible, the flavors don’t quite echo the potential. I have a feeling, though, that a year or so in the bottle would certainly help out with some of those issues, but I neglected to purchase that second (or third) bottle for testing. Maybe next time around.

Rating: 4/5

More: , , , , ,