I don’t know if I got a bad bottle (I suspect I may have), but it was definitely not what I was hoping for. It was drinkable—not like it was spoiled or badly infected or anything, just… off. My notes:
Appearance: Black-brown, red-hued mahogany. Chocolate milk head, about ¼ inch thick, dissipated quickly. Some of the larger bubbles had an iridescent, soapy look.
Smell: Dark chocolate (not overwhelmingly chocolate like everything had me believe), strong aroma of roast malt, black patent maybe.
Taste: Astringent and sour and dry. Not lactic sour, necessarily, but over-roasted (burnt) sour. Dark roasted malt at the back of the throat. Possibly coffee. No appreciable hops, no chocolate that I can detect at all.
Mouthfeel: Too thin for a porter. Has a soapy feel to it—oily almost.
And no, even though I mentioned "soapy" twice I don’t think there was soap in the bottle or anything like that. (If there was, I’m sure I’ll find out soon!) The oils in chocolate can do that, if they used real chocolate.
Perhaps I’ll try this beer again down the road, give it some time just in case it was a bad batch, or an old bottle that went bad or something.