Rocky's Revenge is a dark brown ale that I could feel warming my throat as I drank it. Since the name Rocky's Revenge doesn't give a clue as to its variety, my senses - honed by research and 24 days of experience drinking new beers - told me this was a porter. It was dark, caramel-y, and warming like a porter. It actually tasted like a hard alcohol, which was not like any porter I had tasted to this point. A quick trip to the internet led me to a site that called it Bourbon Brown Ale. The fine print on the label said it's "an American brown ale with a portion aged in bourbon barrels." So that explains the liquor notes I tasted.
In Ultimate, MJ, (you remember "the King of Hop(s)"), classifies some porters, stouts and ales as "Sociable Beers" while others are classified as "Winter Warmers." He says of these ales "...often dark brown ales, usually malt-accented, sweet, and relatively full-bodied but only medium-to-strong in alcohol are typically regarded as winter warmers." (p.110) This beer has a 6.0% abv which is in the range of his highlighted "Old Ales" in his "Winter Warmers" chapter. But this beer is not seasonal. Tyranena makes only six beers year round and this and Chief BlackHawk Porter are among these year-round beers, with a scotch ale and an oatmeal stout among their six seasonal brews.
I like this beer. It is different in a subtle and good direction. I'm still giving it a 3, but I am looking forward to trying more from Tyranena.
Jim from Milwaukee