How many times have I seen Leinenkugel’s Snowdrift Vanilla Porter and passed it by? I’m sure I don’t know. Mostly, I’ve seen it in the 12-pack mixed sampler Leinenkugel sells as their Winter Explorer Pack. I was intrigued by the beer, but wanted to try it as a single (I just have too much beer on hand to buy another 12-pack you see). It’s also sold on its own in six-packs too, to be fair.
The 12-pack includes three bottles of Snowdrift Vanilla Porter, plus another 3 each of Winter’s Bite, Cranberry Ginger Shandy, and Helles Yeah. A light-bodied Helles seems a curious enough addition to a winter sampler, but the other beers are hearty enough one supposes. Anyway, I didn’t buy the sampler, but as fate would have it I got to try the Snowdrift Vanilla Porter anyway when it showed up on draft at Taco Mac.
One their website, Leinenkugel calls this “A fuller-bodied brew with hints of cocoa, coffee and caramel brought out by roasted malts and aged on real vanilla, our Leinenkugel's Snowdrift Vanilla Porter is smooth and creamy, making it ideal for winter.” They list the following ingredients as well:
Malts: Two-and six-row Pale Malt, Caramel 60, Carapils®, Special B™, Dark Chocolate and Roasted Barley
Hops: Cluster & Willamette
Other: Real vanilla
Leinenkugel’s Snowdrift Vanilla Porter has an alcohol content of 6% with 16 IBUs. You can’t argue with the price, I’ve seen the 12-packs selling at Target for $12.99 and I paid just $4.50 for a 20-ounce draft at Taco Mac.
My mug of Leinenkugels Snowdrift Vanilla Porter arrived a jet black color with a very thick foamy tan colored head and good chocolate and hint of vanilla in the nose. Taking a sip, I get a medium body but tasty roast and chocolate notes with a pleasant undertone of vanilla. There’s a hint of sweetness, roasty bitterness, and vanilla at the last as well. The beer is balanced at the last overall.
My main beef with this one is the body seems too thin, and that impression increases as it warms. I think with just a bit more body this could be something special, but even at that it is a tasty enough brew at a great price that I enjoyed and would certainly buy again.
And remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.
*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.