Cavalry Big Wally Porter
Six pack, $?, 4.8% ABV
Purchased at I forget
If you are reading this and you have a Big Wally (or just had), that’s pretty weird. Cavalry Brewing closed in May 2014, so your beer is old.
Though, since it’s a porter and since the Big Wally was, by far, Cavalry’s best beer, it might actually be okay.
Over the years, people would sort of grumble about how disappointing Cavalry beers were. I would always step up and say something like, “Y’know, their porter was pretty good. No, seriously, it is.” People would look at me like I was crazy, but whatever… it was pretty good.
An excellent example of an English Porter with subtle coffee and chocolate aromas that come through in the flavor.
Big Wally Porter is named after our commander in Iraq during operation Enduring Freedom/OIF 1. He was and still is an excellent leader that was evenhanded but, at times loud (hence the name). Through his leadership and concern for the soldiers, we managed to leave Iraq with many close calls but, no losses.
If you didn’t know, every one of Cavalry’s beers has some sort of Iraq War veteran back story. This is one of the more milquetoast military stories though. I had a few conversations with Mike, the guy who ran the Cavalry show and he was an interesting and seemingly conflicted guy. He was certainly proud of his service to the country, but he was pretty forthright about his disdain for the Iraq War effort and reasoning.
I never really pressed the issue simply because I am not a veteran and figured this was a rather personal thing for him. For the record, I respect both his service and his opinions.
The Big Wally was a true-to-style English porter, using Engish hops and malts. Like most traditional English beers, it had a low ABV and was, perhaps, maltier than we’re used to over here. To some, that means “sweet” and watery. While that’s true of many English beers, this one was well-balanced.
I think this was one of Cavalry’s first beers, and I’m happy to say that they dialed it in pretty well. Um, not “happy,” because y’know, Cavalry doesn’t exist anymore and no one will ever drink a Big Wally Porter again.
Overall Rating: B+
Rating vs. Similar style: B+