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Samuel Smith's The Famous Taddy Porter - Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

Not Rated.
Samuel Smith's The Famous Taddy PorterSamuel Smith's The Famous Taddy Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,478 Ratings

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Ratings: 2,478
Reviews: 1,228
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 11.24%
Wants: 143
Gots: 149 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster) visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Porter |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-28-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,478 | Reviews: 1,228 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of nickss
3.9/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep mahogany brown color with a medium-sized beige colored head.

Smells of caramel, with strong overtones of alcohol... for some reason I am always able to pick out a Sammy Smith just by the odor... there's something distinct about it. The scent is also refreshing.... minty almost.

Strong caramel, chocolate and alcohol flavors in this one... almost cognac-esque when it hits the tongue.... very nice.

Feels thick in the mouth, not to the point of being chewy, but still thick enough to offer a certain substance that I feel all porters should possess.

The alcohol flavors are a bit too strong for me to have too many of these. Nevertheless, I find the beer to be very enjoyable... just in moderation.

nickss, Sep 25, 2005
Photo of kkipple
3.05/5  rDev -27%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 550ml bottle into a tall glass. Color was a deep, burnt caramel brown with a half inch foamy head. Nearly opaque. Very pretty.

Smelled of malt and hops, with maybe a touch of grape scent. I must admit I have trouble picking out diverse smells, but the overall aroma was good.

Taste: sweet at first, reminded me of sugared coffee, malt, and molasses. Moist and slightly bitter, but with an unpleasant sour aftertaste. Consistency was thin. Quite filling, much like a stout.

This is the first English porter I've tried, and I can't say I was terribly impressed. The bottle may have been off a bit, as there was a decidedly sour aftertaste that may not be typical. All in all not a terrible beer; I wouldn't decline it if free, but can find better brews for $3. I would like to try it on tap to see if the sour flavor remains or if I simply had bad luck.

kkipple, Sep 13, 2005
Photo of fretlessman71
2.93/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pertinent Preliminary Comments: Samuel Smith beers always make me cringe when I see the clear bottles on the shelf – they seem like they’d do such a good job at brewing, but I have had more than my fair share of skunked SS brews in the past. Still, Taddy gets very good reviews; let’s see if the darker brew is less susceptible to the light and other elements.

APPEARANCE: (This is the first review where I could rate the appearance without popping the cap, but I’ll resist…) Black, with only the faintest hint of mahogany coming through. SERIOUS head action with really good staying power. Almost no lacing.

AROMA: Gentle mix of black and chocolate malt, with a generous dash of bottlecap. Seems like there’s a little oxidation here; whether it’s due to the light, age, or handling will remain a mystery. Certainly not much of the telltale “skunk” scent, but then the hops are very low in the first place. Getting a touch of diacetyl as well.

FLAVOR: The aspect of SS beers that seems to be their common bond is the yeast, and its effects are noticeable here – somehow, even though it’s been years, my taste buds are quietly saying, “Oh, yeah – I remember this”. It’s sort of a gentle metallic flavor that helps to impart a very dry finish. Roasted malt flavor is sorta weak, actually, but very smooth. And, in the words of Austin Powers, it’s “a bit nutty.”

MOUTHFEEL: Average weight, high carbonation, move along folks, nothing to see here.

DRINKABILITY: At 5% ABV it’s pretty close to session status, but I think I’d prefer other porters to drink more than one of.

OVERALL COMMENTS: Boy, I hope I get the chance to taste this fresh one day – I think I’d have a much higher opinion of it. As it is, I’m disappointed.

fretlessman71, Sep 03, 2005
Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a rich dark brown with only about a fourth inch head of loose bubbles after an aggressive pour. The head didn't retain all that well, and ended up being a ring around the top of the glass within a minute or so. I would certainly have liked to have had a more aggressive head.

Aroma: Lots of nutty malts and some chocolate are the first thing you notice in the aroma. It has a "dry" earthy aroma that you don't get with too many beers that I frequently notice with the SamSmith's stuff...perhaps it has to do with the stone fermenters.

Taste: The nutty malts rule the flavor also. I still get the chocolate in the flavor, so the flavor tracks the aroma pretty closely. There is also a noticeable caramel presence here also that I didn't really notice in the aroma. The beer is balanced toward the malt the entire time. It starts out pretty sweet, and then fades to a slightly bittersweet finish. I can tell that there are some hops in here, but I think that the roast contributes as much to the bitterness as they do. The mouthfeel is practically nonexistent, and leaves you with a heavier impression than this beer does normally.

Opinion: I really like this beer, and it stands out among the rest. There is a much smoother and richer flavor here as compared to just about any other Porter. The British malts do a lot for this style, and the processes at Sam Smiths make this a really smooth and almost creamy tasting beer. I would definitely recommend it.

SkeeterHawk, Aug 25, 2005
Photo of wedge
3.93/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice dark, dark brown with a large thick, creamy, tan head that slowly recedes to a sticky topping and lacing. Smell is of bitter chocolate, caramel - sticky, bready - hints of mocha and sweet dough. Taste is creamy, rich, and smooth - roasted malts are present. Mouthfeel is thin yet far from watery.

A nice porter. No suprises but a solid porter for sure.

wedge, Aug 24, 2005
Photo of BeerBeing
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: bottle, 12 fl.oz, clear, custom, "Samuel Smith" pressed twice around neck, "bottled at yorkshire`s oldest brewery est. 1758" pressed around bottom, gold foiled neck, black and red on yellow label, no fresness date.

Appearance: "very" black, no light can get thru, large head of long lasting cream-colored foam.

Smell: some coffee, hint of chocolate

Taste: medium body, creamy medium mouthfeel. Molasses, coffee, minor fruity flavor (?)

Notes: Sole US distributor - Merchant du Vin

BeerBeing, Aug 22, 2005
Photo of tastybeer
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black/deep garnet with tan creamy, thick head. The head looked almost like a toasted english muffin. Smells complex with real dark chocolate and columbian coffee, with hints of cream. The beer has layers of taste. Creamy instead of sweet, thick with roasty malts, bitter dark chocolate, with some coffee. Nice and smooth with many levels of flavor. Good carbonation. At the finish there is some prune and similar fruit tastes.

Overall a very solid porter. Really good and I want some more.

tastybeer, Aug 19, 2005
Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a single at Riley's here in Madison. I love me an American Porter, let's see how they match up across the pond.

Pours a dark garnet red, almost opaque but light can pass through. Nice tan head that disappears after a few minutes leaving nary a coating. Smell is subdued, malty, a little fruity maybe. Taste is also less robust than I would have imagined - malty up front, not so much in the roasted coffee or dark chocolate I would expect from a "porter", more on the milky sweet side, and finishing with apple skins and cider. Not much of a hop presence, but enough to balance and prevent it from being too sweet. Mouthfeel is smooth and crisp, if not a little on the thin side, but drinkability is way up there - definitely session material. Didn't blow me away, but an interesting take on the porter style, and solid all around.

Golden2wenty1, Aug 03, 2005
Photo of Opethsprite
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark, dark black with a coca-cola-esque head. Smells distinctly of chocolate and brown sugar, but there is also a hint of mint and apricot. EXTREMELY sweet to taste, at first a bland chocolate flavor and hops, but then the taste of a strong, creamy chocolate erupts onto the palate. It is quite thick (in a good way) and damn drinkable, but only in small quantities, as this really fills you up.

Opethsprite, Jul 27, 2005
Photo of andjusticeforale
3.65/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I tried this beer for the second time and the purpose of review last night, quite a big bottle of it really. I poured it into an English pint glass and had to admire the visual effect of the beer. It was medium chilled. It was black with a hint of ruby color, and a much lighter head that was about 1/8 of an inch.

I smelled and smelled and smelled but I didn’t really enjoy the nose too much, even after repeated sips. My first impression was that this was full bodied but slick and watery. There was a bitter-sweet roasted quality that lingered until the slightly bitter finish.It can be likened to drinking a big watered down double espresso with sugar but only a touch of cream. You can’t help but think, “this is going to be a huge beer because it is so black, so opaque.” But sadly, its not that big or complex.

There is a redeeming quality to this beer, in my eyes though, and it lies in the drinkability. As you progress through a pint, the beer becomes more drinkable, and the sweetness and bitterness balance, much like a perfectly made cup of coffee. I would recommend this on a late fall night, to anyone who remotely likes English ale or hanging out in a pub- but if you do- this is probably already one of your favorites.

andjusticeforale, Jul 27, 2005
Photo of thechaacster
4.53/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep, dark mahogany brown, about as dark brown as you can get before becoming black. You won't know the bottle's clear until you pour it. Remarkable foamy tan head that lasts a good long while. This beer looks so good I almost feel bad for drinking it. Great roasty aroma of coffee and dark chocolate. The flavor has all that, with the roasted malt being full but not burnt or astringent. Finishes with a quick sweetness followed by a lasting black coffee bitterness. Really wonderful drinking, and worth the price. This is one beer that fully lives up to its hype and history.

thechaacster, Jul 27, 2005
Photo of mmmbeer
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. with no freshness date - served slightly chilled. Pours a deep dark brown with ruby highlights and a very thin fizzy tan head that doesn't leave much lacing. Sour apples, dark fruits, chocolate and roasted malts are in the nose. Very pleasant. It is fairly bitter on the palate from both the hops and roasted malts, and there are notes of apples, raisins, coffee, chocolate, anise, dark fruits, green hops and a malty sweetness. The body is very smooth with medium carbonation and it coats the mouth well. Another good one from Sammy Smith's.

mmmbeer, Jul 22, 2005
Photo of blitheringidiot
4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Meeting the Peepers: What took me so long to enjoy a Sammy S. is beyond me. SS Porter pours out a thick rich dark brown nearly black pour topped off with an impressive dark khaki thick head cap that sticks well to the glass leaving some lattice lace.

In the Schozzola: Dep roasted malt scents of cocoa, molasses and brown sugar. There is even some dark fruity fig scents.

On the lapper: Thick cocoa and toasted maltiness, even pace with the nose, of molasses and some dark cake. Interesting mingle of complexity. Lingering aftertaste of caramelized sugars. A dryness is imparted in the middle, almost like a dry red wine. Malts are all over the place with a pecan and walnut nuttiness.

Hands on: Quite full bodied, almost as full as full bodied gets...almost. A bit cloying, but that comes with the territory.

Hangover helper memories: This is a world class porter that shunts the path of being a stout. This is a good argument settler as far as the difference between stout and porter. Taddy dark without being burnt. Also, 5% creates this to be quite a year round sipper. A truly historical beer

Beer is good. Happy world beering.

blitheringidiot, Jul 20, 2005
Photo of Wonka
4.28/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

550 ml
ALC. 5.0% VOL.
No dates

I love the classic presentation.

Appearance – one heck of a great looking porter; really dark on the inside with a dark purple edge; smooth, 3-finger light brown head at pour; lace is respectable

Smell – plum, sugary raisin, a more bitter chocolate than in the taste; light molasses; doesn’t explode but it certainly makes the mouth water

Taste – bit roasty; dark chocolate; light plum; light notes of dark chocolate and hops pair for a slightly acidic/tinny close and aftertaste; the lingering acidity pulls down the overall experience

Mouthfeel – pleasant, moderate and lush but not overwhelming carbonation; slight/moderate crispy twang for most of the ride; bit dry to close; overall the feel is great for a porter, but at times the crispness midway and late acidity bring it down

Drinkability – it’s the faults of the beer that urge drinking; the aftertaste issues are erased with less time to ponder deficiencies; if I was afforded a less tainted break, I’d slam down a 5

I have had some relative bombs from Samuel Smith, but this is one afforded the label a parachute.

Wonka, Jul 20, 2005
Photo of Naes
3.58/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Visuals are black in color with a huge light tan head that does not die down all that easily. Needless to say, it laces quite beautifully.

Aroma is malty and roasty.

Its flavor is roasty and has a peculiar taste that I can’t put my hands on. It is also well balanced by some hop bitterness. This is a unique porter.

The mouth feel is medium bodied and is carbonated well.

Easy drinking and worth a try.

Naes, Jul 17, 2005
Photo of Domingo
4.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

One of my favorite session beers...well...actually one of my favorite beers, period!
While it's not advertised as such - there's a very strong sweet chocolate flavor throughout. The smell isn't quite as pronounced. The aroma is more like caramel or toffee.

Goes down perfectly smooth. Just the right combination of "thickness" and going down easy.

I could drink this brew endlessly. It's nice that you can find it in both bombers and 4-packs.

Domingo, Jul 12, 2005
Photo of bobbyc881
3.75/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours out dark brown/deep red with a big, fluffy tan head. Head is creamy and sticky, trailing along the sides of the glass as it goes down. Nice looking beer in the pint glass. Smell is very pleasant: chocolates/nuts/coffee.

Big full taste that starts nice and malty then ends with this odd fruity bitterness - almost like raisins or plums. There's a slight hint of possibly dark chocolate left on my lips. Alcohol is barely noticeable. Light carbonation, and a sticky mouthfeel afterwards. The beer itself feels thin, like most other porters I've tried.

Overall a nice drink. Not my favorite style of beer, but this is currently my favorite of the category.

bobbyc881, Jul 08, 2005
Photo of DrJay
4.47/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Clear, dark chestnut, nearly opaque. Creamy, light tan head. Very chocolatey aroma, roasted coffee and toffee as well. Roasted malts are the dominant flavour, but there's a bit of hop presence along with some acidity. Dried fruit shows up at the midpoint and carries through to the end, where bitterness becomes more apparent as well. Creamy, smooth texture due in part to medium body and light carbonation. Also a bit buttery on the palate. Overall, a great porter. I didn't realize that this was the target I was shooting for in brewing my own porter all these years!

DrJay, Jul 07, 2005
Photo of pootz
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A deep chestnut color with ruby highlights. Puffy off white cap, laces the glass. Moderate carbonation. Light nose: sweet apple and cocoa mingle over light grass tones. Malty and smooth, mocha-like with pear or plum notes. Finishes wetwith a drying from the hop bittering....one fine porter...a true proter and probably one of the world’s best.

pootz, Jul 06, 2005
Photo of Noelito76
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Picked this up on a whim at the beer store in Manhattan. By far the best porter I've ever had.

The color was a deep and rich brown. There was a small head that hung around for a few seconds, perfect. The amount of carbonation was perfect as well. But the taste, clearly the best balance of hops and malt dominance. As a result mouthfeel is very good and it makes you want to savor every sip. I wanted more after my 2 pint+ bottles but the store is just too far away.

Noelito76, Jun 21, 2005
Photo of iwanturgrlfrnd
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Samuel Smith is without a doubt in my top 3 favorite breweries. I have yet to have anything from them that i did not like. On a trip to London in March '05, i was ecstatic to find it on tap at more than a few places and even more excited to try everything possible. only thing i didnt do that i might have liked to was take a tour of the brewery while i was in england. But i digress...

Poured from a 12 oz bottle with a gold foil top, the taddy porter looks great in a glass. Deep brown, like black coffee. A pillowy tan head swelling on top leaving some lacing on the glass. Malts come through as dark as you take in the wonderful smell, as does some toffee or caramel. that toffee/caramel smell come through at first in the taste, continuing with some earthy warmth, and ending with a bit of shortly lingering hops. Comfortable mouthfeel, easy to have more than one. And the easy drinkability of this beer will make you want to have another.

iwanturgrlfrnd, Jun 10, 2005
Photo of baiser
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a thick, opaque dark brown, with a creamy, fluffy tan head. Smooth, mellow and full of dark, roasty, coffee flavours. Delicious aroma of rich toffee, dark malt and sweetness. Some metallic flavour, but almost not noticeable. Some bitterness from the hops. Finishes dry. Excellent session beer.

baiser, Jun 07, 2005
Photo of NiceGuyMike
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The story behind Taddy Porter is one of my first discoveries of beer. In the mid nineties a friend of mine had a book of the 100 top beers in the world. At the time I was a fan of Bass and that was as exotic as I got. My friend had it in mind to purchase all 100 of those beers. This wasn’t unthinkable since a local liquor store had hundreds of individual bottles. One night I was hanging out and he invited me to a join him in his quest. We went out and purchased a bunch of them including Orval and Taddy Porter along with some other brews that I do not recall. Basically I wasn’t into most of them. I even disliked the Belgians. I just wasn’t into that flavor at the time (now is an opposite story). Anyway, once we got to the Taddy Port we both agreed it was the best.

Anyway on to the review, this beer pours very think and extremely dark. Holding it up to the sun yields little light penetration. A good tan colored head accompanied it with just a bit of lacing. This beer smells of malts, malts and more malts, dark caramel with cocoa (read Sugar Daddy). Malts continues strong with initial taste along with the caramel and cocoa. Basically it tastes like it smells which is nice. It finishes with some bitterness and mild alcohol trails. This is a medium bodied beer but finishes light.

Since I’ve rediscovered the world of beers I have to say this beer isn’t as good as I remember. I do remember describing it the same way back then, I just think there are so many better beers. But this beer will always have fond memories for me.

NiceGuyMike, Jun 05, 2005
Photo of sliv
4.58/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is the beer that helped me determine that my favorite style of beer is porter. I discovered the joy of Taddy when I was young and learning about beer, drinking far too many at a time, in Kenmore Square in the early 90’s. After all this time, I keep coming back to Samuel Smith’s, and this offering in particular.

It pours with an average sized head that subsides to light, sturdy foam quickly. The head clings to the glass very well. It is dark, dark brown color, with a touch of red when backlit. Although very dark, the beer has no cloudiness in evidence.

There is an initial intense sweet smell followed by a smoky malt odor. It seemed like strong caramels with hints of chocolate.

The first sip washed away my expectations of the heavy sweetness suggested by the aroma, leaving a medium smokiness with strong chocolate and malt flavors. There were hints of sweetness around the edges, making it not too bitter, which so many porters seem to forget. After the first few sips, the taste settled in to a medium coffee and chocolate flavor. The aftertaste is mild and malty, with a typical slight bitterness at the back of my tongue.

Mouth feel:
Taddy drinks very smooth, and not so creamy. It had a medium, firm texture, but was relatively light bodied, compared to some porters. It had a good amount of carbonation, but not overwhelmingly so.

I poured this beer with notebook at the ready to study what is one of my favorites. Understandably, I consider it to be very drinkable, but was almost surprised that my glass was nearly empty before I had finished making notes. So it was a given that I poured the second one. I would consider this a good beer to drink all night, not too heavy, with just enough body to slow you down to enjoy it.

sliv, May 29, 2005
Photo of cracgor
4.47/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark black with ruby edges. Tan, thick, creamy head. The head reduces but just never goes away and sticks to the glass.

Smell: Butter, Nuts, and Coffee. Very good contrast and balance. Sweet and woodsy are other descriptions.

Taste: Awesome Taste. Coffee is the main flavor, the nutty flavor accents this very well. Tastes smooth and...

Mouthfeel: ...feels velvety smooth with a medium to full body.

Drinkability: As good as I have had in this style. Low abv lends itself to session drinking in the winter. Coupled with great looks and flavor, I'll take it out any time of the year.

cracgor, May 25, 2005
Samuel Smith's The Famous Taddy Porter from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
93 out of 100 based on 2,478 ratings.