Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine by selecting auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Midnight Sun - Williams Brothers Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Midnight SunMidnight Sun

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

71 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 71
Hads: 149
Avg: 3.91
pDev: 15.35%
Wants: 13
Gots: 17 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Williams Brothers Brewing Company visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
English Porter |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: wl0307 on 06-11-2008

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (43) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Midnight Sun Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 71 | Hads: 149
Photo of sprucetip
3.53/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Black but thin enough to let light through and add highlights. Good activity, root beer colored head that dawdles briefly and falls.

Mellow roast and some light malty sweetness. Not bad, but not much in the way of depth or complexity.

Pretty much like the nose, some modest roast and faint malty sweetness with little depth or complexity. Again, not bad, but not all that interesting either.

Fairly strong carbonation, thinnish/medium body, and very light bitterness on the end.

This a well made, decent tasting but largely unremarkable beer with little depth or complexity.

 580 characters

Photo of joecast
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours quite viscous and about as dark as any porter can be. Thin lightly tanned head. Looks like a text book dessert beer. Lucky I finished all my dinner.

Very appealing aroma. The malt sweetness and spices are at the forefront. Together they make a very good combination. Spices are sort of nutmeg/cinnamon with a touch of grainy breadiness and some floral hops to round things off.

Taste does well to pull back the spices and let the beer do the talking. Just feel if the balance of the smell was copied in the flavor it would have distracted too much. As it is, the spice compliments the dark chocolate and light roast of the malt very well. Bitterness is low but the beer remains balanced as its fermented quite clean.

Only criticism, and it's a small one, is the mouthfeel could be just a tad heavier to help add some weight to the malt and spice flavors.

Overall this is a very enjoyable beer. One nice side effect of the thinner body is that it goes down so easily. One question I am left with is would this be as good a beer without the spice. Of course, I don't know. But as it is it's pretty damn nice.

 1,117 characters

Photo of BierBliss
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Aroma: coffee, slight spice of some sort

Appearance: pours black, 1/2 inch head that fades, light lacing

Flavor: coffee, some maltiness and spice

Mouthfeel: nice mouthfeel

Overall: not what I expected, sort of like a winter warmer meets porter. Drinkable but not something I would go out of my way for.

 306 characters

Photo of MoreThanWine
3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a quarter inch mocha head with average fade. The body is a dark burnt umber brown color, almost coffee. The smell is very mild for a porter, even warm, but there's some roasted malt and cocoa. The taste mirrors and exceeds the smell. It has a nice oatmeal stout texture, smooth, creamy, almost milky. A good porter.

 322 characters

Photo of gskitt
4.6/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed at Rattle and Hum in NYC. Served at room temp, pours a deep brown, not quite opaque. Cask pour had no head to speak of. Had a slight smoky scent, peat maybe. Not overpowering in any way. Taste was remarkable, slightly sweetened plums or other dark fruits, smoky peat, whiskey attributes. Smooth, easy to drink, had no carbonation to speak of. A really nice offering.

 374 characters

Photo of maxk
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Purchased in a 500mL bottle from Great Grog in Edinburgh. Poured into a pint glass, well chilled.

A: Pours a very dark brown, minimal light getting through, with a latte-esque colored head. Very nice lacings.

S: Coffee, brown sugar, toffee, a tiny bit of alcohol in the nose too. There is some, slightly spicy scent which I can't quite put my finger on in there too.

T: A very nice roasted malt flavor is the first taste I get, followed by a prominent taste of coffee. There is a hint of chocolate in the aftertaste, as well as a tiny bit of the spiciness I smelled.

M: This beer has a great mouthfeel. It has a great viscosity to it, not too watery, but not syrupy, somewhere nicely in between. Good carbonation too.

Overall, I like this beer, it's a tasty, solid porter which is more interesting than many other UK porters. It's good, but not great.

 857 characters

Photo of flyingpig
3.55/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark brown, caramel brown head that goes fast to leave thin soapy lace.

S - Dark roasted malts, some coffee, some toffee, roasted barely. Dark chocolate and a touch of spice at end.

T - Strong coffee taste, some rich, dark malts & a sweet toffee flavour. Hints of spice & creamy bitter finish with some ginger.

M - Medium, strong carbonation, rich & creamy smoothness, slight tang & very dry finish.

O - Quite a nice, refreshing beer that went down pretty well and had a good creamy feel to it. The root ginger worked well but the dryness in the finish was a little much for me.

1001 Beers To Try List:

 657 characters

Photo of Zraly
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On cask at the Park Lane Pub in Hampton, Virginia.

Opaque and dark as night, this ale has a slight peat and smoke note up front. Very little head and minimal lacing.

The flavor profile is quite lovely. There is an interesting yeast note upfront and then the malt and roasted grains come out in the backside of the initial tasting. Some hints of chocolate. Silky mouthfeel with a mild spiceness -- likely due to the addition of ginger. Light to medium bodied and extremely easy drinking, especially on cask -- no over carbonation and the temperature really lets the roasted grains and spice notes shine.

Very nice porter that is great for eating some psuedo-English pub fare. I had more than one!

 700 characters

Photo of charlatan
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Looks good: very dark and opaque with a little head around the rim. The nose is an earthy liquorice or maybe fennel seeds to me, suggesting this will be a sipper and maybe on the sweet side.

The taste is a liquorice, chocolate oatmeal combination with a sweet carbonated start giving way to subtle herbal hoppiness and then a metallic liquorice finish.

This is actually quite complex and definitely a sipper as the nose suggested. My limited experience suggests this is fairly idiosyncratic so well worth a try.

Then I read the label...ginger. That's it. Ginger not liquorice. A sort of Christmas Ale version of a porter.

 624 characters

Photo of jjboesen
3.76/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a sweet Scottish porter brewed with oak and barley; it pours a dark body that, when settled, is caped by a crown of vanilla froth. The glass is ringed with a moderate amount of lacing.

There is a mild nose somewhat reminiscent of apple and bread; the palate detects the requisite bits of cocoa powder along with a strange, but intriguing, combination of malt and marshmellow.

This is a very non-agressive beer that offers a fine balance along with some crispness. All in all a fne quaff from a small Scottish brewer. Check it out if you come across it, because "if it's not Scottish, it's crap!"

 606 characters

Photo of zeff80
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at 44 Stone Public House, Columbia, MO

A - Poured out an opaque, jet black color with a two-finger, light brown head of bubbly foam. It left sudsy trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled roasty and floral with some nice toffee notes.

T - Lots of toffee, chocolate and caramel. Just enough bitterness to balance all the sweet flavors.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied porter with a dry finish.

O - This is a really tasty English Porter. Glad I tried this at 44 Stone Public House.

 514 characters

Photo of brewcrew76
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Deep brown, black with a big creamy tan head and streaks of lace.

S - Coffee, roasted malts, dark fruits and a light hint of ginger.

T - Coffee, cocoa powder, roasted malts, dark fruits and ginger that lingers long into the finish. The ginger builds as it warms.

M - Light side of medium with low carbonation. A little creamy.

D - Solid porter with a nice twist of ginger.

 380 characters

Photo of jlindros
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a smaller fizzy fluffy head that fades semi slowly with a touch of lacing over dark black beer with no light.

Nose has a nice creamy porter, light roast, some milk chocolate, light cocoa, touch of oats, some vanilla and light caramel.

Taste is more porter light milk stout, pretty creamy, lactose sugar I think, milk chocolate, light cocoa, light roast, some vanilla and caramel, oats, some malty flavors, and light bitterness more from a bit from the roasted malts and hints of earthy hops. The mild sweetness dries just a touch and the creamyness lingers as it finishes, with a bit more bitterness, malts, chocolate, and more lactose.

Mouth is med to slightly lighter bodied, creamy and milky, with lower but decent for the beer carbonation.

Overall not bad, very creamy and lactose, nice malt flavors, not too bitter, nice chocolate and vanilla flavors, but could have had a bit more carbonation and bigger body, and maybe a hint more hops.

 953 characters

Photo of ADZA
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The brew pours a dark cola hue with decent carbonation that leaves behind a creamy fast vanishing two finger head and a rim of lacing,the smell is nice and roasty with hints of chocolate,tobacco,coffee,liquorice and spicy hops,the taste is very similar with hints of chocolate,coffee,roasted toasted oats,liquorice and finishes with a spicy hop bitterness and overall a very pleasant porter and very drinkable cheers.

 417 characters

Photo of metter98
3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is very dark amber (near black) in color; traces of amber are visible near the edges of the glass when it is held up to the light. It poured with a thin tan head that died down but never completely faded away.
S: There are moderately strong aromas of roasted malts and toffee in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and has flavors of chocolate and roasted malts along with some hints of coffee beans and nuts.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied, a bit watery and very smooth on the palate with a moderate to high amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is easy to drink but I’m not sure if I could have more than one of these in a single sitting.

 672 characters

Photo of Errto
4.02/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle purchased at Best Yet Market, Harlem, New York, NY.

Pours a deep black with barely a hint of color. Light tan head, quite bubbly, not much retention.

Smells of chocolate, a bit of some kind of spice (nutmeg maybe?). No sweetness, alcohol or hops to speak of in the nose.

The taste matches the smell, although a malt body is more present here. Again, that spice I can't quite place comes through and is a pleasant change from most of the Porters I'm used to. Mouthfeel is surprisingly light.

Overall, this is a fairly modest and unassuming beer, but it has just enough richness in the flavor to keep it interesting. At 5.6% and a bit on the dark/roasty side, it's surprisingly refreshing as well.

 706 characters

Photo of oberon
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial nonic a near jet black except for a few ruby highlights when held to the light,a 1/2 finger beige colored head that held well.Carred aromas with some black licorice really standing out as well,a bit of dark fruit and bitter chocolate as well.Heavy roast and charred dark fruit flavors,I was surprised at the dryness and the roast it was alot like an American style porter in my mind.A little sharp and thin in the feel but its a nice roasty porter,one I would buy again.

 494 characters

Photo of Jeffo
3.05/5  rDev -22%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Got this one at De Bierkoning in Amsterdam.

From a 500ml bottle into a pint glass.

APPEARANCE: Pours dark brown and yields a 1+ finger, medium-thick looking, fluffy, light beige head with good retention. Dark brown in color, clear, with no carbonation evident. Head slowly fades to a good foam cap. A splotchy wisp and ring remain but leave no real lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Dark and roasted malts with some cocoa powder and chocolate aromas. Hints of oats are there and a slight earthy hop note and some spices. Muted, unfortunately, but nice.

TASTE: Dark and roasted malts and some toffee and cocoa notes as well. Oats and hints of leather and earthy hops. Mild and short lived aftertaste with some cocoa, earthy hop notes and some slight bitterness.

PALATE: Medium body and medium carbonation. Relatively creamy on the palate, goes down smooth and finishes crisp and slightly dry on the palate. Pretty good for the style.

OVERALL: A decent beer for sure, but I would choose Fuller's, or even St. Peter's before this one. Glad I was able to give this one a go, but I don't think I'll go back.

 1,108 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-cask 1/26/2011 at Doherty's East Ave Irish Pub in Pawtucket, RI, served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a large dense beige head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains coffee, roasted malts, some fruit and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out creamy with flavors of coffee and a little bit of chocolate and fruit. There's also a touch of spices in the background. The roasted malt character is hearty and the hops presence is mild but complementary creating a decent balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and a little crisp, medium body, light-to-medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, slightly filling, mild kick, good representation of style, this is a decent beer to drink for a while especially if you like casked porters.

 870 characters

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #45 (Oct 2010):

A Porter with a twist. Dense and rich-colored froth adorns the top of the dark-brown-leather-colored ale. Smells of muddled raisins, brown sugar and vague spicing from the hops and alcohol. Medium body. Dry toasted malt with hints of brown bread, touch of molasses and an even more faint charcoal and crystallized ginger flavor. Woody hops, kiss of ginger, nutty oats and a drying cocoa powder all in the dry finish. The small addition of ginger root works extremely well here. A versatile beer: sessionable, or an easy beer to pair with.

 596 characters

Photo of Minkybut
3.07/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I poured this drink into my tumbler at 45 degrees. The beer was very dark for sure. Black more like it with a chocolate colored head. The smell of the beer was very chocolate also and I had high hopes for the beer. However the beer tasted like a flat coke or Pepsi. I don't mean just flat I mean it tasted like Coke a Cola. I will not buy again.

 345 characters

Photo of bluejacket74
4.23/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle, best before July 2011. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours dark brown/black with an inch and a half frothy tan head. Head retention and lacing are both pretty good. Aroma is roasted malt, chocolate, oats and a bit of coffee. The aroma is nice overall, and mostly sweet. The brew tastes like roasted malt, chocolate, coffee, and some ginger, along with a slight mineral taste. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit coating and has moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good, it's smooth and goes down easy. I think this is a good porter, there was just something about the taste of this brew that I liked a lot. I'd buy this again in the future.

 667 characters

Photo of jdhilt
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a three finger, light tan head that fades very slowly leaving a good lace. Black color, no highlights. Nose is baked chocolate. Medium carbonation and medium-heavy bodied. Flavor is baked chocolate, some malty sweetness. Nice porter. $4.00 for a 500ml bottle from Tully's Beer & Wine Wells, ME.

 300 characters

Photo of biglite351
3.48/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - a bit of orange around the edges, tall creamy off white head.

S - very nice, roasted malts, oats and sweetness.

T - Less malts than the scent. More the barley, oats and some bitterness from the hops.

M - solid coating, mild tingle on tongue.

D - I would not shy away from this. Solid for both drink only or with food.

 325 characters

Photo of Manoftyr
2.49/5  rDev -36.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Appearance-Pours damn near black into the glass with a sizable two or three finger tanned off-white head, very nice retention, tight and rocky and leaving plenty of dabs of lace.

Aroma-Kinda weak unfortunately, I don't get much other than the typical porter characteristics such as darkly roasted malt. Bottles says the beer is 'balanced by a generous handful of hops' but I sure can't smell any.

Taste-Dry, burnt, straight forward and pretty bland actually; I've had better porters.

Mouthfeel-Unacceptably thin, very, very, thin.

Drinkability-This is on its way to being a drainpour so I can't give it much; I didn't like this beer.

 637 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Midnight Sun from Williams Brothers Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 71 ratings.