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Smuttynose Robust Porter - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Robust PorterSmuttynose Robust Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,093 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,093
Reviews: 1,006
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 10.39%
Wants: 137
Gots: 144 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
This hearty, mahogany colored ale is brewed to evoke the dark, full-bodied ales that were a favorite of dockworkers and warehousemen (hence the name “Porter”) in 19th century London. It is a good bet that when Dickens’ Mr. Pickwick sat down for a pint, we would have been drinking an ale much like our Robust Porter.This is a smooth and very drinkable beer, characterized by its well-balanced malt and hops, plus subtle notes of coffee and chocolate.

43 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-18-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,093 | Reviews: 1,006 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Janderson91
4.47/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received this as an extra in a trade with McNuts so big thanks to him! Bottle says best before October 2011. Enjoyed on 06/19/11.

A - Poured into a snifter. Pretty aggressive pour yields a large tan head that recedes quickly. This thing is just this side of black, a little dark red/brown can be seen around the edges when held to the light. Leaves a nice wall of lacing down the side. Can't think of anything that could make it better, perfect score here.

S - Very nice smoky, roasted malt aroma. Balanced by a chocolatey sweetness. Also present is a faint hoppiness and some light coffee. The smoky character is the star of the show and it works well.

T - Bitter roasted malts up front and a nice dark chocolate. Quite bitter through the middle with smoke and some hops present. Finishes with a good sweet milk chocolate taste and just a hint of smoke. This is an excellent porter.

M - Mouthfeel is pretty much right on. I might like it to be a tad more full toward the end.

O - This is definitely the best porter I've had and another good beer from Smuttynose. Good beer from a good brewery.

Janderson91, Jun 20, 2011
Photo of TheGordianKnot
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dated best by June, 2011 poured into Imperial Pint glass...

A- Pours almost black with a one finger caramel head. The head turns to a film fairly fast but leaves a tiny bit of lacing where it once was.

S- Roast is obviously the forefront here with some slight coffee aromas to follow. It even has just a tiny bit of currant or other dark fruit that is barely noticeable. As the beer warms the sweetness starts to pop and reminds me of dark molasses.

T/M- Fairly hoppy which leads to a PERFECT balance between the earthy hops and roasted malt. The roast has a bit of a burnt tinge to it to add a bit of depth. The roast really lingers on the middle of the tongue for awhile. Not a whole lot of sweetness, even as this warms, but overall flavor is very well done for one of roastier options on the porter spectrum. Medium-ish body and moderate carbonation make it full per style, but not heavy. Very enjoyable.

O- Overall this is towards the top of my porter list. Not as good as Edmund Fitz but still very solid. Even better is how widely available this is just like Edmund- I always have 2 top notch porters at my local grocery store (well, when in Ohio now). I always enjoy this beer, and though it isn't as smooth as some porters, it can really hold its own against some great stouts out there as well with the more pronounced roast, so its the best of both worlds depending on mood sometimes...

TheGordianKnot, Jun 16, 2011
Photo of Knapp85
3.63/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured out as a rich deep brown color, mostly black. The head was a light tan color. The smell of the beer had a very nice roasted aroma to it, and a touch of sweetness on the nose too. The taste had a burnt flavor to it, very enjoyable when mixed with the sweet malts. The mouthfeel os the beer isn't super heavy even though the color is dark. overall it's a pretty nice porter and worth a try.

Knapp85, Jun 12, 2011
Photo of Tschnab
4.4/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

One of my old reliables...

A- an ink like abyss, topped with a fluffy three inch tan crown, leaves notches of lace down the glass.

S- the smell is great; sweet and just a but hoppy, but mostly features a dark malt, bold and roast-like aroma.

T- waves of dark chocolate and coffee wash down the faint bit of grapefruit hoppiness residing in the background. The finish is bitter, probably from the dark malts, and leaves a bit of char. The mouthfeel is light to medium for a porter.

O- probably my favorite porter, just a really solid beer from a great brewery.

Tschnab, Jun 10, 2011
Photo of jgagne
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Black as night body with creamy light brown head. Great lookin beer. Exciting

S-Nice hints of smokiness and espresso.

T-Great balance of chocalate, espresso and spiciness. Really balanced and flavorful.

M-Heavy dark body with medium carbonation

O-Really well balanced beer. Easy to drink and well made. Would drink again anytime.

jgagne, Jun 08, 2011
Photo of Jeffo
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this one at De Molen in Bodegraven.

From a bottle into a snifter.

APPEARANCE: Pours out brown and makes a one finger, medium looking, tan head with decent retention. Black body with medium carbonation evident. Head fades to a light wisp and ring, clinging to the sides. A ring and splotchy wisp remain until the end leaving touches of lacing down the glass. Looks bigger than it should.

SMELL: Roasted malts, dark malts, and some good chocolate notes. Dark, pure chocolate. Touches of coffee as well, but mostly about the roasted and chocolaty aromas. Bold enough as well. Good.

TASTE: Great flavors for a porter. Roasted and smoky malts, dark malts for sure, and some nice pure chocolate. More robust for the style, as the name would suggest. A roasted and smoky finish on this one, with roasted malts and bitter, dark chocolate driving the bold and lingering aftertaste. Big flavors for the style, and tastes bigger than the ABV would suggest.

PALATE: Medium-full body and medium carbonation. Plenty of weight on the palate, creamy-smooth, goes down smooth and finishes slightly mouth-coating. Good stuff.

OVERALL: A great example of what a porter can be. This one came off way bigger than it is, and shows once again that you don’t need a big ABV to pack huge flavor into your beer. Definitely memorable for the style. Give it a chance if it’s available in your area. Recommended.

Jeffo, Jun 06, 2011
Photo of SpdKilz
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review # 391

I have had this for a while and finally cracked it open tonight before heading to bed. A big thanks to ncmussell for this extra. Cheers!

Appearance – Pours a dark black into my tulip. Just a hint of light barely shines through the edges of the glass when held up to a light. Over two fingers of great looking mocha head is achieved with an average pour that dissipates somewhat fast but leaves some fine looking lacing.

Smell – This smells amazing. As the name would apply, robust roasted malts, cocoa, dark chocolate, slight smokiness, and a hint of nuttiness. Often (oddly) when I have porters like this I smell and taste a metallic flavor. This is absent from the nose, let’s hope it is also in the taste!

Taste – Hot damn. I love the first sip. A bitter roasted malt flavor is the initial hit, which subsides to bitter cocoa, coffee, and even more roasted malts and burnt grain. I love me a good porter and this one delivers. The flavors are just great, no metallic “twang” to it (again, maybe I get bad porters often, or I’m a snob, but I really do seem to taste metallic flavors in porters more often than not). Finishes with slight off-sweetness but overall more bitter than not (good!).

Mouthfeel – Medium bodied, carbonation on par for the style, creamy, nice dry finish.

Overall – As stated, I’m always on the lookout for a good porter, and I am going to be trading for some of this in the near future so I can have plenty during the winter months. This was just a great beer and a fantastic surprise. Glad I was able to try it.

SpdKilz, Jun 06, 2011
Photo of mikereaser
3.7/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed blind as part of the Blind Beer BIF #5

#11 from johnbjaeger

A - Pours a pitch black with alot of brown foam that just kept rising in my glass and made me do the get ready to suck foam dance but stopped just short of making me inhale vigorously. As it receded, there was a glass full of lacing that looks like it will take a lifetime to wash away.

S - nice roasted malts with alot of coffee and mocha coming through. It reminds me of something but I just can't place it. I just keep going back and smelling it. Very nice roastiness to it.

T - A little weaker than i was hoping, but there is a nice iced coffee taste with some of that mocha all followed up with a nice roasted flavor. It all finishes with a nice bit of smokiness but nothing overpowering.

M - Medium bodied but a bit thin, it has good flavor and it doesn't hurt it much. Nice carbonation makes this very drinkable

D - It is easy to drink, I feel like I could drink a bunch of these and still be feeling good.
I'm not good at guessing, so here we go..

Smuttynose Robust Porter
I have to admit, the cap was uncovered, so I knew it was smuttynose, but I have never had this beer so nice choice. Very nice drinkable beer.


I have one left to log and it was already consumed. I just need to dig out my notes for a very nice beer. I love this BIF

mikereaser, Jun 03, 2011
Photo of WoodBrew
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From Notes of a Recent Beer Tasting Party.

The Robust Porter from Smuttynose was very good! The color was a real dark, very deep amber. The beer had a thin wite head. The aroma was bolstered by a roasty/coffee scents. The flavor was also very good...dominated by very good caramel, coffee/espresso, oily taste. A roastiness polishes the beer off the pallet then dissapates quite nice. Theis porter is very easy on the mouth could have multiple of these!

WoodBrew, May 29, 2011
Photo of shaunb81
3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - This poured black with some dark brown hues around the edge of the glass. There is a light cream colored head and some mild lacing around the top of glass. Nice looking beer.

Smell - Roasted malts, coffee, mocha, and dark fruits peer out.

Taste - This brew is super bitter and malty. There is a little sweet spring on the tip of the tongue.

Mouthfeel - A medium body and light creaminess give this beer a pleasant density.

Overall - Not bad stuff. I would give it another go. Some surprises throughout the glass which should have been much of a surprise in the first place. I mean, it is called "Robust Porter".

shaunb81, May 21, 2011
Photo of MufflnMan
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a 12oz bottle into a tulip. Pitch black with a gorgeous mocha brown head that sticks to the sides and stays there.

Smells of bitter chocolate and sweet malt.

Tastes of bittersweet chocolate, sweet malt, subtle hint of bitter coffee. More sweet than bitter overall.

Mouthfeel is a little on the thin side but nicely carbonated.

MufflnMan, May 20, 2011
Photo of BuxMontBeerLover
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased a Smuttynose Variety pack. This was the Brewer's Choice selection in the pack.

Variety pack: $16.99/12

Enjoyed in a DFH Signature Glass

A - Pours a deep brown, almost black, totally opaque color. A nice foamy one finger head on the initial pour fades to a thin white coating during the tasting. A fair amount of sticky lacing on the side of the glass.

S - A really strong coffee and burnt malt aroma. Very inviting.

T - A really good beer whose flavor is dominated by chocolate, coffee and roasted malts. A very easy beer to drink. Not heavy at all. A slight bitterness does come into play by the time you finish the glass. The low ABV makes this perfect for sessioning.

M - Medium carbonation. The beer has a nice creamy-like mouthfeel.

O - I liked this beer. Reminded me of a stout in certain aspects. I enjoyed the mix of various flavors. I look forward to sampling the other beers in the Smuttynose Variety pack.


BuxMontBeerLover, May 19, 2011
Photo of DirtybeerguyRI
4.47/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

APPEARANCE: Nearly as dark as a stout with a sticky, milk-chocolate head. Lots of lacing.

SMELL: Dark, roasty malts with a hint of fruity sweetness. I also pick up an undercurrent of coffee.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium-bodied with a fair amount of carbonation-driven bite on the tongue and cheeks. Mind you, this porter is not really bitter, it's just very crisp.

TASTE: Up front, the dark malts produce a sharp, almost woody taste nicely balanced with notes of caramel and bitter chocolate. The finish produces a nutty tang. Really fantastic stuff!

DRINKABILITY: If you like bite with your beer, then this is a fine session porter. The ABV isn't that high, so you'll be able to enjoy more than a few if you want to (and I'd want to).

VERDICT: This porter really lives up to its name! It's a very earthy, sharp, fairly-complex porter. That said, it's very accessible. I'd love to pair this beer with a nice, juicy steak.

John Harvey

DirtybeerguyRI, May 13, 2011
Photo of mjn5036
3.3/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A – 12oz bottle poured into tulip glass. The pour reveals a mahogany colored beer and produces a mocha colored head.

S – The nose consists of roasted malts, baker’s chocolate, coffee, and lingering sweet notes.

T – The taste seems to be overrun by the coffee notes. It is dry, bitter and roasted, much like drinking strong roast black coffee. Chocolate notes are there, again with a touch of sweetness at the start, but everything seems muddled by the coffee flavor.

M – SNRP has a lingering dryness that stays with your palate for quite some time. A mild amount of carbonation helps smooth out the drinkability. Seems a bit thin.

O - Coffee seems to dominate this brew. I find myself wishing there was less coffee going on in this one so that some of its more subtle features could shine.

mjn5036, May 12, 2011
Photo of zeledonia
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark brown, opaque, with a fluffy two-finger head that recedes pretty quickly but leaves fantastic lacing.

Smell is a great combination of sweet and roasty malts. I get a bunch of chocolate, plums. Has that unique sweetness shared by so many porters. Could probably do with a bit more sharpness in the nose.

Starts out rather sweet, but the roasted flavors come through quickly after that. Finish lasts a looong time, with a slow transition from roast to bitter, and a resurgence of the initial caramel sweetness. Nice complexity, but the parts don't quite match up.

Medium-bodied, medium-low carbonation. Lasts a long time in the mouth. Mouthfeel is good, but it clings to the mouth in an odd way.

This is a good porter, but it's rough around the edges. It has some good components, but they don't blend together as well as they could. It feels like a jagged surface, where my favorites are like a smooth path over rolling hills.

zeledonia, May 10, 2011
Photo of soze47
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I've been meaning to pick one of these up for a long time. I've had it in the past, but not since I started reviewing beers. Drinking a 12 oz. bottle out of a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Very very dark brown that almost looks as black as a stout. This looks like a porter that will lean towards the stout side of things as opposed to a brown ale. There is a very sticky, tan head on this beer that never fully disappears throughout the drinking session.

Aroma: I get a lot of roasted, malt forward tones without much hint of sweetness. Not a lot of single standout flavors. Almost an amalgam coffee, cocoa, burnt toast, and a hint of dark fruits come through. There is also a leafy hop quality that lends a nice balance. Complex smelling, but somewhat muddled.

Taste: Very much the same as the nose, but the flavors come in waves. There is a simultaneous first wave of hoppy bitterness and caramel sweetness. Then come the dark roasts. At first, it starts on the sweet side, almost nutty. Then an assault of pleasant bitterness comes in hot and heavy. The finish actually takes on more notes of caramel sweetness, then a nice dryness.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: Nice and creamy without being heavy. A light/medium body overall, which is good for this flavor profile. Any heavier and the acrid, almost burnt notes would be too much. I could drink several of these. Nice robust, evolving, and complex taste with a low ABV.

Overall: Really nice beer that I should buy more often. I've never been a huge Smuttynose fan, but this is a great beer. No question about it.

soze47, May 10, 2011
Photo of mater
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I can get many Smuttynose beers, but for some reason I can never find this. Finally found some and put it in my mixed six from Vintage Estate in Boardman, OH.

12oz bottle poured into a Stone imperial pint glass.

A-Pours VERY dark brown, almost black with a finger head and good lacing.

S-Lots and lots of Chocolate, with a hint of roasted malts and coffee. Not really anything else going on here.

T-Chocolate, with a hint of smoke at the end.

M-Smooth and creamy, went down nice.

Overall-I love porters and this one is pretty good.

mater, May 08, 2011
Photo of NODAK
3.95/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

It definitely is robust in the nose. Loads of dark chocolate and roasted malts dominate. One of the more chocolate forward porters.

The taste follows the nose pretty closely. Lots of bittersweet dark chocolate is present, and roasted malts. There's even some smokiness in there. Again, a pretty flavorful porter here, it doesn't hold back. If it were a little thicker, it could be called a stout without question. A small bitterness comes at the end from the roast...with a pretty heavy lingering aftertaste.

Pretty good porter here....one for people who don't want a porter to hold back and want chocolate notes, that's for sure.

NODAK, May 05, 2011
Photo of muletrane
3.93/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle (best by 7/11) into a pint glass.

A: Nice rich black colour, very little light comes through. 2 fingers of dense tan head, nice bubbles on top. Good retention with nice lacing.

S: The roastiness dominates the nose with some maltiness.

T: Roasty and nutty up front with nice coffee bitterness in the finish. Some hops in there as well.

M: Slick medium body with nice soft carbonation. Lingering bitterness as well.

Overall this is a very solid porter. Robust indeed! The IPA WAS my favorite Smuttynose beer until I tried this.

muletrane, May 04, 2011
Photo of ChadQuest
3.53/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I poured this into a DLD/Intellegensia snifter, cuz it's black. That's right i said it. actually i remember previous bottles being roasty so i figured it's appropiate.

Looks dark with brown shown mostly just around the edges, a dark tan ring around the edge forming a collar. nifty.
just like i remembered, has that nice roasted edge to it, like a proper porter should, and honestly for not having coffee added this bears a strong resemblance to a coffee profile, and actually has a better coffee profile then alot of coffee stouts, imagine that. lesser notes of powdered coco and artificial vanilla.

ChadQuest, May 03, 2011
Photo of ngeunit1
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark black-brown color with a finger of off white head atop. The head fades down to a ring around the glass leaving behind some really nice lacing.

S - Aroma is full of roasted caramel malts with coffee and chocolate mixed in. Touch f smokiness and milk also noticeable.

T - Starts off with a hit of roasted flavors with some malt and coffee flavors. There is some coffee and a touch of lactate in the background. Through the middle, some stronger roasted flavor comes in with some burnt malt and a hint of smoke. The finish is a mix of deep roasted malt and coffee with some bitter chocolate flavor mixed in that lingers really nicely.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels a bit creamy and really smooth. Really full roasted feel at the finish.

D - Very drinkable. Flavors are really nicely balanced and mix together. The roasted flavor is really nice throughout. Finish is full of flavor and really nice.

ngeunit1, Apr 29, 2011
Photo of Marty30
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle,with a best before date of July 2011.Poured at 50 degrees into my Founders snifter.

A. Black body, when I hould this up to the light only a small amount penetrates to show some dark amber hues.Nice two and a half finger head that leaves behind some decent lacing.Lots of carbination.

S. Roasted malts come first, followed my milk chocolate.I get a faint smokey smell coming in there also,some nuttyness in there as well.

T. Very much follows the smell,Roasted malts and chocolate getting some toffee.Alot of bitterness in the back of the tongue from good amount of hops.

M. Medium feel,kind of light on the tongue if that makes any sense,I wouldn't call it thin.Plenty of carbonation present.

Overall this is one of my staples ,I love this Porter one of the best I've had up there with Founders and Eddie fitz.I think this is a great beer that flies under the hype radar.A must try.

Marty30, Apr 28, 2011
Photo of Agold
4.4/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This porter is very dark with a small head which recedes to a thin film which remains. Not much lacing. The aroma is of dark chocolate and a bit of coffee. Really great bitter chocolate mocha coffee flavor. Good mouthfeel. Smooth, medium bodied, and very drinkable for such a robust (heh heh) beer.

Agold, Apr 27, 2011
Photo of schlimenhaumer
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a Guinness pint glass at low altitude.

A: Pours a very dark brown with a tan two-finger head -- nice retention and some good lacing as well.

S: Smells like barley with some more subtle coffee notes. Reminds me very much of the smell of Japanese roasted barley tea (mugicha).

T: Starts off surprisingly chocolaty, giving way to coffee notes and ending with a strong roasted barley flavor that lingers for quite a while. A much more balanced flavor than most porters I've tried before.

M: Very wet and creamy -- coats the mouth on its way down. I found the subtle level of carbonation just right for this beer.

D: Very smooth, pretty easy to come by and not overpowering in flavor -- really easy to drink.

schlimenhaumer, Apr 26, 2011
Photo of BelgiumBill
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It showed a black pour with a brown rim and gave a brown 1 inch head.

Nice complex nose of coca, coffee, sweat roasty malts, and a bit of licorice.

Flavor was smoky with a hop bitterness on the side of the tongue along with more roasted flavors of coffee and bittersweet cocoa.

Drinkable without a big hit of alcohol.

BelgiumBill, Apr 24, 2011
Smuttynose Robust Porter from Smuttynose Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 2,093 ratings.