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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.

2,030 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,030
Reviews: 1,001
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 10.63%
Wants: 136
Gots: 120 | 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: 2,030 | Reviews: 1,001 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brentk56
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours an obsidian color with a solid, tan head that leaves waves of lacing around the glass

Smell: Roasted aroma of charcoal, espresso and flaked chocolate

Taste: Starts out with a coffee and burnt charcoal flavor; fruity hops add character by mid-palate; after the swallow, a variety of mellow chocolate flavors appear to blend with the fruit

Mouthfeel: Creamy body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Flavorful and well-balanced; very nice

brentk56, Sep 24, 2006
Photo of DrJay
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, that's a dark beer. Black with no highlights to speak of. Dense, creamy head that's about half an inch off a vigourous pour and leaves thick lacing at each sip - too bad it didn't last longer. Malty aroma with a nice mix of roasted, caramel, and (lots of) chocolate character, but what sets it apart is the way the hops peek through and round things out. The taste is solid, but falls a little flat compared to the aroma. Nice and malty, with a hint of roast, mild chocolate, and a burnt bitterness that lingers on the palate. Hop flavour and bitterness are present, but restrained. Creamy carbonation, off-dry, with a round body. This is quite a good porter, definitely one that I recommend to porter lovers out there.

DrJay, Sep 23, 2006
Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow, this looks like a robust porter. Half an inch of light brown head, with a black completely opaque body. Smells roasty and malty with a hint of hop. Tastes roasty and malty, coffee-like with a hint of hop. This is an excellent porter. Medium to full in body and extremely tasty. One of the best porters I've ever had.

MrHurmateeowish, Sep 23, 2006
Photo of BlackJeremiah
3.83/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a English pint glass.

A: Thin, creamy head reduces, but refuses to disappear. Dark brown, with red undertones against the light.

S: Coffee/espresso with roasted almond or chestnut and dark toasted malt. Smells utterly appealing, almost comforting.

T: Dark toast, roasted nuts, Lucky Strike tobacco and black burnt coffee lead off very strong. I also taste faint hints of blackberries, but the burnt texture really carries the flavors, in a good way.

M: Very chewy at the outset, smoothing out and becoming very dry at the finish. Refreshing, in a dark, meaty sort of way.

D: This was easy to drink, but not my idea of a sessioner. More like something you'd bring out at a tasting; it would make a good palate-cleanser, since its distinct flavors don't linger.

BlackJeremiah, Sep 22, 2006
Photo of LucaBrasi
3.95/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Man I thought this was a good porter...I've been waiting for it for a while now finally got my hands on it.

Appearance is a deep dark midnight mocha chocolate brown which lets no light through. Very little to no head of tiny foamy brown bubbles.

Smell is heavy on the roasted chocolaty malts

Taste is heavy roasted wholesome goodness with a bittersweet surprise like roasted espresso beans covered in chocolate.

Mouthfeel is full and with a carbonation tingle.

This is one good porter!!

LucaBrasi, Sep 21, 2006
Photo of sacrelicio
4.7/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is great porter! One of my favorite styles, and it is nice to trya new one.

This porter pours an opaque black with brown highlights that are only visible when the beer is held up to direct light. A great sign. No light comin' through this sucker. The head is finger thick and decent but nothing spectacular. Almost no lacing.

The smell is of coffee, maple, chocolate and black olive. Nice surprise with the black olive. A little brown spice like cinnamon and nutmeg. Very well knit overall.

Taste is of smooth coffee-with-one-cream-and-one-sugar on the primary with secondary notes of chocolate, hazelnut, walnut and spice. A slight hoppy greenness sneaks through just before the lingering bitter, nutty finish. Not overly complex, but smooth as silk and delicious with impeccable balance. Almost resembles a milk stout. Excellent.

Mouthfeel is full and velvety, just like a good porter should be. Carbonation is soft but supporting.

Drinkable as all hell. I would love to drink another, but it's getting late.

Overall? Fantastic.

sacrelicio, Aug 30, 2006
Photo of mjc410
1.95/5  rDev -52.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

The pour raises a one finger dark tan head, with quick sudsy lacing slowly falling into an opaque black body. The nose is immensely roasty, and filled with coffee, chocolate, and a bit of sweet caramel. Now, with these two areas rated, I'm definitely not prepared for the horror of the rest of the beer. Taste is like a sugared espresso, with a licorice note. Very bitter throughout, mildly acidic dry finish. The bitterness builds to extreme levels, and the licorice flavor becomes unbearable over time. The mouthfeel is far too thin for the intense flavors, I feel. This was a horrible beer, perhaps a bad bottle, but certainly a drain pour.

mjc410, Aug 28, 2006
Photo of mjarosz
3.8/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured dark, dark black. I thought Guinness was dark...this is pitch black. Smells very rich with sweet roasted coffee tones. Taste is very powerful, almost too strong with a bitter aftertaste. Very rich flavor. Mouthfeel and drinkability are excellent. Excellent porter overall.

mjarosz, Aug 28, 2006
Photo of loren01
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a dark black color, good sized tan head, good head retention
S: Smell is earthy, slightly smokey
T: Espresso beans, dark chocolate. Also has the smokey flavor present in the smell
M: Creamy heavy bodied mouthfeel
D: Very tasty porter, thanks to snilsen for this one. Would be a good late fall/winter beer.

loren01, Aug 27, 2006
Photo of snilsen13
4.65/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I really enjoy this beer. It's going to be a new regular in the fridge. Thanks to loren01 for encouraging me to revisit Smuttynose. I should say, I don't drink many Porters, but this is clearly a great beer.

A - typical dark brown, fully translucent. Brownish froth, fairly thick but does disappear eventually without lacing.

S - see taste, nice connection - points!

T - First I taste the sweetness of the malts, then the espresso flavors drive in strongly (tasting a little mocha-ish) and finally some mild hops bring it all home for a reasonably celan finish. Not as crisp as some, but had to imagine such a sweet beer with such a nice finish. Beautiful. Aftertaste is the bitter espresso that lingers pleasently.

M - sticky then clean. Full without any carbonation sting.

D - could be a new go to brew, it's delectable and the ABV will not knock you out.

snilsen13, Aug 18, 2006
Photo of Estarrio
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured pitch black, oil with a small coffee colored head. Head dissipates rapidly to a small, intricate lacings.

Heavenly aroma of coffee, chocolate, vanilla, molasses, sweet and roasted malts.

Sweet, burned sugar, molasses and coffee flavors mix with sweet and roasted malts to create a nice taste. The sweetness is balanced by a bitter, hoppy aftertaste, that leaves the palate slightly dry.

This is a full bodied beer with a nice creamy consistency. Great mouthfeel and balance of flavors render this brew a good, drinkable porter.

Estarrio, Aug 18, 2006
Photo of plaid75
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a deep brown hue with a one finger tan head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured strong coffee and caramel aromas. A nice toasted grain element.

The taste was comprised of bitter coffee, cocoa and caramel/toffee flavors. Excellent toasted grain body.

The mouthfeel was full and dry.

Overall an excellent porter. Very drinkable and highly recommended.

plaid75, Aug 14, 2006
Photo of bjohnson
4.58/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Pours an almost black with a good looking caramel colored one finger head. Nice retnetion with good lacing.
S: Big roasted malt notes mixed with sweet chocolate and caramel. Very nice smelling porter. Coffee ice cream smells after a few whiffs.
T/M: Big roasted coffee taste. Nice backing of caramel and burnt toffee. Extra creamy and smooth in the mouth--coats like a coffee milkshake. Hops announce themselves with a bitterness on the palate on the back of the tongue, but go undetected otherwise. Nice medium body with a good level of carbonation.
D: Probably the best example of an American Porter I've had. Smuttynose just can't go wrong. Highly recommended.

bjohnson, Aug 12, 2006
Photo of briman
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from bottle into standard pint glass.

Pours a very dark brown, almost opaque, with some ruby highlights when held up to the light. Nice half inch brown head, good retention. Lots of lacing.

Aroma is very roasty...dark roasted malts, coffee, and chocolate.

Taste is rich and roasty as well. Dark roasted malts, lots of coffee flavor, with some dark chocolate. The roastiness lasts all the way to the finish, and couples with a nice mild hop bite which hangs around nicely into the aftertaste.

Medium-full body, moderate carbonation. Smooth, and creamy going down. As far as aroma & taste go, this is maybe one of the more roasty porters I have ever had. Great balance...all of the flavors come together nicely, with nothing being heavy handed. A porter this good, I could easily down a few of in an evening.

briman, Aug 10, 2006
Photo of mcallister
4.43/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is jet black with a seeming vail around it keeping any light from getting through. A creamy mocha colored head fades quickly leaving a thin raspy layer with a rind around the glass and very trace lacing.

What a great smelling Porter. Thick, roasted, chocolate malt, with hints of coffee, black currant, vanilla pudding, and a somewhat floral hop.

Perfectly named. This Porter is Robust, big and masculine, devouring the taste buds with it's rich roasty, chocolate malt, a good amount of carbonation as well but not over the top; fits the beer like a glove. Flavors of freshly brewed coffee, with cream and vanilla flavoring. Hints of dark fruit on the long finish such as black currant, and some black olive. Hop prescence on the finish balances this complex beast nicely.

Overall a great Porter that I wish I had access to all the time for Saturday morning, noon, and night during college football season.


mcallister, Aug 03, 2006
Photo of cokes
4.4/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black lined with the tiniest glints of magenta below a cropped brown froth.
Scented strongly of tar, smoke, liquorice, and pine sap.
Enters full of chocolate, and segues into smoke and asphalt. Burnt dark fruit and anise lurk, then are tased but the concluding, buzzing wintergreen hop current.
Medium built, solid in mold, as easy to gulp as it is to savor.
It's stands alongside porters such as Eddy Fitz as paramont in the American class.

cokes, Aug 03, 2006
Photo of assurbanipaul
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark coffee black-brown with a solid half-inch tan head. Aroma is more coffee, sweet milk and dry chocolate malt.

Taste is of cold coffee or espresso, strong with more malt. Some lactic elements, plenty of black patent and bitter, rich dark chocolate flavors.

Mouthfeel is medium-light, very smooth. "Robust" is quite an accurate description for this as it's like a porter with the volume turned up (without the ABV hike). I could definitely session this.

assurbanipaul, Jul 26, 2006
Photo of Westsidethreat
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Deep rich java brown with a creamy one finger medium beige head.

S: Good stuff. Loads of milk chocolate, cafe au lait, faint hints of cola and burnt embers.

T Begins as deep roasted barley..burnt and delicious. From there the roasted grains transition to more of a roasted coffee flavor..slightly acidic and bitter. Cocoa richness takes the reigns and takes the beer to fruition. Finishes with lingering roasted bitterness and a sweet creaminess.

M: Medium body with a full mouthfeel.

D: Now thats a porter. Deep, complex, chocolatey and roasted. Great porter. Another good beer traded by JeffKrenner

Westsidethreat, Jul 24, 2006
Photo of LvilleIPA
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint. Black as night with a GREAT thick, dark tan head.

Very chocolately smell along with roasted coffee and a bit of fruitiness. Really a nice blend of smells.

Fantastic taste. Lots (i mean LOTS) of chocolate to it. It's got some roasted flavors that give way to a great bitterness. Also a slight taste of alcohol towards the end. Very nice porter taste though.

I feel as though I would've expected a "heavier" feel from this one. The taste and smell are huge, but surprisingly, there mouthfeel is slightly light with little to no carbonation.

Ok, I finished reviewing this, and realized my glass is almost empty. Really can't believe how easy this one is to drink.

Overall, a GREAT porter that is worthy of a try. I happen to like most of Smuttynose's beer, and this is definitely one of their top styles. Good for winter, but the light body makes it a nice change of pace during the summer as well.

LvilleIPA, Jul 19, 2006
Photo of asabreed
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: This looks more like an imperial stout than a porter; there's not light coming through this sucker at all. The mocha colored head lasts long, leaving thick rings around the glass as it slowly gives way to the air around it. After a few minutes and a few sips it's still about 1/2" and holding on for dear life.

Smell: A good balanced of unsweetened chocolate with a bit of roastiness, some coffee and mocha aromas, and some fruitiness of berries. Also there's a breadiness that stays up front, with just a tinge of hops in the back of the nose.

Taste: Some sourness from possibly the hops, breadiness, light fruitiness from the cherries, and heavy unsweetened chocolate with some toasted husk and grain undertones also. Gets a bit sweeter, which is nice, as it warms, and all the flavors seem to be coming together a little better also.

Mouthfeel: A moderately creamy body without the heaviness that some porters manage to carry with them.

Drinkability: A very solid example of the style, though the risk factor could be amped up and make this a stupendous beer. Still, a great example of a style that's very tasty and easy to drink.

asabreed, Jul 18, 2006
Photo of Liquids
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pitch black liquor with a molases colored, creamy, 4 finger head? The head actually holds too, and there is noticale yeast at the bottom, meaning this ages well despite being three months past date. Impressive pour. Smells of slight alcohol and of american hops, cocoa, deep aromas, a little grassy as well. A unique aroma that I fail to be able to articulate. Taste is complex, fully and charred. Starts smoooth and sweet, and evolves into a roasty charred finish with the hops spiking in the aftertaste. Noticable hop zing after the malt has shown it's complex character. Mouthfeel is good on carbonation, full bodied, hearty and prefect for a porter. Overall I prefer anchor porter, but this is a contender worth drinking. I just avoid beers that are noticably charred in general, but I'll probably return here occasionaly anyway because it's just tasty. A great beer.

Liquids, Jul 18, 2006
Photo of SethB2
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a Tulip.

A - Pours a deep redish, brown, approaching black with a thin one finger mocha colored head that fizzes out (litterally) pretty quickly.

S - Cherries, chocolate, and coffee. Also a clear breadiness following it all up. Very nice on the nose.

T - Mocha is the first thing I notice, followed by a sweetness before fading a little to the bitter side. The breadiness on the nose is multiplied here, and it provided a nice effect for the beer.

M - Surprisingly, its a bit thin and lacks carbonation. Other than that, it is pretty good.

D - Good. I'd love to be able to get this beer locally.

Many thanks to BA JeffKrenner for the surprise package-o-beer.

SethB2, Jul 15, 2006
Photo of gnoff
3.58/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sampled from 12 fl oz bottle courtesy of a friend, traded from the USA..

Very dark brown color, beige-brown head.
Chocolate sweet and raissin scent.
Dry mouthfeel with initial "too strong instant coffee" taste.
Sweet turning to dark chocolate aftertaste.
A bit thin body.

gnoff, Jul 15, 2006
Photo of jabocu
3.65/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark almost opague coffee brown. Had a one finger head that dissipated slowly. Smell was lots of coffee and chocolate with some nice orange/citrus hopiness in the background. Some licorice and slight alcohol on the nose. Flavor was a little harsh I felt for a porter... guess that's why it's a robust porter. Lots of roasted barley, coffee astringency with some notes of chocolate and licorice. The hop flavor and bitterness was very mild and hidden from the roasted barley. Very drinkable beer however, I just was expecting something a little smoother. Once I got used to it, it was very good, and drank two more :)

jabocu, Jul 11, 2006
Photo of MaltyGoodness
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle

Pours a coal black color with a small tan head that recedes to the edge of the glass. Decent lacing on the glass.

Aroma of deep roasted malts, rich espresso, and cocoa. A slight hop scent is also present.

Rich roasted malts hit fast upfront and lead into dark espresso and cocoa flavors. A slight hop taste and bitterness appear toward the finish and the bitterness lingers slightly.

Full body, light carbonation.

This is a nice porter with a meaty, bold flavor. There are not many better examples of the style.

MaltyGoodness, Jul 04, 2006
Smuttynose Robust Porter from Smuttynose Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 2,030 ratings.