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Smuttynose Robust Porter - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Robust PorterSmuttynose Robust Porter

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2,022 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,022
Reviews: 1,000
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 10.63%
Wants: 137
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: 2,022 | Reviews: 1,000 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of smcolw
3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours near black where no light will shine through. Excellent beige head (three fingers) that leaves good lace on the glass side.

Nice cocoa aromas.

Heavy cocoa (as opposed to chocolate) flavors, almost bittersweet. Chewy in body with good carbonation. The aftertaste is similar to dark chocolate with a small bit of hop.

A very nice entry into the Porter category.

smcolw, Jun 03, 2006
Photo of CRJMellor
4.58/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Review #900 - Thanks to PPoitras for the serving.
Pours a dark brown and mahogany color with a very thick tan head with compact bubles that leaves a veneer of lace on the pint.
Aroma of hot chocoloate, some tobacco, chocolate and some roasted coffee.
Flavors of chocolate, roasted nuts and light coffee seep through. Some herbal hop notes poek their way onto the scene as it warms a bit.
Mouthfeel is perfectly moderate. Full on the palate yet enough variety of textures and flavors to keep the palate moving through the spectrum and not get stuck or tired anywhere.
Drinkability is absolutely first rate. Can think of no better standard American Porter, compares favorably to Fuller's Porter in my opinion. Great beer.

CRJMellor, May 26, 2006
Photo of ommegangpbr
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rich ,tasty, roasty, smooth... just about everything one would expect from a well made porter. Nothing about this really stood out for me but then again the freshness dating showed this as teetering on the edge of freshness. Medium to thick on the palate; quite a bit like good quality, sweetened coffee in over all flavor.
Reminds me quite a bit of Anchor porter... or rather, the Anchor porter I had that wasn't the freshest. This is a fine choice for when in the mood for a deep flavored brew.

ommegangpbr, May 25, 2006
Photo of rhoadsrage
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a deep black body with a cinnamon brown head that last and last and then some big bubbles start to push through the surface. No carbonation visible.

S- The smell of coffee beans and dark roasted malt are rich and fresh.

T- This beer has a dark coffee bean flavor with some notes of black roasted malt and dark roasted malts. There is a tart note that has a faint cream hint and then finishes with a tangy and green hop note. The taste of black malt hangs on the tongue nicely after each sip.

M- This beer has a medium-full mouthfeel with a creamy texture.

D- The malt flavors are nice and robust but the tart notes are a little odd and with the hops at the finish they kind of class. Good malt profile and an interesting beer.

rhoadsrage, May 23, 2006
Photo of orfeu
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

1/2 gallon growler filled at Consumer's Beverage Center in Williamsville. Deep, black-coffee brown with an incredibly dense burnt sienna foam cap, just thick as all get out. Aromas of roasted malts abound: coffee, toasted cocoa powder, faint smoke scent, and an earthy compost hop presence. Taste is predominantly burnt toffee and black patent malts -- a smoky and earthy hop flavor emerges near the end right before a wonderfully smooth and bitter finish. Aftertaste of dark roasted espresso beans. Mouthfeel is quite silky, but not too thick. Medium-thin body. Stupidly drinkable. Can't say I'd ever pass this one up as an option for a growler to take to a party (which is exactly where I consumed this sucker -- yeah, I'm a dork, I took notes on a beer at a party...)

orfeu, May 22, 2006
Photo of clickpush
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pour: 12oz bottle to pint glass. Pours an opaque black with a very dark half inch head that survives for about a minute before deflating into some healthy looking lacings. Looks oily on top, iridescent... very interesting.

Nose: Smell is too faint - pick up notes of coffee and a tangy bitterness, which again is similar to coffee.

Mouth: Wow! The taste matches the nose (but way stronger) and look 100%. It's like drinking a chilled coffee with a beer's excellent carbonation and balance. Sweet, sour, bitter... nice finish in the swallow with some sugary toffee flavor in the malt that's a little faint but works to balance out the coffee bitterness. I love this beer!

clickpush, May 22, 2006
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
3.35/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

This beer looks pitch black at first, but on a closer inspection, it’s really an unbelievably dark brown. The head is a light coffee tan that fell to a thin film, but left a few spots of lace.

Smells strongly of dry coffee and dark chocolate with a sour smokiness. Sadly, there’s some sort of antiseptic smell that reminds me of hospitals.

Tastes of dark toasted bread with a few flashes of strawberry, but then finishes with an intense smoke character that tastes slightly metallic. Robust indeed! This finished much like I suppose sucking on a charcoal briquette would taste like.

The mouth feel is light to medium bodied with micro carbonation that delightfully thickens up the body. This is really top notch!

This one’s just way to smoky for me to really enjoy. If smoky is your thing, you’ll be in heaven.

DarkerTheBetter, May 19, 2006
Photo of Windowdog
3.58/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from a bottle I purchased as part of a sampler case.

Appearance: The beer happened to be perfectly backlit by a strong light during the pour and it was actually a nice very dark ruby/orange color. In the glass the porter is essentially black with an inch and a half of nice dark tan head. The head settled slowly but maintained complete coverage

Smell: As expected a strong roast malt aroma, with slight coffee and alcohol overtones.

Taste: Deeply roasted malt, with a defintie smoky finish but without the charred wood taste that I dislike in the some darker porters and stouts. Very smooth and even with the slightest hop taste in the background.

Mouthfeel: Thick and substantial, as I like beers of this type, nothing sadder than a watery porter. It was almost creamy it was so smooth. Really a great texture.

Drinkability:A nice dark roasted porter that starts strong and finishes smoky and smooth. Not my favorite type of beer but I'd definintely keep a couple in the frig for those occasions when I want a change for the typical stoudts.

Windowdog, May 18, 2006
Photo of benwiley
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

wow, this is very nice. i mean, its very good for the category. good for what it is. that being said, its not going to winover any non-stout drinkers, but for us lovers out there, we'll all be happy. again, that being said, its not at all super, incrediblle sweet, super chocolate dude beer but, i mean it is what is. good stuff.

benwiley, May 15, 2006
Photo of pbr85
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass
A: Jet black with a two inch, chocolatey head that just looks ridiculously delicious. Can't wait to drink it. Lacing is really good.
S: Chocolate, roasted coffee, toffee. Very strong and delicious smelling.
T: Mmm, robusty goodness. Espresso flavors are very strong and refreshing. Dark chocolate is strong on the pallate, slightly bitter like my roomate Justin (user:jslot38). Earthy hop presence makes itself known at the end of the sip.
M: Nice and smooth. Carbonation is good.
D: Oh yes, this is one of those beers that you need to try, asap. It deserves a place in every beer lover's fridge.

pbr85, May 12, 2006
Photo of tweeder263
3.28/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

pours out a near black beer with slight ruby highlights.smell of licorice but not overbearing,,very nice smell.taste is pretty dry,,coffee and licorice,,not very complex.mouth feel is pretty bad,,very watery.not a bad beer pretty drinkable,,but nothing outstanding at all about it.

tweeder263, May 06, 2006
Photo of woodychandler
2.9/5  rDev -30%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This arrived with a big, fluffy, deep-tan/light-brown head. The beer was really dark, with very little light able to pass through it. The nose was very roasty, like coffee, but with an underlying malty sweetness. The mouthfeel was thick and full, almost creamy. There was an immediate sensation of roasted coffee beans on the palate. The finish was also roasty, but with a lingering charcoal taste, which I dislike (sorry). This drank more like a stout than a porter. I'm down with it, but not as a session beer.

woodychandler, Apr 19, 2006
Photo of jslot38
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Wow, I gave this one a perfect pour. Lovely frothy dark tan cappucino head over a pitch black body. Head disappears to a top covering, lacing is impressive.

Smell: Overwhelming presence of chocolate, ground coffee beans, a touch of toffee. The smell isn't too complex, its just, well, frankly, pbr85 can smell it from 4 feet away.

Taste: Very very dark chocolate, certainly more like baker's chocolate. Ground coffee beans, nuts, toffee, touch of caramel, some bittering hops present which round out a great tasting beer. Good malt presence, the bitterness of the hops is layered into the malts to near perfection. Robust is certainly a good word of description.

Mouthfeel: Great level of carbonation, heavy on the tongue, but its what one would expect from a beer of this complexity and level of taste.

Drinkability & Notes: I truly do wish that I had gotten more than one of these, as I could see drinking a few of these. However, a few is where I'd max it out. What a great beer, easily the best porter I've yet to have, and has certainly justified this as one of my favorite styles. Another spot on beer from Smuttynose.

jslot38, Apr 13, 2006
Photo of jwc215
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is certainly one of the best porters I've had. It pours dark black with an inviting, solid, tan head that linger through the drink. The smell is rich. Its aroma is that of strong coffee and chocolate with a bitter touch. The taste is simply delicious, and reflects the smell nearly perfectly - coffee, chocolate and a nice citrus touch. It has a full body, but exceptionally smooth mouthfeel. I can drink plenty of this - disappears "too" quickly - in any time of the year!

jwc215, Apr 11, 2006
Photo of dbalsock
3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: This may be the prettiest beer I have ever seen. At first glance I think it might be a rootbeer (pouring dark brown, almost black), but the beautiful dark tan head gives it away as a radiant porter.

Smell: Roasted malts, coffee, flowers and a lovely hint of brown sugar entice me to have a sip.

Taste: The roasted malts sure are robust, and it's wonderful. It is accompanied by a flowery hop presence that adds a nice balance, but not perfect. Upon further inspection a hint of chocolate is brought to my palate, and I am quite satisfied.

Mouthfeel: There is a great balance between the smoothness and the bitterness. My only complaint is that the consistency is a little lighter than I was looking for tonight.

Drinkability: Like i said above, the consistency is a little light, but that adds to it's drinkability. The major set back is the incredible robust nature of this porter, which I find to be a little over the top.

dbalsock, Apr 11, 2006
Photo of ybnorml
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very dark brown,nearly black, beer with deep mahogony highlights. Has a big foamy brown head with good lace. The aroma has a sweet nut like character at first. Then a roasted coffee note come thru with a hint of floral hops in the background. The nut like sweetness comes and goes lightly throughout the taste. The dominating character is however the roasted malts with some bittersweet chocolate and a shot of esspresso snap. The finish is clean and sharp.

ybnorml, Apr 10, 2006
Photo of tastybeer
4.47/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black with a touch of warm brown. Four finger explosive head in an imperial pint glass. Rocky tan colored head sticks nicely to my glass. Sweet and smokey, slight burnt coffee, and smooth sweet chocolate with a bit of cream and butter. Nice and malty. There's little berry tartness that smooths into the burnt smell, balancing the sweetness. Taste holds the same qualities but more 'robust'. Awesome finish + not real full mouth but nonetheless velvety smooth.

This beer makes me say 'mmm porter.'

tastybeer, Mar 25, 2006
Photo of abcsofbeer
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle with December freshness date. The color is a dark brown with hues of purple and red thrown in. The head was very generous after an aggressive pour. The light brown head towered at two fingers high, leaving nice, thick lacing.

The aroma is of bitter chocolate and creamy coffee too. I also detect some buttery honey overtones in the smell too.

The taste is a smooth roasted malt flavor, mixed in with some very nice hop bitterness in the back. The flavors definitely come out as the beer warms. I liked this porter very much. Very well done.

abcsofbeer, Mar 25, 2006
Photo of malty
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours nearly black with faint mahogany edges. Creamy 1/2" beige head.

Scents of espresso with grated dark bitter baker's chocolate on top. Just a hint of burnt wood and fresh malted milk. Blackberry jam mixed with a splash of chocolate liqueur. The scents are very fresh and blossoming.

I raise the 8 oz. mini pilsner glass to my lips and get a swift ushering of the exact same dark bitter baker's chocolate that caressed my nasal passages. The coffee flavors are bold and bitter. There's a generous amount of hops that keep this boisterous dark roasted malty treat meticulously balanced. There's even enough hop presence to lend an almost bone-dry ending. As I sit and wait for the slightly burnt woody flavors to subside, the hops kick-in again to reassure their chalky ending leave you eager to take another mouthful.

Mouthfeel is very nice. I've already described the well-crafted dry finish, but it's a beautiful thing. Its medium body is carbonated at just the right level, keeping the bold flavors dancing on the tongue.

Drinkability is very high. I'd love to pair this with a bowl of beef stew with some rye bread and sharp white cheddar.

Overall a fine treat acquired from warriorsoul in Mass. I'd liken this to an Edmund Fitzgerald, but with more of a coffee/hoppy blast. Truly a big porter that's not shy to make its mark. I'll certainly make this an annual beer trade must.

malty, Mar 19, 2006
Photo of DaPeculierDane
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nearly opaque with a huge imperial like tan-brown head. Aroma is strong and full with wonderful wisps of chocolate, French roast coffee, peanuts, and hex. Taste lets down jut a notch from the huge aroma but it’s still quite enjoyable. Aggressive coffee and hex nut are the dominant flavors. Mouthfeel is full, rich, smooth, drying in the finish, and mildly astringent. Very drinkable.

DaPeculierDane, Mar 18, 2006
Photo of kpantz
3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Executive Summary: Textbook porter. Smuttynose has better offerings IMHO, but this is one porter to which I'd certainly return.

Appearance: Dark-as-night reddish-black with a finger-thick mocha-colored head.

Smell: Roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, figs? Definitely a fruit of some sort in there.

Taste: Smoky, roasted malt flavors dominate throughout. Coffee flavor is equally impressive. A bit of hop bitterness in the back, but only just enough to balance out the deep malt backbone.

Mouthfeel: Slam dunk for a porter here. Medium bodied...right where I like it for a cool weather brew. This is my favorite aspect of a good porter - you get the flavors of a stout in a lighter package.

Drinkability: Give me a cool spring or fall evening, a sweatshirt, a deck chair and a sixer of this!

kpantz, Mar 16, 2006
Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to MuddyFeet for this one!

Appearance: Dark brown, nearly black, with a dense, foamy mocha-colored head which slowly settled over the next few minutes.

Smell: Malty with currents of sweet chocolate and roasted coffee beans running throughout. Faint fruity scent, as well.

Taste: Like a demitasse of espresso served with a small square of chocolate melted within. Caramel. Grains. Hops are piney and they blend quite well with the other flavors. A touch sour. Lingering dry roasty finish.

Will you people please just relax for two seconds? All the rich flavors will come together perfectly, trust me.

Mmm. There. Delish!

Mouthfeel: Nice and creamy. Just a hair above medium in body (medium-plus?). Carbonation remains light.

Drinkability: The first and only porter claiming to be "robust" that really delivered for me. I'm positively nonplussed with amazement. But also saddened by the fact that I can't regularly get this in Georgia. Plenty of flavor, well-balanced, and extreme drinkability make this an outstanding brew.

Other porters beware! Cuz there's a new sherriff a-comin'.

ChainGangGuy, Mar 11, 2006
Photo of Skidz
4.47/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out ruby tinted brown and sits deep chocolately brown in the glass with a large brown head. Fades to a faint skim with good lacings around the glass.

Smells of roasted malts, splotchy prunes and raisins. Caramel and chocolates lie within, light leafy hops add a little spice.

Tastes lightly sweet up front, deeply roasted grains dominate, tossing out charred maple and coffee with hints of cocoa. Fig-ish and dark fruity esters come through, though very mild. Finishes mild-moderately bitter, solid leafy hops all over.

Purely smooth within, but crispy at first with tiny and moderate carbonation in a medium-full body.

Delicious stuff here. Will give any other porter a run for its money.

Skidz, Mar 11, 2006
Photo of akajimmyd
3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance – Jet black, no head or lacing.

Smell – The aspect leaves something to be desired, I really pick up nothing distinct.

Taste – “Robust” coffee malts with a bitter finish on the first sip. As it warms I pick up tart fruits, hints of alcohol and a smoky aged taste.

Mouthfeel – Full, thick and heavy. Almost syrupy.

Drinkability – Really good for one or two but not a session porter. Solid choice in the style.

akajimmyd, Mar 10, 2006
Photo of nortmand
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thick black pour with a finger of tan head.

Roast dominates. Bittersweet chocolate also present.

Sweet up front. Silky chocolate. Bittersweet aftertaste. Abit of astringency midtongue.

Full bodied, but a little oily. Assertive carbonation. Very tasty and quite drinkable.

nortmand, Mar 08, 2006
Smuttynose Robust Porter from Smuttynose Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 2,022 ratings.