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Smuttynose Robust Porter - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Robust PorterSmuttynose Robust Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,064 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,064
Hads: 2,579
Avg: 4.14
pDev: 16.18%
Wants: 194
Gots: 390 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company
New Hampshire, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Porter | 6.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-18-2000

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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Smuttynose Robust Porter Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,064 | Hads: 2,579
Photo of Neorebel
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Robust Porter pours a deep brown color with a voluminous tan head. If looks are any indication, this is going to be an exemplary Porter. The aroma is very sweet and fresh, with a touch of coffee. Strong and flavorful, unsweetened chocolate is dominant, with a little bit of sweet malt, a subtle hop appearance and a roasty, bitter finish. Very full mouthfeel but medium-bodied and fairly drinkable. This is quite robust indeed and is right up there with my favorites in the style. A great value too usually, compared to four-packs of other brands in this style.

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Photo of Jeffreysan
4.53/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, completely opaque, pitch-black color, with two fingers of chocolate/caramel-colored head that slowly dissolved away into a thin lacing of foam that completely covered the top of the beer. As the beer drinks, it leaves behind a nice set of foam rings that gripped the sides of the glass.

Aroma: Very aromatic, with tons of rich, earthy, bready, roasted malt up front, imparting notes of espresso, freshly toasted dark bread, dark chocolate, some subtle smoke, and quite a bit of brown sugar and toffee.

Taste: Wow! A delicious beer! Strong flavors of bready, roasted malt up front, followed by some dark chocolate, some subtle smoke, and quite a bit of brown sugar and toffee-like sweetness. At the finish, there is some subtle dark chocolate and espresso-like bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Chewy and very smooth, as there is very little in the way of carbonation. With an ABV of 6.2%, there is no alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is a very roasty, very delicious porter! Definitely work a drink and highly recommended to those who like a lot of espresso and dark chocolate in their porters.

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Photo of LaneMeyer
4.21/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Very nice porter. Pours nice and dark.
Smells of chocolate and molasses.
Tastes rich, dark chocolate. Little bit of a sour aftertaste. Not a complex beer but delivers nicely with what it is.
Thick mouth feel. Very nice.
Overall, can't get a much better American style porter than this.

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Photo of Justin23060
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

L- Very dark for a porter. Almost no light coming through at all. Barely a hint of amber edging. Stiff 2 finger light brown head that took its time receding and laced beautifully.

S- A little bit of caramel hidden by dominate chocolate. Glad to smell some fantastic leathery porter tang that is sometimes lacking in American Porters. A little metallic from over cooling but that quickly disappeared as it warmed.

T- This could easily be called a Chocolate Porter. There is also some mild nuttiness as it warms. Again that fantastic leather tang that only authentic porters have. Despite the dryness it has a nice mild linger.

F- Carb is soft and creamy. Not too thin and not too heavy. Starts and ends pretty dry. One of the driest porters I've had... but I think dry beers are growing on me.

O- Thanks, and a shout out, to Mike for reintroducing me to a beer that in my memory was ordinary but upon reevaluation is pretty extraordinary. Despite the name being kinda gross I'd recommend it to anyone who wants to know a near perfect example of the style.


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Photo of Braz
4.59/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is a superb porter. I wish it wasn't so rare that I bumped into one like this. Outstanding coffee and chocolate balance. Sweetness is just right. Nice smooth full body. If Smuttynose makes an imperial version of this, it'd be like Moby Dick for my Captain Ahab.

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Photo of moonboogie_n8
4.11/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

decent porter, taste is full but smooth and clean. like a coffee/chocolate porter should.
recommended. not the best, but very well done. -12 oz bottles in chalice & snifter-

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Photo of brurevu
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured with a thick tan head and the beer itself was a pitch black that foreshadowed an intense and rich drinking experience. The aroma was heavy on the coffee and dark chocolate notes with a tinge of sweet malts. The taste was resolutely robust with a deep and full roasted malt flavor that was slightly sweet but full of chocolate and slight hints of coffee. The deep chocolate and coffee notes became more pronounced as it warmed along with the sweetness. The creamy and smooth body left a lingering burnt roasty bitterness on my palate which quickly disappeared with each sip. The Robust Porter was a bountiful and complex porter that lived up to the Robust moniker.

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Photo of SFNC
4.16/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a very good porter, nothing fancy, just a great balance between sweet carmel and a dark roast bitterness. The feel is full and smooth. Very drinkable.

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Photo of HamdenHector
4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: deep brown; 1 finger medium brown head that receded slowly to a thin, uneven cap; nice lacing;

S: milk chocolate, roasted grains, and a hint of coffee;

T: for a moment, roasted grain; milk chocolate comes in quickly and stays through the finish; moderate bitterness and a bit of coffee at the end;

M: medium bodied; a little sticky; moderate carbonation; slightly dry finish;

O:not special, but very nice:

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Photo of marieli
3.74/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle. Appearance is close to black. Not sure where the company or others get "amber" from as a descriptor. A very thin and unimpressive head that left quickly. I smelled malt as the predominant aroma. Was not very sweet in smell or taste, although I would have preferred a touch more sweetness. Some coffee showed up as it warmed, but never chocolate. Flavor was sort of neutral, something for everybody. Feel was close but not truly creamy.

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Photo of Pegasus
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Massive, dense, and robust tan head graces a dark amber body, which verges on obsidian. Intricate lacing on the glass walls relates an epic in hieroglyphics whose meaning is lost to the world.

Aroma: Deep aromas of dark roasted coffee dominate the aroma, there are as well, notes of bitter cocoa, and dark roasted, almost charred malt.

Taste: The taste begins with deep, dark roasted malt, as the taste progresses, bitter coffee utterly dominates the taste, although charred malt and prominent grapefruit rind hops make their presence felt. Late in the taste, charred malt is notable. The relatively high ABV (6.2%) is artfully concealed.

Mouth feel: Smooth, and very full, with only mere hints of carbonation.

Drinkability/notes: A wonderful beer, which seems apropos for the winter months, simply excellent

Presentation: Packaged in a standard twelve-ounce brown glass long neck bottle, sealed with a pop-off crown, served in a New Belgium Brewing chalice.

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Photo of CraigS119
3.66/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Porters aren't really my cup of tea, but here we go... got it as a gift in a beer-of-the-month package. Apparently it's actually 6.6% abv and 33 ibu (per their website).

Malts: North American 2-Row, Carastan, C-120, Special B, Chocolate, Carafa II DH
Hops: Bittering: Magnum, Flavoring: Cascade

Pours like soy sauce with a thin ring of khaki head. Smells of delicate sweet cream, vanilla, and cocoa. Tastes of bittersweet chocolate malt and smokey oak. Mouthfeel is somewhat watery, but there is some carbonation and a thickness in the finish. Overall, I've never liked porters. I'm not sure why, I think it's a combination the sweetness with acerbity, lingering smokey and bitter notes and a watery body. Either way though, this beer isn't bad. I may not like them, but after tasting this one, I do respect them.

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Photo of StoutHunter
4.09/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I picked up a bottle of Smuttynose's Robust Porter a couple weeks ago for $1.79 at Holiday Market. I've been wanting to try this beer for a little while now and I'm interested to see how it turns out, so lets see how it goes. Best by 6/8/15. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a imperial pint glass.

A- The label looks good, I like the design of it and I think it's just a little eye catching. It poured a nice dark black color that didn't let any light come through and it had a finger and a half of creamy dark tan head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and it left some sticky and patchy lacing behind. This is a really nice looking Porter, It's just what I expect from the style.

S- The aroma starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness with the roasted malts being the first to show up and they impart some nice dark roasted malt, slightly grainy, coffee, and dark chocolate aromas. Up next comes fruity yeast which imparts a noticeable dark fruit and cherry like aroma with a slight bit of earthy hops showing up at the end. This beer has a good aroma and it's pretty much what I expect from the style.

T- The taste seems to be pretty similar to the aroma and it starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness with the dark roasted malts being the first to show up and they impart the exact same aspects that they did in the aroma with the dark chocolate seeming to stick out the most. Up next comes that same fruity yeast, but it's just a little lighter this time and it's followed by an even lighter amount of earthy hops. On the finish there's a very light amount of medium bitterness with a bitter coffee, lightly charred and light dark fruit aftertaste. This is a good tasting Porter, it's got nice balance and it's true to style.

M- Smooth, fairly crisp, slightly sticky, on the thicker side of being medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. This beer had a very nice mouthfeel and I think it works very well with it.

Overall I thought this was a good beer and I thought it was a good example of an American Porter, it had pretty much all the aspects that I look for in the style and it didn't seem to have weak points. This beer has good drinkability, it's smooth, fairly crisp, slightly sticky, not too filling and the taste does a good job at holding my attention, I could drink a couple of these especially during the colder weather. What I like the most about this beer was just how true to style it is, it reminds me of a couple local Porters that I first tried when I got into craft beer. What i like the least about this beer was nothing, I don't think it has any off flavors or any weak points. I would buy this beer again when In the mood and I might even have to put it against some of my favorites of the style. I would recommend this beer, especially if your a big fan of Porters. All in all I enjoyed this beer, it was just what I wanted out of the style and I'm glad to have this an option now. It's my new favorite Smuttynose beer and it's one of the better example of the style that I've had. Good job guys, this was a really tasty Porter, keep it up.

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Photo of MattSweatshirt
3.87/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown hues at the bottom curve of the glass but otherwise black. Big fluffy light brown head.

Really nice chocolate and roast notes. Medium bodied and carbonated.

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Photo of tugdriver7
4.09/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The second entry in my six bottle American Porter taste test. Deep black color in the glass, nearly opaque with a dark tan to leather brown colored head that lasted awhile, lacing the glass nicely. Rich (like a black coffee milkshake) mouthfeel, with roasted chocolate/coffee in the nose. A hint of malt sweetness (dark roasted) on the tongue and then a rich roasted smoke with a bit of residual sweetness, ending with a quick hint of bitterness. I understand the attraction and the beer was good, but the flavors came and went without really combining or balancing each other, as if it wasn't sure what it wanted to be. As the glass warmed, there was also a hint of astringent alcohol in the nose that was warming, yes, but detracted from the overall flavor. Again, I agree with the high ratings, but I was disappointed a bit in the way the flavors joined overall.

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Photo of Jasonkyeager
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

The perfect balance between malt and hops. Thought the smell was great. The taste was exactly for me. I'll definitely search this one out and try to find it. Great Beer.

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Photo of ThaneMcC
3.79/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

In brief, nice dark brown pour with light tan head. Smells strongly of dark malts, burn sugar, leather and smoke. Taste is strong burnt, bitter with mild sweet molasses and rather sharp, bitter carob/cocoa flavor and a lot of non specific smokey notes. Unlike any porter I've had, a little put off by the almost acrid flavor and finish. A bit of a burnt aftertasted I'm not accustomed to, perpahs this is typical of the style?

Good overall, complex flavor profile, I tend to prefer sweeter maltier porters.

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Photo of Oldejoe
4.06/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Look. Beautiful dark brown caramel, lusty tan head.
Smell. Toasted stuff, leather, spicey twang.
Taste. Toasted stuff, balanced, slight malt in the front, slight hoppy and dry finish.
Mouthfeel. Medium body, slight crispiness, a bit chewy in the back.
Overall. For me, it's a bit thin and a bit too middle of the road. I prefer a stronger lean toward either the malt or the hop. Not nuts about dry finishes in a dark beer.

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Photo of CHickman
4.09/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black color with a huge foamy 2-3 finger dark tan colored head that had a ton of tiny bubbles and dissipated very slowly with craters forming as it dropped and foamy rings as it went down – a very impressive looking head.

Smells of roasted malt, cocoa powder, caramel, molasses, coffee beans, dark chocolate bar, some fruity sweetness like a citrus hop, and then more roasted espresso or coffee notes. Very nice smelling beer that is indeed robust smelling.

Tastes picks up where the nose left off and is a mix of cocoa powder, molasses, caramel, toffee, roasted malt, coffee beans, dark chocolate bar, citrus hops like grapefruit or orange peel, charred wood and some smoked grains that have a coffee or hop bitterness yet sweeten up as it finishes. The flavor is less coffee and chocolate and a tad more citrus sweetness, which was very interesting as it added nice balance and changed what I thought was going to be a malt heavy brew with a lot of roast to it; I really enjoyed the sweetness which was whipped cream-like and had toffee and/or brown sugar trail to the slightly bitter finish.

Mouthfeel was smooth and on the watery side with mild carbonation, a medium body that had some chewy consistency, and a nice slightly bitter finish that had sweet fruit and sweet chocolate notes help it ease down quite enjoyably. A damn good porter that always delivers.

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Photo of Booty
4.74/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is a great Porter, one of my favorite. Pick up a Sixer, you'll love it. Perfect for the winter. Grab some before this Tues Blizzard. World Class for sure. Cheers.

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Photo of superspak
4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, best before 6/8/2015. Pours fairly pitch black color with a 2 finger dense and rocky tan head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice dense soapy lacing clings around- the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, toffee, dark bread, light nuttiness, light smoke/char, light herbal, and roasted earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/roasted/bready malt and light earthy hop notes; with good strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, toffee, dark bread, light nuttiness, light smoke/char, light herbal, and roasted earthiness. Fair amount of roast and herbal hop bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, toffee, dark bread, light nuttiness, light smoke/char, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malt and light earthy hop flavors; with a great roasted bitterness/sweetness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, creamy, and lightly slick/chalky mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is an awesome porter style. All around great robustness, complexity, and balance of dark/roast/bready malt and light earthy hop flavors; and very smooth to drink for the abv. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of DaveBar
3.97/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Purchased at the LCBO for around $15.00 for a 6pk of 355ml bottles. Served at a chilly 4deg C in a tulip

A- Opens well and pours a small head that is gone pretty darn fast. Very dark.

S- Has some good malt and coco. Slight toffee

T- Lots of coco. Touch of chocolate. Some coffee. Very light all around. No detection of alcohol period. Not really a good thing at 6.6% so be careful.

M- Light but grainy. Typical porter dryness.

O- Rather nice porter. Porters are not my cup of tea but as far as porters go this one is pretty good.

Food Pairing

This pretty good porter went well with..... Fish and chips. Wasn't the best pairing but it was pretty good. Halibut in a beer batter- Porter beer!


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Photo of dbl_delta
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from bottle into pint glass. Surprisingly heavily carbonated. Dark reddish-brown. Solid two-finger head; nice lacing.

This is not as sweet as a lot of the porters. There is malt, coffee, chocolate - but not overwhelming. It finishes on a nice dry, bitter note.

A really good porter. Right up there with Edmund Fitz.

(Where DOES Smuttynose find their pictures for the labels??)

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Photo of uvachief
4.11/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours a deep dark mahogany red. One of the best looking beers I have seen. Full 3 fingers of head with abb aggressive pour. Nice lingering head with lacing. Smell the malt, coffee and chocolate. Not as full in the mouth as you would expect from the head and look but not light either. Carbonation is heavy. Chewy though. Taste the malts and hops but well balanced and smooth. Very subtle coffee and chocolate notes. Goes down easy without burn or boozy aftertaste. Less spice than expected. Good winter porter. I could drink several back to back. Halfway through a pint and head still lingers with nice lacing. Very impressive porter.

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Photo of mick303
4.04/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From bottle, good appearance with a dark brown colour and good film retention. Smell had coffee and some dark cocoa but also some fusual alcohol esters. Pleasant roasty and licorice herbalness. Taste is creamy with chocolate and toasty malt and a good dose of bitter earthy hop notes. Pleasant feel, dark licorice notes, dark malt, some orange spice. Good roastiness with a creamy satisfying mouthfeel. Enjoyable porter, some warmth and spice to it. Pretty good balance to make it a satisfying but quenching porter.

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Smuttynose Robust Porter from Smuttynose Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,064 ratings.