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Smuttynose Robust Porter - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Robust PorterSmuttynose Robust Porter

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1,052 Reviews

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Reviews: 1,052
Hads: 2,499
Avg: 4.14
pDev: 15.94%
Wants: 175
Gots: 335 | FT: 5
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:
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
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Reviews: 1,052 | Hads: 2,499
Photo of Jredner
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Smelled like warm just baked chocolate cookies and fresh brewed coffee. Poured like a stout. Dark black with a pinky thickness head that stuck around. Looked like a perfect stout pour instead of a light frothy porter. Flavor was creamy chocolate malts, but still roasty and full in the middle with a slightly bitter black chocolate and coffee finish.

The taste of a stout too just thinned down a little. Bitter end, but more of the chocolate and coffe and even some very mild sweetness. Appropriate porter mouthfeel.

Good stuff.

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Photo of Franchise
4.6/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wow, one of the best selections I've tried from smuttynose. Recommended from my man at Colonial Spirits in Acton. Lets get to the beer. This beer pours a magnificent dark chocolate brown, and leaves a very thin tan lace that continues with the beer as you drink it. The smell is chocolate, caramel, coffee, dark fruit, and a piney leafy essence. As this beer hits the palate it hits you with a kick of espresso hopped chocolate bitterness and finishes with a smooth caramel fruit blast. This is one the best and most complex beers I've had from Smuttynose it is great and def recommended.

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Photo of barrelman
3.25/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I know that this style is more open to interpretation than any other style and I will take that into account, mixing flexible guidelines and preference.

Appearance is dark brown and red tinged with almost no head. The smell is chocolaty. The taste is also dominated by chocolate malt. I consider myself a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to porters and am more against the use of chocolate malt in porter. From there website, I can see that this beer also contains no patent malt, which is a big turnoff for me in this style.

Mouthfeel is good and drinkability is also good.

In the end, I like a porter to be more traditional and distance itself from its little bother, stout. Yeah, you heard me correctly.

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Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.15/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to battlekow for throwing this in a little trade for some of my Lake Louie Reserve Scotch Ale.

Pours a thick, impenetrable black with two fingers of dark tan, rocky head. Nose is, uhh, robust with intense coffee, dark chocolate, woody vanilla notes and bourbon. Taste is as robust as the nose with roasted coffee grounds, baker's chocolate, earthy peat, toasted malt, bourbon barrel cask, and dark fruits. Mouthfeel is thick and smooth. Nice balance of sweet and bitter/roasted while keeping the palate interested. A big tasty porter here, I wish I could get my hands on some of Smutty's other stuff around here - guess I'll have to get it from Milwaukee as they're finally distributing there.

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

Smutty's Robust Porter is actually black, which is nice to see in a porter, with a very dark chocolate-colored head. Certainly looks robust. Smells and tastes quite chocolatey. The scent also has a nutty character, and the taste is a bit grassy and ends with a husky bitterness. In addition, there's a slight, unpleasant tartness to the flavor that reminds me, oddly, of Major Tom's Pomegranate Wheat. Mouthfeel is nice and thick. Overall, very good, and nice to see a "robust" porter live up to its billing (paging St. Bridget).

Many thanks to Px2GrafX for the chance to try this.

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Photo of dirtylou
3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz single received as a "surprise" in a monster opening trade with Px2GrafX

I'm not a huge porter guy for some reason, well actually i think I am just more particular about which porters i like.

appearance: another bizarre label from smuttynose...pours an extremely dark brown, not quite black, with some ruby highlights visible when put up to the light...brown/ruby creamy head tops it off

smell: very dark toasted malts, chocolate, faint dark coffee beans, evident hoppiness.

taste: sweet and dark toasted malts, sweet dark chocolate, burnt coffee beans, slight hoppiness, definately some plum/raisin in there

mouthfeel: fairly creamy, a little hop tingle

drinkability: i cant really session porters...this one doesnt deviate from the norm in drinkability

overall: definately a tasty porter, probably makes my top 5 of the style

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Photo of Px2GrafX
4.4/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

presentation: 12oz. bottle with a black and white photo and a purple and orange banner across the top of the label. on the banner is "robust porter" in a plain sans serif font, and the photo is of what looks like a stongman male circus performer standing with a barrel of beer under one arm (undoubtedly smutty's robust porter) and a female circus performer sitting on his other arm. "cirque du francois oeuf" is printed on the bottom of the label. (translates roughly to: circus of the french egg?). 5.7% abv displayed along with a december notch in the label for freshness. no year, but i'm assuming dec. '04. the smutty logo is on the orange neck label.

appearance: an extremely dark brown almost black with minimal highlights in a stein glass. poured aggressively i got a half inch head that dropped fairly quickly to a patchy capper. moderate lacing.

smell: malty sweet with chocolate and coffee takin' the forefront. caramelly sweet roastiness. some faint dark fruits in the background. hops are hard to discern.

taste: huge roasty chocolate esspresso flavors. there's also an apparent sourness, almost lemony flavor as well. nice bitterness and balance as well. bitter sweet chocolate aftertaste and finish is just a tad dry.

mouthfeel: slightly heavier than medium body with excellent carbonation. creamy and smooth with a smooth swallow. similar mouthfeel as a good oatmeal stout. very nice.

drinkability: drinkability is good, but this is a sippin' porter. alcohol is well hidden and theres a good teasing aftertaste, but you just want to savor this brew.

overall: there are other "robust" porters out there, but this is the first truely robust one i've experienced. packed with flavor and super smooth, this gets a couple of thumbs from me.

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Photo of GnomeKing
4.09/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The head was a little lame, but the lacing was ample. The strength and character of the smell pleasantly surprised me. There was distinct banana aroma mixed in with the malt and coffee. Nice touch. I couldn't wait to drink the beer after my first sniff.

The brew's taste didn't exactly live up to my enthusiasm, but it was a nice, dry porter. There are tastes of coffee and toffee, with some spiciness. Cool. Interesting. It's well-balanced and drinkable to the last drop. Not my favorite in the style, but creative and enjoyable enough to try once in a while.

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

Had on tap at Two Brother's Tavern in Middlebury, Vermont. A little hesitant to try because I though this only came around in the Winter. Nonetheless gave it a go, and it certainly didn't show any signs of not being fresh.

Poured from the tap into a pint glass the beer was a dark near perfect jet black color. It was topped by a light brown head about 1 finger thick that reduced down to a little more than a sliver and stayed there for the rest of the sample. Tons of lacing down the sides of the glass.

The nose was coffee and chocolate innitially. With a bit of a burnt smell to it. Some slight mocha in the nose and roasted malt.

Taste was as the name indicates: robust. Heavy on the palate with a big roasted chocolate and malt flavor dominating over all else. The back ground gave way to black coffee and a slight bitterness with each sip that was more than balanced by the matiness of the beer.

Heavy and thick on the palate with little to no carbonation to speak of.

Very enjoyable and very drinkable. If this was on tap now, I will be seeking this out in the Winter months to come for sure.

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Photo of jakester
4.35/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I got this as a single at Union Jack's on the Manatawny. Date, which was March, was clearly notched on the label. Though this might be considered slightly out of date, it was still great. A nice job by the brewery.

Pours an almost opaque black/garnet with brownish tints. A nice, two finger head of light brown foam forms on top. The head eventually drops to islands and a ring, but lacing was observed throught.

Wonderful chocolate notes in the aroma. A touch of herbal hop smell in there also. Nice brown sugar and molasses. Smells inviting.

The flavor stands up to its "robust" title. Huge chocolate and molasses, with a good dose of hop bittering to boot. Really smooth, with just a slight hint of roasted barley/coffee flavor. Herbal/grassy hops are there but muted by the big malt base. Aftertaste is like eating a bag of chocolate morsels. Very nice beer.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, with a soft to medium carbonation bite. Some residual sugar, but not alot; to style. A little grab at the back of the throat from hop bittering. Finish is long and dark.

I can just imagine sitting around a campfire in November drinking about a million of these. Very tasty, interesting beer. Highly recommended.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.67/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 1.5

Appearance - Almost black. Two fingers of frothy brown head that left a thick ring of lace around the glass. Beautiful.

Smell - Wonderful coffee odor, not espresso, its a less pugent bean. A slight piney hop and sweet dark chocolate smell on top of that. I'm excited.

Taste - A delicious coffee and chocolate flavor accompanied by a soft piney hop, it is slightly sweet, that slowly shifts to a coffee bitterness and less dominant hop bitterness. I'd prefer it slightly sweeter and a little less bitter. Oh well, still great.

Mouthfeel - Oh so thick and creamy. Smooth, slightly frothy. Pretty refreshing.

Drinkability - This porter at first went down really easy. But as it warmed a bit, it got worse and worse.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Smuttynose has delivered a truly "robust" porter with a black body and creamy orangeish tan head. The retention is quite good and it leaves some nice spots of lace about the glass. The nose expresses very dark cocoa, and a waft of espresso. In the mouth it's creamy and smooth with a medium body and fine-bubbled, moderate carbonation. The flavor is rich with dark, bittersweet chocolate; a berry-like and cherryish yeasty fruitiness; and some mild grassy & citrusy hops. It's backed by a solid bitterness, and it finishes bone dry with a mild, cold black coffee-like roastiness. Nicely done!

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Photo of PlowKing
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The first thing I noticed after pouring was the sweet aroma of the beer. I caught hints of vanilla and light cream. This robust porter reminds me more of a sweet stout (e.g. St. Peter's Cream Stout), in terms of taste and appearance. It had a slight milky sweetness, as if lactose was added, and none of the burnt, smoky flavours for such a dark beer.

It was a regular at the LCBO for quite some time, but has since been in absentia. Shame.

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Photo of Bleedingshrimp
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This baby pours an inch light brown head that sticks around for a bit. Lace paints the glass nicely and while it looks almost opaque, you can pick out a very deep and devious brown. The nose is light yet thick and woodsy, smells of bitter chocolate, grapefruits, and jet black coffee. Mouthfeel is medium and creamy. Taste is slightly sweet caramel coffee which immediately fights for mouthspace with the strong hops before finally giving in to their respective strengths and agreeing to disagree by striking a nice balance. It finishes with the hops having the final word and becoming a bully of an aftertaste...not too overwhelming though but quite enough to be considered "robust" and to make you chew on your own mouth for a bit. I could definitely down a sixer of these badboys no problem. Between this and Anchor porter for a mainstay in my fridge. Simply a great example of a porter.

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

Label is notched November.

Pours a nearly opaque dark brown/black color with a one-finger tan head. The only hints of translucency are around the edges.

Aroma is strong with coffee, cocoa and some nuttiness.

Coffee dominates the flavor. It is medium bodied yet dry with a crisp finish. Bitterness come at you from two directions- the hops and the abundance of roasted malt- yet it is not overdone. I wish I could say the same of the roasted malt acidity, which lingers in the finish -as well as a pleasant mocha quality. It's a good beer, though- just kind of, well, obvious.

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Photo of jamesclark
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Very dark, opaque both when pouring and in my pint glass. Lovely brown head, but it disappeared quickly.

Smells nice, caramel and coffee.

Medium carbonation, with tiny bubbles which play on my tongue. Nice rich flavor - somewhat sweet, chocolate, coffee-like. I'm reminded of espresso. There seems to be a good balance between the sweetness, the bitterness, and the identifiable aspects of the flavor. It doesn't feel thick. The flavor lingers after swallowing.

This is one of my many favorite beers - very drinkable, and very flavorful.

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Photo of TheDeuce
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Smuttynose Robust Porter....

Appearance-murky brown color, slight one finger head forms, dissapointing size but what is there stays with big bubbles forming through and through.

Smell-whiffs of chocolate cocoa, caramel malt, and slight bit of hop bite.

Taste-bitter chocolate through and through, huge influx of caramel roast flavor at the end and on the toungue though, quite flavorful.

Mouthfeel-flavor pulls through and through, bitter chocolate left on the toungue, not harsh just flavorful, very nice.

Drinkability-whoo man if you porters this is the one for you, flavorful and thorough without too much alcohol.

Overall-after a dissapointing start Smuttynose's porter proves that it is indeed "robust" quite flavorful and full of chocolate and caramel flavor without any harshness. Fine porter to have by your side anytime.

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Photo of Litterbean
4.12/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown, nearly impervious to light save a few illuminated red spots around the edges. Thin tan head, spotty lace.

The smell is, shall I say, ROBUST. Very potent, with whiffs of chocolate and coffee. Very warm smelling despite the coldness of the brew. Reminds me of a roaring fire even on this hot summer day.

Taste starts off slightly milky, with a cool creamy sensation then transitions to a slightly bittersweet chocolatey mocha cappucino profile. Very smooth on the intake, a thick bodied brew. Very satisfying and a delicious porter, ranking up there with my favorites Sierra Nevada and Samuel Smith.

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Photo of BuckSpin
3.93/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured an oily, slick opaque warm midnight ebony hue with an outrageous 2" agitated & lively head of tight tan foam that laced nicely. Nose was deep, rich, wisps of some fermentation and baking chocolate, smelled syrupy.

Wow, for a robust porter this is smooootthhhh. So soft & creamy, almost a bit thick on the tongue, very nice. Mild malt tones and subtle resonnences of chocolate swirl. It continues on the pallete until interrupted by a hop bite with a faint dark coffee echo. It swallows soft, like a whisper becoming an echo, subtly sweet, with some faint chocolate tones evolving into a coating of the throat & tongue, which is nice.

I don't know if Robust Porter is a play on words, but this was one soft, subtle porter. It slid down so easy & nice, love the creamy aspect of it. This is a keeper. Not as flavorful as others, but certainly welcome in my glass again. This could be a great porter to introduce someone to porters with.

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Photo of Naes
4.95/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Ahh, the robust porter, one of my favorite beers.

It has a bold black appearance, with a milk chocolate colored head which stays around and clings to the glass. So dark in color, that it is almost impenetrable to light.

This beer has a semi-sweet malt aroma, with hints of roastiness that lets you know that you are in for a treat.

The flavor is a roasty malt, with a nice balance of hops. The after taste includes hints of chocolate and coffee.

So creamy and rich, you could almost chew this brew. It has a thick mouth feel that lingers on the palate, yet drinkable enough to have a few more.

5.7% ABV and delicious.

After trying countless numbers of porters from around the world, I think that this is one of the best.

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Photo of Dithyramb
3.9/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Part of a 12 pack purchased at Beltway Fine Wines just the other day. This one was stamped March 2005 on the exterior box and had March notched on the label. Nice photo, on their website there is some background info concerning how it was made.

Pours ink black, just about opaque. By holding it up to the light, just a bit of ruby highlights can be seen, but not much. Thick dark tan head erupted to 2.5 finger height. Excellent retention with lacing throughout.

Roasted coffee and ripe fruit aromas

Flavor was initially coffee, but there was a semisweet chocolate backbone to it. Slightly bitter baking chocolate flavors too. However, they just seemed downplayed a bit.

Missing some body, was light to medium bodied. Lacked a strong finish, but this did allow the brew to finish clean.

Pretty drinkable and not bad in many categories, just not as robust as the name implies. Would like to see this suped up in their Big A series, though.

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

12 FL. OZ.
Brewed & Bottled in November

Appearance – mostly black body; early mammoth, pillowy mocha head that has little retention; lace is reasonable but nothing to write home about

Smell – big smack of dark malts; lingering grapefruity hops were a pleasant surprise

Taste – dark chocolate; smoky; grapefruit; bit coffee-like; grapefruit remains through a mostly charred and wild close; the overall package is exciting

Mouthfeel – bigger feel than most porters of this size; bit of a hop tinge to close; somewhat dry on close

Drinkability – the flavor/feel package is certainly nothing like I’ve had before; the flow is pleasant

The char & grapefruit remain in my mouth for minutes afterward. Different. Thought stimulating. If you like something different in the porter family that throws a curve at your tongue, give it a rip. There will be a return trip. Thankfully there are 5 more in the fridge.

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Photo of thinkbreakfast
4.57/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

App: Dark tan, thick looking head. Fades to patchy chunks of foam which stick to the sides of the glass.

Smell: This brew has the trademark chocolate/coffee smell of any porter. What sets this one apart, however, is the undeniable undertones of hops. For some reason I really enjoyed this. Hops are usually the last thing that comes to mind with a beer like this.

Taste: Starts sweet, then a fleeting glimpse of the hops mentioned above. The hop bitterness fades into a dark chocolate bitterness. After the swallow, a deep, dark coffee taste lingers.

The mouthfeel is a tiny bit on the thin side. But the bitterness of the aftertaste leaves a nice chalky feeling.

A very enjoyable liquid.

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Photo of clvand0
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a very dark color with a small head that falls fast and leaves a little lacing on the glass. The aroma is very roasty with just a hint of chocolate and very low in the hops. The flavor is much the same, with a huge roasted character and small hints of chocolate. The mouthfeel is thick and the drinkability is great. This is very well done and extremely enjoyable.

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Photo of kmpitz2
4.6/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This brew departs the bottle a nice black color with a small head that falls to coathe the beer with a mice tan foam. The nose is really nice, with chocoalte and nice roasty malts being full and forward. I really like it. The flavor is just as nice. Huge roasty notes assault me. Not coffee, but nice roasted malrts. There is a bit of chocolate on the finish. I like it. The feel is big and thick, slight creamyness as well. Well balanced, good flavor..just a damn fine brew. This is one of the better porters I have had. Its right on par with the one from the Great Dane last weekend.

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Smuttynose Robust Porter from Smuttynose Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,052 ratings.