Penn Quarter Porter - DC Brau Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Penn Quarter PorterPenn Quarter Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

495 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 495
Reviews: 106
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 11.4%
Wants: 14
Gots: 45 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
DC Brau Brewing Co. visit their website
District of Columbia, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: starrdogg on 05-12-2011

Penn Quarter Porter is our first in a line of draft-only limited-release beer, and it's a robust porter! In the way that The Public is on the line between a pale ale and an IPA, this is on the line between a porter and a stout - with chocolate notes and a dry, roasted finish.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 495 | Reviews: 106
Photo of hagbergl
4.01/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance (4/5): A tightly bubbled head of two fingers sits atop a jet black body. Good retention. I particularly like the dark tan color of the head. Just an outstanding looking porter.

Smell (4.25/5): Roasted malt, dark chocolate and black coffee notes really dominate. This is quite a rich and intense-smelling porter, especially one that is fairly low in ABV. Perhaps the richest one I've ever smelled. I'm impressed, for sure.

Taste (4/5): Wow! Dark chocolate and light espresso flavors dominate. The roasted note doesn't stand out quite as much in the taste. Nice and rich and robust. A hoppier porter than most–the hop bite comes on late. You get a nice herbal/piney hit of moderate bitterness at the very end that combines really well with the roasted malts and bitter coffee flavor.

Mouthfeel (3.5/5): The mouthfeel unfortunately does not quite live up to the higher standards set by the aroma and flavor. It has a nice dry and roasty finish, but the body on the beer is thin. I would have liked a creamier feel than I'm getting here. I understand that it's a Robust Porter and not an Imperial Porter or Stout, so I cannot dock too many points. But placed side by side with Great Lakes' Edmund Fitzgerald, it's clear that the mouthfeel could be better.

Overall (4/5): DC Brau Penn Quarter Porter is a solid beer and a good example of the American Porter style. It features intense chocolate and black coffee notes in the aroma and taste and a more aggressive hop profile than most Porters I've had. The only drawback here is the mouthfeel, which I thought was too thin, unfortunately. Still, it's a good beer worth a try.

Photo of Jeffreysan
4.75/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

12 oz can poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours pitch black, completely opaque, with 3 full fingers of chocolate/caramel colored head that lasted for quite a while before dissolving into a thin lacing of foam that completely covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Massive aromas of dark chocolate and coffee. Some subtle notes of freshly baked dark bread, but it’s almost completely overpowered by the coffee and dark chocolate. Slight caramel and burnt sugar notes too.

Taste: Like the aroma, the predominate flavors of this beer are dark chocolate and coffee. Actually there’s a lot of coffee flavor in this beer, bur surprisingly, and thankfully, none of the coffee bitterness. The beer finishes with the dark chocolate and some mild sweetness. Some slight tobacco flavors too. Delicious!

Mouthfeel: Medium-thick and creamy. Chewy. Coats the mouth well!

Overall: Goddamn, this is an AWESOME Porter!! I really enjoy the roastiness that this beer has, and the wonderful balance between the coffee and the chocolate. One of the best porters I’ve ever had!

Photo of cleve00
4.52/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Porter? Stout?

Appearance: Poured Dark Brown/Black with a creamy 3 finger beige head that lingered for a few minutes.

Smell: Heavy odor of long roasted coffee with some maltiness. Nothing offensive at all.

(I am a RIS lover and the taste is great for me.) Taste is just like the smell nuff said, so I loved the smell. Medium body and carbonation, I did not find this thin but rather hearty for what it was. Bitterness was appropriate and pleasant. Dry finish

Solid! I wish this was not limited. Thanks DC Brau!

Photo of MCain04
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thanks for the extra, dave_treat. Can poured into my perfect pint sam adams glass.

looks dark brown/black with a mocha head, good retention and great lacing

smells of chocolate, coffee, toasted bread, roasted nuts, raisins

Taste is kind of thin, but bitter coffee and roasted malts dominate, a little dark chocolate, bitter hops.

Mouth is thin for a robust porter, and carbonation is a bit high, medium body. Faily dry finish.

Overall, a decent porter that I enjoyed, but there are a several better options in my back yard that I'd turn to first.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.74/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

In commemoration of a dark, mysterious and sinister occurrence, the death place of President Lincoln became the inspiration for an ale that speaks much the same language.

As prescribed, the ale is dark, nearly black but halts with deep brown hue and modest tawny highlights. A cap of mocha-stained mousse builds atop the ale and retains stubbornly and laces with isolated islands along the way. Its a very sturdy looking beer.

Bold aromas of heavy toast, charred wood, malted milk, and cocoa give a robust scent from the perspective of malted barley. A woodish note provide sight hop balance to the malt, along with a mild roasty twang that might hinge on tart berry scent.

Tasting similar, the Robust Porter greets the front of the mouth with burnt toffee sweetness, just ahead of light char, toast, strong coffee and bittersweet chocolate. Roasted walnuts and burnt pine gives the ale balance and intrigue. Heavy whipping cream provides fuller and milkshake taste in the middle taste before slipping into coffee-like bitterness to finish. Mild alcohol flavor extends with a taste of grape and berry in the distance.

Medium-full on the mouth- its carbonated sweetness provides a fully engulfed creaminess. But the sweetness quickly dissolves and the ample carbonation drives the roast and toast into a firm dryness. Mild alcohol warmth and slight roast-derived astringency closes the beer with pleasant spice and bite.

When thinking about what beer would best commemorate the life and tragedy that is Abraham Lincoln, I think that the Robust Porter makes perfect sense. It's tall, confident, and stately from sip 'til finish.

Photo of vandemonian
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

DC Brau Penn Quarter Porter is a tasty and very strong-flavoured porter. It's loaded with roasty, bitter, coffee flavour.

A: Black colour and a 3 mm head that fades to nothing much. 4

S: Malty with a hint of coffee. 4

T: Malty with the strong flavour of roasty, bitter coffee. The finish is dry and clean. 4

M: Big and foamy. 4.5

O: 4

Photo of Beer-A-Lot
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Excellent porter with lots of coffee and chocolate. Nice robust taste, yet a very easy drinking and smooth beer. Not thin at all. Almost stout-like in its feel. My favorite beer so far from DC Brau, although I haven't yet had Armageddon. This is a fine, go-to session beer. Very solid.

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Can shared by jayhawk73. Thanks Jeff.

The beer appears dark coffee brown with a quarter inch of oily tan head. The aroma brings dark roast, malt, coffee, chocolate. Smells nice. Great flavor. What a solid beer. Medium bodied with appropriate carbonation. Good stuff.

Photo of damngoode
1.94/5  rDev -49.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 1.5

An infected bottle, I'm afraid, as an extra from a great trader, siege06nd. Left a beautiful head lounging in the tulip for a good 5 minutes before creeping back down into the glass. At least I know definitively what an infected beer tastes like. Old penny, sour - but not a good sour, a bad hiccup stomach bile sour. Really tough to even get some of the good notes out of the beer the acid was so intense. Sad to see it go, but down the drain it must.

Photo of KYGunner
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

For a Porter around 5 pct ABV this brew looks viscously thick and pours a radiant opal hue. The head is thick and rose a centimeter above the edge of the snifter with a brown cohesive crown.

Malty dry chocolate and Graham cracker fill the nose with a marshmallow finish. Perhaps a little coffee char sits near the end.

The taste has strong roasted coffee notes coupled with dry chocolate malt. Touches of Graham cracker and bits of char round out a very nice flavor.

I had read that this was very watery but instead find it nicely smooth, not particularly viscous, but so easy to drink for a porter with such strong tastes.

Photo of farrago
4.21/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

About a finger plus of dark brown foam, mostly dense and tiny bubbles and quick to dissipate evenly across the surface, the lacing actually has better stickiness than expected, thin but wide splotches. The liquid is just about black or at least the darkest shade of brown, impenetrable like a stout, hard to gauge the bubble activity within the glass. Rich and densely packed nose of dark chocolate, coffee, malt and caramel, black cherry and plum fruit scents, touch of bracing quinine and iron flecks, clean on the whole, sufficient roast that it doesn’t seem overly sweet, again very good fullness and length. In the mouth it is full-bodied as well with an overall dry texture. This accentuates the earthiness which at times has a volcanic soil aspect, metallic. Here too it seems herbaceous but not necessarily in a hoppy manner. The chocolate, mocha, coffee has a good toast to it, not as dominant. Hits you with a burst of something like Cherry Coke. The carbonation is not obtrusive while churning at a steady rate. Vague praline like nuttiness. Presents moderate complexity while taking pains to cover all the basics of the type. Decent drinkability too. Nothing to quibble over.

Photo of Amalak
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A. It is basically black with a solid tan head and a bit of lacing that it leaves behind.

S. There's a sweetness there, a bit of malt, some metallic scent.

T/M. It has something of a burnt ash tray taste, but I mean that in a loving way. Nice and burnt. It is hoppy. It is full bodied.

O. There's a pleasant burnt taste, almost a pumpkin undertone. A hint of grass, but mostly a metallic taste.

Photo of stakem
4.2/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Kegatron for the hookup on this. 12oz can into a standard pint glass. The brew pours black in color with a rich brown froth more than 2 fingers strong that fades leaving a wall of patchy lace.

The aroma is roasted and earthen with suggestions of coffee and slight citrus elements. A trace amount of mineral character is present along with a mild tingle of alcohol. All in all a fine smelling porter.

The flavor is roasted like coffee and bitter cocoa combined. Some earthen elements, minerals and slight citrus hop inclusion brighten things up a bit. A note of fruity alcohol blends into a mild anise and almost a hint of root beer or cola towards the finish. While the later character is strange, it is subtle enough to not distract.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. Quite a tight, nearly flawless delivery here of a robust porter. Lots of flavor to enjoy and an abv tame enough that you can throw a few back quite effortlessly. Thank you for this Heath, it was tasty.

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I don't know if this is past its prime, but it seems a little thin. It says it ages well, but at 5.5% I would have to doubt that. Nice character on it. Almost seems English in its interpretation. Fairly smooth feel. Easy drinker. Nice enough. Glad to try something from DC Brau, but will look forward to trying their cans more so than this.

Photo of jlindros
2.76/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.5

Split with rudzud as he mentioned. Bottled in 2012

Pours a dark mocha color fizzy head that hits a finger and fades pretty quickly, little lacing, pitch black color.

Nose is bad, probably infected, sour malt, sour fruit, faint roast and dark malt, little caramel, but mostly like a sour cherry.

Taste starts soured, infection soured, some light porter flavors with light roast and caramel, light acrid, creamy dark porter, light cocoa, but mostly sour cherry and soured malts. Fairly acidic too and tart. Finish the sour flavors at least die off, and its bready biscuit caramel with light roast char and cocoa lingering. The finish mostly gives glimpses into what the beer should have been, without the sourness.

Mouth is med to fuller bodied, nice carb at least.

Overall it seems like it would be pretty good of not infected. But undrinkable and pretty bad with the sour infection.

Photo of rudzud
2.81/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.25

Split with JLindros. I got this in a box a while back as a thank you for sending a trading partner a case of heady topper for a wedding peresent.

A - poured a nice black hue with a thin mocha head that fades to leave a thin blanket.

S - Gaahhhh that's infection. Damnit. Sour chocolate cherry....hints at what would have been a decent beer.

T - Taste is burnt malts, acidic sour cherries....ugh. just not good at all. Flashes of chocolate. But really meh.

M - Mouthfeel is lightly carbonated and not bad.

O - Overall this beer was decent enough but ugh....infected.

Photo of cosmicevan
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

big thanks to portable for this treat. enjoyed from a dc brau can glass.

bottle from 2012

a - brew poured watery black with an insane head that filled about half the glass. the head was frothy and foamy and a deep tan if not creamy brown. really thick and frothy. looked like a milkshake. the head hung out forever and left chunky lacing in the few spots that it dissolved.

s - robust roasted malt. has a crispness and a char to it, but more of a milky thing than a charcoal char. really pleasing.

t - very soft. roasted black malt. stale coffee. soft bitter bakers chocolate on the finish. cooling.

m - crisp and easy drinker. brisk. almost milk stout, but with a char.

o - overall a really nice porter. very classic and tasty. good char without being too much and nice subtle chocolate notes.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.6/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. can poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Very dark, but transparent at the edges. Nice khaki head. Retains a thick collar and nice surface wisps.

Smell - Very roasty. Almost smokey. Some vanilla. Nice.

Taste - Still very roasty. Bitter chocolate and some smoke. Carbonation takes over and masks a lot of the flavors. Bitter finish.

Mouthfeel - Highly carbonated. Lingering chocolate finish.

Overall - Pretty good and very flavorful for its size.

Photo of 1up
3.86/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A- Gorgeous deep opaque dark brown with a light brown, moderate sized head. Not much lacing which makes sense given the small head size.

S- At first I get roasty mild coffee grounds, ever so slight chocolate. Later it turns into horse barn or hamster cage. Not sure what happened.

T- Charred, roasty, refreshing, somewhat astringent, a bit sweet at the beginning and finishes dry like a good dark chocolate bar.

M- Moderate thickness, small bubbled carbonation, carbonation feels right.

O- This was surprisingly much better than I was expecting. I like DC Brau's OTWOA but I'm not a huge fan of their other beers. This was one of the better ones I tried.

Photo of blackie
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: pqp is a deep, opaque mahogany brown in color, floating a thick, crema colored head with great retention and lacing

s: a complex roast-centric nose featuring earthy, deeply roasted barley, dark cocoa, charred wood, and coffee; earthy and deep, really like this

m: carbonation just under moderate, body medium-full, creamy and smooth mouthfeel

t: a bold, richly flavored porter - big roasts, cocoa, and dark coffee all make an appearance, some caramelized sugars underneath dark chocolate and roasted barley to start give way to drier, more charred flavors midway, finishing with a burnt earthiness and clean bitter

o: a top notch porter - lots of varied roasted characters that come together to form a creamy and well-balanced beer; huge flavor for a low-moderate abv porter, and drinks well as a result

Photo of RonfromJersey
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bomber from Liquor Outlet.

Brown out of the bottle, in the glass its Pitch black with the thinnest of ruby red line around he bottom of the glass. Six fingers of light tan very rocky foam. Good ripping lace.

Deep roast coffee aroma. Hints of chocolate and nuts.

Taste finds the coffee's rough dark roast edge smooth out by rich dark chocolate.

Very good mouthfeel. Thick, rich, syrupy.

A well done porter, recommended.

Photo of scottfrie
2.24/5  rDev -42%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.75

22oz bottle into NB snifter. Thank jbck109.

A: Popped the cap and poured a glass full of foam. Huge reactive, foamy and soft light brown head, filled the glass. Creamy looking. Infected looking… Crazy retention, great sheets of lace.
S: Mild roasted, coffee, licorice, dark roasted grains, and something slightly sour. Uh oh.
T: All kinds of infected. Sour fruits up front with hints of the “normal” roasted porter flavors poking through. Aftertaste is bitter and then sour, almost like a warhead candy mixed with citrus rind. Pretty awful to be honest.
M: Foamy, sour, medium body.
O: Very disappointing that I got a bad bottle as I’ve heard good things about this brewery and was looking forward to try this beer. I can tell by the flavors that do poke through the infection that this would have been a great brew. This infection was worse than 09 Abyss. Undrinkable. Thanks for trying though, Jay. Sad to see I'm not the only one with a bad bottle. Cheers.

Photo of msubulldog25
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, gifted by a friend - who'd received it from a different friend upon her return from the DC-area last fall. Split to two pints with my wife yesterday afternoon.

Limited Release Robust Porter
Bottled in 2012, 5.5% abv.
'Vertical/Ages Well' wasn't something I expected on this relatively low-alcohol porter, but there it is, right beneath 'Penn Quarter Facts' (which are: Penn Quarter is most famous for Ford's Theatre, where President Abraham Lincoln's coat and hat can still be seen to this day.).

A: Very dark pour, nearly black - hardly a trace of light breaking through. A gigantic khaki head (almost 4 fingers) led me to suspect this as a little 'old' or 'off' - soooo much carbonation. But the fizzing foam stabilized, turned creamy, held nicely. Lacing was pretty gorgeous as a result, twinkling bands of cobwebs.

S: Nothing too 'off' in the scent - it's malted milk balls, cocoa powder, mild coffee. There's just a touch of fruity sourness, light & berry-like. Strength is appropriate.

T: Chewy chocolate fudge with "coffee & cream" undertones. A very slight tartness (hints of apple) give a little tangs. Finish seems dark, bitter, sorta ashy... but then surprises with some vanilla sweetness in flashes. Pretty interesting.

M: Steady, lively carbonation, a 'crisper' porter in the mouth. Once effervescence wanes, the feel thickens, a strengthening 'medium' weight with good coating and lasting dark chocolate bitter/sweetness.

O: Quite nice, we both liked it well enough and finished (too?) quickly. Would have preferred a little smoother carbonation, but I guess it's better than too little/dead mouthfeel. It'd be interesting to try this as part of a Vertical, but frankly I wouldn't wait on the 2012 too much longer. Only my second time tasting something from DC Brau - good work, y'all!

Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Side of the bottle "Penn Quarter Facts: Penn Quarter is Most Famous for Ford's Theater. Where President Abraham Lincoln's Coat and hat can still bee seen to this day." I've actually visited and it's pretty amazing how much history that tour has to offer, totally worth the visit if you're in to history.

22 oz. bomber poured into the lager version of the Sam Adams perfect pint glass. A nice hard pour has the liquid coming out close to black in color, but has some deep mahogany highlights. Nice coffee with a small amount of cream brown colored head that erupts pretty high, but has mostly small bubbles to it. Better than average lacing on this one.

Smell is very good, SUPER roasty. One of the more robust porters of this low ABV that I've had the pleasure of sniffing out. Lots of coffee with some mild chocolate, but an additional sweetness I can't quite put my finger on.

Taste is equally as excellent, and big for just a 5.5 ABV. Again, super roasty. Coffee flavors arn't as strong as the smell, but plenty present, sort of mixed with a fudgy chocolate without being too rich and decadent. In the back there is sort of a very weak creamy vanilla flavor that's not too strong, but it's present, maybe that's the sweetness I couldn't pick up in the smell.

Mouthfeel is really good. It's big and heavy, sort of like an imperial stout, but not so strong. Has all the strong roasty and flavorful. Smooth, rich (but not too rich), and slightly silky feel with a good carbonation level. Nice finish and super drinkable, very easy drinking porter. I think I'd rather see this in six packs though. This bomber was a nice treat, but I could see how it could get a little old and wouldn't mind having a bottle (or can) on my own that wasn't a bomber. Great beer, have one more bottle that I'll be cellaring.

Photo of WillCarrera
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle, bottled in 2012, poured into a pint glass.

A- Pours black with a thin khaki head, leaves spotty lacing.

S- Roast, coffee, chocolate and dark fruit, nice aroma overall.

T- Roasted, smoky grain, milk chocolate, some chocolate and fruity sweetness towards the end, which is dry and bitter.

M- Medium-bodied, smooth, creamy feel with a dry, roasted finish.

O- A solid porter, very drinkable and balanced.

Penn Quarter Porter from DC Brau Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 495 ratings.