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Anchor Porter - Anchor Brewing Company

Anchor PorterAnchor Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,719 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2719
Reviews: 1411
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 11.19%

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-01-2001)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,719 | Reviews: 1,411 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Henrich


4.14/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours with 1 finger of creamy, tan foam, which slowly melts into 1 cm of decent surface head. Beer is an opaque black, with no visable carbonation.
Smell: Malty, caramel, sweet. Like sniffing a bucket of brown sugar. Pleasant, but damn sweet.
Taste: Sweet, but toasty. From the smell, I was anticipating the taste to be totally cloying, but it is rather dry, with a nice, slight chocolate and strong aftertaste of coffee and malt. Very complex, and a nice surprise.
Mouth-Feel: A slight carbonic bite when it enters the mouth, but quickly yeilding to syrupy thick. Nothing special.
Overall: This is solid. I didn't expect much, but was delighted by the complex taste. This is a sipper, one per evening should satisfy. Well done.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2014 03:46:55 | More by Henrich
Photo of MarkoNm


3.43/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Pours a very beautiful deep black color and is covered wit ha decent tan colored head that stays around for some time.
The aroma is slighty roasted, some fruits also present.
The taste starts with a nice bitterness and is followed by slightly roasted body, lots of coffee. Finishes with a decent bitterness.
Not my favourite Anchor, but very nice nad easily enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

04-12-2014 12:02:49 | More by MarkoNm
Photo of mfnmbvp


3.93/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, with code on the back label BNF it appears. A new beer to me from Anchor Brewing Co., acquired as part of a mixed six pack at the local Binny's. Expectations are good based on this beer's high praise.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter.

A - Pours a dark woodsy brown; opaque black in the glass with just a hint of mahogany showing near the edges.Four big fluffy fingers of creamy chocolate mocha head. Leaves behind nice rings of fluffy lace. Looks very nice.

S - Smell is of barley roast, notes of chocolate / coffee, earthy yeast, brown bread, oatmeal / caramel malt character, and lots of vinous dark fruit character - cherries, figs, plums, dates.

T - Taste follows the nose - barley roast, brown bread, molasses, cola, notes of chocolate / caramel malt, and maybe just a hint of indistinct spicing present, but I could be imagining it. I think it's really there, however.

M - Feel is smooth and creamy. Silky and chocolately. Medium bodied with good carbonation. Roasty and bitter on the finish.

Overall, a very well-made porter, and it definitely carries on that Anchor vibe very well. An iconic example of a porter, and deservedly so, but I still don't think it holds up when compared to beers like Founders Porter. Recommended; I would have it again.

Anchor Porter ---4/5.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2014 17:01:11 | More by mfnmbvp
Photo of fscottkey

New York

3.33/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A: Pours dark black with a 2 1/2 finger slightly tan head. The head recedes - but not uniformly leaving some gaps. It also leaves nice lacing on the glass.

S: Very strange. I am getting very little on the nose. Giving it more time to warm.

T: Sweet notes of caramel up front. If I was blind taste testing and someone said there was a caramel porter in the mix I would say it was this one. Slight dry and bitter coffee - but mainly caramel.

M: Slightly more carbonation than I expected. This cut down a little on what would have been a smoother porter.

O: I was surprised by this one. I expected roasty malts, chocolate and coffee - but mainly hit sweet notes. I was confused by the smell and the taste. Not bad but just seemed out of character.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2014 02:20:08 | More by fscottkey
Photo of abeeronthebeach


3.76/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A - Pours a satisfyingly deep, dark brown with a smooth tan head.

S - Roasty, accompanied by an unappealing cleaning product odour. Dark fruit as well. Vinous. Pinot Noir.

T - Classic coffee, malt, and roasty toasty flavours are not super bold but are present. VInous character is evident again.

M - Smooth and creamy.

O - I like porters, but this is not my favourite represenative; for me the cleaning product and pinot noir aromas and flavours didn't gel naturally with the other flavours which are more common for the style.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2014 04:55:55 | More by abeeronthebeach
Photo of Emnmarko


3.71/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A- Light finds it hard to penetrate, and only does at the edges of my glass where a red hue is visible. A nice thick creamy caramel colored two+ finger head squats on this beer like a homeless drug addict in an abandoned house in Detroit. A considerable amount of lacing is the result.

S- Typical porter aromas, chocolate, coffee from the roasted malts. Something going on with the hops here I can't put my finger on. I hope it resolves itself in the flavor.

T- Ok here we go this is better. You get the chocolates and the coffee but its muted. A bready flavor with smoke. Interesting.

M- Light and drinkable per style. Clean no lingering aftertaste.

O- A solid brew. In my opinion it feels like a brown ale/porter hybrid. There are better porters but a have to say I like it. Its got an advantage in the drinkability aspect for sure but, does it? I like the creamy texture of a "typical" porter. I don't know, loses character points but gains for originality. I'm confused. I think I need another beer. Cheers.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2014 02:09:05 | More by Emnmarko
Photo of titty_mcbitty


4.4/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark black and a tan head. Nice looking porter!

S: Chocolate, nutty bread, and some yeast.

T: This is so similar to an English-style porter, and it's great. Chocolate is first, then caramel, then some of that yeasty, nutty bread. Also, some slight sour funk, sweet toffee, and raisin.

M: Thin, but on the heavier side. It actually isn't bad for this beer- it works well.

O: An awesome porter. Anchor isn't over doing anything in this beer, and they are certainly not under doing it either. It's a very pleasant porter and I highly recommend it.

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2014 01:56:36 | More by titty_mcbitty
Photo of safaricook


4.05/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks great as it pours effortlessly a huge fine beige head that sits above a clear black liquid. A layer of a few mm head last during the entire session and can be revived anytime. Lacing as well. Perfect!

aroma is of roasted malt but of the gently kind, milk chocolate comes to mind rather than coffee. When the head is still high I have a harsh metallic not, but as it slowly dies down this is gone. Vanilla even. hint of alcohol.

Taste is surprisingly yeasty, but of course also roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, noticeable but restrained bitterness, sweet first later more refreshing sourness

Nice almost creamy mouthfeel but carbonation is strong enough to keep it refreshing. medium.

This is definitely a world class Stout or Porter. This style is not extravagant but pleases and is very drinkable especially in the colder month of the year - SF fog comes to mind...

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2014 16:58:07 | More by safaricook
Photo of jimbuck


4.46/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

the head was approx.3" after pouring.very nice color,very dark and nearly opaque.it had an aroma of honey,a little brown sugar am coffee.it had a medium to full body,somewhat lighter than the founders porter.drank it at approx. 45 degrees.the taste was exactly as the aroma,very well integrated.as it warmed up ,it took a noticeably heavier note,but very smooth.highly recommend.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2014 21:58:10 | More by jimbuck
Photo of jrenihan

Ontario (Canada)

3.85/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Beer is black with a very small tan head. Head fades quickly.

Roasted malt, caramel, toffee in the nose.

Flavour contains caramel, roasted malt, anise and a bit of a hop flavour. A bit of coffee. Sweeter than expected, but there is a bitter aftertaste. Good, but it is sweeter and weaker than expected.

Medium bodied, moderately carbonated. Sticky.

Overall? I don't get the love for this one. Not bad, but certainly not up to the standards I was expecting. Put me in the "disappointed" camp for this beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2014 02:21:43 | More by jrenihan
Photo of samtrillo


4.25/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Like iced coffe. Yum

S - Not a lot there but subtle cream and coffee. Yum.

T - Mocha, bitter dark chocolate. A great deal of flavor but not over powering. Could drink a lot of this.Yum.

M - Really nice and pretty smooth but still a good amount of carbonation.

O - Awesome, definitely going to get more of this when I need a stout fix. Check it out! YUMM

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2014 05:54:44 | More by samtrillo
Photo of Zdrummer15


4.21/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle to a pint glass.

Appearance: dark black, almost opaque, with a tan 1 finger head. Great retention and lacing

Smell: moslty roasted malts, specifically dark chocolate and coffee. No surprises here

Taste: pretty damn good. Matches the smell. Some bitterness up front with a nice coffee aftertaste

Mouth feel: fairly carbonated with just the right amount of bite. Goes down easy

Overall: a very good porter. It doesn't top Founder's Porter or Great Lakes Edmond Fitzgerald to me, but otherwise, it's about as good as they come. Very true to the style and I would certainly drink it again

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2014 07:26:55 | More by Zdrummer15
Photo of kindacold


3.85/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.75

From the bottle it pours a deep red that nears black with a thick tan head. Mild roasted smell, but disappointingly mild. Very light feeling with fine carbonation. Roasted grains, a bit of coffee, and a hint of chocolate with a good malt/hop balance. Finishes dry and very clean.

Serving type: bottle

02-12-2014 16:54:11 | More by kindacold
Photo of alexrichman


4.03/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A> Pours the color of motor oil and left about 1/2 finger of a khaki-colored head. Moderate to light lacing.

S> So much going on in the aroma, but I get mostly sweet, dark malt with hints of dark fruits, wood, vanilla, marshmallow, and chocolate. An impressive, strong, and inviting smell.

T> A lot of the same flavors from the aroma but on the tongue the malt takes on qualities of coffee and tobacco, lots of sweetness but finishes with a nice, dark, slightly bitter finish. The finish on this beer is truly wonderful.

M> Good carbonation but a little bit thin, although not inappropriate for the style. Very drinkable.

O> A porter that is highly drinkable while also being incredibly interesting and complex. Truly a benchmark for the style.

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2014 23:30:37 | More by alexrichman
Photo of illpass78


4.46/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a solid black with a brown head. Head starts at about an inch and a half and gradually recedes. Lacing is moderate to heavy.

Aroma: Smells of black coffee and dark chocolate. The nose doesn't jump out at you, but it's there. Smells inviting.

Taste: Tastes like a perfect porter. Lots of black coffee and dark chocolate with good hop presence. Some bitterness from hops. The finish is perfect - each sip leaves you wanting more. Ideal porter.

Mouthfeel: Solid body. Not watery, not sludgy thick either.

Overall: It's a measuring stick for American porters. Hits all the right notes. If Anchor's iconic beer wasn't Anchor Steam, it would be this.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2014 01:50:21 | More by illpass78
Photo of Flounder57


4.01/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle was poured into a tulip.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger mocha head that reduced to a thin puffy layer. It is a pitch black color with no clarity or vision of bubbles coming up through the glass. Spotty mocha lacing down the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: Typical stale aroma, roasty, chocolate, a little smoke, and some toffee and caramel.

Taste: Stale ale taste, ash, smoke, burnt molasses, roasty, chocolate, toffee, and caramel

Mouthfeel: Smooth, medium bodied, low to medium carbonation, and a little mild bitterness.

Overall: This porter got better as time went on. More things were noticeable as it warmed up. I can see myself enjoying more of these in the future.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2014 00:03:15 | More by Flounder57
Photo of ranger7


3.84/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into tumbler.

A: Pitch black with small off-white head.

S: Chocolate, sweet, malt with a hint of toast.

T: Sweet and toasty, slight bitterness from the toast. Interesting.

M: Little carbonation, medium-to-light mouthfeel.

Overall: A pretty good Porter.

Serving type: bottle

01-12-2014 13:54:38 | More by ranger7
Photo of donkeyrunner


3.53/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Dark brown pour sits black in my glass. Dark, wet sand colored head. Smells like roasty chocolate cocoa powder. Roast malt dominates the flavor but it also has a savory meat char in back that I really like.

One of those nothing fancy but solid throughout, buy it everywhere underappreciated beers. Underappreciated by me at least.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2014 00:20:23 | More by donkeyrunner
Photo of Retroman40


3.6/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours out a very dark almost black color with a strong brown tinted head that last throughout and clings to the glass. It looks very good in the glass.

S - Roasted malt with hints of both chocolate and coffee.

T - Almost burnt malt flavor with coffee/chocolate.

M - Very rich with good carbonation balancing the malt and other flavors

O - Overall a decent enough Porter but the ABV a little on the high side for a session beer. I'm a little surprised by the super high ratings since while this is a very good beer, personally I don't think it rises to great.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2013 11:12:27 | More by Retroman40
Photo of bskrtz


4.25/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 ounce bottle served at 40 degrees, in pint beer glass

A) Carbonated black coffee with frothy off white head. Opaque, no light passes through, even when held to a light

S) Toasted almonds, licorice, mild esters, root beer

T) Flavorful and very inviting. Similar to Stout -- I really cant tell the difference. Dark bitter chocolate, espresso, toffee caramel. It's all there and it's quite delicious

M) Creamy, thick, well carbonated

O) Excellent example of classic English Porter. As mentioned, I cannot discern the difference between stronger porters and stouts. Never the less I like them both.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2013 03:22:20 | More by bskrtz
Photo of delta490


3.81/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A- poured a deep dark black with a creamy tan head. Great head retention and nice lacing

S- aroma is pretty robust with notes of coffee and licorice and alcohol esters

T- the taste doesn't quite match up with the aroma but there is a deep roasted malt flavor and a little hops bitterness

M- there is a little carbonation fizz on the tongue but is overall fairly smooth

O- a good but not overawing porter

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2013 19:15:27 | More by delta490
Photo of SteveB24

New York

4.11/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

hosted a party and one of the items i bought at the beer store was an anchor variety pack. this was included.

appearance; very dark brown, slightly cloudy, mild carbonation, thin head that settles to reasonable lacing.

smell; very enticing; coffee , chocolate, pear, a little bit of pumpernickle bread.

taste; similar smell, which is always a plus for me, light coffee initially, the fruit and bread is definitely there, the chocolate is absent in the taste.

mouthfeel; medium/ high carbonation, medium body with a slightly dry finish.

overall; not the most memorable of beers and is a bit too subtle for its own good, but is still tasty and very drinkable. definitely not a bad choice if you are looking for this particular style.

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2013 04:54:39 | More by SteveB24
Photo of ahommell


4.41/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark brown. Head is equally creamy dark. 1 finger head. Lacing or legs are ample.

S: Apple. Pear. Plum. Dark Fruits. Very light spices.

T: Similar to smell. Apple is the base. Dark fruits, chocolate, and nutty flavor sprinkle themselves in.

M: Smooth. Medium bodied. perfect for my taste. There is a good balance between beverage and meal in this porter.

O: The best of the Anchors. Honestly. It puts all of Anchor's beers into one great package.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2013 04:02:37 | More by ahommell
Photo of Morakaton


4.24/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Tonight, Morakaton will examine Anchor Porter from the Anchor Brewing Company!

For starters, I will admit that this was not a drink I was super fond of after my first bottle. I kept wanting to compare it to Founders Porter, but I now realize that's like comparing apples to oranges. Whereas Founders Porter relies on roast and chocolate to form its character, Anchor Porter uses more dark fruit, something I can really appreciate since it is done damn well compared to most other year round Porters.

I poured a 12 oz bottle into a tulip glass, which poured a nice black that wasn't too dark. A nice foamy head that was about 3/4 as thick as my large fingers formed that slowly dissipated into a thick ring that persisted until I finished the beer. The beer wasn't super out of the ordinary looking, but did have a nice carbonation going on that gave it some personality in the glass. Overall, pretty decent looking.

It smells primarily of of dark fruits, such as raisins and figs, but also had a some biscuity malts, brown sugar, and a hint of chocolate. In the taste, the fruits are the main attraction I find, and the sugar and chocolate malts play second fiddle and show more prominently in the finish. The beer is moderately carbonated and has a low hop profile, making it pretty nice drinking. Also too, the ABV is quite low for an American Porter at 5.6%, and as expected, isn't detected in the drink (atleast by me). The mouthfeel is smooth and velvety, and actually slightly thicker than I thought it would be.

Overall, I'm glad I gave this beer another chance. While it isn't my favorite Porter, when I'm in the mood for something that has a different flavor profile, this will be high on my list of beer to grab. I now see why this beer has the reputation it does, as it very refreshing and surprisingly complex in flavor, whilst being remarkably easy to drink. Highly recommended!
Until next time, stay thirsty!

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2013 03:47:06 | More by Morakaton
Photo of Huffs

New York

3.21/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a pint glass with a nice full head developing, tan in color with good retention and lacing. Appearance was a dark brown to almost black. Aroma had strong notes of coffee and malt with some fruity and bread notes. Taste was sweet and malty with notes of bread, chocolate and coffee, with a hint of dried fruit. Mouthfeel was medium with a mild and dry aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2013 22:53:44 | More by Huffs
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Anchor Porter from Anchor Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 2,719 ratings.