Anchor Porter - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor PorterAnchor Porter

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3,395 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,395
Reviews: 1,494
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 11.22%
Wants: 167
Gots: 338 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-01-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (27) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,395 | Reviews: 1,494
Reviews by jkrich:
Photo of jkrich
4.42/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Heavy and thick looking pour from a 12 oz. bottle: nearly black and opaque looking with a creamy, slowly receding beige head.

Quite aromatic with pungent, dark fruit, brown sugar with a wine-like quality; sort of reminds me of Fuller's porter.

This is very quaffable and refreshing while maintaining a complex flavor profile. A very nice, subdued roastiness is followed by semi-sweet chocolate with a pleasant caramel in the aftertaste as well as hints of butterscotch. There is a faint bite of hop bitterness that keeps it quite refreshing.

Surprisingly light-bodied with moderate carbonation. The mouthfeel is clean and somewhat short-lived, but this is part of the incredible drinkability of the porter.

While not the most complex of porters, this brewery created an interesting, sessionable porter with lots of character and nuances of flavor. I am sad it has taken me so long to try it.

More User Reviews:
Photo of marieli
4.52/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. 52d. Smell is malt with a little caramel-like aroma. Taste is on the clean and lighter side. Some slight bitterness that is well balanced. Overall a very versatile porter and very drinkable under many conditions. I liked it a lot and this would be a solid choice if Black Butte was unavailable.

Photo of MrHolland
5/5  rDev +22%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of my favorite brews.. started my craft brewery obsession.

Pours a dark black with ruby highlights around the edge of the glass with a big tan frothy head that retains through the whole beverage and laces the glass. Smells of sweet malts, alcohol, and just brewed coffee notes. Very rich earthy and smooth coffee notes in the taste of the brew. Feels like liquid silk going into the mouth.
Could drink one of these right when I wake up in the morning ;) Def. my favorite beer from my favorite style at the moment. Recommend ++.

Photo of oberon
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a real deep brown with a small almond colored head that leaves some decent lacing,the aroma is of deeply roasted malt and a little earthiness.The taste is a variety of different flavors,some roasted malt in the start with a almost caramel sweet middle ending woody and smoky,Real nice body feel one of the best American porters that I have had.

Photo of RoyalT
3.55/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – The beer is almost jet black with a moderate head.

Smell – The dark malt has a sweet fruitiness that reminds me of my wife’s fruit salad (bananas, Rainer cherries, grapes, and some other stuff).

Taste – The taste is right on with the aroma. The fruity malt is augmented a little bit with a hint of hops and a splash of coffee. It’s a little shallow for my taste but good nevertheless.

Mouthfeel – Very creamy with little to no carbonation and medium-bodied.

Drinkability – This goes down pretty well. It’s smooth, tasty, and doesn’t have any awkward or obnoxious flavors to slow down the drinker.

Comments – I would have preferred a little more complexity and a heavier body for this one, but it’s still an all around good brew. I think this would be a great porter for introducing a friend to the style.

Photo of tectactoe
3.63/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours pitch black, deep brown hints barely pull through the edges. Very volatile brew, tan head mildy fluffy but quick to disappear. Tons of roasted malts on the nose, slight hints of chocolate; but the most prominent is a deep fruity sweetness mostly reminiscent of grapes and figs - coupled with the alcohol touch, it is very much like a red wine aroma. Upon first sip, it tastes almost more like an Irish stout than an American porter. Big roasty flavor, unsweetened coffee, some dark chocolate in the very back. Big barley flavor; toasted and dark. Sweet at first, then the bitterness eventually comes into play. Hops are very present in the latter half; leafy and ashy. The sweetness comes back to finish it out - fairly dry all around. Very slight creaminess to the body, but overall a pretty thin mouth and just a touch too watery for the style.

This beer reminds me of Guinness Extra Stout and several other Irish stouts, but its got slightly more flavor. Infusion of wine-like aromas with heavy roasted malts make for an interesting drink. Lots of flavor at only 5.6% ABV.

Photo of t2grogan
3.25/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

This is really strange. I'm not digging it.

Photo of sgoodship
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm very familiar with Anchor Steam - it's very mainstream in Chicago. This was my first legitimate look at Anchor Brewing.

A: Purchased a 1pt. 6 fl.oz. bottle at EV1 in Evanston. It poured a lovely dark brown - almost black . Burgundy glow against the light. The head was a finger high coffee stained cream fluffy head that left fantastic lacing. As the head dissipated, a nice thin head stayed throughout.

S: Caramel malt, a little bread, coffee. Some pleasing sourness. Good familiar porter smell - not that bold.

T: Initially, I found the carbonation inhibiting my taste. I let it bubble off, so that I could enjoy. Dry front, then a hint of dark fruit, some of the sweet caramel malt payoff and then quickly to the coffee and bitter dark chocolate. Finish was a hint of hops and the aftertaste felt like a mix of hop sourness and burnt molasses. Well balanced overall.

M: Medium bodied and medium carbonation. If you don't pay attention to the carbonation, the drink is actually quite creamy and smooth.

D: A lovely porter. A little too much carbonation for my taste and the aftertaste was a little too burnt for my liking. Not taking away from the quality of this brew - really awesome and I'd be happy to have one anytime.

Photo of Dmann
4.36/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer came well recommended and it did not let me down at all. It poured a very dark brown with a nice big brown head that lasted quite awhile before leaving a nice lace around the glass. The smell was more on the chocolate side but still had a little coffee scent as well. The taste had a slight smokyness to it that was very pleasing and the burnt chocolate flavors really stood out for me. The mouthfeel was a bit thinner than I was expecting from a beer that poured this thick, but it was very nice. This is one of the most drinkable porters I have had and I will most definantly get it again.

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice deep brown / black with virtually no head. Minimal lacing as well. The smell is burnt, roasted grains with hints of coffee and cocoa as well. Some nice floral hops float in and out.

The first sip has a predominent burnt, almost smoky malt flavor upfront with a background melding of coffee, cocoa and slight hop nuances. Quite a bitter, burnt bread flavor with hints of molasses makes for a interesting porter.

Mouthfeel is good and carbonation is not overwhelming. It goes down smooth and hits the spot...pretty much perfect for the style. Drinkability is good and this would make a tasty session if I was in the mood. If you enjoy porters, this one is worthy of a try.

Photo of chOAKbarrell
4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Anchor chose an appropriate name for their brewery, as it has turned out to be exactly that - an anchor for the craft beer industry. You can always count on them to make a delicious, satisfying product.

This fine porter is a black beauty whose smell only hints at the treat to come. If there was a beer dictionary, it would be appropriate for under the definition of "porter" to say "see Anchor." Everything about this beer is on point - from the deep black hue to the chocolate & roasted undertones in the flavor. Also - very subtle carbonation that dies away as the beer washes down your throat. Excellent for a heavier, darker beer such as this.

This beer is a delight to drink and I will be enjoying it for many years to come.

Photo of andyfrancis
3.98/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown while pouring, opaque, smooth black in the glass with a tall, thick, rich, tan head. Beautiful, slow foam reduction and clumping makes me want to shoot a time-lapse video.

Smells of sweet dark malt all the way...roasty notes of chocolate, cherry, and coffee.

Sweet, tastes like it smells with a hint of bitter, goes down very smooth. Good body for a porter. Definitely not one of those watery guys.

Great flavor and mouthfeel, more complex and heavy than most porters. But, given that bold taste and heaviness, I wouldn't mind a bit more alcohol content.

Works great to wash down some Cowgirl Creamery Red Hawk washed rind cheese. The porter takes over for a couple seconds, only to have the cheese break back through and play together nicely with the roasty bitterness on your palate.

Photo of warnerry
4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours near black with two fingers of creamy head. Leaves some nice lacing behind.

S - Smell is relatively subtle, but definite notes of chocolate and roasted malts.

T - Taste is fantastic. Wonderful blend of roasted malt with some nice hop bitterness for balance. Creamy and bright at the same time.

M - Medium creamy mouthfeel with some lingering earthiness on the tongue. Very nice.

O - A very well crafted porter that would be easy to sip all day.

Photo of Todd
4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 1pt 6oz light brown bottle. Batch number on the back, no freshness date.

Appearance: Dark brown to near black with ruby edges in the light. Mily coffee coloured head; creamy, foamy, sticky with a patchy lace of various bubble sizes that stick as it settles to a respectable, lasting lace.

Smell: Ripe dark fruits, black malts, smooth molasses.

Taste: A silky smooth experience on the palate that rides out with a prickly carbonation feel. Medium-bodied. Complex, yet subtle, malt flavours consist of an even dextrin sweetness, date/fig, ripe fruitiness, molasses bite, hint of unsweetened/dry chocolate, burnt edges and an astringent roasted malt flavour that peaks with a near puckering bitter citric edge. Lip smacking! Hops also lend a gentle herbal spice to the flavour. Finish is dry with residual burnt malt flavours.

Notes: Hands down one of the best porters in the US. I'd even go so far as saying one of the best in the world. This is what a modern day porter should be. If you've yet to try this beer, go buy some now.

Photo of twi1609372
2.65/5  rDev -35.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

i know i will be the only "bad" review for this beer but i just didnt like it. looks nice, semlls nice, but i cant agree witht he taste. thick, but thick isnt always bad. just a bit too strong for my taste, maybe, but i like other dark beers, i am just unable to reconcile this taste as good in my mind.

Photo of grynder33
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured with a big Chocolate soda looking head, chocolately carmel aroma, chocolate first taste, smooth creamy tongue feel, and then the pleasant malt sweetness takes it home, doesnt have that lousy bitter alcohol aftertaste. What kept it from being perfect was that it was just a tad thin for a porter. I've already restocked

Photo of Beaver13
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours a dark brown with ruby highlights. It has a huge big-bubbled fluffy light brown head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is very subdued - lactic chocolate and tar and a little coffee.

The flavor is sweet chocolate with some tangy and sour fruitiness and a bitter roasted finish. It's kind of a mis-mash of disjoint flavors. It smooths out as it warms (and thankfully loses much of the sour tanginess). The mouthfeel is medium to full and pretty creamy.

Overall, it's a decent porter. Definitely better warmer.

Photo of generallee
4.53/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass. The neck label has a nice description of the beer and there is a bottle code (OFJ) imprinted on the back label.

Appearance: It has a dark brown/black body with deep crimson highlights and a tall three finger beige head on top. The head is slow fading and thick. It coats the glass as I tip it to my mouth and leaves thick splotchy lace patters behind.

Smell: The nose is malty sweet and roasty with caramel, toffee, bready and light toasted bread notes with a hint of chocolate.

Taste/Palate: It's sweet up front with lots of deep malty texture in a full body. Roasted grain, toasted bready notes, caramel and toffee blend with mild bitterness from the mostly hidden hops and finish a little dryer but still with some residual sugary sweetness. It has a smooth full feel with light carbonation.

Notes: Overall it's a well made and very enjoyable American Porter.

Photo of Fcip78
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Top 10 desert island beers for me. Pours perfect opaque in a nonic glass, with a oatmeal colored foamy head. Superb notes of roasted chocolate malt and hop bitterness with each sip. A truly world-class artisan beer in every sense of the word. If you have not had one, go get it!

Photo of Doomcifer
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a robust black with an incredibly creamy light brown head that lingers forever. Tremendous lacing decorating the glass as well.

The aroma, oh the sweet aroma...Smells of sweet chocolate, molasses, nutty, chocolate covered malted smells like dessert. I could just sniff this baby forever. Fortunately though, I get to drink it.

WOW...Molasses, brown sugar, milk chocolate, hops, roastiness, caramel, butterscotch...there is even underlying fruit flavors poking through. There is just so many things going on in this porter and it is ALL fantastic. Very complex.

Very creamy mouthfeel with perfect carbonation. This beer is obviously best enjoyed after taking out of the fridge and letting it sit for a good 15-20 minutes. I can't say enough about this absolute MASTERPIECE. This and the Smuttynose Robust Porter are my current favorites. I cannot get enough of them. This one may even edge out on the Robust Porter. It is that phenomenal.

Photo of BuckeyeSlim
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz. bottle poured into a New Belgium snifter.

A - Huge three-finger head. Looks like a light brown sponge. Very slowly dissipates by collapsing toward the center. Lots of lace on the sides and big island of foam in the middle. Almost black in color and solidly opaque.

S - Malty, cafe-au-lait, a hint of well-done caramel and toasted almonds. Dark, dried fruit like raisin also shows up in the nose as it gets warmer.

T - Caramelized, almost burnt brown sugar; milk chocolate; light-to-moderately toasted malts; hints of butterscotch up front. French-roast/espresso coffee, dark chocolate and dark biscuit in the finish.

M - Creamy to start with good carbonation and solid structure. Nice body gives way to a clean finish that lets the bitter chocolate linger with the roasted malts.

D - Easy to enjoy several of these, as each quaff moves easily and pleasantly from sweet to bitter without tasting the extremes of sugar or hops. Just the right amount of roasting makes this clearly a porter, not a slightly less-roasted stout in disguise. Consistently one of my favorite porters and what I reach for when I want a sure thing.

Photo of Jason
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12oz short brown. No freshness date.

Appearance: Black in colour with dark brown hues on the edges. A very creamy tan lace retains well.

Smell: Sweet toffee, caramel and light coffee. Faint alcohol is present also.

Taste: Very smooth and creamy, semi chewy mouth feel from a hefty malt back bone of grain, malt sweetness, light burnt malt and rounded caramel. Hop bitterness is just enough to balance out the malt a bit. The after taste is fading burnt caramel and toffee.

Notes: Rich yet not overwhelming, a porter to reckon with in drinkability ... it gets very addictive.

Photo of Billolick
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of the American classics, this stuff has been delicious for over 20 years! Standard small bottle sampled, pours almost black with a dark tan head. Moderate lacing. Nose of cocoa. Medium bodied, lucious smooth mouthfeel, creamy on the tongue, rich flavors of coffee, cocoa, taffee and caramel. Lightly hopped, finish is more cocoa, powdered sugar and coffee. Tasty creation, always a good selection

Photo of fdrich29
4.23/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from Bukowski's in Boston.

Wonderful brew! Not sure why I chose it off the menu at Bukowski's, but I'm certainly glad I did. Great looking beer, rich dark color, with a chocolate milk looking head. Sweet, fruity smell and deep rich taste. Substantial body and mouthfeel, yet suprisingly drinkable. I will be looking for this one again in the very near future and expect it to become a winter staple for me.

Photo of nem2006
3.52/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured the beer into a nonic glass. It was extremely dark, almost completely black. Had a fairly weak head on it that didn't hold very well.

Had a little chocolate to the smell. The taste was slightly sweet at the start, but finished with a hoppy bitterness. I am not a very big fan of porters, but this one is one I would try again.

Tried it with a gouda cheese. I would probably try it with a more aged or smoked gouda.

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Anchor Porter from Anchor Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 3,395 ratings.