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Anchor Porter - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor PorterAnchor Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,902 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,902
Reviews: 1,423
rAvg: 4.11
pDev: 11.19%
Wants: 117
Gots: 119 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-01-2001)
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Ratings: 2,902 | Reviews: 1,423 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mntlover


4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours a beautifuk black with a fluffy tan head that leaves a good dose of lacing. Smells of toased malt with hints of caramel, coffee, toffee and fruit. Smells creamy and tasty. Taste is sweet malt flavor followed by lightly burnt malt with touches of caramel and coffee flavors. Finishes lightly bitter coffee flavors and hops. This is one good medium full bodied brew a nice solid porter. Drinkability is great this is a fine porter forgot how good it was, will not forget again!

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2004 19:50:00 | More by mntlover
Photo of mynie


4.58/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Goodness me. Pours as black as night with ruby hedges showing if it's held up to light. Pretty. Big head that stays and lacing to boot.

And it smells great. A twinge of coffee. A bitter and sweet smell. Not bittersweet. Bitter AND sweet. The scents do not counteract each other in anyway. They coexist in perfect harmony.

Taste smooth, very creamy with strong traces of chocolate and coffee. Maybe a hint of earth? Sometimes soil tastes good, though. The best part about this beer is the taste is leaves in your mouth after it's gone. It tingles, makes your mouth seem vaccous and makes you crave for more.

FULL body. Great body. This is the Halle Berry of beers. It's got that kind of body. Goes down smooth.

This is fine, fine beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2004 07:24:28 | More by mynie
Photo of twi1609372


2.6/5  rDev -36.7%
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.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2004 17:51:39 | More by twi1609372
Photo of surfmeister


3.9/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big ,dark, bubbly volcano of brown to black lava. Massive foamball which threatened to explode from the glass. Malty, chocolatey aromas that fill your nose. Tastes of malt, coffee, chocolate, somewhat sweet with mild counterbalancing bitterness. Quite a taste experience. I, however would not want to drink many of these robust beers.

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2004 05:23:50 | More by surfmeister
Photo of Ricochet


4.53/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I don't pour beers so they have a head really, or very little. The one way I know this beer is something special are when small round bits of this beer form at the top of the glass. I have had only a few that did this, the Samuel Adams Triple Bock would be the most recent memory.

Smell is complex, like a fine wine, light fruity flavor but nothing else takes center stage.

Mouthfeel is excellent. There is so much flavor in this beer , leaves like a sweet tasting bourbon . Foams up on the tounge.

Taste? What can I say. By far the best porter I've had to date. It has notes of chocolate, notes of Trappist Ales, notes of coffee, just a bit bitter, and wrapped up with a perfect chocolate aftertaste.

I'd rank this as the best, traditional porter beers. As for my favorite porter, I respect the craft. Drinkablilty was only a 4 because I wouldn't enjoy more than one at a time in a sitting.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2004 04:58:38 | More by Ricochet
Photo of Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Now I know why its their best rated beer. A superior porter, with all of the Anchor creamy easy on mouth mouthfeel/flavour. One of the few porters I desire again. Mocha bittersweet rather than chocolate and still rich, not too toasty coffee. Just easy and smooth. Roast, anise nice at end of meal, carbonation on tongue as it sooths it.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2004 04:24:54 | More by Sammy
Photo of Hibernator


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

I served this 12oz beer in a pint glass. Absolutely beautiful head. Around 3/4 -1 inch thick head.

The appearance was a dark black/ruby color. I taste an intense mix of hops, chocolate and hints of coffee flavors. All of these complexities make one serious beer.

The taste is so good...rich and creamy. Smooth mouthfeel. This is a quality beer and one of my favorite Porters to date.


Serving type: bottle

07-08-2004 00:21:37 | More by Hibernator
Photo of NEhophead


4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Large 1" milky, tan head with very nice retention. Plenty of carbonation. Tons of thick lacing that sticks throughout the entire glass. Pitch black coloration.

Beautiful malt-chocolatey goodness in the aroma. A creamy coffee nose. Wonderful aromatics that beg to be tasted.

Smooth, espresso/coffee flavor with a hint of vanilla. Almost tastes like a homemade coffee milkshake. A nice sweetness that compliments the flavors really well. Faint warming alcohol presence.

Very balanced. Chocolatey smoothness; It's a malty porter but very mellow at the same time. Not too heavy at all.

It's a bold porter, but I can't see myself ever getting sick of this one. I would be very content drinking only these all night.

This really is what a porter should taste like!

Serving type: bottle

07-06-2004 00:31:54 | More by NEhophead
Photo of Gagnonsux


4.15/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Nice pitch black brew that leaves a short, creamy light brown head. Looks a lot like coffee to me.

Smell- Rich chocolate malt smells, very enjoyable to the nose.

Taste/Mouthfeel- Creamy and malty. Very chocolate tasting and really rich for a beer. Complex flavor works on multiple levels. Finishes with a high level of sweetness.

Drinability- Too filling for more than a couple, but still a really great beer. Throughout drinking the appeal of Anchor Porter increases on my pallate. Not something I'd usually go for (a little too chocolatey and rich for me), but I still recognize a great beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2004 22:22:02 | More by Gagnonsux
Photo of JISurfer

South Carolina

4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is my fav beer from the group at Anchor Steam. It was a nice rich chocolatey smell, with a tinge of hops, and the heaviness of malt there as well. The big thing was the chocolate though. The head was a pillowy/frothy beast that lasted a long time and left a nice impression on me over it. The taste was another good part to the brew. It was similar to the smell, but wasn't as strong on the chocolate, and rather blended and balanced out well. As for drinkability, it was hard to put it down. I couldn't get enough of it.

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2004 18:01:32 | More by JISurfer
Photo of cbl2

New York

3.38/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


Black with slight hint of red; topped with a 1/4 inch tan head.

Sharp raisin/prune aroma with a hint of chocolate underneath.

Roasted coffee flavors are the first to appear followed by burnt raisins and chocolate finish. An odd blend of flavors which make for an ok beer, but not one I would pursue in the future.

Serving type: bottle

06-29-2004 19:11:01 | More by cbl2
Photo of mattcrill


4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep dark brown with a little foamy tan head that dissolves fairly soon. Smells smoky, coffee, carmel, and a hint of dried fruits. All in all, the smell says, "Drink me!". Tastes of carmel, coffee, roasted malts, and a sweet finish bombards your taste buds. This is just a great porter. Really bummed to see the bottom of the glass. I rank this up there as one of the best. There's a reason why this continues to be the classic example of a porter.

Serving type: bottle

06-26-2004 04:11:22 | More by mattcrill
Photo of ken3c


4.13/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Deep dark brown. Thin wisps of foam. This beer doesn't slosh so much as it jiggles.

Prominent chocolate smell.

Chocolate, nutty, rich, and delicious. The bitterness rounds out the flavor and balances well.

Well carbonated for this style but it contrasts well with the thickness.

It's hard to drink more than of these at a sitting but I'll look forward to having one six day in a row.

Serving type: bottle

06-25-2004 04:35:30 | More by ken3c
Photo of Gump


3.58/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Anchor Porter
Deep brown pour with a head so dense it doesn't move.
Roasted malty aroma which smells like it has a high ABV. Good mouthfeel with an initially sweet carmel taste.
Some very complex tastes and smells come from this one. Licorice and bready flavors with a unique bittersweet aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2004 00:55:37 | More by Gump
Photo of andyo


3.35/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured jet black with a grey head.

Smell reminded me of smoked wood. First taste of this beer had a real alcohol aftertaste that i was not too fond of. This beer got better as it warmed up. Lots of cocoa, faint hints of rum and fruit. Very round mouthfeel- balanced. Seems like a decent beer, but one I couldn't drink too many of. I wish I liked this beer more...just not my cup of tea...er...beer.

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2004 00:12:20 | More by andyo
Photo of beertaster13


4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very dark blackish/brown (coffee) color with a small cream tan head. Suprisingly not much lacing left on glass. Smells of smoked wood chips on a grill, earth tones and of course the roasted malt, mocha tone. Maybe a hint of honey or molasses. Taste is of grilled mocha chips and slight molasses. The malt sweetness is a flurish and the hops are a perfect balance to balance out the sweet taste. Full bodied and creamy porter, a drinkable porter for a dessert or with a meal, goes great with ice cream, couldn't drink more than 1 of these 22 oz bottles.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2004 22:38:38 | More by beertaster13
Photo of FormatKid


4.18/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I picked up a single of this from Riverside Beverage as a part of a mixed sixer.

Pours out a nice solid black, ruby is only hinted at when backed by direct lighting. Perfectly formed light-brown head bubbles up a respectable 3 fingers-width. The lacing clings in chunky rings as the beer moves down the glass.

A dark fruitiness is the first thing I pick up in the nose, plums possibly. Sweet delicate chocolatiness and coffee backs it up, along with a faint alcohol smell and raisons.

Definitely a little different than any porter I’ve tasted before. There is more of a dark fruity/raison flavor than I would expect. Chocolate and coffee tones are there but a bit more subdued and play the back to that dense fruitiness. Sweet all the way through practically with only light twangs of earthy bitterness at the edges. Aftertaste is long-lasting, sweet and dense with light tones of grape-skin. Mouthfeel is a tad lighter than I would like, but it’s bearable.

This is most likely the most complex porter I’ve sampled to date. It’s deep, sweet, fruity, and robust….Excellent!

Serving type: bottle

05-21-2004 03:03:01 | More by FormatKid
Photo of dedalus


4.08/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

a beautiful beer. in the low light it filled the glass with deep black, and crowned off in a fluffy, off-white head that diminished to a thin cap by the time i got to the bottom of the glass.

lots of roast in the nose, with some dryish hints of cocoa and coffee. just a hint of sappy hops lurking under the broad, dark roast aromas.

aggressive carbonation slightly mars the mouthfeel. i also found myself wishing the beer were a bit thicker, but that might push it into stout territory, depending on the criteria by which you differentiate porters from stouts.

gorgeous flavors. black coffee and chocolate dominate, but the sappy bitterness of the hops comes through just enough to balance the roast and sweetness. reverse olfaction awakens some dark fruit (figs?) and some sweet, grainy, oatmealy flavors.

a must-have porter. some will enjoy the stingy carbonation more than others, but this is an assertively flavorful beer that can stand alone or accompany a good bowl of bean stew, chili, or vanilla bean ice cream.



Serving type: bottle

05-17-2004 15:54:37 | More by dedalus
Photo of henrysunset


3.83/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Deep as night with a nearly an inch nice tan head of medium-sized bubbles. Head fell quickly leaving fine lacing on glass.

Smells dark like a stout, hint of orange or apricot as well as the expected chocolate scents.

thin but tasty; same "bite" in the back of the throat as anchor steam's regular brew, but with a wonderful smooth choco/coffee aftertaste.

good value and very tasty. Will definitely be back for more. It tastes liek a perfect dessert beer, and it's priced to drink regularly.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2004 05:15:44 | More by henrysunset
Photo of PSUDREW


3.95/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Wow, I am VERY impressed with this porter.

It pours a pitch color. No light shall pass throught this thing. Also, a thick, creamy, frothy tan head on top of this beast. mmmMMM

The smells woody-spicy mix, very interesting

Now for the tase. It is a creamy, interesting mix of carmel, coffee, coco, with a nice hoppy bittering for effect. It has a dry, vannilly finish, which completement the main tastes very very nicely. I am very impressed with the bledning of flavors in the over-all product. Anchor proves themselves with this beer!

Thanks nvsblman for this one!

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2004 02:53:00 | More by PSUDREW
Photo of blitheringidiot


3.83/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Have to give ANCHOR a 4.5/5 appearance since this is a solid dark, black with a khaki tight ¼ “ head cover. There is NO carbonation. Whao! This is almost as black as WEYERBACKER Black Hole. The retained head is like sand colored paint on used motor oil. That is the darkest lace I’ve ever seen.

Scents are a cross of deep mature malts and sweet woody hops. This is a somber Porter, almost an antique these micro-days.

Tastes of vanilla ice cream and roasted malts. 5.6% ABV. Bitter front taste aplenty, but finishes to a dark coffee. More of a roasted malty taste that pushes the hops out of the picture.

Last swigs: Just a quality all around solid tasty Porter. ANCHOR put craft beer on the map, baby!

Beer is good. Happy beering.

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2004 21:06:40 | More by blitheringidiot
Photo of GuinnessSmurf


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

Pours into my glass like midnight oil and produces a generous caramel-colored, rocky head. The smells are fighting against the active smells at the bar. My nose picked up a major chocolate and coffee influence with an overall earthy smell.

The taste is wonderful - a full bodied, rich almost dessert beer. It is a great combination of chocolate malts, prune, and coffee-style bitters. The beer moves slowly over the tongue and swallows like a creamy milk stout. This beer was wonderful and I immediately ordered another one.

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2004 16:44:07 | More by GuinnessSmurf
Photo of RootedFool


4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle purchased at the North Coast Co-op in Arcata, California.

Pours black with a ruby-flecked mahogany aura. The head is a quarter inch tall, creamy, frothy, chocolate milk in color and leaves some nice pasty swaths of lace on the glass.

Smell is rich -- light chocolate, light coffee, a dash of prune juice, I even pick up on hints of caramelized banana. Overall: sweet, with a crusty bitter shell.

Taste opens with a deep, roasted bitterness that almost immediately sweetens up in the middle -- espresso slightly sweetened with caramel -- and closes on burnt chocolate and espresso splashed notes that linger long on my palate. Wonderful.

Best porter I've ever had -- full of character, depth, thoroughly interesting.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2004 00:26:27 | More by RootedFool
Photo of cerevisiaephilus


4.35/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Very nice nose on this beer. Sweet notes. Not so much chocolate or roasty in the nose. Some good caramel notes. Flavor is very nice, but I couldn't tell it was a porter. Very subdued chocolate and/or roasted flavors. I taste a lot more caramel or maybe munich malts than dark ones. Very little hops, nice sweet finish with just a touch of darker malts behind the tongue. Really has a nice body as well, very smooth. Very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

04-12-2004 03:11:04 | More by cerevisiaephilus
Photo of jimdkc


4.03/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Very dark brown with a smallish, creamy brown head that soon fades to a thin film. Smell is sweet roasted malts. Taste is roasted malt, mild dark chocolate notes, with an earthy, herbal hop bitterness at the finish. Smooth, creamy mouthfeel. Dry finish. Overall, a very good example of an American Porter. I'd buy it again!

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2004 11:49:29 | More by jimdkc
Anchor Porter from Anchor Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 2,902 ratings.