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Anchor Porter - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor PorterAnchor Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,485 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,485
Hads: 3,446
Avg: 4.1
pDev: 17.32%
Wants: 181
Gots: 373 | 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.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,485 | Hads: 3,446
Photo of TimZebGir
4.1/5  rDev 0%

A:very dark brown almost black with thick creamy head(3/3)
S: smells of dark acidic malt with notes of licorice and a little bit of coffee and caramel (9/12)
T: caramel maltiness blends into drinkably Light flavors(16/20)
M: very creamy upfront but dry on finish (5/5)
O: that caramel really caught me by surprise a very drinkable beer and full of flavor too (8/10)

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Photo of MonkeyDunk
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Poured from 22 oz

Pours an opaque black with a thick creamy tan head. It's fun to watch the head grow and ripple like seafoam on the surface when you first pour it.

Cherry, cinnamon, bread, nice sweet maltiness, fresh floral hops

Balanced and rich, a full spectrum of flavors: sweet, tangy, bitter, even perceptible spice. It's incredible how the hops work with the malt in this beer--creating a unique flavor that jumps out right away, much like oranges. The tang with the bitter, floral hops and crystal malt sweetness also gives it a dark fruit impression in the background, blackberries, cranberries, concord grapes, raisin, black currants. A bourbon depth and boozy twang grow with each sip. A mild cinnamon spice. There's also a vegetal component, a bit like celery, artichoke, and licorice. Interesting finish--Chocolatey, with sharp bitterness of raw cacao.

B: Medium bodied, glad the mouthfeel isn't as thick as the head. Surprisingly not too carbonated despite thick head, which works well with the style.

O: As do many other reviewers here, I love this beer. Anchor Brewery never seems to fail. It makes me want to get on the several-month-long list to tour the facility and see how they brew.

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Photo of swooshjtb
4.75/5  rDev +15.9%

This is one of my favorite porters. Always pours with a thick tan head that lingers all the way down the glass. The roasted coffee and dark chocolate flavors are very abundant with each sip, but it is not overly sweet and off putting like many porters on the market.

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Photo of Carolvs
4.75/5  rDev +15.9%

This may be my favorite Porter of all-time. Poured from a single bottle into an ale glass. A beautiful, foamy, caramel head immediately billowed-up and laced all the way down the glass as I imbibed. Silky smooth on the mouthfeel and not a trace of bitterness from initial mouth contact to swallow to aftertaste. This one truly lives up to 'The Bros' rating of 99.

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Photo of Jeffreysan
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, completely opaque, pitch-black color with a half of a finger of caramel-colored head that dissolved away into a thin lacing of foam that almost completely covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Not much in the way of aroma at all. I get some faint notes of roasted malt, imparting some subtle notes of toasted dark bread, dark chocolate and smoke.

Taste: Wow! What this beer lacks in aroma, it more than makes up for in flavor! Lots of bready, roasted malt flavors, imparting notes of toasted dark bread, a touch of smoke, and lots of brown sugar-like sweetness. I get some faint flavors of licorice, dark molasses and a touch of coffee. Delicious!

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied to slightly chewy, with some pretty good carbonation. With an ABV of 5.6%, there is no alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is an outstanding porter! Great, bready, sweet flavors of roasted malt and brown sugar! Recommended!

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Photo of kkleu357
3.6/5  rDev -12.2%

From notes on 11/19/13

Really dark. Lots of flavor. Has a roasted malt flavor, but is also sour and tastes like alcohol. Kind of reminds me of a barley wine.

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Photo of MalterMatthau
4/5  rDev -2.4%

P: "Anchor" in cornflower blue handwriting on a papery label, other colors true on a nice print job that recalls the olden days, pictorial representation of anchor occurs three times on bottle.

A: Approaching black in color with amber hues on the edge. Very nice, is this a "beer ombre," and what is the best example of this effect? Liquid changes shape in different glasses but retains same volume until consumption.

S:Hint of good whiskey or brandy mixed with toffee and caramel.

T: Cream toffee&caramel followed by aftertaste whispers of a burned chocolate chip cookie, last drink in glass curiously has no aftertaste but achieves a lingering cream soda that fades into a sweet short-term memory.

Notes: Best American porter until I know otherwise.

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Photo of REGreenBTRB
4.18/5  rDev +2%

A: 3.75 - Pours very dark though not completely black. There is a little bit of a dark amber tint to it. About a two-finger head, very creamy looking.

S: 4.25 - A lot of dark roasty malt. You also pick up some sweet chocolate.Also a little dark fruit. Smell lovely!

T: 4.5 - SO tasty. Immediately you pick up the roasted malt and hint of chocolate. The malt is very present. Full of flavor. The dark fruit comes through as well. This is what I'd expect a porter to taste like. Very nice.

M: 4.25 - Very easy drinking. It's a little thin, but really smooth. Medium carbonation.

O: 4.18 - Overall it is a really nice beer, and something I'd certainly have again.

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Photo of Furlinator
4.13/5  rDev +0.7%

PoUrsula opaque black. The huge khaki head remains as a thick cap on top and leaves thick curtains of lace.

The smell is a balanced mixture of coffee, chocolate, wheat bread and faint vanilla.

The taste is also well balanced: chocolate, coffee, vanilla and a slightly bitter finish.

The texture is medium bodied with medium carbonation.

Well balanced is how I'd describe this brew. All the aforementioned flavors and aromas working together in harmony with positive results. A very impressive American porter.

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Photo of TheCondor
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

After having mixed experiences with other Anchor products, I decided to pick this up in a mix and match. Its a porter, so it can't be that bad.

Appearance - Pours a deep brown to almost black color with a thin half finger head. Pours almost the consistency of syrup, looks so thick and creamy. Leaves a decent lace on the side of the glass as well. Pours much like a porter is supposed to pour.

Smell - The nose is magnificent! Crazy amounts of dark fruits, coffee, malts, molasses, so complex. If the taste is anywhere near as good as the nose, this will be one incredible brew.

Taste - The taste is even better than the nose. I knew this beer was going to be a game changer from the first drink. Dark fruits are the biggest part of the beer, paired with smooth molasses, malts, coffee, and caramel.This is seriously one of the most magnificent tasting beers I have ever had in my entire life.

Mouthfeel - Smooth, big, rich, creamy. Finishes so smooth and thick, its unreal.

Overall - One of the overall best beers I have ever had. Enough said. It is incredible, oustanding, unrealistically good.

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Photo of Gear54
4.47/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

From a bottle into a pint glass.

A: dark black pour with thick kaki head and more lace than I've seen on a glass in a while.

S: roasty Carmel's and coffee. No hop aroma in the nose.

T: roasted malts dark chocolate and coffee

M: very smooth.

O: this beer deserves it's high marks.

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Photo of mthomp081
4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - dark brown, near black, creamy tan head, patching lacing

S - coffee, molasses, caramel, black malts, candied sugars

T - roasted malt, coffee, sweetness from some dark fruits like figs and dates, molasses, slight bitterness

M - medium to full bodied, some carbonation, chewy, creamy

O - Really great porter. Great combination and balance between the smell and taste from the roasted malt malts to the sweet molasses/caramel and dark fruits. Would certainly drink again,

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Photo of Anmaglahk
4.82/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

I bought this because of the simplistic bottle and the fact it was a porter. There is nothing simplistic about this beer.

I poured it from a bottle into a Sam Adams glass. The beer has a dark chocolate color, with about 3/4 inch of head. The aroma is that of dark chocolate and coffee.

The taste cannot be adequately described by my words. This is simply the best porter I have ever tasted.

This is just a wonderful beer. My words can't do it justice. #InLove

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Photo of Paincane
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Almost black body capped by mocha head. Excellent lacing and head retention.
S: Roasted malt, cocoa, cafe and smoky aromas.
T: Bittersweet chocolate, coffee, smoky flavors.
M: Smooth, dry and creamy beer. O: A big creamy tasty Porter that is easily drinkable and enjoyable.

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Photo of ThePaintedGrey
4.31/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12oz. bottle poured into imperial pint glass.

A: Abysmally dark brown, nearing black. Some ruby red highlights around the bottom of the glass when held up to my iPhone flashlight. A large mocha colored head starts out large, but fades down to a 1/4" creamy cap leaving vast amounts of lacing down the glass. A work of art in a glass.

S: Lots of dark roasted malts with some bittersweet cocoa, definitely closer to bitter than sweet though. A little bit of smokiness and some faint hop presence. Not overly complex or unique, but the aroma is strong and deeply enticing.

T: Man, oh man, this flavor is blissful. It's initial impression is sweet, but quickly fades. Dark roasted malts are rich and powerful, with some mild black coffee notes. The bittersweet chocolate fades back in towards the end, and the finish is primarily roasted malts with a strong smokiness. Complex; boastful; delicious.

M: Mouthfeel is solidly medium, smooth with lots of creaminess, but stays casual enough to quaff with relative ease. Low-ish ABV makes it a choice session beer.

O: I've heard this beer roll off the tongues of many a craft drinker, oft times with great praise following. Embarrassingly, it has taken me this long to try it—and for that, I'm kicking myself in the ass. It's so easily accessible here that I've often overlooked it, but now that I've finally grabbed it, I'm in love. It's everything I look for in a porter. Huge, rich flavors, with a solid mouthfeel and sessionable qualities. Sorry, Guinness, but I think I've found my new black beauty.

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Photo of KFBR392
3.58/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Finger worth of head on the pour which settled in to the edges of the glass while drinking. Above average active carbonation for the style. Some sticky lacing left behind.

Smell: Mossy hops mesh well with a bright malt sweetness. Espresso notes with some dark chocolate bitterness. There is an amber malt, toffee like sweetness on the body. A familiar yeast profile of Anchor beers shows up and adds a unique layer for a porter.

Taste: Toffee, Oats, and a unique yeast brightness really blasts on the front. Mossy hops and untamed oak opens up on the body. The finish is just the body slowly dying out with hits on oak and toffee popping up occasionally.

Mouthfeel: Much brighter and active on the palate then I expected. Carbonation fits. Some coffee ground dryness is left behind.

Overall: This was really something different. I expected the stout-ish porter that some many brewers are making but this is tough to really put a finger on. Odd but worth a shot.

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Photo of SitkaSteve
3.75/5  rDev -8.5%

Into a pint glass, this pours a thin medium black to brown color with a thin to medium sort of half fingered white to off white foamy head that dissipated within less than a finger's worth of fairly light foamy lacing.
The smell was somewhat roasty with a side of roastiness.
The taste was mainly the same with barely any difference in the taste.
On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body with a fair sessionability about it. The carbonation was somewhat there but nothing really overboard.
Overall, this was not a bad style whatsoever. I know I would have this again.

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Photo of lsiberian
4.79/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Anchor porter presents a deep opaque black with a strong foamy tan head that leaves excellent lacing in its absence. In the nose anchor porter produces a fantastic balance between sweet and malt while retaining the nutty richness expected in a porter. On the tongue this porter matches it's nose by creating a balanced sweet nutty malt that finishes with a fantastic bitter flavor on the tongue. In the mouth the presence of strong carbonation dominates leaving a smooth refreshing finishes that lingers with the delightful tickle of carbonation. Overall Anchor has delivered a top of the line Porter that masters appearance balance and mouthful. It is definitely in contention for my top Porter.

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Photo of chinchill
3.95/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle served in a Belgian snifter. "4JX" stamped on back label.

Pours very dark brown with a tan head that quickly reduces; fairly good lacing nonetheless.

Aroma: mild with more dark fruit than expected.

Flavor: richer and less sweet than the aroma suggests. Hints of dark bread, raisins, and light spices, with some bittersweet chocolate and a touch of coffee in the finish.

O: excellent porter, if not a great as the best (e.g., Fullers).

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

This is what pirates drink to keep even keel through the unmerciful ravages of mother nature's worst. If ye daren't take a drink, walk the plank instead or the bludgeoning ye shall receive shall equal the insolence of your insubordinate caterwauling for your mother's teet.

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

This is malt heaven!
Dark, rich, bitter, sweet--perfection.
Appearance: deep solid dark brown
Smell: Caramel and dates
Taste: perfect balance of deep, dark, and rich flavors finished with a nice bitterness
Overall: this is an amazing beer not to be missed. I have no favorite beer style, but this is on my list of favorite beers now.

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Photo of JaimeLondon
3.68/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice deep black Porter with a creamy, big and persistant foam of a brown shade.
Smell is made of roasted barley malt and a nice bread and grains aroma. There's also a subtle smell of chocolate.
Taste is similar but you can feel well the hops; there's a bitter and caffeinated aftertaste.
Medium body and carbonation.
Nice beer but not outstanding.

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Photo of brureview
4.06/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a dark coffee color in a stein with a 3F head,

The aroma is excellent- one of the best in its style: vanilla, toffee, coffee, molasses, caramel, and sweet.

The mouth feel is lightly carbonated.

The beer should be tasted at warmer temps: 48F+. At colder temps, the body is thin, and the taste doesn't stand out as much as in warmer temps: coffee, sweet, smooth malt, and molasses.

Overall, an excellent American style Porter.

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Photo of CTbrew32
3.87/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

First impression is that this is a chocolate forward porter, and very light on the coffee. Taste and smell are big on the milk chocolate and some caramel. Very little roasted malt present. Overall this is a creamy, chocolate porter that is smooth and easy drinking. Im not big on porters usually, but this is definitely one betters ones out there. (87/100)

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Photo of zeledonia
3.6/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Tasted 23 April 2014.

Pours very dark, almost black. One finger of light tan head, good retention and lacing. Very nice.

Smell is rich, sweet, and roasty. Has an oat-like light sweetness that I really like. A little char. Great depth.

Taste is good, but it's thinner and less complex than I remember it being. Sort of woody, lightly charred, a bit bitter. Just not all that interesting.

Feel is the low point. Sort of flat, thinner than I'd like. And those characters bring out the worse sides of the beer, leaving it slick, charred, and bitter on the tongue.

The last time I had this beer, I thought it was top-notch. Now I'm finding it mediocre. Weird. Thin, sort of flat, and lacking depth in the flavor.

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Anchor Porter from Anchor Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,485 ratings.