Anchor Porter - Anchor Brewing Company

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Anchor PorterAnchor Porter

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1,470 Reviews

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Reviews: 1,470
Hads: 3,404
rAvg: 4.12
pDev: 6.31%
Wants: 172
Gots: 342 | 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: 1,470 | Hads: 3,404
Photo of KFBR392
3.58/5  rDev -13.1%
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. (979 characters)

Photo of SitkaSteve
3.75/5  rDev -9%

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. (591 characters)

Photo of lsiberian
4.79/5  rDev +16.3%
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. (696 characters)

Photo of chinchill
3.95/5  rDev -4.1%
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). (453 characters)

Photo of Oliba
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
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. (273 characters)

Photo of Ale_Dog
5/5  rDev +21.4%
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. (334 characters)

Photo of JaimeLondon
3.68/5  rDev -10.7%
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. (347 characters)

Photo of brureview
4.06/5  rDev -1.5%
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. (435 characters)

Photo of CTbrew32
3.87/5  rDev -6.1%
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) (356 characters)

Photo of zeledonia
3.6/5  rDev -12.6%
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. (712 characters)

Photo of Henrich
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
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. (740 characters)

Photo of MarkoNm
3.41/5  rDev -17.2%
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. (368 characters)

Photo of mfnmbvp
3.91/5  rDev -5.1%
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. (1,303 characters)

Photo of fscottkey
3.3/5  rDev -19.9%
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. (748 characters)

Photo of abeeronthebeach
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
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. (531 characters)

Photo of Emnmarko
3.71/5  rDev -10%
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. (1,017 characters)

Photo of titty_mcbitty
4.39/5  rDev +6.6%
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. (554 characters)

Photo of safaricook
4.06/5  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 note, 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... (878 characters)

Photo of jimbuck
4.46/5  rDev +8.3%
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 had an aroma of honey,a little brown sugar am 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 it warmed up ,it took a noticeably heavier note,but very smooth.highly recommend. (379 characters)

Photo of jrenihan
3.86/5  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. (509 characters)

Photo of samtrillo
4.22/5  rDev +2.4%
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 (362 characters)

Photo of Zdrummer15
4.21/5  rDev +2.2%
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 (610 characters)

Photo of kindacold
3.85/5  rDev -6.6%
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. (279 characters)

Photo of alexrichman
4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
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. (764 characters)

Photo of illpass78
4.43/5  rDev +7.5%
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. (707 characters)

Anchor Porter from Anchor Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,470 ratings.