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Anchor Porter - Anchor Brewing Company

Anchor PorterAnchor Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,721 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2721
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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Ratings: 2,721 | Reviews: 1,411 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of tmm313


4.36/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Brown so dark its almost black, with a super creamy 1 finger head. Great lacing.

Smell: Honestly, it smells like Anchor Steam (with its notes of apple and pear) plus dark chocolate, coffee, plums, and some char mixed in. Really crisp and refreshing.

Taste: Same as the smell: suspiciously similar to Steam (with its notes of apple and pear) at the base with dark chocolate, coffee, dark fruits, char and some peanuts mixed in. Lush and refreshing.

Mouthfeel: Really nice, smooth, medium-thick body with crisp carbonation. Almost has a cooling effect.

Overall: One of the most refreshing Porters I've ever had. It is very well balanced, and the flavors play really well together. I'm curious to learn if Steam and this beer share common ingredients and/or how similar the brewing techniques are between the two. You can definitely tell they come from the same source. I will surely be having this again.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2013 23:38:44 | More by tmm313
Photo of dwren89


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

Appearance: very stout like, opaque, black, with dark tan head

Aroma: roasty and fruity with slight burnt chocolate hints

Taste: roasty, fruity, and nutty all in equal parts, with a really delicious earthy finish. Malty, but not overwhelmingly so

Mouthfeel: full body, medium carbonation, somewhat thick, rich, and silky on the tongue but not quite mouth coating

Overall: A really, really great porter from w brewery that doesn't get the credit it deserves. A delicious mix of nutty, fruity, and roasty characters that drinks malty but not mouth coatingly-so. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2013 23:45:20 | More by dwren89
Photo of BeerKangaroo


3.89/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Into a pint glass:

A: dark brown colored body with less than a finger's worth of foamy off white head that dies to a film coating the top of the body, a nice full coating of lacing rings the glass

S: roasted malt, and kinda toasty as well

T: roasted malt but adds a light bittering flavor through some coffee flavoring, bitter coffee aftertaste and dry finish

M: medium, maybe sessionable - hmmm, carbonation is substantial and good for the style, nothing obscure, but nothing that shows anything different for the style

O: definitely worthy of many more pours and I'm super glad I'm having it this time of year - perfect timing

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2013 23:55:03 | More by BeerKangaroo
Photo of Wortman1998

New York

3.98/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance - Intensely dark brown with a creamy tan colored frothy head. Light lacing clings to the glass.
Smell- Intense. The smell of the malt comes through loud and clear.
Taste- Mimics the smell accurately with a strong malty start and a wicked mixture of flavors that include coffee, butterscotch?..
Most flavorful porter I've ever tasted.

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2013 23:29:16 | More by Wortman1998
Photo of Mojo


4.36/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 ounce bottle -> Westbrook Brewing Company snifter

A - pours a deep obsidian black with a creamy one finger head, decent retention and some spotty lacing.

S - the nose is much as you would expect from a porter. Chocolate, java, toffee

T - the taste follows the nose. Toffee, black licorice, coffee, caramel, cola, roasted nuts and molasses.

M - just about right, neither thick nor thin with decent carbonation

O - a classic porter for sure. Being a big porter fan I find this to be just as good as two of my favorites Smuttynose Robust Porter and Founders Porter.

Serving type: bottle

10-23-2013 02:57:32 | More by Mojo
Photo of tbeckett

Ontario (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from the MLCC in Winnipeg. From notes.

A - Poured nearly black with reddy brown edges. One finger of off white head on top and medium carbonation. Spotty lace and a solid finger of retention.

S - Lovely chocolate, roast, hops, dark malt, dark fruit. Quite nice.

T - Lot's of dark fruit again, chocolate, roast. Dark fruit was quite strong for the style and enjoyable.

M - Mild carbonation, medium creamy body, and a slightly sweet finish.

O/D - Solid porter. Nice fruitiness and easy to drink. A nice solid porter that is deserved of it's stature.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2013 23:54:03 | More by tbeckett
Photo of Bosoxfan20


3.83/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A- Dark brown with chestnut and mahogany accents. Light tan head of about 1 finger. Impressive lacing.

S- Big malty notes of roasted nuts, caramel, vinegar, earthy and soil aroma. Touch of alcohol. I can smell a little bit of San Francisco in my glass.

T- Malt forward with acid hop bitterness balancing out the finish. Hints of chocolate, but not as much as billed. Toffee. Balance seems to be key here. Not quite as bold as some of the other recent American porters. Reminds more of an English style.

M- Certainly lighter body than most of the style. Light on the tongue as the bitterness is quite soft. Smooth and refreshing. Fantastic drinkability in part to the light body. A porter that can be had with ease any time of year.

O- Love the aroma and the malt profile of this one. It's complex, rich, and old school. A purposeful flow to it. A classic, well done example.

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2013 04:24:29 | More by Bosoxfan20
Photo of beergoot


4.2/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured a black body with a dense, creamy light tan head. Toffee and chocolate scents; a hint of vanilla; toasted grains. Creamy and velvety smooth on the tongue; medium-heavy body. Deep, soothing milk chocolate malt and grain flavors with a tingling hop bitterness sneaking up at the finish.

I seldom find this beer in Colorado Springs, so this is the one west coast beer I picked up while otherwise loading up on some New England regional beers. I'm very glad I did, because this palate pleaser brought back memories of this classic beer that I haven't enjoyed in five or more years. Rich and satisfying throughout, complexity and depth galore, this is one “meaty” yet very drinkable dark ale.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2013 02:33:28 | More by beergoot
Photo of arc3636


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

A - deep black with 2 fingers of head

S - cream and sour chocolate

T - full flavor, sour and peppery notes of malt stand out

M - fils up the mouth, taste mellows as it sits in your mouth

O - not as sweet as many porters I've tasted, but enjoyed the sour and peppery flavor

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2013 02:19:45 | More by arc3636
Photo of ThisWangsChung


4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a very dark ruby color. A shit ton of head is formed - it's three fingers high, and light tan in shade. It's also pretty long lasting, with a rocky texture and some great lacing left behind.

S: There's actually a lot going on here. The very first thing I notice is some plummy dark fruits and some chocolate. Backing that is a healthy yet subtle hop note. And there's also a decent amount of caramel, toffee, and brown sugar. It's not the biggest nose ever, but who cares? It's contemplative and inviting nonetheless.

T: The very first sip is chocolaty. The second sip is fruitier in tone yet with a hoppy finish. The third sip sees the hops mingle with the subtle roast to create a great coffee flavor. Some licorice flavors also appear. It's not suffocatingly complex; rather all the flavors are quite defined and readily noticeable...making its delicate balance all the more impressive.

M: Drinkability is the key here: it's light in body and dry on the back end, with only a touch of lingering sweetness. Carbonation is actually pretty low, allowing said sweetness to appear.

O: This is probably the best robust (hoppy) porter I've had. Everything's in good balance, yet the flavors stand out quite well. I could see this becoming a go-to porter.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2013 19:58:20 | More by ThisWangsChung
Photo of Fatehunter


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

Poured two and half fingers of head on the darkest brown colored body.
The aroma is roasted and burnt malt, candy corn and a little burnt wood.
The taste is roasted malt, touch of coffee and a little vanilla at the finish. Nicely balanced.
The texture is fizzy and crisper with moderate carbonation.
Well done.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2013 03:54:33 | More by Fatehunter
Photo of Darkmagus82


3.9/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a deep-deep brown color with a nice thick cream colored head of one finger. The head has an amazing level of retention, very slowly fading over time to leave an amazing level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is sweet and roasty. The biggest smell is of a roasted malt mixed with notes of chocolate and coffee. The sweeter smells are of a molasses and caramel and a tiny bit of a wood and pine rounding it all out.

Taste – The taste begins with a sweet molasses and caramel flavor with a good chocolate and roasted malt base. Some flavors of vanilla soon come to the tongue along with citrus hop as well as some other sweeter dark fruit flavors. A very light coffee and some nut come to the tongue more toward the end of the taste, combining with the rest and a newly encountered floral hop, which overall produce a nice roasty, sweet and lightly hopped flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – For a porter the body of the beer is on the average to slightly thinner side in terms of thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is on the average side. The carbonation balances the porter characteristics of the beer with the hop very well, but a thicker body may have been slightly more appropriate. Even with that said, overall the feel was pretty good.

Overall – A rather tasty and slightly higher hopped porter. A nice take on a porter.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2013 01:45:54 | More by Darkmagus82
Photo of ONovoMexicano

New Mexico

3.91/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a snifter.

The beer pours pitch black with abundant head. The head appears chewy and creamy and produces big air bubbles within. The lacing is abundant as well and sticks to the glass in thick patches. A beautiful looking beer. I am beginning to appreciate Anchor beers for their appearance alone.

The aroma is deep, chocolate and caramel malt with coffee drifting in and out.

Tastewise, the beer has a bit of smokiness, sweetness reminiscent of maple, and coffee and bitter chocolate undertones hit the palate towards the end. The beer drinks smoothly and has a good creaminess to it, with little to no bitterness.

I am once again impressed by Anchor Brewing and find they have made a great porter. This is one I'd encourage all to drink.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2013 18:06:00 | More by ONovoMexicano
Photo of Private_Beer_Tongue

New York

4.75/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I Just Cannot see anyone not liking this Porter, everything happening about this beer is just done right, silky, Rasiny sweet perfectly balanced bitterness beautiful head on the pour, this is one of my weekly "Staple" brews I cannot go a week without it!

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2013 01:36:24 | More by Private_Beer_Tongue
Photo of FLima


4.26/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Reviewing this back again more carefully.
Deep black color with a thick caramel three finger head with great retention and leaving laces. Hard to beat.
Nice aroma of roasted malts, wood, piney hops, molasses and dark fruits.
Very original flavor, quite hoppy for the style but fits perfectly. Notes of earthy hops, coffee, pine, molasses, pepper, plums and licorice. Hints of dark chocolate, oak and soy sauce. Smooth dry and bitter aftertaste.
Medium body with appropriate carbonation.
Classic beer. This is an improved porter, more complex, flavorful, and hoppy but still smooth. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2013 01:05:46 | More by FLima
Photo of usechopstix4soup

New York

3.66/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured straight into pint glass, appearance looks like the standard porter.

Smell was unattractive to me at first, it was very different from porters I usually taste or enjoy. To me, the aroma is metallic, fruits, and butter.

This porter is livid with fruit, strong flavors of plum and dates. Lasting impression of blueberry and plum once the beer is swallowed. Very different from the typical porter and definitely took me by surprise.

Thin bodied for a porter, goes down easy. Body is like a juicey feel, not too thick but is downed easy enough.

Definitely an unexpected beer, looks like a porter but the elements of fruit definitely is enough to make it not a porter in my opinion. Depending on your tastes, you might like the change.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2013 17:16:09 | More by usechopstix4soup
Photo of KYGunner


4.26/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Ain't no ruby hue here, this Porter is jet black and had an immensely thick head that crowned above the glasses edge.

The scent has dried fruits such as prune and plum but there's a mahogany woodsy scent as well. Deep cherry couples with chocolatey malts giving the chocolate covered cherry aroma a nice ease.

The flavor is thick and full with deep chocolatey undertones. Dried fruit sweetness, prunes and cherry, cover the malt flavors. The flavors are hefty and alive and make this a superior Porter.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2013 23:38:30 | More by KYGunner
Photo of CalgaryFMC

Alberta (Canada)

4.36/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours deep dark brown, almost black, with four or five fingers of durable coffee colored head. Aroma is dark fruity malts, more malts, and maybe a whiff of floral and earthy hops. Nice sweet malt complexity in the aroma, and the taste doesn't disappoint. Raisins, dates, cherries, some milk chocolate, coffee, and cola flavors but the dark fruits carry the day. The mouthfeel is silky smooth and a bit chewy, some hop bitterness on the finish but this beer is a vehicle for fruity malts, with the hops just keeping things from becoming too syrupy. Nice example of a "robust porter" from the BJCP style guidelines, almost approaches a sweet stout in flavor if not in body. A touch of bitter grain lingers on the palate. This could be my favorite Anchor beer. Its quite consistent from batch to batch, maybe the hops are more pronounced on rare occasions. Malt complexity along a sweet vein (check out Brekel's Brown for a different take on malty complexity).

Serving type: bottle

09-09-2013 01:54:52 | More by CalgaryFMC
Photo of Dave1999

North Carolina

3.93/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with a large off white head.

The smell is malty and dark fruits.

The taste is dark fruits and sweet malts.

The mouthfeel is pretty light with medium carbonation.

Overall a pretty easy drinking flavorful beer. This is one you could drink a few of.

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2013 01:39:12 | More by Dave1999
Photo of gutbucket2

United Kingdom (England)

3.6/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

355ml bottle bb42014 ap: dark brown, immense head with large and small bubbles. sm: faint treacle/molasses. ta: molasses and herbal. mo: medium, lingering treacle and molasses. ov: pleasant 'soft' dark beer with sugary taste. Quite different to other porters.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2013 12:23:38 | More by gutbucket2
Photo of archyquaffer


4.35/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into a shaker. A medium pour produces 1/2 inch of a pale tan head with frothy bubbles that dissipates and sticks in wispy strands to the sides of the glass. The color is very dark brown that requires a strong light source to see through.

There's definitely a fruitiness in the smell/taste strongly suggestive of ripe plums, figs, and dates, with an aroma and taste very much like a good port wine. In between are accents of molasses, brown sugar and spice. The hops lend an earthy and slightly floral bitterness.

This beer is a fine example of complexity achieved mainly through the malt, with hops as a side dish rather than the main course. The beer is also very affordable, at about 4.50 a bomber in my town.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2013 04:36:53 | More by archyquaffer
Photo of barczar


4.14/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque onyx with a frothy tan head that lingers.

Roasty malt, chocolate, toasted nuts, and dark berries form the initial aroma, with tart cherries and licorice adding complexity. Hops are earthy and a touch floral, but subtle.

Dark cherries underlie a backbone of slightly charred malt. Notes of chocolate and tar surface mid palate, carrying into a fairly dry, nutty, slightly bitter finish. Roast malt dominates. Hop presence is minimal.

Body is fairly full, with moderate carbonation and light alcohol warmth.

Very roasty, with chocolate malt taking a secondary role. Complex malt profile. The dark fruit notes are nice.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2013 18:42:21 | More by barczar
Photo of joaopmgoncalves


4.53/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A: Very dark opaque brown with a consistent, big, creamy beige head.
S: Hoppy and roastiness coming from the dark malts.
T: Caramel, yellow sugar with a balanced bitterness.
M: The right carbonation that created the creamy head is here as well to perform a fantastic mouthfeel. It goes from sweetness to bitterness once you sip. The palate doesn't even dry but it creates a awesome feeling of freshness after the sip.
O: For my first Porter, I've chosen one that's considered one of the best. It's said that its mouthfeel and inner-mouth behavior is complex but I find it incredibly simple. Minimalisticly simple. For sure, one of the best beers I've ever had.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2013 19:06:30 | More by joaopmgoncalves
Photo of puboflyons

New Hampshire

4.43/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the 25 fl. oz. rounded stubby bottle marked 238. Sampled on July 29, 2013.

The pour is deep black, opaque, and with a foamy, lingering beige head that leaves plenty of lacing on the glass.

The aroma is full of dark malts, maybe molasses, butter, and a subtle earthy hop note waving to me from the backside.

Full body with a creamy texture.

The taste has a pleasant sweetness at the beginning and then there is this wonderful bitterness that bounces forward from left field. It ends rather dry. What a nice Porter.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2013 18:11:01 | More by puboflyons
Photo of boilermakerbrew


3.89/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A- Pours a very deep brown to black color. Big, 3 finger head with a slightly violent pour. Tan to chocolate brown head that retains and laces very well. Body is opaque and dark.

S- Dark malts with a slight sweetness in the scent. Slight acidic, soy sauce like flavor on the nose. Some good, lighter chocolate malt notes.

T- Just like the scent. Starts with semisweet chocolate malts and a hint of darker stuff before moving quickly into a muddled soy sauce-like flavor. The flavor tastes somewhat like oxidation, but also reminds me of a bock, with a dark fruit flavor component. Ends with a lingering dark fruit flavor.

M- Light, yet smooth across the tongue. Lower on the carbonation scale. Easy drinking, and reminds me of a German lager as far as feel goes.

Overall, another very solid offering from Anchor. Classic look in the unique;y shaped bottle. Smooth and easy drinking, this is a great everyday choice for a porter.

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2013 02:23:03 | More by boilermakerbrew
Anchor Porter from Anchor Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 2,721 ratings.