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St. Peter's Old-Style Porter - St. Peter's Brewery Co Ltd

St. Peter's Old-Style PorterSt. Peter's Old-Style Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

515 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 515
Reviews: 363
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 12.99%

Brewed by:
St. Peter's Brewery Co Ltd visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Porter |  5.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-16-2002)
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Ratings: 515 | Reviews: 363 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Tupperwolf


4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As I pour from the distinctive St. Peter's yellow-green medicine bottle, I notice very little carbonated action, and begin to force-pour some head. To my general surprise, this method is effective in producing a nice, thin-bubbled porter-style tan head which leaves walls of tan Brussels lacing. The pour is a very light coffee-brown that condenses to be nearly black, but doesn't pretend to be a stout - it readily shows a ton of ruby when held up to the light.

I'll admit it - to this day I have been less than truly impressed with St. Peter's offerings, the few of which I've had. Their bottles make them worth buying and I consider them a reputable English brewer worth exploring. However, the smell of this brew points out that there might be more than meets the eye to St. Pete's - this lacks the somewhat bland, oxidized smells I've come to associate with their beers, and instead assaults the sense of smelll with a burly, roasted-coffe and raw, green, gritty barley nose.

The mouth is much, much more of the same - a very green, very roasted taste, as though someone cut down the barley before it had truly matured and threw the grains right over a fire. It's not smoky, but meaty, teeth-clenching, raw sustinance - it makes me want to pound my chest and roar in an unsophisticated, living-off-the-land way.

A lovely mouthfeel for a porter! It's just a little on the heavy side, beefed up with a lovely fluffiness that really creates an experience in the mouth. It's half-smooth, half-poofy, really nice to quaff.

Despite my lack of really particular details, the somewhat rambling order of this review illustrates my happiness with this porter. One of the very best I've tried from the UK side of the pond!

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2006 04:26:00 | More by Tupperwolf
Photo of 2KHokie


4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

One pint bottle. Black with ruby highlights. Sizeable tan head. The head really lingers and leaves behind nice lacing. Roasted malt, caramel, and a little wine in the nose. Low carbonation with a medium-thick mouthfeel. Flavor is similar to the nose, minus the wine. A little coffee, lots of caramel, some earthiness. It also has a dry bitterness that works well with the malty sweetness. Overall this is a very enjoyable porter!

Serving type: bottle

03-18-2009 22:19:44 | More by 2KHokie
Photo of gfreed


4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Keep in mind that if you're used to drinking excellent UK porters such as Sam Smith's Taddy Porter, or equally excellent American porters such as Founder's or Berkshire Drayman's, you'll need to adjust your expectations before drinking St. Peter's. The former are big, loud, avuncular porters that offer a muscular and meaty handshake; St. Peter's, on the other hand, is slender and subdued and understated. As porters go, it's a great beer on a lighter scale. The aroma has enough roastiness and coffee to immediately qualify for the style, but it's got the British twang of hoppy oranges without actually tasting like oranges. It's very smooth and a tad thin, but I didn't find it so watery as others have. I detected a touch of scotch in both the aroma and the taste, which was a pleasant addition. Subtle and well worth the price.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2010 22:40:55 | More by gfreed
Photo of Skidz


4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a medium-dark brown that finishes to a very dark brown with good amounts of red showing on the sides. A nice cream-colored head forming on top that quickly settles into a nice thin layer.

Smells of coffee, malts with some roasted notes too. I'm also smelling something slightly sweet, probably chocolate. Diving in...mmm, tasting the coffee/roasted grain flavors mixed with a nice sweetness that seems like milk chocolate; with a nice creaminess to it. Bitterness comes out in the end, but nothing to take away from the flavor that lasts and lasts. That bit of creaminess stays with you the whole way.

Excellent build, not like the usual porters I've had, but I really liked this, regardless. Nice medium-full body leaves you hungry for more. I could easily drink a good many of these. With the excellent quality and craft of this beer, as with all the St. Peter's bottles I've tried to date, comes a moderate-high price tag. I still recommend you try them all out for yourself, as they are definately worth any sum of money.

This beer makes my list of true winners.

Serving type: bottle

02-08-2004 03:58:08 | More by Skidz
Photo of neonbrown82


4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a good English porter. Pours to a dark brown, nearly black with a thin white head.

As soon as I popped the cap, a huge chocolatey aroma spewed forth from the bottle, along with that typical stock ale porter smell. Smells just how I would expect my English porter to smell. After reading some of the other reviews, I've found a few descriptors that match this perfectly: dried leaves and oaken vanilla smoothness.

The taste is just as good. Has a nice up front chocolate with a good mix of sweet, sour, and bitter. Very earthy with little roasted bitterness. This truly seems like an old-school blend of stock, pale, and bitter. Doesn't linger on the palate for too long. This is a highly drinkable English porter.

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2005 05:53:23 | More by neonbrown82
Photo of geexploitation


4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours deep brown, almost black, with mahogany highlights. Head is initially thick and stacked, but quickly dissipates to a dusting that nonetheless leaves sticky lacing. Big butter aroma, mixed with highly roasted malts and an impression of dryness. That dryness is not borne out by the palate, however. It starts off with sweet coffee, rich buttery cream, and a touch of dark fruit before finishing with a slightly sour note that's reminiscent of beers made on a Yorkshire square. Nicely complex, but not overbearing. Mouthfeel is thick and creamy, with plenty of residual sugars. Excellent for consuming many pints over an evening. Great session beer, and great food pairing beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2006 03:40:31 | More by geexploitation
Photo of Ricochet


4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Deep brown, light came through, very little lace and very little head

S: Malty, a little hops scent. Slight burnt scent.

M: 3 for 3. All of the St Peters beers that I've tried thus far have had an exceptional mouth. Just a little hops bitterness, just a little creaminess and a good wash with a leftover bitter finish. Again, this is what a porter should be.

T: Suttle chocolate/coffee with a backhanded hop slap. This is a straight forward English pub, order a porter and fish and chips beer beverage. It's malty profile with alcoholic touches, well, it's a very decent porter.

D: Another one that makes me feel like I'm having this in a pub. Very nice.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2007 06:54:08 | More by Ricochet
Photo of naterock


4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark red, almost black, with a fluffy tan head.
S: Dark roasted barley, very malty little hop. Entices me to taste.
T: Malty and Bitter at the same time. characteristic English Porter,
M: Not to carbonated, nice and smooth
D: This is why I prefer Porters to any other beer style, An absolutely remarkable Porter. A little pricey to drink a whole lot of it, but I will certainly enjoy a pint once in a while.

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2008 21:46:47 | More by naterock
Photo of BarleyMine


4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured this in a snifter with really no head to speak of (may not have gotten the proper tilt). The color is a rich, reddish brown. It smells great, with tones of sweetness, carmel, and noticable rasin/sherry like notes. The taste is sweet, also sherry like with notes of smoke and wood. The mouthfeel is a bit light for the flavor, but it's smooth and very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

12-05-2008 05:59:46 | More by BarleyMine
Photo of GarthDanielson

North Carolina

4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. The beer is a dark, creamy brown/black color with a thick, creamy pale colored head. The smell is a blend of malt, smoke, port wine, and sweet spices. Initial flavors of pale malt and slightly sour undertones, with highlights of bitter coffee flavors, and notes of earthy tones. There are sour undertones to the aftertaste, as well. The beer is full and smooth in mouth, with a nice, gentle finish. The sourness is gone by the end of the beer, and the taste remains pleasant in mouth between sips. A very easy to drink beer.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2010 03:11:16 | More by GarthDanielson
Photo of Erdinger2003


4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a big fluffy head that doesn't dissipate easily. The color is dark, but you can easily see light throughout the beer. Lacing is very very sticky. Smell is slightly hoppy with a little roasty background. English ales are harder to pick up after all the American beers. The taste is light with coffee roastiness. Very drinkable. Mouthfeel is smooth, but reminds me a little of the mouthfeel of water. Overall, I do like this brew and will have it again.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2007 14:15:01 | More by Erdinger2003
Photo of Pencible


4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This poured slightly hazy and very dark tan with no head. It smelled like dark chocolate and earthy roasted malt. Its flavor was a pretty straightforward blend of coffee bitterness and chocolate sweetness. It was slightly thick with a bit of carbonation and a mildly bitter aftertaste. Overall this was a basic porter, but it was good.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2008 22:11:26 | More by Pencible
Photo of aristeros


4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass. I've had several St. Peter's brews before. A careful pour yields less than a finger of white head and no lacing. RC Cola brown with decent clarity, reddish highlights in the light, and some carbonation visible. Looks good enough.

Smells of tootsie rolls and creamed coffee, big roasted malt smells. Roasted malts and strong black coffee up front, not too bitter, light caramel and tobacco near the back end.

Watery mouthfeel, surprisingly so. Was hoping for something more chewy. Smooth, complex, light enough to be sessionable, which is not the case for many porters, but not my favorite from this brewery.

Serving type: bottle

04-11-2010 02:35:49 | More by aristeros
Photo of udubdawg


4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours dark brown, but a lot of red shows through when held to the light and the clarity is excellent. Head is tan, a bit fizzy, but counter to my expectation upon seeing it pour, it lasts quite well and leaves quite a few spots of lacing.

Nose is fresh, earthy, and full of malt aromas. There's a pale, a toast, and a light chocolate. I don't think I get hops, but I don't mind a bit. It's a little like sticking my nose in my Maris Otter grain bin (What, you don't do this all the time too?). So far so good!
Sweet, toasty maltiness up front, firm bitterness behind, very drying in the finish and pretty clean. Mild coffee flavor. Again there is an earthy suggestion to the entire beer. Really well done. No diacetyl, but a touch of astringency.
Creamy medium full body. Carbonation is fairly low and there is little to slow the inevitable descent of the level in my glass. Time to fill 'er back up!

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2010 22:14:11 | More by udubdawg
Photo of fx20736

New York

4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a nonic, served at cellar temp.

Coal black with a thick, 3 finger fluffy khaki head that lingers. Nice lacing.

aroma is cocoa, espresso beans, vanilla, butterscotch with finally some musty hops and maybe a fain whiff of smoke.

mouthfeel is oily and not very carbonated.

taste: roasted malt, licorice, a rye like spiciness, butterscotch, a blend of dark roasted coffee, cocoa powder and a touch of smoke at the end.

Amazing beer, aroma and taste are complex and outstanding. I am beginning to love St. Peters brewery.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2013 19:03:48 | More by fx20736
Photo of bditty187


4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown in hue, black in the middle, shiny ruby around the edges; the color is attractive. A beige head topped the beer, it was a finger in height on a harder than normal pour. The head retention was fair, after a moment it faded to a foamy cap and then to a loose collar. The subsequent lacing was spotty. The nose is soft; it smells like chocolate milk with a dash of coffee in it. At the back are notes of astringent roast. Overall the bouquet isn’t very complex. However the smells are quite inviting. Then I smelled it again, after a few moments, and I got a suggestion of tobacco leaves, husks, and some earthy hops. Really working to pick up the details paid off. Lovely. Still, the potency is too low. The palate is awesome. This is a tasty porter. It is much roastier tasting that the nose leads on. Tricky bastard. There is a good amount of astringency, charcoal, charred husks, bittersweet chocolate, distant lactose sweetness, and earthy flavors. I am deeply impressed. The finish is long and charred. I bet this beer would really match nicely with some KC-style BBQ. The aftertaste is equally long, very roasty and even a little sweet. I really like this porter! It is not the most complex porter I’ve enjoyed but this is one of the yummiest. Sometimes there is nothing wrong with being a straight shooter. Medium/medium-full in body, low carbonation. The mouthfeel is pleasantly filling. It is a meal in a bottle. This is a very drinkable and agreeable beer. I really enjoyed it. My dear girlfriend Tara bought me a bottle in Iowa City because she liked how the bottle looked. Luckily I liked how the beer tasted! Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2004 02:25:21 | More by bditty187
Photo of BDTyre

British Columbia (Canada)

4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ranks up there with Fuller's. Note quite black in colour, with a very weak tan head. Smells like a good porter with a bit of a sour note. Taste is very similar to Fuller's: burnt chocolatey malt taste with hints of coffee. Again, a bit on the sour side but enjoyable nonetheless.

Some have commented on the thin mouthfeel. I'm just not detecting this. Yeah, its a bit thinner than Fuller's and it sure doesn't chug out of the bottle like a baltic porter, but is not weak.

This is probably my number two or three porter, and one I would buy again in an instant if it wre available to me on a regular basis.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2005 10:00:52 | More by BDTyre
Photo of daliandragon

North Carolina

4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have a special spot in my heart for St. Peter's. I remember drinking their organic ale a few years ago when I lived in this amazingly tiny, leaky apartment in South Lambeth near Stockwell station and was in a bad mood, which the beer helped out with. It's solid if you can find it.
Their old style porter pours middle dark and transluscent into my mug with a respectable tan head with big bubbles and a delicious sweet creamy malt base with yeast and a slightly eggy tone in the nose.
Coffee and dark chocolate malt line the taste which finishes in a round, full flavor with a mellow, lactose influenced mouthfeel that is settling and very easy to drink.
This is extremely drinkable and closer to a true milk stout than I thought was legal. Now I'm definitely pumped to go back to Suffolk Co. and check this place out.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2006 06:00:06 | More by daliandragon
Photo of Minkybut


4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into tumbler at 50 degrees, but wish I had started it at 55. Beer was very dark for a porter. It had a nice head that lasted almost long enough. It was a tasty belend of dark choc. and toasted malty hints. I really liked it and will most certainly purchase again.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2006 16:15:35 | More by Minkybut
Photo of botham


4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a very deep, ruby red with an immense light coffee colored head that dissipates slowly. the liquid is very clear for a beer this dark, and has a slight sediment on the bottom of the bottle. judging by the size of the head on this brew, this hops and malts should be packed in.

smell is a competition between fruity yeast aroma and roasted malts. upon familiarizing with the smell, a brilliant hop aroma shows through.

taste is very roasted up front, with notes of coffee, hops, and a touch of earthiness. a slight cream flavor shows though after a few sips, along with a bit of bready character from the yeast.

aftertaste is very clean. hints of hops and coffee.

mouthfeel is medium-heavy bodied, with a creamy texture and a very smooth finish. a good one to slosh around a bit before swallowing.

drinkability is suprizingly good for a heavier brew like this. very smooth in all areas, and not too harsh in the alcohol department.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2007 01:28:43 | More by botham
Photo of rborthwick


4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Traditional and beautiful.
Moderate head retention and lace.
Nice caramel aroma.
Very smooth and drinkable. Old style porter that is extremely drinkable. Not overly complex. A perfect quaff when you are just looking to relax and enjoy a good old traditional porter. I strongly recommend this beer. It has many similarities with Samuel Smith's Taddy Porter.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2007 23:27:30 | More by rborthwick
Photo of thierrynantes


4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer bottle (50 cl.), tasted in 2010.

Appearance : dark colour, with tan foamy head (not persistent).
Smell : roasted malt aroma.
Taste and mouthfeel : bitter coffee and chocolate with a sweet taste.
Drinkability : a good beer in the style English Porter (drink at cellar temperature).

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2010 16:47:26 | More by thierrynantes
Photo of RedDiamond


4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

St. Peter's is less than opaque with some dark burgundy color. It is clear with no sediment and features a relaxed smoked malt aroma, a scant head, and erratic lace. The taste is earthen, peaty, luxurious, yet not bombastic or high strung. In short, it is a country ale, not a high profile contender, and yet this rustic simplicity is at the heart of its appeal.

The finish is satisfying and bitter. The mouthfeel is gentle, inviting. On the whole, this simple ale comes across as relaxing and highly pleasurable to drink. The aroma really came alive towards the end.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2004 19:41:30 | More by RedDiamond
Photo of IceAce


4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: My agressive pour netted almost no collar of foam as the temperature in my keg box is much too cold (38°) for this Porter. I allowed it to warm to 48° and repoured into a beer-clean .5 liter pilsner and managed to raise one finger of very light tan head. The body of this brew is a deep, deep brown with excellent clarity.

Aroma: The nose is dominated by chocolate and earthy, musky malts. The rapidly dissapating head left a thin but consistent lacing on the glass.

Taste: What this brew lacked in appearance and aroma was more than compinsated by the taste. While the first initial trial provided little more than the chocolate promised by the nose, subsiquent samples provided a look into the making of this 'true' porter. The foretaste is dominated by the brightness of the young light beer...the finish dominated by the mature old ale blended with it.

Mouthfeel: As described by the taste...this is a complex brew with a wonderful malt presence backed up with enough mellow hoppiness (fuggles?) and perfect CO² balance.

Drinkability: A beer I would go out of my way to find...and a perfect session beer for those with discriminating taste and a deep line of credit.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2004 08:11:31 | More by IceAce


4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This porter comes packaged in a cool looking "medicine" bottle. It is old school for sure and aptly named as "Old-Style Porter".
The beer pours out a dark brown, mahogany color with some amber tint. A 1" creamy tan head forms and drops to about 1/2" for the rest of the ride down. Perfect lacing.
The aroma is a nice mild roast coffee. A little nuttiness and the good earthiness I love in a porter.
The taste is superb, a nice roasted malt, coffee with some sweet chocolate. Nuttiness in finish turns into nice bitterness. Mild hops.
Mouthfeel is creamy, just a little thin but very tasty.
This beer is extremely drinkable and I was very pleasantly surprised. Very, very good. Highly recommended!

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2005 03:28:49 | More by MUSHROOMCLOUD
St. Peter's Old-Style Porter from St. Peter's Brewery Co Ltd
87 out of 100 based on 515 ratings.