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General Washington's Tavern Porter - Yards Brewing Co.

General Washington's Tavern PorterGeneral Washington's Tavern Porter

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

509 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 509
Reviews: 251
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 12.01%

Brewed by:
Yards Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
English Porter |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Detailed in a letter from the General to his officers during the war, Washington’s recipe employed molasses to aid fermentation and give rich caramel notes to this robust, roasty ale. The recipe reflected his admiration for Philadelphia-style porters, especially those brewed by Robert Hare (whose original brewery stood just blocks from where ours is now). Our Tavern Porter, inspired by Washington’s, is dark, smooth, and complex with just a hint of dried fruit in the finish.

(Beer added by: guinness33 on 09-30-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 509 | Reviews: 251 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of jtierney89

New Jersey

2.65/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a deep deep amber color with noticeable clarity for the darkness. Big 2 finger off white head. Nose has those classic english scents. Very earthy with touches of barnyard, slight minty hop presence. Head eventually subsides to a half finger lace with pretty good lacing.

Tastes of peat barley and coffee with a very minor hop presence. Beer starts big and malty but thins out kind of watery on the back end. Flavors dont linger too long which is good cause they arent fantastic. Like a weird thin smokey chocolatiness. Like having a BBQ in london on a misty day.

Theres a bright fruit sweetness somewhere in here if you look for it. Eh.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2012 03:55:50 | More by jtierney89
Photo of BeerLover99


3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: blackish brown/crimson shimmers
trace tan head, patchy lacing

S: nutty, caramel, malt

T: roasted malt/mild bitter finish

M: med/heavy body, smooth/mild chewy

O: Yards has done it again!
I need to try all of their beers.
Love the historical angle and wide
variety of styles.


Serving type: bottle

01-11-2012 17:20:37 | More by BeerLover99
Photo of DefenCorps


3.6/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle, buck 99 from the Village Pump.

Near black with a dense, brown head that falls off to a ring rather fast, leaving patchy foam. The nose is decent. Moderately hoppy with a rather herbal and mildly floral nose, there's some roast, a mild grainy acidity, some cocoa, coffee grounds and some vanilla. Moderately fruity as well (in a yeasty way), with a nose suggestive of toffee and peaches, this aspect is interesting.

The palate opens with rather excellent flavors ruined by excessive carbonation. Robustly roasty with a pleasing blend of grainy bitterness and acidity, complemented by flavors of cocoa, a little caramel and fruity yeast, this is quite an enjoyable porter. Very dry, this beer has flavors of unsweetened cocoa. Drying on the finish with a mild bitterness, this beer is light in body, quite excessively carbonated, leading to a not wholly welcome carbonic acid bite and lightening the body to the point of wateriness. Despite it, though, there's a nice fruitiness that also lingers. The alcohol is fairly well hidden too. All told, a pretty decent and enjoyable porter. Allowing the carbonation to settle down greatly enhances the moutfeel, and I'm adjusting my score up by half a point to reflect this improvement.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2012 03:12:06 | More by DefenCorps
Photo of WMEugene


3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a thick black with a thin tan head (with excellent retention) and significant lacing.

S - Sweet bready smell. Molasses. Some roasted malts with coffee and cocoa flavors present. Some alcohol is noticeable as well.

T - Sweet bready flavors and roasted malts. Molasses and brown sugar are present. An interesting taste for a porter.

M - Thinner in feel than I expected, but still medium bodied. Smooth drinker. Nice carbonation.

O - I found the Tavern Porter to be an interesting take on a porter. It's sweeter than most normal porters, which is probably attributable to the molasses. An interesting colonial recipe that is timeless.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2011 00:31:17 | More by WMEugene
Photo of Stinkypuss


4.38/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

General Washington's Tavern Porter
Yards Brewing Co.

Appearance: Very dark brown with a mocha cream head with good retention. This beer has legs, and lace...hey now...

Smell: Molasses, dark breads, alcohol. Alittle bit of cocoa. Roasted malts. Coffee.

Taste: In the flavor, brown sugar, maple syrup, molasses, coffee, faint spruce note. Astringent roasted malt mixes well with the sugars. Chocolate emerges again. If one was a simple town-person in Washington's time, I can see the quality of this beer developing an army of loyal followers. Hell, I want to grab a pitchfork and hit the streets right now! This beer is delicious!

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, smooth, creamy feel. Carbonation is solid. Flavors of coffee and vanilla linger into the glorious finish.

Overall: This is impressive porter. If Washington brewed a similar beer, he truly was the right man to lead this newborn nation. I wonder if he sold six packs?

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2011 06:46:09 | More by Stinkypuss
Photo of Morey


3.53/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle with "Bottled on 081211" stamped on the back neck of the bottle. Hooray for Yards!

Pours a very dark brown (almost black color). The beer is topped by one fingers worth of cream colored head following a fairly aggressive pour. Foam has now settle to a very thin layer with some bubbles remaining around the edges of the glass. Pretty decent stick.

Aroma: Hints of chocolate, acai, plum, and molasses.

Taste: Rounded malt flavor/body up front. Very light on the roasted and smoky flavors. I'm getting more rich and sweet flavors. There's a mild bitterness about midway. Finish is slick and wet with a bit of lingering sweetness.

Medium (just barley) bodied with a slick mouthfeel. Soft carbonation.

A decent Porter overall. The 7% is hidden extremely well. Nice job George.

Morey's Bottom Line: This falls a bit short in today's market, but I wouldn't have been first in line back in the day. If this is what our leaders were drinking then, what happened! Shame on the BMC's drinkers of today!

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2011 21:09:51 | More by Morey
Photo of JohnFatAss

New Jersey

4.28/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a pleasant surprise this beer was.
Had on tap at my local bar.

It is the best porter I have ever had.

It has an incredible creamy mouthful. Super smooth, rich and satisfying.

Taste is of roasted malts, bittersweet chocolate & molasses.

Goes down so easy you need to be careful.

Hope I can find this in six packs.
This is so good, I might even buy a case!

Serving type: on-tap

12-12-2011 00:46:47 | More by JohnFatAss
Photo of loveingminor


4.65/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a nice dark amber color. Definitely "porter" colored. Has a nice head.

Smell: Nice rich, roasted, porter smell.

Taste: Complex, rich, roasted. I don't really taste chocolate, but then again I'm not much for chocolate in my beer.

Mouthfeel: Not overly carbonated, but has a smooth feel.

Overall: I'm glad I picked this one. Can't have more than 2 in one night, but that just makes my stock last longer.

Serving type: bottle

12-05-2011 02:32:18 | More by loveingminor
Photo of Brambleman

North Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a pint glass. Poured opaque black, with a slight reddish hue and a half finger mahogany foam head. It quickly settled and left some lace.

The smell is sweet malt, then the bitterness from the hops. Definitely some chocolate on the nose.

The taste is slightly sweet/malt(chocolate hints)...then bitter....just like it smelled. This is what a porter should be! Wonderful!

The mouthfeel was perfect for a porter...silky and smooth with light carbonation, but not sticky or syrupy.

This was a wonderful offering! perfect every day drinker of a porter!

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2011 01:02:51 | More by Brambleman
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

3.55/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

dark brown with a creamy tan head. Nice lacing on top as well. Slow settle revealed some nice side glass lacing and a small pillow of tan on top.

The aroma was steep with roasted malts. Rich notes of caramel and molasses. Light grain touches and a bit of a herbal note persisted. Nice robust flavor, rich and sweet with a dry finish. Lots of roasted malts and a classic coffee and chocolate profile. Smooth, mellow and quite nice

Serving type: bottle

11-14-2011 23:43:10 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of troysoy2


4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I've been impressed with Yards' beers in the past, and I expect their tavern porter will be no different. Poured into a pint glass, the head is a nice khaki color, maybe a finger, and has decent retention. The beer is black with the slightest hint of red poking through.

The smell is awesome, plenty of chocolatey malt. Sweet, yet thought-provoking. The taste doesn't disappoint. George Washington certainly knew what he was doing. There's a great balance between the malt and hops, a bit of chocolate, and hardly even a trace of the 7% alcohol content. The mouthfeel is exactly what I like in a porter. Creamy, not syrupy. Smooth, yet prickly. I think I could drink this one all night long if I had the chance.

I think if there's anything this beer lacks, it's a little complexity. The taste, while awesome, gives itself away almost immediately. But hey, if that's the only problem I have with this beer, I am most certainly ok with that. Delicious.

Serving type: bottle

10-23-2011 03:20:24 | More by troysoy2
Photo of AndyAvalanche


4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass. I'm sure both President Washington and Mr. Adams would approve! The pour itself comes out dark brown close to black. Lighter brown highlights when held up to the light. Off-white/tan head with excellent lacing. This is a very good looking porter.

Smell seems weak at first, but gets better as the beer gets closer to room temperature. Chocolate roasted and somewhat burned/roasted malts. A little bit of bready yeast, not much in the way of hops, somewhat smokey. A pretty straight forward and solid representation of the style.

Taste is solid, just as straight forward as the smell. Huge malt profile, darker more biter chocolate and slight hints of coffee. An over roasted/toasted, not quite burned taste. Some yeast is slightly detectable and a hope presence picked up in the flavor.

Good solid mouthfeel. It's medium/heavy with a good carbonation level. I find it pretty smooth and a slight creamy feel with a hint of smokiess as well. Nice drinkability too. I like it a lot, but liked it a little more on tap in Philly this summer, but I'll take it.

Thanks ericwo for the trade!

Serving type: bottle

10-19-2011 03:08:26 | More by AndyAvalanche


3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Packaged 2/10/11, consumed on 3/14/11. 12 oz bottle to pint glass.

A: One and a half fingers of dense, compact head. The texture is creamy, the color is medium brown and it lasts quite a while. The color is light for a porter but dark ruby brown nonetheless. Opaque except at the thinnest edges. Good to excellent lacing in sedimentary layering down the glass.

S: Malt forward with milk chocolate standing out among the caramel and molasses aromas. The hopping is appropriately light, incorporating a bit of grass and wood. The yeast brings about scents of dough, earth and recently conditioned leather.

T: In addition to the nose, brown sugar, toffee and light fruitiness in the form of alcohol soaked dates and raisins. Light lactose or souring milk qualities. Moderately sweet. Long lasting flavor.

M: Medium full body, creamy texture and a perfect level of carbonation. Gently effervescent.

D: George Washington was clearly the best brewer of the three statesmen. Or at least this beer was the best of the series and, for my tastes, the only one I'd buy again. I love the concept of Ales of the Revolution series, but they should be released seasonally or something. No one wants to drink colonial recipes year round.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2011 11:00:34 | More by FeDUBBELFIST
Photo of jdhilt

New Hampshire

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

Pours a three-finger light tan head that fades slowly to a ring leaving a good lace. Black color, no highlights. Light-medium carbonation and medium-heavy bodied. Baked chocolate nose and flavor is baked chocolate with some molasses. $3.00 for a 12oz bottle from Mount Vernon Gift Shop, Mount Vernon, VA.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2011 22:50:38 | More by jdhilt
Photo of Rifugium


4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Johnny Brenda's, Philly, PA

Another great selection from Yards, recreating G. Washington's old recipe. (Such a recipe does exist: see Mosher's book.) Pours a dark reddish-brown with a decent tan head that leaves a soapy lacing on the glass. Rich aroma that hit me before I even touched the glass. All kinds of sugars, caramel, toffee, molasses. This carries over into the taste without disappointment, rich and sweet, smooth and malty, with just a bit of coffee bitterness. Very nice. Heavy-medium body, and quite drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

09-17-2011 07:51:40 | More by Rifugium
Photo of Schmidts


4.38/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the bottle Pours black tan with a beautiful tan head that stays. Loads of laceing.
Smells of cherries and sweet chocolate and malts.
Tastes of Black cherrys and a little bitterness and then the malt flavor comes through and finishes with a nice hit of Alcohol. Creamy and smooth the Laceing is still there with a little bit of head.
Having worked at a Distillery right out of High school back in the day I enjoy that little hit of Alcohol taste.

Very Refreshing in your mouth and creamy smooth going down, a very drinkable porter and Yards has hit a home run with this one.
I give it an overall of 4.5 this is a very good Porter.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2011 21:57:08 | More by Schmidts
Photo of Eriktheipaman


4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black with rose hues. Tan head with amazing lacing.

The smell is sweet. A lot of dark fruits and a slight vanilla.

The taste is some dark cherries on the front with a roasty bitterness coming in on the back.

The mouth feel is the winner in this beer. Very velvety smooth and glides across your tongue.

Overall a pretty good beer and I would buy it again for sure.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2011 02:31:11 | More by Eriktheipaman
Photo of avaldivia


3.7/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Received in trade from Centennial. Poured 12oz bottle into a Belgian tulip.

A: Dark brown. A bit of a reddish tinge. Nice thick head with decent lacing.

S: Molasses. Roasted malts.

T: Nice roasted flavors. A good amount of hops actually. I like it.

M: A bit thin. Rather smooth. Good carbonation.

A nice porter. I would drink it again.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2011 04:14:24 | More by avaldivia
Photo of Chriscrundwell12


3.58/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Minneapolis Town Hall snifter.

A- Big 3 finger frothy beige head, dissipates to nice tan layer on top. Pitch black color with red hues coming of the bottom, nice lacing and retention, opaque.
S- Roasted notes, dark malt, slight coffee, bitter sweet aroma a hint of dark fruits (plum), brown sugar.
T- Roasted malts, slight coffee presence, slight sweetness in the background with the bitterness being upfront, interesting tasting beer, not bad.
M- Medium mouth feel, thin body, well carbonated, crisp finish.
O- Not a bad offering from Yards, glad to try it once but nothing to special or mind blowing, thanks Centennial for sending this and the many other Yards beers.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2011 06:15:06 | More by Chriscrundwell12
Photo of Veillantif


4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip at about 9 degrees C.

A: The label has a few flourishes of that nostalgia for an 18th century that never was, which we see often in Philadelphia. This should lower the expectations a bit: they wouldn't be appealing to history if it were THAT good, right? On the pour, it is chocolately opaque, and a fat finger of lacy head pops up and stays.

S: This is why I love beer: a rich aroma of toasty malt, with a just a hint of chocolate. Just beautiful.

T: Pretty damn nice, but not as rich or complex as the aroma. Also hoppier than the aroma made me think it would be, which lent another kind of bitterness than the chocolatey one.

M: I would add just a tad more carbonation to this: it goes down a bit too easy. But the aftertaste is pretty delightful for a long time.

D: I had planned to serve beer from a certain brewery based in Otsego County, NY to my friends from Europe when they arrive; I think I'll start them off with this instead. For one thing, its historic pedigree is unmatched (and one more reason to love this country); for another, it is an unusual pleasure to drink no matter what continent you're from.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2011 01:10:28 | More by Veillantif
Photo of MrOH


4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Black with reddish brown highlights, two fingers of khaki head, decent retention. Lots of lace.

Chocolate, brown sugar, dark fruits. Like really high quality dark chocolate.

Slightly ashy roast for a second in the beginning, then dark chocolate and fruit. Quite tasty.

Silky, heavier side of medium, low carbonation.

A really solid porter. I tend to like a bit more oomph from the black patent, but this is thoroughly enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2011 04:06:00 | More by MrOH
Photo of beerboy9960


3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Special thanks to Rhong187 for this generous extra. 12 ounce bottle poured in a pint glass.

A: Pours jet black with an inch of tan head.

S: Not strong aromas on this one. Some hints of roasted malt, smoke, bitter chocolate, and coffee

T: Good taste to this one. You detect the coffee/roasted malt flavors at first, followed by the smoke and bitter dark chocolate on the aftertaste.

M: Good mouthfeel to this also. Medium bodied with a creamy texture and a good amount of carbonation.

O: Overall this is a good porter. Thanks again to Rhong187 for the chance to try this one. Would love to have again if I have the chance.

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2011 04:10:16 | More by beerboy9960
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


3.18/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown appearance, not much in the way of head on it. Aroma was molasses and malt bomby.

Taste, pretty smooth. Velvet dark malt without a heavy roast presence. Alcohol seemed a little noticeable. More molasses. Sweetness tamed by the heavy malt bill. Surprising bitterness at times, didn't think the hopping would be anything more than nuanced. Despite the prevalence of molasses, the viscosity isn't way up there. Maybe some tobacco and leather to it.

The cost of this stuff is atrocious, what, is Washington's family getting royalties or something?

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2011 16:53:31 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

3.53/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer is dark brown with 1/4" of tan head that leaves a fair amount of lacing on the glass. The aroma brings some roast, malt, chocolate, and subtle alcohol. The flavor is decent, but relatively bland. The body is thin to medium, with solid carbonation. Unexciting, but unoffensive and easy to drink. I would drink a pint of this again.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2011 16:43:37 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of ColForbinBC

New Jersey

3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap, served in a pint glass

Appears an ink black with a thick, creamy khaki head. Sheets of lacing all the way down the glass. Aroma is of roasted malt, dark chocolate some dark fruits. Pretty straightforward aroma. The flavor profile opens up a bit. Dark chocolate, sweet dark fruits and dark roast with molasses and smoke. Medium feel, dry roast finish, a bit chalky, and a touch of coffee grounds lingering.

I liked this porter. A simple, straightforward take on the style, embracing the roots. Enjoyable from start to finish.

Serving type: on-tap

06-25-2011 18:59:39 | More by ColForbinBC
General Washington's Tavern Porter from Yards Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 509 ratings.