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Summit Great Northern Porter - Summit Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Summit Great Northern PorterSummit Great Northern Porter

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

509 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 509
Reviews: 286
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 11.52%
Wants: 11
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Summit Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ADR on 03-04-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 509 | Reviews: 286 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of AdmiralDiaz


3.88/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice dark brown pour that's just below borderline black. I didn't get much of a head here and what i got didn't last too long.
Smells more "burnt" than roasted if that makes sense. There's a bit of a coffee/earthy smell too it.
Pretty good taste, mostly earthy with noticeable hops and a bitter aftertaste of roasted coffee.
Pretty easy to drink due to it being on the lighter side of porters and a nice amount of carbonation. More than just a session drink, I would have no problem having a few anytime.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2009 04:03:40 | More by AdmiralDiaz
Photo of Strix


3.58/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark brown with decent head.

Smells roasty, toasty, and earthy.

Taste captures some, but not all of that, with a lot of roasted flavor and a slight hop bite. Slight chocolate and coffee flavors. Pretty standard porter taste for me.

Mouthfeel perhaps a bit weak for a porter.

This was pleasant enough, worth a try certainly. I'm finding most of Summit's stuff to be solid but not stellar.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2009 06:44:45 | More by Strix
Photo of nicktay


4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When I pour this beer out into my glass it pours a dark ruby brown with a very full head. Head retention is great.

Smells of caramel specialty grain, and very malty. The hops smell floral, I would say.

Tastes heavily roasted, definitely a chocolate malt. I can taste a slightly charred hint in the beer. The hoppiness is hard to detect and lingers very slightly after downing the first gulp. I really enjoy the flavor. Its nice and round.

This beer medium bodied, not too heavy.

In a sitting I could drink one more. Not too heavy though for a porter.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2008 00:33:13 | More by nicktay
Photo of NJpadreFan

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Summit- Porter

A- Deep brown/black with a thick heavy lacing head Good messy lacing.
S- Deep roasted coffee beans, oatmeal, and caramel.
T- Good medium roast coffee, oatmeal, and caramel malt with a nice creamy touch of vanilla.
M- very smooth creamy malt gives way to a foamy milk chocolate bitter slight bitter finish.

Overall- Delicious! Huge flavors and very smooth. Highly recommended.

Serving type: on-tap

12-27-2008 23:55:40 | More by NJpadreFan
Photo of wgarton


3.55/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Served in a mug. Dark brown with a finger width head that parted after a few sips but remained on the outside of the glass throughout. An enjoyable view.

S: Pleasant toasty smell evocative of chocolate and coffee.

T: Standard for the style. Dry in the mouth with chocolate notes. Mild balancing bitter taste.

MF: Sits well in the mouth, average feel for the style.

D: Overall, a good example of the style. Not my favorite of the style, but certainly a worthy choice.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2008 01:58:35 | More by wgarton
Photo of steveh


4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A -- Inky black with ruby highlights when held very close to the light. Very nice thick, tan head.

S -- Earthiness with roasted malt and coffee character.

T -- Roasted malts with coffee and chocolate charcter and an earthiness back, finishes with burnt, patent malt tones and a bitter aftertaste from roasted malts and hops, though not unappetizing.

M -- Medium body with a smooth, almost syrupy mouth-feel.

D -- Very good -- everything you'd want from an American style/Robust Porter.

FYI -- Ba is saying this is 4.9, but Summit's site marks it at 5.6.

Serving type: bottle

12-05-2008 22:18:03 | More by steveh
Photo of MacDomer


3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Darker brown, with tones of amber/ruby. One-finger + tan foam head. Lacing is on the lighter side.

S - Roasted malts. Hint of coffee and cocoa. Pleasant.

T - Nice malty flavor, some creamy notes with the cocoa and coffee coming through. There's a nice earthiness as well as slight smoke.

M - Moderate carbonation. A bit tingly on the tongue, maybe because I find this to be on the thinner side for a porter, and the carbonation seems more pronounced. Dry finish.

D - A tasty porter indeed. Low ABV means that you can easily have a few of these. Not my favorite example, but quite good for the style.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2008 05:10:14 | More by MacDomer
Photo of jjanega08


3.38/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A= Pours a dark brown/amber color with a beige head and good lacing very nice looking beer
S= coffe notes, a little chocolate. And toasted malts typical of an american porter
T= same as the nose coffee and malt fusion is the prodominant flavors with small chocolate notes
M= smooth and light for a porter
D= decent, a nice beer to sip on with food there's really not a whole lot that's special about this one. Not one of my favorite porters

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2008 21:05:46 | More by jjanega08
Photo of Bjshelak


2.65/5  rDev -30.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This will be my first beer review. I may be somewhat unequipped/inexperienced at this point, but everybody starts somewhere.
Poured in an old fashioned (I lack proper glassware for the time being). Pours a dark, fairly thick, muddy brown with a thin beige head. Good head retention.
I don't detect much of a nose. What little scent I can guess at is that of weak coffee.
Starts off with some slight bitterness that softens back into the weak coffee with a little bit of hops (I'm guessing) poking its head out midway through. Coffee becomes more pronounced as it turns dry and the flavor finishes. The aftertaste lingers with a light coffee bitterness.
I picked this up as another stop on my MN/WI beer tour, and I'm planning on working my way through the rest of Summit's offerings soon. This was not a great beer to start with though. Given my memory of the Pale, Winter, and Scandia, this is definitely one of their weaker offerings. I've never been a coffee drinker, but I've enjoyed the flavor enough in stouts before. Here it's just too weak and there's not much else going on.

Edit: I went into this review having already tried this beer. My review may be somewhat colored by previous experience and should be taken with a grain of salt. If the rest of the reviews are any indication, this beer is well worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2008 06:11:47 | More by Bjshelak
Photo of zeff80


4.1/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a dark brown color with hints of ruby. It had a small, cappucino-like head that left trails of soapy lace.

S - It smelled of roasted malt, coffee, chocolate and some subtle floral notes.

T - It tasted of burnt toast maltiness, coffee, bittersweet chocolate and a bitter hop kick.

M - It was creamy,smooth and soft. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a very good and easy drinking porter.

Serving type: bottle

10-04-2008 22:55:16 | More by zeff80
Photo of crayphish


4.03/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

With the recent nasty early autumn weather I though it would be time to get back into some darker brews. This porter pours a intense ruby black. A nice tan head adorns this brew, lots o sticky lace. I smell coffee and chocolate. Its not overwhelming, but determinable. Taste is solid. Big roasted malt base with coffee and spicy hops evening this brew out. A pleasing burnt bitterness.The hops are more apparent as they dry this finish nicely. My mouth is left clean and wanting another taste. I really enjoyed this brew. At 4.9% its very drinkable. This will become a staple.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2008 04:46:15 | More by crayphish
Photo of Greggy


4.35/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a 2 finger head that is pretty slow to recede. I get some nice lacing rings as I drink down this beer. The body is almost black but light can just be seen through it.

S- Very dark, dry chocolate, cream, vanilla, and a nice hoppy edge. Almost Surly Bender-esque but sans hops.

T- Some very dark chocolate, coffee, nice, cream, vanilla and graham cracker notes come through before a dry finish.

M- Carbonation is low and the mouthfeel is nice.

D- @4.9% this is sessionable, but still in "night-cap" territory. I am a huge fan of bender and this might be a more affordable substitute. I plan on having this again in the near future.

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2008 04:11:12 | More by Greggy
Photo of Pauly2X


3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Opaque black with a quarter finger head.

S- Smooth roasty malts with hints of chocolate and earthy hops.

T- The sharp roasted bitterness hits you right away but mellows out quickly. A mellow slightly chocolately middle then lends way to a smooth, slightly dry hop finish.

M- Pretty smooth, carbonation is just a little sharp.

D- Pretty drinkable for a beer with this much character.

Although I'm not a huge porter fan, I really enjoyed this. There's enough character here without being overpowering.

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2008 00:33:48 | More by Pauly2X
Photo of Kyle987


4.22/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Great head and very dark, opaque brown color. Great retention and lacing. Aroma is great - strong and extremely malty. Flavor has a lot of malt as well but also some hop bitterness. Also some strong hints of chocolate and coffee. Great mouthfeel, with perfect carbonation, good weight - significant and heavy. As drinkable as a porter could be.

Serving type: bottle

08-30-2008 02:28:54 | More by Kyle987
Photo of mentor


4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a half finger brown head over a very dark red-brown liquid. Smells potent american hops with drying chocolate and coffee. Burnt nut. Hops are grassy, citrusy, and work very well with the malt character.

Tastes strong hop citrus and pine hop flavor with noticable rounded grassy hop bitter. Underlying malt sweet dries quicky due to dark grain driness, hop grassiness, and drying carbonation. Dash of sour, likely from black patent. Bit of carbonation sting melds with the sour nicely. Md thick mouthfeel, which is a great way to keep sweet on the tongue and keep the beer from being entirely too dry. Not overly complex, but well crafted and enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2008 07:00:50 | More by mentor
Photo of kinger


3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Wonderful beer, represents the good qualities of a well made porter. Pours a midnight black/super dark brown with a thick tan head. Lots of lacing clings to the sides of my glass as I drink this. The aroma is thick with roasted malts, a strong coffee scent is given off. Tons of roasted malts create an explosive rich flavor. The noticeable hops really help balance out this porter. The mouthfeel is somewhat thin, but adequate for full enjoyment of this beer. I thoroughly enjoyed a couple of these, and look forward to enjoying a couple more.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2008 19:33:43 | More by kinger
Photo of beerkittycat


4.22/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Pours deep brown with ruby highlights and a gorgeous creamy tan head that lingered until the last sip. Aroma is very subtle with notes of chocolate and roast malts and an interesting hop profile of grass and flowers. Probably a combination of English and noble hops. Taste is bursting with that wonderful malt character of chocolate and roast with a hint of smoke. Moderate hop bitternes balances the sweetness with the same interesting hop flavors as described in the aroma. Kind of reminds me of a grassy-wildflower summer meadow. What this beer lacks in a thinner mouthfeel actually makes up for it in drinkability. I could have several of these, especially at under 5% ABV. However, I would classify this more as an English porter rather than American due to its thinner body and hop profile. Anyhoo, this beer is tasty and I look forward to the next one.

Serving type: bottle

07-30-2008 17:21:41 | More by beerkittycat
Photo of CaptainIPA


3.73/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

P: Hand-pulled from the beer engine @ Sugar Maple on 6-6-08 and presented in a Summit Brewing Company pint glass.

A: Pours a dark tobacco with a creamy, one-finger, khaki-colored head that doesn't linger.

S: Earthy: toasted malts and yeast with a hint of toffee.

T: Opens with roasted malt and notes of coffee, caramel and chocolate. Finishes dry with a moderately hoppy bitterness.

M: Medium-bodied with a smooth, firkin-conditioned mouthfeel.

D: Good, a very easy-drinking American Porter.

Serving type: cask

06-07-2008 20:11:42 | More by CaptainIPA
Photo of botham


3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pub glass. pours deep brown, almost black, with three fingers of tan head with decent retention, about four minutes. moderate lacings.

aroma is roasted, with notes of cofee, chocolate, and a hint of an earthy quality, which gives the brew an aged character. nicely proportioned.

taste is malty, with the familiar notes of roasted malts, caramel malts, and chocolate malts. a pretty standard american porter, with a pleasant profile. the cofee is present, but not overdone, which seems to be a mildly common occurance for the style.

mouthfeel is full bodied with a smooth and creamy texture, and a malty finish of residual roasted malt and coffee.

drinkability is good. this is a smooth and mellow porter. not too rich and not too thin, this brew embodied the middle of the road in porters, but is still damn drinkable. cheers!

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2008 02:23:27 | More by botham
Photo of supercolter


3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This was a pretty decent porter. It looks very intimidating when poured as is has the motor oil look, without any head or lacing.
Smell and taste are very similar with dry coffee and a bit of bitter chocolate coming through. I would have liked a bit more hops as they were all but non-existant.
Mouthfeel is actually quite light.
Drinkability- this is a sipper, but goes down easy due to the light mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

04-20-2008 21:11:19 | More by supercolter
Photo of Contagion


3.05/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer pours a nice dark brown color with ruby accents. A nice tan quarter inch head formed as it was being poured. The head faded to a nice film on the top of the beer that seems to last. There is some lacing on the side of the glass.

The smell is an overpowering combination of Coffee and Chocolate. You can also detect a faint scent of dark roasted grain. I don't know if it was the actual alcohol content or the combination of smells described, but there was a faint smell of alcohol. The taste starts with a bitter baker's chocolate flavor with a hint of coffee. There is a slight bitter hop finish to it. The aftertaste is bitter, but not over powering.

It is a medium bodied beer. The combination level seems a little high for a porter, but it's nothing to complain about.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2008 00:33:36 | More by Contagion
Photo of tempest


3.78/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

In this age of barrel-aged imperial rye porters, this is just a classic American porter. It looks good with a dark brown body and tan head. The aroma is of dark, dry roasted grains. And the flavor adds a touch of chocolate to the mix. The balance is spot on, dry and drinkable, yet still a bit sweet. This is a good session beer, a simple one, but tasty and it won't knock you off your stool.

Serving type: on-tap

04-04-2008 05:13:37 | More by tempest
Photo of toolbrew


3.15/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured nicely into a pint glass. Dark brown, opaque, with a light brown head. Lots of lacing.

The smell dind't have much to report. Maybe a slight, very slight chocolate flavor. Smells like your average malty porter.

Good malty flavor, and a great body for a porter.

Nice mouthfeel - not to watery or carbonated. Goes down easy and sits well.

I would have a couple of these per sitting.

Bought this on a whim to try it out. Haven't had many Summit beers before.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2008 06:06:28 | More by toolbrew
Photo of BigRedN


3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured into a pint glass from the 12 oz bottle. The beer is very dark brown, near black. My pour produced a thick, milky brownish head about 1/2 an inch thick. Leaves patchy lacing.

Smell: Dominated by roasted malt (burnt chocolate, roasted coffee beans). No hop related aromas.

Taste: Starts off with a blast of the roasted malts that were present in the scent. Surprisingly this one finishes with a slightly spicy/hoppy bitterness at the end. I guess I would describe it as bitter sweet.

Mouthfeel: Medium in body, good carbonation, lively. Has a bit of a dry finish.

Drinkability: A friend borught back one six pack of this from a weekend trip to the Twin Cities area because he knew I liked dark beers. Very much appreciated, I'll enjoy each one. This is one Summit beer I had not seen in the area, if I had the ability to get this more often I would. Low ABV, drinkable, I could session with this in the winter months.

Serving type: bottle

02-27-2008 04:09:04 | More by BigRedN
Photo of mnstorm99


3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice dark brown (almost black pour with a small tan head that stays pretty well.
Aroma is a little short, but I can detect carmel, chocolate and coffee.
Taste is very good, nice hints of chocolate and coffe, with just a nice clean malt base.
Great creamy smooth mouthfeel, this is a good beer overall, and very drinkable. good for a cold day sitting in the house watching the snow fall.

Serving type: bottle

02-08-2008 21:03:44 | More by mnstorm99
Summit Great Northern Porter from Summit Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 509 ratings.