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Saku Estonian Porter - Saku Brewery LTD

Saku Estonian PorterSaku Estonian Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
82
good

55 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 55
Reviews: 45
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 14.76%


Brewed by:
Saku Brewery LTD visit their website
Estonia

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-10-2002)
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Ratings: 55 | Reviews: 45 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of artoolemomo
artoolemomo

Oregon

2.98/5  rDev -17%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Appearance- Pours up a good amount of head which looks as if it will have atrocious retention. The head is a weak, light beige while the body is a dark chocolate brown which shows hints of maroon when held up to the light. No lacing at all.

Nose- A lot of bubble gum from the bottle, some hints of roasted notes. The glass gives up a faint hint of bubble gum but not much else. This is not a auspicious beginning. Swirling the beer only reveals this aroma more. I hope this is not reflected on the palate.

Taste- Some bubble gum- this seems to pervade every aspect of this beer. There are some roasted malts but they are rather diminished. Some caramel notes. A slight, woody bitter finish with some spice and a small amount of heat. The flavor profile is rather thin and lacks presence- this, despite the fact, that I don't want any of the notes that I'm tasting to be more prominent. Enjoyable roasted malts start to appear on the finish but overall, this is a rather mediocre beer. I can never abide by a heavy bubble gum flavor. This beer is less offensive the quicker you drink it. It's not bad but it ain't good either.

Mouthfeel- Medium bodied- could use more heft for the style. Very little carbonation. This would work if this had more heft to it but instead it comes off as poorly carbonated schwarzbier at times.

Drinkability- Not really offensive, just not desirable. It's a beer I would drink quickly for the alcohol. Poor price point.

Overall- Very average. There are so many better Baltic Porters out there. I cannot suggest trying this unless you are a sucker (or ticker) for Baltic Porters.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2013 02:55:16 | More by artoolemomo
Photo of Reidrover
Reidrover

Oregon

3.63/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

50cl bottle from "Lifesource" Salem. $3.49 Pours a dark brown with a nice sized tan head. Dark chocolate,treacle and dark fruitiness abound in the nose. Smooth treacle,molasses taste, some hints of elderberry and blackcurrant,slightly salty,finishes with alcohol. OK palate good but average for style This is OK a good beer but sadly for me not a good Baltic.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2013 17:40:10 | More by Reidrover
Photo of Fatehunter
Fatehunter

Oregon

3.76/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured two and half fingers on a pitch black body. The head was quickly gone though.
The aroma is faint: roasted and black malt.
The taste is darkness with a sweet touch. Burnt and roasted malt with a sweet finish.
The texture is smooth with low carbonation.
It's lacking in the smell area but the taste is nice.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2013 05:42:43 | More by Fatehunter
Photo of JoshatTownHall
JoshatTownHall

Maryland

4.06/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

On Tap at Hellhunt Pub in Tallin, Estonia. Exceptional example of a Baltic Porter done right. As with all Saku and A Le Coq. brands this is the reason why Estonia is an awesome spot for beer snobs. Great beer for €2. It is hard to find a rendition of the Baltic Porter that sets the bar this high in the U.S. without paying $10 for an import. I miss Estonia!

Serving type: on-tap

01-27-2013 06:22:52 | More by JoshatTownHall
Photo of duracell
duracell

Quebec (Canada)

3.38/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500mL bottle shared with my father and poured into a goblet. Bought in Narva, Estonia. 6.9% ABV.

A - Pours a walnut color with red hues. A medium-size, off-white, head is formed and disappears quickly. 3/5

S - Aroma is a blend of malt (caramel and raisins) and a bit of hop (mainly herbal). 3/5

T - Malty taste with noes of toasted and caramelized grain. Hop is discrete, pourly aromatic but leaving a contributing to the bitterness. 3.5/5

M - Medium body with a rather smooth feeling. This beer is quite alcoholic leaving a semi-dry finish. 3.5/5

O - Without featuring a lot of complexity this Porter is quite pleasant and rather to style. Worth seeking it out! 3.5/5

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2012 22:33:37 | More by duracell
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler

Pennsylvania

4.33/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was another of my local trader's, tone77, many bottles to keep me from going off the deep end with CANs. I am always anxious to see what he has brought for me as he never disappoints.

From the bottle: "Dark Estonian Beer"; "Saku Porter is a full-bodied ultra smooth dark beer, brewed of pale, caramel and coffee malts, hops and Saku's own yeast. Aged to reach full taste. An ideal companion to a long winter night."

My pour created just over a finger of bubbly light-brown head with modest retention. Color was a deep dark-brown with caramel highlights at the edges, but otherwise not allowing light to penetrate. Nose was rich with dried dark fruits, molasses, tobacco, tar and even some alcohol heat. Phew! Mouthfeel was full, very carbonated, and the taste was very much of dried dark fruits, dark chocolate, coffee and molasses on the tongue. Finish was semi-sweet with all of the flavors just lingering like exhaling while smoking a cigar. If you are not going to drink this in the wintertime as the label seems to suggest, I would recommend it with a dark cigar, like a Maduro. Good stuff!

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2012 16:31:29 | More by woodychandler
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle,

A: Pours brown with a full off-white head, good head retention.

S: Has that full Eastern European dark sugar nose, a lot like Baltika #6. Big nose.

T: Not as sweet as the nose would suggest. Toffee, treacly flavours, slight hint of toast. Tasty.

M: Medium to full-bodied, thin finish, but brings a mild light sweetness to the end which I like. Frothy but crisp carbonation. Tad cloying at times.

O: I like Saku's regular lager and I like this beer, I like it more. Classic Baltic porter flavours, well priced as this style tends to be in this part of the world. Well worth a pickup. A satisfying strong pint.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2012 03:52:48 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of tone77
tone77

Pennsylvania

4.15/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a brown 16.9 oz. bottle. Has a black color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of roasted malts and dark fruits. Taste is good, roasted malts, coffee, dark fruits, a touch of hops. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall is a high quality beer worth seeking out.

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2012 15:26:30 | More by tone77
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
Beerandraiderfan

Nevada

1.78/5  rDev -50.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Brown and red colored beer, the red is a deep, dark red. Aroma was rough, sour plum, rubbing alcohol, prune, raisin, and more alcohol.

Taste, ugh, more alcohol and rancid dark fruit flavor. Was very bitter, but not the kind you get from hops, which were not able to be tasted. It was like 1/4 sweet, 1/4 bitter, 1/2 rubbing alcohol for the flavors.

As it warms, it is like, death, licorice flavors come out, which makes you think you are drinking Jagermeister, because of the dark fruit, licorice and face breaking alcohol presence.

I may have gotten a bad bottle with a ton of fusel alcohol. Or not, either way, this one was atrocious.

Serving type: bottle

01-30-2012 18:33:43 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of thekevlarkid
thekevlarkid

Maryland

3.48/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Out of a bottle this beer was a dark black color with one finger of khaki-colored head. The retention was good as a minute collar that left bands of broken lacing. The aroma was of chocolate brownies, baking chocolate, some fruity esters (bananas? Like chocolate-dipped bananas most notably and distinctly. Odd) and booze. The flavors were similar, dominated by the chocolate/banana/fruit combo followed by the boozy punch. The mouthfeel was average, the body medium and the carbonation average as well. Like the German girl I dated in my 20’s, this beer was strong and unique, yet predominantly forgettable.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2011 19:38:56 | More by thekevlarkid
Photo of jdhilt
jdhilt

New Hampshire

3.65/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a three-fingered light brown head that leaves a some lace. An opaque brown color. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Nose is strong caramel and flavor is roasted caramel and dark fruit. The higher ABV is hidden. 500ml bottle from Madden Beverage Saco, Me.

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2011 23:07:27 | More by jdhilt
Photo of MNJR
MNJR

Illinois

3.98/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark reddish brown color, tan head builds slowly and fades quickly. Really nice, rich smells of smoke, prune, and leather. Tastes fantastic: smoke up front, rich caramel, dark chocolate, and traces of light raisin/prune fruit. Finishes crisp and dry. A very good beer. Great balance in all the right characteristics, if not a bit too heavy on the fruit for some drinkers. For me it was great. I would buy again any time.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2011 00:11:03 | More by MNJR
Photo of dhvnu
dhvnu

Maryland

3.6/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A good baltic porter.

L- add a little black to its label; purplish-blacl

A-nice head retention of a light brown head

N - raisin raisin raisin

T-yes, jsut as it smells raisinous with hints of metallic notes

Ov.A. good beer, good baltic porter, it just lacks that metal-alcohol notes of good baltc porters, but very drinkable.

I recommend

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2011 04:12:49 | More by dhvnu
Photo of samie85
samie85

Illinois

3.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours an very dark caramel brown color with two dense fingers of mocha foam.

S-Smells of rich, dark fruit especially that of plums with with some earthy hops and burnt sugar.

T-Follows the nose upfront with lots of plum and finishes with a nice earthy, spicy finish.

M-Medium bodied with a certain slick character and prickly carbonation.

D-Highly drinkable in terms of ABV, but the richness limits how many of these I could have. Very solid Baltic porter though.

Serving type: bottle

04-06-2011 01:09:24 | More by samie85
Photo of JamnesCameron
JamnesCameron

Illinois

2.7/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured into a MJ tasting glass.

Pours a deep, deep garnet, with a big, three finger tan head. Head is slow to drop.

Aroma of licorise, sweet malt, no hop aroma to speak of. Dark caramel and light roast malt aromas.

Flavors of roasted caramel malt, anise. Medicinal. Cough syrup. No hop flavors. Slight alcohol burn. Strong licorise flavor as it warms up. Finish is medium, with anise lingering into the fade.

Mouthfeel is medium, sticky, slightly astringent.

Overall, not the best example of a baltic porter, a little harsh, lacks the smoothness of the best examples. Avoid.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2011 00:32:36 | More by JamnesCameron
Photo of EricCioe
EricCioe

Montana

3.18/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

This pours a deep brown with a two finger head that subsides to a ring and island for me with no lacing. On the nose there is a huge molasses and caramel combination up front. On the tongue the molasses is dominant with a toffee further back, and hiding under all that is just a hint of hop bite. In the mouth it's very chewy, too much to be enjoyable really. There is no enjoyable fuzziness here, and it's almost oily. The 16.9 oz serving size is about as much of this as I'd want to drink, mostly due to mouthfeel, but the price is pretty unmatchable. A decent beer, especially for the price.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2010 02:01:05 | More by EricCioe
Photo of thekanna
thekanna

Maryland

4.1/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Beautiful dark brown bordering on black with about 1 finger of tan head at pour; dissipates quickly and leaves no lacing. The beer divulges shards of blood red hue when held to strong light.

S: Distinct chewiness, strong caramel, molasses, and coffee taste. Like a veritable Werther's hard candy.

T: Dates, caramel, molasses, anise. Medicinal bite of hop bitterness at the end.

M: Pretty effervescent and highly carbonated for a porter, but this keeps things lively.

D: Delicious and complex, enjoyed the smell more than the taste but great overall.

Serving type: bottle

07-08-2010 03:53:03 | More by thekanna
Photo of bluejacket74
bluejacket74

Ohio

3.6/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours dark brown with about an inch tan head. Head retention is good, but not much lacing at all. Aroma is nice and malty, the brew smells like roasted malt, coffee, bittersweet chocolate, molasses, and some dark fruit. The taste is pretty much the same as the aroma, but the bitter flavors in this beer are stronger compared to the other ones, although the bitterness does ease up a bit as the beer warms up more. From the aroma I thought this would be a sweeter tasting beer, but that's not the case. Mouthfeel/body is medium, and is well carbonated. Drinkability is decent too, but not impressive. I think it's an OK overall brew.

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2010 21:52:33 | More by bluejacket74
Photo of tubacharlie
tubacharlie

Michigan

4.33/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fully poured down the side and the middle of a large glass stein, it produces a full head that slowly subsides, leaving a thin sheet of tiny bubbles and a nut-brown ring around the edge of the glass.

The dark ruby red-brown color has enough light penetration to reveal clarity.

Light molasses aroma with just a hint of malt, but a full mouth of hob bitterness at first bite. Lingering bitters in the middle of the palate with strong coffee and burnt toast notes, but a softer back palate release. Well carbonated enough for a little tongue tingling that deflects the decent alcohol presence (labeled at 7.5% abv). Overall a well-crafted Baltic Porter.

Although the label says it is "aged to reach full taste", it does not say how long and there is no Best Before or Born-on date. Would probably mellow if cellared for a year or two, but went down fine today with a spicy burrito carne asada con salsa habanero.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2010 23:53:11 | More by tubacharlie
Photo of baggio
baggio

Sweden

3.3/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle@home

A: Pitch black with a huge brown creamy head that vanishes a bit too quickly.

S: Molasses, Chocolate, Roasted malt, Dark bread, Smoke

T: Bitter coffee, Sugar, Molasses, Fruit, Tobacco, Caramel.

M: Body is quite think and has very low carbonation. A very sweet porter with a dry, ashy, aftertaste.

This is not a bad porter but it's too sweet for me. Paired nicely with some dark chocolate tho. If you're into sweet porters this might appeal to you!

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2008 17:36:02 | More by baggio
Photo of pmcadamis
pmcadamis

Illinois

4.35/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A huge four finger head looks brownish orange and frothy above a dark garnet hued brew that lets only a small amount of light through. This one looks like a dark ruby set in an adobe colored head....the combination of colors is really pretty. The head shows really good retention and never dipped below a solid finger. Lots of foamy lace sticks to the glass, and swirling brings the head back to two fingers!

S - Deep toffee notes lie on top of a deep bready bakery aroma. There are hints of milk chocolate, cola, Tootsie Roll pops, root beer, licorice, buttered toast, and oddly enough....peanut butter. Wonderful complexity here.

T - Toasty, woody, and very bready. Like freshly baked black bread with some melted butter and warm peanut butter too. Big time toffee and buttery diacetyls abound, along with some earthy mushroom funk notes that are really nice and add tons of complexity.

M - Full, but not as full bodied as I expected....more like medium-full. Gentle carbonation provides some tickle at first, but then quickly steps aside to make may for a buttery slick smooth and soft mouthfeel. The finish is very sweet with no trace of hops and only a very distant hint of alcohol.

D - A damn fine beer. I feel like that this would have been even better with a bigger body and a touch more ABV, but this is still a highly drinkable or slowly sipable brew. If nothing else worthwhile comes out of those crappy eastern European countries, at least they can make some damn fine porter!

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2008 15:49:46 | More by pmcadamis
Photo of emerge077
emerge077

Illinois

3.38/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a black, ruby-brown in the light. Rapidly subsides to a skim of white foam.

Smell is bready, malty, artificial sweetness.

Taste is big molasses, not much else. Slightly sweet and malty, a Doppelbock would fit the bill much better. Dried raisin/prune/plum in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is typical, neither dull or effervescent. Sweet malt seems to stick around, not entirely pleasant. Half-liter bottle is not the easiest drinker after several others.

Notes: "Reccomended serving at 60º - 65º" practically room temperature. Taste didn't improve for me at room temps...

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2007 03:58:53 | More by emerge077
Photo of scruffwhor
scruffwhor

Illinois

2.95/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a half liter bottle.

Appearance- Lack luster head with a perfect ruby color mixed with some barley grain color. No lacing visible.

Smell- A hint of acidity mixed with a hlaf roasted malt aroma. Almost like toasted polish rye bread.

Taste- A hint of green apples in such a toasty beer was a little odd. But there was some vanilinzucker to make up for it.

Mouthfeel- Some good carbonation, a little to acidic for a baltic porter.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2006 05:03:03 | More by scruffwhor
Photo of bark
bark

Sweden

2.95/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This bottle was bought in Estonia, the alcoholic content is 7.5% abvand it is labelled something like “vintage 2004”.

The colour is pitch-dark. The pale brown foam fills almost the whole glass, but it sinks down with a fizzing sound into a two finger thick head.

A roasted flavour dominates the smell, but there are also notes of candle grease, some spices, sweet malt and hints of alcohol and smoke. It is not 100% pleasant.

The carbonation is medium strong with small bubbles. The mouth feel is creamy.

The taste is unexpectedly mild and simple with roasted notes, some sweetness, over boiled vegetables (cabbage?) and margarine. There is no alcohol in the taste whatsoever. The aftertaste is somewhat unbalanced with a strong bitterness and roasted malt. It is surprisingly drinkable considering its strenght.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2005 22:20:41 | More by bark
Photo of GCBrewingCo
GCBrewingCo

North Carolina

3.2/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured deep amber brown, but not as brown as a normal porter, very translucent. The head was tan and tall and fell slowly to lace the glass.

The aroma was malty with a deep dark caramel impression and some slight chocolate notes, but a bit of cardboard.

The flavor was malty with the same deep dark caramel and dark fruits. A slight coffee flavor also emerged as the beer warmed on the palate. The dark caramel flavors also contained a chocolate presence and a fruitiness. Something in the flavor was not quite right, just a slight bit off and unbalanced.

The finish was just dry with lingering slight coffee, strong dark caramel and slight chocolate long into the aftertaste. The body was just above medium.

16.9 ounce bottle. Nothing I would seek out.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2005 23:34:54 | More by GCBrewingCo
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Saku Estonian Porter from Saku Brewery LTD
82 out of 100 based on 55 ratings.