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Pig Iron Porter - Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant

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Pig Iron Porter
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very good

69 Reviews
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Reviews: 69
Hads: 186
Avg: 3.92
pDev: 18.62%
Wants: 1
Gots: 22 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant visit their website
United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-20-2002

A classic porter, dark and full of roasted malt flavor. Chocolate notes are well balanced by a slight bitterness.

37 IBU
View: Beers (363) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 69 | Hads: 186
Photo of jancona
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is the perfect porter - pours a dark copper color with beautiful khaki foam. Smells of roasted malts and the flavor is a perfect balance of sweet and roasted malt - a touch of Melba toast, bitter chocolate and Nilla wafer. So happy to have this locally!

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Photo of chinchill
3.54/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

On tap at the brewpub in Media, PA.
Pours with a red-brown body that has excllent clarity and highlights. Minimal head yet decent lacing.
Very good bitter-sweet balance. No sour or other off notes. Light smoke in the finish and aftertaste.
Medium body and carbonation.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.89/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

From 12/23/14 notes. Had on tap at the new location in Ardmore, PA. 4 oz. pour as part of a sampler.

Pours a deep brown, almost black color, with one inch of tan head and moderate carbonation evident.

Nose is awesome, sweet milk chocolate, roasted malts, bakers chocolate, vanilla, cream, toasted malts. Taste is a little more bitter, not as flavorful as the nose. Light body, a bit too thin, low to moderate carbonation evident.

Overall a nice porter with a great nose. A bit thin and the taste has more bitter dark chocolate, but would try it again.

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Photo of bmeehan
3.25/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I'm having a hard time remembering this beer, since it's been a few years, but I do remember it having a pretty robust flavor and a rich color. I also remember enjoying it, so that's good too.

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Photo of reebtaerG
4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Had on draft at Wilmington on 5/25/14

A-Pours a deep brown with a thin tan head. Good lacing.

S-The aroma is coffee, roasty, chocolate.

T-The flavor is identical but improves. The finish is bitter chocolate and coffee.

M-Mouthfeel gives medium body well balanced with low carbonation.

O-Overall a pretty impressive porter would have again.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

A smooth porter with a minimal amount of bumpin' flavor touches. Consistent and nice. I think that's where its strength lies is in its consistency and not so much in any unusual flavor settings. Carbonation and the bubble is high and biting. Pleasant enough.

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Photo of tobelerone
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Iron Hill Media.

Pours a very deep brown, nearly black color, with a cream colored head that settles slowly and nice lacing. Very traditional in the aroma; very roasty, charred malt, with hints of espresso, and a bit of herbal and floral hops underneath.

Traditional and old-school in flavor as well; it’s all about the roasted, slightly burned malt flavor, with suggestions of black espresso and bittersweet chocolate, and a subtle floral hoppiness lending additional bitterness to the picture. Buried underneath but slowly emerging as the beer warms is a hint of sourness not strong enough to be disconcerting, but that nonetheless feels like a slight flaw. The modest sweetness of the beer dries up almost completely in the finish.

Medium bodied and carbonated, with a decent amount of smoothness on tap that elevates the mouthfeel above many other bottled porters of this type. A solid and dependable example of the style.

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Photo of micromaniac129
3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this down in the Noth Wales store.
A nice looking beer with a deep brown color, a tall deep beige head, plenty o' lacing to go around.
Carbonation, who knows.
Aromatics were good but basic. Had a good malty aroma.

Taste was full flavor with a good roasted malt bill and some flavors of chocolate.

Felt smooth and almost velvetty on the palette with a bitter, but not too bitter finish.

As for a chain brewpub it was a standard beer with nothing really standing out. It was good and I liked it and thats the important thing.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Half finger head on a near jet black body and excellent lacing. Aroma consists of dark chocolate, roasted malts, espresso and earthy hops. The flavor follows this perfectly which each of those same notes echoed in the flavor. Medium body and moderate carbonation. This is a very nicely flavorful porter and may be one of their better brews.

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Photo of drtth
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a standard shaker pint glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As served the beer is a dark brown, almost black, with a ½” head of light tan foam. The lacing coats the side of the glass and sipping leaves some lacing for much of the beer.

Smell: The aroma is full of chocolate with traces of coffee and a hint of some sort of dark fruitiness.

Taste: Flavor lightly sweet chocolate or cocoa with touch of dark fruitiness. The hops are mostly citric and provide a nice light counterbalance to the sweetness.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium bodied and has some enjoyable prickly carbonation. The finish is medium to long and starts with a touch of the chocolate sweetness that slides into a crisp, almost citric bitterness that spreads throughout the mouth and complements the faint taste of roast to the end.

Drinkability and Overall Impression: Definitely a beer for repeated sipping as one chats with friends. In addition the 2nd went very well with the salad and soup chosen for dinner. My overall impression is that this is an excellent, well made porter well suited to be one of the house standards for the chain. I’ll certainly be revisiting this one again and can see why it has won a few medals.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ Iron Hill West Chester on 11/20/11. Served in a goblet.

Pours a near black, with a ½ finger of off-white froth. This maintains a creamy richness, which soaps the sides of the glass with heavy swathes of lace. The aroma smells of chocolate and roasted coffee, along with some green leafy citrus notes and even a touch of spice.

The taste is cocoa and caramel up front, which is quickly cut off wall of green feeling hop bitterness. The malts return in the finish with a dry, burnt, and roasty finish, which really gives this some character that hangs on the palate for a while. Those fresh citric hops really drive this for the most part though. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a firm and prickly feel up front that lays some sharpness down on the tongue, but then works itself into more of a crisp smoothness as this rides along the back of the throat. This is easy enough feeling.

This is definitely my favorite of the staple beers from the Iron Hill chain and is honestly one that I should be drinking more of. This glass today wasn’t the best that I’ve had from the different locations but it was certainly good enough. A fine American Porter.

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Photo of jlindros
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the brew pub.

Dark molasses brown color little head.

Nose has sweet dark malts, chocolate, coffee, light roast, creamy caramel porter aromas.

Taste has more sweet roasty malts, chocolate, dark chocolate, light coffee and toffee, caramel, nice bitter spicy hop bitterness, creamy mocha like taste.

Med body with decent carb.

Overall nice, good flavors, nice malt profile, bit of earthy hops, a bit light on the body though for the taste and malt profile.

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Photo of vfgccp
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Super dark black / brown with amber highlights when held to light. Creamy and tan head. Good head retention and lacing.

A- Rich malt smell. Dark Chocolate on front end. Hints of vanilla on middle. Finishes with a slight almond and caramel note.

T- Bitter chocolate front end. Roasty malt middle end. Finish is slightly less bitter with hints of smoke and char.

M- Bubbly tang and acidity n front end. Coating and think feel with a biting acidic finish. Kind of dry as well at back end.

O- Thicker than most porters. Great looking beer with great taste characteristics. Superbly drinkable and smooth taste. Acidic bite is refreshing and helps round out the thickness.

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Photo of mikeg67
4.16/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Iron Hill Phoenixville. Pours black hue with a thick, tanned head. Aroma is of roasted malt, coffee and hints of dark fruit. Medium, smooth body. Coffee, chocolate, dark fruit, roasted malt and molasses fill the mouth. Long, bitter-sweet finish. Everything what should be in a good Porter is present in this brew.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Iron Hill, Media, PA

A tasty porter. Poured dark brown to black with a finger of off-white head. Aroma of coffee, chocolate, and roasty malts, just the way a porter should be. Similar in the taste; malts came across a bit smokey almost, smooth chocolate and coffee notes retained. Medium bodied and drinkable.

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Photo of pburland23
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Iron Hill Media.

Opted for a pint of porter to finish up Friday night dinner while my wife ate her dessert.

Beer pours a dark brown, not quite opaque, a little reddish mahogany around the edges when held up to the light. Fairly nice, thick egg-white head that slowly faded into some moderate lacing.

Nice smelling pint...roasted malts and chocolate. Taste is similar. The roasted flavor dominates but there is some trace hops bitterness that compliments the malt flavor. I've always enjoyed the taste of this porter. It's full-bodied, robust and well rounded. The carbonation is good and the drinkability is quite high. It's a nice way to end a night at Iron Hill.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pig Iron Porter @ Iron Hill West Chester

Pours a dark brown/amber with ruby highlights, short livid off white head. Smell has alittle roast, light cocoa and a bit of vanilla. In the taste, roasted malt, light coffee flavor but alittle watery. Mouthfeel also a bit on the thin side. Still the flavors work, just alittle light and the feel could be stronger. Not one of the most impressive offerings Iron Hill has.

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Photo of afksports
4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm enjoying this one on tap with a couple of good old friends. I
surprise it's not higher rated on here, because this 2010 vintage is a solid example of a porter.

Appearance is well laced and headed with a dark robust brown to black look. It's got a strange smell to it
in addition to the typical coffee chocolate and burnt malt elements. Maybe a cream or some type of soap coming through. It's not bad, just different. Adds an intrigue. The Tatar is standard porter. True to style but not exceptional. Follows the nose and stays rich without being too much.

I can't argue against this one. It's a beer I remembered from long ago and still held to form. Cheers, iron hill. You didn't disapoint.

I'll be back. Also for nachos.

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

had on-tap at the Media location, served in pint glass.

dark brown almost black in appearance, with thin white head. smell and taste are roasted malt, a little bitter. not much in the way of your typical coffee and chocolate notes typical of a porter.

mouthfeel was on the thinner side, medium carbonation. fiarly easy drinking and smooth.

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Photo of BARFLYB
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Flowing from the firkin at The Grey Lodge pub in Philadelphia.

A- Pig Iron Porter looks creamy, the hard whisp of cream colored with tan foam on top tells me this is one healthy looking beer. (disclaimer, I experienced a clearly infected porter from one of the Iron Hill locations but that's neither here nor there). The liquid wasshoe shine black and pretty hard to see through although some red spots poke through up to light.

S- Roasty robust roasted malts (say that one ten times fast) underneath a creamy almost milk like scent with some cocco and small chocolates. Some burnt coffee and a dry appeal as well. Some hops off in the distance.

T- And, it's good. Pig Iron is roasty indeed with a slight smokey effect to itself. Getting some char and coffee and creamy milk in the middle finished off by some dry hop attributes almost like a extremely faded or aged storm king in terms of hops, yes those hops. Chocolate is there in spirit as well as some nutty appeal, this one is all about the roast.

M- It's off a firkin, the body is nearing medium and is not that watery. OK it seems like it's on the verge of being watery but not really, the body remains strong. Easy feel out da firkin. Smooth and creamy, yet not that creamy, the hops towards the end take away from it, but add something in their own right.

D- I really liked this porter and wish I had a firkin of my own for the upcoming winter time blues.

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Photo of larryi86
4.08/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler poured into a snifter

A- Dark brown with a two finger tan head.

S- Sweet roasted malts, coffee, and dark chocolate.

T- Very close to the smell, coffee and chocolate stand out more, with a different, some what hoppy bitter finish. The finish has taken me a few sips to get use to but I do enjoy it now that I know what what is coming.

M- Not as light as a light beer, but I feel that it would be better if it was thinker and heavier.

D- Easy to drink and enjoy. I think drink a whole growler in one sitting is a lot, but if you have someone to share it with it is good.

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Photo of jhammel01
4.4/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

One of my favorite porters, if not my favorite (for good reason!)

Pours a deep smooth looking black. Plenty of carbonation with a nice creamy off white head.

The scent of this beer is intense. Heavy smoke, dark chocolate and coffee esters.

Taste is nice and smooth, creamy, dark chocolate, coffee. Well balance with a little hop bite in the background. Finishes with a bit of slight caramel and tons of roasted malt.

Such a good beer. Love this one!

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Photo of tubdog13
4.24/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pig Iron Porter
A - 1/2 inch head that dissipated slowly, nice lacing (good clean glass), nice dark amber color, looks very inviting
S - roasted malt and cocoa smell 
T - sweet malt with a light dryness/bitterness, very well balanced sweetness with the bitterness coming late  
M - dry cocoa feel on the tongue, leaves mouth a little dry(not a bad thing) 
D - very, may have to have a few more through dinner, think this would be a porter for a newbie to try

Starting to think there is not a bad beer out there if you sample and do some research....

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Photo of Gavage
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: dark brown almost black in color with a 1" head that slowly falls to a thick surface foam.

Smell: easy to detect the roasted malts and chocolate tones by the nose.

Taste: roasted malts, dark chocolates, prunes, and a mild bitterness make up a straight forward porter.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Smooth throughout. Aftertaste is long lived as the flavors linger in the mouth a while.

Drinkability: this beer hits the spot when you want a porter. You won't be drinking this beer fast, but it isn't a slow sipper either. Nice flavor profile will have you looking for another pint.

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Photo of zoso1967
3.99/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark reddish brown that light hardly penetrates. Beer has a nice tan head that has average retention and lacing. The aroma is malty and roasty with some nice caramel coffee notes. Very nice full porter aroma. The taste follows suit with a great balance of both roasted malts and caramel malt character. I also am picking up some molasses, cocoa, and an astringency that is not at all unpleasant or out of place. Not much bitterness or hop character, but they are detectable in the background. I tend to prefer a little bit less coffee/roasted malt character in my porters, but this one is well put together and I do not mind it so much. Medium bodied with a slightly sticky finish. Quite drinkable and still my favorite offering from this chain pub.

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Pig Iron Porter from Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant
87 out of 100 based on 69 ratings.