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Zywiec Porter - Zywiec Breweries PLC (Heineken)

Not Rated.
Zywiec PorterZywiec Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

392 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 392
Hads: 715
Avg: 3.93
pDev: 17.81%
Wants: 33
Gots: 75 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Zywiec Breweries PLC (Heineken)
Poland | website

Style | ABV
Baltic Porter | 9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-01-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (23) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 392 | Hads: 715
Photo of PolarBear3
2.66/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

A - Pours an a deep almost black colour with a tanned head that laces and retains well

S - Some burnt coffee, chocolate, some spice and a hint of vanilla

T - Roasted,charcoal woody coffee, chocolate with some liquorice and a slightly metallic bitter finish

M - Medium Bodied with medium to high carbonation

O - Fairly average flavourless porter. No complexity and the bitter metallic finish is very ordinary

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Photo of YoDude
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Zywiec Porter, aged 2 years 8 months in my beer cellar, 9.5% ABV, 16.9oz bottle and poured into a Dogfish Head Chalice. Poured black with a thick brown head. Taste of bakers chocolate, roasted malt and a slightly sweet finish. The roasted malt lingers until the next taste. A medium bodied beer with a chocolate mousse like mouthfeel. It wears its age quite well and exceeded my expectations. It also goes great with s’mores. This is a wonderful example of a baltic style porter and highly recommended.

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Photo of TruePerception
3.89/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

(Previous review, transferred from beer journal)

Zywiec Porter: 9.5%, thick, head slow to form and emaciated;

Appearance: very dark brown, nearly black;

Smell: chocolate malt, black licorice background;

Taste/Mouthfeel: immediate light powdery cocoa, then dark chocolate, finishes with a slight roasted coffee flavor, long finish (unobtrusive), smooth;


Poured into a pint glass.

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Photo of magictacosinus
2.76/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.5

In my current quest of loving all things Polish, this seemed like the most logical widespread offering to try. I did not enjoy the Żywiec pilsner too much (although it was definitely refreshing for what it was), but I wanted to give this shot as I love Baltic porters. Poured out of a 500ml bottle into a nonic pint glass. Freshness date is listed as "09/28/2013." Ha! A freshness date for a Baltic porter?

The appearance is pretty spot-on as I'd hope, pouring a nearly opaque black color with about 3 fingers of an off-khaki head that settles but leaves a bit of lacing in its path. Holds on pretty well, although I sense it will die soon... But at the high-ish ABV I would expect that. Not as inky as I want it to be, and there's definitely a brownish transparency that reveals itself when held against the light, but otherwise its definitely solid, especially for a mass produced beer.

The aroma is also very solid, with notes of sweet coffee extract, milk chocolate, vanilla, cinnamon, light spices, and bit of roasted barley at the finish. Definitely coated with booziness, however, with light notes of acetate, almost verging on acetone (nail polish, rubbing alcohol). However, the sugars from the malts do their best here, and it holds together well without being too sweet or overwhelming. Smells like fresh chocolate cake batter, really. If it weren't for that slight acetone-like note, this would score much higher with me.

The flavor is truly bizarre, however. Completely takes a nosedive unlike any Baltic porter I've had. At first there's a good note of roasted cacao-like barley, with some sweetness that is creamy, vanilla-like, and filled with notes of brown sugar and coffee extract (maybe some nuttiness as well). Then, there's an unforgiving metallic flavor resembling copper or nickel, which goes straight to the head in an unpleasant, mineral-y manner. Gets progressively worse as it warms up, but it was also noticeable while it was cold. The finish is slightly boozy and sweet, with more notes of chocolate and coffee, but those metallic notes are so bad it's like swallowing pennies. Creamy and medium-bodied otherwise and not hard to drink. Warms you up quite well. Too bad it tastes like someone shoved rolls of nickels up my nose.

Oh man, there must be something wrong with this batch, because no recent reviews mention anything about any off-metallic flavors. This was an otherwise solid Baltic porter offering in every respect that is completely tainted by an off, unpleasant flavor. This is the first time where I've had a beer that is solid in every respect EXCEPT for the flavor. What a disappointment. I'll revisit this maybe when I'm in Poland or something, but unless someone hands this to me for free, never again.

Post-script: This seems to taste better the longer time I consume it over, but I'm going to blame the tipsiness dulling my senses overall.

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Photo of artoolemomo
3.69/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance- Pours up a good amount of rushing head that quickly settles and shows good head retention. The head is a creamy beige while the body is a dark chocolate brown that shows garnet notes when held up to the light. Considerable lacing is left behind.

Nose- Notes of smoke are the prominent aromas from both the bottle and the glass. Roasted malts wait in the background. A little subdued but it may need a little more time to open up. Mostly sweet roasted malts with hints of chocolate and raisin. Subdued but still promising.

Taste- Roasted malt notes are the first which appear followed by some of the raisin of the nose. This is a very sweet porter at this moment. Some chocolate notes. The roasted malts try to contend with the dominance of the sweet malts but I do not feel that they fully balance them out. The sweetness dominates the finish so much that I get some citrus that seems out of place. There is some woodiness and (finally) that bitterness is coming out more- as well as some much needed coffee notes. Nevertheless, there is something off about this beer. This could use much more of the smoke and possible acidity suggested in the style description. Right now, it is your average porter- sweet but a little too cloying. That being said, I am starting to notice a tartness around the edges which is giving this beer more character and structure. This is showing so much more integration than it had before. After some time, this is resolving itself into a decent porter. Not a great beer but good.

Mouthfeel- I wonder if there is oatmeal in the recipe because this has some creaminess and smoothness but also some grit. I like it. The mouthfeel is quite unique. Very heavy.

Drinkability- Given that no heat is present in a 9.5% and this had a decent flavor profile plus a heavy but manageable mouthfeel makes this a very approachable beer. Not a bad grab at around 5 bucks.

Overall- It seems as if this may stray from the style but it is enjoyable nevertheless. It has flaws but somehow, most of these flaws add to its character.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.34/5  rDev -15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

(Served in a dimple mug)
Best before 2.15.2014
A- This beer pours a jet black body with a thick creamy deep tan head that is pitted and sticks to the glass with some nice lace. There are a few random bubbles that pop out of the body toward the surface.

S- The mellow inky black malt aroma is some and seems somewhat lagered.

T- The slightly chalky yeast flavor has some hints of dry prunes as it opens up with some clean lagered taste to the soft chocolate black malt notes. There is an acrid burnt black malt flavor in the finish that grows a bit as it opens.

M- The medium-light mouthfeel has no alcohol heat to it.

O- There are hints of Baltic porter in there but it is very clean and light in flavor and aroma with mostly a bitter black char and iodine quality as it opens up, but it is probably the best Baltic porter for under $1.50 you can find. That doesn’t mean I will drink another one though.

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Photo of mactrail
3.81/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This has that distinct licorice flavor I haven't had in a long time. Very dark velvety red brown in the tall Pilsner glass. The off-white foam is long lasting. Nicely carbonated and bubbles up with every pour.

An interesting woody, bitter edge creeps in. There is definitely some charred grain and burnt sugar in the flavors. Malty and a little winey.

Strong but without any unpleasant alcohol taste. The fruity, licorice taste is a little weird, so I guess it won't take over Green Flash Double Stout among my favorite darks. From the 500 ml bottle bought at AJ's Fine Foods in Phoenix.

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Photo of IchLiebeBier
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Very dark brown; medium tan head, long lasting

Aroma: Malty; dried fruit; slight molasses and honey; alcohol smell

Taste: Chewy mouthfeel; very warm alcohol flavor; bitter throughout with sweet undertones; maybe chocolatey

Remarks: Bad sample, but I could tell it would be a great beer

Did not score A, T, S, M at that time; disregard those scores

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

500ml bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a dark cola color, revealing hints of ruby-red translucence when held up to a light. A two-finger mocha head is formed with a beautiful creaminess and very strong retention. As it slowly recedes, it leaves behind large sheets of lacing down the glass.

S: It's very forward in dark fruits, chocolate, and molasses. Distant notes of roast, coffee, and mild hops are hidden behind the sweet maltiness. My only real problem is how mild the aroma is - which is a shame, because it's good otherwise.

T: Sweetness opens the flavor profile strongly, with strong caramel, dark fruit, and chocolate qualities. This will transition to a very roasty, mildly hoppy finish. Hints of earth and booze pop up on the back end, as well. While it's a bit boozy, it doesn't really hinder its drinkability, thanks to the mildness of flavor. It even has a bit of depth to it. The booze note gets stronger as it warms up, so drink cold.

M: A bit on the thin side, with a typical crisp lager bite on the finish and strong carbonation. It's almost as if this is designed for drinkability over richness; in regards to the former, it's pretty successful.

O: This is a very dangerous brew. It's inexpensive and drinkable, with only mild hints to suggest its actual strength. While not fantastic, it's a great way to get drunk on the cheap(ish) - I know I'd much rather drink this over some crappy Euro malt liquor.

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Photo of silverking
4.02/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A- A-Dark cola color with a rocky tan head. head Retention is moderate and there are well defined rings of lace.

S- Dark fruit, Dark roasted malt, almost Smokey.

T- Less dark fruit than the aroma. Flavors lean more towards dark coffee and burnt malt. A small trace of alcohol is also detectable. The finish is long, with a pleasant cocao bitterness on the back of the palate.

M- Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. There is a definite warming sensation from the alcohol.

O- Very nice, I would refinement this and I will buy it again.

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Photo of brewcifix
2.39/5  rDev -39.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

A- This pours red-brown, but is opaque black in the glass. This porter has a great head on it's shoulders with pretty decent lacing.

S- Roasted malts, notes of honey, hay, and some distant chocolate sum up the nose on this one.

T- Deep espresso and roasted malts are subdued by extremely subtle hops, some sweetness, and a heavy alcohol finish. You can taste every bit of that 9.5% ABV for sure! My inner "beer snob" comdemns this. But, my manliness is inflated. I feel like this is putting hair on my chest, and I should be accompanied by some vikings or something. There's a lingering espresso-malt thing happening in my mouth that I really can't complain about.

M- There's a medium amount of carbonation (medium to high for a porter), with medium weight. If not for the heavy alcohol finish, I'd say the tongue weight makes this more drinkable than most fine porters.

Overall, this is a porter for men that want to drink like manly men. It isn't notably complex, and I wouldn't consider it to be among the best I've tasted. As I often say about beers in this category, (out of respect for beers in ANY category): I "wouldn't kick this one out of bed". It's tasty, cheap, and unassuming. Although, I prefer sophisticated, intelligent, beautiful women- I can enjoy the "tasty-cheap-unassuming" type on occasion. If there are better porters on tap or in the store- by all means: buy them. However, if you're on a budget, and nothing else is up your alley- do not be ashamed to give Zywiec Porter a try.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.41/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - A fairly dark brown, nice cocoa head with a ruby hue when pouring, Head is a 1/2 inch that seems to stick around for a while.
S - Nothing really stands out it smells of lager yeasts, some roast and a touch of chocolate but it's faint.
T - Well it doesn't taste like any porter I ever liked. Mild German hops meets some old coffee with a slightly chalky finish.
M - Best part of the beer it drinks like a black lager but hides the ABV so well. Wish the flavor was better also.

Overall for $2.50 I guess its not so bad. Wish I would have know it was Heineken before I got it since it has the classic "skunked" flavor even though it's a brown bottle...

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Photo of Bear1964
3.52/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 500 ml bottle into a pint glass, almost jet black with a nice 3 finger tan head. It smelled rich,roasted and sweet...things I like in a Porter. Taste held roasted malt with a bittersweet edge also some metallic notes and alcohol/dark chocolate flavors after each sip. Mouthfeel was medium to heavy and was what I would expect for a Baltic Porter....I would get this again as a single ( $ 1.67 ) and recommend to anyone who wants to explore Porters for a good price.

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Photo of Samuel906
3.59/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

This was going out on a limb a bit for me; I don't venture to the import section of the bottle store too often, and I think this is my first beer from Poland. Overall I was very pleased, very rich full beer and absurdly cheap. Pours dark with medium head. Smells very good: chocolate and cinnamon and roasted malt. Follows with rich flavor as well. Chocolate and malt, hints of coffee. No booze. Very mild metallic taste. Only thing odd to me about this is that it is called a porter. I was expecting something a little lighter weight. Good all around!

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Photo of BaltimoreBeerLover
3.27/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Poured from 500 ml bottle into wine glass

Appearance: Jet black with beautiful 1 inch tan head.

Smell: Spiced cinnamony malts, molasses, brown sugar, alcohol

Taste: Some dark brown sugar, boozy. Tastes less boozy as the beer warms, and the nicer flavors become more pronounced.

Mouthfeel: Alcohol taste really lingers for a while and dominates the flavors after the sip.

Overall: Good beer for the price. Worth trying especially for the value but probably wouldn't recommend. 3.2/5.

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Photo of jlindros
3.81/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Someone recommended this to me, so figured I'd give it a try.

pours a darker colored thick creamy 2 finger head that doesn't really fade, although leaves some nice lacing when it does, very dark brown beer with faintest hint of ruby light sneaking through.

Nose brings some of those Baltic region, like Polish style dark malts, a little roasty, very syrupy almost straight malt extract syrup or cola syrup, little molasses like sweet syrupy, light earthy root based aromas, faint hints of cocoa and vanilla.

Taste starts with more dark malts, again that similar Baltic region dark roasty kinda malts not the roasted malts you get in U.S. at least. Wants to be sweet flavors but doesn't get too sweet, cola syrup again, a similar to molasses kinda sugar extract but not the same, like another root or stalk based syrup extract. Cocoa comes out a bit more, little chocolate malt flavor, again with faint hint of vanilla somehow. Biscuity caramel malts in there, with a bit of a coppery malt flavor, and just a touch metallic possibly from slightly burnt malts, or possibly a yeast thing, as well as fluffy nougat and black malt. A bit of a spicy earthy hop presence, with some decent chewy bitterness. Light booze flavor coming through like a very light fusel alcohol. Finish is drier but sticky and syrupy, still a bit sweet, more warming slightly tingly booze, more nougat, caramel, cocoa powder, light roast all lingering, and a hint of a fruity flavor probably from the yeast, and plenty of bitterness lingering.

Mouth is a bit fuller bodied, fluffy carbonation, some warming slightly tingly booze.

Overall not bad, a decent true Baltic region Baltic Porter, not quite up to what some of the clean and full flavored beers that are made these days, but this is from 1881 so a great beer for that time I would guess. Still tasty and drinkable, I was expected extract skunky crappy beer so this was a pleasant surprise.

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Photo of bnes09
4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark chocolate brown and mostly opaque. Creamy foam on the pour and descent retention for the strength. Blotches of lacing.

Aroma of black cherries, prunes, dates and maple. Mild roasted coffee and pistachio nuts.

Sweet dark fruit flavor and thick malt character. Subtle, non-distinct roasted notes add a nice bitterness. Hint of earthy hops. Very well balanced.

Full bodied with lots of syrupy malt texture. Chewy on the tongue, no dry finish, and lingering malt flavors.

Very good porter.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.59/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a deep dark brown color nearing black. Upon pouring there is a two finger tan foam on the top of the brew. The head fades slowly over time to leave a decent level of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is heaviest f roasted malt, with notes of coffee and cocoa mixed within. Some sweeter aromas of caramel and dark fruit aromas of fig and plum accompany the more roasted nose flavors. With these smells there is also a faint grassy/herbal and alcohol smell

Taste – The taste begins with a drier coffee and roasted malt flavor up front. A cocoa flavor soon joins these with the other two flavors becoming even more pronounced on the tongue. Hints of sweetness begin peeking into the taste beginning with some caramel and vanilla and later becoming more dark fruit in nature. The beer never gets too sweet however with it maintaining a higher proportion of roast/dark to sweet. Toward the end the booziness of the brew comes to light with an alcohol flavor developing in the taste. Along with the alcohol flavor comes notes of a bitter grassy and slightly biting coffee bitterness that when combined with the rest of the flavors leaves a rather roasted and bitter flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer was on the medium side with a carbonation level that was quite average overall.

Overall – A pretty good Baltic porter with some nice roasted and more bitter notes.

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Photo of barnzy78
4.06/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500mL bottle, this definitely needs an upgraded review from the 3/5 I gave it as a 'had' a few years ago as a rookie beer drinker.

Poured roughly into a 25oz snifter, it's near-black with a tall, frothy, beige head, excellent retention and chunky lacing is left all over the glass. Aromas are pleasantly sweet with dark malts, raisin, plum, earth, slight smoke & spiciness, booze. Tastes are sweet and rich with plum, raisin, caramel, chocolate, mild smokiness, mellow roastiness, touch of spiciness & earth, booze is present but not quite hot. Mouth-feel is smooth & creamy, finishes clean. Overall, solid Baltic Porter! So glad to revisit this one, and for $1.79 a pint I definitely will hit it up again soon!

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Photo of falloutsnow
3.96/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

From: Binny's, Glen Ellyn, IL
Date: Best by 04/16/2013
Glass: Tulip

Zyweic's porter is dark and rich, heavy with roasted malt, molasses, and prune flavors, with some chocolate and coffee bean accents to widen the scope. A solid introduction to the style, since the beer seems to be fairly available wherever I've lived (and I've lived in many places). While perhaps a bit too full of ethanol and willing to showcase it, Zyweic's baltic porter is complex and enjoyable enough for the $1.79 I paid for it. Well worth trying, repeatedly.

Pours a 2cm tall head of tan to burnt tan foam, composed of small bubbles, with above average retention, lasting about two minutes. The head eventually fades to a thin cap atop the body, thicker and with some large bubbles remaining around the sides. The lacing the head leaves is excellent, coating all the sides of the glass with heavy residual foam in various interesting patterns. The beer's body is dark brown to black, opaque, holding this to a light changes nothing. Carbonation is not visible due to the beer's opacity. For the style, I really can't see how this could get any better.

Aromas are more reminiscent of molasses and dried fruit esters than of roasted malt and chocolate, but all are present. The scents begin with dried plum esters, which quickly turn into molasses, roasted malt, a bit of anise, ethanol, and hints of dark chocolate.

Front of palate is primarily full of fruit esters, with plum, prune, slight raspberry/blackberry, and a touch of molasses. This fades, fairly effortlessly, to a mid-palate of roasted malt, molasses, fruit esters akin to dried plums and dates, modestly noticeable ethanol, and faint coffee bean and cocoa nibs. Back of palate is of roasted malt, molasses, ethanol, and faint coffee bean/cocoa nibs, the fruit esters largely having faded except for some vague prune. Aftertaste is of roasted malt, modest coffee bean and dark chocolate, and ethanol.

Beer is medium to medium-heavy in body, with carbonation levels of mid-intensity, leading to a slightly fizzy mouthfeel that gradually becomes foamy and smooth across the palate. Ethanol can be felt across the tongue during sipping, and in the back of the throat and nostrils after each swallow. Closes quite dry, with substantial stickiness lingering across the palate. I would have liked to see lower, smoother carbonation to make this more sippable given its heaviness and ethanol content, and also "feel" less of the ethanol burning across the palate.

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Photo of BeardedBoffin
3.63/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A bottle of Zywiec Porter pours a tootsie roll brown with a big foamy head. The foam has decent retention as this big beer slowly goes down. The aroma has a strong malt presence. The grain really comes through with hint of chocolate and dark fruit. On the palate some chocolate nibs prickle through. A big boozy center and finish herald what this beer is about. Some dark fruit sneaks in about midway but this beer really is about the alcohol. As others have noted, this beer isn't bad for the price ($1.49 in my case), but I would like to see a little more depth to mask the alcohol a bit.

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Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
3.45/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

THIS IS NOT A BALTIC PORTER. If you know and enjoy the style, steer clear of this beer. This tastes nothing like a baltic porter. Just because this brewery is Polish, this is automatically a baltic porter?

Black with no light shining through it. Nice light mocha head. Lacing is actually pretty solid throughout the session.

Kind of a mix of roasted malt, chocolate, and alcohol on the nose.

Taste mirrors the nose. Roasty bitter malts, alcohol.

Well carbonated. I wonder if the carbonation is bringing out the alcohol more?

Overall this beer is OK. It's a 9.5% beer, and unfortunately you taste each and every percentage of alcohol in this beer. I wouldn't go out of my way to get this again.

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Photo of mikeg67
4.02/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

500 ml bottle. Pours dark brown with thick, long lasting, creamy, brown head and nice lacing. Aroma is of bready malt, cacao, brown sugar and hints of dark fruit. Body is full and creamy. Taste is roasted, toasted malt, cacao, brown sugar, dark fruit and a good dose of earthy hops. Finish is long, bitter-sweet. Solid Baltic Porter.

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Photo of rickyleepotts
4.23/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

There are only two beers from this brewery on our list, and this one has been starring at me every time I open the fridge. This is one of my favorite beers of ALL time! I know, I know… I never say that. But I would put this one in my top 5. It's cheap, too. For a 9.5% beer that has been aged this long and has been shipped so far… for $2.39 (at Sun Devil Liquors) this is a great beer. Anyway, I am excited to be drinking another Żywiec Porter. I bought two bottles the last time I was at Sun Devil, and didn't even realize it was on the list. Glad I saved this bottle! Or maybe I just need another trip to Sun Devil Liquors.

In the Glass: Pitch. Black. This is VERY dark, and has a very nice frothy tan head. The lace is decent, too as the beer just hangs on for dear life as I swirl this around the glass. Funny thing is, I don't remember drinking this very often in Poland. The first time I had it I ordered it because I didn't know what it was… and immediately fell in love. It felt thinner in Europe for some reason. But that was a few years ago. Today is looks nice and thick. As always, we are drinking this right out of the fridge.

Nose: I immediately pick up some copper notes and then finish with some dark fruits/burnt chocolate aromas. I have had a few Baltic porters lately, but nothing compares to this. Until today I didn't realize the process was so intense. The aging and everything… but maybe that is what makes a porter a Baltic porter. A second whiff has me smelling some more intense copper notes and has me drooling for a drink.

Flavor: The flavor is, at first, weak and somewhat dry. Then as you start to swallow the expected porter flavors rush to the top of the tongue. This is WAY too cold, but a quick swish in your mouth will have your entire palate excited and ready for another sip. The copper notes that I was smelling are there, and they are obvious. Not like I am sucking on a penny, but close.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is pretty boring, to be honest. I don't drink this for the mouthfeel. I drink this for the aftertaste. So let's just get to the aftertaste… the best part of this beer!

Aftertaste: A lot of Irish stouts claim to be "dry". They will even say "dry" on the side of the box. But very few are actually dry. This one… this one is VERY dry. The finish is so dry, I can see some people taking one drink and never ordering this beer again. But that is why I like it. I like the dry finish. That is what I like in a gin martini, too. I use extra dry vermouth when I mix one of those. Oh, and bleu cheese stuffed olives are the best!

The Żywiec Porter is a very nice porter that has a fantastic finish. The aftertaste is great, and it brings back memories of being in Poland. I will say, this beer gets better as it heats up. If I were to buy this one again (and I will) I will freeze a glass and pour it in room temperature. You don't want to ruin the flavor of a beer by chilling it. There should be a public service announcement about beer temperatures.

If you can get your hands on this, do. It's a great porter for a great price. Remember, it's 9.5% ABV! Bottoms up, people.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.54/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Real nice appearance on the pour. A big billowing head, makes four fingers easily with nice settling and giant clumpy character. A very light mocha color, clumps and whipped lacing abound. Body color is classic dark walnut black, and very light and wet coming out of the bottle, pretty solid looking brew.

Nose is quite grainy but a little small too. There's a gassy carbon dioxide presence, almost quinine tonic, but more like salty club soda. Hints at spritzy characters.

Palate hits with a simple roast, but some nice light banana estery senses. Finish though is a little ferous, quite "steely" and metallic. The hop angle is a bit punched out with this metal bitterness also. The body is nice and silky and solid, with a hint of wet to go with it. Aftertaste lingers and is a sort of salivating wetness feel.

Overall this starts off pretty good, but the aftertaste really sort of lets it all down unfortunately. It's at least drinkable and I could have this again for the right price.

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Zywiec Porter from Zywiec Breweries PLC (Heineken)
88 out of 100 based on 392 ratings.