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Fuller's London Porter - Fuller Smith & Turner PLC

Not Rated.
Fuller's London PorterFuller's London Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

2,266 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,266
Reviews: 1,154
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 10.5%
Wants: 174
Gots: 179 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Fuller Smith & Turner PLC visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Porter |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-20-2001

Fuller's London Porter is an award-winning example of this historic English style; smooth and creamy with delicious chocolate and coffee flavors derived from the roasted malt.

The griffin Brewery is Chiswick, London, has brewing fine ales since 1654.

The Fuller, Smith & Turner partnership dating back to 1845, brews an excellent range of award-winning beers, many of which are available in the U.S. including London Pride pale ale and the Old's original ESB.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,266 | Reviews: 1,154 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of scruffwhor
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 11.2 oz bottle.

Appearance- Poured a deep, deep brown with some tan/garnet highlights. Head was one finger after pour and left a thick foam throughout the entire beer.

Smell- Nutty, creamy, milky, half and half-ey, slight hints of mocha and toffee.

Taste- Starts out with depply roasted malts. The malt flavors are molasses thick. The nuts and cream come into play in the middle of the tasting. The finish brings together all the malts, nuts, and cream flavors into a nice semi-sweet chocolatey melange.

Mouthfeel- Pretty medium bodied for a pretty dark and creamy looking brew. There were lots of dark tasting flavors to back up the look and smell of this Brew. The palate of this brew is would go very nice with some Hershey's chocolate.

Photo of NJpadreFan
3.53/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fuller's London Porter

Appearance- dark reddish brown close to black with a moderate head.
Smell- creamy cocoa with a light roasted coffee bean hop aroma.
Taste- very smooth burnt coffee. Very faint flavor.
Mouthfeel- Very smooth, maybe too watered down.

Overall- A decent porter that needs a little more flavor. Not bad.

Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a single at Woodman's West here in Madison. Had been looking for it for a while.

Pours black with ruby highlights under a finger or two of dark khaki foam that lasts to the final drop. Nose is sweet and toasty with notes of toffee and cocoa powder. Taste starts off with the milky-sweet toffee/caramel and transitions nicely into roasted malt, toasted biscuit and a nice coffee bitterness. Mouthfeel is smooth, gliding through the mouth. Probably the best English porter I've had to date as I have found them to be characterized by thin body and metallic aftertaste, neither of which were found here. Glad to finally find this classic gem.

Photo of goochpunch
4.82/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep, dark brown. Almost black. The head is a frothy milk chocolate color, but does not have much of a presence. The first thing noticed as I smell this is fruit. A big, sweet punch of dark fruit. This is shortly followed by a smooth chocolate and coffee mix. I get a lot of dried fruit, nuttiness, honey, and chocolate in the first wave of flavor, which mutes slightly to allow the roasted malt character to shine through. Delicate, lingering bitterness from the malt reminds me of chocolate-covered espresso beans. This is magnificent. The best way to describe what I'm experiencing is to imagine a piece of baklava, drizzled generously with a dark chocolate ganache, dusted with finely ground espresso beans, and served with a side of dates and preserved figs. Mouthfeel is of moderate body, lightly carbonated, with a slight slickness. Really, the mouthfeel here is perfect and is essential in bringing all of these flavors home. Highly drinkable.

At a measly 5.4%, this beer has more character and charm than a lot of the bigger beers people lose their shit over. A nearly flawless porter, and I've yet to find another that even comes close to this.

Photo of blitheringidiot
4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best before 12/15/06.

Wow! That's a midnight black pour! No light rays have a prayer escaping this one! Not even when held up to the light.

Aroma is a delicate roasted malt with a touch of sugar. Some baker's chocolate in the nose also.

First swigs: Rich cocoa flavors front the taste. A bit of vanilla bean suggestion with a linger of chocolate milk. Could be some black strap molasses?

Medium to full bodied, some chewiness, and soflty carbonated.

Last swigs: A pleasure to try the model version. Surprised that it took me this long to try it.

Beer is good. Happy world renowned eering.

Photo of connecticutpoet
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was a clear, medium-dark brown porter with a two finger head. The head was light beige, much lighter than the color led me to believe is would be.

Aroma was of light roasted malts, with a hint of bitter chocolate accompanied by a bit of sweetness. There were some dark fruits far underneath. Quite good and balanced.

Taste was complex blended roasted malts, with hints of roasted barley and coffee. It was ever so slightly sweet.

Mouthfeel was smooth and silky. Quite good.

Drinkability is rather good... this went down easily. If you're in the mood for a porter, this one is a great choice.

Photo of crookedhalo
4.54/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bloody L right, mate! I haven't had this fine ale in about 6-7 years! Granted it's an 11.2 oz. bottle that's dated best before Mar 1, 06, but what the 'ell, I'll give it the the ol' college try. Pours a translucent deep cola color with a fizzy, beige colored head that dissipates rather quickly. I'm not so sure I want to drink this beer because it smells too damn good. Toffee, chocolate-covered-raisin, faint whiffs of chocolate-laden alcohol. The best porter to come from the UK. Spot on. My goodness, I'm in love! I knew I remembered loving this beer, and memories are a fun thing to revisit! The quintessential porter from across the pond.

Revisit 8/24/2007:
Just as good as it's ever been, the bottle I'm savoring now is fresher than the one I reviewed. Full tilt roasty goodness with coffee, chocolate and toffee/caramel notes. An awesome porter.

Photo of Prufrock
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16.9 oz. bottle poured into a pilsner.

pours a deep brown that shines clear purple-ruby against the light. half an inch of off-white head that falls quickly and leaves rings of lace.

powdery chocolate dominates the aroma, with some coffee, raisins, caramel and plums. just a hint of piney hops.

medium-full body with a medium-high carbonation; not incredibly rich, but very smooth. chocolate and dark fruits with a clean, coffee bitter finish. nicely balanced and incredibly drinkable.

Photo of Byeast
3.97/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured blackish brown with ruby edges and a half inch head. Aroma is of creamed and dark roasted coffee and chocolate , dark maltiness , and tinge of buttery diactyl. Taste is rich and roasty. Chocolate and coffee flavors dominate , some slightly bittersweet molasses and a bit of hops and smoke. Mouthfeel is creamy with a pleasant bitter/coalish aftertaste. An exellent English porter. Flavorfull and smooth , very drinkable.

Photo of RedHaze
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with red highlights around the edges, with a one inch tan head that fades to a swirling cap and leaves quite a lot of lace.

Smell; coffee and chocolate are the dominant aromas, along with a bit of toffee and licorice. It's sweet without being overpoweringly so.

Taste; The coffee and bittersweet chocolate come out first as with the smell, followed by the toffee and a bit of a toasted flavor, and in the finish there's a touch of black licorice. There's very little bitterness to this beer. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and a bit dry, and so easy to drink.

Photo of jj21
4.57/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Tan head with good lacing covers a dark brown beer. Aromas of Caramel, chocolate and malt on the nose. Well rounded balance in this beer. The Chocolate and Caramel sweetness works well with the hint of hops. Goes down so smooth. No heavy alcohol presence makes this easy to drink.

Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a deep rich dark garnet color with a ¼” head of loose tan foam at first pour. The head was pretty active, but stuck around for a while. You can’t tell if there are many bubbles rising, but I guess there are because the head is still with me.

Aroma: Dark caramel aromatics along with some chocolaty notes are the key players in the aroma. There is a little bit of a floral note from hops in here that compliment the dark malts well, giving them an almost sweet impression.

Taste: The flavor is really much more mild than I would have thought from the aroma. It has a defined molasses-like sweetness that gets you in the beginning, and stays with you for the majority of the flavor profile. There is a bit of a roasty sharpness that becomes apparent about mid-way through the sip, and this fades into a slightly bitter-sweet finish that seems derived from hops as well as from the malt. There is no real alcohol noticeable the entire time. As the beer warms up some, there is an assertive toasty flavor that is becoming a much larger player in the flavor...but manages to stay reserved in the nose. Interesting.

Opinion: I really enjoy the subtle complexity of this beer. There is a well-rounded malt bill here that gives the palate something to contemplate. I can pick up a bit of hops, but they support the roast as much as actually contributing to the flavor. This is a nice beer, and one that I am sure that I will drink again.

Photo of Tupperwolf
3.98/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a rich black with a nicely proportioned white-tan head that leaves nice, sticky rings of lacing down the glass. It's not opaque, but gives off that distinct 'porter' black glow.

Coffee, dark, bittersweet chocolate, soft ethyl alcohols.

A bit lighter in flavor than in the nose, with a distinct 'porter' tang, a kind of orange peel zest that blends with vague bitter chocolate and finishes with English hop bitters.

Medium to heavy body for a porter, tangy carbonation.

Quite a nice porter, and certainly definitive of an English style porter.

Photo of gbarron
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16.9 oz. bottle. Dating says best before 02/APR/06. Close enough.

A - pours dark, dark brown, nearly black. Mostly opaque, except around the edges where you can find some glimpses of deep ruby and dark cherry wood. Head is off-white, slightly tan, doesn't hang around long, but forms a nice ring around the edge. Little or no lacing.

S - roasty, malty sweetness. Smell of roasted malt, coffee. Smells like nuts roasting in the oven. Hints of fresh floral hops, light fruit such as pear, apple.

T - smoky, roasty, coffee notes. Strong hop bitterness accompanies the toasty sweet malt. Also some astringent roasted/black malt bitterness in there. Predominant flavors are rich, deep roasted coffee, some light fruitiness, assertive hop bitterness but little hop flavor. Aftertaste of tart green apple.

M - medium bodied, smoky roastiness sits on your tongue. Dry finish.

D - extremely tasty porter, a classic. Very robust. Moderate to low alcohol makes this a very drinkable session porter.

Photo of Foxman
4.52/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

It pours a deep, rich mahogany, passable only to small flashes of ruby light. A full finger of creamy light brown head pops away to a frothy terrain. Skirts of lacing dress the inside of the glass.

The aroma brings a thick malty bouguet of dark roasted coffee, decadent dark chocolate, and a backdraft of dry sherry. A very slight tickle of earthy mint tunes in, then right out.

Upon sipping, a quick stab of roasted malt semi-sweetness is promptly outdone by a deeper espresso bitterness, along with a dry, dusky yeast overtone. Cocoa and raisins glide through the middle along with a feather of anise. The finish is dominated by a fine, lingering hops bitterness, but not without a nod to the residual malt. It's a splendid classic that inspires true respect for it's traditional greatness.

Rather north of light bodied, it slides across the palate and leaves a dark coffee feel.

Simply, it's an impressive blend of history and tradition, mixed with wonderful flavor and presence. It's a joy to drink one, and as much a joy to drink another, and in fact, the anticipation is almost a force unto itself. Not many beers can boast of being a style's blueprint, but this one is just that, and more.

Photo of UberWasser
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown bottle poured into a mug.

Pours a dark black color with a thin tan head that needs to be coaxed out with a medium hard pour and that doesn't stick around for long. It does lace the glass nicely, though, and a small halo stays around the edges for quite a while.

Smells of molasses and some brown sugar, mostly, with some faint smokey aromas just hinted at.

The molasses is still there in the taste but a sweet creamy taste pulls ahead just a little bit. A smokey roasted coffee bean taste settles on the back of the tongue just before and following the swallow. Mouthfeel is a little bit thin but has a nice lively carbonation that tickles the middle of the tongue in an enjoyable way.

This is a really pleasent porter that would be easy to sit back and sip all night long. Tastes good at cellar temp, tastes good at room temp, and has plenty going for it. Definitely something I'd drink again.

Photo of orfeu
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

1 pt., .9 fl. oz. bottle, a week past its "best before" date (26 February 2006). Deep translucent red -- almost purple -- leaning towards brown: like cherry cola with a frothy beige foam cap. Nose of sweetish roasty malts, caramel and vinous fruit aromas. Thin to medium bodied, the roasted malts flavor in this porter are much more subdued than anticipated. There is primarily a vinous cherry flavor (bordering on sour), with a smoky-charred character towards the end. Mineral finish. Earthy hop flavors and roastiness emerge as the beer warms. Very easy to drink, but I think it's probably better closer to room temperature. I wonder if this is ever served on cask...probably (?)...never been to London. Anyway, classy beer. Recommend.

Photo of BadBadger
3.58/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This pours a nice dark color out of the bottle, approaching black but not there. The smell is faintly of malts. The head is nice and foamy but very short lived. The taste is malty, in a dissapointingly singular way. A nice example of a porter to give a try but not worthy of searching out.

Photo of mrmanning
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- Opaque dark brown/blackish body sporting a think and foamy mocha head. Tight bubbles, leaving scads of stout like lacing.

Aroma- Dark chocolate and coffee beans dominate milder roasty malt aromas. A slight hop presence is also notable.

Taste- Roasty bitter sweet coffee, is accompanied by dark chocolate. They paid up nicely with the subtle hops bite.

Palate- Smooth and dangerously drinkable. A coffee bitterness lingers.

Overall- Fuller's London Porter is pretty much what a porter should be. This one is close to a sweet or coffee stout, but it's damn good.

Photo of yelterdow
4.54/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in an imperial pint glass at just over fridge temperature. Freshness date reads "Best Before 08/JAN/06."

Appearance- Pours a very nice ruby brown, the light fighting its way through the glass. The half-inch head retains very well and laces with island-like cling... well built and appetizing.

Smell- Exceptionally strong chocolate and coffee aromas, a real treat for the nose. It seems like a whole lot of chocolate malt and medium roast coffeebeans were infused into the beer, and I want a piece of the action. Damn good nose!

Taste- Rich, tasty chocolate and coffee malt backbone... great balance and thoroughly enjoyable.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Rolling and not too harsh in the mouth, active enough to support the bold flavors here. Great drinkability, and it's low (5.4 ABV) alcohol allows great sessionability.

Love it.

Photo of GnomeKing
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Engine-oil colored with a nice puffy head. This is a great example of a smooth, English session beer. The taste doesn't knock you over with a bounty of flavors, but that's fine and intentional. The beer is smoooth and well-balanced, rewarding you more with each sip. There's a slight astringency, which is the only think that kept me from giving it a 5 for drinkability. The flavors that are there are just right, particularly the unexpected chocolate flavor. The mouthfeel is nice, no sharp carbonation or thick creaminess--just an even, reasonably substational body.

Photo of surfadelic23
3.7/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap and Barleyhoppers in Riverview. This is a blackish dark brown color that is easy to get lost in. Pours a nice tan head on top that hung around to the bottom leaving a cocoa colored lacing. Nice. This is a sweet malty smelling brew that sets my mouth watering. This had a nice roasty coffee flavor. It made me regret not drinking more porters as I often bypass them as being rather heavy. This was not. It had a nice mouthfeel and was very drinkable.

Photo of zeff80
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle

The London Porter pours out a deep, dark brown color with a two finger head. It leaves very nice lacing on the glass, too. Instantly, you can smell the chocolate and malt. It manages that chocolate taste without coming off too sweet. It wasn't very heavy for a porter. It really went down smooth. When I finished it I really wished I had another one on hand. Very Good!

Photo of Tallboy
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours:a deep mahogany like brown-black with a 2 fingered tanish head with distinct lacing.
Scent: mmmm...Pretty good ammount of chocolate and toffee mixed in with the malt and some nice hops, a slight floral scent to note as well.
Taste:. Veery good first sip. was both hoppy and sweet with delicous malty goodness for full flavor.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and not as thick as I figured it would be.
Drinkability: Verry High....I can't wait to recomend to some of my buds.

Photo of crwills
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm developing a real taste for British beers, especially the porters and stouts. This one is top-of-the-line.

Pours a solid chocolatey brown, almost black, with a foamy chocolate-milk head and lots of lacing. Cool, sturdy looking Fuller's bottle.

Smell is dry, semisweet chocolate, coffee, roasted malt, licorice. Little bit of butteriness.

Taste is toffee, espresso, bitter cocoa, and some smokey campfire elements. Bit of a bitter, sour aftertaste which lowered the taste score for me a bit. Mouthfeel is slightly thinner than I'd like for this style. Still a great beer though! Wish it was more widely available here!

Fuller's London Porter from Fuller Smith & Turner PLC
93 out of 100 based on 2,266 ratings.