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Fuller's London Porter - Fuller Smith & Turner PLC

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Fuller's London PorterFuller's London Porter

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2,304 Ratings

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Ratings: 2,304
Reviews: 1,167
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 10.5%
Wants: 190
Gots: 206 | 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.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,304 | Reviews: 1,167
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!

Photo of bighoppymonster
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep, dark brown with ruby highlights when held up towards light with a thin tan head. Smells of malty sweetness. Traces of chocolate and perhaps some coffee/roastyness as well. Rather mild in taste, which isn't to say that it is a simple brew. Roasted maltiness rounded out with some hop bitterness, but definately on the malty/sweet side. Was a little disappointed that is wasn't so rich in taste, but this is my first porter that I've tried so perhaps its not fair of me to say. Nice, creamy and very smooth going down, I could sip on this one all night (an advantage of not being so rich).

Overall, this is my first porter, and I thought I would start out with a traditional and well reputed one. Could definately imagine myself sipping on quite a few of these in Londontown during the cold, rainy season of fall in a dark, dank pub and throwing some darts. Very delicious, but in a sort of an understated way. Englishness through and through, and I look forward to trying some more.

Photo of Shovelbum
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a creamy light mocha head over a black body with orange-red edges. Aromas of British cola-like minerals, coffee and faint notes of bourbon in the background. Woody coffee flavors up front with a mild supporting hop bitterness. The malt has several different textures that I have trouble picking apart: there is a wine-like vinous character as well, but it is hard to pin down. The signature British/ FullerÂ’s mineral characters is present in the flavor as well. Medium to lean bodied, but the minerals make it seem much fuller. Smooth in the mouth with a bit of crispness at the finish.

I bet this would be murder served from a cask. From the bottle it is still a fine ale with a great deal of depth and a complexity of flavors that I have trouble picking apart.

Photo of ypsifly
4.6/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pint bottle poured into an imperial pint glass. The Ink jetted best before date is smeared and not fully readable.

Dark brown to almost black with a little more than a finger of light tan. Good retention with wispy rings of lace.

The nose has a lot of sweet, roasted malts. Has some chocolate and a whiff of smoke.

Creamy mouth with the roasted flavors becoming coffee like and the chocolate seems almost powder like. Hop bitterness towards the back as it doesn't really stand out but rather adds balance. The chocolate flavors stay through the finish and after taste.

An extremely drinkable porter. My favorite from the UK.

Photo of Optimat0r
4.58/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

appearance - comes in a very nice 500ml bottle. almost zero foam upon pouring, this is good. deep red in color, very dark.

taste - wow very good! extremely coffee-like taste. a nice dry flavor... theres enough here to hold your interest for a while. one of the better beers ive tried, no hops at all, like i said its almost like an alcoholic coffee drink. easily the best britain/ireland beer ive had.

drinkbility - the best! its complex enough to drink tons of while staying interesting and good yet a low enough abv to drink alot of without getting trashed. very good beer, i like it.

Photo of bcollar
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance --> Deep rich brown colour allowing only a twinkling of ruby coloured light through. Head has a slightly brown hue to it with marginal lacing.

Smell --> Chocolate and caramel are predominant but coffee makes an appearance in the background.

Taste --> Chocolate characters hit you up front with caramel notes lingering closely behind. A subtle coffee flavour finds itself teasing its way through the middle and a nice soothing bitter finishes things off. Great progression!

Mouthfeel --> Smooth but not quite silky texture gently coats the tongue. The slight carbonation of the beer is just right and doesn't detract from the texture.

Drinkability --> This was an exceptional beer and matches wonderfully with chocolate dessert! It's exactly what I would expect from a great Porter. This is a definite must try!

Photo of CrazyMike
3.93/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Has a rich and sweet taste as well as being dark and malty. Almost like chocolate. Definatly an interesting mixture of taste. It was almost closer to a specialty coffee then a beer.

I was very impressed by this beer and would recommend it. Strong but goes down smooth. Appearance wise it has the properties of a traditional ale and has a sweet aroma.

Photo of FLAbeergutinMASS
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

With all the quiet fuss about this beer, I had a little trouble getting to it with so many local Porters available in New England. Trying not to be partial, IMO fresher = better.

Picked up this one at Ryan and Casey in Greenfield. They have a selection British beers, from what I can tell don't move very often. Considering this beer relatively low ABV I think its a bit old.

Nonetheless a tasty offering. Deep, complex chocolate and roasted malt flavor. A little flat on the nose, slight wafts of cherry. A smooth beaut on a cold evening. Goes down easy in front of a roaring fire. At $3.00 a bottle, it's good to go.

Photo of maddamish
4.61/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is what a porter should be.

A slight caramel is present in the nose.

But what it lacks in smell it makes up for in taste. This is one of the best porters I have had and was very pleased with the offering.

Taste: Caramel, malt and chocolate notes.

Medium bodied and thoroughly enjoyable

Photo of allergictomacros
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark purple-red-brown. So dark it's opaque. Lots of head and some lace.

Smell: Dark chocolate, coffee, molasses. Very heavy on molasses.

Taste: Up front tartness mellows quickly to a roasty bitterness. A little bit of fruit sneaks in as well.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy, but not chewy.

Drinkability: Very good. Enough taste and feel to be substantial but not so much that it fills you up, or is a chore to finish.

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

Classic Porter smell and look with a deep black body supporting a firm, two finger thick, mocha head. Roasted chocalate overtones and great malty, toasty and roasty mouthfeel. Well rounded and balanced with ample chocolate and coffee notes. Worthy of its praise.

Photo of DogFood11
3.57/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Best on date is 14 Jan '06. I'm sampling on 18 Jan '06. No big deal at all as it tastes fine as far as freshness. Really excited to review this as I've neglected it for years.

A chocolatey aroma slowly rolls out of the glass as I pour this dark brown to black brew. Lacing is sparing and sporadic, white head that fades to a small centered island.

Rich, rich brew...chocolate is a big part. roasted malts, and a fairly large hop bitterness in the middle. Its an amazing beer in that the taste is pretty complex and rich yet the mouthfeel is lighter and very drinkable. I could see sessioning this if the situation was right.

Notes: This is a nicely done to say the least. You must try this at least once, more for taste than for the whole package.

Photo of bennetj17
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

I was a bit sad when I poured this brew and virtually no head developed. The surface had some frothiness which mostly stayed in a ring around the inside of the glass. The color is like black coffee. The smell is faint, but you can detect chocolate, coffee beans, and marshmallow aromas. Very toasty. The taste is similar, with coffee flavor that is somewhat smoky. Decent bitterness. It seems average at first but improves very much over a few sips. The mouthfeel is slightly thinner than expected, and the carbonation is fairly low, although it doesn't necessarily feel flat. The overall flavor is solid and while not one of the best I've had, it seems like a beer that I could easily have a few rounds of, especially with the moderate alcohol content.

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Fuller's London Porter from Fuller Smith & Turner PLC
93 out of 100 based on 2,304 ratings.