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

2,357 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,357
Reviews: 1,177
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 10.26%
Wants: 204
Gots: 245 | 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.
View: Beers (35) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Fuller's London Porter Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,357 | Reviews: 1,177
Photo of dragonWhale
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Skep.. Can't remember seeing this on draught anywhere else before. Maybe I never looked..

Dark brown with a beige head creaming my tremens snifter. I shake at the possibilities.
Big chocolatey nose, some roast in there, and a secret something, slightly fruity, esters buried?
Fantastic smooth chocolate bite that finishes very dry, roast and coffee in excellent complement.
First sip and I was hooked, even slightly too cold. Dry and smashing the entirety of my mouth. Brilliant malt bill. Extremely drinkable, didn't realize I was going to be such a fan.

Photo of jmalex
4.54/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Perhaps the beer that turned me onto porters in the first place. Ironic it was an English one when now I buy pretty much all American porters. That wasn't going to stop me from grabbing a six pack of the original.

APPEARANCE: Pours into my new Sam Adams glass a deep brown that is only the slightest bit translucent when held to light. With illumination, ruddy red highlights are apparent. The head is small and lowers to just a small bubbly patch - no doubt aided by the etchings at the bottom of the glass. As I drink further, no sign of a head can be seen.

SMELL: Roasty, ROASTY! Big and heavy on coffee aromas. Bitter black malts come through as does a soft chocolatiness. And if you try real hard, the faintest bit of diacetyl comes through.

TASTE: Starts just a tad empty but the roasty flavors kick in fast. It's a bit bitter as it crosses the palate, and the finish is where most of the flavor lies. Just a bit buttery with another huge kick of roasted and black grains. Not too complex but incredibly executed.

MOUTHFEEL: Now this is what I'm talking about! A medium full body with just the faintest hint of chewiness. Carbonation level is medium and perfect for accentuating the flavors.

DRINKABILITY: An amazing drinker that is sessionable to boot. Give me more!

This is the beer that makes me reconsider my preference for the more hoppy American style porters. I love them both, but Fuller's is downright near perfect.

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

I’ve been in dozens of liquor stores, both in Indiana and not, and I’ve only seen Fuller’s London Porter in one of them. Suffice to say, I had to buy a six-pack when I found it.

Probably brewed a few years ago, as the best by date is just five months after the date of this tasting (“BEST BEFORE 27 NOV 12”).

A: This porter is dark as ever, pouring a dark brown with tons of shining caramel-red hues. Lots of bubbly tan cream for a head, bubbling up to two fingers of fullness. A layer of silk serves as the retention, with some short chunks of lacing coming just above the body.

S: Chocolate and coffee erupts from my glass; I literally pulled my head back with surprise as soon as I stuck my nose in it. Toffee, vanilla, and caramel are ridiculously savory, riding on a chocolaty backbone that smells too rich to be just 5.4% alcohol – how did they get that much in there?! The rest of it is all dark fruits and roasts: chocolate-covered raisin, whipped cream, fresh-ground cappuccino, and darkly-kilned grains. No denying, this is one of the best first impressions I’ve ever gotten from the nose of a beer.

T: Porter-lover or not, I can imagine this palate being a religious experience for anyone who enjoys dark beer. Robust flavors of coffee and cream meld with chocolate overtones with smooth mocha creaminess. Toasted bread and smoke make the tastes ripe with earthy bitterness, firmly grounding the palate in bitterness as it’s washed over with nutty complexity. Fig, honey, malted milk balls, wheat bread crust, sesame oil, and floral hops pan out over the remainder. Finishes with a mouthful of coffee and charred wood, but without being noticeably dry. One of the finest examples of an English porter I’ve ever had.

M: This one comes out smooth and milky, with a thinness that’s charming than unpleasant. It goes down silky while remaining drinkable the whole time.

O: The bottle shop where I bought this wouldn’t sell singles, so I got a six-pack; and man, how great that turned out to be. Knowing that I have five more of these in my fridge is a wonderful feeling – this beer hits so many marks that I know I’d be going back for more if this were my only bottle.

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

It's been a few years since I've had this beer. I forgot how great this beer is!

Poured a very dark brown with a faint coppery rootbeer color around the edges. It has a short tan head with no lacing.

Very nice dark rich smell with notes of dark malt, prunes and chocolate.

Full bodied flavor transitions smooth from dark maltiness to a rich dark chocolate, finishing with espresso. The aftertaste is such a smooth pleasant espresso aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is very smooth and creamy. With a light creamy carbonation.

Overall I love this beer. This is the ideal benchmark for what I think a porter should be. Beautiful full bodied flavor with wonderful chocolate and coffee notes. I recommend this to all. I gotta try to keep this on deck at all times.

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

A pitch black beer with a thinoff-white head and very little visible carbonation.

Smell is mildly burned with coffee notes and molasses. The is a pale malty backbone, which backs up this roastiness. Then there is also a smell of dark, unsweetend chocolate.

Taste is maltbitter, but mild, with coffee, chocolate and cacoa. Hops give the beer an earthy bitter and hoppiness, which is also a bit resinous. Mouthfeel is extremely smooth. This all sounds like another porter, but the amazing balance between the burned taste and malt and hops, make this beer stand out. Also the way the burned taste develops when emptying the glass is a sign of a lot of craftmanship.

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

Top to bottom, this is an utterly fabulous porter. Light barely gets through this one. Coffee-brown/black with a huge head on the pour and spectacular drapes of lacing. Coffee roast in the aroma, but in a mocha icing or coffee-cream-filled box chocolate type of way. As it warms, chocolate notes do come through more in the smell as well. A light-moderate hoppy bitterness seems to poke through and some really faint fruitiness. And this is all in the aroma! Soft roasty tones show strongest of all the flavors, with a mild lingering bitterness and bite. Mocha in the middle, coffee and light molasses come late. It's not an intense taste - and it drops off somewhat early (little aftertaste) - but it's balanced expertly.

This just drinks so elegantly - bloody creamy and smooth, not heavy, but with enough weight that it sits a bit. Fairly dry finish, which begs frequent sips and multiple pints.

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

Absolutely brilliant! Pours from the bottle a very dark with ruby highlights when held up to a light, with a frothy tan head that head that lasts about 3 minutes. Aromas are predominately of sweet malts, with roasty notes taking a back seat. Strong toffee and slightly less intense chocolate aromas hit me first; I also detect notes vaguely reminiscent of hazelnut coffee. Taste-wise, the front and mid-palate are very evenly balanced between these sweet and bitter elements. Finishes long on with a tasty toffee character. Medium-light body with moderate carbonation feels smooth through and through. Intensity-wise, it's flavors are not strong enough to pair with chocolates, but, when had all its own, this is one of my very favorite beers.

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

This beer sets the standard for porters in my opinion.

She pours a ruddy brown with a smallish head that has good retention and lacing.

The smell is very roasty and nutty, with a bit of bitter chocolate in there as well. A wee bit of alcohol is floating around.

The taste is the quintissential porter. Roasty, some dried fruit, toffee, chocolate, caramel...this beer is just loaded with tons and tons of flavor. Very complex and delicious, I cannot imagine a better tasting porter.

The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. Medium body with decent carbonation.

I could drink this beer all night, delicious and highly drinkable. Stellar beer.

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 burnstar
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Pours a very dark brown with a medium light tan head. Aroma is dark roasted malt with coffee notes and some floral hops. Nice malty taste. Notes of dark chocolate, coffee and dark fruit. Nice background sweetness. A few herbal hops. Just a bit of bitterness from the dark malt. Quite balanced, nuanced, and delicious. Mouthfeel is medium and just about right for this beer. Very drinkable and a great porter overall.

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

Every bit as good as I hoped it would be. I hit the jackpot when Andy's North Campus here in Columbus sent an e-mail that they had cases of this for $11.99. Excellent roasted aroma with hints of chocolate. Rich, dark color with a thin head. Hearty coffee/chocolate flavor that neither dissipated nor overpowered. One of the best beers I have tried.

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

Pint at Volo and also from cans and bottles. The beer arrives with a wonderful dark body and a nice foamy tan head. The aroma is of coffee and chocolate, and is extremely enticing! Very smooth - like drinking an espresso chocolate cake covered in cream. I find this to be far better on cask than the bottled and canned versions.

Photo of McKeester31
4.56/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice, toasty Porter without The ridiculous amounts of sweetness that can ruin a Porter.

Photo of Gear54
4.56/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a bottle into a pint glass.

A: pitch black with a thin layer of wispy foam atop the brew. Moderate lace

S: strong notes of coffee and dark chocolate fill the nose while malts are noticeable but only slightly.

T: follows the smell exactly. This is a very full flavor beer with lots of coffee and dark chocolate.

M: this one surprised me. I expected it to be on the heavy side based in looks and smell but I would call it medium at best. I would have liked it a bit thicker maybe...

O: My first time trying this one and I was not disappointed. I'm a huge fan of porter and stout style beers and this fit right it! Buy some and see for yourself.

Photo of geexploitation
4.57/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep black with molasses highights. Big, vulgar bubbles form the head and quickly fade to just a ring. The aroma is a huge improvement on the appearance; big malty chocolate aromas (think malted chocolate milk) jump right out, along with crispy roasted malts and just a hint of fruity sweetness (raspberry?). Beautifully balanced mouthfeel, with some roughness from roasted malts and some hops coexisting perfectly with a slickness not far from an oatmeal stout's. Tasty chocolate notes, along with dry roasted malt notes, form the backbone of this beer, but there are also earthy hops and a bit of smoke in the palate. This is truly a wonderful porter, one of the best English examples of the style that I have ever tasted.

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

I've just made a cola float lol

this pint makes my mouth water that lovely looking tan head

ow wow that big coffee hit in the aroma along with full on roasts and chocolate notes.

The bottle says Rich Dark and complex well the first two are more than true real velvety and a big chocolate kiss with and a real expresso body.

Slightly thin on the mouthfeel though this makes this an easy drinker other than that spot on all round.

Photo of samie85
4.57/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Orignally reviewed 4/26.

A-Pours a cola color with a what looks like quite a bit of carbonation and a one finger white head.

S-Coffee, vanilla, chocolate and a hint of cinnamon.

T-Rich chocolate and coffee notes; also vanilla. Finishes with a dry roasty subdued bitternes.

M-Rich and luxuriously thick. The over-carbonated appearance is not present here.

D-Really, really easy drinking, delcious and complex porter. I'll be sure to revisit this one.

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

Package: 12 oz. tall, narrow brown bottle. “Best before 19/Sep/03.” No indicated ABV, although Fuller’s lists it as 5.4% in bottles.

Cost: $7.49 per 6-pack at Total Wines.

Presentation: Poured into pint glass at ~45º

Appearance: Almost stout-like at first glance, one realizes that this is not opaque, but deeply translucent brown-burgundy. Formed a moderately dense, sticky, head, with a medium bead, which resolved to a very thin layer that lasted half-way through the glass. May have been affected by having been poured into a “used” glass, recently vacated by a Fuller’s London Pride.

Smell: The malts dominate here issuing aromas of burnt sugar, smoke, and toasted grain. As is typical with Fuller’s, the nose is restrained but complex, improving as it warms.

Taste: A veritable Greek Chorus of malts awaits the lucky person holding the glass. Brown, Crystal, and Chocolate malts produce a rich variety of flavors: dark fruits, wood-smoke, vanilla, dark toast, nuts, unsweetened chocolate, coffee, and the classically British diacetyl. The Fuggles issue a plaintive, but noticeable cry against the Full-Nelson applied by the malts. Has a long, lingering, creamy finish.

Mouthfeel: Very nice carbonation; noticeable but not intrusive. Allows the malts and rich body to achieve a lovely creaminess. The buttery elements coat the tongue, prolonging the beer’s lovely flavors. Smooth and silky.

Drinkability: Another great-drinking beer from Fullers. This is a medium-bodied porter that drinks like a mild ale. Don’t let its dark color scare you away. This is a wonderfully balanced brew.

Another stunner from Fullers. The orchestration of malts is deftly done, providing a wonderfully satisfying porter. An archetype of the style, which is even better on draught. I regard Fuller’s as an old friend, who always has the right encouraging words. A standard inhabitant at the top of my beer rotation along with the ESB and 1845.

Bottom Line: The perfect porter for quaffing.

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

Very dark brown in color with a thin head. Aroma is a nice roasted maltiness which mellows into a caramely sweetness as the beer warms. Taste starts off sharply with some hop flavor and coffee-like malt. The malt becomes more caramely mid-palate, and ends with a roasty, bitter, dry finish. Medium-full body. Quite a nice porter.

Photo of horshack7
4.57/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Out of a twelve ounce bottle it pours a very dark brown with amber hues. The head is lacey and foamy about an inch worths.

Aromas: Tremendous chocolate malt notes along with hints of coffee. Slight burnt hop notes.

Taste: A slightly crisp mouthfeel. Big chocolate malt notes with slight caramel notes. Very full bodied with robust coffee flavors. Burnt hops dance around the pallate with a smooth finish.

Notes: This is a remarkable English porter. This one could me through the coldest of winter nights.Cheers

Photo of donteatpoop
4.57/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Great beer.

Poured a chocolate brown color with a small creamy tan head.

The smell was very enticing, coffee grounds and chocolate. My mouth was watering in anticipation.

My mouth was not disappointed. The chocolate and coffee blended beautifully on my tongue. Holy crap, it's like my tongue just had an orgasm.

It had a nice full mouth feel, as I'd expect from a porter, but the carbonation level seemed a bit high to me - jabbing at my tongue with sharp little bubbles.

Great beer. Wait, did I say that already? Well it's true. Definately something I'll be drinking again and again.

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

Yeah, baby! From the great deep, clear, mahogany brown pour with tan head that laced, to the intense chocolate malt aroma, this one’s a winner. Sips tasted malty with powdery burnt toast/charcoal, and finished hoppy. Rich, full bodied – thinning as it warms. Defiantly a smooth porter to quaff and judge others.

Fuller's London Porter from Fuller Smith & Turner PLC
93 out of 100 based on 2,357 ratings.