Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...
Dismiss Notice
Join The Buzz! Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest BeerAdvocate updates delivered to your inbox.

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
94
outstanding

1,165 Reviews
THE BROS
95
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,165
Hads: 2,394
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 8.29%
Wants: 212
Gots: 265 | 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: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Fuller's London Porter Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,165 | Hads: 2,394
Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.05/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Ok folks, note the suggested serving temperature. If you drink this cold, it is a mess. Enjoy the beer slightly below room temp to catch all the nuances.

Appearance - The beer was a brownish-black color with a slight white head.

Smell - The aroma was largely that of malts and burnt sugar. When I had this one cold, I did not really notice anything interesting about the aroma.

Taste - The initial taste demonstrated the malts, burnt sugar, and a little hint of dark chocolate. Some drinkers may note the presence of dark fruits and bread. Toward the back, the aftertaste runs dry. The burnt sugar leans more toward the tart side, almost like drying the tongue with a wet paper towel.

Mouthfeel - This is a very smooth and creamy porter, almost as though it is on Nitro right from the bottle.

Overall -This is an excellent example of the style. I tend to think of English Porters as being slightly sour. This beer lacks that element. Other than this flaw, it is very enjoyable. (983 characters)

Photo of puboflyons
4.01/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From the 11.2 fl oz. bottle marked 12 DEC 14-316-13:56. Sampled on May 25, 2014.

The pour is dark brown with ruby red hues and a short-lived off-white head. Decent lacing.

The aroma has a nice dark malt, smoky, and clean, crisp hop note. It smells the way a traditional English Porter should smell.

The body is light to medium.

The taste does highlight some of the toasty malty characters and biscuit. Mild finish. I mean, it is one of the Porters that others strive to emulate. (482 characters)

Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.3/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a shaker pint glass.

Look: Dark cola colored body. A tan head dissipates to a wifey film as light lines of lacing remain on the glass.

Aroma: Loads of sweet cocoa, chocolate, roasted malts.

Taste: Sweet chocolate malts, roasted grains and barley, faint coffee, with a tangy finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light, smooth.

Overall: Really impressed with the coffee and chocolately flavors. (401 characters)

Photo of abeeronthebeach
3.78/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Deep, dark brown. Sloshes around in the glass nicely with a solid head.

S - Burned sugar, char, peat and roasted malt. Could be fuller.

T - Char, mildly toasted malt. Roastiness and burned caramel. Unfortunately I can't help finding regular porters taste watered down compared to their Imperial brethren.

M - Smooth, and appropriately carbonated. A little thin and watery.

O - An easy-drinking and very sessionable porter which I'd gladly opt for if having a few pints with friends at a pub. (499 characters)

Photo of Bone53
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a snifter at around 45°F

Appearance: Brown with a mahogany tent when put up to the light. Two to threw finger beige head

Smell: Sweet caramel and toffee malts

Taste: Caramel and toffee upfront which transitions into burnt said notes on the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body; slight bitterness and goes down smooth

Overall: I havent explored too deeply in to English porters, but this is the best one iv tried. I much prefer American style porters (Founders, Smuttynose, Eddy Fitz). I prefer more of a chocolate/roasted malt/smoke presence rather than burnt caramel/toffee (599 characters)

Photo of scotorum
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the 11.2 oz. bottle into a Samuel Smith English tulip pint.

a: Clear dark ruby with a two inch tall tan head which receded slowly to thick even surface foam and dense lacing.

s: Caramel malt and black coffee.

t: Similar to the nose, a nice combination of sweet caramel malt, black coffee and dark chocolate. At first bitterness lingers at the sides of the tongue, but this smooths out later. Slight black coffee and dark chocolate aftertaste.

m: Light to medium with good body, although there are some hints of wateriness.

o: A tasty and refined porter. Very easy drinking and sippable. I'll have to revisit Founders' Breakfast Stout to recall what that has that this one apparently does not besides higher ABV and "fuller" body, based on the differences in the BA ratings of the two. (802 characters)

Photo of SFNC
4.51/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle dated 9/19/2013,

The color is dark brown, nearly black, but with ruby highlights when struck by light. A short tan head quickly disolves with minimal lacing.

This smells rich, with char, coffee and dark chocolate tempered with a sweet toffee scent. The taste is even better. The heavy roasted malts and coffee flavor is upfront and strong, but without any harshness. After the intial taste, it mellows with a bittersett toffee flavor that lingers at the finish. This beer has great balance!

It's very creamy, maybe a little thinner than expected, but has the just right carbonation to leave you wanting to take another sip.

This was a treat that I will not hestiate to go back to when in the mood for a lower ABV dark beer or Porter. Fuller's London Porter has earned it's world class reputation in my book. Well done, indeed! (858 characters)

Photo of Rowlaw
4.94/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is the best beer I've ever tasted. I love porters and Fuller's London Porter is the Porter all other Porter's want to live up to.

I know. You never want to say one beer is the best. You want to keep searching for the perfect beer. The fun is in the hunt. I'll say this is the Pest beer I've tasted so far. But just as I'm getting sick of the coffee and chocolate added flavoring, this one blends the tastes right without tasting like their just adding fake flavorings. Yes, you've got the tastes of chocolate and coffee and maybe a little dark honey or whatever, but what I really taste is a great heavy (as in rich), complex Porter without the heaving overpowering flavors added.

This Porter just blends the flavors together so they just flow over the palette to make a smooth, velvet flow of deliciousness. (816 characters)

Photo of doktorhops
4.12/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love a good porter, a GOOD porter, and this one is up there with the titans of porter - along with Irish dry stout one of the first styles of beer I actually got in to (Guinness being my first beer love). When I finally noticed a bottle of this at my not-so-local-but-on-the-way-to-work I had to immediately get it and review it. And so I did dammit. After 8hrs of work that is.

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a nonic pint.

A: Dark chocolate (a word I suspect I will be using frequently in this review) body with a firm 0.5cm tan head. Looks like a grand old porter to me.

S: Dark chocolate (yep!) gives way to some roasted chicory, vanilla, cigar tobacco and a hint of lingering smoke. Suitably impressed with all the hallmark porter characters together at last ready to act out some supreme theatre on my taste buds.

T: Velvety smooth flavours of the above: dark chocolate, roasted chicory, vanilla, cigar tobacco and smoke. This is one classic porter feast for the tongue. One criticism though, and it is very true to style so it's not a problem of this ale, but it's a bit too smooth and the flavours are less pronounced than I would like them to be. Again this is more an underlying personal view on porters as a whole due to my changing tastes than a direct criticism of this fine ale.

M: Heavy like a good porter/stout with a creamy texture and light carbonation.

D: As previously mentioned my tastes have changed over the years - I used to hate mushrooms and eggplant (I would have made a terrible Italian) but now I love them. I used to love porters and stouts but now I find them a bit boring. And that is the case with this ale, ten years ago we would have been best of friends but now I'm hanging out with Belgian tripels and IPA's and you know what those Belgians are like, bunch of troublemakers! I wont however let this diminish my rating of this fine example of a porter though.

Food match: I'm gonna have to stew on this one [literally]. (1,964 characters)

Photo of Flounder57
4.24/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

11.2 oz bottle was poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger mocha head that reduced to a thin layer. It is a dark brown/black color with no clarity or vision of bubbles coming up through the glass.

Smell: Robust, milk chocolate, bready malts, smoke, toffee, raisins, and caramel.

Taste: A nice blend of above aromas. Tasty and delicious.

Mouthfeel: Super smooth, medium bodied, a little chewy, and low to medium carbonation.

Overall: One of the best porters you could have. Another please. (521 characters)

Photo of fourstringer
4.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 11.2 oz bottle into a Sam Smith pint glass. Moderately aggressive hand. Label reads: Best before 25 Jul 14.

A: Very dark, essentially black, ruby-brown. 3 fingers of cream-colored head with good retention. Light lacing.

S: Roasted malt with nice toffee, chocolate and lesser coffee notes. Great nuttiness. Faint raisin. English hops.

T: Rich, chocolately malt initially. Blends with a fine English hopping. Semi-dry finish with roasted malty goodness residing in the aftertaste. No alcohol to speak of.

M: Moderate-to-low carbonation with a moderate-to-light body. Smooth & silky, although I could use a touch more fullness.

O: Solid porter with great chocolate notes and pleasant nuttiness. Great balance. Really drinks itself. Classic tastes. Highly sessionable.

Cheers! (796 characters)

Photo of Pintofbrown
4.46/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Had in a shaker pint. Best before July 25, 2014 bottle date.

An opaque dark brown body with crimson highlights greets the drinker. The creamy mocha-colored foam swells to two -fingers of bubbly stuff before receding, leaving behind a modest wall of almost sheet lace.

The nose reminds strongly of chocolate covered raisins, also some brown sugar. This porter has an incredibly decadent bouquet. Also a bit of wheat bread scent comes through when the glass is agitated, really, incredibly rich.

Flavors of coffee roast and dark breads are much larger on the palate than were noticed in the aromas. Mid-palate is where the bittersweet dark chocolate resides, fig also follows into the heavily roasted finish. There is a flash of chocolate covered raisin, but dissipates quickly. A light nuttiness blends with the roasted qualities and helps smooth out the finish. Very well balanced, and more bittersweet than the nose.

Appropriate for the style, this porter has a watery edge to it, slick over the tongue. The heft is on the lighter side of medium with a subtle creaminess, more dry than crisp.

Fuller's London Porter was a blast to drink, and so quaff-able. I could make an evening of just drinking this beer. The wonderfully sweet nose blends well with the complex palate of bittersweet, roasty, and bready flavors. (1,332 characters)

Photo of papat444
3.45/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a 500ml bottle, best before 27 OCT 14.

Pours a molasses-colored body, good head at first but doesn't stay long and not much lacing to speak of. Aroma is coffee grains, dark chocolate with roasted malt in the back. Medium strength coffee as main flavor, bit of bitter chocolate but the depth of the taste is not great. Slight metallic finish. Not full-bodied at all, middling. Average on most accounts. (414 characters)

Photo of JudgeRoughneck
4.41/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

AROMA - caramel, nut, goldings hops, creamy mocha-like character, - all medium-high in intensity, soft bready-nougat basemalt character manages to shine through amazingly...big plum and red apple notes, blackberry comes out eventually, no diacetyl, - really lovely.

APP- deep molasses with ruby highlights, low off-white head fades fast, medium low carbonation,

FLAVOR- medium-high sweetness balanced by coacoa flavor and roasty astringency, with medium-low burnt character in a long finish. low woody dimension and medium-high herbal hop flavor. medium coffee and blackberry is back again, as is the red apple...not much hop bitterness, no diacetyl, toasted nut on mid palate,

MF- full bodied, velvety, lightly and pleasantly astringent, medium-low carbonation,

OVERALL - complexity and depth of flavor are excellent, balance is sweet and then wiped off the palate by gentle but creeping roasted qualities, hoppiness comes through, I revisited this old favorite because BJCP has it listed as an example of "Brown Porter"...brown porter my ass, this is as robust as they come. (1,083 characters)

Photo of Act25
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: All right looking, out of a killer old fashioned bottle, ruby highlights, tan head, not much retention or lace. 3.5

S: Smoke, old wood, roasted malts, coffee, caramel. (very inviting - just right) 4

T: Powerful! Follows the smell. Wood fire, smoke, outdoors in fall leaves, coffee, toffee, caramel, roasted malts. Plenty complex, and arcs toward a smokey, dry, bitter finish. Nice ending. 4.25

M: Great weight and feel. Could session another. Finishes dry, bitter. Makes you immediately go for cheese, walnuts, grapes. (which I did) 4.25

O: Easy drinking, complex, balanced, urges you to sip it with some air coming in as you do to enhance the lovely smokey bouquet. Almost tobacco- smoke like, a sweet unfiltered Churchman's cigarette. 4.25 (748 characters)

Photo of bskrtz
4.02/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pint draft served very cold; served from bar tap

A) Dark brown/black root beer float. Light barely penetrates but cola clear.

S) Burnt baked goods, mild esters, licorice, fruity. Inviting.

T) Toasted malt, hints of espresso & dark bitter chocolate. I really enjoyed this beer. Very complex, I sipped it slowly.... Stout like in both taste and texture.

M) Ample carbonation, smooth, mild alcohol, slightly bitter

O) I really enjoyed this beer and would characterize it as a prime example of the Porter category. (518 characters)

Photo of LampertLand
4.09/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Fuller's 'London Porter' @ 5.4% , served from a 4pack of 440 ml cans purchased for $14

A-the pour is a dark brown from the can to to near black in the glass with some ruby red peeking thru a big tan head which is leaving a streaky lace along the pint

S-baker's chocolate

T-so smooth & creamy , slight bitter chocolate finish , so easy drinking

MF-good carbonation , weak meadium body

Ov-good beer , excellent English porter , seek and enjoy

prost LampertLand (464 characters)

Photo of mooseo
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle into snifter.

A - Pitch black with a small bubbly tan head.

S - Roasted malt, milk chocolate, a bit earthy but very pleasant.

T - Tasty blend of dark chocolate, toffee, and roasted malt. Just the right amount of sweetness. Finishes earthy with light coffee notes.

M - Smooth as silk. Medium bodied, creamy, low carbonation.

O - A porter that fully lives up to it's reputation. Delicious and easy to drink with a wide range of flavors. (451 characters)

Photo of Tavares
4.6/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a fridge cold, 500ml can into a pint glass. Smooth pour, about a finger and a half of a thick, off-white head. Dissipated quickly but left a decent amount of lacing. Very dark in colour with an amber hue.

Could smell it immediately after opening the can; very toasty, and toffee was the most prominent smell, followed by caramel. Could've just sat there and wafted it in.

Mouthfeel was creamy, with the light tingle of appropriate carbonation. Tastes like chocolate and good coffee, followed by a lingering hint of a hoppy bitterness to round it out. Sweet, dried fruit started to pop up as it warmed, adding further complexity.

I was in the mood for a stout or porter, and noticed this at the local LCBO, which is shamefully devoid of those styles. For whatever god awful reason, I had it in mind that Fuller's wasn't considered to be a good brewery, but I was quickly corrected after both checking the score on BA, and trying it for myself. Top notch brew, which I found to be immensely satisfying. Glad I bought two. (1,036 characters)

Photo of mverity
4.07/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from Proof Bottle Shop. Deep clear brown with a finger of tan head. Fair lacing with good head retention. Tons of caramel in the aroma with some noticeable toasted malt. Taste is still lots of caramel and dreads, with some deep maltiness. Great mouthfeel! Good carbonation, medium to full body. Perfect for the style! (324 characters)

Photo of ghisty
4.04/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

appearance:
pours smooth and dark, smooth head, amazing darkness, without visible gravity,
sandy colored silky foam, deep black with great lacing,

smell:
complex, deep, sweet almost nutty chocolate scent, with hints of malt,
reminds me of a warm plate of cake, and a creamy black espresso

taste:
once again complex, easy drinking, with a slight bitterness about halfway thru its range,takes a few seconds to level out, to a sweet flat end, the taste was initally alot sweeter, and as the pint sunk in it got more bitter and refined with the malts,
leaves a bitter aftertaste similar to strong coffee, not in a bad way tho.

mouthfeel:
starts sharp, once past the lips it gets levelled out and the taste kicks in,
goes almost flat before swallow which i one thing i love about fullers
makes it such an enjoyable drink as the amount of carb is perfect for the style.

overall:
so much I could say about this, fuller's has impressed me with all the offerings I've tried, seems most of the beer they make is very drinkable yet flavourful and not overstated, a porter like this, is perfect for an after dinner, and best enjoyed slowly,
although it is impressive, It isnt something I would drink regularly as the style is a bit heavy for my usual, but in the future I am sure I will buy this again , and if porters are your thing, you probably already know, this is a great one. (1,376 characters)

Photo of CalgaryFMC
4.37/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I love Fuller's as a brewery and I have waited a while to try this classic porter, not because it is particularly difficult to track down but because as a darker malty beer it keeps longer in my way overstocked beer fridge: Gotta drink the hoppy ones first to capture the fresh aromatics. Finally fished a bottle out because it was a cold porter or stout kind of night. Anyhow, many sources claim that a good porter is dark brown to blackish with beautiful ruby red highlights (e.g., see Foster's book on Porter in the Classic Beer Styles series). Lo and behold, that's exactly what this brew looks like, quite sexy. Yes, sexy. Aroma is rich chocolate, roasted chicory, sweet dried fruit, and a little English hop earthiness. A little like sniffing a bag of chocolate-covered raisins. Palate lives up to the hype, massive English malt rustic complexity coupled with dark rich aromatic flavors of treacle, butterscotch toffee, pipe tobacco, and a little leather. Some floral aromatics and a tangy sour note dance on top, and there is also a healthy blast of dark bread crust likely from genuine brown malt (highly kilned rather than stewed, but there's chocolate malt in here too), with the latter particularly prominent in the finish along with a little charcoal. Less sweet and sour and more rich and toasty than some other London porters, probably this one is the benchmark for the lot. Moderately thick body with a decent amount of carbonation but the finish is a nice earthy bitterness that prevents things from getting too sweet or bubbly. Should be on any English beer fan's top 10 list and you can even get this in cans now. (1,631 characters)

Photo of scratch69
4.63/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I poured a bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance- Clear, dark cola brown with a fingers worth of tan head. Generous amount of runny lacing.

Smell- Rich malt and chocolate aromas with a hint of some dark fruit as well.

Taste- Dark chocolate and coffee flavors with notes of toffee and nuts.

Mouthfeel- A very smooth, creamy medium body with a light amount of carbonation that's perfect in this beer.

Overall- This is one of the best porters that I've tried. I will be seeking this one again. (495 characters)

Photo of Mojo
4.26/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint Glass

As a major fan of porters, this one is about as good as they get. The pour is a beautiful mahogany brown, almost ebony with a luscious full two finger head which eventually fades to a small retention ring. Lacing is impressive too. All the great porter notes are present, coffee, chocolate, toffee, caramel, licorice, roasted nuts. The taste, easy drinking, follows the nose almost perfectly. What is really impressive is that flavors are very subtle and move seamlessly from one to the other culminating in a delightful roasted bitter finish. Mouthfeel is full, but not thick, and satisfying. This one is a must for fans of porters. (680 characters)

Photo of tmm313
4.62/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a dark, dark brown with a slight reddish hue. 1/2 finger head that quickly dissipates into nice ring. OK lacing.

Fruity malts, chocolate, coffee, sweet caramel and toffee, brown sugar, almost faint butterscotch.

Incredibly drinkable. Roasted malts, dark chocolate, coffee, roastiness and faint hops. Finish leaves nice chocolatey aftertaste with slight bitterness. Beautifully balanced.

Medium, creamy body with nice carbonation. Feels light on the tongue. Dry finish with slight lingering bitterness.

Overall: I really enjoyed this beer. I can easily picture myself drinking this as a session beer for a BBQ or steak cookout. Very well balanced, flavorful and light. I believe I've found myself a new go-to. (722 characters)

Fuller's London Porter from Fuller Smith & Turner PLC
94 out of 100 based on 1,165 ratings.