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Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald PorterGreat Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,976 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 1,976
Hads: 6,200
Avg: 4.26
pDev: 17.37%
Wants: 603
Gots: 1,052 | FT: 25
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Porter | 6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-09-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,976 | Hads: 6,200
Photo of ypsifly
4.85/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Yep...this one lives up to the hype!

Dark and stout looking with a cream colored head of over 1" that leaves gobs of foamy lace as it goes down. I noticed some falling after pouring.

Smells of roasted malts and coffee, with some toffee or caramel thrown in. A slight hoppiness can be detected as it finishes.

Tastes of blended and roasted malts that start off in the direction of an Imperial Stout but quickly mellow with a slight sweetness that turns into a hop inspired dry finish. This one hits all the notes of the style perfectly.

The generous use of malts combined with just the right amount of hops and carbonation make for a perfectly full mouthfeel, and a very drinkable beer.

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Photo of karst
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bittersweet chocolate coffe aroma from a perfect apearing Stout from its dense 2-3 fing tan head to its clear dark(ruby red- against strong light) liquid. I filled a pint glass with Corral liquors and Schlafly advertized on its outside (This year's Schlafly Coffee Stout is great this year!) Thanks to Joe B. @ Corral in Granite City, Ill. for keeping his Great Lakes brews in Frig. and reminding me of the need to do the same due to its lack of pastuerization and preservatives!)

Inside the glass a persistant head (for stouts) settles leasurly, its remants clinging as sticky lace. Meanwhile I'm huffing the aroma from Pale English Crystal and Chocolate malts with roasted Barley mingled with Northern Brewer, Kent Golding and Cascade botanicals- all providing a bold hop presence to play pranks on my tongue and palate.

A tast that matches the aroma is very pleasing to the palate. Its well balance "fat" medium body (excellent for style) A subtile aftertaste that gives you a long loving bite with its low bitterness and roasted malts. At 45°F I drink it slowly anticipating its evolving tastes as it warms. With each warming tilt of my glass it shows off its excellent complexity and fine balance of hops and sweet roasted malts.

THE best Porter that I have tasted to date - Leaves me wondering if the smooth, well balanced dry coffeish taste can be improved

note: ABV had dropped 0.5% since Michael Jackson gave it an excellent review in his Great Beer Guide 2000 ed.

A last swirl - it easily awakens and sends up a dying coating of fine bubbles (great C02 level). A great Ship to go down on. We will cross again!

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Photo of Gaisgeil
4.32/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What can I say about this fine porter that hasn't already been said? This is the sort of porter that other porters aspire to be like, this is the Michael Jordan of porters as far as I'm concerned, all kneel before the altar and say a prayer, because it's over folks.

This is a perfect mid-winter in front the fireplace sort of beer. It's hearty and filling and highly drinkable. It pours a dark black with a respectable copper brown head. The nose is a bit sweet with an organic grain overtone to it, you smell how hoppy it is too, makes my brain scream "Pavlovian response!!". The initial taste isn't explosive, more understated and subtle than that, but lives up to it's nose perfectly. A slight dark chocolate creaminess surrounded by an almost black tea like organic overtone but there is also a strong, strong hop character here with roasted coffeebean and a dry aftertaste that stays with the palate long after swallowed. The mouthfeel is gorgeous, silky and balanced.

Great Lakes did a wonderful job in the design and execution of a truly great porter. There may be better in the style out there, but I sure haven't had it.


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Photo of gimmehead
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours the darkest brown with a healthy two finger head, the remnants of which endure to the end. Aroma is roasted malts and bittersweet chocolate. Taste is what you would expect of a good porter ( chocolate, coffee, a bit smoky at the end) but with more hop balance, creating a wonderful aftertaste that begs for another gulp. Good thick mouthfeel, this is a beer I can (and on occasion have) drink all night.

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Photo of Maestro
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nearly black with a thin head that sticks around for the entire beer. The nose is quite amazing. Lots of roasty, chocolatey, coffee-like notes right off the bat. Some hints of grape and caramel are noticeable as well. Taste is incredible. There is a certain smoothness to the beer. The malts are quite varied. There seems to be some roasted malts, along with some caramel malts to balance out the black patent. Very good ratios for this American Porter. Mouthfeel is quite bubbly and has just the right feel for a porter. It's not too dry and it's not too sweet. This is truly a great beer that can be enjoyed in many circumstances!

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Photo of Tballz420
4.82/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This brew is a black colored creation, with red/brown light hues. Small brown head leaves sheets of lace in its wake. Excellent chocolate malt scent. Taste features delicious chocolate malts, tone of roaste also come through, followed by excellently blended bitter hops. Full creamy mouth. Im not the biggest porter fan but this one was amazing.

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Photo of meathookjones
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This was from a 12oz bottle sampled on 12/17/04. This can out of the bottle looking a deep brown that was almost void of light passing through. A top the body rose about an inch worth of tan foamy head that disappears fairly quickly leaving some rings of lace. A strong roasty malt aroma was first noticed before the chocolate malt set in. Very rich in the nose. Coffee was also present. The taste was a mix of bittersweet chocolate over a roasted malt and coffee. There was a good amount of earthy bitterness present as well. This ends on a slightly bitter roasted coffee note. Mouthfeel was about medium but fell a little short but was still creamy and rich. Good drinkability here as the mix of flavors keep this interesting and well balanced. This is definitely up there on my porter list. Thanks to clvand0 for the chance to try this great beer.

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Photo of crookedhalo
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deepest brown color with a light tan head. Good roasty malt profile with all the coffee and chocolate notes one tends to expect from a porter. Fairly hopped, which is a nice addition to any porter. Aggresively roasty, slightly fruity and mildly hoppy; makes for a beautiful balance. Wickedly drinkable. Probably Great Lakes best offering, in my opinion.

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Photo of Sixpoint
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I think it is fair to say that this beer has become legendary in its own right. When I think of some the classic (readily-available) American microbrewed porters, I think of Deschuttes Black Butte Porter, the Alaskan Smoked Porter, and yep, this one.

It's pretty amazing this beer has become so popular in the Midwest, where the majority of beer drinkers - and even craft beer drinkers - don't lean towards the darker beers. I can see how this beer has converted many -

For me, the most amazing thing about this beer was the balance. There was such a perfect amount of flavor hops in the finish, it perfectly balanced the toffee/roastedness of the grain bill.

Remarkably, you could smell these hops in the nose of the beer, and it was enticing everytime I took another sip.

I'm glad this beer is becoming more and more readily available. And I just heard the rumour it's going to hit the NYC market soon too.

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Photo of heidelbeerg
4.38/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one exceptional porter. The best I've had. Pours a very dark, almost black with a garnet tinge when held up tp the light. Head is tan, thick rocky and holds up well. Leaves a nice lace on the glass. The smell is roasted coffee and maybe molasses. The taste is very rich coffee and dark cocoa with a perfect balance of hops. Carbonation was perfect. Mouthfeel thick and creamy. drinkability is dangerously good. You gotta try this one.

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Photo of brewQ
4.13/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The bottle said best by 0704 but I don't think the style was worse for wear in November.

Excellent looking beverage- nearly black, opaque body covered by a chunky, truly brown head. The aroma was that of a good bakery with coffee pouring. Malt and sweetness abound.

A full taste without being cloying. Not as alkaline as some Porters strike me. Leaves with a nice clean finish.

This is a Prince among Porters. Since it isn't available in my area, I forgot about it, despite having lived in Ohio for nearly ten years.

My wife picked this up for me in Wisconsin when I asked for Lakefront! Well, it worked out good.

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Photo of mkopera24
4.52/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is now one of my favorite porters that I've ever had. I actually brought out one of my many beer books to look up the definition of a porter and it fit perfectly. The appearance was a dark brown/black not totally opaque. The perfect ammount of carbonation. A few trails up the glass after pouring. The smell of it is a combination of a chocolate/coffee/sweetness. The aftertaste is mostly chocolate and long lasting. Mouthfeel, is smooth and thick. You know you have a good porter when you want to savor and drink this beer slowly to enjoy every second of consumption. I'm quickly becoming a very big fan of the Great Lakes Brewery.

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Photo of karengarys
4.1/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I usually hide the ratings so I can rate beers unbiased. Unfortunately I knew ahead of time this was a top hitter - I hope that hasn't biased my review.

This pours transparent black, or deep deep brown. It poured up with a nice head, which remained to some extent throughout the drink. Towards the end there was a filming and ring around the edge. Some lacing was stuck to the glass. Quite nice.

Smells good, nice and unsweetened choclatey with a hop hint.

Tastes is very smooth chocolate with a nice hoppy balance. I don't know how they get a floral scent in the taste, but it is wonderful.

Mouthfeel is quite nice and creamy.

The finish (oops, I just finished it) - the finish is also creamy, with bitter almost coffee like notes at the back of the throat. It really is more chocolate like.

It does leave a slight bitter aftertaste.

This is a really good brew. Try it, even if you don't like porters.

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Photo of ALESwhatCURESya
3.85/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a very nice example of what a porter should taste like. This baby is pitch black and is dripping with roasted barley taste. I could pick up vanilla and coffee undertones. The only thing about this beer is that it is almost a little too intense for a porter. The flavors would not be appreciated by rookie porter and stout drinkers. All-in-all, this is a fabulous roasted, nutty, porter that is a fine example of the style.

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Photo of deejaydan
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I really enjoy this porter. Leaves decent lacing on the glass, has a choclatey sweet aroma, slight roasty hint in the aroma as well. Taste is very well balanced between hoppiness and maltiness, almost like a struggle on your tounge. The Maltiness and roasty flavors come through in the finish. It's not as if I could taste hops, but I could tell they were there, ya know? I could see myself drinking this beer all night long...

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Photo of clvand0
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've had some good brews from Great Lakes Company, so I had high hopes for this one. Pours a dark brown color with a medium tan head that sticks around and leaves some nice lacing on the glass. The aroma was very strong with roasted malts, coffee, and chocolate. The flavor was just how I like it: thick body and extra malty. Has a nice chocolate and coffee flavor and is extremely smooth.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured clear brownish black with a ruby highlight. The head was brown, large, and in charge. It coated the glass as it fell and laced it as the beer was consumed.

The aroma was deep bittersweet chocolate and a strong expresso coffee presence. Some fruitiness developed as the beer warmed and was consumed. Caramel flavors were present but took a backseat to the chocolate and roastiness.

The flavor was bittersweet chocolate and expresso coffee with a substantial bittering component that added complexity. The flavors were well blended yet still maintained an individuality which added complexity to the flavor.

The finish was bitter chocolate and coffee lasting long into the aftertaste and drying out to bone dry in the final analysis. The body was medium.

12 ounce bottle. Add some oats and roasted barley, boost the body and this would stand as a well as a stout. Very well done.

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Photo of Dithyramb
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampled at the Great Lakes restaurant this Tuesday night. Served at just the right temperature in an imperial pint glass. Since it was getting chilly out, I was looking for something hardy to wash down the spicy mustard coated barley pretzels. Our very nice waitress immediately suggested the porter.
Color was the shade of a roasted chestnut. It was flirting with opaqueness, but showed a deep, dark brownness when put to the light. There was dense tan foam that lasted through at least half of the pint. Even then, a gooey lacing was spaced well. Some nice carbonation was bubbling along the inside of the glass.
A cocoa and caramel smell was predominant with just a whiff of woodsy stuff on the backend.
All the tasty porter flavors are here, with a very complex mix of bitter and sweet malts. The bitter coffee and sweet toffee malts just ooze over your tongue. A very faint hop is in there somewhere, but not much. Given my choice of food and attitude this evening, the GL porter is exactly what I needed/wanted. The porter has a very full body. It finishes dry in your mouth, but leaves a bit of the clingy malts in there as well. Well worth a few, which is very difficult, given all the high quality taps at the restaurant.

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Photo of BrewMaster
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle with a creamy looking head over a glass of dark brown beer. The aroma is roasty with a bit of alcohol sweetness to it. The taste is full of crisp roastiness with chocolate, toast, caramel, and ending with a touch of floral hop flavor. It has a medium body on the palate with a clean finish.

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Photo of garymuchow
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Many thanks to WVbeergeek for this great bottle of brew.

Drank sample just under best by date.
Aroma shows nice raost malt with a hint of sweetness. Has a stout like quality. Little hints of butterscotch.
Pours black, but red hues in the light. Appears clear. Full head that recedes slowly. Sporadic lacing.
Wonderful roast flavors. Chocolate, a little coffee and bittersweet (as the label says). Pleasing longish dry finish.
May be a bit thin, otherwise great carbonation balance. Good softness both in feel and carbonation.
This is what I think of when I think of a porter. Gold standard status for me, just wish I could get this regularly.

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Photo of edchicma
4.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to wyllder for this exceptional brew! Poured almost black with a beautiful light chocolate head taht lasts...nice lacing. Smell is rich...malt...coffee...chocolate. Taste likewise is malt, coffee, chocolate...balanced with a nice hop presence throughout. Mouthfeel is a tad chewy....with a dry casting produced by the hopping. Smoooth on the drinkability scale...road trip to Cleveland???? Great brew.

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Photo of BarrelBrother
4.87/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

When the winters turn brutal in the Chicagoland area, I love a deep, dark, aromatic brew for those long winter nights by the fireplace. I search out the porters, stouts, Irish & Scotch ales that promise deep, rich flavor to warm your soul and relax your mind. Well EFP (Edmund Fitzgerald Porter) meets all these qualities in spades and keeps me ordering a case a month through those long winter nights even after the holidays. If you like porters this one is an excellent example of combining aroma, taste, and drinkability into one outstanding brew.

Deep garnet in color when held to the light, a strong toasty, chocolate/carmel aroma and a taste that always satisfies with multiple taste overtones (especially a subtle semi-sweet chocolate flavor) keeps me coming back for more. The mouthfeel is as close to velvet in your mouth that I could imagine. I can sip on these all night long, actually I have! Alcohol content is not too high to prevent quaffing a number of these beauties. An outstanding American porter. If you favor deep, dark, flavorful brews try EFP, you'll be glad you did.

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Photo of Crosling
3.31/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3


Moderately aromatic, with notes of currants, sweet malts, dark malts, chocolate, bold hops, onions and alcohol.

The malts provide notes of prunes, coffee and chocolate while other notes of brown sugar and molasses are present. The hops are bold and very prominent but in this porter it just didn't work. Too hoppy for its style in my opinion.

Not that good.

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Photo of skybluewater
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally, I get to try this one, which I've heard a lot about. Bottle says "Enjoy by Jul 22 /04"-Oops! Pours what appears to be black, but is really dark mahogany. In fact, I can actually see through this beer. Big, big head recedes, leaving a tiny bit of lace. Smells like a chocolate coffee bar, very nice. Taste is of bitter coffee and chocolate.

Very quaffable porter here (the fact that it's past due really didn't affect the taste, although I'd love to try a fresh sample), but I probably wouldn't travel long distances for it again (I got this in Wisconsin). But if you see it somewhere, don't hesitate to grab a sixer or two for those cold days ahead. Just be sure to check the date!

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Photo of gentlebubbles
4.23/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Milk chocolate fluff of moderately coarse foam builds up to an inch or so, and presently sighs away. Dark chocolate resists the passage of light, letting through the barest ruby highlight.

Sweet winey, raisiny scent lingers all the way down the glass.

Fruity, plummy chocolate with hints of smoke and a lingering port-like finish which morphs into more smoke that licks around the lips. And meanwhile sticky sweet malt glues itself tingling to the tongue as a subtle piney resin slowly emerges. Whoa. This is getting interesting.

Light-bodied. Moderate carbonation. Easy to drink. A tasty, right down the middle and out of the park home run porter.

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Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 1,976 ratings.