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Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,258 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,258
Reviews: 1,860
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 9.86%
Wants: 482
Gots: 475 | FT: 21
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-09-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,258 | Reviews: 1,860 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of SWMeyer4141
4.45/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

My 100th review

Appearance-Body is a light black, Very dark purple. Head is outstanding, 2 finger creamy brown head with some big bubbles and excellent retention. Haven't taken my first sip yet, it's been 5 minutes and theres still a nice 1/2 finger head with nice lacing.

Aroma-Very roasty. Dark, slightly bitter chocolate. Some dark fruits as well.

Taste-Initial taste was roasted malts, followed by some dark chocolate and sweet dark fruits. Slightly bitter towards the finish. As the beer warms a bit it opens up even more. More chocolate, more roastiness and some slight vanilla. Cleanest finish.

Mouthfeel-Light to medium bodied, goes down very smooth. Moderate carbonation. Clean finish. Rediculously drinkable.

Overall-I have a bad track record with Porters. I don't like them for some reason, I consider them watered down stouts. I've been drinking this beer for not too long and i'm starting at the 1/3 full glass. Beautiful lacing left, and just delightful. This is a world class beer. So easy to drink, tasty and refreshing. I was going to give 4 of the beers out of the 6 pack to one of my friends who loves Porters, but I'm definitely only giving him one now.

SWMeyer4141, Jun 03, 2011
Photo of matttttYCE
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle with an enjoy by date of 9/12/11 poured into my Deschutes snifter. Heard good things about this, excited for the review. Thanks Andrew for another very nice extra!

Appearance - Somewhat aggressive pour gives off a nice 1 1/2 finger head with a nice light tan color and some smaller creamier looking bubbles. Color is almost black but you can see some dark brown and deep dark ruby hues when held up to the light. Looks quite nice and leaves a bit of lace.

Smell - I'm getting mostly those typical porter aromas of roasted malts, coffee, and some chocolate with hints of smoke and vanilla but it seems one of the nicer porters I've smelled. Indeed intriguing and leaves me smelling again and again. I don't get much hops in the nose.

Taste - Taste is pretty much like the smell but I'm getting some caramel and dark fruit along with the roasted barley and coffee notes with what seems like that characteristic dryer taste of a porter. Maybe some hops in there, but I couldn't tell you which hop flavors exactly. They're more there to just balance this one out. Also getting that sort of classic porter bite or bitter aspect and finish, but it's not like a lot of other porters. It's more balanced/not strong and I don't know, just something great balanced and drinkable about this porter is about the only other thing I can say.

Mouthfeel - At first sip I had to go right to the mouthfeel because this is pretty thin. Not extremely so, but seems thinner than most porters around the same ABV that I can remember. I don't think the thin feel detracts from this brew, though. If anything it adds to the drinkability. It's got a medium level of carbonation (which helps this to not be too light) and a medium body. Finish is dryer but sweet and a bit biting like I said, but very nice. Lingers for a while to remind you to take another sip, but fades mostly before you can put your mouth to the glass again.

Overall - I'd say this is a very solid Porter overall. Actually one of my favorite of those I've tried so far, especially in that it's very drinkable and not overbearing, with just enough flavor and porter-ness to woo you. I could actually see myself drinking multiples of these in a session if I was just in the mood for something dark/roasty/complex, without the heavy chewy oomph of a stout or double/imperial stout. Very nice indeed. 4.0 out of 5.0.

matttttYCE, Jun 01, 2011
Photo of birderbeerer
4.1/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rich, chocolatey brown with a thick and tan, three-finger head. Slowly, steadily receding lacing.

Very full bodied and sweet aroma. Chocolate, caramel, and toffee. Very full and complex scent.

Taste is a bit sweeter than the aroma lets on. The chocolate, caramel, and toffee are there with a nice edge from hops and carbonation. And good dryness in the middle. Finish is a bit like chocolate syrup.

A solid beer. I bet I'd appreciate the second one more.

birderbeerer, Jun 01, 2011
Photo of dubinsky
4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Received as an extra in a trade with 321Jeff. Poured from 12oz bottle into a Crate and Barrel Snifter.

A - Pours solid black with brownish highlights. A foamy two finger mocha color head was a result of my pour and it quickly folded, leaving behind a nice wall of lace and a small island of foam in the middle of the glass.

S - Smells of rich chocolate malt, caramel, coffee and dark chocolate. I do pick up some hop presence as well.

T - Chocolate up front gives way to a mix of coffee and roasted malt in the back. The finish is a mix of chocolate sweetness and dark roasted malts and coffee.

M - Fairly heavy body and solid flavors with moderate carbonation. I love the creamy texture of this beer as well as the nice bittersweet finish.

O - This porter deserves all the hype it gets. Its a very good example of an American porter. The flavors are spot, the mouthfeel is amazing and its very drinkable. Thanks Jeff!

dubinsky, May 30, 2011
Photo of SylviaFaye
3.98/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ruby red highlights ring the dark, opaque body capped by a quickly-fading toffee-colored head.

The nose is a mix of freshly ground coffee and chocolate-covered cherries.

This beer has a smooth, medium mouthfeel paired with a coffee front and a peppery, barley finish. The background hints of cherry and fig.

Overall: This is a pretty good porter, but I've had better, and it is far from my favorite from Great Lakes. Still, it is worth sampling and is refreshing on a hot day.

SylviaFaye, May 28, 2011
Photo of Eriktheipaman
4.38/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pretty solid black even when held to a light with a tan head.

The smell is right on with the roasted coffee and a clean prickle from the hops and carbonation.

The taste is of mostly roast and coffee with not much on the chocolate side.

This beer tastes veryyy similar to my favorite the Black Butte. A great beer and glad to know some people on the midwest have a comparable Porter!

Eriktheipaman, May 28, 2011
Photo of avaccani
4.7/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a deep deep brown with a nice 2 finger tan head. Laced the whole way down the glass.

S - Hints of coffee, chocolate and some roasted barley. Smells inviting.

T - Getting some caramel tones with some chocolate upfront. Then the bittersweet roasted barley shines. Perfect balance. One of the best porters I ever had.

M - Nothing wrong with the carbonation. Has a velvety texture. Very smooth and full-bodied. I am impresed.

O - Awesome beer. I have no complaints. One of my top 5 favorites. Definatly worth a shot.

avaccani, May 28, 2011
Photo of Marty30
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Freshness date 10-1-11.Poured into A Founders snifter at fridge temp.

A. Body is black with a slight redish brown hue.A one finger kakhi colored head recedes quickly.Not much lacing.Very well carbonated.

S. Big milk chocolate notes come first to me,followed by coffee and roasted malt,with a slight bit of smokeyness.

T. Taste is spot on with the smell.Chocolate and coffee along with the roasted malts pretty much sum up the taste.Balenced with a good amount of hops. Very rich flavor.

M. Nice very carbonated medium mouth,carbonation stings the pallet and I take a sip.Medium thickness but feels light on the tongue.

Overall one awesome American Porter.One of the best out there in my opinion.Everybody should try this beer atleast once.

Marty30, May 27, 2011
Photo of bdo894
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured a dark brown, chocolate color. Nice coffee colored head, about an inch.
Smelled earthy but clean. Chocolate, graham cracker, coffee notes.
Tasted really bold coffee flavor up the wazoo, also chocolate with just a touch of hops. Chocolate lingers on the tongue.
Great smooth mouthfeel. Clean finish.
An amazing amazing beer. Even though I align myself with IPA's as a beer standard I would definitely get this again just for the sheer flavor.

bdo894, May 26, 2011
Photo of OldIronLungs
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to omgshesaboy for two of these!

Tossed into a nonic pint glass with a friendly pour - a dark brown, almost burgundy. Two fingers of puffy head quickly sinks like her namesake ship, leaving behind a rocky coast of lacing on the glass.

A whiff and - hello, roast. Light earthy hops. Burnt vanilla? Yeah, burnt vanilla. My nose, NOT YOURS.

A sip is full, with a smooth mineral body; carbonation slowly builds on the tongue. Warm but thin enough to be refreshing. Roast really hits in the middle, some bitter chocolate and coffee grain; A great acidic tangy bitterness sticks to your mouth through the finish.

This is a super drinkable porter. Tops. Should make a pit-stop in Cleveland sometime to try it on tap.

OldIronLungs, May 21, 2011
Photo of MattyG85
4.55/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams pint glass.

Appearance: Dark brown and amber red. Looks like cola. Has a big tan foam head with great retention and good lacing.

Smell: Sweet dark roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, and grassy hops. Hints of vanilla and fruits. Also has a lightly smoked character.

Taste: A sweet and tasty mix of roasted malts and coffee are followed by chocolate and light earthy hop bitterness. Hints of vanilla.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and carbonation. Very creamy and smooth.

Overall: A very good brew. One of the best American porters out there.

MattyG85, May 20, 2011
Photo of elgiacomo
3.95/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, unknown date. Big thanks to Adam for hooking me up with a 6-pack from his trip to Ohio. Served at cellar temperature.

Pours dark brown with red highlights and a two finger foamy active light brown head that leaves some clumpy lacing and holds a wispy cap.

Aroma is roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, some smoke, burnt toast, a touch of dark fruit and maybe a little bit of grassy or herbal hops. Good to very good strength.

Flavor is more roasted malts, some coffee and a bit of chocolate, smoky, toasty, fair sweetness and a touch of bitterness from the hops on the finish. Minimal alcohol.

Mouthfeel is on the thin side of medium, medium to high carbonation.

A very good Porter but not quite as robust as the Founders or Smuttynose offerings. I’ve been wanting to try this for years and glad to finally get a hold of some.

elgiacomo, May 20, 2011
Photo of titosupertramp
4.03/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark brown, cola color with three fingers of tan head. When it recedes into the beer, it leaves behind a really nice film and lots of lacing.

S: Roasted and sweet. Roasted barley, bitter chocolate, coffee and maybe a little smoke. The coffee smells seems to be more pronounced out of the bottle than on tap.

T: Bitter chocolate, coffee, roasted barley...the hop flavors are barely present at the end. Nice, mild citrus. Roasted flavors are more pronounced as it warms.

M: Good carbonation, medium body. Slides through the mouth.

O: Extremely drinkable beer. Overall, I liked this beer on tap a little better than out of the bottle.

titosupertramp, May 20, 2011
Photo of Bennettrox
4.13/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks ScreamForMe for this one!

A - Dark as night black with a creamy tan head. Lacing was really something else, almost crystallized as it went down.

S - Dark Chocolate, coffee, a little caramel, roasted malts.

T - Follows the nose but with a punch of flavor. Heavy chocolate/coffee based, caramel sweetness, and a burnt toasty taste to end on.

M - Damn is this drinkable. Medium bodied and carbonation - feels great in the mouth.

O - Wish I had many more of these porters. Excellent example of an American Porter.

Bennettrox, May 18, 2011
Photo of weller1js
3.9/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

appearance: pours a heavy brown, dark yet with a dark red transparancy when held to light, well carbonated with bubbly and creamy foam, consistency indicates a slight thickness that sticks to the lacing.

smell: smoky malts with, bittersweet undetones, hints of vanilla bean also are present.

taste: a step above medium-bodied, malts are smoky and consistent throughout, bittersweet notes of vanilla and coffee that blend with the bitterness of the hops, lasting through the finish.

drinkability: above-average porter, consistent in taste and body, abv is adequate, and the underlying flavors complement rather than overpower, very drinkable.

weller1js, May 18, 2011
Photo of azdback
3.75/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my Surly pint glass. Hyper carbonation!! This filled the glass completely with foam. I let it sit a few and carefully poured the rest of the bottle. Deep, dark brown with light caramel or brown sugar highlights. Head is very active and tan colored. Very creamy and whipped cream in texture. Lace is sticking and probably will to the end.

Smell is of dark roasted malt. A bit of chocolate with some coffee coming through. There is even a bit of vanilla in there. Also maybe the sugar of molasses is there. Quite nice!

The taste is quite a bit different. It's kind of a malt puzzle. There are lots of things going on but I need to put them together in my mind. It's sweet, but almost in a citrus-y way. The roasted flavors are there but they are interrupted by the weird out of place taste of orange rind. The late flavors are of tart fruit.

The mouth is par for the style. A bit watery and thin. Carbonation is fine and it, for the style, stays to end of the swallow.

Overall I am a bit confused by this one. I have been told by many that this is the holy grail of Porters, but I have to disagree. It is a good porter but not at all a great Porter. Thanks to xanok for the extra.

azdback, May 17, 2011
Photo of xanok
3.9/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Deep brown with some reddishness. Big tan head on this one. Lacing doesn't last too long. Quite the lovely looking beer.

S-Chocolatey and nuttiness are the main attributes here. Undertones of sweeter malts and caramel.

T-Very smooth roasted malts start here and linger throughout. Any sweetness from chocolate is more background noise than anything.

M-Pretty smooth overall. Carbonation was a bit high.

D-Above average porter but didn't blow me away like I was expecting. I was really psyched for this one. Maybe I need to set my standards a bit lower. For the price, this beer is a steal, but this is nowhere near as good as say....Smuttynose Robust Porter.

xanok, May 17, 2011
Photo of ThirstyBird
4.13/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours deep rich brown with some reddish highlights. One inch light brown head falls slowly. Minor lacing. Smells toasty, Chocolate, some coffee. Taste is Similar to nose. Chocolate, coffee, toasty a bit of caramel sweetness. A bit of bitterness on back end. mouthfeel is nice. Medium body, medium carbonation with nice level of activity and smoothness. Overall a real nice brew.

ThirstyBird, May 15, 2011
Photo of mater
5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Back in October this was the first non Sam Adams craft beer I tried.

12oz bottle poured into a Stone imperial pint glass.

A-Very dark brown, pretty much black with some ruby highlights. Had a nice two finger tan head with lacing till the end.

S-Roasty malts, coffee, milk chocolate. Smells really tasty.

T-This just taste delicious. It has more of a creamy chocolate taste at first, with the coffee following, also a little bit of hops come in that I didn't really smell.

M-Really smooth and creamy with a medium body.

O-My favorite porter(might be my favorite beer). At 5.8% abv many can be consumed. I like everything about this beer.

mater, May 14, 2011
Photo of spitInTheOcean
4.95/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

the beer pours as black as night, with a pleasant tan head that laces the glass.

the smell is beautiful. rich malty aroma with strong roasted notes of chocolate and coffee

for me the beer never comes of as sweet. its just varying shades of bitter. first the bitterness of the roasted barley with a subtle coffee flavor(a well roasted coffee like french mind you, not some weak-ass medium roast), then followed by the bitterness of the hop, and a dry finish. no discernible hop flavor here.

for me the real beauty in this beer is how powerfully it smells of malt and then, when sipped, the taste of the malts just fills the palate. to quote a chef i once knew, "it's just nice."

so why the 4.5? the dryness just seems a little much.

spitInTheOcean, May 14, 2011
Photo of AmericanGothic
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Peace Tree pint.

A: Deep brown color with hints of copper. Two fingers of pale tan head with good retention and nice lace.

S: Roasted malts and chocolate. Faint vinous tinge. Not bad, but a little tame.

T: Roasted malts continue with light pepper and unsweetened chocolate. Pepper intensifies on the finish, joined by a little cinnamon and bitter coffee. After a few sips, some sweetness emerges, joined by a little vanilla and a shot of whipped cream-- possibly lactose? All the flavors are well balanced, though a bit understated. Taste continues to evolve as the beer warms, with each part taking a turn on center stage. Faint citrus joins the chocolate. Also a whiff of smoke.

M: Not too heavy, very smooth. Am picking up lactose in the feel as well, but it doesn't overtake things, just lends interest.

O: A delicious porter. A lot of interest in the flavor, just wish that the aromas could keep up with it. Without a doubt, I will buy it again.

AmericanGothic, May 12, 2011
Photo of ludachris
4.08/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

If the deep chestnut brown highlights weren't able to be seen when held up to the light, I would have thought the body was ink black. A small cream coloured head forms on top but doesn't have much sticking power. A standard looking porter.

Ah, all the things I look for are in the nose and in plentiful supply. Roasted malts with a smokey edge, fresh coffee grounds and a nuttiness that runs through. Cocoa powder and dark chocolate give it a pleasant sweetness.

Finely roasted malts waste no time at making there way across the palate. A very smooth transition is made from the roasty side to semi-sweet baker's chocolate. There's a creamy nuttiness that sits in the back and continues into the finish. The finish is dry, slightly roasty with a pleasant coffee ground bitterness.

The balance and transitioning of flavours is flawless. The feel leans more towards being medium bodied with some crisp carbonation in the finish.

A well crafted, flavourful, and perfectly balanced porter. I have never really got in to this style, nor have I had many interpretations of it. This explains why my mark is lower than the average. I would love to revisit this in a year or so when I've had a chance to have had more American porters. For now, however, it's quite satisfying.

ludachris, May 12, 2011
Photo of orangesol
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at the Brewhouse Grille into a standard pint glass.

A - Pours plain old black, with ruby red highlights, with a small half finger tall mocha head leaving light lacing down the glass.

S - Smells of rich chocolate malt, caramel, coffee with creamer, and some dark chocolate. Solid nose but nothing too mind blowing.

T - Plenty of rich chocolate up front slowly giving way to a mix of coffee and roasted malt. The finish is a mix of chocolate sweetness and dark roast, lingering for a short time. I really like this one a lot.

M - Heavy body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Creamy feel with plenty of lingering sweet roast in the finish. It was a tiny bit on the watery side.

O - This is a solid example of an American porter. The flavors are spot on and it is easy to consume. I just wish more breweries would brew porters just like this one.

orangesol, May 12, 2011
Photo of ForkAndSpoonOp
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

When I first created my profile here and picked American Porter as my favored style of beer, I didn't realize that the list I was magically transported to wasn't ordered by rating. I just clicked on the ones with the most reviews, assuming they were the best ones. Lucky for me, you guys have good taste. We'll call this one a happy accident.

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours dark dark dark brown, nearly opaque. More than two fingers of tan head, But I can't be sure how much more, since it was on my kitchen counter. It clung on to the bitter fucking end.

Aroma is roasty as all get-out. Got a bit of caramel and a lot of coffee. Maybe there's even some vanilla in there? I'm slowly improving with this stuff.

Took a sip, and it was like drinking black coffee from Jesus' nipple. I honestly can't even tell if the bitterness is hops or roast, but it rules so hard. That was definitely vanilla I was smelling, and I got more and more chocolate with every sip. Shit, I don't even drink my coffee black, and I love this.

A creamy and satisfying texture. Not so thick that I feel like I ate a loaf of bread, but a nice firm handshake. This lacing WILL. NOT. DISSIPATE. It's 20 minutes later, I'm two-thirds done, and there's still a film over the entire surface of the glass. Ye gods, man.

A tremendously good porter. So glad I can get a hold of these fairly easily. Bought a six-pack, so I can drink a couple, age a couple and see how that works, and maybe use a couple as extras on trades when I'm finally a grown-up member of this site.

ForkAndSpoonOp, May 11, 2011
Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.38/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this bottle stored in the fridge and let it sit on the counter for 30 minutes before pouring into a tulip shaped snifter style beer glass. The beer poured extremely dark reddish brown with a perfect two-finger head of chunky foam.

The nose offered faint tones of coffee beans and chocolate. The taste is wonderful. Rich chocolatey malty sweetness, then a nice earthy, woody flavor and a nice dry finish. This beer is a perfect example of a classic American porter.

deadonhisfeet, May 09, 2011
Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 5,258 ratings.