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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.

4,943 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,943
Reviews: 1,838
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 9.86%
Wants: 462
Gots: 366 | FT: 19
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
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,943 | Reviews: 1,838 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brianlg


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

Have had this in bottles and on tap at the brewery. It pours a very dark brown, almost black color with a nice creamy tan head. Beautiful looking beer. The smell is also amazing, coffee and chocolate. The aroma is not too strong, just perfect. On first taste, it is of a medium thickness and tastes just like the smell. It is delicious! The aftertaste is strong of coffee. You can also taste some hop bitterness. This is an incredible beer! I love Great Lakes, and this is one of their best. Drinkability is high, but I couldn't have too many of these in one night. Do yourself a favor, and enjoy one of these!

Serving type: on-tap

03-22-2009 19:51:09 | More by brianlg
Photo of wheatyweiss


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

Poured into an imperial nonic for a nice amount of head space.

Pours a dark cola, deep brown color. Decent head fades to a nice covering cap that leaves sticky lacing.

Aroma is dark chocolate and cocoa powder. Dry bakers chocolate and a light smoke. Deep aromas of coffee and burnt malt.

Flavor is burnt malt, deeply roasted and well boiled. A tannic tartness comes through right before the hop flavor creeps up, which is present enough to balance the sweetness of the grain bill in this brew. Next, the chocolate and coffee begins it's performance. Finishes smokey and slightly dry from the hops.

Mouthfeel is medium and lush. Not too thin, not too chewy.

Very nicely attenuated beer, this is a fine example of a Robust Porter.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2009 01:28:59 | More by wheatyweiss
Photo of tctruffin


4.58/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle a couple of weeks past the "best by" date poured into a British pint glass.

Very dark, almost black with ruby highlights and a good sized light tan head. The aroma is amazing; I could enjoy the aroma all night. Dark coffee and chocolate with a hint of cherry. I'm reminded of a walnut fudge brownie.

Medium-heavy body is creamy smooth like thick chocolate milk. The sweet cocoa is balanced by a touch of bright bitterness that could be hops or could be roast. In any case, the sip finished clean and leaves you wanting another.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2009 04:07:55 | More by tctruffin
Photo of spokeydonkey

New York

4.53/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this in a bomber from our local pub. Poured at home into a 12 oz ommegang chalice.

A - Nearly black and very slightly transparent with a thin off-white head.

S - Coffee and toffee notes in the smell. Slightly smoky.

T - Malt sweetness up front. Smooth coffee/smoky notes with hints of caramel. A very slight bitter bite at the back end. A slight hint of alcohol heat in the back of the throat.

M - Heavy and rich mouthfeel that lingers on the tongue.

D - Exceptionally drinkable and balanced. Smooth, rich, and complex enough to remain interesting.

Serving type: on-tap

03-18-2009 01:40:22 | More by spokeydonkey
Photo of mirish72


4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Recieved this as gift, thanks Lindsay.

I had high expectations for this beer and I was certainly not disappointed.

The beer pours black, little to no head. The smell is chocolate and malty at once. The taste matches the smell, but there is a bit of sweetness that I wasn't expecting.

Overall this is a delicious porter. It is very drinkable, I just wish you could find it in MA.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2009 02:13:32 | More by mirish72
Photo of davexisxrabid


4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Received this as a freebie in a trade with Pamola. Thanks!!

Poured into my Sam Adams sensory glass - looked almost like Pepsi, but without the crazy carbonation. Dark brown almost black with a one and a quarter inch biege frothy head. Good lacing on the glass during the drinking period.

Aroma of bakers chocolate, and lightly roasted malts.

Taste of dark chocolate, almonds, a bit smokey and roasted malt flavor providing a nice bittering effect.

Flavor sticks around on the palate, nice and smokey. Medium-full bodied with light carbonation lets the flavor hang around without making it thin.

Excellent drinkability. An excellent porter with exceptional flavor, not too stong on the abv so its easy to enjoy a couple, and it doesnt wreck your palate. Looking forward to having a couple more of these!!

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2009 15:45:58 | More by davexisxrabid
Photo of Philabeerphia


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

Thank you drgonzo3705, you mad effing bastard.
12oz bottle poured into a tulip. Deep dark shades of chocolate and rust; a wild throw of tawny lace that has made a home on the side of my glass. I dig it.

Smells of roasted coffee beans, ripe dark fruit, peanut butter & fish oil. I've said it before - believe it or not, this is a good thing. A very good thing. More subtle hints of french bread, cider, caramel apples, celery and cheese. I s'pose this qualifies as a 12 course bouquet. Again, I dig it.

The first sip hits my tongue - salty oysterlettes sit on my lips. Cafamel, coffee open up big time in the middle. Bitter chocolate swallows me whole at the end. The kicker is the echo of piney hop bitterness that hangs in my throat for minutes. gorgeous.

A hearty mouthfeel, more than enough body for a porter. And how easy it went down. A great beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2009 00:33:54 | More by Philabeerphia
Photo of bbothen


4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into Sam Adams high tech glass from a 12 oz bottle.

Looks cola like brown with a small bubbly 1 finger deep tan colored head.

As a good porter should, roasty, chocolate, chocolate, sweet.

Chocolate, bitter toastiness, coffee, sweet malted milk, hoppiness. Yummy.

Medium to full, perfect carbonation, smooth, creamy, rich, great.

I could drink these all night. Tasty stuff right here. Someone send me more.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2009 01:17:04 | More by bbothen
Photo of armock

New York

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

A - Poured a black color with a tan head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is of roasted malt chocolate coffee scents

T - Very good taste like the smell chocolate and coffee

M - This beer has a thinner body with medium carbonation to it

D - This is a very good beer that I really enjoyed and could drink a number of thes in one sitting worth finding to try

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2009 19:07:20 | More by armock
Photo of dfillius


4.45/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed in a pint
This was the first beer I had from Great Lakes, now I'm reviewing it a year and a half later after an absence from their area of distribution.
A: Moderate pour yields 1.5 fingers of tan head with great retention. Clear, dark brown liquid that is almost black and opaque. A shade of red around the bottom edge shows.
S: Cocoa and coffee, modest hopping.
T: Rich cocoa, earthy, coffee grounds, peat, creamy sweetness.
M: Dry and bitter, smooth and silky.
D: High. This is a great porter and my favorite from Great Lakes so far.

Serving type: bottle

03-10-2009 01:47:55 | More by dfillius
Photo of tosshin


4.15/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a : A touch of light passes through showing a clear dark red. About .5 inch of head that dissipated quickly leaving very little lacing.
s : Chocolate and coffee are the dominating aromas. A hint of cherry is also present.
t : Mmm, that's really good. Coffee and a bitter hoppiness come through most dominate. The chocolate characteristic comes there with a bit of swirling. Also, there is a bit of a warm alcohol that makes this beer finish really nicely.
m : Nicely balanced. Carbonation and density are spot on. The beer leaves a coating in your mouth, but it tastes good so I don't mind.
d : Not a huge porter fan, but I could definately spend my night drinking this beer.

I have grown to really enjoy this brewery out of Cleveland. I have yet to find a poor beer from them. Here I was thinking that I would have a hard time finding quality beer in Erie, PA. Not so, not so.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2009 23:09:19 | More by tosshin
Photo of Lepley


5/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

From a variety twelve pack from Giant Eagle. I think they accidentally put six of these in the case and I can't complain.

A: Pours blackish-brown with two fingers of brown head, nice lacing but little retention.
S: Sweet, roastiness, coffee, smokey.
T: Coffee, roasty, smokey, sweet, fruity, bitter, chocolate.
M: Smoot, creamy.
D: This is one of my favorite beers, ever. Porters don't get much better than this.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2009 04:10:57 | More by Lepley
Photo of EatsTacos

Yukon (Canada)

4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a dark brown with amber hues, good head and some decent lacing on a pint glass

Aroma has a good amount of coffee and chocolate notes with a background hoppiness

Taste is not overly smokey or sweet, but is rather quite bitter and coffee-like. There are hints of fruitiness as well, cherries and raspberries. This is so far the best American porter I've had and among the best porters I've had.

Again mouthfeel is spot on for a porter, medium to light bodied with a pretty pronounced, sharp carbonation. This adds to the drinkability for me a lot.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2009 20:42:08 | More by EatsTacos
Photo of raoulduke37


4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass, just after the freshness date. Black with reddish hues near the bottom and sides, with a cream colored head that retains well, but not too much lacing. Smell is great - chocolate, toffee, caramel, with mild phenolic background. Taste is hoppy up front, but then warms up to a bitter/coffee background, and definitely some cream on the way down. Someone before described this as being very "balanced." Indeed it is. This is a great brew all around, especially if one needs a break from RIS's, as someone mentioned before also. With the low ABV, this is most definitely sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2009 03:29:05 | More by raoulduke37
Photo of DrewOSU


3.85/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark brown to a chestnut color, ½ khaki head with a medium amount of fluffy sponge on the top. Decent amount of soapy like lacing on pour. A white spider web lacing down the glass upon completion.

S: Hints of chocolate, coffee and molasses. I do not get a lot from the nose. I tried warming it up a little, but again, the smells didn't overwhelm me.

M/T: Light to a watery, medium body. A good hit of hop bitterness on the tongue on a clean pallet, only to be calmed by smooth roasted malts and a good amount of carbonation. Small amount of coffee and chocolate in the back of my mouth after swallow. The beer finishes light and pretty clean. Not a huge beer, none of the flavors will come overwhelm you in anyway, however the flavors are well blended. I think "blended" is a good word to describe this beer.

D: This beer is lighter than I expected it to be. Not a huge beer, but big enough to be a good sipper. Pretty good for someone who is looking from a break from a big RIS, but doesn't want a lager.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2009 02:01:21 | More by DrewOSU
Photo of Brew33


4.88/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've had this numerous times on draft and in bottles. It is wonderful both ways.

Great beer all the way around. Wonderful taste and body. Amazing drinkability considering the body and huge flavors. A staple at my house, good anytime. Don't hesitate. Best American Porter I've ever had. Outstanding.

Serving type: on-tap

03-02-2009 18:34:17 | More by Brew33
Photo of williamherbert

New York

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

The appearance is a deep, rich reddish brown. Light needs to push hard to get through. Two fingers of large puffy light brown/tan head.

The smell is sweet and bitter. Cherry and cocoa/mocha. Bitter coffee beans. Dark chcolate, some raisin and prunes. Lots of strong, dry cocoa.

The taste is sweeter on the palate, but with a bitter swallow. First sip is sweet stone fruits like raisin, grape and dates. A hint of plum. Sweeter than the average porter. Some dark cherry.

The feel is thick and creamy, almost like chocolate milk. It is hella good, even if a tad sweeter than normal.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2009 02:51:21 | More by williamherbert
Photo of saradad


4.2/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Okay, this is the last review of Great Lakes mixed case brews, and I saved my favorite for last, Edmund Fitzgerald Porter. Also happens to be a nostalgic little song from my youth as the 8-track tape containing this song was the first "album" I ever purchased, but I digress. The beer pours a nice deep, not quite opaque brown color with a nice light tan head that sticks around the sides of my glass quite nicely. There is no visible carbonation. The smell is of bittersweet chocolate covered cherries and toasty burnt toffee with hints of dark toast thrown in. There's almost no hops aroma evident. The taste mimics the scent with a very slight balance of lightly citrusy hops in the dry finish along with a touch of fading burnt chocolate with a slight alcohol presence. The feel is somewhat thinner than expected perhaps solidly in the medium range? This is a nicely drinkable beer, however, nothing overwhelming, nicely balanced and very tasty.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2009 19:32:51 | More by saradad
Photo of gotweid


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

From the bottle into a pint glass. Very dark, but still brownish. Big, chinky, thick head and thick lacing. Very attractive. Aroma of roasted malts, slightly smokey with a trace of hops. Very well balanced taste between the slightly bitter hops, roasted malt and almost chocolate sensation. Only slightly bitter so as to offset the cooked grains/malt. Medium bodied but very rich in flavor. Medium carbonation at best. Easy to drink and actually somewhat smooth. Enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

02-22-2009 20:04:57 | More by gotweid
Photo of jkrich


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

12 oz. bottle with a stamped drink by date on label. It has an image of the ill-fated ship Edmund Fitzgerald and a blurb about the ship on the side.

Poured a nearly black, opaque color with a fleeting tan head; very little lacing. When held up to the light, there are hints of deep ruby red slivers.

The aroma was of tangy sweetness with a molasses like quality. I could almost smell hints of dark chocolate.

A very refreshing taste of sweet malt and chocolate flavors initially attacks the tongue with a lingering semi-sweet, coffee flavor on the tongue. The hops keep this from becoming overpowering or cloying. Overall, a very refreshing, somewhat light bodied interpretation of the style. Just the right amount of carbonation and medium bodied, keep this one interesting.

It has been several years since I have tried a porter (the last time was Sierra Nevada's interpretation which I also found highly drinkable). It is still winter, and this quaffable porter is the perfect ale.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2009 23:38:37 | More by jkrich
Photo of BacklitAvenger


4.45/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a six pack and brought it to a BYOB Thai restaurant. Ate spicy ba me jan ron and drank a bottle. I love porters, and this is right up there with the best.

Appearance - Darkest brown to black with mahogany highlights along the rim of the glass and at the bottom via refraction when held up to the light. A light tan head that rapidly vanishes. I tend to pour in a fashion that purposely reduces head, so this may not be representative. And no hating on me for pouring less head: it's how I like it and I dont give a shit how you drink beer, so you should in turn respect my tastes even if you think they are stupid and idiotic and sinful and blasphemous and so forth. Head lacing leaves residual traces on the walls of the glass.

Smell - I smell toffee or caramel and malts. It smells toasty. Can't smell the alcohol. There's definitely for me a raisen aroma, strange as it may sound. I don't really taste it that strongly in the beer itself, but aromatically it is present and accounted for.

Taste - Not much fruit here unlike say Flying Dog's Gonzo Porter. Or chocolate like Great Lakes Blackout Stout. Or the vicious hop profile of Three Floyds Black Sun. Rather there's a semi-sweet malt flavor accentuated by toasty notes, roasted coffee, and hints of smoke. Certainly less sweet than the above mentioned Gonzo porter. There's toastyness in the malts, with a caramel sort of flavor and a strong bitterness. It's more bittersweet from the roasted malt and resinously bitter from the hops, which offer a distinct snappy crisp finish. Mid drink there kicks in a strong roasted coffee/toasted chocolate sort of flavor, a real roasty toasty lovelyness that brings it to a clean finish along with the crisp finish of the aforementioned hops. Aftertaste present, but pleasant, so no resentment. The alcohol provides just a touch of warmth. The aftertaste itself consists of burnt flavors, in a pleasant way. The same flavor winds its way throughout the drinking process but only comes to the fore after the stronger flavors of hops and more substantial malts, likely chocolate, black, brown or crystal malts.

Mouthfeel - Crisp and yet recognizably a porter. Certainly there are thicker beers, but while this is crisp it is also full bodied and substantial in its own way. It is lower alcohol than some porters I have drank and that shows in the mouthfeel. There's less of a kick too it, more smooth. Perfect carbonation for this beer, not too much and not too little. The viscosity is highly detected, but it is pleasantly thick rather than sticky, sweet, or cloying.

Drinkability - I have on previous occasions finished off twelve of these babies in a row. They're that good, that drinkable. The alcohol is blended into the flavors so well that you can't really tell it's there in any unpleasant way. It's ABV is low enough that you can drink several without getting too far off your ass and it is neither too filling nor so watery that you don't notice it going down.

All in all I highly recommend this stuff. It's cheaper than comparable porters like the aforementioned Flying Dog Gonzo Porter, which is about the same price but comes in a four pack rather than a six. And while it usually matches Bell's price, Bell's porters can't really compete here.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2009 20:49:00 | More by BacklitAvenger
Photo of Bung


4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pretty dark brown with an off white head. Roast, coffee and chocolate aroma. Chocolate, coffee, slight blackberry flavors. More carbonation than some for a porter. Still almost creamy though. Also a little more of a hop bite, and finishes crisp and clean. Could drink a ton of this no problem. All in all a real good porter, would recommend.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2009 01:05:02 | More by Bung
Photo of erosier


4.85/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

L: Pours a deep black color with a medium sized and full bodied tan colored head that laces the glass nicely on the way down.
S: Smells of sweet malts, some roasted barley, and some chocolate malt is mainly what I pick up.
T: Tastes of sweet roasted barley, some coffee and chocolate flavors, then a nice slight hop finish.
M: Very smooth, warming, perfect carbonation.
D: Extremely drinkable beer, this is certainly a winner and one of my new favorite porters. The flavors are all mixed to perfection.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2009 11:48:23 | More by erosier
Photo of angelmonster


3.83/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice 2 finger chocolate head. Black in color. Head retention and lacing are great

Smells of roasted sweet malt, cant pick up much else

Taste is of sweet smoky chocolate malt, slight hops are detected in aftertaste

Beer has good amount of carbonation. Semi creamy head with a not too watery body.

Overall great porter. Way better than anchor, imo. Not filling at all, highly drinkable

Serving type: bottle

02-18-2009 08:21:41 | More by angelmonster
Photo of damienblack


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

Thanks to JohnTravolta21 for this bottle!

Pours dark chocolatey brown with little fanfare. Quickly dissipating cocoa colored head, leaves decent lacing around the glass. Smells nice and roasty, sweet yet dark malt and some chocolate on the nose.

Little bit of coffee up front, some toffee/butterscotch, but the main flavor carried is a grizzled cocoa flavor that just sits pleasantly on the palate. Hooray for chocolate burps! The dark roasted malts are just sweet enough to make for a very pleasant experience, but not so sweet as to be cloying and in the way. Slight hop kick at the end, but not much to that department. This is all about the chocolate. Overall pretty simple, a little thin without anything amazing happens. But it is a very easy drink, and the simplicity works in this case. Were this available to me, it would probably be a regular go-to beer. I wish we could get this here.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2009 04:55:29 | More by damienblack
Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 4,943 ratings.