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Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

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

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5,604 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,604
Reviews: 1,901
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 10.12%
Wants: 513
Gots: 649 | FT: 22
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-09-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,604 | Reviews: 1,901 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ZOXXO
4.08/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a standard pint glass

A - Deep dark brown with reddish fringe visible when held up to a light source. Poured a nice light tan two finger head which was slow to dissipate leaving a lasting splotched lacing.

S - Roasted malts faint grassy hop and dark fruit smell.

T - Nice balance. Hop flavor hits first but quickly melts down into the tongue as creamy rich coffee and chocolate flavors. Finishes with a light smokey sweetness.

M - Middle of the road in body and carbonation. Just enough texture to cause one to pause and reflect. Very good.

D - High drinkability for a style not defined as light or crisp.

Overall I found this more enjoyable than another acclaimed porter of the English variety, Samuel Smiths Taddy. It will take an exceptional brew to prevent this from becoming my benchmark for the style.

Photo of Kala1073
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a pint glass. The color is a deep brown with a nice reddish color when held to the light. A finger and a half of light brown head with some nice lacing. The smell is a nice malty flavor that peaks your interest. The taste is a nice roasted, smooth malt flavor with some slight chocolate milk flavor. A slight coffee flavor hides in the background and can be noticed after every sip of this wonderful porter. The feel of the beer is really smooth. It goes down with a little alcohol bite. It has a nice drinkable feel and goes down well.

Photo of cbutova
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Black all the way with a large light tan cap. Good head retention and a fine, spotty lace coat.

S- Calm roast malt as well as some caramel, good strength and indicator of what the beer will,taste like. Slight dark fruit/raisins.

T- Starts with dark fruit and earthy hops atop roast malt. Finishes with stronger, fantastic roast biscuit caramel malt. Reminds me of a cookie in a way, some cocoa hints.

MF- Light body with lower, but very smooth carbonation. Slight bitterness. Pretty much what I expect in a porter, not too heavy. Could be creamier I suppose.

DB- Smooth, easily gulped porter. Flavor is spot on for where I see this style at this point. Roast malt here is especially splendid.

Photo of BigMike
3.58/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best by date of 10-10-10

Pours a deep brown mohogany color with some ruby red around the edges. A fluffy tan head of about two fingers tops it off.
So the bottle description is pretty right on as far as the nose goes. Bittersweet chocolate, some smoke and a touch of coffee.
Taste is like the nose only lighter. Chocolate, coffee and I get some light blueberry notes in the background.
Mouthfeel is light and almost watery. I would like it if the carbonation level was a little smaller.
Pretty nice porter. I was expecting alot more from it after seeing it's high ranking and I was a little disappointed. Mouthfeel was to bubbly and thin and a little watery.

Photo of mash4077
4.22/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

A- Very dark brown, little bits of dark amber peeking through, with a pink-tinted light brown two finger head.

S- On first sniff it comes off as a tough brown ale, but the traditional porter scent comes on through. dark, roasted coffee and intense malts.

T- Very very mellow and smooth. A tiny bit nutty, definite chocolate and coffee tastes, as the label suggests. Malts get better as it warms, no hops flavors at all. Nice taste overall, but rather simple.

M- A bit watery for a porter, and the carbonation leaves a little to be desired.

D- Very drinkable, I wouldn't mind having a sixer over a relaxing night.

Photo of flagmantho
4.13/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Can't wait!

Appearance: nice dense brown-black color with a good ruby tinge when held up to the light. Head poured three fingers of thick tan foam, which seems to have pretty good retention. Quite nice.

Smell: big, rich roasty aromas; a fair bit of sweetness and some nice floral and earthy hops. Quite good.

Taste: rich coffee flavors with some fruit qualities up front. These remind me of hints of a Baltic porter, really; bitterness picks up toward the end as both the hops and the roast malts reassert themselves. Very good.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a lot of roaminess. Carbonation is spot-on for a porter like this. Despite a lack of creaminess, I rather like it.

Drinkabillity: tasty, and more than the sum of its parts. Very much enjoying this beer.

Photo of PantherLightning
4.75/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beer pours a nice and black. It is fairly opaque with a two finger mocha colored head. The head slowly diminishes and leaves a great lacing as you drink. It smells lite toasted malt and chocolate, and has a very subtle scent.

The mouthfeel of this beer is extremely silky and smooth but with hints of carbonation. The taste is amazingly tame for having such a complex range. I get hints of chocolate and coffee mixed with toasted malt. The finish is very clean and slightly smokey.

This is the most drinkable and delicious porter that I have ever had. It has so much complex flavor that it is always a staple of mine, and it is easy to throw more than 2 or 3 of these back in a sitting.

This beer is a great example of a beer that is delicate and subtle in its tastes and doesn't rely on punching you in the face with massive amounts of flavors. Not that doing that is bad, it's just nice to have a balanced

Photo of KAP1356
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle with a best by date of August 10, 2010 into a Dogfish Head pint glass...

A - Pours a dark brown with very dark ruby highlights at certain points where the light hits the glass. A slight .5 finger eggshell white color head forms and slowly dissipates to a nice eggshell white lacing.

S - Lots of roasted malts up front. Some coffee notes come through and mixes quite well with the roatsed malts. Smells like a great porter should.Some slight vanilla notes and smokey notes are there as well.

T - Roatsed malts and some sweetness up front. Roasted coffee, chocolate and vanilla also hit the middle of the palate. There is a slight smoke quality to the beer which adds nicely to the other flavors that are present. There also seems to be come slight citrus flavors present as well...perhaps some hope presence?

M - Smooth and creamy. There is a slight carbonation bite to it on the back end of the sip. Lighter to medium bodied and a nice dryness present as well.

D - Extremely drinkable. This is a very well balanced beer and the low ABV makes it extremely easy to get through several bottles.

Photo of Chaney
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I poured into a 3 Floyds pint glass from a 12oz. bottle. That's good karma already!

A: Inch thick head upon first pour. The frothy, creamy consistency stayed on the beer throughout the session. Not totally pitch black, but the darkest brown you could imagine. Beautiful beer!

S: Mild roasty coffee with a prominent hazelnut quality. Sweet, without being too.

T: Perfectly balanced - almost more of a stout, due to the lack of BBQ-like smoke flavor that I usually associate with this style. I detected a flash of fig-like fruitiness on the finish. Ahhh...

M: The creamy thickness of the beer cannot be bragged about enough. ABV is virtually undetectable.

D: ABV is reasonable and the ingredients perfectly balanced. I think I'll have another!

Overall: This is one of those rare beers that defines the style. Awesome and then some!

Photo of Tone
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear, dark brown/amber color. 5/4 inch head of a tan color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of roasted malt, sweet malt, alcohol, vanilla, dark citrus, and slight hops. Fits the style of an American Porter. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with an average carbonation level. Strong bitterness and sweetness qualities are well balanced. Tastes of roasted malt, slight coffee, hops, slight dark citrus, slight alcohol, and slight vanilla. Overall, good appearance, aroma, body, blend, and complexity.

Photo of ralree
4.68/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Very dark brown, tan head, 2 fingers, big bubbles, some fizz on the side underneath detracts from the look - makes it look like coke. Great retention and lacing though.

S: Smokey, hoppy, brown sugar, rich malt, chocolate. Wonderful.

T: Super-smokey - reminds me of Rauchbier. If you like this, try Schlenkerla. Extremely toasty malt dominates the flavor, but it's backed up by some nice hop notes and a bitter chocolatey bite. Lighter aftertaste than expected which makes it a joy to drink. A little less smoke and more hops would make it better I think.

M: Oily, wet texture. Good carbonation after all. Thick and a bit chewy. Medium-heavy body. A tad bit astringent.

D: Goes down wonderfully for the style. I couldn't ask for a more drinkable smoked porter.

Photo of Naugros
4.3/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep brown in color with a thin head that dies and leaves behind a tan crown and a slick of off-white. The crown sticks to the sides for a second and then slides back into the swamp.

Sweet, sweet roast delivering a complex bouquet of oak, earth and pepper to the nose. There's a very slight bitterness present that I can't figure out. Is it the roasted malts or is there actually a hops presence? Whatever it is, it's making for a nice balance.

The bitterness seems to be from the malts and if there are hops, then I can't pick them out. The roast leaves a dryness around the back of your mouth that's not so much a bitterness but a burnt sensation, like the aftertaste from eating burnt toast. This flavor is not really in the initial quaff, but in the wash. The initial sensation is sweet and brings roasted malts, oak and earth...almost as if someone had removed all the alcohol from bourbon...but who would commit such a felony?

The dryness is a really nice experience, continuing the pleasant ride that the smooth, medium body delivers. The taste, the body, the wash and the low ABV all make for a beer that you want to come back to. My nonic drained rather effortlessly. Once again, the hype about Great Lakes' beers seems well-deserved.

Photo of tone77
3.5/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a black color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is dominated by roasted malts. Taste is of coffee, malts, maybe a hint of chocolate, slight bitterness. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and has good drinkability. Overall this is a good quality brew.

Photo of tlazaroff
4.03/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Drank from a pint glass.

A: Pours a dark, dark, brown, but not totally black, you can see some ruby highlights around the edge of the glass. Tan head about 1-finger. Lacing is plentiful and really looks nice.

S: I get a mixture of roast and coffee on the nose, like chocolate covered coffee beans almost.

T: It has that nice roasty taste that I have come to love from porters. More coffee on the finish than anything else, and you can taste some of the bitterness on the mid-palate.

M: This beer has more carbonation than I would expect from a porter, but it's not overbearing. It feels good in the mouth, coats your palate well, and lingers for quite some time.

D: Very nice, I could easily drink a few of these in a row. The alcohol isn't necessarily hidden, you can defiantly feel it, it's subtle.

Photo of Tomdee74
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

glad to pick this up on a trip to hershey park with wife and daughter.. stopped at brass rail and met ffejherb and foofaa and thanx for all the talk fellas.. got a victory at sea by ballast point on draft and the guy sisco there was awesome he sold me a 4 pack of KBS!! definitely a very worthy place to check out if you can!

Okay... now on to the beer review!!

A - Okay first off, I wish I bought more of these.. these pour a pretty dark black color.. can't see thru the glass.. about an inch of head.. leaves behind nice lacing..

S - gotta give it up here.. has that roasty coffee chocolate smell that i love in a porter.. reminds me of a smuttynose robust porter!

T - Damn they nailed it here pretty good! has this sweet but also roasty taste here.. i'm impressed.. i wish i got more.. once again i have to compare it to a smutty robust because it reminds me of that here.. just a great flavor with the chocolate, roasty quality to it.. very good porter

M - great carbonation.. good thickness.. this beer has nice body to it!

D - Very drinkable... i wish i bought more of this as it's not something distributed to ct.. but glad i tried and would strongly encourage anyone to buy this...

Photo of king75
4.65/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very dark, no light is going to pass through this beer.

Has a smokey smell to it, kind of like the smell you get from a fireplace. Can smell trace amounts of chocolate.

Has a crisp smokey taste to it. I've never described a beer as smokey, but this one definitely has a smokey flavor to it, combined with the chocolate this is an amazing beer.

This beer goes down extremely smooth, leaves a slight bitter/numbing effect to the tongue.

Notes: I had an extremely high expectation for this porter and it surpassed every expectation I had. An extremely drinkable beer, very heavy so your not going to drink a lot of them at one time. A great dessert beer.

Photo of chickencoop
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I don't know if it's just a phase but i was really into porters is a wee lad, and then moved on, the sweetness was crushed by the west coast ipa invasion. But, on that note, this is some tasty stuff. I've had this for some time, but drinking it before the pull date, but just couldn't pull the trigger on a porter night, i'm glad i did. Deep dark pour, great nose with deep roasted malts. Taste was a nice coffee/ chocolate balance throughout to the finish. Very light mouthfeel, but very drinkable. Good stuff.

Photo of olmatty
4.18/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance- Deep brown hue with deep ruby if held up to light and a creamy one finger head with excellent retention.

Smell-Creamy and chocolaty with a slightly roasty malt character lurking in the background.

Taste- Very smooth creamy and chocolate flavor. Finish is roasty and quite pleasant.

Mouthfeel- Sticky and thick in the mouth , but the carbonation is approaching the brisk side so the thick body gets lifted and lightened a bit.

Drinkability- Smooth, fulfilling and tasty. Very drinkable.

I still recommend the Dick's Lava Rock Porter as my all time fave.

Photo of Mavajo
3.15/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours nearly black with garnett highlights. Moderate head and lacing.

Nose and taste are a bit mediocre in my opinion - roasted malt and a hint of chocolate. I couldn't detect much else. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with good carbonation.

All in all, I wasn't impressed. However, maybe it's just my inexperienced palate.

Photo of urwithdave
4.55/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to Captinredbeard for the extra. Poured into my Cigar City snifter.

A- Very dark brown in color, not quite black, but it's almost there. There are ruby highlights when held to the light. There is two fingers worth of a tan head the retains nicely. My glass is coated with splattered lacing.

A- The main aroma is coffee and a bitter chocolate. There are hints of caramel or molasses.

T- A nicely balanced blend of coffee and chocolate throughout. Not overly bitter, but not to sweet either. They nailed it here. Some dark fruit and a touch of caramel is in play as well. There is a faint hop presence on the back end. I am really impressed by this porter, one of my favorites.

M- My only knock....it was a little thinner than I would have liked. Everything else was spot on! Moderate carbonation with a lingering semi bitter finish.

D- Perfect, but dangerous for the mere fact that because it is perfect I could drink this all day long.

Photo of Axic10
4.8/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Why, oh why did I wait so long to review you. An old, often forgotten friend from my days living in Cleveland. 12oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Dark brownish/black with two fingers of foamy mocha foam.

Smell: Roasted coffee, chocolate, roasted malt. A great aroma.

Taste: Coffee, roasted/burnt malt, sweet chocolate. Very nice dark chocoately/bitter aftertaste. Such good flavor at a lower abv. Kudos Great Lakes.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and smooth.

Drinkability: Hands down my favorite porter and for a long time, it was my favorite beer. This is a world class porter and I will be putting it back on regular rotation.

Photo of Macky20
4.13/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Porter is not my choice beer in the summer, but this one was surprisingly tasty.

a- poured from 12 oz bottle into dogfish pint glass. good looking pour with two finger caramel colored head, leaving a splotchy lacing behind.

s- not overpowering, hints of sweet malt and coffee.

t- the prominent taste is a smokey coffee taste, and maybe a dark chocolate finish that hits the back of your tongue before you expect it.

m- could have been a bit "heavier" in the mouth, but it wasn't bad. it almost doesn't cling to your mouth like most premium porters i've had in the past.

d- not sure that i could drink more than one of these in a sitting, but it's not this beer, i think it's porters in general.

Photo of stimulus
4.22/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle.

A: Pours a dark brown, with ruby red peeking through the corners, and a tan head.
S: Belgian chocolate and coffee.
T: Sweet Belgian chocolate followed by coffee and roasted malt.
M: Medium bodied and well carbonated.
D: Wow. After having tried Founders offering as well, I don't know which is better, but a side to side tasting is probably in order.

Photo of shadow1961
4.1/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter pours a mere disk of creamy foam over a deep dark brew. The nose is pleasantly sweet with a definite note of liquorice. Up front the flavor is toasty dark malts, the barest note of fruit and the liquorice again, balanced with subdued herbal hops. Mouthfeel is light, crisp, and semidry. Altogether, a super drinkable brew- sure, it's not as asserive as a lot of American style Porters or as heavy and malty as the English- but everything about it encourges another sip.

Photo of yeahnatenelson
4.13/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance -- Pours a deep brown with two fingers of foamy beige head that is slow to disappear

Smell -- Roast malt, dark chocolate, char, molasses, and coffee. Overall: deep roast notes with faint sweetness.

Taste -- Flavor follows the nose moreover: plenty of deep roast flavors like bittersweet chocolate and coffee. Finish is bitter with char and coffee grounds.

Mouthfeel -- Medium in body with moderate fluffy carboation.

Drinkability -- I've been disappointed with Great Lakes before, but this one is quite good. a great, easy-drinking, (nearly) sessionable porter. If you're looking for big roast flavors without a high abv, you could do a lot worse than this.

Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 5,604 ratings.