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Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

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Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald PorterGreat Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

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5,612 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,612
Reviews: 1,903
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 9.88%
Wants: 515
Gots: 654 | 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: 5,612 | Reviews: 1,903 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of olmatty
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%
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
3.16/5  rDev -25.6%
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
4.77/5  rDev +12.2%
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
4.15/5  rDev -2.4%
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
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
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
4.12/5  rDev -3.1%
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
4.12/5  rDev -3.1%
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.

Photo of oregonskibum
4.02/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter glass.

A: Color is a uniform dark brown. Pours with a thin 1/4 inch head that disappears quickly, leaving just a thin ring around the glass.

S: Lots of cocoa and dark chocolate aromas along with some faint roasted coffee bitterness.

T: Taste generally follows smell, although the chocolate flavors a little more subdued. By mid-taste, coffee and roasted malts are playing a larger role in the taste. Finish is slightly bitter with some hints of burnt coffee beans.

M: Medium to medium heavy mouth feel, moderate carbonation. Fairly smooth.

D: Very nice porter and easy to drink. Generally well balance, although I thought there was a touch too much bitterness come through from the coffee towards the end. Still, I had no problem drinking this one and would enjoy another if available.

Photo of BehindtheFinBrew
4.47/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From Great Lakes Sampler
BB: 10-31-10
12 oz to nonic pint

A: Pours deep black with shades of ruby. 3.5 finger mocha head that left beautiful ringed lace down the glass as it slowly receded.

S: Bittersweet chocolate and deep roasted malts with coffee with slight bready grain.

T: Follows nose. Too often porters are over bittered, but this one is nicely balanced with slight hop sweetness on finish. Roasted notes give way to rounder sweet malt and chocolate. Flavors are more pronounced as it warms

M: A little thin, I know porters aren't stouts but I like more feel. Low bodied.

D: Robust in flavor yet low bodied. Just as a porter should be. Overall a delicious beer and the best porter I've had.

Photo of matty
3.85/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black colored beer with a rapidly fading tan creamy head.Aroma is chocolate.Taste is chocolate malts,smoked malts,coffee and sweet cream.A very good beer that is flavorful and drinkable.Good from first to last sip.I would recommend and purchase again.

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

A nite cap bottle poured into a pint glass.

A- two fingers of tan head from a steady pour nice retention but does settle after a bit and leaves some sticky drippy lace. Very dark brown almost black in color.

S- robust dark roasted malts with some chocolate and coffee. A hint of char and vanilla.

T- again with the dark roasted malts and coffee. Chocolate play a less roll but the is a bit and it works well with the light sweetness. Long enjoyable roasted linger is left on the palate.

M- a tick less then medium in body and a nice mid level carb. Semi dry finish.

D- great porter, super flavorful and really easy to drink. Paired wonderfully with a nice bowl of chili.

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

We have all heard the song by Gordon Lightfoot; the one about the freighter Edmund Fitzgerald that was lost in the depths of Lake Superior. Apparently, the ship frequently made port in Cleveland. (one can also visit the sister ship, William Miller, that is open for tours and docked across from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.) But, I digress from the beer in hand.

The initial pour erupts in a violent vanilla froth that is slow to settle. The body is a deep ruby hue and completely impervious to light - much like the muddy bottom of Lake Superior, I suppose? The nose discerns a quick whiff of cocoa powder; the palate is flooded - much like the great ship - with roasted malt that provokes a surprisingly sweet and creamy finish.

Great Lakes is a brewery for whom I have established a high estimation. Now that it is available to us here in the East, this is a factor that will improve the beer drinking quality to all who know of it. Now, let us drink a toast to the brave souls who sleep within the rusted hulk of the Edmund Fitxgerald. Hit it Gordon....

Photo of Evocatus
4.4/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark coffee color with a mocha bubbly head that soon dies to about 2 mm. Aroma was there, a mix of roast, sweet mocha, and malts. Taste had a slight maltiness and sweet mocha/cocoa to it, overcome with a roast bitterness at the end. Excellent body, probably the best of all the porters i've had so far. Not too thin or too thick, a perfect balance. Not too strong in any category, so you could have one or two of these anytime.

Photo of silentjay
4.27/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a barely translucent dark brown with a mahogany tint with a thin, wispy creamed coffee colored head that settles to a quick film but leaves good lacing.

aroma of creamy mocha coffee with a good amount of vanilla. very sweet and roasty and a bit earthy. excellent smell.

taste follows, but expands a bit on the aroma. caramel, bitter and dark chocolate as well as sweet and creamy mocha coffee give way to a bit of roast and some underlying hop bitterness. a bit of fruitiness, roasted nuts, and some light molasses can also be detected. finishes with some cocoa powder and black coffee. very nice.

medium boded with medium carbonation. finishes a bit watery (the only minor flaw of this beer for me) with some drying cocoa powder after the swallow. would rather a bit more creamy mouthfeel, while this ends up almost in the realm of skim milk. Not a terrible detractor.

A great aroma and flavor make this drink very easily. Would like a bit more body to overall enhance the experience, but its a very easy-drinking porter.

I wish this was available in New England. A well crafted brew that shows not everything has to be bigger and bolder to be better.

Photo of Chico1985
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another beer sent by BrewerDan23. Awesome!

Pours very dark brown, only see through from highlights at the bottom. Small creamy tan head eventually turns to a ring and leaves some lacing.

Nice smell. Chocolate milk, coffee, roasted malt and some earthy hops.

Taste is great, perfect for the style. Dark chocolate, coffee with cream, roasted malt, a little bit of grassy and earthy hops. Awesome aftertaste. The balance is so well done.

Nice thickness for 5.8%, carbonation is good. Very drinkable, light and flavorful. I've had many porters that were too watery, or that were over the top. This avoids those pitfalls completely, a very stellar example of a porter done right.

Photo of mgbickel
4.43/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Perfect Pint glass. The pour yielded a tall, 2 ½ fingers of sandy colored foam. The head lasted forever and clung to the glass like crazy. The body is deep chestnut brown with amber edges when backlit.

Light coffee, roasted malts, dark chocolate and fire cooked peanuts are all present in the nose.

The flavor is right with the nose...deep and roasted up front, malts and caramel sweetness in the middle and a deep, coffee finish.

Medium mouth feel, semi oily with moderate to heavy carbonation.

Man...this is easily one of the easiest drinking, most flavorful porter on the market. The complexity and flavors borderlines on double stout levels...highly recommended and well worth any hype it receives.

Photo of kirkpjr
4.49/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a SA perfect pint.

A: Pours a very dark brown, almost black color with light barely coming through the bottom of the glass. Three full fingers of fluffy tannish cream head with spotted lacing.

S: Coffee, roasted malts, burnt chocolate, and some oats maybe. Excellent smelling porter.

T: Tastes almost exactly like it smells, with some smokiness and vanilla to it. Nice bitter coffee and roasted notes up front finished with a sweet finish.

M: Burnt and creamy feel. Medium in body and moderate carbonation.

D: Excellent beer. Very drinkable. Goes down easily despite the richness.

Photo of association330
4.23/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, "Enjoy by: 10/31/2010"

A - Pours almost pitch black, with a half-finger of toast-colored head. Nice spots of lace.

S - Slightly burnt black malts, sweetness, chocolate, coffee, faint dark fruit and lactic character.

T - Roasty black malt, swallow of modest hop note with lingering dark-roast coffee and dark chocolate bitterness.

M - Body on the full side of moderate. Moderately low carbonation.

D - Fantastic. Readily available nearby, and in my rotation. Hats off to Ohio, they actually did something right. ;-) :p

Photo of halo21
4.37/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: I poured the bottle of midnight ruby porter into my snifter, capped at the top by a creamy, thick tan and mocha head, that left a huge coating of lacing all the way down.

Smell: It is very rich smelling, of roasted malts and of coffee - both beans and roasted coffee, and a bit of espresso. There is also a little yeast notes in the background.

Taste: Smooth and strong roasted flavors of coffee beans and malts, all balanced with an ever so sweet and dry finish.

Mouthfeel: Higher medium bodied beer, with huge creaminess aided by awesome head retention and a drying finish on the end, making you want more.

Drinkability: Medium: This is a great cooler weather beer; as the months warm up, this one will be put on hold for rare occasions until fall. This is a heavy beer full of ingredients.

Notes: This is pretty much my go to American Porter. Great Lakes for the win.

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

Received this one as an extra in a somewhat recent trade. After hearing so much about Great Lakes over the years, this was my first opportunity to try one of their beers. Pours a nice mahogany color, with a pretty nice caramel colored head. Roasted malt, coffee, bitter cocoa and a somewhat dry finish.

Photo of scottyshades
4.92/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to Ryan011235 for this awesome extra in our trade

A: Pours pitch black with a khaki color head. Retention is decent, not great, but leaves sheets of foam along the glass.

S: Wow, awesomeness right here. Lots of roasty and toasty notes accompanied by milk-chocolate, bittersweet chocolate, lactose, and subtle dark fruit (raisin, plum). Also lots of coffee in the nose. The hops are light and subtle, but give a little pine.

T: Amazingly balanced and pretty complex. Bittersweet chocolate and the hops provide a nice bitterness to balance the lactose, milk-chocolate, and dark fruit. The coffee simply excels this to a whole new level. I am also getting some nuttiness (coconut or macadamia?).

MF/D: Carbonation is spot on, allowing the fullness of the body to come out. The finish is a mixture of coffee and bittersweet chocolate. This beer is amazingly drinkable, and I am having a hard time putting my glass down. At this pace, I'll finish this in about 15 minutes compared to my usual 30

Notes: I really can't think of any reasonable complaints or criticisms...Really awesome beer and extremely drinkable. I need to trade for this one in the near future. Thanks again Ryan!

Photo of EwaldEichstaett
3.7/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured into a pint glass, decent head and lacing. Very dark brown in color, not much light passes through this one.

S: Strong smells of roasted chocolate and coffee. The beer also smells quite creamy and sweet.

T: Tastes of sweet and bitter chocolate at the same time. there are deep roasted flavors and some nice hop bitterness presents itself at the end. However, there is something missing here... for some reason the flavors seem to hold back a bit too much. There is lots of flavor, but you seem to have to concentrate to taste it. I have had this beer several times and always had the same problem. The flavor would be a 5 if it was more upfront; I'm hate to say it, but the beer will be getting a 3.5 from me.

M/D: the mouthfeel is good, if not a bit on the light side. The drinkability is decent, but I would rather drink just one of these with a meal or desert and switch to something else.

Photo of StoneBrewFanatic
4.32/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours almost completely black into my pint glass with almost two fingers of head and nice lacing.

S - So amazing, smells of dark chocolate, coffee, cream and smoke.

T - Not too far off from the aroma, the taste is full of bittersweet chocolate, coffee, and smoke.

M - Medium body that lightly coats the mouth but doesn't overstay it's welcome.

D - I must admit this was my least favorite Great Lakes Brew when I lived in Cleveland and drank it regularly, but now that I don't get to enjoy it often I have gained a much deeper appreciation for it. It really is rather complex and super tasty, a beer everyone should enjoy at one time or another!

Photo of irishkyle21
4.77/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I've waited a long time (to long) to try this masterpiece. Dark brown almost black in color, a nice light brown head with some lacing left behind.

Smells of rich roasted malts, coffee and some bitter chocolate.

Tastes even better than it smells. This really is a wonderful porter. Bitter cocoa, coffee and roasted malts. Also has a nice sweetness to it. This is one highly drinkable beers, hard to put down and just sip on.

Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 5,612 ratings.