Dismiss Notice
Get 12 monthly issues of BeerAdvocate magazine and save $5 when you select "auto-renew."

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join our email list →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.

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: 6,201
Avg: 4.26
pDev: 17.37%
Wants: 602
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: 6,201
Photo of Zonk
4.31/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a very dark brown allowing only a bit of light through it. Thick creamy tan head.

Roasty caramelish aromas. Definitely get cocoa and a bit of coffee.

On the palate lots of cocoa, a bit of burnt sugar (think roasted marshmellow), and some coffee.

Medium mouthfeel. Remains crisp, not too thick.

 305 characters

Photo of jmasher85
3.71/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A perfectly good porter and a regular at the local bar I used to frequent in DC. Nothing mindblowing here, but better than most flagship, tap-standard porters out there. Nice balance - not too sweet or bitter, and no flavors that try to blast out at you, which is nice.

 271 characters

Photo of FrancisM12
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Dark pour, but not black. Head is OK. Only avg thing about this beer. Chocolatey, creamy, coffee taste with nice hops in there. Smells just like it taste. Crisp feel. Everything you would want in a porter. I'm a big fan.

 220 characters

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

Velvety, chocolaty, rich and delicious. Also very satisfying on the mouth, full and creamy. I was surprised, though, that it wasn't prettier. Decent lacing, but not a great head or a particularly dark color, even on tap. Still, a delicious beer I'd have again and again.

 273 characters

Photo of Brian_L-2056
3.56/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not really a big porter fan but I thought I should at least try and expand my horizons. Pours a nice dark red/chocolate brown color. Little to no carbonation with thin creamy caramel color head. Taste immediately like coffee and toffee with a milder coffee finish. Lacing is very good. Overall, I think this is a good solid brew for anyone whom enjoys porters.

 365 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark brownish but not quite black under a solid one-inch thick tan head which slowly fades to a thin cap and leaves spots of lace. Aromas of roasted malt and flavors of dark chocolate. Well balanced and smooth finish.

 225 characters

Photo of schoolboy
4.12/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I have probably had this porter several hundred times. Time to rate it, but critically, because I've been thinking for a while that our local favorites at great lakes need to look at doing a v2 of some of these venerable brews.

Its dark and has a great head and nice small bubbles. The aroma is clean, roastyand malty.

The taste is a great balance of roast, sweet malts, and a bit of hops. Very drinkable and refreshing for an American Porter. The aftertaste lingers perfectly. It is a great Porter but ....

I would like to see the raising of the Edmund Fitzgerald. A slightly bigger version. I loved Alberta Clipper, with its fruity overtones. A new version of this, like the Stone 2.0 versions, is due (and a new label does not count).

 741 characters

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

Poured into a "Nonic" pint glass with a deep reddish-brown hue and a thick 3/4" head that left nice lacing on the glass.Coffee & chocolate in the aroma. Smoky, chocolate, vanilla, coffee notes in flavor. Creamy, firm mouth feel with just the right amount of carbonation and a slightly dry finish. One of the best porters I have tried! I think I'll pour the next one into a tulip glass to really let it breathe.

 411 characters

Photo of PhillyJay1701
4.95/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Poured into a pub-style pint glass.

Look: Deep brown color with light-robbing qualities; tan head that tastes as good as it looks.

Smell: cocoa, vanilla, smoky coffee notes, a sweetness that I can't quite place... exquisitely smelling beer.

Taste: I'm not sure I can adequately convey how awesome this tastes. There is a smoky coffee flavor pervading throughout. Choco-vanilla and some dark fruit notes (dates?) are also present. The coffee flavor gives it a bitterness that rounds out the swallow and leaves you with a pleasant smoky aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: low fizziness and a creamy, somewhat heavy feel, almost stout-like.

Just an intense, beautiful drinking experience. Honestly.

Link to my YouTube review of this beer:

 781 characters

Photo of Suds
4.26/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown, with a full tan head.....it has a roasty, coffee and dark chocolate aroma. Lots of dark malt. The taste is bitter, roasty, and intense. Full in body and very satisfying.

 184 characters

Photo of MUTINY
3.97/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a tulip.

A: Pours a deep dark brown/amber with 1/2" tan head that recedes pretty quickly. Retention is pretty good. Lacing is not really present.

S: Cocoa & vanilla jump out of the glass. Almost some pitted fruit/dark berry undertones. Brown sugar. Smells great.

T: Following the nose this is a bit of a disappointment. Milk chocolate & raspberry are the two components that seem to dominate the palate. A skootch of hop-bitterness toward the finish. Not as complex as I'd hoped.

M: Lowish carb & perfectly, silkily creamy feel. Just heavy enough on the palate to remind you that you're drinking a porter.

O: There are high notes & there are average notes. Nothing about this brew is sub-par.

 729 characters

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

Great beer. Nothing like the shipwreck it is named after. :-) It pours very nice with a good head. The taste is just a tiny bit bitter, but doesn't ruin the experience. It's so smooth!

 190 characters

Photo of Gear54
4.19/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From a bottle into a pint glass

Beer is pitch black with 1/2 finger of thin kaki head with little retention.

Smell is coffee, coco, and roasted malts. Classic porter aroma

Taste follows smell exactly! Again very classic porter flavor profile. Roasted malts and coco sweetness followed by coffee and black licorice.

Overall this is a craft beer classic and should be enjoyed by every beer enthusiast at least once.

 419 characters

Photo of SaltofOH
3.68/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed 2-16-15. Threshold glass. BB 5-18-15.

Appearance: Extremely dark with ruby highlights at the edges - light barely gets through. 1 finger tan head. Rocky, with very nice lacing.

Aroma: Very earthy/roasty; "dirty" smell (in a good way). A little duller than usual.

Taste: Slightly tart, dry arrival. Clean, slightly sweet, earthy, roasty mid-palate. Damp leaves. Bitter, roasty finish.

Mouthfeel: Good weight without being heavy. Solid carbonation. Not slick.

Overall: A real winner. I will buy this every winter, without fail, because it is consistently excellent.

 588 characters

Photo of mozart4898
4.59/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

L - 12 oz bottle, poured to pint glass. 1 1/2 finger of slightly off white head that slowly dwindles to a very persistent foamy ring . Near black appearance but when held to light shows beautiful clarity - dark brown with a dark red tint. Looks awesome.
S - Coffee, unsweetened cocoa. A hint of spice. Robust. Rich aroma.
T - Rich malt, roasty character that stays with you after each sip. Bittersweet chocolate/cocoa is the primary flavor. Perhaps the slightest hint of spicy hop character comes through as well, along with an equally slight hint of alcohol. Amazing perfect combination of flavors.
F - For me perhaps the only place I'd want a little more - wish this was just the slightest bit "chewier." Not thin and watery by any means but I'd like just a little more body. Carbonation spot on.
O - I'm still relatively new to rating beers (although several of those I've rated are beers I've had a number of times). Still when actually breaking it down and analyzing what I'm tasting, it seems I can still be surprised by familiar beers. This is one of those - I've always liked this beer but never quite realized how good it really is. I will probably never give a 5 in any category just to leave room for something unexpected so for me this beer makes a very close run at "perfection." Amazing job on this one GLBC.

*** As a chef, one of my "signature dishes" is a coffee rubbed, porter braised short rib. Guess what beer is the secret ingredient? ***

 1,475 characters

Photo of Jonoesh5
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Chocolate brown body with minimal khaki head. A sweet, smokey nose similar to tobacco. Very pleasant. Tastes of sweet tobacco, toasty malts, and bitter hops. Bitter notes prevail, and tobacco lingers in the aftertaste, but no flavor is pronounced. Mouthfeel is dryish and lightly carbonated. Overall, a very sessionable porter with an accessible flavor profile. I wish there was more of a statement from this brew, as nothing makes this beer excellent, but definitely well-crafted and enjoyable.

 495 characters

Photo of Cnote_crafty_1
4.56/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter
sipped out of a Sam Adams curvey taster glass, ABV says %6 on the bottle and on the website, IBU are 37 as listed on the website as well.

Appearance: It is black with a reddish brown tint when holding it up to the light. There was a 2 inch. head that dissapated to a small ring fairly quickly.
Nose: It has a decent bit of smells going on here. Mainly coffee, chocolate, malty smells here.
Taste: Sweetness, dark malt, chocolate, coffee, also got a slight nutty taste. It is pretty standard dark beer. I think it is a good porter, but nothing jumps out at me that makes this stand out among other porters/stouts. The sweetness is nice because I like a good sweet porter.
Moulth: Not much carbonation, pretty light(maybe not compared to an ale), drinkable
I would say a light body for a porter/stout.
Overall: I think I would have it again given that it is a good, solid, robust porter. I wouldn't really seek it out right away because it is pretty standard stuff.

 1,015 characters

Photo of ctylinebeer
4.1/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz. Bottle poured into a tapered pint glass

Strong coffee notes on the nose. Coffee on the palate with chocolate at the end. Not much texture to it. Pretty strong beer.

 173 characters

Photo of taverncast
3.97/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

An exceptional porter - one of the favorites among the ones I've tried.

Color: Deep amber black, with reddish copper head
Nose: Dark coffee, vegetative (green pepper?), earthy / soil, caramel
Taste: Vanilla, coffee, milk chocolate, malt, caramelized sugar, toffee, tootsie roll, light metallic / aluminum tinge, mild saltiness, tobacco
Finish: Dark chocolate, tobacco
Mouthfeel: Rich, creamy - almost milky smooth

 417 characters

Photo of Jeffrey-Pulver
3.98/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Great porter! Not as good as say Stone or Nevada but a good one indeed. Malts, coffee, chocolate, and some hops took over this beer. Nice smooth but carbonated feel. Overall a great porter.

 189 characters

Photo of pat61
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours brilliant ruby brown under a creamy light brown head that grips the inside of the glass. Big malt aromas with hints of chocolate but no harsh or burnt aromas. The palate follows the nose - creamy snooth light chocolate flavors, well balanced with a light hop accent on the finish.

 286 characters

Photo of Taybeh
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a single into a Yeti snifter (tasted side-by-side with Founders', Odell's, and Deschutes' porters)

A: black/brown and a khaki/linen 1 finger head
S: (best among all four tasted), faint smokiness, roasty and bittersweet but not very chocolatey (compared to the others), then finally a little fruity/herbal hoppiness
T: follows the nose, aggressive, a little burnt coffee bean... a lot going on here and nice integration
M: fairly chewy and substantial, medium carbonation, smooth but a little aggressive

Overall, I've enjoyed this one many times on its own, so it was interesting to taste against others that also seem like they're at the top of the class. With the Deschutes, this was the hoppiest, but EF has a more fruity and herbal twist which integrates into the roasted dark malts better, and has a more substantial mouthful. This one has the best nose, but it wasn't quite as rich and smooth and luxurious as the Founders in taste or mouthful...indeed, in comparison, I felt like it had a bit too much going on. Still, very very enjoyable.

 1,057 characters

Photo of Albianfire
4.46/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: dark but near opaque. Two finger tan head.

Aroma: chocolate, light roasted notes, some husky/woody notes that I like, hints of fruit but not much, hints of black licorice but not strong like star anise. It's like being in an old wooden shed (or perhaps a wheelhouse!) sets the mood for me.

Taste: roasted malt, some metallic taste is in there but not bothersome to me. Husky grain/woody character (makes the beer for me). Some lingering bitterness but not much. Just enough to make me go back for the next sip.

Mouthfeel: light to medium mouthfeel. It does border watery but, running it between my teeth makes it creamy. Would like a bit more body.

Overall: Currently my favorite porter but I can't get it where I am in Texas (yet!). I got this sample on a trip to Virginia. I can drink several of these. This is a fine porter. It says, i'm a porter so don't look for a stout. I appreciate the brewery for not trying too kick it up a notch. It rests well where it is and tells its own story. Nice job Great Lakes Brewing!

 1,039 characters

Photo of drunkenmess
3.71/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours light with a minimal off white head. Little lacing. Smells almost metallic but with a light fruit and nutty hint to it. Taste is better than smell, sweet yet alil bitterness. I like. Hints of light coffee and sweetness. Lingering after taste of the same. Good beer. Always enjoy a new porter

 297 characters

Photo of tillmac62
4.03/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

BBD 7/14/15. Pours a beautiful deep dark ruby that approaches black. Outstanding head volume and retention, world class lacing.

Rich nose of dark chocolate over a rich caramel malt base with a touch of roast.

Light medium body with a smooth texture that lacks creaminess. Above normal carbonation with a nice burst of effervescence in the middle and a prickly finish.

The flavor profile is less intense than expected, a bit complex and very well balanced. It begins with a slight baker's chocolate flavor that flows into a mild herbal bitterness in the middle. The richness of the nose never expresses itself. Roast appears in the middle - finish transition. Caramel never really becomes significant. The finish is a slow fade of roast and herbal hops.

 763 characters

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