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Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald PorterGreat Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,626 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4626
Reviews: 1824
rAvg: 4.26
pDev: 9.86%

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: 4,626 | Reviews: 1,824 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of sisuspeed

New Hampshire

3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Romulux for the bottle!

Poured into a Portsmouth tasting glass. A big, foamy, light-tan head rests on top of an essentially black body. Sticky patches of lacing left behind.

Earthy, well-roasted malts on the nose mixed with a bit of chocolate and some bread. Somewhat smokey with a metallic tinge, but the metallic notes seems to be fading. Smells pretty good, but it would be nice if it were a bit stronger.

Roasty, smoked dark malts wash across the tongue followed by some bitter hop and a touch of dark chocolate. Still some what metallic and thin. A little more bitter than I would like. Almost grainy.

Mouthfeel is fairly smooth, but seems a bit thin and over carbonated.

Drinkability is better than average, but not great. I'm not really sure why this beer gets so much love. Founders Porter blows this one out of the water as does Sierra Nevada's offering. Too bitter and thin with a faint (yet noticeable) metallic taste. Maybe this is just a bad bottle. If the second bottle I have is different I'll re-review. Not a bad beer by any means, but not all that great.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2010 02:25:18 | More by sisuspeed
Photo of xpdrinker


3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a glowing dark brown with thin khaki head that doesn't last, but leaves a nice lace. Surprisingly darker than their Blackout stout, though.

S - Some coffee, brown sugar and a minuscule amount of coffee. Slight touch of raisin.

T - Dark brown sugar, weak coffee, roasted almonds.

M - Light bodied, above average carbonation.

O - Only word that comes to mind is solid. Everyone should try it at least once.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2012 01:51:13 | More by xpdrinker
Photo of jtierney89

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

near black deep brown tan head. charcoal coffee and black chocolate on the nose.

burnt coffee flavor with some dark bitter chocolate and charcoal. creamy and chewy big body. herbal hop good bitterness and balance. a good beer with simple flavors but I don't understand the super high ratings. I like it but not crazy about it.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2013 01:36:28 | More by jtierney89
Photo of redearth329


3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured around 60 degrees (F) into a chilled Weissen glass.

A - Two fingers of sticky tan head that hung around for a couple minutes, before settling into about a half-finger's worth with some lacing of the glass. Very dark brown, although the tiniest bit of light shines through when held up to a lamp, revealing clarity and a slight ruby tinge. No evident carbonation (besides the head).

S - roasty malt notes on the nose, but not very forward. I'm finding a weak nose to be a trend with the Great Lakes stuff.

T - Nice roasty malt character, with some hints of chocolate, black cherry, cola, and maybe a touch of coffee. Sweetness of a cola balanced with bitterness of dark chocolate or coffee. No hop presence.

M - a bit flabby. Medium to full bodied like whole milk, but I'm getting an aqueous impression (as though water was added). Little to no noticeable carbonation.

Very good, but the flavors seem a little disjoint and the mouthfeel is just ok. Not the most mind-expanding porter I've had lately.

Serving type: bottle

04-12-2014 23:54:42 | More by redearth329
Photo of Doodlesby


3.53/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from bottle into ommegang glass

A: medium darkness, an amber color towards the bottom of glass when light hits just right. Light tan head that dissipates within a minute or two.

S: sweet smell of chocolate and toffee.

T: hint of bitterness, dark chocolate, coffee, and roasted malt.

M: medium body, creamy and smooth finish.

Overall: great porter that's not too heavy and could probably drink a couple and not feel so full. Very well balanced.

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2011 23:17:40 | More by Doodlesby
Photo of dorianmarley


3.53/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The color is a deep black, with a creamy head.

The nose is nutty, with maple syrup.

The taste is nutty, with plenty of cocoa bean and coffee.

The mouthfeel is what sets it apart from many porters: it has a lot of carbonation and is not particularly smooth. It gives off a fizzy feeling, like a fountain soda.

It is a refreshing porter, but it did not provide enough smoothness to compliment the rich flavors.

Serving type: on-tap

09-18-2011 03:04:52 | More by dorianmarley
Photo of cadizkyguy


3.53/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This might be the best thing to come out of Cleveland, Ohio. Lucky to find an ultra fresh 6 pack, with a best by date of June 9, 2013, at The Party Source in Bellevue, KY on New Year's Eve. I can never find this beer, fresh or otherwise. It doesn't stay on the shelves long enough to collect dust.

Having enjoyed it before, i'm going to review this now.

Great pour into my Samuel Adams Perfect Glass. Nice frothy head on top of a dark as cola body. The beer might have chilled too long, because the smell has a light roastiness to it -- not characteristic of a world class porter, as the scores on BA would indicate.

Taste... maybe it's too fresh, because this beer tastes kind of green. Mouthfeel is thin also.

In conclusion, this is a very nice beer, but hardly world class. My favorite porter is still Founders' Porter. Now that is world class.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2013 07:02:01 | More by cadizkyguy
Photo of cbeer88


3.55/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tasted blindly courtesy of Blind BIF #7.

Appearance: The liquid flows out of the bottle in a darkish brown shade, but amasses into the cup in a very dark brown bordering on black. Head is about a finger and a half of tan. Lacing is decent.

Smell: Coffee and roasted malts pummel the nose. If I strain I think I can smell some faint hops.

Taste: Very bitter - intense coffee flavor and again, the roasted malts. Notes of chocolate and licorice. This guy is really on the astringent side of bitter coffee.

Mouthfeel: A little thin, especially for the style. Adequate carb levels.

Drinkability: Moderate to low - I don't mind one, but that astringency in the coffee is a little much for multiples.

Overall: This is a decent beer, but it's nothing to write home about. Seems like a run of the mill porter.

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2012 02:35:26 | More by cbeer88
Photo of Westsidethreat


3.58/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Clean, slightly translucent porter. Soft beige head fell quickly now just remains as a patch memory and subtle ring around the glass.

S: Smells great! Coffee, bourbon, chocolate pudding, bit of oak.

T: Begins with a bit of slightly sour milk then transitions to a medium burnt coffee flavor. Almost a charred quality with burnt aspects, but very subtle. Ends with a touch of burnt butter. The flavors are all very subtle...

M: Bit thinner than I would have thought, but as the beer opens so does the body.

D: Not as complex as I had hoped. For the reviews, I expected more. Much better porters out there IMO.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2006 05:23:13 | More by Westsidethreat
Photo of Damian


3.58/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Drank from a 12 fl. oz. bottle

Thanks to my girlfriend Nari for bringing this one back from Ohio.

Poured a dark mahogany with caramel-colored highlights and a bubbly, light beige, one-finger head that slowly faded to a thick ring. Some spotty streaks of lacing cascaded down the sides of the glass.

Aroma was sweet and rich and consisted of strong notes of dark chocolate, coffee and roasted malts, along with hints of brown sugar, maple syrup and a general woodiness.

Taste was a mix of deep, dark flavors. Roasted malts, bitter espresso and a distinct nutty flavor came through strong along with sweet malts and some creaminess. A touch hoppy on the back end with a remarkably clean, dry finish. Well balanced. Initially, I did not detect any aftertaste, but later some pleasant, subtle coffee notes became apparent.

Mouthfeel was disappointingly thin, yet smooth.

This beer is a good example of the style, though not too exciting.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2007 04:21:51 | More by Damian
Photo of BigMike


3.58/5  rDev -16%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

08-22-2010 00:21:46 | More by BigMike
Photo of ChristianBlack

North Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark, with a frothy head and good retention.

Smoky, somewhat metallic nose. Coffee is very pronounced throughout.

Smooth, creamy. The mouthfeel really pretty good and finishes clean. Alcohol is well hidden.

Malty backbone, much like the nose. Somewhat watered down and I can't pick up much at first. Not overly complex with isn't necessarily a bad thing.

A good straightforward porter, although I'm not as impressed with it as others. The drinkibiliy is pretty good on this one and the balance is nice. Overall, a very solid beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2011 12:47:48 | More by ChristianBlack
Photo of Bucknutty24


3.58/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: This pours a solid black color with a tan colored head that fades kinda quick.

S: The smell is mostly malts,coffee and chocolate.

T: Real nice coffee and chocolate taste at first and a slight bitterness on the finish.

M: A creamy medium body feel.

O:I've not had many porters yet. This was part of a sampler pack and turned out to an excellent surprise. I will probably be drinking this agian soon.

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2011 02:00:46 | More by Bucknutty24
Photo of maximum12


3.6/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to beerisheaven for throwing this in as an extra to another fine trade, although he didn't include Demi Moore. A top 100 beer I haven't tried yet, with almost 1,000 reviews? Has to be good!

Black. Nice head, which I still fail to understand the appeal of, but it's there. Smells more like coffee than I expected.

Taste is full & robust for a regular ole' porter. The coffee is prominent, sharing time but not hogging the stage with the malts. Mouth on this might be it's strength, as the porter is the epitome of smooth, creamy, & easy-drinking.

Overall a very good beer. Happy to have tried it & impressed that an American Porter can stick in the BA Top 100 in this moment of big, bad, kick-ass brews. Salut!

Serving type: bottle

06-12-2009 03:13:30 | More by maximum12
Photo of JerseyKirk

New Jersey

3.6/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: very thin tan head. Cleared quickly. Black but light shines through brown on the top and bottom.

S: chocolate, dark chocolate, coffee and tobacco, prune, malt sweetness.

T: Chocolate, black patent, really roasty middle that clears to a clean finish. Slight molasses but definitely roasty coffee with some dark chocolate. No lingering bitterness. Very clean finish.

M: medium body and carbed appropriately.

O: didn't stand up to the hype. Just a roasty coffee porter that definitely uses black patent or other high roast malt to give it a burnt coffee flavor. Easy drinker but not a standout. Could prove useful for those that aren't used to bolder flavors.

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2012 20:13:22 | More by JerseyKirk
Photo of aracauna


3.63/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice, deep black color. Very dark. Good tan head that leaves good lacing on the glass. The aroma is a little mild, and you pick up citric hops over the rich malt aromas. The taste starts off rich, with a coffee-like (not as much as some others, but still there) and caramel/toffee mix of the malts. This is lightened up a bit by the ample hops. The beer is surprisingly light and drinkable despite the richness of the flavor. An easy drinking example of a porter that's basically a stout light.

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2002 18:25:22 | More by aracauna
Photo of fisherman34

Manitoba (Canada)

3.63/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very dark brown in colour with red highlights. Medium carbonation. Strong aromas of dark chocolate, cold dark roast coffee, and the slightest suggestion of earthy hops at the tail end. More chocolate and dark roast coffee in the mouth, with additional flavors of dried fruit, brown sugar, and a touch of lactic sourness. Good body and a lasting finish. Complex, but perhaps a little muddled at the end. Still a very good porter.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2006 17:13:06 | More by fisherman34
Photo of northernbrews


3.63/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a 12oz bottle from Merchant's in Dearborn. I've always walked by this highly rated porter...let's see if I should have picked this before now.

Appearance: This pours dark brown with slight reddish brown around the edges. The 1 inch tan head fades quickly to a thin layer on top. There is some nice lacing on my snifter.

Aroma: Starts with some roasted and slightly burnt tasting malts. Too much smoke/burnt flavor for me. This makes way too some slight coffee and dark chocolate notes. As this warms, the smokey malts become a little bit sweeter. I can see people liking this if they like smokey and heavy roast flavors...but I guess I'm not one of them.

Taste: The initial taste is sweet and roasted malts. The finish is a little bit of chocolate, but I wish this had some more flavors going on. It's pretty boring actually.

Mouthfeel: This is kind of thin, even for a porter. The smokey and roast malt flavors hang around for a bit.

Drinkability: There is too much smoke and heavy roast flavors going on with this for me to want more than one or two of these. Again, if these flavors suit your tastes, this could be a normal session beer.

Overall: I was expecting more from this beer, especially because of all the good beers I've had from Great Lakes over the years, and since this has won numerous medals. I guess there was a reason I've passed this up numerous times in the past....won't be picking this up anytime soon, but it's worth a try if you like the above flavors.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2007 10:33:54 | More by northernbrews
Photo of HuskyinPDX


3.63/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle Poured into my Bruery Snifter.

A - Pours a medium to dark brown with a dark tan head. Good retention and lacing left on the glass.

S - Chocolate, nuts, and malty.

T - Mild coffee and chocolate.

D - Low carbonation, smooth, but slightly bitter.

O - Decent Porter, but taste doesn't live up to the smell.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2011 01:16:11 | More by HuskyinPDX
Photo of maddogruss

New Jersey

3.65/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 12 ounce bottle into a glass mug.

A: Pours a dark black body with a silky, tan head with ok retention and nice lacing along the sides of the glass until the finish of the beer.

S: A nice, roasted, slightly malty smell.

T: A nice, roasted taste with a nice roasted aftertaste. Definitely a nice taste overall.

M: A smooth, silky mouthfeel that was very pleasant on the palette.

D: Very good drinkability. A nice, roasted taste that was complimented by a nice, smooth mouthfeel. A nice session beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2008 02:56:06 | More by maddogruss
Photo of JohnGalt1


3.65/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz received in trade from Wasatch.. I've had this brew a few times over the years.. but this is the first time I've ever sat down and took notes or reviewed it. Poured into my Sam Adams shaped glass.

3 finger light tan head drops leaving spotty lacing atop a very dark brown and very clear brew... even the highlites are dark brown.

Aroma is mainly chocolate and burnt sugar.. but in a good way.. smells thick..

Flavor is the same as the nose but with touches of coffee and some background hop bitterness that could easily be mistaken for dark grains. Plenty of malty sweetness to tie it all together with some lingering fruitiness and a touch of vanilla on the finish.

I remember the body being bigger and for that matter the hoppiness.. but I'm not complaining.. all and all.. a very nice porter.. I just wish I would have picked up a Black Butte tonight to try them side by side.

Thanks John..

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2008 08:59:03 | More by JohnGalt1
Photo of flexinwext


3.65/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I will start by saying porters are not one of my favorite types. However, this is a very muted and not overly coffee-flavored porter, so it suites my needs well. Dark brown blackish color. Smell of coffee and chocolate. Flavor is very good and drinkable, unlike many porters that overdo the coffee. The low ABV makes this a very good session porter. Not one for those who need big flavors.

Serving type: bottle

05-21-2009 00:19:51 | More by flexinwext
Photo of MaximalC


3.65/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark molasses color with a light tan head that is achievable with a moderate pour. Aroma is a blend of black coffee and bittersweet chocolate in similar measure. It tastes similar to its smell, though not quite as pleasing. The roasted coffee flavor overshadows the chocolate notes that I prefer, and both of those have a healthy dose of hops to compete with, which I find to be fairly high for a porter (though it does segway fairly seamlessly into the bitter coffee flavor). The last time I had this I thought the hop presence was way too unbalanced, though this serving has a lesser disparity than I remember. Carbonation is pretty lively for a porter, and a slightly sticky residue persists on the lips. This brew is flavorful to be sure, but it fails to take advantage of the aspects of porter that I most enjoy, leaving me ultimately a little disappointed. No disrespect intended, but I can't really justify the very high esteem in which this beer is held by many.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2012 02:46:14 | More by MaximalC
Photo of DocJitsu


3.65/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque very dark brown with glints of cola brown around the bottom edge when held to the light. Coffee and a bit of cocoa on the nose. Thicker consistency, but too much carbonation too quickly. Big coffee flavor. Some lactose, but not enough, in my opinion. The coffee flavor is nice, but the coffee acidity is barely tempered by the creaminess. The carbonation tends to overpower the lactose feel and flavor. It's ok. I was excited to get the chance to try it again. I'd had it several years ago. But, more recently, there's been quite a bit of hype about it. I don't feel it's lived up to it.

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2012 21:00:21 | More by DocJitsu
Photo of Jeffreysan


3.66/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours an extremely dark, almost pitch black color, with a half of a finger of off-white head that dissolved into a thin lacing of foam that almost, but not completely covered the top of the beer in wispy clouds.

Aroma: Roasted malt and coffee beans. Dark chocolate and slightly burnt caramel. Smoke.

Taste: Very roasty up front, almost to the point of being too bitter, but not quite. Smoke, dark chocolate, almost burnt dark bread, coffee and molasses also appear.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full. Chewy. There is a little carbonation, but not a lot. With an ABV of 5.8%, this beer has a surprising higher alcohol presence on the palate than I expected.

Overall: This is a very good porter, but not one of my favorites. While I like the very slightly-bitter forward flavors of the beer, I didn’t love it. I prefer my porters to have just a little less roasted, smoky bitterness to them. This beer is nicely crafted, it’s just not one of my favorites.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2013 00:15:39 | More by Jeffreysan
Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 4,626 ratings.