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Bobo's Robust Porter - Big Sky Brewing Company

Bobo's Robust PorterBobo's Robust Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

191 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 191
Reviews: 95
rAvg: 3.82
pDev: 10.99%

Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company visit their website
Montana, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
32 IBU

(Beer added by: loren01 on 09-05-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 191 | Reviews: 95 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of BuckeyeNation


3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Double chocolate fudge cake brown with no lightening at the edges. Three finger's worth of coffee milkshake colored (and textured) foam lie atop the beer... while barely broken blankets of lace stick to all available surfaces. I've seen some Imperial stouts that didn't look this dark and foreboding.

Bobo's looks robust and smells robust. The beer, that is, not the buffed-up chihuahua. I have no idea what he smells like. Loads of crystal, brown, black and roasted malt result in aromas of chocolate, coffee, caramel and vanilla. Nothing new, just the usuals done right.

Although it may not be as robust as expected, Bobo's Robust Porter is bigger than your average American porter. It's tastier too, thanks to all that malt. If it hasn't been added yet, the ABV is 6.2%, which allowed it to sneak in under the wire of this state's idiotic alcohol laws. Thanks Big Sky, keep sending us delicious beer. Love, BuckeyeNation.

Dark chocolate and vanilla-spiked coffee fight for dominance on the palate, although it's really more of a cooperative effort than a tussle. Dark caramel is still present as well. A moderate amount of hop flavor and bitterness, courtesy of East Kent Goldings and Challenger, keeps things nicely balanced.

When a brewery calls a porter 'Robust', I expect a little more full chewiness. That said, if we view this brew through the American porter lens, it's big enough. I still have to go with the lower of the two considered scores.

Bobo's Robust Porter is another good Big Sky beer. I often forget how good these guys are until I drink another one of their offerings. If you like porters and see Bobo on the shelves, don't hesitate to give him a home.

Serving type: bottle

04-28-2009 12:33:59 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of TMoney2591


4.1/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Gale Sayers shaker pint glass.

I think we've all known some dog that looks (and probably acts) exactly like Bobo... Anyway, this stuff pours a deep mahogany topped by a finger of bright tan foam. The nose comprises cocoa, coffee, light roasted malts, and a twinge of molasses. The taste brings in more of the same, with the roast coming through more strongly and the cocoa darkening a touch. There is a pronounced roastiness and, well, robustness present in this beer. The body is a stolid medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a sorta/kinda drying finish. Overall, a very nice strong porter, one that shows you can have some strong, robust flavor without resorting to high ABVs and overly-wacky adjunct additions. Good times.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2012 14:56:58 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of emerge077


3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle dated "050212" on the neck, also "limited release".

Jet black with dark brown edges, sturdy cap of creamy mocha stained foam. Head retention is good, and random arcs of lace stick to the glass.

Mild creamy coffee and dark chocolate notes in the aroma.

Some roasty char, and dry bitterness from the roast, nicely medium bodied and porterish. Lingering earthy roast and mellow coffee traces. Light to medium carbonation, smooth feel. Overall pretty nice, just about what you'd expect a good robust porter to be.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2012 00:11:36 | More by emerge077
Photo of russpowell


3.95/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had one the other night, but this actually tastes better on a fresh set of taste buds IMO...

Pours an effervescent ebony with a finger+ of brown/chestnut colored head. Zero head retention & lacing

S: Chocolate, coffee & iron

T: Coffee, dark chocolate, & iron up front. Charred grain, & dryness as this warms, plus some coffee. Finishes dry with more charred grain & coffee

MF: Creamy, smooth, & medium bodied

Drinks fairly easy, good, not great slant on the coffee styled porter....

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2010 05:29:35 | More by russpowell
Photo of Mora2000


3.75/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark brown to black color with a small tan head. The aroma has a ton of roasted malt and chocolate notes, with a hint of mint thrown in. The flavor is more of the same. I get a lot of chocolate malt, but what really stands out is the heavily roasted/burnt malt. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2012 03:44:26 | More by Mora2000
Photo of zeff80


3.55/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out an opaque, black color with a small, light brown head of foam. It left very little lacing.

S - It smelled of chocolate and roasty notes. Some mild floral notes.

T - It had a nice roasted malt flavor with some sweet chocolate. There was a touch of hoppy bitterness to add some balance.

M - It was crisp and smooth. A medium bodied ale with a dry, clean finish.

O - This is a nice robust porter. Another solid brew from Big Sky.

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2012 04:44:50 | More by zeff80
Photo of Gueuzedude


3.55/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at 1702; March 2010
This arrives from the tap looking pretty black and it is topped by a well browned, dark tan colored, half-finger thick head. The aroma has dusty notes of cocoa, instant coffee crystal like aromas, some molasses, a touch of licorice and even some earthy chicory like aromatics to it.

The flavor is actually pretty dry tasting from what I was expecting. There is an acidic edge to this beer that is contributed by the abundance of roasted malt used in this beer. The finish is a mix of expressive toasted whole grain notes, espresso, charcoal, and some charred grain husk notes. The second sip is a bit more balanced than the first, and is not quite as dominated with the roast grain flavors. The mouthfeel has some fullness to it, but it doesn't' quite balance the roast character. As this warms I notice some burnt vegetal notes that I really don't like, but sometimes find in overly roasted beers. Interesting flavors of licorice, earthy chicory, perhaps a touch of malty molasses are also brought out as this warms. There can be a subtle savoriness to the malt character at times too.

This is definitely a beer for those who like big, unbalanced roast character. I don't find it un-enjoyable, but with the notes I find as flaws, it isn't really my preference either.

Serving type: on-tap

03-20-2010 22:56:48 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of StonedTrippin


3.73/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours dark and clear, primarily coffee black, but with just a tiny hint of amber in there. decent white head but it fades in time. smell isnt quite as "robust" as the name suggests it might be. notes of dark roast coffee and semisweet cocoa. flavor is similar, with the roasty character of the malt taking center stage. still, its not robust in the way i had envisioned. this might be a better porter under a different name with a different set of expectations. feel was a touch on the thin side for me, but overall it was fine. medium body with average carbonation. drinkable and strong on the abv front. not a bad beer at all, but i dont think it lives all the way up to its name.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2012 23:35:53 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of JohnGalt1


4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz single picked up today at the COOP... Poured into my Delirium goblet.

2 finger dark tan head... The brew is dark dark brown... still pretty clear with brown/dark ruby highlites... very nice lacing.

Nose is pretty dominated by cocoa.. lite caramel and some cold brewed coffee... Nothing too out of this world, just well made.

Flavor mirrors the nose exactly with some mild fruitiness.. a bit of black cherry.. a bit of spicy hoppiness... very nice body and an abundant yet smooth carbonation..

I really liked this one.. Had a sampler or two at the GABF.. and remember wandering what the ABV was? If it was any higher or was any more "robust", I would hope for some kind of Imperial moniker.. instead, this is damn nice just the way it is... It also tastes very fresh right now which I am sure is helping my overall opinion.


Serving type: bottle

01-16-2010 07:01:17 | More by JohnGalt1
Photo of HopHead84


4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4



A: Black body with a substantial light brown head. Nice retention and lots of lacing.

S: Very roasty with black malts, earth, and a light burnt note. Chocolate is pronounced and it's accompanied by grain and a light coffee note. Caramel is faint.

T: Rich chocolate flavor with mellow roasted grains, a little caramel, and a dash of coffee. Upper low level of earthy bitterness. The finish is smooth with ample chocolate.

M: Upper medium body with upper medium carbonation.

Overall: A well done Robust Porter. Not a beer geek's wet dream of a style, but this checks all the boxes for the style and I really can't fault it.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2012 23:49:28 | More by HopHead84
Photo of superspak


4/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, best by 4/11/2012. Pours clear cery dark brown color with a nice 1-2 finger dense tan head with good retention that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Some nice spotty lacing on the glass. Aromas of big chocolate, caramel, roasted malt, light coffee, and herbal hops. Nice and well balanced aromas with good strength. Taste of big chocolate, coffee, roasted malt, caramel, and herbal hops. Fair amount of coffee bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of roasted malt, chocolate, coffee, caramel, and herbal hops on the finish for a bit. Very nice flavor balance. Medium carbonation and body; with a fairly creamy and smooth mouthfeel. Alcohol is well hidden with hardly any warming noticed. Very easy to drink as expected for 6.2%. Overall this is a damn nice and straightforward robust porter. Great flavor balance and very easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2012 05:59:46 | More by superspak
Photo of ZAP


4.5/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Dark brown/black....tan lace on top

S-dark roasted coffee and cream...bakers chocolate...caramel..

T-Pretty much the same as the aroma....coffee and cream...roasted malts....a hint of burnt malt....and now more of a milk chocolate flavor....caramel is more noticeable on the aroma but it is evident on the taste in a small way as well.

M-On the high side of medium bodied....not quite creamy texture but awful smooth...

D-Excellent robust porter (not to be confused with a Baltic Porter)...love the coffee and cream mixed with the chocolate and caramel....I'm impressed with everything about this beer....

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2009 05:10:34 | More by ZAP
Photo of scruffwhor


3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a black to dark brown color with an awesome brownie colored, two finger head. The aroma is strong roasted malts that give off light dark chocolate, coffee, and mocha aromas. Plus the mineraly dry water element is picked up in the aroma as well. The taste is almost like take a bite into a moist brownie fresh the oven, and washing it down with coffee mixed with chocolate milk. Good dry gypsum texture, but still moist and wet in the bacl of the tongue to make this beer feel almost gooey and heart warming. Not gooey in a viscous sense, but more of an internal feeling than what was felt on my palate. Pretty good to have a couple minus the abv. and strong flavor profile of this porter.

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2010 00:06:49 | More by scruffwhor
Photo of flagmantho


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

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: utterly non-translucent black with one finger of dark brown head. Robust porter, indeed; you might even call it stout.

Smell: very nice coffee aroma. One-dimensional, but a very well-executed dimension. There is also just a hint of roasted bitterness and alcohol, but these are way below the coffee.

Taste: bitter roasted malts without the charm of a lot of coffee or chocolate flavors. There is a nice hop bitterness as well; indeed, I'd say most of the sweetness is actually hop flavor, but most of it is buried under nearly-acrid roasted malt. Now, I like roasted malts, so this isn't necessarily all bad; however, the flavor lacks much nuance or subtlety.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a style-appropriate level of carbonation. This is a run-of-the-mill texture, but not bad.

Drinkability: it's a bit too roasty-acrid to be highly drinkable, but I could definitely see myself downing a few of these over some conversation and fried pub fare.

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2010 18:24:55 | More by flagmantho
Photo of LiquidAmber


4.08/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from 4/2010 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours an opaque black with a dark brown two finger head and heavy lacing. Aroma of dark malt, coffee and chocolate. Medium body and dark roasty malts with some pleasant smoky flavors. Tasty start and middle, tapers off at the finish. Nice dark, quite pleasant and enjoyable porter. I will buy again.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2012 23:37:37 | More by LiquidAmber
Photo of GClarkage


4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

10/28/06- Had on tap at the Big Sky Brewery in Missoula, MT while on vacation last year.

Presentation- From the tap poured into two sampler glasses. Also have had from the liter size bottles.

Appearance- 3/4 inch full dirty brown head. Dark brown, maybe and off black colored pour. Full length lacing sheets plaster the glass. Lovely sight.

Smell- Deep chocolate malt aroma with a dash of coffee. Sensing some mud pie action here.

Taste- Overbaked brownies and super dark chocolate. A bit of espresso bean as well. Not sugary. Needs something to tie it all together to be outstanding.

Mouthfeel- Lower carbonation level with a light creamy texture. Has a dry chocolate aftertaste.

Drinkability- This one is almost there. A bit more sweetness and a bit more "robust" flavor and this would be tremendous. I think technically this is a try at a baltic style porter. The abv is a secret according to the brewmaster, but gave hints that it was higher than a normal porter. Tastes around the 6.5-7% range to me. All in all a really good porter whatever the kind. Definite score again for Big Sky.

Serving type: on-tap

03-08-2007 21:54:41 | More by GClarkage
Photo of ADZA


3.35/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy from beermasons and pours a dark black hue which leaves a two finger coffee laced two finger head and sporadic lacing,the smell is cocoa nibs,dark chocolate,coffee and dark fruits,the mouthfeel is just over light bodied and sesionable but i was hoping for a little thicker with tastes of cocoa nibs,dark cherries,herbal hops,raisins,milky chocolate and finished just like a nice milky coffee and overall its nice but lacks in some departments cheers.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2012 08:59:03 | More by ADZA
Photo of Mitchster


3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

$1.79 for a 12oz bottle @ BevCo. Brewed with pale, crystal, chocolate, brown, black and roasted malts. Hopped with East Kent Goldings and Challenger. 6.2% ABV, 32 IBU's.

Pours out to a clear very dark brown, near black, forming a nice medium tan head with average retention and good lacing. Carbonation is moderate. The aroma is rich and very nice, with a very nice blend of dark fruits, espresso, black walnut, carob, vanilla and a touch of sour milk when swirled. Mouthfeel is very nice...a pleasant acidity, a touch of chalk, and a smooth medium body. The taste is a recap of the aroma...a very nice balance of roasted malts with a lingering sweetness in the aftertaste mixed with some grassy green hops. The hops contribute some sharp green and leafy acidity in the finish which is a little off. Bitterness is mild but well balanced against the rich roasted malts. What makes it robust is the amount of chocolate and black malts in here.

Overall, a nice porter, but I would have liked it more with less flavor and aroma hops, less black patent malt, and a bit more pale malt. Yummy. I would still buy it again. Similar to Southern Tiers if you happen to like theirs.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2012 23:55:58 | More by Mitchster
Photo of flexabull


3.73/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep black color with a big tan head.

Nice roasted malt and chocolate nose, with a hint of coffee beans.

Taste is very malty up front. Really heavy roast flavor, like dark roasted coffee beans, and a slightly sweet light cream. Very dry and bitter on the finish, with a very mineral like hop bite. This is a pretty strong porter.

Mouthfeel is a bit fleeting and thin, but not bad.

Drinkability is good. This is a pretty solid porter. Worth trying, even though I can think of quite a few better beers in the style.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2009 01:36:56 | More by flexabull
Photo of WoodBrew


3.79/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Sit Bobo....sit...Good dog...for those who are in and round 40yrs will know what reference I just put down. Bobo poured an opaque black with ecru head that is thick and leaving some lace. The scent has roast and hints of chocolate. The taste has some coffee, caramel and peat. The mouthfeel is lighter in body with good carbonation. Overall its an ok porter....definitely sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2014 01:31:22 | More by WoodBrew
Photo of Crosling


3.43/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours surprisingly dark, appears black in the glass with a large, frothy head of a light tan. Nose smells mainly of roast, a touch of chocolate & dark fruit. Has some richness to the malts. Well balanced and big. Notes of chocolate covered raisin. A nice beer overall.

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2009 06:50:34 | More by Crosling
Photo of harrymel


2.53/5  rDev -33.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottled late December, 2011

Pours brown with a fleeting peanut head and some residual bubbles on the rim afterwords. Smells like a standard porter with dry malts, hints of coffee and soil with some nutty character. The flavor is a bit simple to me with a dry dusky coffee flavor and some hints of unsweetened cocoa powder. There's a certain emptiness to the body and moderate on hi carb - this is missing the mark on mouthfeel for the style IMO. Overall, this is a porter that I could drink, but am not likely to choose over the other porters in the region.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2012 07:54:40 | More by harrymel
Photo of BretSikkink


3.88/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown mahogany color, the foam looks really great and sticks around. Served in an unfortunate shaker pint, but the nose still wafts up pretty well. Some roasted malt comes up along with caramel, toffee, crystal malt, and just the faintest touch of vanillin.

Solidly bitter, with enough chocolate and coffee to keep things moving along. A touch of vanilla and even oak. The mouthfeel could use a boost, but overall it was a pretty impressive outing, and a bit of a sleeper.

Serving type: on-tap

04-29-2010 03:58:36 | More by BretSikkink
Photo of Jayli


3.78/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: This beer pours a thick jet black with a two finger of light brown head. Head recedes quickly leaving wispy lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is of coffee and dark chocolate.

T: Taste starts with a hint of hop bite to it, thena big dose of bitter baker's chocolate. Coffee notes filter in mingled with a bit sweeter milk chocolate. Finish is are of burnt malts.

M: Medium body, low carbonation, a touch thin but clean.

D: Tasty beer, goes down easily, nice and bitter. This is a highly enjoyable porter. One that you could enjoy a few pints of.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2010 20:02:54 | More by Jayli
Photo of Beaver13


2.55/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle. Pours a dark brown black with a large creamy brown head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is sweet chocolate malts, some acidic coffee and some smoke. It all washes out quickly other than acidic leather.

The flavor is roasted malts with very acidic coffee and a burnt bitterness at the end. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and la little watery.

Overall, I remember liking previous bottle much more than this. This one seems to have a lot of off notes and is very acidic.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2009 02:53:46 | More by Beaver13
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Bobo's Robust Porter from Big Sky Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 191 ratings.