Dismiss Notice
We're celebrating 10 years of BeerAdvocate magazine with $10 print subscriptions for US residents.

Subscribe now!

Founders Porter | Founders Brewing Company

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
1,569 Reviews
Founders PorterFounders Porter

Brewed by:
Founders Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No absence of hops gives Founders' robust porter the full flavor you deserve and expect.

45 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-11-2003

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 1,569 | Ratings: 7,140
Photo of andrewinski1
4.07/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass. The color is black with a small medium tan head.

There is a nice robust malty aroma with notes of coffee.

The taste is dry and malty, with a nice bitter finish, with just a touch of zesty hops.

The mouthfeel is light to medium with nice crisp carbonation.

This is a really good; straight-forward porter.

 333 characters

Photo of Christoffer91
4.07/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Starting to see Founders show up in CA, which is exciting. Had this right after an Oscar Blues Death by Coconut, honestly just starting to understand the difference between stouts and porters here. This is decidedly more bitter, and has an intense earthy hop character on the back end. Smooth round malt flavors with a touch of roast. Great beer.

 346 characters

Photo of DrewV
4.07/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle (bottled on 3/17/11) at approx. 50 degrees F into a tulip glass.

A: Pours a chocolate/black liquid with a 1-finger tan head. Spotty lacing and nice "legs" on the glass, due to the relatively high ABV.

S: Sweet bakers chocolate, mild coffee, typical roasty aromas. A bit sweeter than most other porters. No hops detected in the aroma.

T: Roasty malts up front, a perfect blend of coffee and bittersweet chocolate. Definite hop presence balances out the sweetness, fading to a full dry coffee finish. By comparison, I find Edmund Fitzgerald to decay to more of a chocolate finish. This is a nice change of pace for me. Very robust, smoky, heavy roast flavor.

M: Relatively high carbonation for this style, a bit bigger than most other porters I've had. Not as creamy as Edmund Fitzgerald, for example. Overall a good mouthfeel, but more akin to a "stout light" than a porter. Lowest marks here. (NOTE: I'm very surprised that most of the reviews indicate low carbonation. My particular bottle is well carbonated, if not overly so.)

O: Good ABV for a porter, if not a bit high for the style, but it's completely hidden. This would be a welcome treat if I were in the mood for more of a stout-ish beer, but as a porter, it's a bit too "big" in my book. Extremely robust, smoky and roasty. This is ahuge porter. Nonetheless, a quality brew and worthy of a solid A-.

I have to say, there are a good number of quality American stouts and porters being produced these days. Founders is right up there with the best of them and you can't go wrong with many of their beers. If you find this one on tap somewhere, don't hesitate, just order a pint (or two).

 1,673 characters

Photo of CurtFromHershey
4.07/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - pours pitch black with a root beer float head which quickly dwindles to some thin lacing around the edges.
S - bitter chocolate with just a hint of coffee
T - similar to the nose but also with some caramel toffee notes.
M - thick, creamy, a bit wet. Would rather it a bit drier.
O - one of my favorite American porters. Hard to beat it for the price. If the finish was a bit drier, I'd have a hard time drinking anything else.

 431 characters

Photo of TheSixthRing
4.06/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours a near black, baker's chocolate brown with cola brown edging. Powdered cocoa colored head attains only a half finger of thickness with sub-par retention. Lacing is small and spotty.

Smell - A fair, sweet chocolate aroma with subtle bitterness sitting beneath.

Taste - Starts with sweet milk chocolate, backed by lesser notes of bitter dark chocolate nibs. Moderate earth and coffee character mid-taste, then finishes with more milk chocolate sweetness. Subtle berry and just a hair of smokey bitterness lingers long into the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with low carbonation. Somewhat silky with good smoothness on the finish.

Overall - A strong example of an American Porter, right up there with Black Butte. Could prove an excellent dessert beer, as I imagine it pairing well with strawberry cheesecake. So glad Founders has hit NorCal, as this isn't a beer I'd have likely traded for again, but will instead be an occasional purchase now that it's readily available.

 1,001 characters

Photo of mechamifune
4.06/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours into an imperisl pint glass a not quite pitch black, but very dark for a porter.

Starts with a .5 in light brown head that quickly gives to about .25 that never really goes away. Very nice and obvious lacing. A good looking beer.

Smell is mostly chocolate and dark malts. I find it somewhat muted though, but by that note I don't really think of porters as being vrey aromatic. Anyway, its a good smell, but not really a standout aspect of this beer.

Taste is very rich up front. The chocolate notes come through in the beginning and give way to a slight bitter kick by the end. A very "stout" like porter IMO, but still to style. Taste feels complex though I admit I am having a hard time describing it in any additional meaningful detail.

Mouthfeel is a standout, as it is with so many of Founders beers. Very rich, smooth, and velvety. More so than some imperial stouts i've had. Remarkably smooth and easy to drink.

Overall this is an underappreciated gem of a beer, and i feel slightly guilty for going so long between purchasing it. In terms of founders "regular" lineup, this might be the best beer they make.

 1,127 characters

Photo of TCgoalie
4.06/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes from Founders on 5/9/10.

The pour is a beautiful two fingers of brown head. Pitch black in color with excellent lacing. This is what a porter should look like!

The scent is that of roasted toffee, coffee, and some chocolate malts.

Taste: Rich chocolate malts blend with roasty bitter nuts. There is a nice bitterness at the end which is well placed. I would prefer a little more in the middle of the taste, but overall it is solid.

The mouthfeel is medium to slightly full. There is also a nice smooth, creamy character.

This is as drinkable as a porter should be. A solid standard Porter with looks to brag about.

 626 characters

Photo of Mojo
4.06/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Now this is a beer that knows how to get your attention. It pours a deep opaque black with little to no head and not much lacing. The smell is pretty powerful and I think I detected a hint of alcohol (which I can't always smell). Mouthfeel is full and complex. Not so much carbonation, but a malty hoppy goodness that finishes perfectly with a coffee and chocolatey backend. Good stuff, but not for the AAL timid crowd.

Founders scores again!!!!

 446 characters

Photo of Back_in_the_Saddle
4.06/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This was poured into a nonic pint glass.
The appearance was a gentle dark brown close to black color-ed body with a one finger white foamy head that dissipated nicely letting off some speckled lacing roaming around the glass.
The smell started off with a robust piney hoppiness when this beer is fresh and then in age, this one lets the roastiness become the leading aroma with the piney-ness sliding into the background.
The taste was mainly robustly sweet with a profound bitterness of the hops embracing the flavors to combine eloquently. The aftertaste lends a hand to the blend between the bitterness and the sweetness.
The mouthfeel was about a light to medium on the body with a charging bitter harshness over my tongue. Carbonation feels good and does end up allowing the roastier side of the house pronouncing its power as the beer ages.
Overall, to me, I've always loved this American styled porter though through its life it changes a lot in its age. I'd still have again.

 983 characters

Photo of Brenden
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This one pours black with hues of nothing. Just thick, inky blackness. The head pours about two fingers but doesn't take very long to dissipate, though a very slight, thin head remains. Nice lacing clings all over the glass.

The smell is what I've come to expect from a good porter. Coffee, hints of dark chocolate, a slight alcoholic tinge and a little bitterness.

The taste is likewise what I've come to expect from a good porter. All of the above with a smoky grain flavor and balanced light bitterness.

The mouthfeel is thick and rich, very nice and smooth. Carbonation is light and it's medium-bodied.

All in all I found myself in agreement with the claim on the bottle that this is "dark, rich and sexy."

 714 characters

Photo of ElGordo
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark brown, almost black, with a nice, small, creamy head. Aroma of roasted dark and chocolate malts, with some chicory and a bit of a nutty character.
Palate is big on roasted malt up front, with notes of chocolate and mocha. A rich, nuttiness emerges mid-palate, and the roasted character becomes tempered by a good dose of hoppy bitterness.
Body is creamy and full, just thick enough to hold the robust flavor. This beer goes down pretty easily for being so strong and full of flavor. It's one of my first experiences with Founders' brews, and I'm looking forward to trying many more.

 602 characters

Photo of tempest
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single at Abe's Cold Beer. This is a heck of a porter, reminds me of a slightly drier Anchor Porter (which I also love). This beer just blasts dry, dark, rich chocolate, with a coffee roast edge to it. There's a cocoa liquor accent in the background, along with a undercurrent of dark bread and whole grain crust. There's nothing small about this porter, though that holds back the drinkability of the brew. As much as I dig this beer, I probably couldn't drink more than a few in one session. Still, go find this beer and drink it.

 544 characters

Photo of jables7
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- this beer could blot out the sun. very dark with a little bit of tan head. decent lacing.

S- roasted malt in the forefront lets you know it's there. not as strong of a smell as I have come to expect from a Founders beer but still solid for the style.

T- follows closely along with the smell. the roasted malt is by far the most prominent feature with some caramel notes to follow.

M- a very thick beer for the style that coats the mouth completely. one of the better versions of this style that I've had in this category.

O- a quality representation of the style from one of the best breweries around.

 609 characters

Photo of bluemoonswoon
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz stubby brown bottle poured into an imperial pint glass.

Fast forming and fluffy mocha head perches its inch thick body over this wonderully deep concoction. Coming out of the bottle I was surprised by how thick this beer looked, the consistency of ink with only the faintest of dark brown highlights to differentiate it from blackness. Mild lattice work lacing going on, clinging to the sides of the glass above a now thin, soapy looking, cap.

Certainly well hopped but roasty enough to stand on its own. Dark earthy fruits give way to a thicker, smokier, tobacoo like and almost meaty/bacony combination coupled with a charred malt bittersweetness. Good but nothing I haven't experienced before. Reminds me a bit of Edmund Fitzgerald.

At first almost too sweet, a cloying, magic marker kind of sweetness that thankfully lasts an instant or less and moves quickly away from this and then into and bitter chocolate and scorched coffee combination. Finish is long, hops ravage the center of the tongue and the back of the throat while wrapping like an anaconda around your tastebuds. This beer is dry dry dry, no real fruit flavors to pick up on as I thought the aroma would lead me to. Not saying that this is a bad thing necessarily, its just not what I was expecting. I am however really diging the smokier aspects of this beer, again I swear I can pick up just the slightest bit of cured meat in here and I really are enjoying picking such a flavor up.

I do wish though that the beer was a bit more complex, had a bit more of and underscored flavor profile. Don't get me wrong, I really enjoy this beer and am looking forward to the rest of the sixer and at 8bucks it is one of the cheaper ones I've picked up recently. You could do far far worse than this beer. I would say you could also probably use this beer as a gateway for those that want to try rachbiers but are affraid of commiting to an entire bottle without knowing what they are getting into.

 1,968 characters

Photo of Fluke828
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a Murphy's Imperial Tulip-esque Pint/Pub Glass.
Bottle says it was bottled on "03/31/11"

A-> Pours black as night and looks quite thick. Aggressive pour yields just about a full finger of coffee/mocha colored head that quickly fades but still leaves a thin layer of lace/bubbles on the glass as well as across the top terminus of liquid in the glass.

S-> Smell is dominated by chocolate and coffee with some bitter notes in there as well. Burnt biscuit alt smells are also present. Getting a bit of toffee and roasted bread also. Some faint chocolate molasses is detectable as well. Really a lot going on here.

T-> Definitely get the roasted malt/burnt biscuit/breads up front which is quickly followed by a refreshing bitter kick. Smoky dark chocolate makes itself known in the middle and becomes ever more prevalent as I let this brew warm a bit. Going to see if anything else comes through with some more warmth...Really getting an earthy, woody smokiness coupled with bitter and sweet notes in the middle as this goes down. Really a complex brew that isn't effing around....

M-> I want to say full bodied but wonderfully balanced and not thick at all (like I thought it looked from the pour). Not thin by any means yet carbonated enough to be pleasant and refreshing yet smooth and silky enough to retain its robustness. Really admirable...

O-> This is one fine porter. Not that I expected anything less from Founders and at the risk of sounding like a Founders fanboy, this brew is really quite drinkable/enjoyable. Borderline quaff-able. Smooth and crisp, I could drink this as a nightcap or as a dessert beer or with dessert or all at the same time. Wonderfully complex and delicious with a lot going on. Really liked the earthy, woody, smoky flavors that came through that were married beautifully with a mild bitterness that made this exceptionally smooth and drinkable. Founders Porter has solidified a spot in my fridge no matter what season it is....

 2,007 characters

Photo of clarkm04
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance- Very dark and robust. Forms a nice creamy head that dissipates

Smell- Definite notes of the roasted and chocolate malts. Very inviting.

Taste- Has a bittering taste upfront that transitions to a very smooth aftertaste. Very light and creamy on the palate for the last 2/3 of a drink. Lots of chocolate malt notes in the taste. Very full favored yet with an easy after taste.

Mouthfeel- A little harsh and ever so slightly unbalanced. Probably the low point for me on this either wise outstanding porter.

Drinkability- Very good. You can easily drink two or three of these in one session.

Overall - Very good example of this style. Definitely a little more bittering then some examples of porter but I really like the overall experience. Another very good beer from the Founders folks.

 802 characters

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance was nice, good mocha head and very nice lacing, mostly black in color.

Smelled and tasted of very nice roasty malts, coffee, toffee, cocoa, maybe a touch of dark fruits, and a slight earthiness as well.

Body was medium and the smooth carbonation was great.

Overall it was a very nice brew and one of my more favored beers from Founder's.

 352 characters

Photo of tobelerone
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The small thin head on this beer disappears quickly, leaving it looking almost like a glass of coke; black, opaque, bubbly.

Moderately aromatic; not a super strong smell here but nicely roasty with hints of chocolate. Right on target.

I like the flavor better than the aroma of this beer; it has an excellent balance of roast malt, hops, coffee and to a lesser extent, chocolate. Medium bitterness.

Excellent mouthfeel that mixes effervescent carbonation that stimulates the tongue with a pleasing creaminess.

Very effectively done. The aroma isn't exactly exceptional, just good, while the taste is very nice, but on the bitter side of the style. This bitterness may slightly dominate the other flavors. It's not as vivid as I had hoped, lacks huge chocolate or coffee notes. Drinks very well and the mouthfeel is trult excellent.

As good an example of a porter as I have had recently but still not the pinnacle for me, I suppose.

 938 characters

Photo of Suds
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a very dark, black brew. It sports a full, tan-colored head and leaves a thin lace. Roasted malt aroma...almost smokey and burnt with some chocolate-milk scents in the background. Not much of a hop scent. Solid porter smell. The taste is reminiscent of robust coffee. Some sweetness, but mostly a very roasted, bitter/burnt malt and grain flavor. Full in body...almost creamy at times. I really enjoyed this porter. Well done.

 434 characters

Photo of Brubaker
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Black with a mocha head that shrinks then persists.

S- Malts & coffee

T- Coffee (did i mention coffee?) then the malts with a hopy finish

M- Medium to rich body, very smooth

O- Coffee porter at its best. Good balance of malts, flavors, and hops.

Would Drink
Would Buy
Might Make

 286 characters

Photo of jsprain1
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours an almost black color. Really beautiful deep color. Head is half a finger and leaves little lacing.
S- Very roasted malt notes on the nose. Really getting a lot of coffee on the nose. There is a bit of a bitter chocolate aroma and I'm getting just a touch of dark fruit.
T- It's a bit sweeter on the tongue than I would have guessed from the aroma. More milk chocolate than bitter chocolate but I'm getting that coffee flavor in there. A light hop note is particularly noticable in the finish.
M- Smooth, just slightly silky on the tongue. Carbonation is low, but I like it that way here. Just a touch fuller and I would give it the full 5 here.
O- A delicious porter and at only 6.5% it really is getting the flavors in per abv. Definite recomendation to any fans of the style.

 788 characters

Photo of SWMeyer4141
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Coca-Cola Pint Glass

Appearance-Opaque black with a very very thin brown head that leaves a thin film on top. Little lacing.

Smell-Had to wait for beer to warm a bit, then got a lot of coffee, not in your face though. Some chocolate as well.

Was expecting more coffee in the taste and only got some right up front then went to a milky sweet, fucking awesome chocolate. Then I take another sip and get a ton of coffee with a light and sweet bitter finish. Some Roast and Smoke in there as well which just brings out the flavors in every sip.

Mouthfeel-Medium bodied with a nice amount of carbonation. Very easy to drink.

Overall-Another good Porter. I've been drinking alot of good ones lately. Very easy to drink before, during, or after a meal. Had a 2nd one with a stew and went perfectly.

 810 characters

Photo of Chico1985
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark, rich, and...somewhat sexy I suppose. Small tan head disappears a little quickly and forms a ring, leaves spotty lacing. Smell is mostly chocolate malts, some coffee. Taste is bitter coffee, dark chocolate, a little smoke. I'm also picking up some hop flavors such as citrus. Mouthfeel is very good, nice and velvety, perfect for a porter. Another solid offering from Founders, great for the price, I will be finishing this 6-pack pretty quickly I'm sure. Glad to see this available for purchase in this area finally.

 528 characters

Photo of HopHead84
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Consumed on 9/7/2009 and poured into a snifter. The beer appears black with a one finger light brown head and good retention.

The nose is roasted malt with some dark chocolate and a touch of coffee. Some earthy hop character is evident.

The flavor is bitter and roasted malt. Black coffee notes are strong and some dark chocolate is again present. The finish is dry and roasted with lingering bitterness. The flavor is pretty great.

The beer is full bodied with low medium carbonation. The mouthfeel is bit thin and watery. Aside from that this is a good Porter.

 565 characters

Photo of lamarr04
4.05/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a mug

A: pours a very dark brown with an inch dark tan head

S: Aroma is roasted malt with dark chocolate and prune in the background. also a bit of vanilla/sweetness to the nose

T:First thing i notice is a nice bitterness followed by dark chocolate and prune at the back of the tongue. A nice malty sweetness balances the bitter chocolate

M: more carbonation than i was expecting although i kind of like that. medium smooth body. the finish is a bit slick and the beer coats the tongue

 516 characters

Founders Porter from Founders Brewing Company
4.24 out of 5 based on 7,140 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer FestĀ® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • Free Trial Subscription

    Reside in the US? Interested in a free 1-month trial subscription to the print edition of BeerAdvocate magazine?

    Yes! Sign Me Up!