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Founders Porter | Founders Brewing Company

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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
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Reviews: 1,569 | Ratings: 7,142
Photo of cjoc83
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thick dark brown bordering on black with 2 fingers of creamy mocha-colored head. Head sticks around for a few minutes and then settles into a foamy layer, but still leaves nice lacing.

Smell is dark roasted malts, dark chocolate and hints of coffee.

A mix of sweet milk chocolate and a slightly bitter roastiness greets me at the first sip, then segues nicely into some dark chocolate and coffee bean notes. A mild bitter hop finish with hints of smoke. Delicious.

mouthfeel is rich and creamy with low carbonation. Fitting for the style.

Overall, definitely one of the better porters out there. Really rich flavors. The roasted malts mix very well with bitter bakers chocolate, espresso, and an underlying milk chocolate sweetness with a nice subtle bitter hop finish. If you're into dark beers, chances are you'll love this. This has always been one of my go-to porters.

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Photo of jgreenearrow
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours an opaque deep brown (nearly black) color. No light passes through this beer. A thin, creamy, light brown head develops on the top of the pour with lacing on the side of the glass.

S: Espresso and cocoa beans dominate the nose on this beer. Some sweet molasses and malt notes also present.

T: Sweetness of molasses and malt bursts onto the tongue at the onset of the sip. Chocolate and espresso blend into the middle of the sip, accompanying the sweetness. At the finish, the sweetness fades to a distinct bitterness of espresso and some earthiness.

M: This beer has a medium body. It is somewhat creamy on the tongue with decent carbonation.

Overall this is a tasty porter, one of the best that I have had. This is a great offering in the Founders lineup.

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Photo of beyah
4.69/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Really dark, dark tan head, less than 1 finger, slight lacing

Smell: Roasted Malts are in the forefront

Taste: A perfect balance between the Chocolate and Roasted Malts, earthy hops are there, but not overpowering, this beer is all about balance

Mouthfeel: Very smooth, only enough carbonation, perfect for the style.

Overall: One of the best Porters out there, a must try, give one to a friend who isn't sure about Porters, they will be presently surprised.

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Photo of portwood
4.23/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Smell: vanilla, sweet chocolate, hint of smoke & hops.
Taste: coffee, caramel, silky smooth, low carbonation.
Finish: burnt toast, dusty cocoa, soft bitterness. winner!
(bottled 11/20/15)

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

a - black with creamy dark tan head, excellent lacing

s - rich nutty smell with chocolate and coffee, also quite hoppy

t - sweet and very interesting taste that is a mix of chocolate, nuts, burnt malt, and hops. Most of the time these flavors separate well but for me this has a solid mix throughout. Has just the right amount of hops and roasty burnt flavor profile for a porter. amazing how the complexity of flavors manage to blend together so well.

m - full and smooth mouthfeel

d - a fantastic porter. definitely towards the very top of the list for me.

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Photo of imanidiot777
4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours so dark of a brown that it is essentially black, completely opaque; not a hint of light gets through. The head is dark cream and stays for a long time and leaves cream lacing on the glass. Best looking beer I ever poured so far.

S: Heavy on the chocolate even with my bad nose, some coffee and malt as well.

T: Chocolate and coffee come through strong, malty, and a little bitter from hops as well.

M: Smooth and well crafted, good carbonation level.

D: The one and only thing that I don't like about this beer is how heavy it sits in the stomach. It won't stop me from drinking it though and otherwise it is utterly amazing.

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Photo of thirdeye11
3.89/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Ktown67 for a bottle of this during an in person trade.

Presentation: Poured from 12oz bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

A: Pours a beautiful 1 1/2 finger dark brown head. The liquid is viscous, has great bubbles throughout, some yeasty floaters, and coats the glass with exceptional lacing. Even leaves a little particulate behind in the lacing which I find to be a great thing. It pours a deep black that only allows a little light around the edges in mahogany tones. This is a great looking beer in every way.

S: Smell isn't super exciting for me. It's a nice roasted malt, some dark chocolate in the nose. Pretty straight forward, not complex but pleasing.

T: The taste is really exceptional in the style. It is roasty toasty malt with lots of dark chocolate and unsweetened cocoa flavors. There is some bitterness (some hops maybe?) from the dark chocolate flavors, but it doesn't really linger on the palette which is good. Wish it had more of the creamy flavors, but I understand that it's a porter and this is spot on for the style. There is also some alcohol in the profile as it warms which surprised me at its ABV. Bitterness increases with warmth as well.

M: Like the other Founders beers I've had I don't think this could be improved upon much if at all. Not thin at all, but also not thick. The weight is just right. It's slick in my mouth and this is a good thing. Plenty of carbonation, but not too much. Pretty creamy, but maybe it could have just SLIGHTLY more like Founders Breakfast Stout. Aside from that it's perfect.

D: Due to the overwhelming roasty flavors and slight bitterness I am not sure I could drink this all night without wanting for something a little more "refreshing". I do think I could have 2 without any problem at all, but it seems to finish slightly dry.

Overall I generally dislike porters, but I am finding that in the stout and porter styles I haven't had any better than Founders. If everyone's porters and stouts tasted like these guys I would drink them a LOT more often, since I can't get it here I don't drink them that much. I will seek this out again and recommend it to ANYONE wanting to have a great porter that hasn't found one they like yet. This may change your mind.

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Photo of kylehayworth
4.35/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: It pours a deep chocolaty brown. It leaves a dark/tan head.

S: Chocolate and coffee.

T: Chocolate upfront, then a nice hint of roasted coffee. They play very well with each other not overbearing one way or another.

M/D: Very smooth. The bottle says it all," dark, rich, and sexy."

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Photo of xpdrinker
3.88/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottled 11/14/11 poured into Libbey porter/stout glass.

A - Pours a glossy black with pencil-thin mocha head that fizzes out into a chunky ring around the glass, oily surface and moderate lacing.

S - More coffee than I got with FBS, strangely enough. Chocolate-covered raisins, sweet molasses.

T - Fresh coffee with medium alcohol presence up front, the faintest hint of vanilla on the finish. Noticeable hop presence but plays well with the coffee bitterness.

M - Creamy and smooth at the start, but washes out to a thin, almost watery finish. The hop/coffee bitterness leaves a nice prickly finish that distracts from the suddenly frail body.

O - Quite an enjoyable, solid porter. I prefer a slightly heavier mouthfeel but the flavors are good enough that it's not much of a distraction, and there's a nice complex bitterness that jumps from coffee to hops and back.

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Photo of Pabs311
3.96/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- pours a nice, rich, dark black with very thin mocha head. very minimal lacing coats the glass as i drink this beer.

S- not overpowering but on the aroma is mainly of chocolate and molasses.

T- similar to the nose, altough more potent. chocolate, molasses, caramel and sweet roasted malts all play an integral part in the flavor of this beer. nice.

M/D- medium bodied and creamy in texture with minimal carbonation. great for this style of beer and very silky. great drinking porter, not my favorite of all but up there on my list

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Photo of TLWalsh
4.41/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark and intense, close to black with a thin tan head. Has a pronounced cocoa and coffee aroma. A medium carbonated mouthfeel and a rich roasted sweetness that finishes with a hint of bitterness. This an excellent porter, full flavored an well balanced.

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Photo of StoutishDan
3.63/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked this up for just around $1.79 at Total Wine in Marietta, Ga. Definitely cheaper than I had anticipated, after hearing so much good stuff about this beer.

A - Super dar, stout like pour. I put a flashlight up to and saw a little bit of mahogany color. Very pretty, actually.

S - Picking up some roasted (almost burnt) malt notes. Slightly metallic and also rubbery. Maybe this one's getting old or something, the date...well crap, the date on the bottle is from about 2 months ago. Not sure if that makes a difference. Smells kind of like a bon fire.

T - Bitter hops up front tag-teaming with the molasses-like malt flavors. I'm eating a fire, here and someone dropped some bacon in there. Not as sweet as I'd hoped, actually has a slight salty taste.

O - It's definitely not one of those lagers or brown ales where you could down 3 or 4 of them. Unlike Chad from "Chad'z Beer Reviews" I could not drink too many of these. Maybe I'm just a sissy, calling myself "Stoutish Dan" and all. Psh! Pozer!

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Photo of NardiByNature
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Aggressive pouring leads to an awesome beach sand head and cratered like another planet. The brew’s a rich dark mocha and this is easily recognizable as a nice looking porter/stout.

S: mocha, barley, some melty chocolate that comes through as the beer warms/gets down there in the glass. Awesome.

T: Definitely the melty dark chocolate at first, but it’s not too sweet; I love the bittering hops coming through in the taste that weren’t apparent in the nose.

M: finishes like a champ – a perfect level of carbonation leaves both sweet and bitter flavors hanging around.

O: excellent balance. I like this style but they’re usually not my go-to at the sixer shop. But I felt like it on this crisp February day in Pittsburgh and I’m certainly glad I snagged this toasty and full-bodied brew. If you like the style, then it’s a most solid option.

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Photo of srv33
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Near black pour, light cocao lacing. Been dying to try this one for some time. Scent of milk chocolate, coffee, and maybe some brown sugar. Mouthfeel is thick and well balanced. Lush chocolate tones, black tea flavors, unfolding into a dark roast coffee taste that progresssively gets more bitter. Tastes just ever so slightly light for a porter though, reminiscent of Bell's Porter that, while both exceptional porters - just slightly lacking. Both are similar Porters though, with Bell's being more smooth and Founder's having somewhat more complex, deeper, and more developed flavors. Excellent porter overall.

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Photo of Dave_in_GR
4.6/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance is a very dark brown with a tiny bit of tan colored head.

Smell is dominated by chocolate, maybe a bit of roasted coffee in there as well.

Taste is bold, some chocolate and coffee flavor but also more bitterness than I'm used to in a beer like this. It all works well together, really tasty.

Mouthfeel is very thick; this is a heavy bodied beer but with a bit of carbonation that lightens it up. Not an easy drinking beer or anything, but easier than you would expect.

This bottle has been in my fridge for over a month as I polished off my stash of breakfast stout, really wish I had gotten to this sooner!

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Photo of tippebrewcrew2
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Abv 6.7

This beer is absolutely amazing. This is my number one porter, my golden example. I have tried as many beers as I can get my hands on from founders and they have become my top 3 favorite brew co. I have yet to find a beer that they make that isn't good and they seem to have a knack for blowing my mind away.

A= 5.0 Engine oil black with a very small head that is dark brown and medium lasting

S= 4.5 The smell is like a fresh cup of coffee and the finest dark German chocolate you can find

T= 4.5 First you get smooth melted chocolate then hit with afternoon dark French roasted coffee followed up by a mild bitter dark chocolate after taste

M= 4.0 It feels like the marriage of dark chocolate and dark roasted coffee

D= 4.0 Great beer that I could probably drink a few.

I just wanted to take the time to express my love for Founders brewery again. There centennial IPA is one of the beers that got me into the great world of micro brewing. I just climbed the beer-a-myd with their red rye p.a. to their pale ale to their porter. This is a true beauty of a beer and it makes me nothing but happy. I hope others can get the joy I get from this beer. Long live Founders, long live craft beer!

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Photo of trygelski1
5/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle just purchased today poured into a tulip glass:

Look: Dark black with about an inch or so of a nice tan head.

Smell: Chocolate, coffee, roast.

Taste: This porter tastes amazing. Chocolate, coffee, hints of robustness/smokiness.

Feel: Rich and creamy.

Overall: This is hands down the best porter I have had to date. Its gets a slight edge over the Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald and I think its due to it being more robust and smoky. This is my second favorite beer from Founders next to the Breakfast Stout.

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Photo of SovereignGood
4.04/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Founders finally hit SoCal; picked up at WF DTLA.

L: deep brown/black with a slight dark red hue when held up to the light. Finger head that seems to dissipate to a thin rim around the glass leaving plenty of dark colored lacing.

S: dark roasted malt, chocolate, coffee, some caramel.

T: chocolate, roasted malt, some smokiness in the back, hint of dark fruit?

M: thin to medium mouthfeel. Suits the style well - on the lighter side of dark beers.

Overall, glad I was able to try this. Picked up a 6 pack and will enjoy the rest.

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Photo of challenja
4.53/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a Dogfish Head Pint glass

A:Dark burnt sienna in appearance, an amazing Dark Mocha Head that holds its own 3 minutes in. Nice white foam lace, holding the top part of the beer head. Amazing! Defiantly the best looking Porter Head I have ever seen!

S:- Sweet fig, Chicory barrel, burnt French roast, dark cocoa, dark overly dry raisins.

T:- Burnt chocolate bitters, sweeter chicory barrel, nice dark fruit, sweet figs. Sweeter than most porters that I have tried.

M : Medium body, sweet and slightly creamy mouthfeel, it was served cold, and downed quickly while watching IN the Mouth Of Madness. A porter with a nice lingering finish, Top 3 material.

O: Top 3 Porters that I must have on Cask. Founders astounds again, my go to Porter which is easily attainable in my area. Get a 4 pack now!

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Photo of Chincino
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured to be a very dark brown with a small amount of tan/mocha head.

The aroma to this beer consisted of malts, coffee, and a bit of chocolate.

Taste was rich and smooth and you could definitely taste the chocolate notes. Good carbonation with this beer.

I would definitely try this beer again.


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Photo of RocPorterFanatic
4.2/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - dark, rich brown, like baker's chocolate. Creamy, off white head.

Smell - alot of dark chocolate and coffee.

Taste - Alot of dark roast malt. Molasses, bittersweet chocolate, a bit of tobacco. A tiny bit of alcohol warmth in the finish. Very pleasant

Mouthfeel - Not as creamy as it looks, would be amazing on Nitro. Very delightful, yet too effervescent for the style.

Overall - This is always on the list of the most popular and best porters, and its obvious why. Great beer, a flagship of the style.

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Photo of AnPiobaire
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured the Founders Porter from a 12 oz bottle into a glass goblet at about 49 degrees. It poured a dark brown with minimal head and a little lacing.

The nose was raosted coffee and some smoke.

The taste had coffee like acidity with some subtle underlying notes of bakers chocolate. The porter finishes crisply with a bitter finish.

The mouthfeel is thin with moderate carbonation and a clean finish.

Overall this is a nice porter which is not overpowering and is easy to drink. Enjoy!!!

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Photo of BradenMK
4.5/5  rDev +6.1%

Appearance - This has the pitch-black color and foamy brown head of what most people would consider a stout. Which I think is awesome.

Aroma - Roasty. Dark, burnt toast, some coffee, a heavy dose of unsweetened cocoa powder. Extremely dank, but earthy hops. This stuff smells like darkness (and that's not all good, lol).

Taste - Bitter and very roasty upfront, there is only a little sweetness to tame the flavors of the dark malts, and yet there is great complexity in the form of something smoky. I would assume they use neither peated malt or smoked malt in this, but I could be wrong. The malt profile is that of ashy, smoky unsweetened cocoa. Doesn't that sound awesome. The hops bite rather hard too, with those earthy, herbal, bitter qualities.

Mouthfeel - Here's where this beer truly shines, agreeing with Tectactoe. This beer just feels luxurious in the mouth. I have had many beers, and the feeling doesn't get better than this (not for the style anyway). Like silk. Like if you can imagine silk turned into liquid and poured down your throat, that's how this beer feels. It's just tremendously smooth.

Overall - This is actually NOT my favorite porter (that honor goes to Smuttynose's Robust Porter, because the flavor they are able to capture is just amazing), but this has got to be one of the most well-crafted porters on the planet. It was the first time I drank a porter and was really wowed. This is heads and shoulders better than GL Edmund Fitz, in my opinion, it's just got so much more depth to it. If you like porters, this is one of the deepest, most nuanced options available, in my opinion. If you like non-Imperial stouts, this should be right up your alley as well, because this one blurs the lines.

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Photo of paulginva
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

APPEARANCE: Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, produced a very nice 1.5" rocky medium-tan head that dissipated slowly with excellent lacing. The body was a murky very dark brown with no carbonation that I could see.

AROMA: Nice roasted coffee aroma along with inflections of oatmeal, espresso, caramel, dark chocolate and sweet molasses as well as fruit and vanilla.

TASTE: Moderate roasted malt flavor, light hops, with a very lightly burnt coffee, espresso, dark chocolate, nutty oatmeal and toffee overtone. Also tasted some dried fruit and vanilla.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium bodied, very smooth on the palate with modest carbonation and a slightly bitter aftertaste. Initial flavor was moderately sweet with the finish being both sweet, lightly bitter and very lightly dry. Body lacing was good and dissipated slowly.

DRINKABILITY: This was a terrific beer that I could have consumed all night long. The complex taste was definitely a wow factor. I'd definitely buy it again.

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Photo of antique
4.37/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Dark brown color, slightly opaque, a 2/3-finger head that hangs around for a decent while before disappearing; the drink doesn't leave too much lacing behind.

Smells of nuts, firewood, some chocolates and caramels, a bit of zest or maybe dried fruits, and a rich syrupy smell that permeates now and again.

Decent carbonation. The initial taste is bitter like coffee or even grapefruit juice, but it immediately yields to an array of nice, very rich and warming dark chocolates and even a faint smokiness, coupled with hints of molasses and earthy tones. The medium-heavy feel of the drink begs to be swirled around in the mouth to absorb all of the flavors, and upon swallowing it simply explodes pleasantly. Aftertaste of something like a nutty bread with a continuation of the mild, smokey/firewood-esque flavors.

A relatively complex porter that falls apart elegantly on the tongue, managing to offer a lot without assaulting the palette. Balanced and nuanced. Deceptively sweet at first, but that overarching coffee bitterness steals the show in a very nice, warming way.

This is what I come for in a porter. Complex but not overpowering; it's not much to look at, but the taste and feel alone clearly earn this brew top marks. Certainly one of the best porters I've ever had.

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Founders Porter from Founders Brewing Company
4.24 out of 5 based on 7,142 ratings.
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