Pennypacker Porter | Appalachian Brewing Company

very good
27 Reviews
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Pennypacker PorterPennypacker Porter

Brewed by:
Appalachian Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by SchmichaelJ on 01-08-2003

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Reviews: 27 | Ratings: 58
Photo of jmdrpi
3.11/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

served from the cask at the Collegeville brewpub location. in a pint glass.

appears almost black, brown around the edges where the light gets through. thin off-white head. mild aroma of roasty malt. flavor is similar, with some notes of milk chocolate and coffee. body is medium, with mild smooth carbonation from the cask serving.

overall - a decent porter. in my opinion, they could bring out the chocolate and coffee flavors more to improve it.

 451 characters

Photo of CraftBeerTastic
4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ba Review #96
Served On: 12/28/2011
Glassware: Tumbler Pint
Labeled ABV: -
Date/ Code: -

Another offering I enjoyed while at the ABC Harrisburg location on my birthday.

Look: Very dark color with minimal light showing through. Head was a 1 finger of dark mocha colored foam. Carbonation was barely noticeable due to the dense black darkness of the beer.

Smell: Roasted marshmallow and toffee notes with semisweet chocolate and a hint of charred oak. Aroma was very nice.

Taste: The taste brought this one home for me. A candy sugar sweetness hit for a split second and then was quickly washed away by roasted earthy malts. The finish was a slightly bitter hop bite with the roasted character returning long into the aftertaste.

This was a fantastic porter. Aside from the mouth feel being on the thinner side, I couldn’t come up with a single bad thing about this beer.

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Photo of stakem
3.06/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at the Harrisburg location. Served in a pint, the brew appears a dark brown color with a finger if creamy tan head. A wall of lace sticks to the glass with patchy formation. Lighter clarity is seen around the edges when held to the light.

The smell of this brew includes mostly roasty grain with some citrus hops and a mineral to almost metallic element throughout. It isn't the most aromatic nose but it isn't terribly off-putting either.

Taste includes the expected roasty grain elentd with some citrus hop inclusion that blends into the mineral character that was present also in the aroma. A light yeasty note and faint chocolate flavoring are present through the body. The finish includes mild chocolate grain and more minerals and citrus notes.

This is a medium bodied brew with a light level of carbonation. A little thin and watery at tines but easy drinking. Not something I would continually seek out but it's one of the better ABC offerings when its available.

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Photo of RJBeverage
3.76/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler filled at ABC in Harrisburg, poured into a glass and consumed in Pittsburgh.

This is a pleasant Porter, which I'd be happy to try again if anyone had it around here.

It pours a nice dark nearly opaque with a brownish tan head. The head is persistent enough to require two attempts to fill the glass. The smell is not strong, with a slight roasty odor. The taste is where this one succeeds nicely for me. A cool refreshing coffee taste, like a chilled expresso. The mouthfeel is not as thick as the taste suggests it would be, but it isn't thin. A very drinkable beer without being overwhelming and without growing boring after the first glass.

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Photo of Dodt
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

decide to finally fill the growler i bought a while back from appalachian.
pours from the growler into a pint glass.
appearance : pours dark brown with a malty colored head.
smell : roasted malts with some coffee notes
taste medium body smooth taste
a very enjoyable beer on a cold winters day.

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Photo of BeerCon5
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown, almost black color. Relatively think dark tan fluffy head.

Roasty scent, coffee and caramel mostly.

The taste was of roasty caramel malts, some chocolate notes, also a bit of coffee at the end.

Medium bodied, smooth and creamy, good carbonation.

This was one of the better offerings I've had from ABC. It seemed to go down quite easily for a porter.

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Photo of glid02
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at the Harrisburg location.

Pours a dark brown color with a one-finger tan head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of lightly roasted malts with good amounts of dark chocolate with leafy hops lingering in the background.

Tastes very similar to how it smells. The roasted malt flavors are a bit stronger than the smell intimates and kick things off. Dark chocolate flavors join in shortly and carry through to a mildly bitter ending. Hops serve to keep the beer from being overly sweet but don't have much greater influence than that.

Mouthfeel is alright. It's a bit on the thin side with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this was a nice-tasting porter however if I could pick between the two I'd certainly go for the stout. Still, worth a shot.

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Photo of ffejherb
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at ABC Harrisburg on 10/9/09.

A - Dark brown body with mahogany highlights and half a finger of milky light tan head that quickly reduced to a thin, patchy veil and yielded a sparse amount of lacing around the glass.

S - Roasty aroma with chocolate and coffee notes, as well as a hint of molasses in the background. There's also quite a bit of nuttiness as well as thick, syrupy sweet notes in the mix.

T - Initial flavor incorporates chocolate and molasses with coffee and earthy bitter notes in the backend. There is also a slight nutty astringency present.

M - Medium bodied with light carbonation and an almost oily texture that ultimately comes across as a bit thin and watery overall. Modest bitter finish with a hint of astringency on the palate.

D - Fine porter, though nothing to write home about. Might be a tad too astringent overall, but there's still plenty of sweetness and a touch of bitterness, giving Pennypacker a bit of complexity.

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Photo of hopdog
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this one on tap.

Poured a dark reddish, brown color with an averaged sized off white head. Aromas of chocolate, roasted malts, caramel, and some coffee. Tastes of chocolate, roasty, and some coffee. Smooth body. Very light bitterness.

Notes from 10/23/04

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Photo of Kegatron
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the ABC on 11/14/08. Served in an oversized Mug Club mug.

Pours a deep, dark brown with a finger of creamy tan head. Thin, 1/4 finger of solid creamy retention that leaves big swathes of lacing behind. The aroma starts with some pretty prominant coffee (with a touch of astringency), caramel, chocolate, and a nice bouquet of floral hops in the back.

The taste is silky caramel and roasted chocolate malts with some coffee character coming out towards the finish. A splash of citrus and a floral feeling hop profile round things out. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a fairly creamy carbonation that possesses an occasional prickle in there as well.

This is a solid Porter from the ABC and is actually probably one of the better seasonals that they put on during the year. Good stuff that I was happy to fill my mug with.

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Photo of tgbljb
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served as a very deep brown colored beer with modest tannish head.
Smell is notable foe roasted malt with some coffee aspects also noted.
Taste is predominately of a roasted coffee character with some bitter chocolate also present.
Finish is mainly sweetish malt with very little hops present.
A nice easy to drink porter.

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Photo of akorsak
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A growler from the Harrisburg brewpub.

A: The porter is a thick black color with dirty brown edges. The head is small to non-existent.

S: The aroma is a roasted chocolate malt.

T: The porter has a clear malt profile of roasted chocolate and toffee. That malt flavor dominates the ale, as there is no hop presence. The big letdown is the lack of sour staleness that I like in porters.

M: The malts are tasty, nice and full of chocolate and toffee notes, but I'd like to see some more hops there.

D: Very drinkable, in fact I cleared out most of the growler on my own.

 571 characters

Photo of HugoGrim
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap at the ABC brewery in Harrisburg, PA.

Served in a standard pint glass. Body is standard black with a substancial head which stayed around for quite some time. Definitely the best looking ABC brew I've tried thus far.

The aroma is predominatly a roasted malt smell.

Flavor is of toasted oats. Hints of sweet caramel and malts also peek in. No hop profile to speak of. Not as full or deep a flavor as I like from a porter, but this is still a good beer. What it lacks in intensity it makes up in drinkability.

 531 characters

Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.57/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark brown with a crimson tint. Out of the tap, only a tiny head and there was no lacing.

S - Slightly dark coffee aroma with a touch of molasses.

T - Dark malt mostly, a mild sweet chocolate meshed with a much stronger burnt flavor. A mild grassy/citrusy hop taste is there as well. Aftertaste is short lived burnt flavor.

M - Smooth, refreshing, slick, no complaints here.

D - Easy to drink. Since ABC always has about 10 different beers on tap, it is likely that I won't have this again, I'd rather try the others, but I wouldn't mind having this again. Nothing spectacular, but certainly enjoyable.

 618 characters

Photo of Gavage
3.76/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: clear dark brown in color with a 1/2" head. Thick lacing develops through the session. Carbonation levels seemed a bit low.

Smell: very soft roasted coffee tones.

Taste: roasted malts and coffee with a hint of dark chocolate and molasses. Average bitterness. This porter has a nice malty level even though it is average in body.

Mouthfeel: lightly crisp at the start, smooth at the finish. Short aftertaste of coffee and roasted malts.

Drinkability: nicely drinkable. Worth a try if on tap.

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Photo of Shovelbum
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a creamy mocha head over black with garnet edged body. Decent head retention and lace. Aromas of roasted malt and a mild floral hop background. Mild sweetness with flavors of chocolate, nuts and roasted malt. Slightly burnt around the edges. Mild hop bitterness. Full-bodied. Low carbonation. Smooth mouthfeel with a drying finish.

Nothing int this brew really jumps out as especially extraordinary, but I don't have any complaints either. An all-around solid porter.

 477 characters

Photo of woodychandler
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This arrived with a foamy, tan/brown head over a glass containing a deep black colored liquid. I took in notes of chocolate and charcoal on the nose. The beer, itself, had lots of interesting flavors, although muted, going on. I noted chocolate, caramel, and coffee, but none in any great abundance, nor in any up front way. Not bad, but I wish that the flavors had been more pronounced.

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Photo of beergeek279
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served as a 6 oz. sample at ABC. The color was black, with a wispy head. The smell was a nice hoppiness. The taste was a strong coffee roastiness, with a dry hop presence. Mouthfeel was average. As for drinkability, could have a few of these.

A nice porter offering here. Nice roastiness and a good dry porter. Quite good, and certainly one that I would hope to have in the future.

 384 characters

Photo of simmons
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This porter over all is a great porter. This beer good enough and fulfilling that it has actually acted as my dinner there one night while I was there. The Pennypacker porter is nice and black with a nice tan long lasting head. The aroma isn’t as strong as some of their beers but it is pleasant and mild but as for the flavor this beer is full with good hop flavor and a tasty roasted taste to it. This beer is as seasonal beer running through out October.It was named after the governer of PA named Penneypacker, who helped create the capital building that stands now just a few blocks from their brewery and brew pub. Well done.

 632 characters

Photo of Maestro
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This porter is quite good. The head is a tan, bubbly collar that is sort of like a milkshake. The beer is almost black in color. The nose is very mild. The mouthfeel is good. Nice tingly carbonation accompanies the malty start. This beer does a nice job of mimmicking the traditional combination of old and new ale. Actually, it is reminiscent of a black and tan at times. The complexity is what makes this porter a standout. I would prefer more hops but all in all, this is a great porter. One of the few acceptable brews from Appalachian.

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Photo of Edwin
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Served up a very black tone with a tan head. Some lacing left over.

Smell: Roasted nuts and chocolate boquet.

Taste: Some caramel with a chocolatey and nutty finish. Not much else to say. A pretty basic Porter.

Mouthfeel: Smooth drinking. A little bitterness. Not much carbonation, which is expected off of the cask.

Drinkability: Good, smooth, easy to drink. Pretty low on the alcohol, so not too over-powering either.

Overall: A good offering, but I say stick with the Stout. More personality and better flavor.

 541 characters

Photo of stirgy
3.78/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served as part of a sampler tray at their brewery. Poured out a dark brown with some ruby red highlights coming through when held up to the light. The aroma held some roasted grains and some bittersweet chocolate and roasted coffee. The taste was light yet flavorful. Nice roastiness along with a decent bitterness. This seems like a smaller version of their Susquehanna stout. Very good, very drinkable.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The body is an opaque black with the exception of some clear, mahogany colored edges at the rim and base. The head is a short, creamy mass of light tan foam that holds well at first and leaves some nice rings of lace before dropping to an average collar. The nose delivers a dull roastiness with a touch of chocolate that alternates between being enticing and just take-it-or-leave-it. The light body slides across the tongue with a very fine and gently crisp carbonation that does just enough to awaken the taste buds. The flavor is rich with caramel maltiness, a burnt-bordering-on-acidic roastiness, a touch of floral hops, and some bittersweet chocolate that's backed by a solid bitterness. It finishes bone dry with some residual caramel and roastiness as well as some ghostly hops. Enjoyable, with a good level of drinkability.

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Photo of 99bottles
4.27/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow. Great. Had a pint of this at the brewpub with a shepard's pie. Criminals shouldn't get last meals like this. The porter was a beautiful deep brown topped by a solid inch head that lasted. The creaminess of the head was beautiful. The taste- exceptional. Coffee, walnut, earth, and chocolate. So smooth with wonderful mouthfeel. A great beer for the end of the year. I'd love to curl up with a novel, gaze out upon colored leaves, and sip a pint of this. Perhaps my favorite ABC beer, but I may be reminiscing. Definitely something to try if you're ever near central PA during the fall/winter. Absolutely a wonderful porter.

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Photo of psugrad98
4.62/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Excellent porter. Rich dark brown/black with creamy off white head. Small particles of yeast and goodness float around
Thick rich lace clings to the side of the glass. Signs of a good quality brew!!
Rich and malty with sweet dark coffee tones. Firm bitterness backs up beer and leads to a chocolate finish. Highly drinkable and not overpowering or too heavy.

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Pennypacker Porter from Appalachian Brewing Company
3.86 out of 5 based on 58 ratings.
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