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Hoogstraten Poorter | Brouwerij Sterkens N.V.

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92 Reviews
Hoogstraten PoorterHoogstraten Poorter

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Sterkens N.V.

Style: Baltic Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-24-2000

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Reviews: 92 | Ratings: 143
Photo of phenomenologian
4.57/5  rDev +26.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

this comes in a growler bottle that has that top that lies aside, with a regular bottle cap that seals it. Its a thick ceramic bottle. This beer is very very pricey. 17 dollars.

some smoke comes out. upon pouring a rather large tan head forms. three fingers. It retains very well. It also laces a bit. Body is translucent and is nowhere near as dark as most porters. You can see a bit of bubbles rise to the top. The color of the body is darker brownish. Looks nice.

the smell is of yeast and malts and of roasted tones. It has a nice sweet overall smell with maybe molasses or other sweeter flavors.

The taste is not as strong but is still nice with darker roasted malts as the bigger taste there. there is also taste defintely of molasses and yeast. Really nice taste that accompanies the smell and feel.

The feel is not as thick as the smell and taste would point to. It feels very thin with some carbonation. This is good in my opinion as the flavors are allowed to go down awesomely even though its a porter with lots of flavor.

Overall, maybe not worth the price, but still a very very very good porter to try even if you don't like most porters are this one is much lighter and thinner than most porters you see. Give it a try even if you like pale ales.

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Photo of Maudite
4.3/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I'm quite surprised when reading these other reviews... Although quite unlike most commercial Baltic Porters, this beer is exactly true to form of an old world, English porter, which is all a Baltic porter is. According to BJCP guidelines, this style has an ABV of 5.5%-9.5%, and that the appearance should be "...dark reddish copper to opaque dark brown (not black). Thick, persistent tan-colored head. Clear, although darker versions can be opaque...."

A- A nice, brown ale colored Poorter. Some ruby hues, and some darker notes lacing in and out from the specialty malts. Good, strong, off white-tan head that was built to last. Some decent, but not amazing lacing (less sticky than it appears). Definitely a pleasant sight over-all.

S- A strong malt aroma, a bit toffee-like, with small notes of roastiness and caramel that almost leans to a buttery diacetyl, which, although considered an off flavor, I find to be quite pleasant in this nose. A bit of dark cocoa, no hops, and very minute esthers of plum, perhaps currant that barely escape through the roasty dark chocolate.

T- Quite delicious. Much the way you would expect an original 17th century porter to taste, a bit acidic (not quite lactic, but nearly...), a strong grainy malt flavor, sweet, strong caramel notes, some butterscotch diacetyl interwoven with the deep chocolate malt taste that comes up strong toward the end. A definite nuttiness, and roastiness, but no malt bitterness, the sweet malt flavors are predominent here. No prominent hop flavor, though a slight spice is present on the finish.

M- From the appearance an the taste, I expected more for my tongue. Doesn't coat as I expected, drinks more like a lower gravity home-brewed porter, a bit thin... No bitterness on the tongue from neither malts nor hops; the sugars don't coat as much as they taste like they will, and none of the flavors except the nuttiness and a dab of chocolate stay on the palate for long. My tongue was happy, but my mouth was let down...

D- If it weren't so costly, this would be the only porter I would ever drink again. I highly recommend reading Classic Beer Styles "Mild Ale" by David Sutula, and then enjoying one of these. You'll have a more defined understanding of how a real porter, a pint of plain, should taste.

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Photo of ybnorml
4.2/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A dark brown beer with deep ruby highlights. Has a big foamy beige head, but not much lace. The aroma is spicey and sweet with dried fruit backbone. The flavor profile is pretty much that of a Baltic porter but with a spicey Belgian style twist. Hints of cinnamon and clove in the background. Light and smooth in the mouthfeel with a nice prickly carbonation. A tasty treat that I have been waiting years to try (I picked up the glass for this about 3 years ago).

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Photo of bannockburn
4.17/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Truth be told, I purchased this beer on a whim, for the bottle alone. I was amazingly surprised and pleased with the contents. A heavy, chocolate nose greeted me, while the lingering taste spoke more of maple fading to a light hoppy finish. Truly a delight to drink, I'll be buying more...for the contents this time. Cheers aye!

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Photo of shbobdb
4.13/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 5

A nice, classic porter. It pours a nice tawny, hardcore oldschool -- hell yeah! The smell is dominated by plum. The taste very much follows in that suit -- deskinned plum, grains, chocolate, a pinch of an estery-alcoholic finish, I wanna say 'pear and peach'. The mouthfeel is incredibly thin. It goes down easily enough, but I'd like for there to be something more to the beer, you know? That said, it does go down smooth.

A nice, classic English tawny porter. I don't know why it is labeled as a "baltic porter" but whatever. The beer itself is very, very nice. The only problems I have with it are its mess finish and its thinness. However, these are complimentary problems, since the thinness allows for incredibly drinkability so the beer disappears quite quickly with no need to let the aftertaste linger. I've had the beer open for less than 15 minutes, and I am 90% done with it. Man, if I worked as a porter, I could see this beer really hitting the spot after a hard day.

A touch expensive for what you are getting, but a damned fine beer nevertheless.

 1,064 characters

Photo of BeerSox
4.13/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

.75L (750ml for those who didn't graduate 4th grade) ceramic swingtop bottle into pint glass.

Deep mohogany hue with a huge frothy light tan head that lasts for a long time. The cap is tall and frothy. Solid ringed lacing.

Fruity and sweet with a strong diacetyl aroma.

Very smooth malts have a sweet characteristic to it, rather than a dark malty bitterness. Strong notes of butter come through. Medium bodied with good carbonation. The finish is somewhat light with lingering sweetness.

This is barely a porter, and probably only classified as such because it says PORTER on the label. There is not one characteristic in this beer that says its a porter. However, this one is a new category. An English Porter has a strong malt presence, an American Porter has a strong hop presence, and now a Belgian Porter has a strong yeast presence. The amount of diacetyl (a yeast byproduct) is very prevalent. There is also a fruity characteristic that is similar to the one found in Belgian Ales. If you're looking for something traditional, you may want to try something else. But if you're looking for something new, this is right up your alley.

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Photo of jdhilt
4.13/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours with a two-finger light tan head that fades slowly leaving a good lace. Deep red/amber color. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Nose is malty. Starts with a roasted hazelnut sweetness and finishes smooth with no bitter aftertaste or hints of alcohol. A very good porter, quite different from typical American porters - Stone, Heavyweight, Redhook etc. 750ml bottle for $10.99 at Hoosick St Discount Bev. Troy, NY.

 423 characters

Photo of Irie
4.13/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

25oz hinge top.
Pours with a wild off-white head with great retention. Dark thick amber body with a lot of bubbles.
Great smooth body that's light on the tongue without the carbonated bite I expected. Great feel and awesome finish.
This beer does a great job with a malty balance and a delicious finish.
Easy to drink and enjoyable as hell.

 340 characters

Photo of hotstuff
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Not your typical Porter as I have experienced them to be. This Porter was much to my liking as I like a very smooth beer that goes down easy with no bitterness or sharp aftertaste. This beer poured a small tan head with a cloudy body and a brown hue. There was good lacing with this beer. The mouthfeel was smooth.

 314 characters

Photo of acrawf6
4.09/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a dark clear brown amber. small tan head rises, but really not much of one.

Smell. malty and aged plum is what i get. slight port smell. quite nice and complex

Taste. It is quite roasty and has a distinct smokey taste, almost like a rauchbier (sp?). nice dry malt taste that i like, but the taste is not as complex as the aroma would appear. Small fruit taste, dried plum, but subtle.

Mouthfeel. Decent, medium body, decent carbonation, decent balance.

Overall, i'm impressed with this beer. I had concerns buying it at only $7 with this heavy ceramic bottle, and with other reviews, but i'm really liking this smokey flavor right now.

 657 characters

Photo of Brianmerrilyn
4.08/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from Ceramic bottle from McLean Ave Beer Dist in Yonkers.

A: Noisy and fizzy with legs that remain stuck on side of glass. Head actually grows so pour with care. Dark ruby/mahogany highligts over rich body.

S: Bread and toffee and perhaps some dark chocolate.

T: Strong malt w/hops and buttery grape wine finish.

M: Smooth malty flowers

D: First time Belgian porter, will have to revisit, not impressed.

 417 characters

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.04/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 1 pint 9.4 oz ceramic flip-top jar. Named a freeman Porter from Hoogstraten ... brewed according to the purity law of 1516. Huh, hello this a beer brewed in Belgium who cares about the purity law. No freshness date.

Appearance: Tawny burgundy with an off-white whisp, ringed lace.

Smell: Caramel, butter, and a distinct date sweetness.

Taste: Rounded biting hop twang bitterness and carbonation with a silky malty mouth feel. Fruity earthy date essence with a semi steely sweet caramel flavour. Faint toffee like diacetyl melds with a nutty yeast character. Hints of carob in the drying finish.

Notes: Sip and savour brew, a highly drinkable Belgian brewed ale that shows some alcoholic girth so beware.

 729 characters

Photo of TheDM
4.02/5  rDev +11%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This brew poured a small head of light brown fine to medium bubbles which left a nice lacing as it receded. It has a cloudy brown body with fine particulate. It has a smooth malty flavor but is a little weak for a porter. Very smooth though and I found myself liking the flavor and the taste, just hard to call it a porter.

 323 characters

Photo of northaustin
3.99/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

poured into a schnifter. a dark black with a very generous head (three to four fingers) with small amount of lacing.

smell is very grainy and fresh and one of the better aspects of the beer

taste is not as potent as the smell would make it seem and is a little bland for a baltic porter. however the taste is fairly noticeable and is much more flavorful than the "average" porter.

it goes down smooth but is a little overcarbonated for me, not as thick as most baltic porters but certainly makes up for it in smell and nice taste. an absolute must for porter fans

 566 characters

Photo of ADR
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An interesting beer, may well be in a Porter style as indicated by the bottle (crock). Clear darker ruby color, small head but pretty dense and creamy. Doesn't last a real long time. Yeasty and sharp citrus aromas. Nice mouthfeel, malt dominates flavor and is in the brown-sugar and caramel range. A little hoppy squeeze, slightly tangeriney, and helped by moderate carbonation. Not hugely complex, could use a little more body but a unique brew from Belgium. The thick, light brown, swing-top crock rocks!

 513 characters

Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark brown, reddish hues. Frothy, beige head. Sticky lacing.

S - Cocoa powder, semi-sweet chocolate. Roasty, malty, mineral water.

T - A complex mixture of nutty, bitter citrus pith, spices, apple skin and minerals. This beer has a very interesting flavor profile, with lots of yeasty notes. Certainly not a typical porter flavor.

M - Medium bodied, effervescent, wet feel, clean finish.

O - Not what you would expect from a porter. The Belgian yeast makes for a surprising palate.

 490 characters

Photo of AlpacaAlpaca
3.95/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Nearly black as night, with a quickly dissapating beige cream head.

S: There's more upfront sweetness to the smell than there is in the taste. From the smell I was expecting something that would suit a dessert nicely. Elements of Guinness-style smoothness under the sweetness, with just a small hint of more assertive flavors (almond, hop, raisin).

T: Nutty, thick, slightly toasty, and savory, with a lingering background sweetness. Not the dessert drink I'd anticipated. It's bite was softened by it's creaminess, but the bite was still present and appreciated. In terms of ABV, I would have assumed it was higher (around 8, rather than 6). The taste was reminiscent of some other, better beers (Like Delirium Nocturnum), which could have lessened my opinionof it. Despite that, it was very solid and very enjoyable. Better than average, definitely.

M: Thick, but appropriately so, considering. The sweet aftertaste made a gradual exit, but did not overstay its welcome as is often the case.

O: The price discourages regular purchases, but besides that point this beer is very good. Not a must-buy, since there are cheaper beers that I'd argue do it better, but it's well worth a shot.

 1,194 characters

Photo of ncsutton
3.92/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Serving - Growler

A - Very dark with a nice head that retains for a nice period of time, lacing

S - A scent of roasted malts, and some dark fruit, seems like raisin

T - Tastes like it smells, however it's not quite as strong as I would have thought, nice roasted malt going with raisin and apricot, some chocolate after tones

M - somewhat light weight for what I was expecting, moderate carbonation

O - Overall not too bad, not what I was expecting for a Baltic Porter, but it's still a good brew, I thought the bottle looked cool and the beer behind it justified my purchase

 581 characters

Photo of beveritt
3.91/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Thanks for DoctorDog for this random big ass bottle of beer. Poured from a 75cl earthenware bottle into a standard pint glass. Label depicts a very tall gentleman, grasping a mug of beer and holding the tall of a church or government building. Very little description. Some printing on the back: 21/06/12B12:21. I hope this thing isn't from 2006!

Appearance: Pours with a massive 4 finger head, partially because the unusual shape of the bottle prevents a smooth pour. The beer slowly "glugs" out. This very slowly falls to a still impressive 1 finger of head, leaving behind some lacing. The lacing is even better as you drink, with big billowy rings developing. The beer itself is a dark mahogany and perfectly clear with a fair amount of activity.

Smell: Not much here, some hints of a sweet malt, but all in all, not too aromatic.

Taste: Smooth, semi sweet malt upfront, with undertones of toffee, caramel, and a hint of smokiness. Lingering malty sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation level is higher than average, seems reminiscent of a Belgian ale. Body is good.

Drinkability: This is very good, and with a wine bottle size serving left to consume, that is a good thing. Easy to drink and very malty, just like I like beer. Would I seek it out again? Probably not. The serving size is a little too restrictive.

 1,333 characters

Photo of rousee
3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a murky mahogany maple syrupy color amber brown and forms a 1/2 finger cap quickly --no real settling --it remains the same: frothy, bubbly and yeasty. Leaves an intricate lace on the goblet.
Smell is malty and nutty with some flowers and grain scents coming through also. - just what I want except it is a little flat.
Taste is strong malt, hops, and nuts with some maple or caramel sweetness on the middle and a grape/ wine-like finish. Finishes fairly dry with some sweetness remaining.
Mouthfeel is smooth and malty/flowery. Reminds me of a dry apple also.The drinkability is truly hard to measure.
This is a Belgian porter ?

 641 characters

Photo of WesWes
3.88/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a translucent dark brown color with a frothy off-white head. The aroma is decent. It has a malty/roasted barley scent that is very pleasant. It has a sweet aroma. The taste is good. It is a light tasting dark beer with malt character and a fruity yeast finish. The mouthfeel is good. It is a medium bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a fine porter style Belgian ale. I think I'll have another.

 416 characters

Photo of BevMoAndrew
3.87/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a wine glass right out of the fridge. (Only glass available.)
the hoogstraten poorter pours a dark brown a the glass with a creamy white froth. Amazing aromas of black cherries, black raspberries, cassis, caramel, belgian waffle, roasted nuts, some baking spices, and belgian yeast that follows through on the palate. The beer has a medium light body, creamy carbonation, & long finish. There is a definite sweetness to this beer, however the beer dries the palate on the finish (not bitter, just dry). Overall, I really liked this beer & would love to drink it again, but, unfortunately, this beer is way over valued at $10 a bottle. Because of the cost, this beer is Not Recommended....unless you have a ton of extra cash burning a hole in your pocket.

 766 characters

Photo of avalon07
3.85/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: When poured from a bottle to a pint glass, this beer had a brownish color and a thick texture. There was a big amount of long-lasting head and good lacing.

S: Fruits dominate the aroma, but malt and some hops are there as well.

T: Not what I expected from a Baltic porter, but pretty good. Apples, raisins, malt and hops make for a decent flavor.

M: There was a pretty good amount of carbonation and a smooth finish with this beer. This is a full-bodied beer.

D: This is a pretty tasty beer, though not what I expected from the style. One of the only problems with this brew is that it seems to lose its punch the longer you drink it. Not a bad beer, though.

 665 characters

Photo of kaelingirl
3.85/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

25.4oz ceramic bottle poured into mug.
Tawny amber red with a thick tan head that settles slowly and leaves a chunky sort of lace.
Caramel slightly metallic aroma.Sweet toasty buttery again sort of metalic flavor with a jolt of alcohol at the end.
Moderate carbonation, fairly smooth. Pretty tasty.

 298 characters

Photo of Gusler
3.83/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The pour a cloudless sanguineous color, the head slight, and the lace patchy. The nose is mostly malt, fresh and clean smelling with the start thickly malt, lightly sweet and the top middling in its mouth feel. Finish is penetratingly acidic, the hops toothsome, also a bit vinous and lightly tart with the aftertaste exquisitely dry and long lasting. Different front the run of the mill porters, and the 6.5% ABV adds a bit of warmth to the tummy, well worth a sample, as a change of pace from the American Style Porters.

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Hoogstraten Poorter from Brouwerij Sterkens N.V.
3.62 out of 5 based on 143 ratings.
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