Hoogstraten Poorter | Brouwerij Sterkens N.V.

143 Ratings
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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Ratings: 143 |  Reviews: 92
Photo of ThirdCoast
3.68/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

ST: 1 Pt 9.4 fl oz Nice bottle, with a resealable cab.

A: Nice dark color with a nice red tint. A 1/2 inch head that holds.

S: Slightly sweet, tart, light aroma.

T: Light taste, butter, tart, nothing like the aroma would hint to. Nice, a bit lighter than i would like, or think.

M: Smooth, light, easy to drink.

D: This is a nice brew for a newbie or some one with training wheels in the beer world.

Note: A decent brew, but not the best....not the worst either.

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Photo of stereosforgeeks
2.27/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance: Dark burgundy with mild large bubbles for head. No retention or lace.

Smell: Caramel, candy sugar, butter, a little yeast.

Taste: Nutty yeast and toffee with a chocolate backbone. This was definitely a bit flat by the time I got to it.

Drinkability: I need a fresh bottle. I can imagine this being good but the one I had definitely was not.

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Photo of jbsteiny
3.68/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Wow! My experience with this beer started off very differently than everyone else's, but then in the end I drew a lot of the same conclusions. I don't know if the bottle was just very shaken up or what, but it poured with two-three fingers of thick mountainous head, almost like an ice cream soda. Rosewood color. Looks great, and the head remained all the way to the bottom of the glass (if there'd been some lacing, this would have been a perfect score). Smells richly of malts and yeast, prunes and (didn't think of this at the time, but agree with the reviewer who wrote) butter. As everyone else said -- not like any other porter you've ever had -- more like an abbey brun. Tasted good, rich and sweet, and sips of the thick head provided a bitter yeasty counterpart to the malts. A big body that goes down smooth -- if I could find this beer at a more reasonable price, I'd buy it now and again (would be a nice winter warm-up), but as is, I think it's more of a one-timer. Very cool bottle -- is it made of stone?

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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 Commandogeraldo
3.42/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this beer the other evening, took it home as a sample from the distribution company. Nice pour, head didn't last though, still a very drinkable beer, made better by being free. Fairly rich flavor, very little bitterness, definitely a good one to go with a meal of meat and cheese or the like. Nothing fantastically special, and I know that the price tag will definitely deter me from purchasing it anytime in the future. Good stuff though

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Photo of allengarvin
3.29/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Top popped with no 'pop' at all. No carbonation left in the beer. I've had other Sterkens beers with little carbonation, but this had none. There's no head at all, just a flat brown beer. Pleasantly malty aroma though, with toffee notes. Flavor is mostly malt, caramel with a little coffee-like roast. Hops not detectable. Finish lingers with chocolate sweetness. Mouthfeel is...well, flat.

Sterkens should ditch the ceramic bottles. They just don't work well.

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Photo of brdc
2.94/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Nice dark beer in a beautiful jug, with a luscious tan head. And that is it.
A thin body, with faint smells of roasted malts, light bitter unremarkable taste that is fairly easy to drink but not exactly pleasant enough to justify a second bottle. I shared mine and that is it.

 277 characters

Photo of stouty1
3.33/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Looks say more than a thousand words, but in this case it's misleading.

A: Awesome brown jug type bottle with flip top cap. Malty brown and ruby red highlights with a 2 finger head. Poured into my Imperial pint glass.
S: Chocolate malts and more malts. Something fruity...cherry?
T: Nothing like a Porter I have had before. It is chocolatey with some coffee background but, that is it. Cannot taste any alcohol.
M: Weak. Very smooth with no bite what-so-ever. I can only even achieve carbonated fizz if I swish it around in my mouth before swallowing.
D: Easy to drink but why waste the time?

 599 characters

Photo of Morris729
3.5/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep mahogany color with a foamy and bubbly tan head that fades into a thin lace. Nose is sweet and sugary with some fainter notes of alcohol present as well. Taste begins with brown sugar and semi-dark chocolate followed by some lightly fruity yeast and some mildly spicy notes. Not sure I’d call this a porter, but I’m not sure what else I’d call it either.

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Photo of jameaterblues
3.41/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another sample from a wonderful distributor...
A-Dark brown/amber color with ruby and orange hints...1/3inch head of bubbly dark cream head that diminished quickly, with a lace that sticks to the glass allover throughout the entire beer. Great bottle.

S- Thick roasted malts....light chocolate... with a nutty herbal essence...big smell....but not so distinct.

T- Big roasted malts....light chocolate flavors...a very light coffee flavor, and light alcohol crispness..It almost seems light the alcohol and hop tastes combine.

M/D- Medium bodied, fairly high carbonation for a porter....smooth and easy to drink. I have not had very many belgian porters, but this is much lighter than most porters that I am used to....maybe almost a dark brown ale...its good, but not worth what it is priced in the store....this makes it slightly less drinkable.

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Photo of GClarkage
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

07/08/06- Purchased at Bevmo in San Mateo, CA.

Presentation- 750ml bottle, capped with an addition swingtop attached if you can't handle draining 25.4oz of 6% or so abv beer. No freshness dating, poured into my Stone RIS tulip.

Appearance- Medium brown, maybe fig colored. Large and creamy head rises to the top of the glass. Takes three fillings to get the whole bottle in. Lacing is nice and patchy.

Smell- Really not one that jumps out at your nose. More sweetness than I expected. Maybe a bit buttery. Almost like a nose of a Belgian Pale. Spices and maybe some powdered sugar to go along with a bit of malt.

Taste- Porter? My first sip and many after had an odd somewhat metallic taste. I was trying to pinpoint the taste when my wife tasted it and said "Yuk, liver and onions". I tasted it again and she was right on about the liver part. I really does have an odd animal flesh taste. I got used to it and sucked the rest down. Malty..a bit, sugary and sweet...more so. If you really get into th swishing of the liquid you can pick up some berry type flavors...maybe some kind of currant.

Mouthfeel- Fuller than would think by the abv. Medium carbonation level, somewhat creamy and smooth texture.

Drinkability- For a porter I would not buy again, but for a beer just at that, it's a possibility. Rather odd tastes, but pretty good at that. Interesting for sure.

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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.

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Photo of jwc215
2.64/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I split a bottle of this with a friend -
Poured a medium brown. It had some odd sediment floating around. The head was decent - it became a lasting lace after a short while. It was the lightest porter I've ever seen - didn't look like a porter.
The smell was of sweet caramel with some alcohol notes.
The taste wasn't terrible, but not very well-balanced. Two dimensional - caramel and water. Quite sweet. Not typical of a porter. Reminded me of a malty doppelbock. Some fruitness was evident as the drink progressed.
The mouthfeel was a bit sticky, but not overwhelming. Nothing bad, nothing outstanding - or even above average.
I have had numerous Baltic Porters, and I have to say that this is - while not terrible - certainly below average.
Other than to own the cool ceramic flip-top bottle, it is not worth the price when there are so many better porters out there and just as available (if not moreso.)
As a beer it is not terrible - but if you are in the mood for a porter - this is not the one to have - too caramel-sweet and lacks richness or the complex flavors of a porter.

 1,092 characters

Photo of Drew966
3.43/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A heavy pour from a ceramic 75cl bottle resulted in a very small head on a dark brown beer. Aroma is interesting, seemed a bit estery at first, now I'm getting figs, and maybe some chocolate notes. This beer is very low in carbonation. Doesn't really taste too much like a porter, more like a brown ale IMHO. Some raisin in the taste. Definitely interesting, but not compelling. Worth a try.

 391 characters

Photo of Jredner
3.58/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is mostly caramel malt that imparts slight raisin notes. Cloudy brown in color with a firm two finger thick head. Flavor is candy sugar and caramel malts. There is a raisin bread and sugar syrup flavor in the finish. It finishes pretty dry with only the malt as an aftertatse. It’s not a bad beer at all it just doesn’t have any range in the flavor.

 357 characters

Photo of DrJay
3.53/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear, dark brown/amber with light tan head composed of fine bubbles. Good head retention and very nice lacing that left rings around the glass. Light chocolate and raisin aroma with a bit of cola and slight funky cheesiness. Interesting. Plenty of malt sweetness with some chocolate, grainy malt and low bitterness. The finish is very short. Medium body and carbonation, good texture and a bit dry. It seems to be a little light on the dark malt for a porter, but it's very easy to drink and fairly interesting.

 512 characters

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!

 328 characters

3.63/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pilsner, had a translucent brown color with close to an inch of beige head. Lacing on the glass was medium, didnt stay for to long. It pretty good to me, a medium malty smell. Taste of coffee and caramel with dark fruits. The carbonation was light, they should add a little more bubbles to this one. It is really easy to drink and has a good aftertaste. I enjoyed this beer and the bottle that it comes in is nice, its reclosable which is nice if you dont want to drink all of it in one sitting. Overall I give it a good rating, definately wish it was a little cheaper, guess the bottle makes it more expensive, worth buying though.

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Photo of texashammer
3.7/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was an interesting beer. I still can't get over the idea of a porter (baltic no less) from Belgium. Didn't know what to expect at all.
It definitely showed signs of being a porter, with the roastiness and all, but the overwhelming characteristic I found was molasses. It was quite sweet but the roasted malts balanced some. No real hops to speak of. Then again, it was next to a big IPA at the time. (Poor planning?) Beautiful black with amber colors, very little head. Drank well, if a little sweet.

 506 characters

Photo of Zorro
2.45/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

From a 750 ml bottle.

Pours a clear brown beer with a little tan head.

Smell is mostly brown sugar and raisins. Black pepper and cherry scent ride on the alcohol fumes. Faint soy sauce odor.

Taste is mildly sweet with the light flavors of brown sugar, tobacco, smoke, and figs. An under flavored beer here it just isn't strong enough.

Very thin mouthfeel.

I guess I could finish this glass of this beer but I don't want to. There are 24 different beers in my refrigerator right now all of, which are more enjoyable than this. I can't recommend this beer at all.

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Photo of mgdeth
3.73/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - 750 ml ceramic/stoneware bottle. Brown color, decent head

Smell - Malty sweetness is prominent. No hop aroma to speak of.

Taste - Roasty and toffee-like, but apparently not the freshest it could be. Bittness balances out the malt, so the beer is smooth and not cloying.

Mouthfeel - Not particularly robust, but not a slouch either. This is one of those beers that rides the fence, style-wise. Good body, but not really thick.

Drinkability - Not bad. I would have another. No feshness date can be a bad thing.

Comments - Never underestimate the power of importation to wreak havoc on a beer. Still, this beer is worth a try.

 651 characters

Photo of tavernjef
3.11/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Ruby rust, small bubbly head of dusty yellowed foam comes to surface as it glugs its way out of the tall ceramic jug. Sticky thin lacing coats well as it wavers.

Aroma is faint of a starfruit sweetness and yellow raisiny tang.

Flavor is a little strange at first but grows on ya after awhile, but also gets boring and tedoius and makes it hard to continue any kind of consumption. Mildly tangy and sweet with a soft toffee and sugar cookie plainness. Some notions of cocoa dust the finish with a slight drying late along with a bit of sugar and a touch of roast. It's like drinking a really subpar, under baked sugar cookie.

Feel is quick and softly carbonated in most areas, some weird, off heavy spots and slight chalk textures. Lighter medium body overall with a slight dry finish.

This is the pinnacle of average for the style. OK, but no keeper.

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Photo of mschofield
3.38/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear dark red, topped with a one finger tan head, leaves wide sticky webs of lacing.
Strong fruity aroma, strawberry, cherry and cocoa.
Fruit juice, strawberry, cocoa, pizza dough, earthy taste. Some hops but they're mainly in the aftertaste and don't contribute much to the aroma or taste.

 301 characters

Photo of dauss
3.67/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 25.9 fl. oz. opaque brown ceramic bottle, with swing top and golden cap. No freshness date.

Appearance: Lightest color Baltic porter I've ever seen. Clear ruby copper. Very small off white head with a hard pour.

Smell: Rich malty sweetness, alcohol easily detected. dark fruits, plums, good aroma.

Taste: Sweet lightly roasted malt. Dark fruits, finishes dry with a very slight astringency and alcohol aroma.

Notes: Not very porter-ish for a Baltic porter. It's lacking the roastyness. Also the body is very thin. There are some flaws, but good flavor nonetheless.

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Photo of kbub6f
3.82/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Head is noisy, fizzy, and light tan. Second pour head is fluffy, still and dense. The beer is a rich, clear, dark walnut with ruby highlights. There are a few swoops of lacing. Gorgeous nose: sweet, bready toffee. Sweet toffee and chocolate up front. A thick, buttery, malt middle. A strange, buttery, non-sweet fruit in the finish. Really, not sweet at all, but fruity. Also: alcohol and spice. This beer starts great, but finishes a little disappointing. Still, good, interesting.

 482 characters

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