Portage Porter
New Belgium Brewing Company

Portage PorterPortage Porter
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American Porter
3.91 | pDev: 9.21%
New Belgium Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Portage PorterPortage Porter
Reviews: 110 | Ratings: 579 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of GuyFawkes
3.67/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

"Best by 5/10/15"; drank 1/26/15 @ the Yarchives.

Brown/black appearance.

Khaki head; frothy lace.

Peanut butter, fresh earth & mild chocolate nose.

Medium mouthfeel.

Mild roasted coffee & mild peanut flavors; a faint citrus bite on the finish.

Very mild, then, but inoffensive & quaffable.

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Photo of GarrettB
3.2/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.25

April 4th, 2015 - Seasonal new, and inviting, New Belgium's Portage promises a sporty afternoon in boat shoes and sea spray. As such, I tend to think of lighter beers, like pilsners. But this is a surprisingly dark and malty mixture, with nice chocolate touches on the smell, and some raspberry edges for fruity shading. The carbonation is nice too, delivering a tasty tang, but the flavor overall seems just a little shallow. But what flavor there is includes a good malty character and a low-key aftertaste.

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This was poured into a pint glass. A nice sticky one finger white to off white foamy and rocky looking head appeared settled super nicely in little hills. A nice looking foamy clingy lacing graces the sides of the glass. The smell had a big sweet to roasty chocolate with a substantial amount of roasted coffee bean assisting in the balance. The taste was a nice sweet moderately balanced roasty coffee/cocoa. It becomes slightly sticky in the aftertaste and lends a subtle sweet smooth yet dry finish. On the palate, this one sat about a medium on the body with a fairly decent sessionability about it. I really like how sweet and roasty smooth it rolls across my tongue. Overall, hey New Belgium, good job, I’d have this one again.

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Photo of Libeertarian
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Deep red-hued dark brown, mostly clear but light comes through very dim. Head is a chunky, foamy, well-retaining mound of golden brown. Thick, sticky lacing. In short, this beer looks similar to a root beer. Aromas of roasted and sweet malts, bread, toast, milk chocolate, even slight meatiness. Roasty, smokey on the palate, with, again, milk chocolate, as well as creamed coffee, and herbal or leafy, almost even spicy hop presence barely noticeable past the crescendoing flavor of smoke. Mild bitterness throughout from both smoke and hops, to balance out sweeter qualities. Light tobacco but also peppercorn with retro-olfaction. Medium-bodied, perfect consistency and viscosity for the style, sparse prickles mixed in with the abundant but not heavy, rather filmy suds. Moderate in smoothness, dryness (for how sweet the body is), and astringency. Little warmth to speak of. Solid American Porter.

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Photo of Bluegrass49
3.93/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into an ale glass. Rich brown color with a rather subtle head with decent lacing. Very smooth and malty tasting with a slight lingering aftertaste allowing you to savor the flavor. Very good for a reasonable price.

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Photo of Greg_Nall
4.24/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Purchased February 15 and opened September 8, 2015

Appearance, poured 1/2 inch of medium tan head lasting a couple minutes, with lacing lasting halfway through the glass

Aroma, a roasted high malt and low noble hops greeted you with a pleasant and inviting smell.

Flavor, roasted malts imposed an almost coffee flavor while the reduced hop level balanced it out, while the intensity was high the malts dominating the hops moving nice smoothness, ending with a pleasant malty taste.

Overall, a very enjoyable experience, plan on have some on hand through out the year.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Robust, Roasty, Acrid, Bitter

Pitch black with light coffee head and solid lacing. Nose is full of roastiness, coffee, black tea, baker's chocolate, and smoky suggestions. Medium bodied with a firm, creamy palate. More roastiness on the tongue with a good dose of acridness that's balanced by a matly caramel sweetness, toastiness, faint nuttiness, and soft vanilla undertones. Dry, semi-stringent, bitter finish. Outstanding.

STYLE: American Porter | ABV: 6% | AVAILABILITY: Winter

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine issue #97 (FEB 2015)

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Photo of BigDaddyWarbuxx
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A nice roast aroma. A relatively good flavor, but it's not as full-bodied as I was hoping, with a mild coffee flavor. A good drinkable porter, but nothing amazing.

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Photo of SD-Alefan
4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours an opaque brown with a creamy tan head that leaves lacing all down the glass.
The aroma is chocolate and malty with hints of acidic fruitiness.
Really tasty. Nice dark chocolate and burnt char bitterness with a little acidic bite and hints of dark fruit. As it warms, I also pick up a slight smokiness.
Mouthfeel is medium and smooth.
This is a fine Porter, perhaps closer to a British than American in style. Well done!

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Photo of Jeffreysan
4.45/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, poured into a goblet

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, completely opaque, pitch-black color, with a finger of white-colored head that quickly dissolved away into a thin lacing of foam that partially covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Very aromatic with lots of strong, rich, earthy aromas of roasted malt, imparting notes of freshly toasted dark bread, a touch of smoke and notes of freshly brewed coffee. There is also lots of brown sugar and dark molasses. Smells awesome!

Taste: Delicious!! Strong, rich, earthy flavors of bready roasted malt up front, imparting flavors of dark bread, and hits of smoke and freshly brewed coffee, but thankfully, none of the coffee-like bitterness. There is quite a bit of caramel and brown sugar-like sweetness, as well as hints of dark chocolate.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied to slightly chewy and nicely effervescent as there is quite a bit of carbonation to tickle the taste buds. With an ABV of 6.0%, there is no alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is a damn great porter! Rich, earthy, complex, with tons of roasted malt, brown sugar-like sweetness, a touch of smoke and a touch of coffee, without any of the coffee-like bitterness, all wrapped up in a delicious quaff! Highly recommended!

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Photo of jmasher85
3.87/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I'd almost call this a British style porter, with the slightly burnt toffee smell and bitter finish. Woody, rich, and a nice texture make this a solid, if unremarkable porter.

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Photo of BrownNut
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This beer is all about that roast. And that's a particular craving. If you've got that itch, this'll scratch it. Dark roast coffee, ash, these are some similar notes. There's a bit of dark chocolate. At the end you've got that dryish feeling on your tongue like after you eat really dark chocolate.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.67/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I enjoyed this bottle chilled in a stout glass.

The color is black with thick medium beige head with 2 fingers depth with thin lace film with fine bead and very good retention. The smell is malty with lots of caramel with slight toasted aroma w/ mild dried fruit in the yeast aroma. The feel is medium bodied with nicely roasted moderately carbonated with mostly dry finish and mild sweetness mid palate with everything in its right place.

The taste is mild with toasted flavor and subtle spice with woody element in the taste with more french roast coffee-type husky earthy roasted barley with a light herbal flavor in the finish. Overall I enjoyed this, pretty decent porter with nice balance just has more roasted barley in the flavor than I prefer, worth trying

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Photo of tylerstravis
4.19/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

If this had a different brewer on the label it would be rated much higher. This is what a Porter should taste like. If this had a creamy feel it would always be in my fridge.

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Photo of jngrizzaffi
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a pitch black with a 2 finger width brown foamy head. Head retention and lacing are both pretty good. Has kind of a watered down chocolate, dark malty aroma. Roasted malty taste with a nice hoppy bite at the end. It kind of gets lost there. May have some slight chocolate and raisin at the end. More of a java aftertaste. It needs more umph at the beginning. Taste is still a little watered down. Not bad, but not even close to other porters I have had.

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Photo of TheCondor
3.77/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Side poured from the 12oz bottle into a Sam Adams glass. Picked oout of a mix and match sixer.

Appearance - Pours a deep brown, almost black, with hints of ruby red in the lighting. Very little light penetration. Small half finger head dissipates fairly quickly but leaves a bit of lacing. The bottle art and packaging are ok.

Smell - A little on the weak side, honestly. Standard porter fare of roasted malts, chocolate, cocoa, coffee, and a bit of sweetness, but nothing magnificent or overpowering.

Taste - A bit subdued, more subtle, much like the nose. Many of the same flavors detected in the nose are present on the palate, with a roasty overtone.

Mouthfeel - A bit thin for my liking. I like porters to be thick and chewy, this one was a bit on the watery side. Nothing horrible or unbearable, but just not very thick.

Overall - This is a decent beer, don't get me wrong. However, it seems there is a little bit of work that could be done to it to take it from a decent beer to a great beer. It was good but forgettable, but it is worth a try for sure.

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Photo of josiahschlender
3.49/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This ale pours pretty dark brown, with just slightly red highlights around the edges where light attempts to penetrate. Almost no clarity, and the head fades pretty quickly.

On the cold side out of the fridge, the nose is scant. With some effort I detect charred malts and something earthy that might be hops, but that might just be me searching too.

Fortunately this beer has more flavor than smell. Straightforward burned malt and black coffee flavors with earthy hops at the end is what I notice. Low sweetness is also another characteristic, less so than most porters in my estimation. Feel is dry with low carbonation and a short finish. The low complexity, low sweetness and quick finish of this porter probably makes it a more versatile porter than most to pair with food. It's not going to conflict or overwhelm many dishes or hang around too long to take another bite.

Overall, not a bad porter, but I tend to give higher ratings to bigger, bolder and more memorable beers. Pick this one up if you're looking for a more versatile dark beer to drink with dinner, or you like the dry feeling, low sweetness type of drink that bears some resemblance to an Irish stout.

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Photo of Myotus
4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours black with a large, copper head (a fingers-width in height). Has strong aromas of roasted malts and coffee, mild aromas of chocolate and hops. Initial taste is strong with roasted malts and coffee combined with mild chocolate flavors. Mild hop flavors soon follow then increase in flavor on the palate to finish out the final taste. Seems like a pretty generic American porter, which isn't a bad label. Definitely going to be buying a six pack in the future for my relaxing days.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.89/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a finger of tan head on a black body.
The aroma is roasted malt, cocoa and toast.
The taste is thin sweetness at first, then dark chocolate bitterness middle to end. A nice short and good profile.
The texture is medium.
This a balanced and flavorful porter.

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Photo of breakingbland
3.91/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

On tap served in a pint glass.

A very flavorful porter: deep and rich with coffee and chocolate contributions that are nicely balanced. The hops additions are also well-balanced. Only the body is a disappointment: seems a bit thin (and the carbonation was a bit light, but this could have been the fault of the tap setup). But overall, I liked it and would definitely get it again. It's an easy one to drink.

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Photo of anon
3.89/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black, no light penetration whatsoever. Half inch dark brown head that dissipates quickly. Very light lacing throughout.

Smell is roast-forward, dark chocolate, coffee. Tastes much the same, save for a slight touch of vanilla. Exactly what a porter should be. Light bodied and easy to drink.

Nothing groundbreaking overall, but this is a very solid brew and one that is very easily session able. Would have again.

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Photo of arizcards
4.21/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked up a single the first of February for $1.79. Enjoy by 10May15.

Beer poured brown with a nice thick and rich head that is long lasting and leaving lacing behind.

Nose is chocolaty and roasty.

Taste is very well balanced. The chocolate dominates the malt bill with a kiss of roastiness. The hop are sufficient enough to keep the sweetness at bay and provide a little zing in the end. Flavors meld very well.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and very smooth for a porter.

Overall this is a nice surprise from New Belgium. This is in the same ballpark as Cutthroat Porter from Odell and Deschutes Black Butte Porter. I recommend and will look to get a full sixer next year when it is fresh.

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Photo of barczar
3.92/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma is slightly sweet, deeply toasted, and nutty, with a solid chocolate presence that becomes roasty and coffee-like.

Flavor is roast dominant, with an initial chocolate sweetness, finishing a bit bitter and fairly roasty at the finish. Toasted, nutty malt supports throughout, and lingers into the aftertaste, reminiscent of cereal...cheerios.

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Photo of UrbanCaveman
3.81/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle, poured into a shaker pint at room temperature.

Appearance: Pours an impenetrable black, and forms a massively thick head of ecru foam that lasts and lasts. Some very faint, tiny glimmers of dark brown can be seen at the very bottom edge of the glass. Good, sticky lacing is present.

Smell: Chocolatey dark roast swells out of the glass, joined by subtle hints of light coffee.

Taste: Blackened grains, baker's chocolate, and light-roast coffee all swirl together, forming a solid porter flavor profile. There's also a vaguely floral, vaguely herbal tinge that overlays the entire tasting process for me, and lingers on a while as the aftertaste. This is a drawback, to me.

Mouthfeel: As is the way of most beers billed as a porter, this leans towards the watery side, thin bodied and drinkable, with a carbonation level notable only for the way it does not stand out as too present or too flat.

Overall: A solid porter, though the detectable hop presence does skew it slightly downwards for me. I live in the heart of Edmund Fitzgerald distribution territory, so I don't see myself buying this beer when the Ed Fitz is right next to it at the same price point. I wouldn't turn my nose up at this beer if offered, however.

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Photo of TheMarkE
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Deep dark brown with a quickly disappearing head of foam and decent lacing.

Smell: Coffee, toffee, and other roasted malts.

Taste: Chocolate, coffee, and other roasted malts.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a bitter coffee finish.

The Verdict: Good beer. Straight forward brew with plenty of malty goodness. A good solid porter from New Belgium.

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Portage Porter from New Belgium Brewing Company
Beer rating: 88 out of 100 with 579 ratings