Narragansett Porter | Narragansett Brewing Co.

269 Ratings
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Narragansett PorterNarragansett Porter

Brewed by:
Narragansett Brewing Co.
Rhode Island, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
It is brewed with chinook hops for bitterness, simcoe hops for aroma, black malt, pale malt, chocolate malt, munich malt, crystal malt, roasted barley, and ale yeast, giving it an imperial taste.

28 IBU

Added by TheManiacalOne on 01-01-2007

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Ratings: 269 |  Reviews: 133
Photo of Chaz
3.43/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark cola-brown in color, topped with two-fingered darker tan head which is densely-packed (fine, tight little bubbles) and which looks a little bit like whipped cream on the top of a dessert. Nice first impression. Average lacing, and there's a little ring of foamy-head left around the glass as this drops.

Nose offers notes of roast malt, light vanilla, and even lighter caramel. It's an odd impression to have, but from the looks of this one I'm suspecting it will be sweet, but there's a lightly-tangy aspect (citrusy hops?) in the nose and a touch of yeast.

Sweetish with notes of roast/slightly-smokey malt on the first sip. Anise notes are fairly prominent along with a caramel/molasses and that light vanilla -- pretty decent! Bitterness is better than I'd expected, and the hop use is interesting, being partly-bitter and partly aromatic/citrusy with the feel of an West Coast / American porter. Bitterness really lingers nicely here, especially as this warms, imparting a lasting, biitersweet impression.

With an ABV of 7% this should be drinking bigger than it is, so beware that it might sneak up on you after a couple . . . it has all the hallmarks of a 'sessionable' beer!

Fairly light-bodied and sprightly on the tongue, but coats the palate and offers a fairly smooth and creamy mouthfeel.

A pretty good American-style Porter overall, an I'd probably pick it up fairly regularly if it was readily available to me -- a big THANK YOU goes out to Dr. Woody Chandler for the opportunity to try this one as a single.

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Photo of woosterbill
3.4/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

16oz can into a Duvel tulip.

A: Carbonation explodes upward right away, filling the tulip 2/3 with frothy light-brown foam and 1/3 with opaque black liquid. Retention and lacing are both pretty spectacular, but this is definitely a bit over the top for the style.

S: Thin, sharp aroma of husky grains and chocolate. Slightly metallic, but not too bad overall - I really like the prevalence of the dark chocolate notes.

T: Sweet, malty, and chocolatey. Light coffee roast, and a bit of bitterness and alcohol on the finish. It's somehow both thin and too strong, but at least the flavors are appropriate for the style. It does improve markedly as it warms, with some milk chocolate and molasses sweetness helping to add some heft and mask the booze that dominated the finish at first.

M: Overcarbonated at first, thick and sticky toward the end. Not great.

O: Not a complete failure of a beer (like I consider the Narragansett Lager to be), but nor is it good (like their Summer). It's impressive how affordable this beer is (especially considering its substantial ABV), but then again it tastes just as expensive as it is.


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Photo of mikesgroove
3.6/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark brown with a small tan head which faded leaving behind a nice thin film of lace on the top and long sticky strands down the glass. Smell was a tad light, but came through more as it warmed. Roasted malts, caramel, perhaps a touch of coffee were present. Maybe even a hazelnut as it warmed. Taste was great. First off the feel was silky smooth, almost shake like with perfect carbonation that just floated in your mouth. Smooth feel gave way to a full taste, lots of roasted malts and caramel, slight burnt coffee in the back and a dry hop like finish.

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Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.36/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16oz can purchased at McKinnon's in Salem, NH. Pours an opaque black body with well over an inch of light tan head that persists nicely and eventually subsides leaving some decent lacing. Dark chocolate, caramel, and coffee notes rule the aroma with just the slightest hint of alcohol. Roasty at first, with the taste of dark chocolate covered espresso beans, nut, caramel notes, and a hint of butterscotch toward the finish. Medium to full in body with moderate carbonation. Wow. This was a lot better than I was expecting (even though I love the lager). Definitely making this a regular - especially for the price!

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Photo of angrybabboon
3.68/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review adapted from notes taken 12/5/10

Appearance: Pours a pitch black color with a tan head - much darker than anticipated, looks more like an American stout - decent lacing

Smell: Burnt and roasted malts with a hint of chocolate - some kind of corn huskiness underneath

Taste: Hearty, burnt, and tasty - the taste is very burnt and very roasted, almost to the extent that it tastes dry - some hints of coffee and chocolate - some sweetness, too - hints of hops in the mix as well

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, smooth

Overall: Surprisingly good

This was the first 'Gansett seasonal that I tried, and it is a solid beer. There is nothing particularly exciting about this porter, but there is also nothing particularly wrong with it. For a 6-pack of tallboys, $8 seems like a steal.

Edit (2012): Had to bump the taste from a 4.0 to a 3.5. Once this hits room temperature, it really starts to show some flaws...

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Photo of smcolw
3.86/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very nice, thick foamy head of three fingers. It lingers nicely and withdraws with good ring lace. The color is dark brown where no light shines through.

Overall, a very mild Porter aroma--some chocolate. I also detected what I thought a grainy pale unmalted barley. On second whiff, I couldn't find it.

The flavor is better than the smell--more darker malt flavors and the swallow features a good dose of bittering hop. Lightly chalky with a touch of coffee grounds. It's a refreshing porter, perhaps because it's thinner than most.

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Photo of BeefyMee
3.78/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Tall boy can pours out nearly pitch black with a wonderful tan head. Poured into a Sam Smith glass and it fills it out nicely. Great head retention and lacing.

S: Big notes of cocoa and roasted malt. Very rich.

T: Sweet and roasty upfront but finishes a little soapy. Chocolate in the aftertaste.

M: Pretty good on substance but turns slightly astringent.

A good porter overall. I wouldn't mind a few more of these in my future.

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Photo of PorterLambic
3.76/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an extremely dark brown with a fluffy 2" high head of cocoa colored foam. Good lace left behind.
Smell is a bit light though quite stout-like in the roasted malt, dark fruits, dark chocolate and whiskey notes. A touch of smoke and caramel round it out nicely. Great balance.
Taste is roasted malt, whiskey, caramel, dark fruit and a light smoke note. This brew benefits from some warming up.
A relatively rich and smooth brew with a nice slowly fading aftertaste. A slight warming of the palate as well. Medium body upfront actually feels fuller after the swallow. A light coating of the tongue and palate. Light effervescence. While I usually shy away from the can, that would be a bad idea here. Glad I had it, will do so gladly in the future.

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Photo of mterrence5
4.05/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have had this in the cans many times. And once on tap. Very drinkable porter. Doesn't overpower.

This doesnt poor well from the can as it is not very carbonated. Outta the tap it pours better.

Light in the mouth for a porter. Matly and very sweet chocolate tasting. Mild coffee notes. Slightly bitter finish. Very very smooth.

Outta the tap the taste seemed magnified greatly. The chocolate taste was almost overpowering and you could feel the ABV but not taste it. It seemed alot fuller in body as well. Almost like drinking chocolate liquer.

I could drink this year round if it stayed cold out but in the winter its a home run.

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Photo of gdrydenc
3.56/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark, dark brown. A significant amount of frothy dark tan head forms and sticks around for quite a while.

S - Not a ton, but hints of coffee and chocolate. Mostly malts, no hops to speak of. There's a bit of alcohol in the nose, which is a bit offputting, honestly.

T - Very little of the aforementioned alcohol in the taste. There's quite a bit more of the coffee and the chocolate than in the nose. I like the taste a lot more than I thought I would, given the smell.

M - Mouthfeel is pretty standard, but a bit watery. The taste lingers in the mouth for a while, which is nice, but unfortunately a lot of the taste is the worst parts of the taste overall.

Overall, a good brew. I've had their lager, which didn't impress me, and I got this on sale, so I wasn't expecting a lot, but I was impressed.

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Photo of Fernans
4.2/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is Narragansett's best product. I'll say this. It is one of the best porter's I've had.
A: Pitch with nice caramel head
S: Coffee
T: Coffee notes with slight hop finish
MF: Easy, finish is not long but clean
OA: I like this one a lot. Had it tap first and buy the cans when I can. Hard to find on tap though.

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Photo of billybob
3.91/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

like the 16 oz can, like the can label and like very much how the beer looks in the glass. pours pitch black full two to three finger tan head that holds very well and lots and lots of sticky lace. smell is a little weak, mostly roasted malt. strong roasted malt taste burnt toast comes to mind very vague hint of black pepper very dry but you don't really taste the alcohol but it warms you up nicely. crisp light to medium feel and a nice smoothness to it. a good basic porter thats very easy to drink.

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

Pours dark amber brown into into a pint glass, aggressive puffy and smooth tan head that isn't going anywhere fast.

Nose of milk/dark chocolate and some roasted malts.

Taste of chocolate, sweet grains, and some roastiness with a light hop bite on the back end. Relatively mild carbonation and thinner, smooth mouthfeel ends cleanly.

'Gansett ranks pretty low on my brewery scale, but this is one of their best. No nonsense, mightily drinkable porter. $7 for a six of local tall boys? Sold.

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Photo of aepb1
3.71/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Out of the can at The Alcove. Notes from Phone

A- Black body with a huge tan head

S- Roasted malts, not a whole lot

T- Roasted coffee malts and some burnt bread up front, some hops in the middle for a bit of balance and finishes dry with the roastiness again

M- Medium bodied and moderate carbonation. Not as creamy as I'd imagined

D- VERY easy to drink and will certainly return to this one if I'm able!

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Photo of Gmann
3.68/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The porter pours a pitch black color with a huge light brown head that slowly slowly disipates. Looks awesome.

The aroma is mild. There is some milk chocolate notes and a light brown bread. An un-assuming porter. Some chocolate notes with a bit of a grain characteristic.

The taste has an overall grain flavor to it but there is more to it. There are some milk chocolate notes as well as a watered down coffee flavor. The flavors are very mild, nothing stands out but they all work together. No off-putting flavors.

Moderate feel with soft carbonation. Very smooth and silky feel. ABV well well hidden, drinks extremly smooth.

The flavors aren't great but they don't suck. The body is very smooth and goes down great. This is a very solid beer. Could use a touch of flavor but quite good.

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Photo of washburnkid
3.86/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A tiny firm head over black body. Great lacing. Aromas are berries and chocolate. Thin but good carbonation reveals chocolate, the roasty aspects of which dominate the flavor. Fruity and berry, quite prominent but enjoyable. Bitter and acidic in the back of the sip. Exceptionally drinkable, but don't let it sit around for too long. It gets pretty hot with some warmth! Of course, if that's your thing, by all means.

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Photo of augustgarage
3.42/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A lovely local courtesy of ShogoKawada (thanks!). Poured from a pint can into my Samuel Smith nonik.

India ink brown liquid, exceedingly dark but clear with a very faint orb of ruby (like an eye) visible when held to strong light. A thin creamy cap recedes slowly to a buff collar and a few tiny islands of microbubbles. Average lacing, and thin oily legs.

Smells like a pile of autumn leaves, weak coffee, and light roast malt.

Toasty brown bread, and a low slightly vegetal bitterness from hops on the palate, along with a hint of cheap coffee, tea, and, bittersweet chocolate. Mildly astringent finish, with a touch of sourness, char, and a hint of metallic off notes. Reminds me of a dry, alcoholic, weak-flavored root beer at times.

Low but sufficient carbonation; medium-light bodied; lightly warming.

A unique but not entirely successful rendition of the style.

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Photo of largadeer
3.66/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16 oz can from ShogoKawada. Thanks!

Appearance: Opaque dark brown bordering on black. A lasting head with a tanned leather hue rests on top.

Smell: Heavy on the toasted grain, almost reminiscent of an American brown ale. Little bit of coffee-like roast and a pronounced yeast character - lager yeast perhaps? Simple, clean and pleasant.

Taste & mouthfeel: There's more cocoa and roasted malt on the tongue than the nose suggests, but it's still a very soft and velvety porter. The mid-palate brings out flavors of oatmeal, raisin and carob. Medium-full bodied, but easily quaffed. The finish is fairly complex, showing some initial cereal grain sweetness that transitions into mild hop bitterness, licorice and an unfortunate Alka-Seltzer flavor that lingers more than I'd like.

Overall: Enjoyable and easy to drink, but after a while I found it hard to get past the lingering Alka-Seltzer flavor.

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Photo of Floyd12
3.53/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16 oz Tall Boy "Bomber" poured into a mug.

A- Extremely dark black beer, almost totaly opaque. A monstrous head of off white graduall subsided leaving beautiful lacing all down the mug.

S- A strong toasted scent wih an aroma of cocoa and coffee. Slightly sweet smelling.

T- Coffee and undeniable chocolate maltiness are enormously present, with a light hop finish. Slightly bready quality to it.

M- Low carbonation with a medium/heavy body feel to it. Very smooth with a dry finish.

D- Fairly high. There is nothing offensive about this. Definately the best Ganssett has to offer.

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Photo of jonB
3.51/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

This old school brewery presented in a nice brown tall boy can. It pours super dark with a solid lump of foam. Nothing special about the smell, but the taste is spot on. It has a good roastiness and a slight hint of cocoa. Unfortunately it finishes bland and has too light a mouth feel. Goes down smooth for such a high ABV,

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Photo of Hibernator
4.08/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Narragansett Porter
16 oz can
Served in a 20 oz tulip glass

Pours a jet black with an awesome head. A massive, fluffy head forms. Great sticky lacings appear on the side of the glass.

Roasted notes in the nose with some sweetness, like a cinnamon bun. A hint of hot chocolate too.

Dark roasted malts with distinct coffee flavors. A touch of espresso or French Roast appeal. Heavy dose of chocolate malts with hints of milk chocolate & Baker's chocolate. Mini hop bite on the finish. The 7% ABV is very well hidden.

There is a soft mouthfeel and low carbonation, which only adds the drinkability. So smooth and drinkable.

I purchased a 6 pack of this beer tonight for $8.99 (16 oz cans) and I'm pleasantly surprised. A really good Porter, especially for the price.


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Photo of lou50rp
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I was pleasantly surprised by this brew.
It has the appearance of a good porter, dark brown with a medium tan head which lasts a bit.
The smell was a bit sweet with hints of chocolate.
the taste was of chocolate and hops at the end. A mild hops taste.
The mouth feel was light to medium. Good for this brew.
Very drinkable. A good porter, not caught up in the high ABV game. Very drinkable for a cold winters day, or night.
Narragansett has a winner.

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Photo of samyoung
4.1/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Trader Joes delivers the Massachusetts (via Rochester, NY) goods. Narragansett lager was decent, but I am looking for a whole lot more in the porter.

A - Looks really good; dark, oil black with about a one-inch head that dissipated rather quickly.
S - Chocolate, oats and hops.
T - Hop-chocolate up front taste melting into barley-bitterness.
M - Seems thick at first yet fails to stick.
D - Very smooth and drinkable.

I really enjoyed this one. Narragansett knows exactly what they are doing - it did not disappoint.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.9/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Many, many thanks to my regular trade partner, indiapaleale, for sending this (among others) to me in the furtherance of The CANQuest (TM). The weather has suddenly turned cold and windy again after an unexpected week-long respite and I suddenly need a beer.

From the CAN: "Hi-Neighbor! We've been brewing our supremely drinkable AmeriCAN Porter since 1916. Whether you call it 'Gansett Dark like some old-time New Englanders [nope, I'm PA born and raised - ed.] or just plain old Porter, you'll love this mild and deliciously nuanced brew. It's not winter in New England unless you're drinking Narragansett Porter." As an added bonus, as a retired sailor, I really dug the label art. Nothing like crossing the Atlantic in the winter! Been there, done that.

The Crack revealed yet another CAN filled damn near to the rim! Talk about getting your money's worth on a CANsistent basis ... The Glug too me by surprise, producing WAYYY more dense, foamy, deep-tan head than I anticipated. Holy Head, Batman! I had to back off of my pour lest it overflow the glass. It was dense and fluffy, like insulation and the beer was cascading, creating more head from the bottom up. I used the interlude to hold the glass to the light and only some cola highlights were visible since there was zero light penetration. The nose had a fresh-mown quality to it, like grass or hay, slightly underlain by a metallic odor. I hate to use that last descriptor since there are still those unbelievers who think that the CAN leeches metal into the beer. Oh well, I calls 'em as I smells 'em. Lots of great lacing left behind as the massive head fell. I resumed my pour and now it looked like the top of a milkshake. Mouthfeel was medium with an initial burst of roasty flavors on the tongue, including dark chocolate and charcoal smokiness, but accompanied by a grassy hoppiness as noted on the nose. I did not taste any metallic flavors, so maybe it was an olfactory trick, a trompe du nez, so to speak. Finish had a charcoal bitterness initially and ended with a dark chocolate smokiness. Indiapaleale mentioned that this is a bargain if you CAN find it and given its depth and complexity of flavors, I would have to agree. If only I had had some for Hula in the Coola Day (01 February, annually), I would have been dancing.

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Photo of Schmidts
4.6/5  rDev +24%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours Black as coal with a 2 inch head that is mocha brown colored.
Smells of Chocolate and coffee. Taste notes of Chocolate,caramell and Toffee, it is very creamy and flavorful. It is smooth with just a touch of bitterness it rolls down very nice.
It is a very drinkable Porter and with just having two 16 oz cans tonight it has become a new favorite a Very Good Porter in the tradition of the American Porters I drank when I was young. Give this Porter a try You will grow to love it. Glad that it has finally come to Pa!

It is a winner!

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Narragansett Porter from Narragansett Brewing Co.
3.71 out of 5 based on 269 ratings.
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