Pluff Mud Porter
Holy City Brewing

Pluff Mud PorterPluff Mud Porter
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Porter - American
Ranked #839
Ranked #32,188
3.76 | pDev: 12.5%
Holy City Brewing
South Carolina, United States
Very Good
Pluff Mud PorterPluff Mud Porter
Notes: Pluff mud [plŭff-mŭd], noun, A mixture of dirt and water indigenous to the marshes of the South Carolina Lowcountry, with a distinct odor that’s endearing to locals, but off-putting to tourists and redcoats.

Our second flagship beer was an effort to bring the American Porter style to the Charleston market proper, while also making a beer that stays appealing as the mercury rises. We think we’ve succeeded in Pluff Mud Porter. It presents (and smells) like a classic porter, with subtle chocolate notes and a silky finish, but the medium body and tame ABV keep it refreshing at all times. Enjoy this throughout the year, in or out of the marsh.

21 IBU
Reviews: 61 | Ratings: 414 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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UristMcBrewer from Pennsylvania

4.11/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a nutty brown with a light tan head which doesn't stick around for too long. It has a sweet nutty earthy smell. It is overly sweet on the nose, reminiscent of snicker-doodles. The taste is chocolaty and somewhat rich. The earthiness is also present in the taste. The feel isn't very thick and has pointed carbonation. Overall, it is a porter with earthy notes and on the lighter side of the style.

Dec 24, 2019
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mooseisloose from Florida

3.99/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Served up on tap in a pint glass in Charleston. Deep brown with thin tan head. Smells of roasted malts and cocoa. Taste is upfront chocolate with tad bit of molasses. Nice carbonation. Very fresh and tasty. A great drinker.

Nov 20, 2019
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Bluerabbitbell from Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Can. Color is a opaque chocolate brown. Smell is stoney. Taste starts out chocolate/coffee, but ends off and bitter. Bought at Piggly wiggly in Myrtle Beach on trip with Boe and Beth.

Sep 24, 2019
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pubscout from New Jersey

3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The Pluff Mud Porter can shares that "Pluff Mud" is a mixture of dirt and water that's indigenous to the marshes of the South Carolina Low Country, with a distinctive odor that is endearing to locals, but off-putting to tourists and redcoats." While i certainly detected notes of chocolate and coffee in the nose of this porter, I think I also detected some Pluff Mud, because, although it wasn't "off-putting," I couldn't identify it. I also detected a bit of a bitter bite (Pluff Mud Hops?) on the back end, although that mitigated somewhat after half a pint. There's an ever-present malty sweetness--albeit not cloying at all-- in the nose and on the palate. This is not a bad beer by any means, but it is different. Muddy and murky it is to the eye (which you'd expect from marsh water and dirt in the Low Country), but it's quite drinkable, and the 5.5% ABV makes it easily sessionable once you reconcile yourself to its uniqueness. I doubt that all tourists would find this off-putting, though it's definitely not what redcoats are likely used to tasting in their porters. I'd drink it again, if you were buying.

Aug 11, 2019
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sulldaddy from Connecticut

3.92/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Sampling a cellar temp 12 oz can poured into my snifter. The beer was purchased at WHole Foods on a recent trip to Charleston.
The beer pours a clear brown hue with a fizzy beige head of 2 cm foaming up and fading quickly to a thin surface layer.
The aroma is malty and roasty with some dark chocolate as well. Maybe an actual hint of charred wood too. Appealing yet mild nose on this brew.
The first sip reveals an average body with fine gentle rolling carbonation that tickles across my palate on each swallow. The texture is smooth and this beer is easily drinkable.
Flavor is what I expect with roasted malt and some dark chocolate mixing nicely together. A little bit of a sweet brown sugar piece and then back to roast notes on the finish. These notes linger long after each swallow. I dont really get any hop character on this beer and I enjoy drinking this brew. Glad to have got this one and will look for again on the next trip to Charleston!

May 20, 2019
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Rockhead from Virginia

3.7/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Purchased canned 6, poured with no head at all, looks like soda. Gives off a slight chocolate/malt smell that continues throughout the taste. Solid chocolate porter overall, would drink again.

Mar 13, 2019
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Speartron from Maryland

4.25/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours with little to no head. Very light on the carbonation.
Milk, sweetend chocolate and molasses are the first tastes. Almost sweet like a maple syrup. Earthy sweet malt.

Nov 12, 2018
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WoodBrew from Ohio

3.93/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I'm trying this at the Norfolk Southern Brosnan Forest Retreat in South Carolina. It poured an opaque dark with no head and no lace. The scent had chocolate hints. The taste was nicely balanced and easy to drink with earth and chocolate presence. The mouthfeel was lighter in body with subtle carbonation. Overall its a decent beer.

Oct 31, 2018
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kemoarps from Washington

3.66/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Dark cola brown that fizzes hella hard when I first pop the can. Gentle pour yields a glass that has maybe a couple of centimeters of liquid, but a head that is threatening to overflow the glass and pour onto the counter. I let it sit for a couple of minutes and try the pour again and while it is still eager to reach the top rim of my glass, it contents itself to remain confined therein and after the initial surge, settles in to a rapidly thinning set of pale light brown bubbles that congregate around the edges of the circle, but leave no lacing.

First notes on the nose are incredibly sweet (incredible referring to the quality not the quantity of sweetness if that makes sense. Almost kind of like a light molasses... somewhere between molasses and syrup. Honestly it kind of reminds of the sweetness in an attempted oatmeal maple stout I brewed with my brother way back when. With time and warmth the sweetness takes on an almost apple juice/cider type edge as well. So like... molasses and apple juice.

Initial notes carry a similar sweet character as the nose, but exploration beyond this layer yields some depth and nuance that has me intrigued. Layered in there is some soft cocoa and a fudgy chocolate that is like the echo of a rich fudge ribbon. It comes back together with a faint ashy bitterness.

Dry body with aggressive carbonation.
This has some deceptive depth to it and is an interesting contrast to the other porter I have tried thusfar today which leaned much more into the coffee/bitter side of things.
Much gratitude to @Dragginballs76 for sending this along as part of his NBS BIF #8 generosity. Thanks Mike!

Oct 28, 2018
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PuffySAJ from South Carolina

4.24/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Comparable to Yee Haw’s dunkle, this porter is even and smooth. Hints of chocolate and coffee flavors make this American porter a great choice. I’ll definitely drink more in the future.

Jun 01, 2018
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

an excellent porter by any measure, smooth and velvety to drink, chocolatey and even desserty in flavor profile but drier in the finish, fluffy feeling and drinkable for a dark beer, seems well suited to the warm weather there. the malt build is awesome, with layers of dark and sweet chocolate and even some caramel in the middle, it tastes like a cake or something, but all very natural, roasted and nutty and without the bitterness of a super dark barley, no coffee hints, it stops short of that range of depth, and i think that is a smart recipe decision for the local context. its well stacked in terms of flavor layers, lots to taste at once but not too complex that it doesnt work well with food. a pleasing dry cocoa thing happens through most of it, faint caramelized malt sugars, and even a dash of smoke to it as well. lots of body and lots of carbonation, more active than most in its field, really helps it finish. a really fine porter here from these guys, i thought this was a rather unique one too, more nuance than is common. well done!

May 12, 2018
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Blackop555 from Michigan

3.89/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours brown. Short, foamy, tan head that fades fast.

Smells chocolate, light coffee, light roast and earthy bitterness.

Tastes light roast malt and light coffee, hints of chocolate and caramel and a hint of earthy hops. Finish is semi dry with a roast linger. Light medium body and fizzy medium carbonation.

Mar 31, 2018
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oberon from North Carolina

3.49/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

My first Holy City beer.Pours more of a deep mahogany with a thinner khaki colored head atop.Picking up a little chocolate and char in the nose but it's a lighter aroma profile.A little sharpness in the mouth,light to medium in feel.Chocolate and a hint of dark fruit upfront on the palate with a dryish charred finish.A pretty average porter,not something to seek out,but not awful either.

Mar 26, 2018
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Gavage from Nevada

3.93/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: brown in color with a 1/2" head that falls to a thick covering.

Smell: some sugar sweetness rises from the glass.

Taste: roasted malt, brown sugar, dark plums, and other pitted fruit sweetness. Mild bitterness.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp to start, smooth at the finish.

Overall: was told to seek this one out as a great beer, but for me it was good, Definitely enjoyable.

Aug 25, 2017
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trygelski1 from Pennsylvania

3.52/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz can poured into a snifter glass:

Look: Pours a dark brown to slightly black color with about an inch of head present! No lacing present on the glass!

Smell: Average porter aroma of chocolate, faint coffee, and light hops!

Taste: Taste follows the nose for me! Very average taste for a porter! This seems to be lacking a bit in the taste department!

Feel: Light to medium bodied! Wish this was a bit heavier!

Overall: Not a bad porter but there are better options out there such as Great Lakes Eddy Fitz and Founders Porter! Glad I picked up a can of this on vacation to give it a shot! I would revisit this one in a year or two when I make it back down this way for vacation!

Aug 09, 2017
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

3.74/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Built to resemble the muddy marshes of the Carolina lowlands, the flagship porter of Holy City gives the south a taste of richness but with the body of manageable strength and weight.

Pluff Mud pours not nearly as off putting as mud, but is dark coffee brown and with a creamy mocha stained blanket of foam. Its robust scent comes with chocolate, coffee, nutty and toffee scents. Its taste is sweet with caramel, toffee, vanilla, chocolate and toast as its flavors register with the early palate.

As the ale weakens across the middle palate, its drinkability picks up steam but its savory flavors begin to fade from those robust toast, coffee and roasted nuttiness and toward a chocolate, peanut skin and coffee grounds finish. Broadly bitter with woodsy hops, their effects tuck nicely behind malt impressions of cocoa, coffee and toast.

Medium full on the palate, the porter dries moderately toward finish to provide a drinkable and relaxed session on the palate. But its attempt at lightness exposes some of the mild grain derived astringencies that come way of stemmy woods, dark berry skins and seeds, and an overall peppery unsettlement that lessens the beer's texture slightly in a long and toasty aftertaste.

Jul 12, 2017
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darkglasseye from North Carolina

3.62/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Average porter, nothing to call him about. Had higher hopes for this after trying one of Holy City Brewery's IPA's at Cigar Box cigar shop in downtown Columbia, SC and being impressed. Their IPA was fantastic but this porter is mediocre to boring. Comes out of the can frothy with a creamy texture across the tongue. I'm tasting a nutty initial hint which fades to a soft sweetness. Enjoyed with a Nicaraguan cigar: wouldn't turn one down but will stick with their IPA's in the future.

Jun 12, 2017
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JayQue from Virginia

3.34/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Very mediocre Porter. 12 oz can poured into a pint glass. Pours a good dense brown color with the only light coming through at the bottom of the glass. It takes a hard pour to get any kind of head at all, and then it is a thin fizzy one that fades fast. No lacing on the glass. Mild malty aroma with a little chocolate and coffee. Taste is more of the same but there is also an odd chemical/metallic aftertaste that tends to take from any positives that you might get from the beer. Mouthfeel is smooth but a little thin. Not one I would seek out again!!!

Jan 09, 2017
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Alieniloquium from Florida

3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz. can. Deep brown. Medium khaki head. Smells of toasty bread and some coffee. Tastes of coffee, a little bit of hops, sharp bitterness. Toasty malts. A little nutty in the finish. Medium body. Not bad.

Sep 22, 2016
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cacack from Ohio

4.67/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

An excellent Porter! Def need to seek this out. Stumbled upon it while on vacation looking for something dark and flavorful compared to the pale ale so common in the South. The brewery's description on the can is spot on.

Pours a dark brown with dark garnet highlights when held up to the light. Head was a decent finger of creamy tan that reduced fairly quick but lasted most of the beer. Aroma was light chocolate with a touch of nuttiness. Flavor starts with chocolate shifting to a toasted nuttiness before finishing with sweet malt and light hop. Body is thin but still in line for the style.

Overall this has become my fav Porter that is perfect for hot weather. The flavors all blend quite well with nothing overpowering each other. My only disappointment is the lack of availability in Ohio. Will be attempting a homebrew clone for sure!

Jul 04, 2016
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Dmbtwister from South Carolina

4.9/5  rDev +30.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A friendly beer that pours with a silky head, dark chocolate in color. Terrific initial porter perfect taste with a slightly sweet back end. Not overly heavy. I enjoyed it served extra cold. Highly recommend this beer.

Mar 20, 2016
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woodychandler from Pennsylvania

3.49/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

I had scored some CANs recently that I knew would get locals' attention, so I solicited for new (to me) CANs in return in furtherance of The CANQuest (tm). This was one of those beers! Once again, boys & girls, it pays to advertise.

From the CAN: "Pluff mud [plŭff-mŭd], noun, A mixture of dirt and water indigenous to the marshes of the South Carolina Lowcountry, with a distinct odor that’s endearing to locals, but off-putting to tourists and redcoats."; "Our second flagship beer was an effort to bring the American Porter style to the Charleston market proper, while also making a beer that stays appealing as the mercury rises. We think we’ve succeeded in Pluff Mud Porter. It presents (and smells) like a classic porter, with subtle chocolate notes and a silky finish, but the medium body and tame ABV keep it refreshing at all times. Enjoy this throughout the year, in or out of the marsh."

The Crack! presented me with a surprise! I got a little spray across the fingers, followed by some foaming through the vent. I could not tell if it was a squirter or if it was just happy to see me, like a small puppy greeting its master. Upon settling, I saw that it was brimful, but that could be accounted for by a mishap incurred about a week ago when it leapt off of its shelf and got a minor dent. I decided that it had seen enough abuse during its lifetime and went with a very gentle Glug to get things started. A swirl raised a finger of foamy, deep-tan/light-brown head that quickly fell back to wisps. I may have frightened it with its fall. Color was Dark Brwon to Very Dark Brown (SRM = > 27, < 34) with NE-quality clarity and garnet highlights. Nose smelled of dark chocolate, vanilla, light smoke and some sort of nuttiness - almonds (?), walnuts (?) as well as dried dark cherries and prunes or raisins or both. This was one of the more memorable porters for me in recent, well, memory. Mouthfeel was medium, but silky, like a dollop had been ladled onto my tongue. Unfortunately, the taste did not rise to my level of expectations created by the nose. It had an odd sourness, like tart cherries, but it did not bond well with the cocoa/chocolate flavors & the smokiness that cut through it. Finish was dry, with a taste of dried dark fruits & dark chocolate, but the sourness lingered like a jarring off-note.

Mar 14, 2016
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DavoleBomb from Pennsylvania

3.3/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a snifter.

3.0 A: Black color. One and a half fingers of frothy beige head. Retention is below average and a short ring of lacing is left.

3.5 S: There's some roastiness, but it's a lot more toasty and nutty. Chocolate and tangy caramel. It's okay but it could use some more maltiness.

3.25 T: The taste is distinctly tangy. Tangy caramel to be specific. Again a mix of roast, toast, and nuttiness. It's on the drier side and could benefit from more maltiness. Aside from that, it has a good flavor profile if the tanginess were put in check.

3.25 M: Lighter medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Lacking in creaminess, but still refreshing.

3.25 D: It's decent, but has some problems.

Feb 11, 2016
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troyvar from Minnesota

3.62/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz can into a standard beer glass. Black with a tan head, head and lacing don't last very long. Smell is chocolate and coffe, just as expected. Taste, earthy...different, but well worth a try if you can find it. Medium body, less than I'm used to in a porter, but very drinkable.

Feb 09, 2016
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cab4514 from South Carolina

4.13/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

When I moved down to the South from Massachusetts, my one complaint about the beer scene down here was that there was nothing down here but ales and saisons. Then I discovered the Pluff Mud Porter. Its very unique. Most wouldn't consider a porter a summer beer, but It is a very drinkable porter - not too heavy. I get it on tap when I'm out, but it in can, or buy fill my growlers with it. It's become my local go-to.

Has a chocolate malt smell, a nice roasty taste, with a medium body,

Sep 12, 2015
Pluff Mud Porter from Holy City Brewing
Beer rating: 85 out of 100 with 414 ratings