Anchor Porter | Anchor Brewing Company

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Anchor PorterAnchor Porter
3,779 Ratings
Anchor PorterAnchor Porter

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
With deep black color, a thick, creamy head, rich chocolate, toffee and coffee flavors, and full-bodied smoothness, Anchor Porter® is the epitome of a handcrafted dark beer.

A blend of specially roasted pale, caramel, chocolate, and black malts, along with our top-fermenting yeast, creates complexity without bitterness. The brew is hopped at a high rate, and naturally carbonated. The result is dark in the glass, but surprisingly light on the palate.

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,779 |  Reviews: 1,574
Reviews by dbarny76:
Photo of dbarny76
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

More User Reviews:
Photo of doktorhops
3.25/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Anchor Porter, the latest on my ever-slowly-growing Christmas list of Anchor beers is (as will be the next beer I review) an anomaly - a blip stylistically - from a brewer better known for another beer type (in this case their patented “Steam Beer”). With the trepidation of a beer explorer going into the jungles of Porter from a brewer that is knowingly focused on another style, and armed with terribly conjured metaphors, I ventured forth... will I ever see my loved ones again? Perhaps I shall write them a letter.

Poured from a 355ml bottle into a nonic pint.

A: Dark, hazed cola body with a massive 1 inch tan head that slowly settles down to a centimetre, in the process confusing my American readers by mixing Imperial and metric measurements - bad beer! 8/10.

S: Unroasted coffee beans, chocolate and dark fruits give this Porter a touch of English Strong Ale, hint of molasses brings us back to the US of A. Further whiffs (and as is trademark to my reviews: taking too long in writing my thoughts and letting the beer warm considerably) releases a lot more molasses, to the point that you would think this beer was a Southern gentleman who enjoys repeating the word “molasses” with an added grunt ad nauseam. 8/10.

T: Flavour is molasses up front with dark fruits, some nuttiness (interesting) and earthy/herbal hop bitterness in the finish. Overall flavour is more like a Strong or Brown Ale than a Porter, and as such creates a distraction for a well-versed Stout drinker like myself. Where are the heavier/darker flavours of coffee/chocolate characters I wonder? Aftertaste is a bitter herbal note. Not a fan of this Porter. 6/10.

M: Watery, mid to light bodied with a wafer-thin carbonation... it is indeed lacking here over other Porters I’ve had. 5/10.

D: Don’t get me wrong, I do like a good English Strong Ale (I regularly keep Hook Norton’s Twelve Days in my fridge) but this Porter is so far off style it’s difficult to recommend it over other Porters like: Founders, Harviestoun, Samuel Smith’s or Fuller’s London Porter... I can easily keep naming decent Porters et al. - all of which have the classic Porter flavour profile that I know and love, trust me on this reader - I know a good Porter when I taste one, I have the same ability with Dalmatians (knowing them when tasting them). 6/10.

Food match: The overt (unroasted!) maltiness of this brew would suit game bird.

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Photo of marieli
4.52/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. 52d. Smell is malt with a little caramel-like aroma. Taste is on the clean and lighter side. Some slight bitterness that is well balanced. Overall a very versatile porter and very drinkable under many conditions. I liked it a lot and this would be a solid choice if Black Butte was unavailable.

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Photo of MrHolland
5/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of my favorite brews.. started my craft brewery obsession.

Pours a dark black with ruby highlights around the edge of the glass with a big tan frothy head that retains through the whole beverage and laces the glass. Smells of sweet malts, alcohol, and just brewed coffee notes. Very rich earthy and smooth coffee notes in the taste of the brew. Feels like liquid silk going into the mouth.
Could drink one of these right when I wake up in the morning ;) Def. my favorite beer from my favorite style at the moment. Recommend ++.

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Photo of 1000lbgrizzly
4.35/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark ruby-brown-black, tan rocky creamy head, spots of lace. Fantastic aromas of sweet cream, roasted barley, milk chocolate, and a bit of umami soy sauce. Taste is wonderful: roast that gives off a bit of bitterness which is aided by mild hop resins, chocolate, stone, and faint sweetness. Everything is deep, and it has a good long finish. Creamy, smooth mouthfeel, medium-full body.
I'm gonna say it and I don't care who knows: I love this beer. Fantastic balance of all the flavors, which were rich and satisfying. Inviting from the initial glance, delicious through the smell and taste and feel, and satisfying on the long rich finish. My new favorite porter.

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Photo of craigmorris74
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A wonderful porter that tastes and feels more like an English style ale than modern American variants. Anchor porter is malt-forward and incredibly smooth and rich. A porter that you can have two or three of after a hard days work.

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Photo of cb500rider
1.62/5  rDev -60.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

God! This is awful. I used to love Anchor Porter with its subtle, slightly sweet flavor. But it's changed. Picked up my first six-pack of Anchor Porter in about three years; what happened?! What used to be a nice, sweet porter has turned into a bottle of liquid smoke. Maybe my six was bottled during one of those well-known California brush fires, but I doubt it. Shame on you Anchor for changing one of the best Porters into something that tastes like a charcoal briquette. Now I'm stuck with the other five!!!

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Photo of kidgloves2
5/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've tried countless porters. I keep coming back to Anchor and compare all other porters to it. I think this is a perfect beer IMO. My local beer store keeps it stocked for me.

I compare it to Guinness Extra Stout, but better.

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Photo of oberon
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a real deep brown with a small almond colored head that leaves some decent lacing,the aroma is of deeply roasted malt and a little earthiness.The taste is a variety of different flavors,some roasted malt in the start with a almost caramel sweet middle ending woody and smoky,Real nice body feel one of the best American porters that I have had.

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Photo of mojohawk21
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of RoyalT
3.55/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – The beer is almost jet black with a moderate head.

Smell – The dark malt has a sweet fruitiness that reminds me of my wife’s fruit salad (bananas, Rainer cherries, grapes, and some other stuff).

Taste – The taste is right on with the aroma. The fruity malt is augmented a little bit with a hint of hops and a splash of coffee. It’s a little shallow for my taste but good nevertheless.

Mouthfeel – Very creamy with little to no carbonation and medium-bodied.

Drinkability – This goes down pretty well. It’s smooth, tasty, and doesn’t have any awkward or obnoxious flavors to slow down the drinker.

Comments – I would have preferred a little more complexity and a heavier body for this one, but it’s still an all around good brew. I think this would be a great porter for introducing a friend to the style.

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Photo of DanGeo
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of tectactoe
3.63/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours pitch black, deep brown hints barely pull through the edges. Very volatile brew, tan head mildy fluffy but quick to disappear. Tons of roasted malts on the nose, slight hints of chocolate; but the most prominent is a deep fruity sweetness mostly reminiscent of grapes and figs - coupled with the alcohol touch, it is very much like a red wine aroma. Upon first sip, it tastes almost more like an Irish stout than an American porter. Big roasty flavor, unsweetened coffee, some dark chocolate in the very back. Big barley flavor; toasted and dark. Sweet at first, then the bitterness eventually comes into play. Hops are very present in the latter half; leafy and ashy. The sweetness comes back to finish it out - fairly dry all around. Very slight creaminess to the body, but overall a pretty thin mouth and just a touch too watery for the style.

This beer reminds me of Guinness Extra Stout and several other Irish stouts, but its got slightly more flavor. Infusion of wine-like aromas with heavy roasted malts make for an interesting drink. Lots of flavor at only 5.6% ABV.

 1,082 characters

Photo of t2grogan
3.25/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

This is really strange. I'm not digging it.

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Photo of MadScientist
3.25/5  rDev -20.5%

Photo of Spaten454
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of tbryan5
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of uu1
5/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of sgoodship
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm very familiar with Anchor Steam - it's very mainstream in Chicago. This was my first legitimate look at Anchor Brewing.

A: Purchased a 1pt. 6 fl.oz. bottle at EV1 in Evanston. It poured a lovely dark brown - almost black . Burgundy glow against the light. The head was a finger high coffee stained cream fluffy head that left fantastic lacing. As the head dissipated, a nice thin head stayed throughout.

S: Caramel malt, a little bread, coffee. Some pleasing sourness. Good familiar porter smell - not that bold.

T: Initially, I found the carbonation inhibiting my taste. I let it bubble off, so that I could enjoy. Dry front, then a hint of dark fruit, some of the sweet caramel malt payoff and then quickly to the coffee and bitter dark chocolate. Finish was a hint of hops and the aftertaste felt like a mix of hop sourness and burnt molasses. Well balanced overall.

M: Medium bodied and medium carbonation. If you don't pay attention to the carbonation, the drink is actually quite creamy and smooth.

D: A lovely porter. A little too much carbonation for my taste and the aftertaste was a little too burnt for my liking. Not taking away from the quality of this brew - really awesome and I'd be happy to have one anytime.

 1,235 characters

Photo of JacobMutberg
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of kcc
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Nyved
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Dmann
4.36/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer came well recommended and it did not let me down at all. It poured a very dark brown with a nice big brown head that lasted quite awhile before leaving a nice lace around the glass. The smell was more on the chocolate side but still had a little coffee scent as well. The taste had a slight smokyness to it that was very pleasing and the burnt chocolate flavors really stood out for me. The mouthfeel was a bit thinner than I was expecting from a beer that poured this thick, but it was very nice. This is one of the most drinkable porters I have had and I will most definantly get it again.

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Photo of drewkennedy
4.75/5  rDev +16.1%

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.05/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice deep brown / black with virtually no head. Minimal lacing as well. The smell is burnt, roasted grains with hints of coffee and cocoa as well. Some nice floral hops float in and out.

The first sip has a predominent burnt, almost smoky malt flavor upfront with a background melding of coffee, cocoa and slight hop nuances. Quite a bitter, burnt bread flavor with hints of molasses makes for a interesting porter.

Mouthfeel is good and carbonation is not overwhelming. It goes down smooth and hits the spot...pretty much perfect for the style. Drinkability is good and this would make a tasty session if I was in the mood. If you enjoy porters, this one is worthy of a try.

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Anchor Porter from Anchor Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.09 out of 5 with 3,779 ratings