Flying Fish Brewing Company

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Porter - American
3.62 | pDev: 10.5%
Flying Fish Brewing Company
New Jersey, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Reviews: 56 | Ratings: 69 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Foxman
Foxman from New Jersey

3.65/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It pours a dark but crisp brown, flashing claret at the margins. A finger of light brown crema head drops away swiftly to pockets of beige froth. Thin but sticky lacing adheres to the inside of the glass.

The aroma is all about malt, dark roasted and burnt toffee sweet, with raisins and cocoa besting a vague berry fruit note.

Upon tasting, the malt comes in a bit thinner here, but still plying a bite of deep roast and caramel sweetness. Bittersweet chocolate, raisins, coffee, and some nuttiness arise, but never very tall. Hops make a mild play here, being distantly citric and fading soon to a burnt biscuit grainy bitterness. The finish is bitter and dry, and pretty short to boot. Overall, it's fairly pleasant, but unremarkable.

Between light and medium bodied, it still flows faster and more liquid than expected, with a crisp presence but little staying power.

I was trashing some old notebooks and came across this review from almost two years ago. Having had a couple of these since, I can say my opinion hasn't changed. And that's a shame, because, like with other Flying Fish offerings, it seems to want to be more, but something is holding it back. Now retired, it is at least drinkable, but from these guys, I'd rather have HopFish, or if it's a long session, the Farmhouse. Anyway, it's gone away, at least for now, but if it comes back, I hope it delivers more on its promise.

Jan 17, 2007
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ViveLaChouffe from Georgia

3.8/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark brown with tinges of ruby. Head reduces to a thin but persistent and creamy tan. Hardly any lacing. Smells lightly of roasty, creamy dark malt.

Taste is not as roasty as you'd think. Sweetish dark biscuity malt, fades to a creamy chocolatey flavor with a quite light but satisfying bitter coffee flavor. Aftertaste is the bitter coffee lingering in low levels for quite a while. A lighter bodied porter but it delivers on the subtle balanced flavors. Easy drinker. Good little porter.

Dec 15, 2006
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BuckeyeNation from Iowa

3.55/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bloodied dark brown on the coaster, dusky ruby when bright sunlight is permitted entry. The coffee-with-a-lot-of-cream head is on the small side, but makes up for it by hanging around and by gracing the glass with soem sudsy lace... not much of which lasts.

The nose is neither robust, nor very dark malty. Given the far from opaque appearance and the less than roasted nose, I'll go out on a limb and predict that this isn't one of the bigger porters on the style block. It still has a pleasantly soft, cocoa and fruit-like nose, however.

For a lighter version, Flying Fish Porter is pretty good beer with a surprising amount of flavor. The mouthfeel would suggest that there isn't a ton of malt on board, but what's present carries out its flavor transfer duties with competence and style. Bittersweet chocolate, black coffee and citric hops are all present. I just wish the beer would bathe the taste buds for even a little bit longer.

When assessing the mouthfeel on a porter, I frequently have to remind myself that I'm not drinking a stout. This beer's body, again, is on the lighter end of the style spectrum. I'm finding it to be acceptable, but any thinner at all wouldn't work.

I wish Flying Fish Porter would spend more time soaring above the water than swimming in it. Although it isn't quite fair to call the mouthfeel watery, adding more roasted malt seems like such an easy fix and would turn this above average beer into a potentially exceptional one.

Sep 14, 2006
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tgbljb from Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep brown color with reddish tints. Minimal head with sparse tannish head. No lacing. Smell is minimal with some roasted malt and caramel noted. Taste is enjoyable with rich dark fruits mixed with coffee and chocolate present. Finish shows a strong fruitiness and a pleasant bitterness at the end. Very easy drinking. An enjoyable beer.

May 24, 2006
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jwc215 from Arizona

4.14/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This porter poured a very dark brown, almost black. The head was somewhat disappointing - it almost immediately became a thin lace.
The smell was of aromas of a mingling of coffee and chocolate to create a very inviting smell.
The taste was slightly thinner than the smell, but was a well-balanced mix of tastes - coffee with a chocolate texture with a slight, warming, alcohol finish.
It is a delicious beer. The good, well-balanced aftertaste makes this highly drinkable.
This is a good example of a session American Porter. (By the way, it's available year round - though I heard that it might be retired soon.)

May 07, 2006
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chakadrum from Pennsylvania

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

Nothing really stoodout too much about this beer, but it was what I'd call a decent brew.

Dark dark brown in color. Surprisingly little head at all. Smell is subtle but almost coffee like. The taste follows. Initially it tastes sort of bland to me, but the aftertaste is a nice subtle coffee flavor. Very enjoyable. The carbonation seems a bit much. I would have like a smoother mouthfeel on this one.

May 01, 2006
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brewcrew76 from Wisconsin

3.35/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Dark brown ruby with a thin tan head.

S - Nutty, malty, hint of chocolate and coffee.

T - Nutty, hints of chocolate and coffee, grainy.

M - Light and creamy. Very little carbonation.

D - A very light porter that is easy to drink but lacking in aroma and flavor. A little to nutty/grainy for my liking.

Apr 24, 2006
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NClifestyle from North Carolina

3.12/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to my buddy scarecrowe for the sample.
Pours up a dark brown color with a fluffy medium thick head of light tan foam, large bubbles are scattered across the surface. The beer looks more like a brown ale, but the head is all porter, thin sheets of lace down the side of the glass.
Smell is sweet and bready, with maybe a hint of chocolate. Slighty roasted smell, no hop.
Taste is extremely roasted, a bit astringent, slightly metallic/tinny in the back of the mouth. The roasted bitterness is not the best flavor I have had, but it's not terrible. It's the sour tang on the sides and under my tongue that is offputting.
Mouthfeel is pretty nice, medium with enough carbonation to tingle the entire mouth, smooth but not overly creamy.
If not for the odd aftertaste, this would be a good session porter. However, I doubt that I would seek this out if Anchor, SN, or my favorite Highland were available.


Feb 22, 2006
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DarkerTheBetter from Minnesota

3.23/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer came a clear, dark brown with some burgundy highlights and a very little head at all. Smelled slightly of candy sugar with a sour sweetness and some nuts. Tasted initially like a cola that quickly faded into a woody sour. Finished with almost a candy apple sourness. The mouth feel was light to medium bodied and sticky with a light carbonation. Over all, the candy sweetness was just a little too much to enjoy.

Feb 02, 2006
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Gueuzedude from Arizona

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

Pours with a large, fluffy, light brown head that sits atop a a brilliantly clear deep, deep amber colored beer (really almost black) that shows bright amber highlights around the edges. The aroma is a mix of lightly roasted fruit (like raisins and concentrated plums) and soft roast notes made up of lightly roasted coffee and toasted malt. I am really quite surprised how fruity the aroma is, I was expecting something a bit more clean and malt focused, shows you what I know.

Wow, the beer is incredibly well carbonated and almost vaporizes as it hit my tongue. I am certainly going to need to de-gas this puppy to enjoy it. Ok that is done, what is the beer like? The beer is lightly sweet with a forward fruitiness that reminds me of raisins, figs and perhaps a bit of ripe plum. There is a saccharine sweetness that carries through almost to the end of this beer. The malt really becomes noticeable towards the end of a sip, there is a drying roasted malt note, a hint of chocolate, and a definite bready-toasted note that reminds me of crusty bread pulled fresh from the oven.

As the beer warms up the fruitiness really starts to take over, it almost becomes a bit too much. This beer seems a bit thin on the palate as well, probably a byproduct of the over carbonation.

Dec 10, 2005
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pentathlete from Virginia

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

Ruby brown, nearly opaque with a huge tan head. Sturdy ring and islands of bubbles were left after a few minutes. Nose is watery malt, the barley smelling lightly roasted, yet nothing stands out. Taste is toasted malts with some bitter hops overseeing it all. Again, though, nothing too amazing. Mouthfeel is far too thin for the style. Very drinkable. This is the kind of brew to introduce someone to porter who is afraid of "dark" beers. It is harmless, has no distinct character, but is decidedly different from a generic lager.

Nov 12, 2005
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yelterdow from New Jersey

3.23/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On cask at Andy's tonight, quite the surprise.

Served in a nonic at approximately 55 degrees fahrenheit .

Appearance- Dark brown with ruby tones throughout, relatively moderate head that settled tightly to a thin mat.

Smell- Mellow notes of chocolate and coffee, with a subtle malt character and almost no hoppiness. Even at this recommended temperature, there was barely anything to comment on.

Taste- Slightly bitter dark beer that brings forth a subdued roastiness that clamors for recognition. Just an average example, IMO.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- On cask this is very smooth, as might be expected. The texture saves this one, since the physical and olfactory experience along with the taste is blah.

Oct 19, 2005
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MuddyFeet from North Carolina

3.3/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a thin looking deep brown with lots of foamy head. Lace covers the inside of the glass. Nose is full of toasted and burnt malts. Flavor is loaded with burnt coffee grounds and dark chocolate. The malts are very dry in this beer. Not much in the way of hops. Mouthfeel is thin and kind of disappointing. Best served warmish.

Aug 09, 2005
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jakester from Pennsylvania

3.94/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is from a sampler case from FF. Expiration date clearly marked on the case!! YEA!!

Pours a deep mahogany/brown with a beige head which quickly falls to small islands and a ring. Carbonation evident. No lacing observed.

Aroma is faint but perceptable nutty/chocolatey malts, very faint spicy hops. Pleasant, but not much there. As this beer warms, the aromas get better.

Flavor is nutty/chocolatey, kind of sweet, with bittering hops trying to balance the malt. This could be a little more robust, IMO. It is clean, no off flavors. I have to admit, this kind of grows on you as you drink. Not a bad beer. Aftertaste is chocolate.

Mouthfeel is sweet and creamy, slight tingle from carbonation. Nice. Finish is long and smooth.

This beer definitely improves as it warms. My beer fridge is 45 degrees F, and that's a little too cold for this beer. (Any warmer, and the mold just grows and grows)

Jul 22, 2005
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kmpitz2 from Tennessee

3.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to NeroFiddled for this brew.

This pours a slightly reddish dark brown color with a broken ring of head over top. The nose is slightly chocolatey and nutty roasted. I'd like a little more deep roasted notes as opposed to the nutty tones. The flavor is better, with a nice chocolate base and light roasted notes on the side. Not as intense as I would like, but the flavors are really nice. The feel is moderate, maybe a touch lighter with a modest carbonation. This is easily a session brew. It is easy to drink and enjoyable. A nice overall beer.

Jun 22, 2005
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clvand0 from Kentucky

3.87/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to kmpitz2 for sharing and NeroFiddled for sending it to him. Pours a dark brown color with a small head that falls fast and doesn't leave much lacing on the glass. The aroma is very malty with lots of malty goodness and nutty tones. The flavor has a surprising light sweetness, but has a great nutty and chocolate taste. Enjoyable. The body is a bit light, but still ok and the drinkability is quite good.

Jun 22, 2005
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chOAKbarrell from Maryland

3.5/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Not much of a head coming out of the bottle. Actually almost non-existant.
The rest of the appearance is decent - a richly dark color. Smell is just okay - the alcohol scent is pretty up-front & present. The taste is the best part of this beer. Good solid porter flavor. Mouthfeel = okay. Not great. A little too much carbonation. A little too thin-bodied, as well. The drinkability gets a decent rating, because if you want a porter, or just a dark beer in general, you can probably drink several of these without feeling too full or bloated. Overall, Flying Fish Porter is pretty much average. If you can get it for a cheap price, go ahead, but dont go out of your way for it.

May 23, 2005
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crookedhalo from Pennsylvania

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

12 oz. bottle pours up a dark mahogany color with a volumnous tan head that just doesn't die. Some roasty, nutty and grassy aromas with hints of caramel and grain husks. Not quite as roasty as a lot of other U.S. brewed porters. This porter is one that leans more towards a earthier, fruitier, hoppier, moreso scorchy than roasty-type of porter. Lightly smoky. Not bad, not really what I was expecting though. It's a bit like Yards' General Washington's Porter, in thesense that it has a historic porter kind of feel. Not my favorite, but not bad.

Mar 13, 2005
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meathookjones from Virginia

3.4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This poured out a semi opaque brownish black with a decent sized tan head. Ok lacing was left around the glass as it was consumed. Aroma was of chocolate and a roasted malt with a hint of earthy bitterness. Taste was more of the same with chocolate malt dominating over weaker notes of coffee, roasted malt and a light hoppiness. Slightly bitter bite on the finish as well. Mouthfeel is about your average porter. Drinkability was ok. Solid beer that has no real flaws but is a bit light on the flavor and aroma.

Dec 03, 2004
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beveragecaptain from New Jersey

3.48/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown with a reddish tinge. Light brown head that leaves lacing on the edge of the glass. Smells lightly of coffee. Malty flavor with chocolate notes, but little hop presence. The weak mouthfeel detracts from an otherwise solid beer. Still, I found this to be a decent version. From a brewery that has disappointed so many times, this is a suprisingly tasty porter.

Dec 03, 2004
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WVbeergeek from West Virginia

2.8/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Dark with ruby highlights thick two inch tan head not bad leaves little or no lacing but it's ok. Aroma: Wild grain not subdued to the chocolate at all much adorned with chocolate amd coffee with wild accents leaves me slightly satsfied not bad. Taste: Mild chocolate woody barrier between balance and perfection lacks so much for my tastes wow. Mouthfeel: Not much to note here other than medocrity wow I'm almost apalled and that takes alot. Drinkability: Please I'm good no more for me please it's not a real porter accept it for what it is.

Nov 23, 2004
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Gavage from Nevada

3.91/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice dark ruby brown color with a 2+" thick creamy tan head. Nice thick lacing develops through the drink. The aroma is of chocolate and malt. The flavor has a very pronounced chocolate tone, followed by a mild roasted nut tone. Some mild bitterness and a hint of black plum round this out.

The mouthfeel is slightly thinner than expected, and is smooth at the start. The finish is mildly crisp and the chocolate tones last long on the tongue. Nicely drinkable.

Oct 15, 2004
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Gusler from Arizona

3.95/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer after its departing the 12-ounce brown bottle sets in the glass a deep brown to almost black and the head prosperous and creamy, the color a toothsome light tan, the lace a firm blanket to snuggle the glass. Nose has a bittersweet chocolate aroma with light toasted grains, fresh and crisp, clean to the senses with the start sweet and nice grain profile, top is medium in feel. Finish is mildly acidic and the hops delectable in their spiciness, quite dry aftertaste, a very nice representative to the style.

Oct 04, 2004
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aracauna from Georgia

3.48/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This one’s the color of a dark color. Head booms out of control, but eventually fades to a comfortable drinking size. When cold, this one’s a little bland, but it picks up steam as it warms. Dark chocolate and brown sugar make up the malt part of the flavor, but the esters are surprisingly strong, being bananas one sip, artificial grape the next and fig after that. Definitely does not need to be served cold.

Jun 22, 2004
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Billolick from New York

3.65/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brownish, near black, minimal tan head, minimal lacing. Light chocolate and cocoa in the nose. Medium bodied and light carbonation. moderate chocolate, roasted malt, raisins. Not super flavorful or complex. All the FF beers seem a bit thin on flavor and character. Good newbie beer. Decent session brew. Middle of the road porter.

Jun 06, 2004
Porter from Flying Fish Brewing Company
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 69 ratings