Samuel Adams Honey Porter | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

635 Reviews
Samuel Adams Honey PorterSamuel Adams Honey Porter

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: English Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.45%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-12-2002

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Reviews: 635 | Ratings: 913
Photo of kylehay2004
3.67/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Half finger rapidly dissipating head. Very dark but getting light through.

S: Coffee, touch of honey, smokey

T: Smokey with a tough of sweet but not so much honey. Nutty and earthy notes.

M: Moderate to high carbonation. Medium to high carbonation.

Overall: Not a huge fan of this one. Honey just doesnt seem to come through in the honey brews I have tried. It has more of a smokey taste than I like.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.7/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This has the color of a porter pouring out as a dark rich brownish color. The head is a light brown color and fizzles away to just a ring around the glass. The aroma is deep and roasted with a really interesting sweetness in there from the honey. The taste of the beer is slighty burnt or roasted in the beginning and settles down in the aftertaste as a sweet and elegant mix of the roasted malts and the honey. The mouthfeel is on the lighter side for a dark brew.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.83/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've heard much about this beer, but only recently has it been distributed to Central Kentucky. Turns out to be a fine beer. A moderate to light Porter character shows light (Columbian) coffee, a hint of chocolate, mildly roasted grains and a lot of yeasty flavors from the fermentation. The body seems light, maybe toward Brown Ale proportions. The honey adds a subtle, underlining sweetness, perfumy aroma, and a delicate spiciness. Finishes a bit on the astringent side...seems to be typical of roasted grains in a lighter body. Otherwise a fine beer.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
3.92/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Wow, this is one robust beer for sure as the label states. Usually when you see flavors in front of porters they are kind of afterthoughts, but not this one! This one is full honey ahoy, almost too much I think. It's a very sweet porter so make sure you really like honey before you try this one. Luckily I do like the flavor, but I felt it was a tad overbearing. Also, this beer had some terrific lacing, very sexy for a beer.

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Photo of brentk56
3.68/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a burnished brown color with ruby highlights; the rocky head sticks well and leaves plenty of lace

Smell: Roasted tones compete with sweet honey; a touch of malted milk balls

Taste: Starts out with a molasses cake flavor with honey tones building by mid-palate; not a mead like honey but an unfermented honey aspect; after the swallow, there is a bit of a hop and coffee presence to tone it down, but overall, this beer is rather sweet

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Just a bit to sweet for me; lacking offsetting complexity

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Photo of zeff80
3.65/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out black with brownish tints and tan, foamy, one-finger head. Left some lace.

S - It smelled of honey and caramel.Quite sweet.

T - It tasted very sweet and buttery. The honey flavor was noticeable behind a strong roasted malt taste. There was also a mild spice.

M - It was soft and creamy. A medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a pretty good porter. It really has a unique blend of flavors with the honey, caramel, roasted malt and hop spice.

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Photo of nickfl
3.91/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Black body with dark ruby highlights. Three fingers of creamy tan head with good retention.

S - Prominent, floral honey aroma. Rasins and malt. No real hop presence to speak of.

T - Mild roasted malts followed closely by strong honey character. Finishes with lingering honey, malt bitterness and just a hint of hops.

M - Medium body with mild carbonation.

D - The honey character in this beer is exceptional. It blends well with the darker malts and dominates the flavor profile of the beer. I can't see myself wanting more than one in a sitting but it is a very enjoyable beer.

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Photo of mothman
4.2/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into Sam Adams Sensory Glass

Pours a 2 finger pillow top head. Good retention. Think lacing splattered about the glass. Color is a deep brown/dark mahogany.

Aroma is mainly malts, honey, and carmel. It is a very roasted smell to it.

Taste is very rich. A lot of honey and carmel. Very malty and overall, very flavorful. The aftertaste is of coffee. Unique twist to this beer.

Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth. Easy to drink. Leaves a slight dry aftertaste.

Overall, this was one of the first craft beers I had about 4 years ago and I loved it then and I still love it now. Very flavorful and pretty easy to drink. I highly recommend this amazing porter.

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Photo of oberon
3.66/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The first chance to try this beer,poured into my Red Oak pint glass a deep dark brown with some ruby-like hue when held up to the light a large fluffy 2 finger almond colored head atop that left multiple sheets of lace behind as it settles into a creamy mass.Rather light aromas some roastiness bitter chocolate and the heather honey lingers nicely,a tad thin and fizzy in the mouth but not distracting.Flavors start out mild but become fuller as it warms a bit lightly sweet and definantly roasty a real honey flavor profile shows in the appetizing finish finish .Not the most complex porter on earth but its drinkable and just sweet enough,I like it.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.63/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Walls of thin, sticky lace coat the glass throughout the entire serving as you drain it, sip by sip. The tan head maintains a thin but solid surface covering; and the clear, deep mahogany body glows with a crimson and ruby cast.

Some honey is found in the nose, along with some almost scorched sugar and a whiff of gently vinous dark fruit, perhaps plums; and the honey returns much more solidly in the flavor.

It's not chocolatey, although there is an edge to it, but mainly it displays deeply caramelized sugar, a dark fruitiness, a smear of ceral-like graininess, and honey. It's mildly roasty, but coupled with the dark sugar even that seems softened. The honey comes and goes, appearing in different places... sometimes at the start, and often lingering into the finish. The bitterness is more than firm, solid but not bold, but dull, perhaps muted by the honey sweetness. It finishes kind of dull and muddied, with some sticky honey (that's not necessarily sugary, but coating, and with honey flavor), and a solid bitterness and some dark malt acidity. It's very nice upfront, but offers a sloppy finish.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.95/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a dark brown with just the tiniest amount of red highlights showing around the bottom. Finger width of tan head that retains well and leaves a nice latticework of lacing down the sides of the glass. The aroma is surprisingly deep wiht notes of chocolate and coffee with just the tiniest amount of sweet honey in the background. I also picked up just a smidge of heat as well.

The taste is roasted malt, sweet chocolate, and coffee. The honey makes itself known with just a splash in the finish followed up by some dry hop bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a mellow creamy feel.

This was a nicely done and drinkable Porter from Sam Adams. I was especially surprised just how deep the roasted chocolate came through. It's definitely worth a try.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.73/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a dark brown color with a thin, but foamy off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thin and even lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of honey, spice, a little chocolate and some hops.

T: The taste is sweet but not too sweet. The honey flavor is certainly there, but it’s not overdone. There are also flavors of roasted malt, dark fruit, spice and a touch of chocolate. This one doesn’t have the hoppiness that most Sam Adams beers have, but I think that’s a good thing for this type of beer. It also doesn’t have much of a chocolate or coffee flavor that most porters have either, which makes it a little awkward.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium body but light for the style, medium carbonation, finish is dry and slightly sticky.

D: Tasty so far as it’s something different, goes down easy, just a little bit filling, it’s a good beer but I prefer a little substance and a little more flavor when I go for a porter.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.65/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours out a dark brown body with burgundy highlights and a medium-sized tan head.

Smell: Light aroma of honey and roasted malt.

Taste: Honey sweetness dovetails with a light coffee flavor and hints of dark chocolate. For me, there's no appreciable hop character, just a minor hop bite near the end. However, this beer finishes sweet.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Tingy, lively carbonation.

Drinkability: Though somewhat artificial tasting, this beer gives the impression of buttersctoch candy. Seems overly filtered, too.

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

Ruddy chestnut with bright orange trim (on the coaster), uniform dark crimson (when backlit with sunshine). The head is the highlight of the appearance. It's large and beautifully creamy, like vigorously whipped butter. It's also an exceptional lace maker. Shotgun-riddled sheets stick from the top edge downward.

I can definitely appreciate honey in the nose. I love the fact that it's neither too subtle, nor too prominent, and is a great complement to the porterishness of the rest of the aroma. There's more of a dark earthiness present than there is chocolate or coffee. This promises to be an interesting, original offering. Let's hope it's also a delicious one.

I had my doubts about whether BBC could successfully pull off a honey porter. Not because I doubt their brewing talents, but because getting the combination of flavors just right in a beer like this probably isn't easy. They've managed to do it, though, and have created a wonderful beer in the process. No wonder Honey Porter was the winner of the second 'Beer Lover's Choice' campaign. The people don't always know best, but they did in this case.

The commingling of roasted malt (cocoa, dark caramel), Scottish heather honey and earthy English hops (Fuggles, East Kent Goldings) is a beautiful thing. Sweetness and bitterness are as well-balanced as the flavors themselves. There are only a handful of Sam Adams beers that I like more than this one.

I could tell the mouthfeel would be pleasurable by the sound the beer made when splashing into the glass. It's lightly creamy with an airy expansiveness and a perfect amount of soft carbonation. I wouldn't change a thing.

Samuel Adams Honey Porter well deserves the 'Brewmaster's Collection' moniker. Just as I suspected from the nose, it's an interesting, original creation that just about everyone should like. As far as I'm concerned, the craft beer movement owes a debt of gratitude to the Boston Beer Company. The combination of quality and availability in most of what they brew has saved me more than once.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.68/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A – Poured a nice golden dark amber, defiantly a hint of amber in this, with a mostly brown hue though. A nice two inch head rises atop of this one and then settles back to about an inch which pretty much hung around at that height thoughout the remainder of the session. Great carbonation coming up from the bottom was easily visiple through the semi transparent brown liquid. Once the side glass lace kicked in and started dripping, things got a tade more difficult to visualize though. Overall a pretty decent looker.

S – Aroma was very rich and sweet. I really did not detect and honey, so if it was there it was quickly overshadowed by your typical portesque aromas. Lots of roasted nuts and a touch of caramel were clearly evident as was a slight grassy or hoppy aroma floating around in the back. A decent overall aroma here.

T – Sort of a very light porter for me here. It was more like a lager, or brown ale if I had to get technical about it. Just did not have the fullness one usually sees in a porter. A quick hit of caramel up front was easily noticeable, followed by a strong touch of roasted malts. A nice grassy and earthy presense then tickled around and ended as a nice dry back settled in. Again not so sure why this is a honey porter, as it did not really have any honey hints in it, nor did it really come across as full as a porter usually does.

M – A little light here I have to admit. I was kinda hoping for a bit more here as It just seemed very thin, at least for the style. Now this would have been spot on for a brown ale, but for a porter a little thin. Still excellent carbonation though really pulled it through here, and the flavor was nice, just not what I was hoping for. No really oiley or slickness to it.

D –Very nice, it was like I said very light so it was very easy to put down. Good flavor, but not overwhelming helped as well. Could easily be a session ale and I am guessing that is what they were going for, as they usually do on most of their ales.

Overall this one was a mixed bag. If I review it as a brown ale I would have to score it fairly high as it had a nice feel and a good all around flavor profile, however if I stick to the porter it just came off a bit too thin for my liking. I would have thought it could have been a little bit fuller. Even still, excellent session ale and a worthy choice in the series for sure. I would not turn one down if it was offered. I also would not by a sixer either, so definitely a bit of a mixed bag, but worth a try.

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Photo of russpowell
3.66/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

BBD of Aug 07, pours chestnut/mahogany with 2 fingers of fluffy brown sand colored head. Really good head renetion & good lacing

S: Sweetness (brown sugar) & light roasted malt

T: Roasted malt, choclate & a hint of sasparilla (sic) up front. Molasess, a hint of coffee & brown sugar follow. As this warms dryness asserts itself. Coffee & a hint of coccoa & along with intense dryness in the finish

MF: Medium bodied, but rich with low carbonation

Drinks fairly easy, not my favorite porter but a good, if over dry (too much honey) effort

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Photo of Slatetank
4.08/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Served a slightly below room temperature in a generic pint glass
Rapidly cascading tan bubbles gather to form a spledid head that gradually settles leaving a minimal amount of lace.
A very dark brown shade with garnet hues.

S - Lots of roasted malt odor and sweet honey aroma shadowing the grains. Roastiness with sweet echoes of floral hop odors that tantalize.

M - Sweetish with lively carbonation, nicely nuanced roastiness is smoothed out by soft honey creaminess in the finish

T - Roasty Chocolate flavors with subtle coffee notes and nutty dryness leads to a sweet round fullness that expands in the tail end with polish and finesse. No over the top honey or cloying sweetness, just a great accent to a really tasty porter.

D - A great exampole of what tastes can be achieved when honey is used with skill. Quaffable and smooth with traces of alcohol in the taste and lightly spicy hop adding to the overall depth.

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Photo of smcolw
3.91/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful rocky head with plentiful lace on the glass.

Wow, the honey smell is quite strong. I was expecting it to be far more subtle. Needless to say, it is sweet. There is nearly none of the typical porter smells.

The taste is completely different from the smell--lots of cocoa, little honey or sweetness. Enough hop to create a bitter finish with chocolate in the background. Very complex. Good body and carbonation.

I like this beer although I find the smell to be a bit deceiving from what you ultimately drink.

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Photo of Jason
3.36/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Sample from the "Beer Lover's Choice" vote. 12oz brown bottle with a freshness date on the label.

A- Dark brown with ruby highlights, great head retention as the lace leave a spiderweb-like trail down the glass.

S- Slight roasted malt, raw honey comb. Caramelized / burnt sugar.

T&M- Raw honey all throughout ... almost too much of a honey character. Full bodied and very smooth, lush mouth feel. Mild roasted malt flavor and mild on the hops, barely enough bitterness to balance. Finishes very sweet.

D- Not bad but not the Honey Porter I remember ... I am sure my tastes have changed but this one comes off a bit too sweet.

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Photo of stakem
3.89/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a brown color that has a bit of redness about it as well. Can just barely see through this one. Has a slightly tanned head that fades fairly quick and leaves a fair amount of lacing on the glass. Nose has some honey sweetness in it as well as some slight chocolate notes. Taste is a bit metallic but also has some chocolate and coffee mixed in there as well. The yeast is noticable in this beer. Finishes crisp with a bit of bitterness from the hops and barley. Mouthfeel is medium on this one and carbination is tingly. Overall drinkability is quite good.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.78/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beers appearance is great large rocky textured tan head above a dark ruby almost black body with much eye appeal. Aroma roasted dark malts creamy sweetness charred roasty character with herbal hops no overt honey tones but subtle mellow sweetness is there. Flavor is clean charred malts give a bitterness creamy overall with a honey finish to it hidden sweetness among the dark roasted barley malts. Mouthfeel is medium bodied even light for some porters but carbonation levels are great no need to worry. Drinkability is solid a staple for most beer drinkers into dark beer living in WV we don't have many options but this is a great even porter that I would welcome anytime.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.61/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark chocolate amber. One finger of creamy head that held with some nice retention.

S - Mild. Toasty with some sugar and light dried fruits.

T - Malt, toast, molasses, and just a touch of smoky bitterness. Slightly watery aftertaste.

M - Body is a tad light, but there's enough there to hold the beer together.

D - Very drinkable. None of the characteristics are harsh or overbearing.

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Photo of jwc215
3.48/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle, best before June 2007

Pours deep borwn with a rocky tan head that slowly thins and sticks around.

The smell is of sweet dark malt and honey.

The taste is of honey upfront that lingers around well into the aftertaste. Beyond the herbal honey sweetness lies more sweet maltiness that is offset by a pinch of bitter coffee. There is something beyond the honey, but not enough to even it out. Sweet finish with just a nod to the bitter hops that stay well-subdued.

The feel is medium to full bodied with a soft, almost buttery, smoothness.

I expected a honey sweetness, and got it, but some more balance would have been nice. A coffee-ish porter was present, enough to give it a decent taste when mixed with the honey, but not enough to round it out. Not a bad brew for but the honey sweetness was a bit too much for me, personally.

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Photo of tempest
3.48/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Oh, this is a nice looking beer. A dark brown body with a tall light tan head that leaves thick lacing. The rest of the beer, unfortunately, is less impressive - though still good.

The aroma is of sweet bready grains and honey. The flavor expands on the honey, adding a small, but crisp hop bite with subtle chocolate and caramel malt flavors. The flavor is a touch plain, but the overall feel has a great balance between the honey sweetness, dry malts and hops. Worth a try if you like honey, but this can't stand up to most porters.

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

The beer pours a dark brown color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a rich, roasted scent that boasts of chocolate and special roast malts. It's creamy with a slight honey presence. The taste is good. It has a dry roasted flavor that goes down easy and finishes smooth. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good porter. It's nothing too awesome, but I enjoyed it and would buy it again.

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Samuel Adams Honey Porter from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.69 out of 5 based on 913 ratings.
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