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

913 Ratings
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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Ratings: 913 |  Reviews: 635
Photo of cheers2beers
3.35/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: This beer appears to have a black liquid, but when held to the light you can notice a ruby tint within. The rocky and slightly off-white colored head rose up about two and a half fingers high and settled to an inch. Nice head retention. Minimal amount of laceing and you can also see some beading on the inside.

Smell: The aromas are woody, grapenuts, semi-sweet chocolate malts, vague honey, oats can be detected, and only a small trace of hops can be found. No alcohol in the nose.

Taste: The flavor has some of the same characterists as the nose did such as chocolate notes, the woodiness and grapenuts are still noticable. A little alcohol is there,but nothing potent. Slight bittering hops in the finish.

Mouthfeel: This is sweet,creamy and smooth with a dry bitter finish. Medium bodied with decent amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: One thing I like about Sam Adams beers is that they are easily accessable, fairly cheap,"for craft beers" and they are usually highly sessionable. This one is not bad by any means, but as said above its just another go to beer.


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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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Photo of 2wheeledpirate
3.28/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A very dark reddish brown color. A one finger head which barely survived to the end. The honey aroma is very apparent, but seems to disappear in the flavor until the "aftertaste." This porter is lighter in feel than it's dark color would suggest, and has very little carbonation. The honey is a nice touch and I would definately have another (which I wouldn't say about most porters.) You can always counton Sam.

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Photo of mattcrill
3.31/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aroma: A mildly sweet grainy note up front. Low fruity esters. A touch of coffee with cream. Pretty light in the aroma.

Appearance: Shoe leather brown middle with chocolate edging. A creamy off-white head develops and sticks to the glass.

Flavor: Mild sweet grainy notes persist. Just a touch of carmelly sweetness and a touch of roasted grains. Balance is toward the dry side.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with low carbonation. Finishes dry and just a touch astringent.

Overall impression: Well crafted, nothing off, but very safe. Probably a safe "gateway" porter. I'm not sure I get the honey in this one but there is a definite sweetness that is detectable on the palate. I'd take anything from SA on any day of the week. I know they are more "mainstream" but they work for me. Worth a try at least once.

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Photo of adams82
3.52/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark brown with ruby highlights, produces a small off white head. Smells of of coffee like roast upfront, sweet and roasty as it lingers. Tastes slightly sweet and roasty with some bitterness derived from the roasted malt. Notes of coffee and brown sugar meld into the roasted malt flavor, and of course a tinge of honey, finishing with a nice hoppiness... the residual sweetness/roastiness sticks around as well. Smooth as silk, almost chewy and very easy to drink.

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Photo of BryanCarey
3.35/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Samuel Adams Honey Porter pours to a dark brown color with some burgundy redness. The head of foam on this beer is large, solid, and lumpy and it makes for a positive first impression. The nose on this beer is bread- like, roasty, honey- like, and interesting.

This porter offers some good, complex flavors like slightly roasted malt, honey, and baked bread. This is followed by an herbal/spicy taste of hops that helps to provide balance. The honey stays with the taste from beginning to end, making for a beer that is sweeter than average.

I can remember tasting Samuel Adams Honey Porter in the past and from what I remember, this new version of Samuel Adams Honey Porter doesn’t taste like the beer of old. The original Honey Porter was slightly fuller in body and was a little more honey- accented. This newer version isn’t the robust porter that the label claims- it is actually a medium- bodied brew and while the honey taste is obvious, it isn’t as evident as I remember. It’s a good tasting beer that comes up short in one main category: It fullness. The label claims it’s a robust porter with a full body but this is not the case. It’s a little thinner than the Samuel Adams Honey Porter from the past but it is still a tasty beer in its own right.

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Photo of July2Nov
3.97/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Beautiful dark color, when put up to a light, it has a ruby & amber tint. Looks like a glass of coke.

Smell: You can smell hints of honey coming through near the end.

Taste: If you like honey, then this is what you'll be getting along with the porter.

Mouthfeel: The honey leaves that sweet aftertaste....which in my book, is excellent.

Drinkability: Great taste that will have you telling your friends to, "try this out".

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

Medium pour into a shaker produces a voluminous, visually impressive head. It’s a rocky one, almost orangey-tan, and with plenty of clingy lacing. More than any other beer I’ve ever poured, this one looks like a root-beer float! The brew itself is a brilliant crimson-chestnut in color. Nose is a bit subdued, but there’s honey in there you betcha, alongside pale and dark malts. Smells a bit sweeter than I expected. I did pour this cold, so I let it warm a bit. Smooth on the tongue, with a combination bitter, tangy, musty flavor. Sweetens, dries, and smoothes out midway through the palate, and finishes with an interesting, lingering aggregate, part roasted malts, part unctious honey, part bittering hops. Body is on-style, fairly light and very drinkable. Not nearly as sweet on the palate as the nose would suggest, and while the honey is a prominent flavor overall, I would imagine that it's an acquired taste in terms of a flavoring for this style of beer. As with coffee-flavored porters, I can usually put down one or more if so inclined, but I guess prefer flavored stouts! Maybe not a standalone brew, but I can't think of what to pair it with, food-wise. Definitely worth a try, and superbly executed.

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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 afinepilsner
3.61/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz brown bottle

Samuel Adams Honey Porter was a mahogany color with good clarity. The tan head started out thick and rocky, than gradually receded to a thin layer, leaving some lacing behind. The aroma was mainly honey. The taste was a nice blend of honey, malt, and hops. It was medium bodied with good carbonation. Drinkability was above average. It's a decent beer to have occasionally.

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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 rowew
3.61/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 12 oz longneck, typical Boston Beer packaging. Best by date notched on the side. I'm a little leary of this one since I don't usually like the taste of fermented honey in beer - but I had to give it a try.

Appearance: Dark brown with a bit of ruby around the edges, large off white head fades to a bit of lacing.

Smell: Not getting a ton of aroma here - some roasted flavors and caramel, a hint of sweetness.

Taste: Hmm - ok, this has more of a raw honey flavor than the fermented (think mead) that I was expecting. Roasted flavors dominate, with some honey sweetness balancing things out.

Overall impression: Solid porter - the honey adds a bit of interesting sweetness, and plenty of other flavors to keep it interesting.

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Photo of brdc
3.56/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Expiration date July 2007.
Nice looking dark beer with a long lasting tan head.
Smell is rather faint, although good - it has some roaste malts, honey as expected, and hops.
Taste is bitter, mostly roasted malts to open, followed by a mild sweetness from the honey, and then the cleansing, dry hops.
Good mouthfeel, medium-bodied, and easy to drink.
A good porter, although not special.

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Photo of arnulfooxblood
3.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle.

Appearance--Dark reddish brown, nearly opaque. Frothy light tan head with nice retention.

Smell--Toasted malts, faint coffee characteristics.

Taste--Not as robust as it smells. Actually this is a pretty mellow porter. Definitely not as dry as most porters. Sweet undertones make this an interesting beer.

Drinkability--Because it is a more subtle porter than most, this is a very drinkable beer. Probably a good introduction to the style for someone who isn't overly fond of strong tasting beers.

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Photo of BigJTrucker
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this 12oz bottle up as part of a "Brewmaster's Collection".

I've tried various 'Porter' brews in the past, and havent been overly impressed. But i figured i'd revisit the style, as by beer tasting experience has expanded greatly since then. I'm glad i did.

Pours a deep mahoany color. I'm sure if i poured it into the appropriate glass, head retention would be much better, but in my globe glass, the head settles fairly quickly to form a collar around the glass with some foam settled in the center of the glass. Smells absolutely beautiful. Honey and toasted malt flavors are pronounced, but not overpoweringly so. Just the right amount of hop bitterness, and honey taste to complement it. Slight drying mouthfell, but nothing that would deserve any lower of a score in that department. Very easy to drink, not like any porter i've had in the past. This brew is singlehandedly responsible for removing the words "I hate porters" from my vocabulary. VERY WELL DONE!

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Photo of far333
3.63/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Deep mahogany, not quite opaque, with ochre highlights around the edges. A half inch of bumpy frothy foam sits atop and lingers long. The foam leaves sticky rings and winding legs rising up the glass as I sip.

Light smell of chalky cocoa, a bit of hops, some faint malt.

Flavors of sweet malt, cocoa and some smokey charred wood. The honey is understated, I might not be able to pick it out if I wasn't looking for it. Raisins and plums linger in the aftertaste.

Full and creamy mouthfeel, a little chalky and tannic, not overly carbed. Pretty drinkable, but not overly complex.

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Photo of bennetj17
3.18/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark amber color, with thin, tan foam that yields to a decent ring. Notes of honey-wheat bread in the aroma, with a light hint of cinnamon. Nice, but a bit weak. Lots of ashed/smoked maltiness in the flavor but it comes out tasting watery. There is a mild bitterness that lingers on, but unfortunately it's not very pleasant . The honey notes are very mild in the flavor and don't "fit in" real well. The body is medium thick, perhaps a bit watery, with medium enough carbonation.

I was expecting alot more from a beer voted back into production due to its popularity. There was not a good balance of flavors here, and the bitter finish did not come out well. Not recommended...

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Photo of sinstaineddemon
2.91/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - dark mahogany brown, thick rocky mocha head, with vary faint and rare carbonation

S - sour coffee aroma, metallic, with some background roasted palates

T - a weak start, with alcohol sharpness, some coffee flavors, and a sharp finish, cannot pick out the honey

M&D - easy down, a good college bar choice in a BMC world, not SA best offering but above tolerable

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Photo of PhillyMonk
3.16/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Found this beer at a hole-in-the wall bar that had little else. I had never tried this one before it was discontinued the first time, so was trying it for the first time.

Poured a clear, deep amber-brown with loads of cream colored head. Smell was surprisingly faint with some malts and honey overtones...pleasant, but distant. Taste was sweet, malty, with a distinct honey, almost syrupy finish. Mouthfeel was decent -- sweet, with moderate carbonation. This beer was pretty drinkable -- I could have had two, but can't imagine this as much of a session beer

This beer is definitely worth giving a shot. I'm a big fan of thier holiday porter and expected something a little more malty and a little less sweet, but I guess this beer was true to its name. The quality is there, and it's something different to try, but it goes down as middle-of-the-road as Sam Adams beers are concerned for me.

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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 BeefyMee
3.24/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Big fluffy head that dissipated in a funky way but had a nice tan color. Body is a dark transparent ruby.

Smell: Nothing much here. Some honey but not a whole lot and thats about it.

Taste: The honey definitely comes through stronger but there is also a bit of an unpleasant metallic taste. A little bready with chocolate malt in the aftertaste. All in all, it's a good flavor but not very impressive.

Mouthfeel: Good consistency hampered by an offputting tanginess.

Drinkability: Fairly drinkable as there is nothing too annoying. After two or three, though, the charm of the honey might start to wear thin.

Beef Notes: Seeing that the old version of this beer had some high praise and the Holiday Porter is nothing short of delicious, I was rather excited to try this. It turned out to be just a little disappointing but still a solid beer. Try it at least once if you can.

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Photo of mjd83goblue
2.82/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz single bottle for $1.69. Seeing this back in sixers now, so thought I'd give it a shot.

A: Pours an opaque dark brownish/reddish with two fingers of rocky head.

S: Smell is predominently raw honey. Some roasted malt if you really try.

T: More balanced than the smell. A nice roasted body with a definite honey taste, but not as overbearing as in the smell. Finishes sweet w/ some burnt honey.

M: Creamy but a little thin

D: Not bad, not as heavy as many porters. A little sweet.

Very 'average'. Nothing bad, but nothing inspiring.

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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 TexIndy
3.11/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle with a best by date into a pint glass. It had a dark color that was deep mahogany when held up to a light. It had a pretty good tan head that slowly settled into a foam. Some lacing. The smell was all honey with not much else coming to the front. The taste was just OK. It was basically a bland porter with a huge dollop of honey thrown in. Mouthfeel was good. Overall, it's just not a very exciting beer. It falls way short of being a flavorful out there beer and is just too bland and honeyish for a session beer. Don't recommend. (3, NA-BOT, Tie, O)

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