London Porter | Meantime Brewing Company Limited

286 Reviews
no score
Send samples
London PorterLondon Porter

Brewed by:
Meantime Brewing Company Limited
England, United Kingdom

Style: English Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by GCBrewingCo on 08-28-2005

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 286 | Ratings: 456
Photo of bark
4.16/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

The liquid is clear; the colour black with a hint of wine-red. The thick brown head leaves some lacing.

The smell is bitter with some roasted notes and a hint of smoke and a touch of strong wine.

The taste is complex with sourish matured flavours. I found some fruits and coffee. The aftertaste is quite mild with dry notes of tobacco.

The carbonation is mild; there are almost no bubbles at all.

An interesting historic brew.

 441 characters

Photo of doppelmeup
4.07/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured this from a caged 750ml bottle into pint glass.

Very pretty pour with a whtie, creamy inch thick head that slowly resolved to a thin film. This porter was much lighter than other porters I've had, which tended to be almost black. This beer was a lighter brown with hints of ruby red. It looked to me more like a brown ale. Of course, the bottle labeling states that this is the desired color, so who am I to argue!

The smell was unmistakeably porter. Roasted malt, light coffee, light chocolate, lactic acid, a bit chalky, even some faint crushed graham crackers.

The flavor was lighter than other porters I've tried. Slightly malty, a bit sour, a bit of lactic acid as a milk stout might have. Not really coffee or chocolate flavored, but definite roasted malts.

Mouthfeel was moderately thick with a decent amount of carbonation, but the bubbles were very tiny so rather than tingle the mouth the beer was quite light in body. Crisp aftertaste.

Overall, a very interesting interpretation of the style. Quite a bit different than other porters I've had, but not in a bad way. I think this is a good beer, but on the pricey side. I paid $7.00 for the bottle but got it marked down from $9.

 1,211 characters

Photo of GreenCard
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: dark brown with ruby highlights, almost opaque, thick layer of spongey tan foam, great head retention, lace

Aroma: dark chocolate, coffee, black malt, hint of licorice, iron, and a hint of band-aid-y phenolics

Flavor: mildly sweet malt backbone enveloped by a lush roastiness; licorice, coffee, brown sugar, unsweetened chocolate; chicory bitterness; finishes dryish with a lingering roastiness in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: medium-full body, prickly carbonation, slightly astringent and minerally

Other comments: The bottle-conditioning makes this one of the liveliest porters I've had. The cork came off with a tremendous pop. Very tasty beer. It gets a bit sweeter and much more complex as it warms up in the glass.

 741 characters

Photo of jettjon
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from an attractive 750 ml caged cork bottle, there is no carbonated “pop” when the cork is removed. Pours a dark coppery brown color with a few bubbles along the bottom. Head is thick, rich, brownish-tan that fades away slowly leaving moderate lacing. Very attractive pour. Nose of rich, sweet malt and a definite chocolate presence. Taste is initially dominated by chocolate and roasted malt. Initially sweet, there’s a solid, moderate bitterness toward the middle, a kind of milky flavor, and then a mildly bitter, smooth finish. In the mouth, this is a very smooth beer. Consistency of 2% milk; milky is a great way to describe the feel—not syrupy, but milky. Drinkability is excellent due to great taste, smell, and body.

Overall: A great porter, strongly recommended.

 786 characters

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.27/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 750ml brown glass flask shaped bottle with a dimpled base. Sealed with a cork, cage and steel cap. The cork is branded with the Greenwich Brewery logo on the top and bottom and the sides are branded ‘Meantime share to be different’. The steel cap is equally ornate, silvered background has a white letter ‘G’ set against a dark blue background into the design of a Pocket Watch, signifying the historic importance and contribution of Greenwich to World time. Listed at 6.5% ABV. No freshness date but a ‘51659’ code is inkjet printed on the bottles neck.

The uniquely shaped black, red and silver front label has the words:
“George Washington was a big fan of imported English Porter. By 1769 he'd lost his taste for British beers. After all, it was keeping the Redcoats fighting. Our Porter is based on a recipe from 1750. We bring you the original aromas and flavours of the beer that made London the world's brewing capital, flavours we know Washington would have loved.”

The reverse label continues….
“The huge historic nature importance of one beer, London Porter, inspired us to recreate this great beer style. Time, care & attention have enabled us to produce a blend of beers bringing you the flavour of the 1750's. Share this beer with friends and enjoy with barbeques, fish or shellfish. The ruby colour & bottle conditioning are proof of its heritage and authenticity.”

Appearance: Dark ruby brown body with mahogany hints and lovely looking tan colored head. Excellent lacing with some well defined lacing. Thick creamy cap seems to want to hang around but thins a little words the end. Conditioning is great, despite the fact that the cork was removed with little in the way of any noise.

Nose: Nutty malts, smoked peat and a soil laden rich warming finish. Distinct coffee laden caramel and dark chocolate with some low end herbs and spices.

Taste: Gorgeous entrance screams what I get in the nose, but it is accentuated to a higher degree. The middle builds on the earlier malts but the finish is dry and smoky. Oak tendencies and hints if BBQ meat seeps slowly into the back whilst a low bitterness balances the malts. Nicely balanced with a fine nutty lingering malt scope.

Mouthfeel: The conditioning is super smooth and whilst malt laden, it has a very attractive balance nonetheless. Almost perfect.

Drinkability: Cost $9.07 at Hi-Times in Costa Mesa, a little on the high side price-wise but damned good. I am almost ashamed to admit that I slurped this one down all too quickly, it really didn’t take much effort to quaff this beauty, I tried to savor it, but it drinks like a Session-Porter. Despite the price I *need* more of this libation to satisfy my needs.

Overall: I was lucky enough to visit the Greenwich Union (i.e. the Brewery Tap) whilst on a recent trip to London with my old mate and fellow BA RichLightWeight back in June - what a great trip that was! Well I only tried the IPA whilst there, but had heard great things about the Porter. I’m glad to report that all the stories and rumors are true.

Aylesbury Duck!! This is Robin Hood. Well me old China, a word in your Shell-Like, this is no Gypsy’s Kiss or Sexton Blake….but Top Sherbet! Lovely Jubbly.

A Mean London Porter alright. Fabulous stuff.

 3,300 characters

Photo of Dukeofearl
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750 ml bottle, caged and capped, that showed up in early August 2006 at LaBodega in Riverside, CA. Purchase price, $8.99.

Before I start, I should admit that I am not a huge fan of the style. So I don't have a lot of experience with it. But here goes:

Pours a dark brown with reddish tints and a very nice tan head that slowly settles to a nice thin cover.

Aroma of sweet malts, roasted nuts, caramel and vanilla.

Flavor is very tasty, with nutty, toffee, and hints of smoke followed up by a subtle hop kick. Quite enjoyable.

Mouthfeel is rich and full, but not filling. Drinkability is something that Meantime seems to have nailed- both their IPA and this one are scary how easily they go down.

OK, this may be an odd approach to thinking of this beer, but I had recently tried a couple of brown ales, and when I had this porter, I all I could think of is that this is what I want when I try a Brown Ale. I am almost always disappointed by Brown Ales- if I was given this and was told it was a Brown Ale, I would proclaim it the king of browns. (FYI, this is not meant to be critical, it's meant to be a huge compliment).


 1,156 characters

Photo of ypsifly
4.45/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Corked and caged 750 with a BB date of 1-11-08 jetted on the neck. Purchased at Merchant's in Dearborn and poured into a pint glass.

Dark chestnut with a big head of light tan that has strong retention and leaves thick rings of lace.

Chocolate and fresh roasted coffee aromas paired with nuts, wood, and a suggestion of smoke. Very inviting.

A full mouth with plenty of carbonation. This is a very tasty and complex porter that doesn't go overboard with the roasty aromas and flavors. I like it.

 504 characters

Photo of SilentSabre
3.79/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This ended up being very different from what I was expecting. It poured a hazy brown, nearly as *light* as an English brown ale. It didn't look anything like what I think of when I think of a Porter. Smell is sweet malts and a touch of toffee. The taste is nearly ALL malt with little or no hops up front and only a slight hop bitterness towards the end. Quite lovely. Especially as it warms. Mouthfeel is very, very smooth and creamy. Almost chewy, again, as it warms. This was a good porter. Peculiar look about it, for a porter, but everything else was quite nice.

 567 characters

Photo of sacfly
4.22/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4


Pours a muddy dark brown with a moderate head of brown bubbles. Smells of chocolate and dark roast coffee. Taste is thick and chocolaty. Burnt flavor is prominent throughout, but is dominating in the aftertaste. Very nice. Sweet and malt and chocolate upfront, burnt dark roast coffee in the finish. Takes on a woody character as it warms. Great porter!

 362 characters

Photo of wl0307
4.27/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is the second time that I review the bottled-version of this brew; this bottle has the same BB date (23/05/08) as my last one consumed eight months ago. Served cool in a large Burgundy bulb wine glass.

A: pours a beautiful, dark mahogany hue; the tan beer head is thicker than last time, slowly building up to a thin layer of foam sustaining throughout the drink; semi-lively fizziness.
S: a deeply chocolatey and almost raw-ish, chewy and earthy note of chocolate malts (as if roughly-crushed) prevails upfront, joined force by an equally profound edge of ripe/dried dark fruits (dried black dates, raisins, plum-preserve), licorice, and a touch of vanilla; remotely a tinge of Goldings hops is detected. As malty as it's fruity, slightly akin to the Chocolate Beer by the same brewery, yet less sweet and more complex.
T: chewy dark malts, roast nuttiness, and chocolate milk expand on the palate in no time... fast bringing aboard an earthy+leafy+herbal dryish bitter edge of hops to elevate the fore-taste to the next level, and even refresh the palate! A roasty tinge of sweet coffee and icorice, and restrained sour hint of berry-fruit as well as South American single-variety coffee linger well in the finish, reaching a somewhat balance in the lightly-flavoured but long finish.
M&D: softly-carbonated, very smooth on the mouthfeel with a lighter body than its aroma and fore-taste suggest... it seems eight-more-month ageing hasn't changed the already soft palate too much, but the flavour seems to be slightly more mellow than my last bottle and enjoys a longer aftertaste. All in all, I think this is a well-crafted, fruity as well as malty, utterly approachable porter to savour with mates, not over food.

 1,728 characters

Photo of maxpower
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

750 ml corked and caged bottle pours a deep ruby-black color, nice thick head that clings to my glass. Fresh roasted coffee chocolate aromas, chocolate-caramel, smoky and roasty coffee flavors. Medium body with a somewhat watery mouthfeel, a decent porter.

 256 characters

Photo of grub
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a deep red-brown colour with a half inch of tan head. colour seems a little light, even for an english porter. the head slowly drops to a thin layer on top of the beer and a wide ring around the glass.

aroma is nice. malty, rich and roasty. some chocolate.

taste is roasty and has a biscuity maltyness, with just a little bitterness in the finish. bittersweet chocolate. a hint of espresso. a bit of fruitiness. very tasty.

mouthfeel is good. nice body, and a nice low carbonation.

drinkability on this one is pretty good. it's a 750ml bottle, but at 6.5% it's not going to knock you over.

overall a very nice beer, with a cool corked bottle. thanks to Viggo for sending this one my way.

 708 characters

Photo of dogfooddog
4.35/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a surprisingly good bottle-conditioned porter. Served 50f, pours reasonable head into a pint glass. I have had a number of these and find this an excellent porter option.

Nose is sour and slightly roasted. The taste is very pleasant, typical roasted malt notes with a strong underlying sourness throughout. the beer finishes with a mildly sour but not lactic with hints of roast.

This is really a very nice drink. In other bottles/cases I have found the sourness level varies.

The bottle clearly states that this is a blended beer, but I have been unable to find information on exactly what types of beers are blended for this product. The meantime website leaves something to be desired.

2 out of the three meantime beers I have tried I enjoyed a lot, so clearly this brewery is doing something right.

 822 characters

Photo of carln26
4.32/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Inky black beer. I could not detect any light through the glass at all. It’s topped by a thick tan head. The head receded quickly, but left a delicate lace on the side of the glass. The nose is all roast malt. It has a lot of espresso, light chocolate, and a mild smoky character. The flavor really brings the roasted malt forward. Surprisingly smoky, with more of the espresso, bitter chocolate. A good bitterness attacks midway through the flavor and lasts into the finish which is composed of more coffee flavors. Smooth, and rich mouth feel, this is a wonderfully drinkable London porter.

 593 characters

Photo of mdagnew
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice corked 750ml bottle bought from Sainsbury's...

Poured a deep dark burgundy red / brown... Creamy tan head poured very big and foamy then faded to thin layer... some sticky lacing...

Aroma - Dark chocolate, coffee, light smokiness, nutmeg notes, peppery hops, some light vanilla notes...

Taste – Strong coffee, light chocolate malts, peppery, bready / yeasty notes, nice spicy hop bitterness, some smokey notes...

Feel - Quite sharp and dry... Medium bodied. Pretty drinkable..

Overall - An excellent porter.... Recommended !!

 546 characters

Photo of cypressbob
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, very classy looking

Pours with a dark brown body, almost ruby red in the light. Nice tan head, not huge but respectable

Smell, some burnt barbeque aromas, some sweet turkish delight and sweet honey on the nose.

Taste, smooth and crisp chocolate, some thick dried fruit also. Light espresso, some deep thick bitter chocolate

A great beer, very interesting porter

 388 characters

Photo of Crosling
3.7/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark copper color, untypicallly light considering the style. Jammy fruits in the nose, with hints of plums and berries, not your typical chocolate, coffee porter aromas. Caramel flavors abound, with a variety of fruits. Nice flavor, with a mild body.

 250 characters

Photo of meathookjones
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Corked and caged 750ml. Almost brown with a tall tan head that left some webbings of lace around the glass. Aroma was full of sweet caramel and chocolate notes. Some light fruit was there as well. The flavor started off with more sweet caramel and light roasted malt notes. Mild fruit and chocolate followed. Finished sweet and dry. A good solid flavor for the style. Good body that was very smooth going down and quite drinkable as well. A good solid English style porter that is subtle yet still has plenty of flavor.

 519 characters

Photo of russpowell
4.62/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Beautiful champainge (sp??) like bottle. Not much off the cork pop

Pours deep red to mahogany with a 2" tan that drops off fast. No lacing, average head retention

Smell: Malty, smokey, fruitty

Taste: Toasty deep malt, peat smokiness, caramel. Finshes, malty, seet, slightly smoky & dry. yum

MF: Perfect, malt offset by all the othe flavors in play. great carbonation

Very drinkable & so out of type of what i expected...Worth the$9.00 a bottle IMHO. This is probably what porters tasted like in Dicken's day IMO

 527 characters

Photo of CRJMellor
4.25/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours maroon and moderate brown shade withe some decently layered and puffy medum tan head and lace.
Aroma of baked bread, some brown sugar, chocolate and a hint of some dark citrus fruits.
Flavors doiminated by grainy, dark bread tones and some sweet chocolate and carmael notes. Bittering comes on slowly but procedes to gather momentum until a surprising sort of smoked or roasted notes comes in again.
Mouthfeel is lighter bodied than I would expect given the aroma and flavor but is veery much to style.
Drinkability is really quite good. Had limited expectations for this brew and it really surpassed my expectations. Highly drinkable, well made and enjoyable porter. Not quite up to the standards of a Fuller's but still enjoyable and worth the relatively steep pricetag.

 782 characters

Photo of gdogalishus
4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from the bottle into a mug style glass. It poured a dark translucent brown with a huge robust head of large dark tan bubbles. Mild carbonation was apparent, but light enough to let the head subside over the course of a minute or two.
The aroma was clean with mild dark malts. Nothing overpowering in the nose. Flavor was smooth and dominated by a soft dark roasty malt flavor with a light alcohol taste peeking out from behind in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel was thick without being heavy and left the flavor sitting on the tongue after the swallow. Good looking, mild aroma and great smooth flavor are what makes this beer so easy to drink.

 646 characters

Photo of Jredner
3.15/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Somewhat sharp coffee aroma, but there is a tinge of some sweet malt as well. Amber brown in color with a quarter sized mocha head. Almost smokey malted fore with some brown sugar, coffee and chocolate notes. British porters tend to be lighter in color and less roasty and this one is no different. The finish is mild and tangy rather than mildy bitter and roasty like many American made porters. I think I have come to favor the American approach because while this is good it isn’t exactly knocking my socks

 510 characters

Photo of Sephiroth
4.7/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I sure hope the cork on my last Unibroue 10 pops more than this cork. Pours with two inches of foam, however. Smells of chocolate, burnt malt, and smoke.

I never knew a porter could be so good. Smoky, burnt malt, dark chocolate, and piney hops are fused into layers. This should pair well with filet mignon. Tastes and smells more vinous as it warms. Thick smooth mouthfeel. As this is the best porter I've ever had, it is insanely drinkable. I just want to fnow why it is $13 for 750ml.

 491 characters

Photo of scruffwhor
4.23/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle.Never seen a porter of any kind in a Belgian looking 750 ml bottle.

Appearance- Poured a one finger head into a pint glass. A slightly cloudy brown garvy color. A light lace could be seen when held to the light. A nice very fany brown head reamins throughout while also leaving foam along the glass.

Smell- Stars with hops and malt balance which lkeads to just malt then a light coffee.

Taste- Begins with malty sweet lead immediatley into some hops to even the maltiness out "some." Ends with a bittersweet chocoate and coffee taste.

Mouthfeel- A great malty palated porter which went very well with some sausage and mustard with a oil and vingegar and sugar salad.

A very pleasing beer that I haven't seen at my local liqour store and picked up on a sort of whim. Very pleased with results.

 840 characters

Photo of TastyTaste
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Corked and caged 750 mL bottle, recieved as part of ss '05 from LuckySevens82. Dark maroon, slightly hazed color, nice full off-white head, about 1/2", good retention.

Smell: Light cocoa and grain, bready, and slightly acidic.

Taste: Definitely an easy drinker, flavors are smooth and malty, slightly chocolate and musty. Hop bitterness transitions well to aftertaste, but is none too strong.

Mouthfeel: Good carbonation, full mouthfeel, very good.

Drinkability: A very solid and above average beer, thanks to LuckSevens82 for the opportunity.

 568 characters

London Porter from Meantime Brewing Company Limited
4.01 out of 5 based on 456 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.