Saku Porter | Saku Brewery LTD

22 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Saku PorterSaku Porter

Brewed by:
Saku Brewery LTD

Style: Baltic Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by atis on 04-20-2009

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 22 | Ratings: 41
Photo of detgfrsh
2.78/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

From an undated half liter bottle. I think this is the correct listing, though my bottle says 6.9% ABV. Pours black with a finger of fluffy tan head. Smells of malt and chocolate. Taste starts out malty, but is quickly overpowered by sweetness. Disappointing. I prefer porters dry and a little on the bitter side. This one is way too sweet.

 340 characters

Photo of stevoj
3.49/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Sweet dark malts prevail in both aroma and taste. Black with foamy beige head. Molasses mostly, with some roast grains, chocolate and a smidge of hops. No evidence of alcohol warmth. Smooth.

 190 characters

Photo of BlackBeerPirate
3.93/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Taste has coffee and chocolate malt.
Very dark brown, semi opaque, complex bold coffee bean semi sweet.
Full body, thick tan head with little lace. A bit of a kick.

 164 characters

Photo of ClarenceClawmons
3.25/5  rDev -9%

Appearance: Head looks like a latte while the body is like jet-black freshly brewed coffee. Attractive pour.

Smell: Sugarcane-like smell, not too strong

Taste: Immediate hints of dark chocolate followed with a raisin taste, aftertaste lingers as a sweet molasses. Incredibly sweet beer.

Mouthfeel: More carbonation than I expected, lively but not overwhelming

Overall: This beer is simply too sugary for my tastes. Perhaps it would pair well with food, as I had this on its own. Would not go out of my way to buy it again but wouldn't say no if offered.

 557 characters

Photo of Brutaltruth
3.5/5  rDev -2%

Interesting take on a porter from Saku. Porter pours a thick brownish black with rich tan head
and very light lacing. Head never seems to die down much on this offering. Nose of bakers
chocolate, black cherries, leather like aroma, bread, and deeply roasted sweet grains. Taste
is up front sweet, almost to a detriment of the other flavors. Grown sugar and root beer like
flavors overwhelm this brew with a hint of cherry on the background. Mouthfeel is slick and
oily----very cloying to say the least. Much like the Russian styles this is alcohol heavy and
up front smack you around sweet. It lacks balance. Decent but not great.

 642 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
3.25/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Received in trade from RobertDale, thanks for the opportunity!
Pours a solid dark brown color with a decent sized khaki head that persists quite well. Aromas of bread, caramel, a bit of cherry and plum and a little wet cardboard. The flavor is fairly sweet with lots of brown sugar and caramel. Hints of chocolate, dark fruits, and earth round out the flavor. Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation and a chalky ashy creamy mouthfeel. Kind of sweet and sticky, but somewhat drinkable.

 494 characters

Photo of Weli
3.5/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark brown, almost black, but with good clarity , tan head appears when poured but quickly dissipates

S-Vanilla, caramel, roast malts, alcohol, dried stone fruit

T-Tastes quite bitter for a porter almost has a baking cocoa flavor, a bit dry and acidic, maybe a hint tannic. Some roasted malt sweetness, but with a lingering bitter finish. Like a good cup of coffee

M-medium bodied medium carbonation

O-Not a bad porter! actually one of the better Baltic beers I've had. To my mind it tastes more like a foreign export stout though than a Baltic porter as it has a definite roast barley bite to it.

 604 characters

Photo of falloutsnow
3.82/5  rDev +7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from Friar Tuck's in Savoy, IL
No bottled on date
Poured into a tulip glass

Saku's baltic porter is a classic European twist on the roasted and chocolate elements of this style. Its focus is sweetness, in the Eastern European rendition of the style, but the beer seems to be a blend between baltic porter and doppelbock, bringing in honey, nuts, and caramel to sit alongside the more mild roasted character. I appreciated the beer's combination of flavors and feel that the beer was well-executed and balanced. While it won't satisfy those looking for heavily roasted and chocolate versions of the style, I thought this was still tasty and one I'd probably go back to when looking for an interesting porter blending a few different qualities.

Pours a 2cm head of small and medium-sized bubbles, fairly dense, that descends at a fairly fast pace, eventually settling to a thin ring of foam around the glass. As the head descends, it leaves some minimal, spotty lacing along the sides of the glass. Body is dark brown to black, opaque, with no visible carbonation (except for directly under the perpetual ring of foam). Light does not penetrate the beer to allow for highlights or other effects.

Aroma of roasted malt alongside, somewhat surprisingly, nuts, honey, and caramel. Scents are somewhere between bold and upfront and fairly average.

Taste is of balanced roasted meets heavy caramel malts on the forefront of the palate, with a transition to more focus on toasted nuts, honey, and caramel occurring in the mid-palate. Back of the palate merges nuts, honey, and caramel with some prune fruit esters and a bit of ethanol. Lingering aftertaste of prune fruit esters, roasted malt sweetness, and ethanol. Generally, ethanol is very well-hidden.

Beer is medium-bodied with mid-level carbonation, which foams the beer up on the palate nicely, creating a smooth, bubbly, and creamy mouthfeel. Finishes semi-dry with a bit of stickiness around the tongue and lips.

 1,976 characters

Photo of FreshHawk
3.58/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark cola brown, nearing black. Large, foamy, creamy, light khaki colored head. Good retention leaving a nice sticky lacing.

S - Dark bread, slightly burnt molasses, and dark fruit (mostly raisin and not really vinous). Sweet and malty aroma that definitely is a baltic porter.

T - Similar to the nose only with a bit more chocolate/cocoa flavors. Still dominated by the dark, sweet bread and molasses flavors. Fair amount of non-vinous dark fruit. Somewhat like a doppelbock. Maybe a hint of coffee every now and then.

M - Medium body with average carbonation. Pretty smooth and maybe a touch thin.

D - Pretty easy to drink. Alcohol is well hidden. A little on the sweet side. Problem is that there is no signature or outstanding flavor. Nothing jumps out and makes me want more.

Notes: Nice Baltic Porter. Some doppelbock flavors in there. Sweet and malty beer with a very Eastern European taste (dark, sweet bread, etc.). Nice but there is nothing in there that is really memorable. Decent for the price though (got it on sale).

 1,040 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.03/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours with a massively impressive beige head that nestles above the coffee colored liquid; both the stickage and the lacing were impressive

Smell: Black, Eastern European bread, chocolate and coffee aromas waft

Taste: Sweet and chocolately, up front, with some dark dried fruit and black bread elements picking up in the middle; coffee and caramel add another dimension, after the swallow, though the finish is relatively dry

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Though it lacks some of the complexity of the top notch Baltic Porters, this is a very nice beer and is well worth a try

 628 characters

Photo of speter
4.2/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Nearly black with ruby highlights and a two-finger tan head that leaves little lacing.

S: Rich chocolate with roasted dark fruit (prunes, raisins, tart cherries) and brown sugar.

T: Porter meets doppelbock. Deep rich roasted malt with overtones of cocoa, coffee, and chicory from the porter mingle with raisin, prune, brown sugar and caramel.

M: Velvety feel with creamy carbonation. The ABV is barely noticeable.

O: A wonderful Baltic Porter, well worth seeking out.

 477 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.53/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Stable and masculine, this Baltic porter hits the style with a moderate thread from sip to finish.

The porter pours with a creamy malty look. Dark brown and basically opaque, the beer forms a delicate creame of a head that slowly reduces but never vanishes. Light lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the beer receeds.

Chocolate, light coffee, and deeply toasted grain starts the aromas. Robust with burnt molasass and a light grape-like ester. Malted milk builds the nose and eventually give the impression of Whoppers candies.

Flavors fare just as well- sweetness of burnt caramel, bittersweet chocolate, and creamy vanilla set the tone for sharper flavors to reveal themselves with each sip. Walnuts, Columbian coffee, heavy toast, and roasted bark all aid the beer while steering away from unnecessary bite or harshness.

Medium weighted, the beer starts creamy but has a nice and even fade to a malty-dry finish of semi-dry proportioins. Only a slight astringency from grain hangs up on the sides of the mouth and compound the roasty bitterness in the throat. More malty of a body would surpress the astringency but push the beer's weight upwards for its style.

Though this is a solid beer, I keep looking for a signature flavor that helps me to remember it. But it never happens- meaning that the beer is somewhat forgettable. This beer compares favoable to Sam Smith's Taddy Porter and Utenos Porter.

 1,417 characters

Photo of biglite351
2.05/5  rDev -42.6%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

A - a little red through the center of the glass. Tight off-white head.

S - very bock-like. Dried fruits, caramel and something that I didn't like.

T - just like the scent. Bock-like, fruit, caramel and something that I didn't like.

M - good coating with a good bit of tingle on top of tongue.

D - pass!

 307 characters

Photo of Daniellobo
4.1/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | drink: 4.5

Quite a nice porter, a bit of an unusual final range with even a vinous sense.

Presentation: 500 ml brown capped bottle. Purple labels with touches of gold and white lettering highlighting the name of the brew, alongside medals and signature. Back narrative offers a brief bilingual overview description of the brew, ingredients, and intent. Shows 7.5% Alc. by Vol. Served in a tulip glass.

A - Intense dark brown pour with a generous foamy head, medium retention, fair memory cap with some lacing.

S - Sweet nose, with caramel and a roasted sense leading to a nice fruity, dark, almost vinous range.

T - Hmmm, the flavors expands the nose and definitely provides a fruity sense, quite intense in the finish where not only the raisins and plums come in play but do so with a nice marked vinous finish that rides the malty caramel.

M - Medium to medium-full body with medium carbonation, and a pleasing creamy feeling.

D - All comes together in a rather nice drinking experience.

Notes: Nice offering with its own personality and well worth the repeat.

 1,113 characters

Photo of oberon
4.08/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

What a deal this Baltic porter is,go out and find ya one!Poured into a 1/2 liter stein a dark chocolate brown with ruby tinge,a two finger toasted almond colored head atop,great defintion to the fluffy head.Raisin and molasses aromas abound along with some iron,just sweet and warming like it should be.Big sweet flavors and slightly medicinal,raisn and molasses stick out most,a zip of warming alcohol and a faint woodiness to keep it from be cloying.Its smooth and warming,mid winter in Estonia Iam sure calls for a beer like this and it delivers,I like it more than most of the others who have reviewed it.

 609 characters

Photo of biggred1
3.53/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark, cola brown with a big, airy head of tan foam that leaves some spiderweb lace on the glass. Coffee and dark fruit with caramel cube in the nose on this one. Sweet with chocolate, raisin and cocoa powdery flavors. Thin and slightly chalky. An okay Porter.

 259 characters

Photo of Kakaraht
3.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: A nice dark roasty looking beer with a beautiful thick tan head that lingers well into the beer.

S: Not too much aroma, maybe a little malt and sweetness.

T: This is a delicious sweet porter with nice roasted malt caramel and toffee flavor. It has a subtle coffee background that is more evident as it warms.

M: Good carbonation, more that most stouts. medium body and a nice coffee like flavor lingers.

D: This to me was the perfect example of a Baltic Porter, nice and sweet and rich. Absolutely delicious and refreshing.

 530 characters

Photo of daledeee
3.63/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I think this and the Saku Estonian Porter may be the same thing. I am reviewing the one that has the picture that matches.

This poured very very dark with a tan head, a big tan head.

Nose is not real strong with evidence of hops and caramel, but not much.

Taste is roasted malt, a little sweet at the beginning and drying at the finish. Not a lot of smokiness in this one. It is middle of the road bitter on a scale compared to others. Not real complex. Easy to drink.

 472 characters

Photo of BeerNinja007
3.5/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I got this 500mL single from Manchester Wine and Liquors in Manchester CT for $2.69. Served cold in a chilled pint glass.

This black brew throws up a frothy 3" of beige head that settles to a rocky 1" with some craters and lace. After it has warmed a bit, the smell is still kinda faint, but I get dark stuff, yeast, some molassas, a hint of diacetyl. On the taste the dark stuff is muddy but identifiable as some mix of burnt brown sugar, raisin, pinch of smoke and anise, molassas, with a bit of citrus hop that blends in well with the rest of it. Feel is fairly thick with soft carbonation.

 594 characters

Photo of NewGeneric
3.57/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Chicago for hookin it up.
Poured into my Tripel Karmeliet tulip.

A: Pours dark black, with some brown hues around the edges. One finger of foam fades really quickly leaving thin wisps of lacing around the sides of the glass.

S: Smells mainly like a doppelbock. Hints of roastiness, complemented by dark fruits, caramel, and a touch of coffee.

T: Dark fruits, a touch of roast, caramel, and nuts.

M: Overly carbonated. Slightly too bitter as well.

D: Drinkable, but probably not more than one at a time.

 517 characters

Photo of comfortablynumb1
3.75/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Didn't get a chance to take notes on this one, as i was walking around Tallinn with the wife while I was drinking it. So this one is going off memory.

Poured from a 500ml bottle.

Poured dark with a small head that dissipated fairly quick.

Had a distinct dark chocolate/coffee taste. Definite medium-bodied beer. Alcohol was very well hidden despite the fact this one has decent ABV for a porter.

All in all, a very good baltic porter. Very drinkable. Not only that, I don't recall paying to much for this, so that is always a plus. Would definitely buy this one again if I happen to come across it.


 614 characters

Photo of atis
3.89/5  rDev +9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle from Tallinn. I am not sure it is a direct descendant of Saku Estonian Porter (8% ABV), so I listed it as a new beer.

Pours very dark brown, almost black with large and soft brown head that fades to thin, but dense layer, very weak downsliding lacing. Aroma is fresh light roasted and sweetish malt, hints of alcohol.

Taste is bitterish roasted, some sweetness, quite strong coffee flavour and medium-dry/dry finish with more coffee in the long-lasting aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium with slightly more than average (for Porter) carbonation, weak and smooth alcohol warming.

Overall, a nice and enjoyable Porter.

 636 characters

Saku Porter from Saku Brewery LTD
3.57 out of 5 based on 41 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

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.