Fuller's London Porter | Fuller Smith & Turner PLC

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Fuller's London PorterFuller's London Porter
2,714 Ratings
Fuller's London PorterFuller's London Porter

Brewed by:
Fuller Smith & Turner PLC
England, United Kingdom

Style: English Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Fuller's London Porter is an award-winning example of this historic English style; smooth and creamy with delicious chocolate and coffee flavors derived from the roasted malt.

The griffin Brewery is Chiswick, London, has brewing fine ales since 1654.

The Fuller, Smith & Turner partnership dating back to 1845, brews an excellent range of award-winning beers, many of which are available in the U.S. including London Pride pale ale and the Old's original ESB.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-20-2001

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Ratings: 2,714 |  Reviews: 1,249
Photo of haddon
3.97/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

tried Fuller's London Pale recently and was a little disappointed. ready to see if the porter backs up its label that says "the world's finest."

pours very dark with an off-white head that dissipates quickly. nothing great from the appearance.

I like the nose... sweet molasses, brown sugar, dark cola, & malts.

tastes of roasted coffee, chocolate, dark malts, licorice.

medium body that finishes a little light. not much creaminess. the feel is what always seems to keep many porters from excellence.

as far as porters go, this is good. would definitely drink again. nice sipper this Jan. evening as I watch The Dark Knight with a dark porter.

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Photo of prg1976
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown, almost totally black. Thin, beige head dissipates quickly.

Smell is smokey, caramel and dark chocolate.

Taste is a little like slightly burnt bread, with some bittersweet chocolate and light caramel.

Very smooth, easy to drink. Great classic example of the English porter style.

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Photo of bucklemyshoe
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Best before 04/13/2011. 330 mL bottle at 45 degrees into a pint glass.

A: It pours black but not quite opaque with a finger of tan head that recedes quickly to the edges and doesn't lace well.

S: Coffee, chocolate, biscuit, and caramel. It isn't very dynamic but, then again, not many English Porters are.

T: Bitter chocolate, dark-roast coffee, some sour fruitiness, and the taste of dry toast on the back end.

M: It has a medium-light body with a rich and creamy feel and the flavors sticking to the palate.

D: This is tasty, has a nice feel, and is quite quaffable: all you can ask for from the style.

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Photo of ElGeordie
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had 3 pints of Fullers Porter at the Capital Alehouse; it was steal the glass night so I also got 3 imperial pint glasses to take home !
This is a great example of a porter; no gimmicky additions (vanilla, chocolate etc) just a straight ahead mans beer.
Dark and tasty but not rich enough to be a stout.
It looks great in the glass; almost black with half an inch of head. The malts and hops stay with you and make you wanna pick up the glass again.

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Photo of obywan59
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into my Whitbread half-pint mug. Best before 15 Jul 2011. Getting up there.

Dark brown with deep amber or reddish highlights. 1 finger head that quickly dissipates. Light but attractive lacing.

Nicely sweet malt. Rich coffee and dark chocolate. A bit smokey.

Pretty dry for a porter, more tart than sweet. Plenty of dark chocolate, only the barest hint of coffee. Very smokey.

Pleasant mouthfeel, call it medium-bodied. Some nice warm alcohol in the finish.

I would have preferred it to be a bit sweeter like I remembered (it's probably just the age), but this is a very good beer nonetheless. Easy to drink and quite tasty.

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Photo of Brenden
4.19/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is dark brown in color with some clarity seeping through the edges and shining through a medium brown in the light. A small tan head forms and doesn't take particularly long to dissipate, though a strong foam remains behind and leaves moderate amounts of lacing.
First off the nose is chocolate with a hint of caramel, then some barley gives way to a touch of charcoal. There's a bit of earthiness to the aroma, and the main standout is the dark semi-sweet chocolate.
There's some nice complexity to the flavor, as a strongly malty backbone offers, as in the nose, mainly semi-sweet chocolate, followed by a light smoky charcoal note, a touch of coffee, and a touch of nutiness. A bit of astringency can be found at the back of the throat that leads an otherwise delicious flavor to finish with a bit of sourness at the end.
The mouthfeel is just full enough and well to style, with light carbonation. Each sip is crisp with a touch of smoothness.
This is a very nice porter and certainly an extremely accessible go-to well worth stocking.

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Photo of NODAK
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Has an aroma that is somewhat muted for style, but shows roasted malt, chocolate, and a bit of licorice perhaps.

Pours perfectly black, with a very fleeting head.

Taste is also a little reserved for style, but still quite good. Body has a good chocolate character to it that straddles the border between being a little sweet and roasted. Mild, but again, tasty. There is a hint of espresso in there as well that shows up near the backend. Really not much of anything in the hops department except a twinge at the finish. A note of licorice pops up after the swallow.

One of the most approachable and drinkable porters that is out there today. Not bold, but just delicious. You cannot go wrong here.

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Photo of laituegonflable
4.17/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a slightly reddish-brown colour with modest beige head, sinks to a thin film with a ring of medium-sized bubbles forming lace around the edge. Good-looking porter; more head would be nice, though.

Smells quite mild with lots of sweet, chocolatey notes. Slight sour note with a hint of cherry. Some espresso characters and a mild peat smoke note as well. Very nice, with all the right porter notes in good abundance; and yet more.

Tastes roastier. Fair wallop of toasty malt notes on the assault, with a slight chocolatey tinge and mild vanilla sweetness. Flavour dips quite a bit on the mid, but retains an underlying creaminess, then roasty/sour notes return for the finish: underplayed espresso bean and cocoa mostly. Not bad, the right flavours are there but I'm not hugely interested in the palate; actually borders on insipid at times.

Good full body though, never feels heavy, just slips through the mouth. Very decent indeed.

A superbly mild and sessionable beer. The first truly quaffable porter I think I've really encountered.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep, burnished brown, with tints of red amber at the edges. Head is fine, although it retains only as a filmy remainder on the top, but it leaves some impressive English lace. Looks very decent indeed.

Nose is nicely mixed between deep chocolate and roasted grain notes, and a sweet almost vanilla sweetness. There's almost a hint of something spicy and peppery coming through as well, but it just gives tiny staccato accents to the other very mellow characters. Quite mild but extremely delectable. There's a wonderful complexity to it.

Taste is also extremely good, and exceptionally well balanced. Throughout there are nuanced flavours peeking and then receding. Hints of chocolate, heather, liquorice, vanilla, roasted grain, and a light astringency on the back to clear it out. Ah, it's a lovely nuanced and complex palate. Feel is smooth but slick and relatively clean.

What a cracking beer, a lovely example of what the English can do so well. A smooth and mild beer, with nuanced and subtle complexity that makes the experience worthwhile.

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Photo of Shrews629
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Very, very dark brown color with some ruby highlights showing through. Tremendously thick, creamy, smooth looking tan head that stayed around for a long time and had more than sufficient lacing. Looks very inviting in the glass.

Smell - Calm hints of coffee and "dark" chocolate. Smells of toffee with some roastiness. Smells sweet, almost like and Oatmeal Stout.

Taste - The taste provided subtle coffee and chocolate flavors. The coffee seems to be roasted and it stood out only a touch more than the chocolate. Didn't pick up the toffee as much in the taste, but I picked up a touch of nuttiness. Like almond or something.

Mouthfeel - Very nice medium mouthfeel. Smooth and creamy. Easy going. Covers the palate with a slight oiliness and leaves plenty of flavor. Very nice.

Drinkability - This is a super easy drinking Porter. Very good and inviting. Worth a try and a great session brew. I could see myself having this on a cold night with some friends just relaxing. Actually, having several of these on a cold night just relaxing!!!

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Photo of DannyDan
4.31/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours out to a black body with a tan head that has good retention and solid tan lacing clinging to the sides of the beer mug. The smell is strong in chocolate with hints of coffee, roasted malts and a smoked flavor. The taste at first is chocolate followed by some coffee, some bitter hops, and roasted malts. The finishing taste is of smoked hickory and leaves a chocolaty aftertaste.This beer is also well balanced so it is not too bitter, but not to sweet either. The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy that clings to the mouth, tongue, and cheeks. This is a really nice medium to full bodied beer with decent carbonation that would go good with dark chocolates, or as a good after dinner beer. Just be careful because once you have one I'm very sure you will want another.

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Photo of midwestbrewers
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

11.2 oz bottle

A: Pours with an almost black but when held up to the light has a beautiful very dark amber color. There is a 1 finger tan head that dissipates rather quickly.

S: Chocolaty, malty smell. Very balanced in nose appeal. Some slight coffee notes are present as well.

T: The taste of coffee is present right away on the tongue. Half-way through the tongue the chocolate starts to make an appearance. The end is full-blown chocolate. Nice bitter chocolate finish.

Overall this is a great beer. I love chocolate and this pairs exceptionally well with dark chocolate. One of the better porters I've had recently. Very full in flavor but smooth and balanced. Great Beer Fuller Smith & Turner PLC!!!!

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Photo of scottfrie
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

330ml bottle into snifter.

A: Pours a dark chocolate brown with about a finger of light brown head that quickly faded into a thin bubbly film. Collar leaves some soapy lacing down the glass.
S: Mmmmm...chocolate covered hazelnuts fill my nostrils. I get big notes of milk chocolate and toasted nuts like almonds, hazelnuts or walnuts. There are subtle notes of sweet caramel and toffee in there as well.
T: All the nuts and chocolate from the nose translate to the mouth, but this beer is a lot sweeter than it smelled. I taste way more caramel and sweet brown sugar than the scent let on. Finish is sweet with hints of molasses, and the aftertaste is lightly bitter with a touch of smoke to it.
M: Medium body with soft carbonation. Mouthfeel is somewhat syrupy and slick but the finish is fairly dry.
D: This one had a really good flavor to it. I'm excited to hear this will be out in nitro-cans because the moutfeel and carbonation could use a little work. Overall pretty solid though.

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Photo of dragonWhale
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Skep.. Can't remember seeing this on draught anywhere else before. Maybe I never looked..

Dark brown with a beige head creaming my tremens snifter. I shake at the possibilities.
Big chocolatey nose, some roast in there, and a secret something, slightly fruity, esters buried?
Fantastic smooth chocolate bite that finishes very dry, roast and coffee in excellent complement.
First sip and I was hooked, even slightly too cold. Dry and smashing the entirety of my mouth. Brilliant malt bill. Extremely drinkable, didn't realize I was going to be such a fan.

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Photo of stingrayvr6
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Local 44, despite not liking it last year. Must have had a bad one then, loved it this time around. Poured a dark, thick black with some red when the light htis, frothy cream head, great retention and lacing. Smell super roasty of malts and chocolate, coffee too, very sweet. Taste incredibly chewing, almost like biting into a steak, clings to the mouth with sweet mellow and roasty. Incredible beer.

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Photo of coachdonovan
3.29/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dammit, I hate getting screwed out of 0.8 ounces of beer with these British bottles. Best by date of April 2011.

Dark dark brown in the pint glass with hints of red velvet when held up to the light. Head? None to speak of here. Some coffee in the nose but more chocolate, toffee and other sugars. Taste follows suit but the roasted coffee comes through more strongly here, and there's a detectable char in the finish. You'd think with low carbonation it would be much more creamy, but it ain't. I can immediately think of a handful of more accessible and superior porters.

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Photo of Bouleboubier
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Top to bottom, this is an utterly fabulous porter. Light barely gets through this one. Coffee-brown/black with a huge head on the pour and spectacular drapes of lacing. Coffee roast in the aroma, but in a mocha icing or coffee-cream-filled box chocolate type of way. As it warms, chocolate notes do come through more in the smell as well. A light-moderate hoppy bitterness seems to poke through and some really faint fruitiness. And this is all in the aroma! Soft roasty tones show strongest of all the flavors, with a mild lingering bitterness and bite. Mocha in the middle, coffee and light molasses come late. It's not an intense taste - and it drops off somewhat early (little aftertaste) - but it's balanced expertly.

This just drinks so elegantly - bloody creamy and smooth, not heavy, but with enough weight that it sits a bit. Fairly dry finish, which begs frequent sips and multiple pints.

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Photo of mentaltraveller
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thought I would try this beer, my brother swears by it. Presented in a brown 11.2 ounce bottle. Pours out a very dark brown, nearly black. Rich smell of coffee and alcohol. Surprisingly carbonated mouthfeel, with a finish of coffee, slight taste of alcohol and dark chocolate. If there is any drawback to this beer, it is the carbonation. Overall this beer is pretty good. Recommended for those seeking a tasty porter that is not too intense; it is highly drinkable. Pairs quite well with Led Zeppelin.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
3.91/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The color is a deep, dark brown with crimson / ruby highlights that emerge when held to the light. The color is deep, but the beer is not opaque. After a vigorous pour, the head stands in at nearly two inches thick, rising to the crest of the tulip glass. It gradually fades over a few minutes, leaving ample lacing in its wake.

S: The aroma grows stronger as the beer warms, but overall, it's the weakest aspect of the beer, in my opinion. Nice notes of chocolate and subtle roast aromas are the most prominent scents.

T: The beer tastes quite good. The beer leads off with a heavy chocolate flavor, followed by subtle coffee notes. The roast character is subtle, with extremely little hop presence in the finish. Overall, the flavor could be a bit more aggressive, or bolder. However, the beer is balanced very well and it's quite easy to drink and enjoy.

M: Carbonation level is great. The beer is light to medium bodied with alcohol presence virtually non-existent.

D: A solid example of the style. It's not my favorite porter, but I definitely recommend it.

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Photo of Scrylol
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a fine 1 finger head, lots of lacing. Dark color with some ruby tones.

The aroma consists of roasted malt, some toffee, some coffee, and some raisins.

The taste contains lots of roasted malt backed by some toffee and coffee flavours, leaves some bitterness behind, dry finish. I also get some hints of vanilla, not a lot though. Quite complex and rich.

The mouthfeel is pretty good, medium bodied, decent carbonation with each sip, and quite creamy, feels great on the palate.

Drinkability is great. Overall this drink is one fine, rich, complex brew, and I recommend it to try it out. It's delicious and gets better as it warms up.

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Photo of anakar
4.07/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good Beer, It's got a very specific flavor that would really make you say either 'Yum!' or 'Ikkk'. I didn't like the flavor, too yeasty. Dar and rich just like they say but the flavor is just no good to my taste. Kinda like Marmite, if you know it.

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Photo of CaptDavyJones
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 11.2 oz bottle, with the "best-by" date and ABV on the label. Nice dark brown color with a reddish hue against light and an almost disappearing head which somehow doesn't want to disappear. Aroma is predominantly coffee, cocoa, chocolate, with a hint of caramel. Taste is again a beautiful blend of roasted coffee, malt and caramel with a nice touch of chocolate after-taste. Mouthfeel is excellent, silky smooth porter with very good lacing. Drinkability is exceptional, I can have it any time, any place. Highly recommended for all porter lovers. A must have !!!

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Photo of wvsabbath
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Black with some light red traces, 1/2 head that didnt last long. Nice lacing

Smell - Smokey robust smell, dark molasses, sugars, malts, barley, chocolate.

Taste - Very nutty porter. Lots of dark sugar taste, along with smokey chocolate and coffee. The hops are noticeable. Very smooth and mild. Barley is present, as is the malts

Mouthfeel - Its bold yet mellow on the tounge. Its not strong, so flavor is over quick. The beer is bitter enough but nothing overpowering.

Drinkabilty - I can see why its so highly rated. Its so easy to drink, and has alot of flavors going on. I prefer my porters to be sweeter, or baltic though, but none the less, this is good stuff

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Photo of Flightoficarus
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into snifter

A - Pours a deep, rich black with a thick, creamy tan head that persists for quite some time I must say!

S - Smell is of cocoa, brownies, caramel, and a hint of coffee.

T - A supremely smooth blend of chocolate and caramel malt flavors, with hints of espresso, and a slight acidity, likely from he hop varieties used.

M - Medium-full bodied, creamy, and extremely smooth, near-zero carbonation.

D - I don't think it gets any more drinkable than this for the style!

Overall - An excellent Porter! Probably the smoothest I've had in the style. This one pairs perfectly with some smoked sausage. If you see this, it's definitely worth buying.

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Photo of JimLetson
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into my tulip glass.

Appearance - very, very dark brown, but not quite black, a little lighter around the edges. The one finger of head is white and recedes after a minute or two.

Smell - roasted malt, caramel, and a little coffee come through first, followed by something rather like pecan pie. Interesting!

Taste - again, the roast takes center stage. Chocolate and molasses also appear, and the finish is a dark coffee and some malty sweetness, both of which linger for a while after you swallow.

Mouthfeel - there isn't a whole lot of carbonation, and it really coats the mouth on the way down. I wouldn't say it's heavy, but it is full-bodied and rich.

Drinkability - I could definitely drink more than one, but I'm concerned that the sweeter finish would make this a less than optimal session beer for me.

The label says it's "rich, dark, and complex," and the beer certainly lives up to that. This is an outstanding beer, one of the best porters I've tasted.

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Fuller's London Porter from Fuller Smith & Turner PLC
Beer rating: 4.19 out of 5 with 2,714 ratings