Fuller's London Porter | Fuller Smith & Turner PLC

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1,207 Reviews
Fuller's London PorterFuller's London Porter

Brewed by:
Fuller Smith & Turner PLC
United Kingdom (England)

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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Reviews: 1,207 | Ratings: 2,575
Photo of jockstrappy
4.15/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rich, deep brown color....like coffee from a french press. Head is tan in color, nearly 2 fingers, and fades to a nice cream cap that lasts for the duration. Aroma is a mixture of roasted malts, coffee, and fruity apple-like notes as well. Taste begins with the coffee up front, but quickly gives way to hints of dark chocolate, and toasty caramel, with an ever-so-slight hop note....also a touch of fruitiness in there too, which seems to be a signature of English styles. This brew is easy on the palate with it's medium body, and finishes with a lingering chocolate-coffee effect. I could enjoy this one as a desert, or in the pub all damn day. Good beer, worth a try for sure!

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Photo of cbleary
3.79/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed at MCouls Public House in Greensboro, NC.

The beer arrived with a translucent black body and a thin white head. The beer tasted of a pleasant mix of dark and pale malts with a bit of British hops. Well-balanced and very filling, but I feel that there are better options out there.

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Photo of ManuelHerrera
4.05/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours exceptionally dark with a red hue. Nice burned, dark foamy head.

Smell - Creamy malted aroma with a hint of toffee.

Taste - This beer is heavy with coffee and chocolate overtones. The carmel finish makes it easy going down. The beer is rich in flavor and great for a cold winter night.

Mouthfeel - Smooth and heavy, just like a great English porter should be.

Drinkability - This beer is a meal in and of itself. It's smooth and easy to drink, but don't plan on spending a whole night with this beer. It's still a treat for the night you're wanting something dark!

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Photo of midwestbrewers
4.3/5  rDev +2.4%
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 Pooba001
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Aggressive pour from 16.9 oz. bottle yeilds a perfect light tan head on a dark but not quite black beer with light ruby edges when held to light. Head dissipates and leaves a little lacing. Aroma includes chocolate, light coffee, roasty, and slightly sweet flavors.

Big roasty character for a porter, hint of a burnt note in the aftertaste. Coffee and chocolate are again present. A big, beautiful, British porter.

Mouthfeel is good, slightly on the dry side, and drinkability is excellent, even for an English Porter. Downright sessionable. Another style defining beer from Fuller's.

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Photo of jaz58
3.99/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice dark brown clear colour in the glass. A very thin head when first poured yet it came together shortly after to create a thin creamy top.

Honey, caramel and dark roast coffee taste. Not alot in the nose, slight hint of coffee. Hardly any legs on the glass

A gentle bitter finish at the end.

All in all a decent porter.

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Photo of IgnatiusReilly
3.68/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on tap into a pint glass. I tried this one at a British Beer Company in Plymouth, Mass.

Very dark and inviting, thin creamy head that does not stay around too long. Seemed to dissipate after a short while. Some roasty, burnt flavors in the nose with a hint chocolate. The taste was full of roasted malt and coffee, with a little bit of sugar and chocolate. It was more smoky than I expected, but still very good. The mouth-feel was surprisingly thin judging by it’s appearance, but not too thin. This was a decent pint and will tag it as a safe-bet porter whenever I see it on tap anywhere.

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Photo of FirstMan
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Shapely bottle and tasteful label lend credibility. A nice change from the basic bottle.

Pours out dark, almost black with ruby hues along the edges. These stand out beautifully against the light. The head isn't foamy like some porters, but rather made up of tiny bubbles. It quickly dissipates into a thin layer that never quite breaks to reveal the beer beneith and sends little arms up the side of the glass.

The smell is complex and my favorite part of this beer. Strong notes of dark chocolate and a light smoky presence. A good strong inhale brings out the complexities and sweetness of the malt.

A somewhat tart start on the tip of the tongue almost immediately dissipates into a mellow, warm, smoky flavor filling the mouth. Strong chocolate flavors are balanced by a slight hop bitterness. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, but with enough carbination to keep it interesting.

Overall just a really wonderful English Porter. If you get a chance to have it on tap, don't pass it up. It's good in the bottle, but the draft is just splendid.

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Photo of UberWasser
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown bottle poured into a mug.

Pours a dark black color with a thin tan head that needs to be coaxed out with a medium hard pour and that doesn't stick around for long. It does lace the glass nicely, though, and a small halo stays around the edges for quite a while.

Smells of molasses and some brown sugar, mostly, with some faint smokey aromas just hinted at.

The molasses is still there in the taste but a sweet creamy taste pulls ahead just a little bit. A smokey roasted coffee bean taste settles on the back of the tongue just before and following the swallow. Mouthfeel is a little bit thin but has a nice lively carbonation that tickles the middle of the tongue in an enjoyable way.

This is a really pleasent porter that would be easy to sit back and sip all night long. Tastes good at cellar temp, tastes good at room temp, and has plenty going for it. Definitely something I'd drink again.

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Photo of lionking
4.33/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Poured a nice two finger head with some nice lacing on the glass as I drank the beer down.

Black color in the glass a nice dark ruby red hue. Sugary sweet smell along with a nice roasted grain smell.

Sugary chocolate taste as well burnt malt. Mouthfeel is thick but smoothe. An excellent porter. This one is my favorite porter at the present time.

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Photo of mdunman
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark beer with a thick head that lingered for a while

S: Roasted malt, alcohol, lemon and spices

T: Very nice cream soda flavor along with the roasted malt

M: Full body with good carbonation

Overall this is one of my favorite porters. Very enjoyable and not overly difficult to find.

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Photo of Tallboy
4/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours:a deep mahogany like brown-black with a 2 fingered tanish head with distinct lacing.
Scent: mmmm...Pretty good ammount of chocolate and toffee mixed in with the malt and some nice hops, a slight floral scent to note as well.
Taste:. Veery good first sip. was both hoppy and sweet with delicous malty goodness for full flavor.
Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and not as thick as I figured it would be.
Drinkability: Verry High....I can't wait to recomend to some of my buds.

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Photo of Thiestru
4.8/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into a pint-sized pub glass.

Appearance: Very, very dark brown, or maybe black. Can't quite tell. When I hold it up to the light, I can't see much cloudiness. There's a creamy brown head with, unfortunately, rather poor retention, and very little lacing - the only reasons this beer doesn't get a '5' here.

Smell: Big roasted malts and coffee.

Taste: Roasted malts are the first to come through, bearing a kind of coffee-like flavor. Dark chocolate also makes its presence known. Then, after letting the beer sit for a little while on the tongue, I can really taste some excellent hops. It's not really bitter, it just has that unmistakable hop taste we all know and love. This really hits the spot.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy, just like it should be. It could perhaps use a little more carbonation, but eh.

Drinkability: This beer never gets tiresome to me. Every time I drink one, my only regret is that I don't have five more waiting for me. (I buy singles of this at Wine World in North Augusta, SC.)

This has become one of my absolute favorite beers, and is a classic example of a fine porter.

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Photo of mentaltraveller
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
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 BobLuvBeer
4.17/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Rich, deep brown/black color, with foamy. mocha colored head. Very strong coffee crounds aroma. Same scent as if you were to take a wiff of used coffee grounds. Very thick feel, almost creamy. Strong coffee and roasted malt flavor in both the front taste and the finish. Hardly no carbonation, which fits well. Missing the chocolate taste to round it out, but it has it in the feel.

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Photo of bassboneman
4.18/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

What a great porter this is!
It is right up there with Founders and Anchor Steam!
Very full bodied porter with hints of chocolate.
I will certainly get this again!


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Photo of irishmoss
4.85/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been trying to get this one for a while, and I'm not disappointed.
The appearance deep, dark, opaque black with dense chocolate milk colored head that doesn't go away. There lots of nicely spaced out patches of lace that are tan in color.
The aroma is a deep dark roasted espresso bean that is nearly burnt, awesome. There are also faint malt and caramel whiffs here. When I drank this, there was again espresso, but with chocolate and hints of malt. Nice slight bitterness in the finish that was perfect with a great crisp after taste. Nice thick mouthfeel that's chewy and refreshing. Great drinkability, no matter what time of the day. As a testament to that last statement, I had this for breakfast the other day and the coffee flavors complimented the time of day perfectly. Note: review not written from the morning session...but it was just as good

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Photo of ghetto90007
4.03/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 12 oz. bottle into a poor man's pint glass. Advice on this one - definitely let it warm up. It really comes into it's own at around 55 degrees and up.

Pours dark, brown-black, nearly opaque. Frothy, creamy light brown head. Sticky, resilient lacing.

Smells quite malty, elements of cocoa. Hints of some complexity I can't quite put my finger on. Sort of smokey, but not really.

Roasted malt, bitter cocoa. I can taste the smoke coming through now. Bitterness from the hops comes through once the beer settles on your tongue and mingles with the cocoa and roasted malts in the aftertaste.

Medium body, moderately carbonated, but fairly soft mouthfeel.

A solid offering. This would be a great one to sit down with on a cruddy fall day in London.

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Photo of fretlessman71
4.65/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pertinent Preliminary Comments: Griffin is London’s Oldest Brewery, according to the bottle. I’ve heard and read such great things about this porter, and I’ve enjoyed a few bottles of the 1845 as well. Lot of folks I know say this is their favorite of the porters. The griffin on the label reminds me of the Griffin Wheel Company, which I believe still operates somewhere near Chicago. Used to have a set of highball glasses from them. Hope this bottle isn’t THAT old…

APPEARANCE: Gorgeous translucent ruby/mahogany with a very dense tan head. If I had an ice cream scoop I could make porter head sundaes! Leaving some pretty good lacing as head withdraws.

AROMA: Dark fruit and milk chocolate. Maybe they use Ovaltine! Getting a little bit of metallic/pencil shaving as well, probably due to their yeast – I’m vaguely reminded of a bottle of 1845 I had a while back.

FLAVOR: So many flavors are coming through here – chocolate, roasted peanuts, caramel, coffee (light and tasty, not black and burnt like I usually drink mine!), just a touch of hops, enough to balance the sweetness of the malt and no more. Dark fruit from the aroma is more apparent on the swallow. Somewhat dry finish; maybe clean is a better word for it. Gets even better as the beer warms.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium light weight, carbonation not a huge factor – the large head doesn’t seem to translate into a fizzy feel. Very smooth.

DRINKABILITY: Very good at 5.4% - almost in the realm of a session brew. The complexity means that I won’t get bored of it after the first pint (or pint-and-13/80 - what an odd size bottle at 1 pt., 2.6 oz.).

OVERALL COMMENTS: I don’t think that Fuller’s can make a bad beer – this is further proof of that. Distinctive, recognizable flavors, smoothness, that yearning for malted chocolate milk – can’t think of a more wonderful way to spend an evening.

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Photo of James954
4.03/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

I'm going to be plagarizing Ravyn X since it's a perfect description...but I drank it from draught at an English pub in Fort Lauderdale.

Cold, poured from a bottle into a snifter.

Look: Dark brow, thin tan head that clings to the edge of the glass. (great head from draught)

Smell: Toasty malt and dark chocolate.

Taste: Slightly nutty with cocoa and coffee aromas.

Feel: Smooth, minimal carbonation. Medium body.

Overall: Really enjoyable.

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Photo of Bestuurder
4.75/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Full bodied from a standard 50cl can. Nice can actually, very appropriate for the liquid GOLD that lies within!

Poured a very dark red, almost, and I say 'almost' black. With a beautiful head that nice and thick, with a creamy feel to the palate. The lacing was extraordinary; with simple lacing throughout the entire glass upon drinking.

One of the best tasting brews I have ever had. Complex with chocolate and coffee flavours. Deep and delicious! Unbelievably easy to drink with a full flavour and aggressive, yet not overly.

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Photo of ablaze
4.32/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Foamy tan head on a cola-like, solid black brew with minimal brown on the edges. Light lacing.

Bittersweet chocolate, earthy, coffee notes, and a nice clean roast scent that doesn't shy away.

Medium body, slick, with average carbonation. Crisp and dry. Earthy coffee beans, dry pumpernickel bread, light chocolate notes with a very good offering of fresh Fuggles hops. Sugary, light caramel drizzled over burnt toast.

Standard, well-rounded porter. Delicious and madly drinkable, but doesn't leave you entirely satisfied.

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Photo of SteveS1
4.35/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the bottle to a glass-
Looks: Pours a most impressive dark brown, nearly opaque but for a bit of red where light can shine through. Average sized head, dark brown and foamy.

Smell: Very sweet, rich flavors... coffee, caramel.

Taste: On the tongue it has a complex smoky bitterness, and finishes with a strong sweet coffee flavor. The aftertaste is the ever-present coffee.

Feel: A bit heavy, but not so much carbonation.

Drink: If you want flavor, specifically smoky, rich flavors, this is one excellent porter. I can definitely see drinking a few of these at the pub.

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Photo of rjplumer
4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Two finger creamy tan head. Mild cocoa like aroma.Very dark almost opaque as I had to hold it up to a light bulb to see a deep ruby like color. Mild bitterness. Soft chocolate and coffee taste. I sense a chalk like feel to the chocolate which may be the coffee side kicking it, Has a rich soft feel.

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Photo of Onceeven
4.01/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had a bomber of this out by a nice campfire on a cool night, what a treat.

Poured almost black, but transparent with a rich amber when held up to the light. Not much of a head, the tiny one that did show up only lasted a few seconds and was gone. Lacing was spotty, kind of disappointing. This beer smelled great, with a mixture of caramel sweetness, and an earthiness that reminded me of wet leaves. Caramel flavor came through big mixed with a hint of roastiness, and chocolate. I've had a few porters that tasted more like stouts to me, but this one had no identity issues. I did get a little tired of the caramel flavors towards the end of the glass, but this beer still remains a great porter.

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Fuller's London Porter from Fuller Smith & Turner PLC
4.2 out of 5 based on 2,575 ratings.
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