Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter | Great Lakes Brewing Co.

2,016 Reviews
Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald PorterGreat Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Robust and complex, our Porter is a bittersweet tribute to the legendary freighter's fallen crew--taken too soon when the gales of November came early.

37 IBUs

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-09-2001

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Reviews: 2,016 | Ratings: 6,423
Photo of captaincoffee
4.16/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a fairly clear deep brown with good-sized khaki head that lasts and lasts, leaving good lace. Nose is really nice...fresh roasted barley and coffee comes through strong for a 6% beer. Taste is not as big as the nose, but well rounded malt and roasted flavors, a bit of caramel and coffee as well. Mouthfeel is a bit thin in comparison to the smell and taste. Better as it warms.Overall, a great beer that I'd love to see a bit "thicker" somehow.

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Photo of handmuffin
4.45/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Served from bottle into glass at home. Pours black with strong sepia colored head. Somewhat underwhelming mild roasted malt aroma with hint of coffee. What was lacking in aroma is more than made up for in flavor. Classic porter taste, creamy roasty toasty malt and subdued chocolate and coffee notes. Low medium bitterness, like dark chocolate and no detectable hops. Smooth mouthfeel, low carbonation and superb drinkability.

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Photo of Profundobaso
4.42/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

L - dark caramel brown, but still slightly translucent under the light. little to no head
S - very complex. coffee, vanilla, toffee, and some dried fruit
T - initially tastes a little like burned coffee, but not in a bad way. full flavor of the coffee and smokiness comes through after, along with the roasted malts as well
F - medium mouthfeel, but complex beer overall, yet still refreshing and easily drinkable. carbonation is also just right. this beer seems to have paradoxical qualities. i don't know how they do it, but it certainly works for me
O - an excellent porter, and one of the best around. there really isn't much more i can ask from this beer

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Photo of sokol_1993
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally tried it. More bitterness from the hop than I thought it'd be. Overall, a great brew, but the hoppiness really showed that this is an American beer.

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Photo of basaywhat
4.06/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Pours a dark opaque black with a thin layer of tan head. Aroma of coffee and roasted malts. Taste is great, with a well balanced coffee and roasted malt combo with hints of chocolate.

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Photo of Zach_Fehrman
4.21/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: A nice crisp porter with almost no head and lacing. Poured into a pint glass.

Smell: Delicate scent with notes of coffee and chocolate but not overpowering in any way.

Taste: A tad bitter at first but the after taste is fantastic. Carbonation is great for a porter and enhanced the flavor for me.

Feel: Put me on a ship sailing through the seas. However, this ship wasn't sinking.

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Photo of ThorSon
4.61/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown, nice frothy head. Very smooth and I had it with a burger in Duluth. When in Duluth you gotta order the Edmund Fitzgerald, as it was sunk in Lake Superior, and Duluth is a port city. Nice maltiness and goes down smooth. Great beer with a steak or burger.

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Photo of JohnKristan
4.85/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Exceptional porter. Roasty warm mouthful that epitomizes a perfectly crafted brew. Will make you question why you would ever stoced your refrigerator with another beer in this style.

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Photo of CNoj012
3.94/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This beer pours a dark brown color with a huge, sudsy tan head. There are beautiful ruby highlights when held directly up to the light. Retention is solid and there are wispy webs of lacing all over the glass.

Smell is very one dimensional. Sweet caramelized sugar is at the forefront with a hint of coffee and chocolate deep in the background.

Taste is much more well rounded. Caramelized sugar, coffee and chocolate blend together nicely in the begining and then make way for a hoppy bitter finish. Citrus and pine cut through and balance the sweetness nicely.

Feel is medium, chewey and smooth.

Overall a very good porter. The feel isn't beefy, but definitely not watery either. Will definitely have to grab more of this.

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Photo of kemoarps
3.83/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Dark cola brown body with an impressive soft foam hat the colour of espresso crema. Seems content to remain as a silky seal keeping the liquid separate from its environment.

Nose starts off with soft chocolate and roasty malts.

Flavour is a little further along towards burnt than truly roasty, with some bitter coffee and char overshadowing the soft sweeter edges of the aroma.

Body is thin and heavily carbonated.

Thanks to @WesMantooth for sending this one along forever ago as part of his mammoth NBS BIF #3 box. Glad to have gotten the chance to enjoy this legend of the midwest!

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Photo of cebsch
4.83/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

L: dark, though slightly translucent with a reddish brown hue; strong lacing
S: roasted barley
T: roasted coffee with hints of chocolate and a slight sweetness, though it leans toward an overall bitterness akin to a stout porter
F: full-bodied, with a crisp finish; strong carbonation

A great porter.

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Photo of Jadjunk
3.98/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

"Robust and complex, our Porter is a bittersweet tribute to the legendary freighter's fallen crew--taken too soon when the gales of November came early." Brewed in the style of an American Porter, available in 12 oz. bottled 6 packs and on year round draft.

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to a snifter glass.

(Appearance) Pours a crisp, frothy head of a medium tan consistency over an opaque dark brown body with fine sediment and sunset red highlights. Retention is good and lacing is light and patchy. 4

(Smell) Toasted caramel grain, chocolate malt and earthy toffee form a complex, yet drinkable malt body with a subtle lightness, essential for a porter. Delicate undertones of roast and dark fruit. Very textbook but pleasing aroma with no unexpected additions. Potency is moderate. 4

(Taste) The flavor largely follows the aroma, with a light-drinking malt body of dry chocolate malt, smooth toffee and lightly toasted caramel malt midsection, and a gentle cold roasted malt finish. Very clean, highly drinkable. 4

(Mouthfeel) Texture is slick, lightly chewy, medium dry. Carbonation is moderate, generating a medium frothiness and a moderately crisp finish. Body is medium for the style, medium+ overall. Balance is nearly even sweet to roasted and toasted specialty malt character bitterness. Alcohol presence is light and there are no off characters. 3.75

(Overall) Edmund Fitzgerald Porter isn't extraordinary by any means in that it doesn't take any particular risks in pushing the style beyond its current boundaries, but falls rather gracefully in the middle, generating a precise, enjoyable malt body that nicely balances out with the subtle specialty malt character, all while maintaining a high lightness and drinkability, essential for the design of a quality porter. In conclusion, it doesn't reach the pinnacle of some experimental and unique variations on the style, but is a great starting place for what we should come to expect from our American Porters. 4

Great Lakes Brewing Co.'s
Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

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Photo of beertunes
3.47/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to Superspak for the chance to finally try this guy, from his box in NBS BIF#4, MWK. Best by 12/31/16. 12oz bottle, poured into 10oz goblet. Poured a very dark brown color, just short of black, and had a bit of a reddish tint near the edges. The beer was nicely clear, and had about 1/2 inch of tan head that dissipated at a moderate pace and left low lacing.

Some nicely gentle roast notes were at the front of the olfactory portion of the program, with a gentle underlying malt scent. No noticeable hop profile. The taste was similar, but stronger, with the roast bordering on being coffee-like.

The body was thinner than I prefer in the style, but was smooth and even. There was good carbonation across the tongue, giving a very enjoyable effervescence. The roasted flavors lingered a few moments at the back of the palate, and led to a dry finish.

Drinkability was very good, I can see where folks could, and have, drink a lot of these. Overall, a very nice brew that certainly lives up to its reputation. If it were locally available, It would probably have it in my rotation.

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Photo of amont118
4.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is my first review so take it with a grain of salt.
This beer had a really nice look almost seeming black but in light it looked more like cola. The head had an initial rise and subsided quickly leaving just a thin layer on top which helped accentuate the great aroma of coffee and chocolate that this beer releases. As far as taste it matched the smell which I thought was delicious. As for feel I really am not an expert but I thought that it changed from the start toward the finish but it could have been a little too cold to start with and as it came to an appropriate temperature really became pleasant. Overall I really liked this beer and will be drinking it more often.

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Photo of wuthrichj15
4.6/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark brown/blackish. Smells delicious (coffee, chocolate), nice dark head that dissipates quickly. Taste matches the smell. Really smooth finish. Very well done

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Photo of Nimbus_
4.48/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Great looking beer. Pours nearly black, although holding up to light reveals a surprisingly clear dark brown cola color. I poured this pretty aggressively and ended up with about three fingers of tan head which went down fairly quickly leaving a thin layer to sit on top for the session. A splotchy lacing was left on the glass as I drank.

Smell: Initially, I got a lot of roasted malt, coffee, and just a tiny bit of chocolate. As I drank I noticed that the roasty aroma subsided and it balanced out very well with the chocolate.

Taste: Very similar to the taste. The first two sips or so had overpowering roasted malt and coffee flavors, which I am completely fine with. As I drank, the sweetness of the chocolate emerged a little more to balance out the flavors. There is a slight hop presence in the finish too that isn't overly bitter, and it actually balances the sweetness of the chocolate very well.

Feel: Medium bodied, and slightly creamy. An appropriate amount of gentle carbonation. A slightly dry finish that fits the roasted malt and mildly hoppy taste near the end.

Overall: I really liked this brew. I'm a big fan of porters, and this one stands out as one of the greats.

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Photo of Alan_Bats
4.92/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Honestly might be the best porter I've ever had. Roasty aroma and aftertaste. Depth of aroma is further accentuated in the flavor. Color is black, feel is wonderful. Aroma is spectacular and taste is even better. Maybe it is just my taste but this is damn near perfect.

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Photo of lwcreasy
4.38/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Near black with an inch of creamy, tan head. A frothy ring persists along the side of the glass. Decent lacing.

Deep chocolate aroma and rich breadiness. Toffee sweetness rolls in with every inhalation. Slight touch of earthiness from the hops joins the party, and the beer produces additional aroma after wonderful aroma as it is warming. Very subtle dark fruit and cocoa powder. Outstanding, subtle, and always evolving.

Strong and sharp breadiness transcends the nose. Slightly acidic (in a good way) with a nice hop bitterness and barely perceptible earthy hop notes to balance. Bittersweet chocolate and pleasant roastiness supplement the delicious bready quality.

Noticeable carbonation and slight alcohol warmth. Medium body. Refreshing and comforting at the same time.

Delicious beer with sumptuous bready character, nice supporting hop presence, and undeniable drinkability.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.56/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter has a thick, beige head, a dark, ruby-brown (as the light hits it) appearance, with some lacing left behind (but, not heavy lacing). The smell is of rich, sweet coffee, cream, chocolate, brown bread crust, and strong malt. Taste is of all that, with balancing bitterness. Mouthfeel is high medium, and Edmund Fitzgerald Porter finishes on the powdery side.


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Photo of pants678
2.84/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 5 | overall: 2.75

Dark brown with a light khaki, maintaining head.

Sorta malty, Willamette hops.

A touch of dark fruit brings out dark chocolate. Saly oyster type flavor. Not that aggressive, light coffee, heavy on black malt, could use a charred flavor. Hoppy and clean, not what I'm looking for, really. Too traditional.

Creamy, heavier side of medium. Perfect.

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Photo of laketang
4.36/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

appears black upon pour, but looking in light reveals a dark cola color with small fluffy head
roasted coffee scents. I love that aspect of this beer
chocolate and roast coffee notes.some English toffee as well
medium mouthfeel, great fresh brewed coffee like aftertaste.some bitterness
that is why this beer rates well.

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Photo of Guppy314
4.57/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I gravitate towards Stouts, but Porters as a category very much overlap (with typically more hops vs a pure Stout). This Edmund Fitzgerald has the thick malt and pronounced hops flavors of a Porter. But it is distinctive by adding nicely executed Coffee and Dark Chocolate flavors. I could happily drink this all night.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This beer really looks impressive, hits those dark as brown can be without being black notes, solid 1" tan head that provides some uniform lace down the side. Aroma was the usual droppings of chocolate and coffee from the roasted malt.

Taste, a thick, chewy chocolate malt and coffee impression. Nothing adjuncty, nothing out of the ordinary, just one of those prototype kind of porters. This one tames down the hopping and bitterness compared to another prototype like Sierra Nevada. All good, relatively sessionable and easy to drink. No frills. Elite 1st tier stuff.

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Photo of Beric
4.21/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Serving: Bottle into pint
Served: 6 May 2016

Appearance: Pours a deep reddish brown, definitely NOT black, crowned with a one-finger tan head. The head diminishes somewhat but leaves incredible lacing. Every sip all the way down the glass was marked by a perfect half-circle of bubbles.

Smell: Notes of black coffee, espresso, and a subtle roastiness. Some charred nuttiness.

Taste: Really nice blend of flavors here- the roasted malt definitely stands out without being abrasive. Notes of French roast coffee underly the whole thing, with a subtle hint of very dark chocolate to round it out.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, honestly. This doesn't feel big nor small on the palate, despite its rich color and flavor.

Overall: A magnificent porter and one that I think really speaks for itself. Highly recommended.

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Photo of OldSwampy
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This has bee one of my favorite beers for some time, though as a relatively new BA I have not reviewed it before.

Brown bottle poured into a nonic. Dark, dark brown with a rich tan head that's not too big. Nice nose, raisiny and dark chocolate malty scent. Taste hits with bitterness and leanness rather than sweetness, though there's some sweetness underneath. Rich and somewhat complex malt and hops interplay. Mouthfeel creamy but fades cleanly.

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Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
4.26 out of 5 based on 6,423 ratings.
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