Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter | Great Lakes Brewing Co.

2,014 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

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 2,014 | Ratings: 6,413
Photo of busterthecat
3.48/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a SA perfect pint glass. Best by date of 11/30/11.

A- Pours a rich dark amber from bottle that sits a very dark brown hue. A very big light mocha head forms before residing to a good capping. Good filmy lacing.

S- Chocolate and coffee upfront. Pretty good aroma. Could be stronger and have more depth.

T- Bittersweet chocolate all over the palate. There is some bitter zest. A very light smoke on the back end. Good.

M- Starts medium bodied then thins out. Stays wet through entire taste and finish. There is a lingering tang on the palate.

O- A good porter overall. Could have more depth and a fuller feel. Glad I tried, but wouldn't go out of my way for it.

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Photo of jtierney89
3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

near black deep brown tan head. charcoal coffee and black chocolate on the nose.

burnt coffee flavor with some dark bitter chocolate and charcoal. creamy and chewy big body. herbal hop good bitterness and balance. a good beer with simple flavors but I don't understand the super high ratings. I like it but not crazy about it.

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Photo of tone77
3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a black color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is dominated by roasted malts. Taste is of coffee, malts, maybe a hint of chocolate, slight bitterness. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and has good drinkability. Overall this is a good quality brew.

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Photo of Jredner
3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Strong malty aroma with a touch of mocha. Deep black with a thin bubbly head. Sweet and approachable flavor palate, but I hate to say it I am not as impressed as I thought I’d be. There is a wateryness to the flavor in the finish that is impossible not to notice. A very decent porter, but I think it is highly overrated. Just doesn’t have enough ass to it. Needs a lot more roastiness and less chocolate creaminess.

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Photo of Owlish1
3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I really wanted to like this, but ... I couldn't quite make it work. It poured a lovely, rich, dark mahogany with a smallish head. The aroma was full of promise - roasted coffee, toasty malts - but the delivery started out more bitter than smooth and mellow. As the glass warmed in my hand, it improved, but not enough to redeem it.

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Photo of xpdrinker
3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a glowing dark brown with thin khaki head that doesn't last, but leaves a nice lace. Surprisingly darker than their Blackout stout, though.

S - Some coffee, brown sugar and a minuscule amount of coffee. Slight touch of raisin.

T - Dark brown sugar, weak coffee, roasted almonds.

M - Light bodied, above average carbonation.

O - Only word that comes to mind is solid. Everyone should try it at least once.

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Photo of Anthony1
3.5/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a deep, dark black color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great. It has a smooth roasted malt scent along with a creamy chocolate aroma. The taste is great as well. It has a wonderful roasted malt flavor that goes down easy and finishes dry with a slight hint of chocolate. It's extremely smooth and easy drinking. The mouthfeel is good. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn fine porter, but I was expecting more.

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Photo of morimech
3.51/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Best before date of 04/24/10.

Pours dark brown with a red tint. A large tan head forms and has very good retention before settling to a thick cap. Rings of lacing is left on the glass. Aroma consists of roasted malt, milk chocolate, and hay. Had to search a little to find the roasted malt. The flavor is not that porterish. Sweeter than what I was expecting. The score I gave it is more than generous. The flavor is a combination of chocolate, cherries, and a herbal quality I cannot place. Maybe this bottle is off. Medium body and good carbonation. Has life without being harsh. Nice texture. The flavor just does not suit me. I will need another example and come back and judge this beer again because I cannot believe this is the best of the American Porters.

05/09/2010 Review
Revisted this beer since it is brand new to the market. Best before date of 10/05/2010. I will bump up the taste score from 3 to 3.5 but otherwise my original ratings stand. The score increase is because this time I picked up more subtle flavors. Definate C-hop flavor that gives more of a bittersweet aspect. Still many porters out there that are better than this.

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Photo of Doodlesby
3.51/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from bottle into ommegang glass

A: medium darkness, an amber color towards the bottom of glass when light hits just right. Light tan head that dissipates within a minute or two.

S: sweet smell of chocolate and toffee.

T: hint of bitterness, dark chocolate, coffee, and roasted malt.

M: medium body, creamy and smooth finish.

Overall: great porter that's not too heavy and could probably drink a couple and not feel so full. Very well balanced.

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Photo of sisuspeed
3.51/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Romulux for the bottle!

Poured into a Portsmouth tasting glass. A big, foamy, light-tan head rests on top of an essentially black body. Sticky patches of lacing left behind.

Earthy, well-roasted malts on the nose mixed with a bit of chocolate and some bread. Somewhat smokey with a metallic tinge, but the metallic notes seems to be fading. Smells pretty good, but it would be nice if it were a bit stronger.

Roasty, smoked dark malts wash across the tongue followed by some bitter hop and a touch of dark chocolate. Still some what metallic and thin. A little more bitter than I would like. Almost grainy.

Mouthfeel is fairly smooth, but seems a bit thin and over carbonated.

Drinkability is better than average, but not great. I'm not really sure why this beer gets so much love. Founders Porter blows this one out of the water as does Sierra Nevada's offering. Too bitter and thin with a faint (yet noticeable) metallic taste. Maybe this is just a bad bottle. If the second bottle I have is different I'll re-review. Not a bad beer by any means, but not all that great.

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Photo of Briarbush
3.52/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Dark brown with a small tan head

Smell: Bittersweet chocolate prevails with a subtle hint of coffe, tiny smell of hops

Taste: Coffe was the most prevailing for me. With a very light chocolate flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium-Full body, crisp finish

Drinkability: I'm not a porter man but I found this to be drinkable. If you love porters you will probably enjoy this beer.

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Photo of cadizkyguy
3.53/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This might be the best thing to come out of Cleveland, Ohio. Lucky to find an ultra fresh 6 pack, with a best by date of June 9, 2013, at The Party Source in Bellevue, KY on New Year's Eve. I can never find this beer, fresh or otherwise. It doesn't stay on the shelves long enough to collect dust.

Having enjoyed it before, i'm going to review this now.

Great pour into my Samuel Adams Perfect Glass. Nice frothy head on top of a dark as cola body. The beer might have chilled too long, because the smell has a light roastiness to it -- not characteristic of a world class porter, as the scores on BA would indicate.

Taste... maybe it's too fresh, because this beer tastes kind of green. Mouthfeel is thin also.

In conclusion, this is a very nice beer, but hardly world class. My favorite porter is still Founders' Porter. Now that is world class.

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Photo of dorianmarley
3.53/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The color is a deep black, with a creamy head.

The nose is nutty, with maple syrup.

The taste is nutty, with plenty of cocoa bean and coffee.

The mouthfeel is what sets it apart from many porters: it has a lot of carbonation and is not particularly smooth. It gives off a fizzy feeling, like a fountain soda.

It is a refreshing porter, but it did not provide enough smoothness to compliment the rich flavors.

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Photo of dpnelson1978
3.54/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle into glass pint.

$9.99 / 6-pk.

A: Bright deep brown body with a small creamy tan head of low retention that leaves no lacing, and a thin creamy cover.

S: Chocolate dominates with coffee in the background. Sweet roasted character throughout. Very nice.

T: Deep roasted malt backbone with characteristic astringency. Coffee is subdued and chocolate is almost nonexistent (a little disappointing). Hop bitterness is tough to make out, but there is a lingering bitter aftertaste I could do without.

M: Light with high carbonation. Very crisp. Not what I would have expected.

D: Light, crisp beer that is full of flavor. Stands up well, but the aftertaste drags it down a bit in my opinion.

O: Solid beer, but not exceptional. Pretty typical experience for me with Great Lakes.

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Photo of ChristianBlack
3.56/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark, with a frothy head and good retention.

Smoky, somewhat metallic nose. Coffee is very pronounced throughout.

Smooth, creamy. The mouthfeel really pretty good and finishes clean. Alcohol is well hidden.

Malty backbone, much like the nose. Somewhat watered down and I can't pick up much at first. Not overly complex with isn't necessarily a bad thing.

A good straightforward porter, although I'm not as impressed with it as others. The drinkibiliy is pretty good on this one and the balance is nice. Overall, a very solid beer.

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Photo of Brian_L-2056
3.56/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not really a big porter fan but I thought I should at least try and expand my horizons. Pours a nice dark red/chocolate brown color. Little to no carbonation with thin creamy caramel color head. Taste immediately like coffee and toffee with a milder coffee finish. Lacing is very good. Overall, I think this is a good solid brew for anyone whom enjoys porters.

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Photo of cbeer88
3.57/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tasted blindly courtesy of Blind BIF #7.

Appearance: The liquid flows out of the bottle in a darkish brown shade, but amasses into the cup in a very dark brown bordering on black. Head is about a finger and a half of tan. Lacing is decent.

Smell: Coffee and roasted malts pummel the nose. If I strain I think I can smell some faint hops.

Taste: Very bitter - intense coffee flavor and again, the roasted malts. Notes of chocolate and licorice. This guy is really on the astringent side of bitter coffee.

Mouthfeel: A little thin, especially for the style. Adequate carb levels.

Drinkability: Moderate to low - I don't mind one, but that astringency in the coffee is a little much for multiples.

Overall: This is a decent beer, but it's nothing to write home about. Seems like a run of the mill porter.

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Photo of Bucknutty24
3.58/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: This pours a solid black color with a tan colored head that fades kinda quick.

S: The smell is mostly malts,coffee and chocolate.

T: Real nice coffee and chocolate taste at first and a slight bitterness on the finish.

M: A creamy medium body feel.

O:I've not had many porters yet. This was part of a sampler pack and turned out to an excellent surprise. I will probably be drinking this agian soon.

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Photo of bmeehan
3.59/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I'm not big on porters, but this is definitely one I'd recommend to others. It's flavorful and it's not overpowering. It's kind of scary looking at first, because it pours so dark, but the flavor doesn't smack you in the mouth. It's just not a beer to drink in big sips.

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Photo of Krusse02
3.6/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Actually tasted like the lines weren't cleaned at this bar so don't know if this will be accurate. Surprising citrus flavor but taste and carbonation seemed flat so will blame it on dirty lines

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Photo of Damian
3.6/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Drank from a 12 fl. oz. bottle

Thanks to my girlfriend Nari for bringing this one back from Ohio.

Poured a dark mahogany with caramel-colored highlights and a bubbly, light beige, one-finger head that slowly faded to a thick ring. Some spotty streaks of lacing cascaded down the sides of the glass.

Aroma was sweet and rich and consisted of strong notes of dark chocolate, coffee and roasted malts, along with hints of brown sugar, maple syrup and a general woodiness.

Taste was a mix of deep, dark flavors. Roasted malts, bitter espresso and a distinct nutty flavor came through strong along with sweet malts and some creaminess. A touch hoppy on the back end with a remarkably clean, dry finish. Well balanced. Initially, I did not detect any aftertaste, but later some pleasant, subtle coffee notes became apparent.

Mouthfeel was disappointingly thin, yet smooth.

This beer is a good example of the style, though not too exciting.

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Photo of BigMike
3.6/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best by date of 10-10-10

Pours a deep brown mohogany color with some ruby red around the edges. A fluffy tan head of about two fingers tops it off.
So the bottle description is pretty right on as far as the nose goes. Bittersweet chocolate, some smoke and a touch of coffee.
Taste is like the nose only lighter. Chocolate, coffee and I get some light blueberry notes in the background.
Mouthfeel is light and almost watery. I would like it if the carbonation level was a little smaller.
Pretty nice porter. I was expecting alot more from it after seeing it's high ranking and I was a little disappointed. Mouthfeel was to bubbly and thin and a little watery.

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Photo of maximum12
3.6/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to beerisheaven for throwing this in as an extra to another fine trade, although he didn't include Demi Moore. A top 100 beer I haven't tried yet, with almost 1,000 reviews? Has to be good!

Black. Nice head, which I still fail to understand the appeal of, but it's there. Smells more like coffee than I expected.

Taste is full & robust for a regular ole' porter. The coffee is prominent, sharing time but not hogging the stage with the malts. Mouth on this might be it's strength, as the porter is the epitome of smooth, creamy, & easy-drinking.

Overall a very good beer. Happy to have tried it & impressed that an American Porter can stick in the BA Top 100 in this moment of big, bad, kick-ass brews. Salut!

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Photo of JerseyKirk
3.62/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: very thin tan head. Cleared quickly. Black but light shines through brown on the top and bottom.

S: chocolate, dark chocolate, coffee and tobacco, prune, malt sweetness.

T: Chocolate, black patent, really roasty middle that clears to a clean finish. Slight molasses but definitely roasty coffee with some dark chocolate. No lingering bitterness. Very clean finish.

M: medium body and carbed appropriately.

O: didn't stand up to the hype. Just a roasty coffee porter that definitely uses black patent or other high roast malt to give it a burnt coffee flavor. Easy drinker but not a standout. Could prove useful for those that aren't used to bolder flavors.

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Photo of Westsidethreat
3.62/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Clean, slightly translucent porter. Soft beige head fell quickly now just remains as a patch memory and subtle ring around the glass.

S: Smells great! Coffee, bourbon, chocolate pudding, bit of oak.

T: Begins with a bit of slightly sour milk then transitions to a medium burnt coffee flavor. Almost a charred quality with burnt aspects, but very subtle. Ends with a touch of burnt butter. The flavors are all very subtle...

M: Bit thinner than I would have thought, but as the beer opens so does the body.

D: Not as complex as I had hoped. For the reviews, I expected more. Much better porters out there IMO.

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Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald Porter from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
4.26 out of 5 based on 6,413 ratings.
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