Bobo's Robust Porter
Big Sky Brewing Company

Bobo's Robust PorterBobo's Robust Porter
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Robust Porter
Ranked #46
Ranked #20,194
3.85 | pDev: 10.65%
Big Sky Brewing Company
Montana, United States
Very Good
Bobo's Robust PorterBobo's Robust Porter
Notes: A small bottle with big flavor! Brewed with six different malts and generously hopped, robust doesn't really begin to describe this beer. Smooth chocolate flavors with hints of Coffee, Caramel and Vanilla. Hop presence is copious and is matched by rich malt flavors.

32 IBU
Reviews: 108 | Ratings: 245 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rodbeermunch
rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.61/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Man has Big Sky's distro shrunk in the last 5 years. Rarely see their stuff anymore. Anyways, another beer out of the 2014 shooting pile.

Pours a dark brown befitting of the 'robust' label for a porter. Lighter brown head in the 1/2" range. Average retention for style. Aroma hit the earthy roasted malt feels.

The taste hits those coffee from the roasted malt notes. Middle of the road bitterness. Good mouth feel, relatively easy to drink. Packs a good amount of chewy content into a relatively low abv brew. Crushing 12 oz isn't a chore at all. Is this the base beer for their cowboy coffee porter? Crisp and not a weighed down soggy feel to the mouth feel. Carbonated just right. I think its a good gateway intro beer for porters. Has all the hallmarks, no adjuncts, and it isn't something you have to Chicago pour to get through. You can reasonably drink multiples of this if you wanted to, can see this going nicely after a coffee beer on an early morning fishing trip.

Dec 12, 2019
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The-Adjunct-Hippie from South Dakota

4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle poured into New Belgium snifter.

Really lovely thick dark ashy black pour with a slick looking body and a tall BROWN head of 2 fingers. Lots of lace left behind. Stellar stuff.

Aroma is of metallic coffee and roast malts, with slight aromas of lactose, milk chocolate, and plain oatmeal. Slight black pepper.

Black pepper spiciness opens this up, with mild fudge and chocolate, espresso, a little bit of YooHoo, oatmeal, leafy hop bite, and burnt brownie. A good amount of smoke and pepper continue on in a pleasant fashion.

Feel is also what I'd call ideal for a Robust Porter. Creamy, and thick but not too thick, with the right amount of carbonation. Slight starch on the finish but not overly so, but that's my only dock.

Overall...check this one out. It's very delicious and complex, and brings a lot to the table. Probably the NW's best porter outside of Deschute's Black Butte.

Jan 21, 2019
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Darkmagus82 from Texas

3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Appearance- The beer is served a dark brown nearly black color with a one finger head of tan foam. The head is very retentive, fading slowly over time to leave a light level of foam on the sides of the glass.
Smell - The aroma of the brew is huge of roasted malt and smells of coffee. Along with these aromas comes some light notes after vanilla, cocoa, and grain.
Taste- The taste begins with lots of roasted and toasted malt with a light showing of a coffee taste. As the taste advances, the coffee gets stronger and stronger, becoming more and more pronounced. All the while, the taste sweetens quite a bit more as more caramel and some brown sugar comes to the tongue. With even more coffee and some burnt roast coming to the tongue at the end, one is left with a robust (for a 5.8% abv. brew), roasty, and coffee taste to linger on the tongue.
Mouthfeel- The body of the brew is moderate in thickness with a carbonation level that is low. The carbonation level is perfect for the dark and roast, but a little thicker body may have been slightly better. Overall the feel was decent.
Overall- A fairly nice more roasty and coffee porter that isn't too overly sweet. Not too shabby!!

Oct 08, 2018
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MonDak_Joe1953 from Minnesota

3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 12oz bottle into glass. No bottling date information found.
Deep brown colored body. Initial pour brings forth half a finger of tan head, which dissipates to a small island and ring. No lacing.
Smells of dark roasted malts, with notes of chocolate, coffee, caramel, and a hint of licorice.
Taste is rich with the dark roasted malts (which are robust but not burnt nor charred). Chocolate, coffee, and slightly sweet caramel. Slightly chalky.
Medium, creamy mouth feel. Low carbonation.
Solid but not spectacular porter. Taste has depth but is a little thin.

Sep 07, 2018
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Lone_Freighter from Vermont

3.99/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was poured into a becher pint glass. The appearance was a black color with a finger’s worth of off white foamy head that fell off at a decent pace. Sly messy lace. The aroma had some roasted coffee beans, subtle grounds, light wood, some earthiness, dried leaf, some hay and just a touch of vanilla at the very end. The flavor was roasty and sweet combining it all fairly nice and added a touch of clean caramel malt. Aftertaste slightly leaned closer to the roastiness. Finish was somewhat dry and roasty. The palate was almost medium bodied, sitting just a tad under and having a decent sessionable sort of smooth feel along my tongue. Carbonation felt fine. ABV felt fine. Overall, pretty nice porter that I could have again.

Jun 09, 2017
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stevoj from Idaho

3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Deep and dark, semi sweet chocolate and roast grains. Thick brown foamy head. Aroma is soft and sweet, taste brings the bitterness, and lingers on the palate, like melted chocolate. A keeper.

Jan 15, 2016
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UCLABrewN84 from California

3.56/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, and char aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa, char, and dark fruit flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roast bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a nice balance between roast and fruit qualities all around.

Serving type: bottle.

Dec 27, 2014
Photo of pat61
pat61 from Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev +10.4%

Deep dark brown, thin film of a head, light espresso, chocolate, caramel, creamy smooth, good for people who do not like a lot of roast bitterness, very drinkable, almost sessionable, chocolate and dark but not roasted malts.

Oct 17, 2014
Photo of bnes09
bnes09 from Illinois

4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Dark chocolate brown and completely opaque. Thin, creamy head on the pour. Decent retention.

Sweet, malty, roasted aroma.

Dense, malty, fruity, roasted flavor. All in perfect balance. Smooth molasses. Rich toffee and toasted almond. Fresh baked biscuits with maple spread. Mild earthy hop blends perfectly, allowing the malts to shine through.

Medium to full bodied with lots of malt texture. Low-medium carbonation. Smooth, rich feel.

Exactly what a porter should be.

Jun 09, 2014
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ExaltedNecrosis from Texas

3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle poured into glass mug.

A - Pours black with a finger and a half of dark brown creamy head.

S - There is a good amount of roastiness in the aroma and I pick up some coffee and chocolate

T - This is heavy on the roastiness. I get roasted, perhaps even burnt, coffee, with semi-sweet chocolate and a general nuttiness. I like the roast but it's on the edge of being too burnt. Wish the chocolate was sweeter, too.

M - Moderate body with low-to-moderate carbonation.

O - A decent porter with good chocolate, coffee, and nut notes. Just a bit heavy on the roast.

May 24, 2014
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Honisbygonis from North Carolina

3.24/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

App: almost no head, with syrup black look, and a cherry sweet moderate aroma once poured to pint

Entree: first few sips, and the cherry taste hits you, which unpleasantly then stays with you through to the aftertaste; however, third the way thru pint, cherry dissipates enough, and now tastes like a weakened porter should (weaker meaning almost a metallic taste, and an abnormal aftertaste compared to your standard porters).

Dessert: Another limited release ( just prior sampled the Avery New World hopped Porter), and oddly, would have to go Avery over Bobo's on this one.

May 04, 2014
Photo of Brenden
Brenden from Ohio

4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is nearly black and it's looking pretty thick, too. The head that rises on top is a strong, rocky medium brown one with some staying power and heft. The lacing it leaves clinging to the glass is patchy and plenteous.
This beer is consistent from aroma to flavor and is pretty much a standard-setter for the so-called "robust porter," almost a style in its own right now. Where it keeps from crossing from porter to stout may be a mystery, but it's got the necessities: a big, strong, roasty malt backbone, a dry sort of edge with just a little sweetness cutting the char and roast from being acrid, heavier notes of barley-like grains, and the dark chocolate & coffee (in this case grounds) combo that comes with it all.
The body has the appropriate robustness, not disappointing, in a big, full body with an ashy dryness most of the way though. Crispness is light but sustained with nice smoothness.

Apr 28, 2014
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BeerWithMike from Nebraska

4.25/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Sampling right now on 4/26/14. Bottle chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured into a vintage 'Schlitz' pilsner glass.

Poured a pitch-black in color that you can't see through at all with a small beige head. Just a small trace of lacing is seen but not much. The aroma is of roasted malts, bitter-sweet chocolate with a mild hint of vanilla. The taste has more going on with the bitter-sweet chocolate hitting your tongue first followed by the roasted malts, a hint of coffee and a trace of vanilla. Actually very smooth with no bitter aftertaste. Perfect carbonation.

Apr 27, 2014
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WoodBrew from Ohio

3.8/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Sit Bobo....sit...Good dog...for those who are in and round 40yrs will know what reference I just put down. Bobo poured an opaque black with ecru head that is thick and leaving some lace. The scent has roast and hints of chocolate. The taste has some coffee, caramel and peat. The mouthfeel is lighter in body with good carbonation. Overall its an ok porter....definitely sessionable.

Apr 19, 2014
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MaximalC from Illinois

3.87/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours dark brown with a thin khaki head that soon dissipates into a patchy veil. Aroma smells of pure dark chocolate with a hint of caramel (imagine a Ghirardelli's dark chocolate caramel square melted down into beer form).

The flavor comes through on the promise of the aroma, with rich, roasty dark chocolate all over, invoking baker's chocolate and hot cocoa. The roasted malt is positively singed, with acrid bitterness growing from front to back. I might have found this objectionable had it not paired so well with the chocolate. In this context, though, it works. The dark chocolate and roasted character are married by a chalky essence that lingers into the finish. Whatever hops are present are mild and earthy, accentuating the rugged, robust character of the beer. The medium body is bolstered by a fine, vigorous carbonation that lends a semi-creamy mouthfeel.

This is one of my early favorites from back in the day, and I'm glad to say it withstands the test of time. This is a no-frills foray into what good, chocolately, roasted malt tastes like. Bobo's is both flavorful and highly drinkable, making a good session beer for those colder times of the year (like late March in Chicago...).

Mar 26, 2014
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archyquaffer from Montana

2.89/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Poured from a longneck into an oversized pilsener glass. A moderate pour produces about one inch of light brown head, which proves not terribly sticky for this type of beer. The beer is a very dark reddish-brown which scarcely admits light.

Lots of roasted malt on the nose and palate. The number one flavor is probably hours-old coffee which has a rather burnt, acrid note. There may be some unsweetened chocolate trying to come through. Some lingering and rather unpleasant astringent bitterness in the aftertaste. The body is rather heavy, and more like a stout.

I don't particularly care for this beer- to my mind it could have a little more chocolate, maybe some nuttiness, and not so much of a burnt coffee flavor. The aftertaste is what really kills it for me- it is really kind of a yucky, involuntary reflex kind of bitterness, and not pleasant at all.

Mar 06, 2014
Photo of Redneckwine
Redneckwine from Washington

3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 12oz bottle to pint glass

Appearance - stout like, darkest brown possible to black, opaque clarity with no light coming through. Minimal head, minimal lacing

Smell - getting lots of char, bitter chocolate, coffee, whiff of grassy hops

Feel/Taste - Smooth, creamy body, light carb. Medium light body. Taste is of very roasty coffee and chocolate, earthy/grassy light hops, feint fruity notes as well on the finish. Lightly bitter and dry on the finish also.

Overall - An enjoyable, flavorful porter. This damn near borders on stout territory for me, minus a little body. The roasty character is very prominent in this brew. Big sky definitely nailed what they were going for here: a robust porter.

Jan 31, 2014
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SerialHiker from Illinois

3.49/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours the darkest possible brown to black…thick, mocha colored head…tight tiny bubbles making a solid layer of foam…a nice looking beer…(3.75/5)

Smell: Chocolate…strong dark chocolate aroma up front…yummy chocolate! Roasted malts, vanilla, milk…a creamy chocolate porter…I’m talking, breaking up a chocolate bar then inhaling the tiny chips…(4/5)

Taste: Rich dark bitter chocolate surrounded by roasted malts, coffee, cream, vanilla…it’s got flavor, but it’s not complex…comes in very chocolaty, ends with coffee and cream…very roasted all the way through…it’s okay…(3.25/5)

Mouthfeel: Medium body with light carbonation…too light for my taste…smooth, wet…finishes with a bit of coffee bitterness…(3/5)

Overall: This beer is good, not great…the flavor is drinkable, but lacks a bit of pizzazz and almost goes towards “novelty”…it would probably be a better ice cream flavor than a beer…as it stands, if porters are your bag, than this is worth trying, but this wouldn’t be my first choice…I typically like beers that have flavor, not flavored…this is a run of the mill porter with heavy chocolate notes that separates it from others, but doesn’t take it to another level…(3.5/5)

Feb 10, 2013
Photo of jeremyd365
jeremyd365 from Michigan

4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

So this guy poured a solid motor oil with off white head. It smelled of sweet chocolatey coffee and tasted much the same. It's body seemed a little thin for how rich the flavor was, but overall a really enjoyable beer. I'd have it again for sure. As with most beers I really enjoy out of the bottle, I'd want to give the tap a go!

Nov 13, 2012
Photo of TMoney2591
TMoney2591 from Illinois

4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Gale Sayers shaker pint glass.

I think we've all known some dog that looks (and probably acts) exactly like Bobo... Anyway, this stuff pours a deep mahogany topped by a finger of bright tan foam. The nose comprises cocoa, coffee, light roasted malts, and a twinge of molasses. The taste brings in more of the same, with the roast coming through more strongly and the cocoa darkening a touch. There is a pronounced roastiness and, well, robustness present in this beer. The body is a stolid medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a sorta/kinda drying finish. Overall, a very nice strong porter, one that shows you can have some strong, robust flavor without resorting to high ABVs and overly-wacky adjunct additions. Good times.

Oct 31, 2012
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BirdsandHops from Oregon

3.25/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: pours black a finger of tan head that recedes into a thin ring with a little lacing.

S: roasted malts with creamy chocolate and some slight char.

T: roasted malts here as well with bitter chocolate, char, and some coffee.

M: medium-thick body with lowish carbonation, this beer could be a bit creamier or with more carbonation.

O: a decent porter overall, though nothing special.

Sep 12, 2012
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LiquidAmber from Washington

4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from 4/2010 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours an opaque black with a dark brown two finger head and heavy lacing. Aroma of dark malt, coffee and chocolate. Medium body and dark roasty malts with some pleasant smoky flavors. Tasty start and middle, tapers off at the finish. Nice dark, quite pleasant and enjoyable porter. I will buy again.

Aug 04, 2012
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divineaudio from Michigan

3.95/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pint glass.

a - pours an opaque dark brown shade. forms a finger thick, creamy, tan head that calms slowly to a thin film. leaves thin, leggy lacing in the glass.

s - chocolate, roast, faint char, faint raisin.

t - roasted malt with big dark chocolate flavor. some dark fruity notes and faint oxidation. nice earthy hop bitterness for balance. not super complex like some porters, but well done.

m - full bodied, adequate carbonation, coarser co2 profile.

o - solid overall and quite enjoyable. i'm surprised this doesn't have a higher rating on here as it can easily hold it's own against better known examples of the style. will definitely be picking up more of this.

Jul 24, 2012
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WastingFreetime from Wisconsin

3.53/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from tasting notes.

Pours out a very dark brown bordering on black with a tan frothy single finger head that lasts for about a minute but leaves minimal lacing behind. Smells of dark chocolate and charred malt, but not at a very strong level. Tastes much more solidly of dark chocolate and charred malt than the nose had implied, but not much more complexity than the nose had implied either. Medium body and carbonation levels. Pretty average as far as porters go IMHO.

Jun 22, 2012
Photo of Tuey13
Tuey13 from Illinois

4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours from the bottle midnight black with a small tan head that dissipates rather quickly.
The smell is roasted malt, dark chocolate, and coffee.. I also detect a little black licorice and vanilla as well... Smells wonderful!
The taste is robust indeed with a great roastinrss and dark bitter chocolate and coffee. I do taste a little caramel sweetness with a little hop flavors on the back end. Very rich and velvety feel also.
This is a very drinkable medium body porter.. Not to strong with a great taste. I would drink this more if not limited.
I always love Big Sky and get a kick out of their labels. ;)

Jun 04, 2012
Bobo's Robust Porter from Big Sky Brewing Company
Beer rating: 87 out of 100 with 245 ratings