Saranac Maple Porter | Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

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Saranac Maple PorterSaranac Maple Porter
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
New York, United States | website

Style: English Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-07-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
85
Ratings:
118
Avg:
3.59
pDev:
18.94%
 
 
Wants:
6
Gots:
5
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 85 | Ratings: 118
Photo of oriolesfan4
2.97/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a beautiful dark brown color, nice off white head to it with plenty of lacing. One of the more appealing pours I've seen in a while. The taste was a little disappointing for me. Has an alright mouthfeel but there's really nothing special taste wise about this one. Barely even a hint of maple and not much of the usual roastiness found in a porter. Drinkable, but not really memorable for flavorful for me.

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Photo of oberon
3.8/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint glass a mix of dark brown and ruby, a thinner off white head atop, leaving minimal lace as it settled quickly.Decent aromas mainly of roast and chocolate malt,a light leafy note shows through as the beer warms as well.A pretty balanced porter with good roast and earthy tones, mixed with sweetish chocolate and a hint of that maple syrup.A little prickly in the mouth but this a decent porter to be had.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.34/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Years ago, a dear, old friend of mine purchased an entire six-pack of Saranac's Caramel Porter for me, as they thought it'd go over well with me. I like porters, I do appreciate caramel. What could possibly go wrong? All I recall is a harshly cloying sweetness and the fact that those six bottles lasted me a long, long time. Who knows, maybe they've tweaked it since then, and here's hoping this isn't a repeat of last time except with maple instead of caramel flavoring.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown body with some dark amber tones to it - like fine, aged leather. Thinnish, ivory-hued head.

Smell: Sweet-scented aroma with a wry wink from Mrs. Butterworth. Notes of maple flavoring, Cadbury chocolate, and burnt grains and roasted nuts tossed with table sugar.

Taste: For me, the maple syrup additive doesn't really dominate, instead mingled in amongst the other strong, sugary sweet tastes of chocolate, sugar-dosed coffee, cola, and pecan pie filling. Minor bitterness derived from the leafy English hops. Light astringency lurking on the back half. Sugary, malty, crisp finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Well, thankfully, it wasn't exactly the jarring experience I had with the Caramel Porter six or so years ago. The sweetness really bucks the overall drinkability of this one. A curious concoction, though I feel the two bottles in the winter 12-pack will be more than enough for me.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.3/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Perhaps my favorite of the day I saved this one for last. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, I enjoyed this one considerably on 02/21/2010.
 

The pour was very well done. Rich, dark amber in color, pretty much a hazelnut brown in tone and a nice and thin head of white that came up and over and settled down nicely on the top of the glass. Letting itself settle down it then came in to a light, but interesting rocky crown. Aroma is sweet, maple, brown sugar, lots of roasted nuts and malts all coming through very clearly and evening here. Warming brings them out even more so. Very well done. Rich and warming taste, smoky with hints of maple and a caramel sweetness that really just seemed to push it together very, very nicely. Light touch of bittering hops in the finish and a smooth overall presentation led to a very fine representation of the style.

 
Overall a very, very solid ale and probably my favorite of the mix. I would have no issue at all with this one again.

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Photo of russpowell
3.15/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a copper tinged chestnut with 1 finger+ of cream colored head. Above average lacing & average head retention

S: Maple syrup and not much else...

T: Maple syrup, a touch of caramel with leafy & a bit of metallic hops up front. Dryness & a touch cloying sweetness dominate as this warms, not falling in love with this. Finishes with slight astringency & more fake maple sweetness & a bit of roastyness shows up too late to save the cause...

MF: Light bodied with moderate carbonation

Drinks okay, but between the thinness & the fake flavor I'll pass on this one next time...

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.22/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Just like a good, old-fashioned porter: dark, relatively clear coal-worker's brown; a bit of a Tiger-Eye effect when light oh-so-rudely pushed its way through. Speaking of coal, a good amount of toast comes through in the nose, some oddly satisfying combination of cooking smoke (as opposed to arson smoke) and dark pancake syrup. Damn, when they say "maple" they really mean it. Fair enow. Let's not forget the brown sugar and cinnamon in there as well, much less the possibility of nutmeg. At first, the spice rack is subdued on the tongue, with the sycophantic dark wheats receiving the favor instead. Not to be outdone, the spices roar back like the royal lion (rampant, natch), unseating those brown brown-nosers and bringing some winter oven goodness to the court. The king, he claps. The merriment is not too light, and the effervescence of the courtiers properly somewhat subdued, allowing the royals to soar above the room, leaving the whole land smiling beneath a short blanket of snow. And a hey-nonny-nonny.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.65/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The label brings back memories from my first job working tapping maple trees in the hills of West Virginia with a retired local surgeon. Collecting sap and boiling it down at the sugar shack, I love this process and outcome... true maple syrup is a godly creation. This porter pours a dark cola brown caramel ruby highlights. Large khaki tan head forsm thick with chunky lacing. Aroma has dark chocolate cocoa and an air of maple syrup about it nice sweet dark and roasty a good mix for the senses. Flavor is upfront with the sweet maple syrup additions with a nice straight forward porter with dark roasts bringing mild chocolate and coffee in the finihs. Herbal earthy hops come to play with a touch of bitterness really an English style porter with maple syrup flavoring. Mouthfeel is medium bodied moderate carbonation a bit cloying with the acidic nature of the finish with thos maple syrup notes. Drinkability overall is decent not a beer I'm dying to try again but very tolerable and at times straight up enjoyable.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.66/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

The pour produced a finger of deep-tan head exploding with CO2 bubbles. Color was a deep cola-brown with ruby highlights and NE-quality clarity. Nose had a coffee-like roastiness accompanied by a chocolaty sweetness. Mouthfeel seemed thin for a porter and the prevalent taste on the tongue was a roasted bitterness, almost coffee-like. The finish was when I really caught the maple syrup flavoring mentioned on the neck of the bottle. Frankly, as one of the six different beers in the Twelve Beers of Winter pack, I was satisfied. Viva la difference, especially for the price! On its own, perhaps not so much.

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Photo of stakem
3.71/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very clear dark amber color with a thin lace of slightly tanned head. Minor retension and a bit of spotty lacing around the glass. The color really threw me for a loop, to me it looks more like a brown ale than a porter. Nose has a sweetness similar to brown sugar mixed with malt and a touch of hops. Taste is sweet upfront but not malty sweet, more of a sugar-like sweetness I am guessing from the maple addition. Kinda bland tasting throughout the body to a minorly bitter finish. Light feel and moderately carbed, it finished quite crisp. It is not bad, the maple seems a bit much and overall nothing exciting.

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Photo of jwc215
3.15/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours brown, light for a porter - weak looking - but, it does have a mapleish-colored look and a nice, creamy white head that stays and leaves lacing.

Smells more of an English nut brown than a porter - nutty, slight roast - with a touch of maple syrup. Nice enough, though. Fairly mild.

The taste is sweet - sticky maple syrup dominates - backed by caramel, nuts, some chocolate. A touch of English hops (Fuggles and East Kent Golding, as per label on the neck) give some slight spiciness and dry balance, though it remains sweet throughout and lingering. Sticky sweet maple syrup lingers well into aftertaste.

It's on the weak/watery side for a supposed "robust" porter. Maple syrup hangs on for long time considering how thin it is. A tad more thinness or bubbles and it would fall apart. It does have enough body to "pass" but that's about it.

Weak, but "different" and not "bad". The maple, though balanced slightly, does dominate, but really, in the end it does get tiresome after the bottle is done and it's just too sweet without much body or depth. Still - if you like maple syrup it's worth giving it a shot.

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Photo of WesWes
3.48/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a tranlucent brown color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a dry, roasted malt scent with a little crystal malt sweetness. There is little to no maple aroma. The taste is decent as well. It has a dry, roasted malt flavor with hints of maple syrup in the finish. There is light sweetness with a bone dry aftertaste. The mouthfeel is average. It is a medium bodied beer with prickly carbonation. This could be a really good beer, but it needs some basic adjustments.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Saranac Maple Porter, poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. A rich brown in color with an off white head.

Aroma is surprisingly light and suggesting malt sweetness.

Flavor is straight up maple syrup. Lightly toasted malt in the background with muted caramel notes, but mainly a sweet maple characteristic. Sweet maple syrup.

Mouthfeel is full bodied and smooth.

This is an over the top offering from Saranac. For those fond of maple syrup and sweet malty beers, this is for you. A memorable and flavorful beer.

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Photo of plaid75
3.68/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a brown hue with amber streaks and a two finger frothy tan head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured caramel, cocoa, smoke and maple.

The taste was upfront caramel and maple with a dry roasted malt at the finish.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a tasty addition to the Saranac stable.

 331 characters

Photo of puboflyons
3.57/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle marked 2659-1138. Sampled on November 12, 2009. It pours an opaque brown-red and is not as dark as traditional Porters. There is almost no head and what there is simmers down to nothing in no time. There is a notable maple scent with the malts and hops but it is not overpowering. The mouthfeel is of medium body. The taste has a more pure maple flavor than the aroma. The roadted malts and hops are almost secondary. I feel like I'm drinking a bottle of maple syrup but it is nowhere near as thick. Interesting beer although it seems more suited for early spring when the maple sap is flowing.

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Photo of akorsak
3.68/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A bottle from the 12 beers of winter.

A: The porter is a dark coffee color, a robust brown that resembles black. One when light shines through do the reddish brown hues become more apparent. A small head, less than 1/2 a finger, left thin spots of lace behind.

S: The nose is driven by a syrupy caramel aroma, far stronger than either the maple or porter aspects. The maple is mild, lingering behind the caramel.

T: The porter has a roasted grain flavor, warming and burnt. Paired with it is a syrupy melange of caramel and maple. Both are sweet with caramel standing out just a little more. The maple operates behind the scenes, subtly adding sugary sweetness.

M: The mouthfeel is sweet, driven by caramel and maple, until it hits the bitterness of the porter. The ale seems undercarbonated, allowing the sweetness to linger.

D: A good porter. It lacks the normal Saranac house flavor, which is unusual for one of their ales.

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Photo of Brad007
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown color with a one-finger head into my glass. Looks normal for the style.

Aroma has a hint of maple, cream and roasted coffee. Just a hint of chocolate malt is present as well.

Taste is full of maple that isn't too weak nor too powerful. Just enough hint of cream and roasted coffee as well.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin but the flavors mentioned do linger. However, the maple leaves a bit of a sweet, odd feeling on the tongue.

Well, it is a maple porter. I just wish it was a bit thicker. Also, the maple tastes kind of fake as well. Regardless, still drinkable.

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Photo of tigg924
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: leather/reddish brown in color, 1/4 inch head, high carbonation, clear

Smell: maple, nut, and toasted malt

Taste: toasted malt, nut, and a big maple taste that starts in the middle and lasts through

Mouthfeel: smooth, dry, big sweet finish, high carbonation

Drinkability: A very solid sessionable beer. This is in a high tier of maple beer, probably just after, Tommyknocker and Kanc County. The maple is a tad artificial tasting, but not enough to throw off the enjoyment. This is my favorite in the winter pack.

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Photo of Brenden
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had a couple Saranacs on Christmas with my wife's cousin's husband. I made thorough notes, as I intended to review when I could.

The color is a deep, dark brown that has some clarity but is thick and dark enough that I can't see through it. A light brown head forms at less than one finger, lingers for a little while, and dissipates, leaving spotty lacing.
The aroma is heavily of malts, seemingly a few varieties, with a smokiness. It is a little nutty as well, with a little earthiness underneath it all. Maple is not as strongly pronounced as it could be, though present. A caramel note lingers as well. The aroma is fairly sturdy and makes for a decent presence, but lacks the strength, balance and complexity to put this with the big boys.
I couldn't detect anything in the taste that wasn't in the smell, nor did I fail to detect anything that was in it. It simply follows suit exactly. I have to say that the smokiness probably had the strongest presence after the malts, whereas most would expect the maple to maintain that instead.
The mouthfeel is neither impressive nor unimpressive. There's a little crispness, it's fairly smooth, and it's not too thin. It could, however, improve in all three aspects to make it more enjoyable. The body is medium to full and carbonation is light.
There's nothing holding me back from drinking this one again; in a room full of BMCs I'm definitely going for this, and in a room full of, say, Fuller's or Samuel Smith's (keeping with style), I'd reach for those instead.

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Photo of cosmicevan
3.72/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 120z bottle.

A - Poured a deep rich cheery color with a thin bubbly head with loose lacing. The beer looks great, but does not look like a Porter at all...oddly reddish/amberish for a porter.

S - Chocolate dominates the smell. Strong hints of maple, coffee, toffee, and caramel. Very nice mix of sweet smells.

T - Interesting. Chocolate sticks out and dominates the flavor. You can definitely taste the maple as well as caramel and toffee.

M - Little sweet and thick for what I like about a Porter. A bit syrupy.

D - Better than the average Saranac, but not the best example of a Porter...a bit thick to drink many. Fortunately it is currently a part of the winter collection...2 seems right in the pack.

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Photo of Gmann
3.38/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown color with some amber highlights peaking through. Big frothy khaki colored head that left some nice lacing on the side of the pint, settling into a nice cap. The aroma is of caramel malt and maple syrup, quite sweet. Some toffee and metal notes. Kind of like a coffee flavored candy. Very light roasted malt flavor, a touch grainy, maple syrup, burnt toffee, finishes with a lemony tart/bitterness. The feel is quite light with fizzy carbonation. The maple syrup sweetness would probably get cloying after one beer. An ok porter, probably could use some more body and roasted flavor. The maple isn't terrible but would probably be better suited with more of a malt body.

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Photo of buschbeer
4.07/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Well, this beer is the whole reason I bought the 12 beers of winter. Let's see how it goes . . .

I poured into a pint glass to a modest tan head. This beer is reddish brown in color. It's a lot lighter than what I'm used to. The maple smell wafted to my nose immediately. After going in nose first I also got some milk chocolate, too. The taste is a little disappointing. It's good but not great. I get a sweet maple, chocolate taste. I would prefer it to be more pronounced. It is probably the best Saranac I've had to date, but that's like saying I took the cutest fat chick to prom.

Cheers!

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.26/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 2/14/2010. Bottle. Pours a clear dark brown with a thick light tan head. Aroma of sweet caramel malt, residual sugars. Flavor is quite full of maple syrup, which basically dominates the flavor along with some sweet caramel malt and brown sugar. Well, it is what it advertises. The aroma is pretty poor but the flavor is not too bad -- overall, a decent, maplely beer (although not a classic porter at all; it barely resembles a porter actually).

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Photo of CHickman
3.16/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear chestnut brown with a 1/2 inch creamy beige head; smells of maple syrup, brown sugar, roasted malt, caramel, grass and some light hops, with the maple syrup being the dominant aroma. OK lacing that doesn't grab the glass too long.

Tastes like it smells, with strong maple syrup up front, brown sugar, roasted malt, caramel, grass, light hops, with the malt and syrup sweetness taking up the middle until a slight bitter end assumingly from the hops. It's very light for a porter and seems more like a brown ale, as it has a very smooth creamy feel on the tongue and slides down easy. The carbonation is very light, to the point of being watery. The aftertaste is a mix of vanilla, malty chocolate and once again the maple syrup. While the maple syrup is the foundation for this beer, and the maple syrup taste is not bad, it just seems to be overkill as the recurring theme doesn't allow the other ingredients to show off or add any flavor.

This beer is surprisingly light, easy drinking and goes down smooth, but it's a tad too sweet for my liking. It was OK and I'd have it again if it came in a Saranac variety pack, but I would never buy a six pack of this beer. Nice effort and experiment by Saranac, just not my cup of tea. It might be a good breakfast beer if you were out all night, but not a session beer.

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Photo of dsa7783
2.38/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Copped as part of a twelve-pack winter variety sampler... Certainly not your conventional English porter... Watered-down taste and flavor... Weak output...Few hints of maple if any in the overall flavor profile... Not impressed with this offering... I have often looked down on Saranac beers as macro in taste... Average stuff and not recommended...

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.53/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Saranac- Maple Porter

(My 37th different beer from Saranac.)

A- Nice copper brown, clear, mild carbonation, and a thick heavy lacing head.
S- Good hit of sweet sugary maple syrup, molasses, and toffee malt.
T- Very sweet sugary/ sticky maple syrup. Nice hints of caramel/ toffee/ butterscotch, molasses, pecan nuts maybe and a touch of chocolate malt.
M- Sticky sweet with a maple spicy body and a earthy dry woodsy hop finish.

Overall- Very enjoyable, could use a little more Mmphh but another good offering from Saranac. This years Winter variety pack is quite a good buy for $14!

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Saranac Maple Porter from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 85 ratings.
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