Name: Fuller’s London Porter
Brewery: Fuller Smith & Turner
Country of Origin: United Kingdom (England)
City & State: Chiswick, London
Style: English Porter
Alcohol Content (ABV): 5.4%
First Brewed: 1996
Dark as midnight, although crimson tints appear if held to the light. A soft and smooth nose of creamy toffee. The palate sees the luxuriant toffee character joined by roasty notes, before yielding to a smooth, dry, and long finish, which also has a hint of vanilla.
The beer is said to be “dark as midnight”… and I like that. When I am going to drink a dark beer, I want to drink a DARK beer. I found a bunch of Fuller’s at Jungle Jim’s a few weeks ago, and they were cheap. So I grabbed all I could. This one is in the fridge, it’s cold, and I am thirsty. So tonight we are drinking one of these!
Oh, and I will tell you I grabbed a can of CHAKA from Sun King. The beer is $18 for 4 cans… but my good buddy John hooked me up. Anyway, let’s dig into this porter.
In the Glass: The beer does pour black as midnight. There is a nice frothy head that makes way for a thick and polished looking lace. This beer is promising to be good. Friend and fellow beer drinker Scott Shrewsberry said, “One of the better porters out there regardless of being one of the most popular.” I hope he’s right!
Nose: I could smell this before it was even in the glass. I was punched in the face with notes of caramel and chocolate. When I stick my nose in the glass, I am reminded of those caramel notes I experienced while pouring and some dark burnt chocolate that is coming through. This beer also smells sweet, but dry.
Flavor: The flavor starts before I can even finish the first swallow. The typical porter flavors circle the tongue, and then you are hit with the sweetness that I could smell all along the way. Then it gets sour. Not sure where the sour is coming from, but I like it. It then quickly settles into that dark dryness that you expect out of a good English style porter. I can see myself sitting alone in a pub drinking these as I clock watch until the sun comes up.
Mouthfeel: There isn’t much going on… well, besides flavor. There is little carbonation, and the drink is smooth and to the point. The beer would be easy to chug, especially on draft. I wonder if you can get this on cask anywhere. I am sure if you could, the nose would be much more intense.
Aftertaste: The aftertaste is what I wish more porters tasted like. It is sweet, dark, and dry. It’s like drinking a really good gin. You want… you demand that dry finish. The aftertaste sticks around for a little bit too, and leaves you with some notes of chocolate.
This is a GOOD beer. Scott was right, I can see why this beer would be so popular. I am not sure why they serve it in a 11.2 ounce bottle… but I am sure that has something to do with the way they measure beer across the pond. If you can get your hands on this, do. Bottoms up, people!
Fuller’s London Porter – The bottle says: “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 malts.
“The Griffin Brewery in Chiswick, London, has been brewing fine ales since 1654.
“The Fuller, Smith and Turner partnership, dating back to 1845, brews an excellent range of award-winning ales, many of which are available in the YSA, including London Pride pale ale and the world’s original ESB. I hope you will enjoy trying all our fine ales.”
Tonight we are reviewing a porter. I love porters, and if you have read this blog much at all you know that my favorite beer is actually a porter. So let’s hope this one is good too.
It looks pretty good in the glass. Very dark, thick, almost black. There is not much head, though. It smells pretty good, too. What I smell first is chocolate, then some coffee. Burnt coffee. Did Starbucks make a beer? Just kidding. I’m sure, though, that being a porter, this beer is going to be one of those that is better a little bit warm. Oh well… too bad we are drinking it straight from the fridge. Let’s find out tastes when it is cold, anyway.
Yum. I like this one. It’s bitter, like drinking dark chocolate. I was right about that chocolate smell being the first one that hits you; it’s definitely the first and most prominent thing you taste as well. This beer is better a little bit warm, but it’s been sitting on my table for a few minutes, so it’s honestly not too bad. Really, this tastes just like drinking a cup of dark chocolate… that is by far what you taste the most. There’s not a lot of aftertaste, but what is there is like the taste you have left on your tongue after eating a piece of dark chocolate. That coffee that I smelled is blown away by all the chocolate taste. But… well, guess what? I love dark chocolate! Definitely would buy this one again.
905 bottles of beer on the wall…