a heavy, dark-brown ale made with malt browned by drying at a high temperature.
1720–30; short for porter's ale, appar. orig. brewed for porters
Rogue Ales' Mocha Porter has grown on me since first trying it last year. It's dark brown with a thick tan foam. As the name implies, it has a strong mocha aroma. Though the Mocha Porter has a nice balance of hops and malt, it's pretty bitter and could benefit from a bit more sweetness. This overwhelming bitterness fades as the beer warms, and it becomes quite pleasing. As far as Rogue's brews go, I much prefer their Chocolate Stout, which has a stronger chocolate flavor and will also be featured here in the February Beer Review: Stouts. 5.3%ABV.
Thankfully, Sierra Nevada's Porter is not the epic fail that is their Celebration Fresh Hop Ale! It is the average porter. It's a deep brown, not quite ebony with a hint of tan foam. It has a strong coffee aroma and bitter flavors of over-roasted coffee and burnt toffee. Not unlike the Celebration Ale, the Porter has a very hoppy finish. It's medium-bodied and verges on over-carbonation. This porter isn't terrible by any means, but more pleasing porters are out there. 5.6%ABV.
Anchor Brewing Company has been brewing porter since the early 1970s. Anchor Porter is ebony, too dark to determine clarity. When properly poured, it has a thick and creamy tan head that forms long-lasting lacing on the glass. It has a faint aroma of roasty malts. Anchor Porter has a superb bittersweet chocolate and coffee flavor. It's moderately heavy and well-carbonated. The label proclaims, "It is aesthetically pleasing and wholly superior in every respect." This is certainly a bold statement, and Anchor Porter does not disappoint. 5.6%ABV.
Bell's Brewery, Inc. produces a palatable porter as well. It is the darkest of dark browns with a quickly dissipating tan head. Bell's porter is smooth and rich, smelling and tasting of roasty malts. It has only the slightest bitterness and quite a bit of carbonation. This porter is certainly very tasty but doesn't have anything special to offer, particularly for a Bell's brew. Bell's offers a variety of specialties that have pleased my palate, such as the Cherry Stout, which will be featured here in next month's beer review. 5.6%ABV.