I poured a 12oz bottle into a nonic pint glass. It was bottled in 2/21/13 and cost $2.75 ($0.23 per ounce).
Appearance: Opaque black body with no visible carbonation. Pours to a
large, tan, frothy head which laces and retains extremely well.
Smell: Typical porter aroma of dark malts and toffee sweetness. Slightly tangy.
Taste: There’s something bittersweet about drinking a traditional porter
from a traditional brewery. Anchor Porter epitomizes the style, which
makes it good in that it’s familiar. Though it’s also quite familiar,
almost cliché (if that term could ever apply to beer). It’s sweet, but
not overbearing and highly drinkable. If you want a good porter, you get
The bottle I was drinking was relatively old, which probably could have
been avoided had the brewery used an easier-to-read bottling date
instead of a code. I did detect some tanginess to the palette, though it
seemed to accentuate some of the notes. It begins with an English-like
taste with hints of fruit, but mostly dark, toasted malt. There’s
significant bitterness through the middle with a distinct peanut
brittle-like flavor all throughout the back end. It’s slightly tangy or
sour, though it works with the beer’s natural flavors of roasted peanuts
and toffee. Nothing in the way of chocolate or coffee, though, which is
fine. It leaves a slightly dry aftertaste, but its easily tolerable.
Either way, it’s a by-the-book porter: no frills; but nothing off,
Drinkability: What separates porters from stouts is their drinkability,
and Anchor Porter is a good example of that. The mouthfeel is soft,
smooth and comfortable. Though slightly thin, consistent carbonation is
noticeable. It’s easy to drink in large swigs or small sips. At 5.6% ABV
it’s got enough body to satisfy and work well as a standalone beverage,
though a bit too heavy to session.