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The Beer Circle » Beer, Budget, Great Lakes Brewing Co. » Budget: Great Lakes Brewing Company – Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

Budget: Great Lakes Brewing Company – Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

In the Budget column, I strive to write about beers that taste better than they cost.  Tonight’s entry fits squarely in that territory – an excellent exemplar of a style, that won’t even come close to breaking the bank. In this post, I take a look at the Great Lakes Brewing Company‘s Edmund Fitzgerald Porter.

Great Lakes, based out of Cleveland, Ohio, is “committed to crafting fresh, flavorful, high-quality beer and food for the enjoyment of our customers.”  The Beer Circle crew hasn’t yet made it to this regional brewery, but were able to attend a release for Great Lakes products in the Northern Virginia area.  Great Lakes products tend to be very solid examples of their styles, at prices that easily meet our Budget criteria.

Will this beer fare better than the boat of its namesake?  Find out below.

Great Lakes Brewing Company – Edmund Fitzgerald Porter
The beer pours a very dark brown with roughly an inch of medium-brown head. A small amount of similarly-colored lacing appears as the beer is drank. While the bottle isn't much to look at, (none of Great Lakes' are) that's not why we drink this. The appearance suits this beer well.
The aroma smells most strongly of dark-roasted barley, a bit of chocolate, and a lingering coffee aroma that sticks to the palate. The nose is robust and full-bodied, but never overpowering.
Taste here is what makes this beer really excellent. A delicious blend of perfectly-roasted barley, chocolate, and coffee plays on the tongue to finish lightly (more on that later), with a delightful creaminess on the backend. Alcohol never overtly shows up, and the flavor never gets to be overpowering. Truly great.
Mouthfeel represents yet another excellent point of this beer. The beer finishes light on the tongue, enabling this one to go down smooth. Flavors this bold can sometimes lead to a beer that's overpowering in mouthfeel or drinkability, and the Edmund Fitzgerald never strays down that path. Finishes dry, not too sweet.
At just $8 or $9 in Northern Virginia for a six-pack of this, this beer sits firmly within 'Budget' territory, and is probably one of the best American Porters you can get for the money if it's available in your area. This is one I try to keep on hand for when I'm feeling something dark and bold but not overpowering - always worth having around.
This beer, initially bold and imposing, much like the ship of its namesake, ultimately fares excellently, proving itself as one of the best American Porters I've found for the money. Regardless, you can't hope for BA/RB scores much higher. Successfully navigating pitfalls of excessive heft or sweetness, this Edmund Fitzgerald will always get you home.
Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

Beer Stats
Style: American Porter
Serving: Bottle
Size: 12 oz
ABV: 5.80%
BA Score: 95
RB Score: 99

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Written by Garrett Miller

Garrett brings a somewhat different perspective on beer to the table. While always thrilled to try any new, exotic brew that finds itself his way, Garrett finds that he's often quite satisfied with reliable, common craft choices. As such, Garrett is a fan of trying and reviewing these (admittedly less expensive) beers, and using them to introduce the exciting, flavorful world of craft beer to those not-yet-acquainted. Garrett’s favorite styles are IPAs and bourbon stouts, but won’t turn his nose up at anything. Find Garrett Miller on Google Plus

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