While the true nature of where and when the term…
A porter beer is a dark, hoppy British beer whose name is aligned with extra porters, and stouts and porter stouts — it’s all down a rabbit-hole of definitions and lineage from there.
Suffice to say, therefore, that porter was said to be a favourite of British transport workers of several hundred years ago: hence, at least mythically, the name “porter.” It mad sense: these were good beers for providing sustenance for a physical job as a porter (the word comes from the Latin “to carry”). Porter was once as high as seven percent alcohol — perhaps that is another reason why it was a favourite.
This is folksy myth, however, and good fun too because there is also an hypothesis that the Dutch were drinking a “poorter” beer as early as the 1300s, and it is entirely possible that in shipping transactions at various ports between England and the Netherlands this could be the derivation of the name of the beer we now call porter. It’s food (and delicious drink) for thought.
Modern porters use malted barley and are highly aged beers — often more than a year. They are great for cooking with as well as sipping.
In Waterloo, Innocente Brewing Co. brews a Charcoal Porter — which won Gold at the Canadian Brewing Awards and Silver at the Ontario Brewing Awards in 2015. It has a 5.1 percent ABV count, along with a deep, dark colour and rich flavour.[ Image: Innocente Brewing Co. ]
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