Well, interesting if nothing else. Pour is good looking. Nice Porter color, dark red/brown and a really rather impressive head (if somewhat airy) and lacing – looks good.
Smell is really nice too. Creamy alcohol sweetness and some dark treacle.
As far as the taste goes I was impressed with the way it literally mimicked what it claimed on the label – DEFINITE “licorice” notes, “assertive hop finish” and “medium bodied” so at least it has that going for it. However, for me the licorice was a little too much, so the Porter became more like a dry stout without the creaminess of a Porter. I suppose that Jim Koch is saying that this is what a Porter once was, but for me it’s disappointing in the context of what I want from a Porter now. Even putting that stylistic issue aside for a moment, I simply didn’t care much for the taste, it’s quite odd, a little bit “plastic”. Glad I tried it though.