We have developed and built a small porous-plug burner based on the original McKenna burner design. The new burner generates a laminar premixed flat flame for use in studies of combustion chemistry and soot formation. The size is particularly relevant for space-constrained, synchrotron-based X-ray diagnostics. In this paper, we present details of the design, construction, operation, and supporting infrastructure for this burner, including engineering attributes that enable its small size. We also present data for charactering the flames produced by this burner. These data include temperature profiles for three premixed sooting ethylene/air flames (equivalence ratios of 1.5, 1.8, and 2.1); temperatures were recorded using direct one-dimensional coherent Raman imaging. We include calculated temperature profiles, and, for one of these ethylene/air flames, we show the carbon and hydrogen content of heavy hydrocarbon species measured using an aerosol mass spectrometer coupled with vacuum ultraviolet photoionization (VUV-AMS) and soot-volume-fraction measurements obtained using laser-induced incandescence. In addition, we provide calculated mole-fraction profiles of selected gas-phase species and characteristic profiles for seven mass peaks from AMS measurements. Using these experimental and calculated results, we discuss the differences between standard McKenna burners and the new miniature porous-plug burner introduced here.