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Trader Jose's Dark Lager - Trader Joe's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Trader Jose's Dark LagerTrader Jose's Dark Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

124 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 124
Reviews: 73
rAvg: 3.28
pDev: 12.8%
Wants: 2
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Trader Joe's Brewing Company
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Lager |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-06-2008)
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Ratings: 124 | Reviews: 73 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Caskaway


3.5/5  rDev +6.7%

07-13-2012 01:21:26 | More by Caskaway
Photo of beertunes


2.68/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into 9oz Pilsener glass. Poured a clean, clear medium brown color, with 3/4 inch of off-white head that moderate retention and lacing.

The aroma was mostly neutral, some light grains and just a gentle hint of hops were all that showed up. The flavors were the same, bland almost to the point of flavorlessness.

The body was pretty typical, medium and clean, with good carbonation. Drinkability was OK, not special, not terrible. Overall, just kind of bland, Meh-ish brew. At $6 a sixer you could grab one. Or not. Whatever.

Serving type: bottle

07-06-2012 19:35:21 | More by beertunes
Photo of dmorgan310


3/5  rDev -8.5%

07-06-2012 18:58:15 | More by dmorgan310
Photo of Beerchaeology

New York

2.5/5  rDev -23.8%

06-03-2012 13:40:33 | More by Beerchaeology
Photo of kylemckinnis


2.75/5  rDev -16.2%

06-03-2012 00:32:54 | More by kylemckinnis
Photo of rjpetrizzo

3.25/5  rDev -0.9%

04-19-2012 04:00:52 | More by rjpetrizzo
Photo of Murrhey


1.8/5  rDev -45.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Shared out of a 12oz bottle poured in pint glasses. Reviewed from notes.

A- Red-brown with a tan head.

S- Hoppy and medium bodied malts. Not very potent.

T- Dark malts but not complex at all. Not very good.

M- Medium bodied, foamy feel. Not great.

O- Ok for a cheap beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2012 04:11:43 | More by Murrhey
Photo of kylehay2004


3.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

single finger head with little retention but nice lacing on a straight amber clear body. aroma is very sweet, mostly malt and grain with sweet corn. flavor is mostly malt but it is a little flat. smooth, simple and drinkable but not very memorable. medium body and light to moderate carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2012 00:54:47 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of OldTime


3/5  rDev -8.5%

03-08-2012 07:25:09 | More by OldTime
Photo of carrollmel7

North Carolina

2.5/5  rDev -23.8%

03-06-2012 20:35:00 | More by carrollmel7
Photo of UCLABrewN84


3.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear dark crimson brown with a 2 inch foamy tan head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Thin rings of lace form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark malt and some nutty and slight metallic aromas. Taste is of dark malt and some nutty flavors. A slight metallic flavor shows up on the aftertaste but it's not too strong. This beer has a higher level of carbonation with a very crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer taste wise but nothing all that exciting.

Serving type: bottle

02-26-2012 06:48:19 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of rodney45

New York

3.05/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Zinnwaldite brown with a lingering tan, or ivory head that lasts quite a while.

S: Big notes of cereal grains, malt and brown rice.

T: First profile is of roasted barley, oats and walnut. Secondary notes of light hop and bitterness. Non dry aftertaste.

M: medium body with light carbonation.

O: This isnt bad actually. It has a porter or brown ale feel, with a ale like mouthfeel. I wouldnt go as far as to say this is abover average, but i'd recommend.

Serving type: bottle

02-16-2012 13:03:51 | More by rodney45
Photo of dugly2ugly


3/5  rDev -8.5%

02-12-2012 01:16:13 | More by dugly2ugly
Photo of GossageBrewery


2.63/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured this American Amber ale from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Poured a hazy light brown color, produced a creamy off white head, thick, good retention, leaves a nice amount of lacing on the glass. The aroma consists of subtle amounts of roasted grain and caramel. The taste is light in body, thin, watery. Toasted grain, caramel come through. Easy to drink- Overall boring beer- Disappointed with the entire trader jose line. On to the next beer! Prost!

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2012 00:50:56 | More by GossageBrewery
Photo of kojevergas


2.68/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

11.2 fl oz (330 ml) brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Weizen glass in low altitude Orange, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are average.

A: Pours a one finger head of decent cream, nice thickness, and above average retention. The colour is a dark amber-copper.

Sm: Malts and caramel. A mild strength aroma.

T: Very simple: caramel, malts, and light cream. It's okay, but I need more from a beer. Balanced but boring and bland.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Not too thick or too thin.

Dr: Drinkable but boring. I wouldn't have it again. It's alright, but largely forgettable.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2012 06:42:26 | More by kojevergas
Photo of kepp


3/5  rDev -8.5%

01-02-2012 07:46:41 | More by kepp
Photo of Halcyondays


3.5/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours brown with a light off-white head, light lace, solid head retention.

S: Toasty malt, some brown sugar, nice smell.

T: Sweet dark bready malt. Really the only flavour, but it's good. Very light hop component.

M: Medium-bodied, crisp biting carbonation, smooth, easy drinking.

O: A very good beer for the price. Nice flavour, no complexity, but an enjoyable effort.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2011 05:51:02 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

3.6/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

amber with the slightest of orange tint to it. A small maybe one inch high head of white foam graced the top

light and surprisingly hoppy with a nice bit of grain pushed up from the bottom. The blend was nice and light and had a good bright aroma. Some light fruit in the back as well.a good amount of floral hops sitting in the finish. The initial flavor I picked up was that of a nice cereal grain with a touch of a light grass mixed in. This rolled into a nice light fruit with a touch of a pine like finish to it. It was a nice bitter finish and a surprisingly good hop profile.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2011 06:05:29 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of jneiswender


3.5/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this as part of my wife's mixpack she made up for me. Poured into a pint glass and served cool.

Clear and dark brown color and an off white head. Smell reminds me of some chocolate and light coffee. Nequick like. LIght hop presence as the malt dominates with chocolate drink mix like flavor. The mouth feel is medium and well carbonated. I might drink this again.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2011 14:52:52 | More by jneiswender
Photo of teyuders


4/5  rDev +22%

11-16-2011 02:52:43 | More by teyuders
Photo of notchucknorris


3.38/5  rDev +3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown/amber in color with a wispy tan head. Not much retention at all.

S: Sweet malts, day old coffee grounds and a slight nuttiness.

T: It's definitely nothing mind-blowing, but it's not altogether awful either. Taste is cereal grains, sweet malts, caramel and hazelnut with a hint of marzipan as well.

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2011 04:48:26 | More by notchucknorris
Photo of kneeland

North Carolina

3.88/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was an American Amber? Could have fooled me. It pours dark, almost coffee black. Maybe a hint of red if you hold it up to the sun. I really liked the color, especially since it didn't taste as heavy or as dark as it looked. You can taste the malt, a little sweetness. It's a very bold lager.

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2011 15:15:28 | More by kneeland
Photo of bluejacket74


3.55/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle, best before 06/17/11. So it's about a month after that, no big deal. The single bottle was only a buck from Trader Joe's so I don't feel bad about buying it. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a clear brown/copper color with about an inch off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both decent enough. Aroma is bready and caramel malt, nuts and some toffee. The taste is the same as the aroma, it tastes like bready and caramel malt, nuts and toffee. Finish is mostly sweet with some bitterness noticable too. Even after its best before date it's still a pretty decent brew. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit slick and has moderate/high carbonation. It's also smooth and easy to drink. For the price it's not a bad beer, it's better than I expected it to be. I can't complain for $1 a bottle. I'd buy it again at that price!

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2011 23:42:15 | More by bluejacket74
Photo of Reidrover


3.5/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

6 pack bottles from Trader Joes in S.Salem. $5.49 Dark amber/brown beer with a really good looking tight ,thick head..light tan in colour. Simple aroma..bready,some caramel..a little nutty. Taste again pretty simple..slightly caramel/toffee, some niuttiness..walnuts maybe small amount of hop in the end. Ok mouthfeel..not to bad for style..nice slightly bitter after taste. I enjoyed this..a nice simple dark lager

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2011 02:07:17 | More by Reidrover
Photo of DarthKostrizer


3.45/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Look: Dark brownish red almost rootbeer color with 1 inch white foamy head and decent retention

Smell: Roasted malt coffee and tobacco

Taste: Almost the damn same as the nose. Lots of coffee tobacco and leather notes

Mouthfeel: Medium body with medium level of carbonation

Overall: I'm gonna be totally honest right now and say this might be the best .90 cents I have ever spent but it the beer cost $1.99 I would not buy it

Serving type: bottle

06-26-2011 03:58:49 | More by DarthKostrizer
Trader Jose's Dark Lager from Trader Joe's Brewing Company
76 out of 100 based on 124 ratings.