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Spaten Dunkel - Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu

Spaten DunkelSpaten Dunkel

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

468 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 468
Reviews: 190
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 12.81%

Brewed by:
Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu visit their website

Style | ABV
Munich Dunkel Lager |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-05-2009)
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Ratings: 468 | Reviews: 190 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of DerekP


3.73/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brown with reddish hues in the appearance of this beer. Not opaque, but dark enough to keep you from really checking out what's going on in the glass (the most you'll see is a reddish brown wall with the shadow of your fingers holding the glass). A frothy nougat head sits quietly up top. Carbonation bubbles rising. Appearance: 4/5

Caramel in the nose. Chocolate fudge, raisins, figs, crust of brown bread. An underlying herbal hops aroma rises up as it warms. Aroma: 4/5

Dark and caramel malts send suggestions of cocoa nibs and caramel to the taste buds. Hops come through with a gentle and balancing bitterness. Cold coffee. Dark chocolate bar flavor drys and lingers on the tongue. Taste: 3.5/5

A touch watery at times, but a quaffable dunkel, for certain. Medium to full bodied; I really can't decide. Feel: 3.5/5

Overall I give this brew a 4 out of 5. The fragrance is really enjoyable and appealing as it is malty and robust. The taste is complex, rich, sweet and dry. Though I said it was a touch watery, that characteristic improves its drinkability. 5.2% ABV on the bottle, lower than what I've read elsewhere, and that's a good thing.

Serving type: bottle

07-29-2012 19:43:55 | More by DerekP
Photo of tdm168

North Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - ruby amber with a thick half inch of thick, fizzy, brownish, off white head that has decent retention

S - must, grains, caramel

T - caramel, very faint chocolate, plum, raisin, figs

M - medium bodied, smooth, well carbonated

This is a decent dunkel. It has decent flavor and solid drinkability. It's a bit sweet and fruity but overall pretty good.

Serving type: bottle

06-28-2012 23:47:23 | More by tdm168
Photo of JuicesFlowing


3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass. The beer is a deep ruby brown color. An off white head dissipates quickly to a thin film. Little or no lacing is present. The beer smells slightly bready, malty, and with faint caramel notes. The taste mimics the aroma. A nice sweet malt note up front. There's breadiness in here somewhat. The mouthfeel is fairly light to medium bodied.

Overall, a pretty average dunkel, but not bad at all. Very sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2012 17:39:38 | More by JuicesFlowing
Photo of OWSLEY069


2.45/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a clean deep amber color with a light tan head. In the aroma, well, standard European lager like smells. In the taste, a small roast inside of a standard European lager. A smooth and medium to lighter bodied mouthfeel, with a dry lager like grain in the aftertaste. Basically, a standard European lager with a note of like caramel like roast.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2012 19:15:53 | More by OWSLEY069
Photo of joecalderoni


3.9/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: pour a very nice dark amber color wilth a nice medium white head on it!

S: caramell, toffee aroma! A little hint of nice roastiness in the back of nose! Slight diacetyl aroma!

T: very sweet taste, super malty beer! Caramel and toffee taste! Little roastiness followes by a bit of diacetyl!

M: medium body with medium carbonation! Very chewy!

O: not the best dunkel you can drink! I think anyone can brew a better example! Its a cery drinkable beer,good for a nice session dunkel!

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2012 20:27:46 | More by joecalderoni
Photo of secondtooth


3.85/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice caramel amber in color, with a large, off-white head and solid spoke-style lacing.

Nose is malty -- I get caramel, toffee, and a hint of fruitiness. Definitely sweet.

Taste is similar, sweet with toffee tones and some fruit coming in. Body is light, and this is an easy-drinking and enjoyable dunkel.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2012 22:27:24 | More by secondtooth
Photo of B967ierhunter177


3.35/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a clear, brilliant rust color with 1 finger head and no lace.It becomes whiskey colored as it warms. It's aroma has hints of bread crust and root beer. The flavor leads off with root beer with bread crust, spice, and faint floral notes. The mouthfeel is light-medium and there's a slight warmth as the beer warms. Spaten Dunkel is a good brew, recommended!

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2012 01:00:27 | More by B967ierhunter177
Photo of barczar


3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear deep caramel brown with a solid one finger khaki head that lingers.

Aroma is bready, sweet, toasted caramel malt, with light herbal hop adding complexity. Toffee finishes the profile.

Toasted malts form the backbone of this brew, providing a nutty finish. Flavors of caramel, bread crust, and a hint of toffee emerge. A bit of diacetyl is present, but not unwelcome. This bottle exhibits a bit of skunky character.

Body is moderately heavy, with moderate carbonation.

Overall, definitely a malt dominated beer. The herbal hops prevent it from being overly sweet. Very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2012 05:15:29 | More by barczar
Photo of UCLABrewN84


3.55/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear orange-brown with a 1 inch foamy tan head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Thin foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasty malt, caramel, and some slight metallic aromas. Taste is of malt, caramel, and a fruity flavor on the finish. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but I think it tastes better than it smells.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2012 01:39:33 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of ChrisPratz


3.98/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Spaten Dunkel, blast from the past of my college days. Interesting to review this beer on taste and not chug a bunch to get messed up for the night!

A: Nice deep brown hue, totally transparent. Less then a fingers worth of head, gives way to very minimal lacing around the edge with little clouds of lace floating around. Remember this having more head in previous outings.

S: Nice roasted malt, light hints of caramel and some toasted grains. Very nice mix of roast and sweetness.

T: Wheat and some maltyness, not overpowering at all. Tastes of some bready/biscuity/yeast-like goodness. Caramel sweetness thru most of the taste, with molasses coming thru at the end. Stays for nice all the way thru with an ever so slight touch of bitterness at the very end.

M: Lightly carbonated, very nice feel.

O: Very good brew, they've done well with the flavoring. Everything flows well together and finishes with a crispness leaving you ready for another. Def a great brew while watching the game with some friends.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2012 01:02:15 | More by ChrisPratz
Photo of VncentLIFE

North Carolina

3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pour is a german Dunkel. The smell is skunked, but lets see what I can do to get past the skunk ass. Smell is irrelevant in this review. Clamped the nose closed and plowed through it. Its got those Dunkel flavors that I love, but its dry. Almost like super sugary caramel. Its a very sweet, in spite of the skunk from the damn green bottle.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2012 23:12:21 | More by VncentLIFE
Photo of samie85


3.25/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, brown copper color with a two and a finger head.

Herbal hops with grainy Munich malt notes.

Malty with a hint of roast and herbal hops on the finish.

Light side of medium bodied with moderate carbonation a light dryness on the finish.

Very drinkable and I wouldn't mind having a few more of these right now.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2012 03:19:20 | More by samie85
Photo of Drinkerofales


3.93/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours a dark coppery brown with gold highlights. The huge light tan head leaves some moderate lacing.

Smell is wheat with roasted malts and a hint of dark fruit. Some earthiness joins as it warms.

Taste is wheat and malt in balance with a hint of fruitiness as it warms.

Feels super smooth and rich, with that wheaty tang on the finish.

I have always liked Spaten beers, and I like this one. Great texture on this beer makes it easy to drink.


Serving type: bottle

02-18-2012 10:30:05 | More by Drinkerofales
Photo of Samp01

New Jersey

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

Pours a reddish brown with a medium beige head. Aroma and Taste of toasted caramel malt, barley, some yeast and grassy notes with some hops bitterness. Palate is a light to medium body with moderate carbonation. Finish is sweet toasted caramel malt, barley, yeast with some bitter hops ending for balance. Nothing really outstanding, but overall a pretty good easy drinking dunkel, an average brew

Serving type: bottle

02-09-2012 18:32:12 | More by Samp01
Photo of bubseymour


3.93/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - dark brown with minimal white head

Smell - Nice malty caramel smell

Taste - Nice for the style. Good flavorings of honey, caramel and a crisp finish.

Mouthfeel - light

Overall - I good beer for this style. A little light on flavor but still tasty, light and easy to drink. Will be glad to sample more.

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2012 18:45:10 | More by bubseymour
Photo of boilermakerbrew


3.78/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Surprisingly, being from a very German Catholic region of Indiana, my first Dunkel.

A- Pours a medium brown, semi-translucent hue. About a quarter inch frothy head that doesn't hang around long. Acceptable lacing.

S- Smells familiarly like a Czech or German pilsener. Mainly grassy notes with light malts mixed it. Slight skunky aroma. Maybe a hint of underlying caramel malt.

T- Essentially what I would call a dark Czech or German pilsener. Very light up front with lots of grassy-grain notes. Little to no bitterness from hops, but underlying sweetness. A little malty towards the end, but not much at all.

M- Also drinks like a pils. Very carbonated, but very drinkable. Weight on the palate is slightly heavier than your standard full-body pilsener.

Overall, not a great, but not a terrible experience for my first time with a dunkel. An interesting mix of malt and light bodied drinkability that makes it obvious why this is a favorite of Fruedenfest every July near my hometown in Oldenburg, Indiana.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2012 23:29:50 | More by boilermakerbrew
Photo of TaySuth


3.53/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Small, half finger head with a good retention. Minimal lacing. Chocolate brown in color.

Smell: Nice smell with some hops and grains. Aroma has a nice balance.

Taste: Well balanced taste. Nice blend of grains and some hops with hints of coffee. Very enjoyable.

Mouthfeel: Very nice amount of carbonation. Good body.

Overall: An enjoyable beer but not spectacular.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2012 05:22:54 | More by TaySuth
Photo of StonedTrippin


2.75/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

not my favorite here. pours dark brown and flat like the left over morning coffee down the drain with the dinner dishes. smells malty and astringent. taste is really funny, german malts yes, but in weird proportion. the dark roast thing doesnt seem to work here, and the mouthfeel is rough with so little carbonation and a full body. not sure if i got a bad bottle, i know a lot of these green glass imports can be mishandled, but i really didnt care for this brew and i am a lover of dunkels

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2011 04:28:28 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of grover37

District of Columbia

3.03/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Picked up a sixer at Rodman's for $8. Poured into a pilsner glass at 47 degrees. Warmed up a bit before drinking.

Appearance (4): Clear, dark brown or mahogany with orange highlights. Two fingers of light cream, thick head reduces to a quarter inch layer.

Aroma (3.5): Very grainy with notes of cereal and caramel. More sweet smelling than anything.

Taste (2.5): Watery up front with a touch of toasty biscuit and grain. Caramel comes through immediately after that and intensifies throughout. A touch sweet through the middle and especially the finish. A bit of spicy pine in the finish too.

Mouthfeel (4): Thin and effervescent. Very watery throughout, even in the slightly sticky finish of caramel semi-sweetness. Light bodied and high carbonation.

Overall (3): Pretty average, even for a generally unremarkable style. Light and drinkable but not much stands out except for the cereal graininess and a light caramel. Very clean if watery and thin.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2011 01:52:06 | More by grover37
Photo of jifigz


3.7/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a pint.

A: The beer pours a nice dark yet transparent brown. The head disappeared quickly and the head died and disappeared extremely fast.

S: The beer smells of sweet malts. The aroma reminds me of molasses and a very slight spicy hint.

T: The taste mirrors the aroma almost exact. It is extremely sweet and just a little spicy on the tongue. The sugary smell is very much like molasses.

MF: The MF is very clean and leaves your mouth dry. The carbonation is very effervescent.

O: This is a tasty beer. It is a rich and clean tasting dunkel and very sweet and palatable. I drink a lot more ales than lagers and a good lager every now and then really hits the spot.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2011 22:11:00 | More by jifigz
Photo of Brent


3.5/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Funny how you can realize you never reviewed what is a fairly common beer. Straight down the middle on the German dark lager style here. Roasted malt flavor is forefront, with a bit of astringency thinning toward the end. Finish is firm, with a parting hops note. I can't imagine we ever get this beer anything approaching fresh, and, particularly for a lager style, it would be interesting to try this in its prime.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2011 15:16:16 | More by Brent
Photo of TMoney2591


3.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Chicago Bears shaker pint glass.

Gotta love free bottles, right? Thanks, Mike! I'm always down for samples. This one pours a clear sunset ruby topped by a a finger of dusty tan foam. The nose comprises flaky biscuits, light hot cinnamon, light caramel, and maybe a blade of grass or two. The taste holds notes of caramel, light biscuit, and what seems like a pinch of nutmeg. It's all pretty straightforward and ends up pretty tasty. The body is a rather light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a mostly fluid feel. Overall, a nice dark lager, very drinkable, if a bit on the dull side.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2011 04:14:38 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of OutFox

New York

3.88/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle. Found it left over in a fride from an Oktoberfest sort of party I atteneded.

A - Good dark sort of brown color. Poured into a regular pint glass. Thin sort of head.

S - Caramel malt in the nose. And a lot of it. Underlying sweetness. Smells pleasant.

T - Woah. Raisins. I mean for some reason they are so dominate in the flavor profile and I really like it. Caramel and roasted malty flavor/sweetness is there as well but the raisin flavor for me dominates and is so good.

M - Its sort of heavy but not overly so. Good dunkel mouth feel.

O - Good dunkel from Spaten Haus. I liked it. Really got a lot of raisin, but that might just be me. Enjoyed it.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2011 04:41:13 | More by OutFox
Photo of fx20736

New York

3.63/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a Mug.

Burnt Umber Amber with a thin offwhite head.

Aroma of toasted malt and a whiff of fragrant floral hops.

mouthfeel: solid, decent.

taste: toasted caramel malt with a light gentle sting of Noble Hops.

Notes: pretty simple stuff. Easy to drink but lacking in complexity. The taste feels a little hollow in the middle. A little more toasted caramel than Spaten's Oktoberfest but seemingly not as well made. Will continue to look for a better Dunkel.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2011 00:15:02 | More by fx20736
Photo of DoktorZee

Alberta (Canada)

3.75/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a schooner. No obvious best before date on the bottle.

A - deep brown, clear with a one finger tan head that disappears after a couple minutes with just a hint of lacing.

S - big caramel malty nose on this one; mixed in with a bit of bread as well

T - initial hops bitterness is subdued and quickly overtaken by the big caramel malt profile. This never quite gets sweet like a Maibock and instead finishes with a combination of mild bitterness and caramel malt. Some spiciness at the end as well.

M - medium bodied with moderate carbonation; definitely heavier than a lager

D - goes down very easy

Hard to pick a final review on this one: it's got some flashes of brilliance, but in the end may be just a touch too subdued to be exceptional. I certainly don't regret drinking it as it was solid, but it wasn't truly outstanding.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2011 01:39:54 | More by DoktorZee
Spaten Dunkel from Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu
83 out of 100 based on 468 ratings.