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Elevator Dark Horse Lager - Elevator Brewery & Draught Haus

Not Rated.
Elevator Dark Horse LagerElevator Dark Horse Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

100 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 100
Reviews: 46
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 14.79%
Wants: 4
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Elevator Brewery & Draught Haus visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Euro Dark Lager |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Dogbrick on 12-19-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 100 | Reviews: 46 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Molten copper with pumpkin accents and plenty of uprushing bubbles. The carbonation destination is two fingers of khaki hued foam that is developing large divots in its upper surface as it slowly shrinks. Thick streamers of lace look good too.

This offering is more properly thought of as an American brown lager. Besides, last time I checked, Columbus is not in Europe. Loads of brown bready malt are a pleasant surprise and instantly earn this pony a good score.

Dark Horse Lager is not short on flavor, which is the first major point in its favor. Sweet and bitter balance is right in the fun zone as well. My EB & DH experience is still on the low end, but it's obvious that these guys know what the hell they're doing.

Flavors include toasted brown bread, steely caramel, cocoa powder and strong iced tea. This must be a fresh bottle because the finish is impressively tight/clean, with a healthy nip of hops. Too bad most Euro dark lagers don't taste this good.

There are no complaints about the mouthfeel either. It's easily big enough and has a well-calibrated combination of creaminess and stinging bubbles. Borderline buzzy to start turns into 'keeps your attention' lively by mid-bottle.

Elevator Dark Horse Lager is solid beer from the gate to the backstretch to the finish line. Even though it uses lager yeast, it's really more of an American brown ale than anything else. Forget being a dark horse, this stuff is a favorite.

BuckeyeNation, Jan 02, 2011
Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I give this beer more credit than grouping it with the Euro Dark Lager catagory. The beer makes a very nice little German-style Dunkel.

A dark brown beer lands in front of me and takes on a similar appearace as the Porter that I had just before. Less assertive with the cocoa, nuttiness, and smoke, the Dark horse simplifies things with its lagering. No phenolics or fruitiness, the beer has a good medium toastiness with mild earthy notes from European hops. Big on melanoidins, this beer delivers a rich and creamy mouthfeel that is the showcase for this beer. Sweet with toffee to taste but not sweet feeling on the palate. Nuttiness does rise as the beer warms but never competes with Brown Ales or Porters.

This might be the closest to style beer that the Elevator offers... if compared to good Dunkels.

BEERchitect, May 20, 2009
Photo of mikesgroove
3.78/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am going to be making a concerted effort to dive through the pile of things I need to try in the next couple of weeks. So I started out last night with this one. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, it was consumed on 09/09/2009.
 
Nice pour here, very dark and nearly completely black in color with the exception of some touches of red around the sides and the bottom of the glass. Nice tan head came up and over the top and settled down after a few minutes, dropping a nice amount odd side glass lace in the process. Aroma was light, lots of caramel malts and bready notes dominate. Warming it brings out light notes of grain as well. Smooth taste here with a medium body that was well carbonated. Nice feel across the tongue with very sweet notes that seem to get stronger as it rolls forward. Almost a peat like touch to it as well at times. Very drinkable as the flavor was not over powering and the light ABV made it go down quite nicely.
 
Overall a nice little lager I have to say. Not the biggest fan of the style, but I have to admit this kind of worked for me. I would have no issue at all with trying this one again any day!

mikesgroove, Sep 10, 2009
Photo of Kegatron
3.43/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a deep clear amber, with little over a finger of off-white colored head. Pretty good retention here, staying rich across the surface, with some nice patchy lace back. The aroma is some toasted bread and light notes of toffee and cocoa sweetness. I'm getting a bit of nuttiness too, as well as some spicy floral hops behind the other flavors. This isn't particulary robust in the nose at all.

The taste is tight toasted malt character, as well as some lighter chocolate roast and sweet caramel. The backend is fairly green tasting with citrus and a spicy bitterness. Pretty clean feel on the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a sharp and crisp feel. Overall refreshing presence for the most part.

This was decent. Definitely a little darker tasting than you would expect from a normal lager. I'm not sure how old this bottle was, but it seemed to have a bit of fade on it. I'd like to re-review in the future with a fresher sample.

Kegatron, Aug 24, 2009
Photo of stakem
3.63/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to csmiley for the chance to try this one. Poured into a pint glass this brew appears a clear amber brown color with a finger of quickly dissolving lightly tanned head. Some streaks of lace cling along the glass.

The aroma of this brew is sweet caramelized malt smelling with a bit of buttery notes. Some brown sugary suggestions are also evident along with a minor level of citrus hop scent. A faint chocolate malt suggestion is also evident as the brew warms.

The taste is a sweet mixture upfront tasting of a combination of caramel and chocolate malts with a hint of brown sugar. The sweetness fades to some buttery diacetyl notes, contrasted by a mild herbal hoppy bitterness and an increasing alcohol flavor and warmth brings up the rear.

Medium bodied with modest carbonation. For a brew at just over 5% abv the alcohol is quite pronounced but plays off with a nice subtle fruity flavor that meshes well with the other flavors. It is quite drinkable but a little too sweet for my liking and at times the buttery notes just dont blend well with the other flavors. As the brew warms, it picks up a bit of a light roasted quality about the malt that lingers in the mouth.

stakem, Nov 17, 2010
Photo of chinchill
3.28/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle purchased just a few days ago near brewery.

Pours dark brown, clear, with a modest size head that has good retention and leaves a moderate amount of sticky lacing on the glass. The aroma is less attractive than hoped, with some earthy hop pellets and roasted grains. The flavor is similar in description but notably better and more complex.
Near medium body with medium carbonation.

O: not bad, but not up with, for example, better Czech versions.

chinchill, Aug 09, 2013
Photo of TurdFurgison
4/5  rDev +9.6%

TurdFurgison, Nov 20, 2011
Photo of jrallen34
3.83/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap into a pint glass...Pours a pretty ugly watered down coca-cola with a light white head, ok retention and lacing...The aroma is light, almost dead, I can pull a little roasted malt and toffee...The taste is light but refreshing, light roast, caramel, and tofee. Super easy to drink.

This is good dark lager, try it.

jrallen34, Sep 10, 2010
Photo of Cynic-ale
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%

Cynic-ale, Jul 29, 2013
Photo of bluejacket74
4.1/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle, it's Elevator's first bottled beer (purchased at Blacklick Wine and Spirits). Served in a pint glass, the beer pours dark brown with some red tints too. Head retention is average, lacing is very good. Aroma is toasted malt and nuts, with a bit of chocolate and hops. Taste is similar to the aroma, but the hops come out more in the finish. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's on the creamy side and has average carbonation. Drinkability is pretty good, it's very smooth and very easy to drink with a dry finish. Overall I think it's a good, sessionable dark lager (5.3% ABV). I'd definitely pick this up again, it's a good choice and the first bottled selection Elevator is selling in the Columbus area. Recommended.

bluejacket74, Aug 09, 2008
Photo of Dogbrick
3.9/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draught at the brewpub. Pours a mostly clear dark brown color with a medium and fluffy beige head that has decent retention. Patchy lacing. Aroma of roasted nuts and malt, with hints of hops. Medium, smooth body with a nice roasted character. Notes of malt, chocolate and nuts along with a decent amount of hops. The finish is dry and roasty with a lingering mild hoppiness. Pretty good all around.

Dogbrick, Dec 19, 2007
Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes are from last weekend; this beer serves as my first ever from Elevator.

It's not thick and heavy-looking, but it is dark, edging toward black and stopping at dark brown as some of light peeks through the edges and it shows a little medium brown through the body when held to the light. A creamy tan head sits at just over a finger tall, retains itself well, and leaves a goodly amount of patchy lacing as the beer falls.
The roast has some interesting character on the nose, toasty and lightly charred but with no astringent character of off notes. A bit of raw dark cocoa lays underneath all the way, balanced by a light touch of caramel. Some tangy citrus adds another element to the overall aroma.
There's an underlying grains note that's appropriate for the style while shying away from being the main component. It keeps from getting "steely," as many of the style do. There's a light nuttiness underneath that mingles with the roast and citrus well in the flavor. Again, there here are no off notes to this beer, showing itself to be skillfully brewed. True, the Euro Dark is the weakest style of the dark beers, but this beer is a great take on it.
At first, before I've identified the style, it's from the feel that I definitely notice this isn't an American bruiser of any kind, nor is it in porter or stout territory. It isn't bland, though, and its crispness and moderate carbonation keep it going while it doesn't lack smoothness, so that even as a light to medium-bodied dark lager, it works.

Brenden, Aug 08, 2012
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

4DAloveofSTOUT, Feb 02, 2014
Photo of garymuchow
4.03/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Boy, for a Euro Dark Lager, this had more character than I'd expect - especially in the aroma. Really nice nutty character with a bit of caramel (not sweet) and pushing toast to roast (which will show up again in flavor). Quite a nice aroma for a lager - more robust than most, esp. for a lower alcohol beverage.
Darker color, but holding the deep cooper color and off-white head that settles out quickly. Not bad looking, just not a classic lager.
Flavor not quite as enjoyable as as aroma - but still a rather flavorful lager. My group who shared this guessed that it was fermented at warmer temps based upon the most robust profile of flavors. Many of the same characteristics as the aroma, just more subdued than the former. Especially as it warmed the toast to roast become more of the later than former, but still never at excess or unbalanced.
Closer to an ale feel with a little bigger body and lacking a clear lager cleanliness or crispness.
Still an enjoyable beer with bold flavor unexpected from a lager. Best Euro lager I can remember. :0)
Thanks Chuck.

garymuchow, Apr 04, 2012
Photo of duff247
3.25/5  rDev -11%

duff247, Feb 25, 2013
Photo of ThePorterSorter
3.71/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap at holoday inn

The beer pours a dark, dull amber with a razor thin head that doesn't lace. The nose has a grain sweetness, notes of coffee and roast, but not much else. It drinks with a grain-forward sweetness with a touch of fruit and caramel, but very little bitterness. The mouthfeel presents a lingering grain sweetness, good carbonation, a mild reinforcing roast, touch of chocolate, and a little bitterness. This is a decent beer, but absolutely average.

ThePorterSorter, Jun 18, 2013
Photo of nrbw23
3.45/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- Pours a dark brownish red with a cream colored head and leaves no lacing.

S- Light roasted malts with hints of chocolate and a touch of a smokey smell.

T- Not too bad but nothing also to write home about. Kind of bland and follows the nose.

M- Lighter side of medium and nice carbonation.

D- Easy drinker for sure, not something out would go out and seek but then again I wouldn't turn it down either.

nrbw23, Jan 03, 2010
Photo of JayQue
3.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Not a bad lager. Pours a dark amber color with a cream color head - average retention and good lacing - rings around the glass.

Smell is mild and malty.

Tastes pretty good. Toasted malt and sweet malt with a minimum hop presence other than to cut the sweetness.

Mouthfeel is good. Plenty rich for the style, light and crisp.

Drinkability is good. Slides down easy and has enough flavor to warrant making it a session beer.

JayQue, Oct 30, 2010
Photo of krome
3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

krome, Apr 07, 2014
Photo of Bierguy5
3.48/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle, 5.3% abv. Pours a dark amber color, with a brown tint. White head holds well for a few minutes.

Faint roasted grain in the nose, along with some earthy hops. Not very much at play here.

Darker malt, slightly roasty with a hint of chocolate, without the sweetness. Dry and slightly astringent at the finish, with some earthy bitterness.

Lighter body, but not overly fizzy. Alcohol is a non-factor here. Overall, not terribly interesting but without any major flaws. This would be easy to drink a lot of.

Bierguy5, Mar 16, 2011
Photo of Ryan011235
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass on 7/28/10

Medium brown color; not quite cola but close. It has nice clarity though; no haziness. One & a half fingers of foam has dropped to a thin layer. Minimal lace.

Simple aroma of toasted bread, earthy hops & musty yeast undertones.

Subtle earthy hop notes hit upfront & give way to a full malt profile. Sporting only a vague sweetness, there are notes of toasted dark bread, a hint of biscuit & even some dark sugars. No frills, but it tastes pretty good.

Leaning towards full bodied. Carbonation seems right around where it should be; not overly fussy. Residuals of toasted malt with a lingering bitterness.

Not too shabby. Dark Horse is straightforward & plays it safe. Certainly nothing wrong with that. Still, with other quality beers available locally (from Elevator & others), this won't end up in any sort of regular rotation.

Ryan011235, Jul 30, 2010
Photo of BigBry
3.75/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of the seasonal beers on tap at the brewpub, on my last trip to Columbus. $5.00 for a 16oz pint.
Clear dark brown, with a slightly off white head that has alright retention, minimal lacing. Mild aroma of toasted malt and some fruitiness. Flavor of malt, slight chocolate and a bit nutty. Balanced off with some floral hoppiness. Dry and clean finish. Decent overall, nice example.

BigBry, Mar 22, 2008
Photo of jgunther71
3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

jgunther71, Apr 04, 2014
Photo of JimmyFlatRock
3.75/5  rDev +2.7%

JimmyFlatRock, Mar 30, 2013
Photo of Spider889
4.2/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had for the first time tonight at Claddagh of all places. I always saw "lager" on the label and just assumed I wouldn't like it.

Came dark. Not exactly black, more the color of weak watery coffee - dark brown and blackish in the center. No head but left minimal lace.

Smelled decent. Malty, slightly bready and lightly toasted.

Taste was great! Reminded me of how much diversity you can still find in a lager, and also steamed up some visions of homebrewing a lager this winter possibly. Nice and robust for the style, dark and roasty, with some spicy/earthy hops on the finish.

Medium bodied for a lager. slightly dry but overall a very smooth and easy drinking beer. I am slowly becoming sold that I need to be paying more attention to Elevator, and next time I see this in stores I'll probably come home with some.

Spider889, Oct 20, 2010
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Elevator Dark Horse Lager from Elevator Brewery & Draught Haus
83 out of 100 based on 100 ratings.