Dismiss Notice
Hello, is it beer you're looking for?

Learn more about beer. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for as low as 68% off the single issue price.

Subscribe now →

Dark Horse Fore Smoked Stout - Dark Horse Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dark Horse Fore Smoked StoutDark Horse Fore Smoked Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

435 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 435
Hads: 1,075
Avg: 3.92
pDev: 14.8%
Wants: 65
Gots: 131 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Smoked Beer |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Mitchster on 12-13-2002

Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 435 | Hads: 1,075
Photo of tariq1
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I thoroughly enjoyed this one. Got a four pack recently and I didn't want it to end. Tastes like a good old fashioned Midwest campout in the forest. Good smokey flavor, but not overpowering the classic malty stout flavors that you'd hope for. It's deep though not very heavy and not too complex. There were a few gaps in the flavor and it wasn't the freshest feeling bottle which keeps it out of the upper echelons of my beer selection, but I would certainly buy it again. I'd also love to try this one on tap one day.

 518 characters

Photo of do_ob
3.81/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle into a snifter. Pitch black in appearance with an initial 1/2 finger of mocha-colored foam atop. This quickly dissolved down into a thin skirting 'round the upper edge. A small amount of yeast resides in the bottom of the glass. Modest aroma, but very pleasant; roasted malt, bitter chocolate, coffee, and spice. There's a bit of a molasses and burnt wood character to the aroma once the beer warms up a little. Medium weight, and somewhat watery in feel. Smoked & roasted malt and spice up front with a rapidy increasing bitterness, which I attributed to the peat malt and chocolate. While there is a decent amount of "smokiness", this beer is much more coffee-forward than I would have imagined. Not a bad thing, by the way. Finishes slightly abrasive and watery and leaves behind charred wood and coffee on the aftertaste.

Overall, not bad at all. I didn't realize this was a seasonal release when I bought it. I just saw a new DH beer I hadn't had, so I grabbed a 4 pack. I can't speak for this beer fresh, but with a few months of age on it, it's pretty tasty. Great flavors, loads of bittering coffee and chocolate, and those smoked malts. A bit thin, but hey. I'd probably buy it again.

 1,208 characters

Photo of andrewjraab
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a pitch black with motor oil like viscosity with a mocha brown head. Head fades fast and not much stick. Coffee and caramel notes make this an enticing brew - nice smell to this. Bitter chocolate, vanilla, smoke, and caramel make this a really smooth and nice stout. Finishes dry and bitter on the palate, but overall a really nice creamy mouth feel. Overall, this is a top notch smoked stout and I will def try again.

 429 characters

Photo of Cheeseboo
4.4/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A very solid entry in the stout department. I like it a lot. There are a ton of things happening with the taste. Very smoky flavor. I didn't think I would like this at first because I've had some stouts with overpowering "smokiness", but this was very nice.

 261 characters

Photo of DabblinWiscCraft
4.01/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found a bottle as part of a build-your-own-sixer at my local grocer. No bottled on date and a considerable buildup of yeast in the bottle has me a bit worried. Poured at cellar temperature into my Lakefront pint glass.

L: Pours a deep coffee black with about a quarter-inch of brown head that dissipates fairly quickly to a ring that leaves minimal lacing on the glass.

S: There are roasted and sweeter caramel malt notes in the nose. There is a definite soy sauce/sweet teriyaki thing happening, as well. There are more subtle notes of coffee and black licorice present.

T: Roasted malts are quite assertive at the front, with a hint of that black licorice from the nose. There are sweeter caramel malts playing around the edges. The middle provides more of that savory quality hinted at by the bouquet, though there hardly anything resembling soy sauce or teriyaki in the flavor: it translates to greater heartiness for the malts. The back end exhibits a somewhat subdued coffee flavor, along with a hint of sweet vanilla. There finish is a somewhat smoky roasted malt.

F: On the watery side of medium-bodied, though I certainly wouldn't characterize it as watered-down. My one beef with the feel is that it drinks a little too flat. It is smooth, with a slightly grainy finish.

O: I really enjoyed this brew: it's a stout that delivers a nice balance of flavors while still offering up some complexity. I'd be curious to see how this one tastes fresh.

 1,459 characters

Photo of JayQue
3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Not bad as a stout. A bit weak in the smoked department. Pours a dense dark brown color with a dark brown head. No light gets through on the glass. Hedretention is lessthan average. Minimal lacing. Aroma is fairly pronounced, mostly roasted malt and some coffee. the smoked aspect only comes out in the taste. The flavor is pretty much the same as the aroma. Rich malty flavor, mostly roasted malt. The smoke aspect comes out in the flavor but it is fairly mild. Still pleasant though. If you are loking for Alaska Smoked Porter, this ain't it!!! Mouthfeel is rich and smooth. The smoke adds a nice aspect. A pretty decent stout with a little smokiness for interest.

 672 characters

Photo of drunkenmess
4.27/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

First time trying Dark Horse beer. I kno right, I live in Michigan...
Pours a very dark, dark brown almost black with a dark brown head That almost disappears while drinking. Very light lacing which also does the same. Smells of smokey burnt chocolate alcohol. Tastes basically how it smells with a lingering smokey aftet taste in your mouth. But actually very light compared to the porters and stouts I'm used to. Overall, well done! Me likey... Prosit & Cheers!!!

 467 characters

Photo of Beer-A-Lot
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A disappointment. Fully expected to love this beer. First, I love Dark Horse and have been very impressed with every beer I've had, and not just Pt5. Second, I love all the aspects of this style. But this beer is thin, lacking in smokiness, and needs more sweetness to keep it from tasting flat. Wish I loved it, but I'll stick to their many other great beers.

 365 characters

Photo of alarmclock314
4.16/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours black with a small-sized brown head. Strong roasted malt and smoke smell, but somewhat more subdued in taste. Lots of malt and char. Hefty body with low-medium carnation. Overall, this is a great Smoked Beer. Kind of reminded me of Grande Noirceur.

 256 characters

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Oh man. Bubble bath time. I'm not a homo but I really needed one tonight. Nothing like a new stout to go along with it, no?

Appearance : Pours a tarry black color... pitch, motor oil, coal...obsidian. It's a black hole in a glass, there's no way light is coming through on the other side. They should have called this the 'black hole of death'. The 3 finger head actually pours slightly red, like an angry irish fire brick red. It settles down into a peanut butter brown with tinges of red. It has receded to 1/2 a finger at this point.

Aroma : Salted Caramel Macchiato. Spot on. It has the roasted coffee with rich caramel and cream notes, and a toffee-like sweetness, and a faint smoked aroma. It's beautiful. The bouquet is medium strength.

Taste : First, it's roast coffee, followed by a slight hit of toffee and caramel, then coffee bean and dark charred smoke. Roasted and fresh ground coffee are left lingering on the tongue. It's a rather complex profile yet stays linear and true to form.

Mouthfeel : Medium bodied, bordering on full bodied, with an undeniable slight creaminess that's brought into balance by the charred and smokey notes. It ends semi-dry.

Overall : Another hit Stout. I love it, you should too.

 1,228 characters

Photo of dmgeng
4.31/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Got this one as part of a mix and match 6pk and I was not disappointed.

A - Dark black color. Cascading dark brown head with lower staying power. Not a lot of lacing.

S - Initially there is the light smokiness that I was expecting accompanied by a strong malty aroma with roast and chocolate tones. The chocolate and malty aromas really compliment the smoke and roasted character which is more reminiscent of a great porter.

T - Much like the smell the smoked malt is throughout the entire taste and evolves over the palate but never overpowers it. The rich and sweeter stout character is really carrying the beer with malt, chocolate, and roast. The roasted character is there along with the smokiness but really is secondary to the sweeter and more robust flavors. The flavor is very similar to a porter but with more smoke and soft roasted character and overall more complexity. The bitterness is there from the roastiness but it provides balance to the sweeter flavors.
M - Moderate to low mouth-feel. Light carbonation. The lower carbonation and tons of flavor give this 7% beer more flavor impact but clears the palate well after the sip.

Overall, this is probably the best smoked beer I've ever had. Even thought the ABV is only 7% there is still a huge amount of complexity and flavors. The other facet that makes this beer very good is the complimenting smoke and not the overpowering smoke. All of the larger and more smoke forward beers leave more to be desired because they give the beer more of a bacon/burnt flavor that is less appealing than a gentile smoke character in your porter. I would like an imperial version of this with more body and more ABV but I will definitely get this one next winter.

Glass- Snifter

 1,740 characters

Photo of brureview
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a dark opaque almost black color with 2 F head in a Brooklyn dimpled mug.

Aroma: Burnt roasted malt.
Mouth Feel: tart and malty.
Taste: smoky, dark roasted malt.
Finish: tart roasted malt,with a hint of smoke.
Overall: excellent beer. I especially like the balance of dark roasted malt and smoke in this beer.

 318 characters

Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Brilliant deep black with a two finger chocolate head that quickly dissipates.
S: Smoke, wine and dark toasted malt with traces of chocolate and coffee.
T: Roast malts with chocolate seasoned lightly by smoke. M: Medium full body, medium carbonation, smooth and creamy.
O: the smoke is very suibtle in this beer and well balanced by the other elements.

 358 characters

Photo of SFNC
3.87/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Simply the blackest beer I have ever seen! If you liquified charcoal briquettes, it might not be this black. Minimal rust brown head. Smells of smoke amd roasted malts. A very good balance between the smoke and the sweetish malt base. Some lite coffee and dark chocolate undertones. Thick mouthfeel and a surprisingly light aftertaste. A great Smoked Ale and a very good Stout.

 385 characters

Photo of 57md
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Deep dark brown in color. Nice blend of roast and smoke on the nose. The smoke does not get out of control yet it outpaces the roasted malts in the flavor profile. There is a healthy body with a little creaminess.

 215 characters

Photo of SierraFlight
3.26/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into stout snifter. Opaque black with just a hint of brown at the stem of the glass. A one-finger brown head forms and slowly falls to a ring. No lacing. The aroma features smoked malt, roasted coffee, bakers chocolate, and molasses. Overall, the nose is mild and the smoke, specifically, is subtle. Fore’s taste follows the nose with a slight roasted malt, molasses, and chocolate sweetness followed by coffee and char bitterness. The smoke comes faintly on the finish. Medium body, creamy texture, moderate carbonation, and a long bitter finish with some smoke.

 584 characters

Photo of MNJR
3.91/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A solid, somewhat boozy stout. The smoke flavor is very subtle, with just a hint of smoke coming through for me. The smoke is clearer in the smell than the taste. I think that's a good thing. A little sweetness, and a nice earthy flavor. A little raisin and licorice flavor is in this brew. An interesting and unique stout. I enjoy it enough that I buy two or three 4-packs every time it comes in season.

 413 characters

Photo of biegaman
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Fore looks like it must require a rig, hoisting system, and industrial-sized drill string to produce - nevermind the bottle, how much does it cost by the barrel? Inky, oily, dense, and dark... all words to describe this formidable looking stout. Even its wicked mocha-tinted head is intimidating.

While impressions of burnt logs (i.e., oak) are plausible, the smoke element here is not an overtly "campfire" one and has none of those sooty, fireplace-in-need-of-cleaning notes. If anything it smells of singed hickory or charcoal and is a smokiness associated with BBQ cooking.

And yet it's so very acrid - like burnt coffee. Indeed, Fore tastes just as it looks: black, raw and unrefined. Flavours of dark-roast coffee beans and bitter, smoky cocoa nibs dominate, with only trace amounts of (relatively) sweeter fermented barley grain to lighten things up with a little nuttiness. The taste is likely to stick on your tongue for days.

As it warms, the peat component becomes more apparent. (I should have already mentioned this recipes uses peat-smoked malt in place of beechwood-smoked which is customary of Rauchbiers.) The result is an intense and gritty earthiness that, on some sips, contributes unique (if minor) notes of sea weed, moss, and scorched earth like those of certain single malts.

Eventually, the peat influence permeates its way throughout; before all is said and done you're sure to be smelling a trace of composting vegetal matter alongside all those acrid and smoky coffee beans. It's subtle enough to be unnoticed or ignored if desired to but for me, as a lover of Islay scotches as well as strong stouts, it's what makes this one come out on top. Loved it.

 1,690 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.74/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

On-tap 12/1/2014 at British Beer Company in Walpole, MA, served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a short brown head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains smoked malts, dark chocolate and some fruit.

T: The taste starts out with a strong smokiness that is followed by strong flavors of dark fruit and licorice. Then a hearty roasted malt character comes in. The hops presence is very mild but brings some balance. The after-taste is sweet and smoky.

M: A little crisp and a little smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, this is a solid beer to drink for a while if you’re in the mood for the style.

 784 characters

Photo of Beer-Ed
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

Pours black with a brown head. Aroma of coffee, espresso, chocolate, roast and little bit smoke. Aroma is more chocolate, very light smoked, coffee, low body. Good stuff, not special.

 183 characters

Photo of Nutwood
3.52/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance : Dark to opaque mahogany, little to no head.
Nose: Smoke, burnt toast, dark bread
Mouthfeel: Right on for a stout, medium full with some sharpness from the smoke.
Taste: Good, straightforward, nothing unusual or gimmicky, but also unremarable. Nicely burnt toast made from dark dark bread.
Overall: A good affordable go-to when you just gotta have smoked stout.

 374 characters

Photo of hardy008
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark black with a less than one finger mocha head. The aroma has dark chocolate, smoked malt, dark roasted malt, and coffee.

Has a smoky flavor with bot some sweetness and bitterness. There smoked malt, chocolate, dark roasted malt, and coffee. There is also some earthiness.

Medium to full bodied with modest carbonation. There is a light smoked malt aftertaste, Very easy to drink. Worth buying again for sure.

 422 characters

Photo of woodychandler
3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

The deeper that I go into the Bottle Backlog Eradication of the Summer of 2014, the more wild the beers that are surfacing! A smoked stout!?! What next?

I was anxious to begin and gave it a pretty heavy-handed pour before sitting back to watch the pseudo-cascade. It settled pretty quickly into two fingers of deep-tan/light-brown head, but what happened next was particularly remarkable. It seemed to collapse inwardly on itself and fell much more quickly than I expected, becoming mere wisps. Color was Opaque Black (SRM = 44), allowing zero light penetration. Nose was very smoky, but in more of a burnt charcoal way than the smokiness of a rauchbier. Mouthfeel was medium. The taste was more like bittersweet chocolate mingled with a sweet smokiness. It kind of put me in mind of chocolate-covered bacon, which I have tried. I am a fan of smoked beers, but this was a bit sweeter than I like, especially since it seemed to be getting in the way of the smokiness. Finish had that same bittersweet smokiness that I had been getting throughout. I was really kind of underwhelmed, especially given the hype and scores assigned to this beer. Not bad, per se, but leaving a lot of room for improvement.

 1,201 characters

Photo of jwc215
3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown with a thin, lasting brown head. Some lacing sticks.

The smell is of chocolate, roasted coffee, dark earthy tones with a hint of anise.

The taste is of sweet chocolate, smoke (meat-y?) and coffee. It has a lingering earthy finish.

It is medium-to-full bodied.

An excellent, complex but very drinkable, smoked stout.

 341 characters

Photo of barhoc11
3.47/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark, even for a 7% stout, there is no light getting through this thing

S: Not a lot going on with this

T: Smokey and fruity but not very multidimensional

M: Good thickness to it, not much to complain about

O: Not bad for a smoked stout but not something I would want to have every day

 293 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Dark Horse Fore Smoked Stout from Dark Horse Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 435 ratings.