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Dampf Loc - Local Option

Not Rated.
Dampf LocDampf Loc

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

34 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 34
Hads: 156
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 9.09%
Wants: 8
Gots: 7 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Local Option visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
California Common / Steam Beer |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TMoney2591 on 11-24-2011

Dampf Loc is an all-barley warm fermented ale brewed by the folks from Chicago’s Local Option; inspired by “Dampfbier” (literally “steam beer”) originally crafted by medieval peasant inhabitants of southeast Bavaria. During the fermentation process generous amounts of foam and surface bubbles burst in the tank, giving the illusion that the ferment is boiling or “steaming.” Tony Russomanno and Noah Hopkins took it upon themselves to brew Dampf Loc as a modern interpretation of its Teutonic predecessor, creating a “Hefe Gerste” ale that is true to its roots; unmistakable in character yet accessible to beer drinkers of all palates.

Dampf Loc has a mild hop profile, medium body with pleasant effervescence and a clear, rich, orange hue. Dampf Loc is ideal for warm months, yet enjoyable year round.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 34 | Hads: 156
Photo of chinchill
3.78/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

500 ml bottle poured into lager glass. No bottle dating found. Some sediment remained stuck to the bottom of the bottle.

Pours lightly hazy, copper-orange in color. There is a lot of visible carbonation that rises to a moderate size, off-white head with good retention. Some streaks and patches of sticky lacing cling to the glass.

Aroma: Earthy and herbal hops with grains in about equal measure but with the hops a little more prominent than the malty aspects. Hints of yeast, honey and mild spices.

Taste: More malty/bready than the aroma indicates. Hints of honey and apple juice. Mild bitterness even on the finish

Feel: Medium carbonation and body, with both leaning towards a higher level. Smooth and soft.

Overall: a good beer for sure, but not as distinctive as the description (e.g., "unmistakable in character") suggests. Enjoyment increased as I headed towards the bottom of the glass. Good with food. (925 characters)

Photo of justinp444
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark straw orange yellow with a 2 and a half inch thick head. Smell of lager yeast, caramel, sweet malt, and floral. Taste is melon, caramel, citrus, some floral, big bread-y malt, and a little sweet and bitter. It has a big crisp mouth feel and a moderate to light body. Really is a style of it's own and not so much like a american steam beer. (353 characters)

Photo of Brutaltruth
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed from the bottle in a snifter. This FINE steam lager pours a lightly hazy deep amber with a beautiful head of white foam that dissipates to a thin layer and thick ring with some stupendous lacing. A very clean nose of light caramel malts, honey suckle, light bittering hops, and moderate grain notes. Flavors surpass with a sweet honey caramel flavor that has some medium bitterness to cut through the sweetness with a light grain and sweet note on the back of the taste and a crisp finish. Begs for a plate of spicy food. Great mouth feel with moderately high carbonation finishes wet, clean, and refreshing.

Cheers (629 characters)

Photo of dmgeng
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I thought this beer was a hefe by mistake but since I wasn't expecting a heavy beer this one came out alright.

A - Light amber color basically a caramel that is slightly hazy. Fluffy white head that sits high. Very good lacing.

S - Malty aroma with caramel and lager notes. Also grainy tones and some noble hops. Smells like a commercial amber lager.

T - Tastes of sweet maltiness with some grain, caramel, and lager flavor. This beer takes you average "beer" and kicks it up to the next level with layers of clean and delicious flavors. Only a light bitterness and some noble hop character to balance the sweet malt character.

M - Light mouth-feel. Moderate carbonation. Only slightly sweet but very drinkable.

Overall, this one rivals Boston Lager with a similar flavor and a similar drinkability. I would strongly recommend this if you haven't gotten a chance to try a steam beer. This beer has the flavor impact of a craft ale with a smoother and crisper feel that you usually find in commercial lagers. Though you get what you pay for with this one it's still pretty good.

Glass- 20oz craft beer glass (1,114 characters)

Photo of pat61
4.21/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours hazy gold to amber under a 1” bone white cap with very fine bubbles. Produces light lace.
S: Overripe fruit aromas very faint banana, traces of caramel and berry.
T: Has a light caramel flavor with most of the sweetness fermented out backed by berry with a mild hop accent.
F: Very creamy with a medium body and fermentation.
O: They have fermented this at the higher end of the range to pull out more funky fruit flavors in a beer with moderate alcohol levels. (476 characters)

Photo of Ozzylizard
3.79/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Undated bottle at 40 degrees into nonic
Aroma initially a quick whiff of rotting fruit esters which is thankfully replaced by a malty aroma
Head large (6 cm, aggressive pour), off white, frothy, slowly diminishing to 3 mm ring and layer
Lacing poor – few small islands of tiny bubbles
Body light yellow, slight haze
Flavor slightly malty with some hop bitterness; no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate medium, watery, lively carbonation

Appearance 4, Aroma 3.75, Flavor 3.75, Palate 4, Overall 3.75 (495 characters)

Photo of QueerBeer
2.7/5  rDev -29.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Wasn't sure what to expect from this as I was unfamiliar with the term 'dampfbier' until now. Wasn't a good sign when I uncapped it and it immediately foamed over. After the overactive effervescence dissipated quite quickly, it's a pretty good-looking beer. Nice medium amber, opaque but no haze. Didn't get a lot on the aroma, so can't comment there. But the taste really did not do it for me. Everything about this beer was mild to the point of bland except the metallic aftertaste. Combine that with a dry finish, and I wasn't all that thrilled. (548 characters)

Photo of superspak
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle into lager glass, no bottle dating. Pours lightly hazy golden orange color with a 1-2 finger dense off white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a large amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of biscuit, cracker, toast, light caramel, pear, apple, floral, grass, pepper, light nuttiness, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance of bready malt, earthy hop, and yeast ester notes; with good strength. Taste of biscuit, cracker, toast, nuttiness, light caramel, pear, apple, herbal, floral, grass, pepper, and yeast earthiness. Minimal earthy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of biscuit, cracker, toast, nuttiness, light caramel, pear, apple, herbal, floral, grass, light pepper, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and robustness of bready malt, earthy hop, and yeast ester flavors; with zero cloying flavors after the finish. A slight metallic note noticed on the finish, but not really detrimental to the flavor. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth, moderately crisp, and lightly bready mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a very nice steam beer style. All around good balance and robustness of bready malt, earthy hops, and yeast ester flavors; and very smooth to drink. A very enjoyable offering. (1,465 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16.9oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light golden brown color, with a short off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains lager yeast, caramelized malts, some citrus and some hops.

T: The taste starts out bready with flavors of lager yeast and a hearty malt character followed by mildly sweet flavors of caramel and citrus. The hops presence is very mild but brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly bready.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, this is a solid lager to drink for a long time. (711 characters)

Photo of OrestesMethuon
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

A very interesting Teutonic take on a style most commonly associated with California, Dampf Loc is conceptually really good, but unfortunately—in terms of taste—it's only a good, and not a great, beer. In certain senses, this new-world concoction of the old Bavarian Hefe Gerste is reminiscent of an Altbier: turbid, brown-orange in its appearance, richly malty, and finishing with notes suffused by a slightly-acidic hoppy bitterness. The primary differences—and where there is some commonality with other steam beers I've sampled—are this beer's fundamental creaminess, its smooth but appreciable effervescence and head, and the mildness of its yeast-fruity undertones.

Though Local Option boasts it's "ideal for warm months", I'd add the caveat that it's a relative claim: good for a warm, mild Bavarian summers, perhaps, but better suited to late-spring or early-autumn in places with truly hot, boggy "warm months". All in all, however, Dampf Loc is a beer that makes one think—though I wouldn't deign to call it "challenging"—while being very drinkable, if not especially delicious; and I'll add bonus points, moreover, for all the welcome historical and contextual patter the brewery provides the drinker. (1,228 characters)

Photo of friendofbeer
4.93/5  rDev +28.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served into a standard pint glass at Green Street Smoked Meats in Chicago.

Pours with rich head, very light copper tones, ever so slightly hazy. Superb head retention. Rich fresh barley on the nose, hints of spice from hops, nutty, slightly grassy, toast notes. Medium bodied, playful and slight malt sweetness.

Have not tried too many Dampfbiers but this was an incredibly balanced, drinkable ale with tons of rich grain quality. Very glad to have had the opportunity to try this one. (487 characters)

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.49/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Slight chill haze on an orange-tinged gold color. Head is small, bubbly, and bright-white. Lively carbonation on the pour.

Smell: Pale malt sweetness. A hint of wheat with a mild cracker snap in the back. Lightly bready with a small citrus hop element. Clean. Lightly floral. Super mellow and easy. A hint of apple skin. Some mild fruity esters and a clean yeast.

Taste: Light malty sweetness. Clean pale malts. Slight push of fruity esters. Lightly toasted with some undercooked bread. Hops are leafy with a small citrus and herbal push. Clean yeast. Slight smack of something like wheat on the finish. A touch of caramel sweetness as well.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light body. Moderate carbonation. Clean and slightly crisp.

Overall: It could see regular rotation.

The better of the two beers I picked up from Local Option. Nice and clean and easy. Unexciting, but that's ok. (895 characters)

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.99/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Dogfish Head pint glass. Pours a medium coppery amber with a half finger white head with excellent persistence and light lacing. Aroma of sweet caramel malt, nuts, mildly sweet lactic; I don't know why but this is reminiscent of a mild milk stout. Flavor is similar to aroma with sweet caramel malt, nuts, mild grassy hops, finishes more attenuated with less malt with light nuttiness and faint hops. Nice medium body with some creaminess. A quite nice take on the California common style, a bit sweeter and nuttier, which is nice for a change. The initial flavors are reminiscent of a very light brown ale. Quite quaffable and interesting. If this is faithful to the Dampfbier style, I'm surprised they are no longer around. I enjoyed this one; could be my favorite of this style so far. (802 characters)

Photo of metter98
3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is slightly hazy pale yellow in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high dense off white head that died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface and a thick collar around the edge of the glass. The head has good retention properties and never completely faded away.
S: Light to moderate aromas of grainy malts are present in the nose along with notes of bready and nutty malts.
T: Much like the smell, the taste is quite malty and tastes like an artisan bread with complementary flavors of multi-grain bread and hints of nutty and toasted malts as well as earthy and doughy yeast. No hops are perceptible, but they mask any associated sweetness from the malts.
M: It feels a bit shy of being medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: I've never tried a "Dampfbier" before, but this seems to be an interesting and unique German style. It's quite malty but doesn't seem heavy on the palate and as a result is rather drinkable. (1,037 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.15/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

we need more beer like this on the market, what a brilliant offering. copper in color, great active white head and rejuvenation ability. nose that's balanced with pale English and American malt, and west coast hops. minerally, clean, almost like a lager. the taste is fresh grains up front and balancing European style hopping on the back end. its more robust than any steam beer I have had before, more flavorful and interesting. grassy notes throughout, as well as a toasted nutty complex in the middle. still its quite light and easy drinking. medium body, very active carbonation, and crispness to the finish that maximizes refreshment. it really pepped me up this beer, impressed me. for a beer style that has been either forgotten or misinterpreted, this was really a breath of fresh air. id love to get this bottled out here in Colorado. (844 characters)

Photo of falloutsnow
3.66/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From: Binny's, Schaumburg, IL
Date: None on bottle
Glass: Tulip

A somewhat unbalanced, yet mild enough beer to pull it off, Dampf Loc is substantially malty, with little hop presence. The Munich (and possibly other) malts work well as a major influence, and I never felt that there was a need for hop presence in the beer. Would I get it again? Sure, if it were in six-packs for $8. A half-liter for $5 does not make me want to revisit this beer.

Pours a 2cm tall head of slightly off-white foam, made up of small and medium-sized bubbles, giving a somewhat sponge-like appearance. Retention is average, the foam lasting about one minute in a quick decline to a thin ring around the glass and a small island of foam remaining atop the center of the beer's body. Lacing is nonexistent. Beer's body is a bright golden orange in color, with light bringing out golden yellow hues. Carbonation is visible through the transparent body, low in number and moderate in activity.

Aroma is malt-forward, mostly Munich, perhaps a bit of Vienna and pale added for complexity. Result is largely of slightly toasted, full-bodied brown bread crusts. Little hop presence, the result being a sweet and bread-like aroma.

Front of palate is full of toasted bread crust sweetness, with hints of light caramel. Mid-palate experiences continued malt characters of toasted bread crusts, light caramel sweetness, and very mild, clean hop bitterness lingering in the background. Back of palate is, as expected, of toasted bread crusts, light caramel, and a modest amount of toasted nuts. Aftertaste of lingering toasted bread crusts, lightly sweet caramel, and very faint bitterness.

Beer is medium-light to light in body, with carbonation of medium intensity, resulting in a beer that is foamy, then smooth on the palate. Closes dry, with substantial stickiness remaining on palate. (1,862 characters)

Photo of NewGlarusFan
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a pint glass

A) Murky yellowish brown color, two finger head.

S) yeast, malt, bread, no hop character what so ever

T) malty, toast, biscut, lager yeast

M) Crisp medium carbonation, no sting, light body, near smooth

O) it is a good beer for summer! (265 characters)

Photo of avalon07
3.82/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a brown color and a murky, thick consistency. There was a thin, foamy head that quickly dissipated. OK lacing.

S: A very subtle aroma of malt, caramel, and a sweet fruitiness.

T: Tasted of fair amount of malt, some caramel, and an unidentifiable fruity quality. The typical steam beer flavor isn't exactly open to complexity, but this one is solidly appealing.

M: A huge amount of carbonation with a lively finish. Light-bodied.

O: While Dampf Loc is an uneven beer in some spots, it is likeable and drinkable. (559 characters)

Photo of Fcolle2
3.79/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours amber in color with a 1 finger white head that has good retention

Nose has some dark fruity esters that blend into some subtle spicy phenols With a sweet Carmel malt backbone and some slight spicy hops

Taste starts with a mild fruity sweetness that is followed by a light Carmel malt and some earthy tannin's

Mouthfeel has a medium body and some good carbonation. (372 characters)

Photo of rhoadsrage
3.76/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

(Served in a tulip glass)
A- This beer pours a clear slightly dense aged copper body with a gentle sea of swirling microbubbles and a creamy light tan head that pushes above the glass and holds its shape.

S- The mineral water aroma is followed by a husky brown malt note that is very soft and pretty clean. The more it opens the more it starts to smell like iced tea.

T- The pale malt and fresh brown malt flavor has some toasted malt character with a spicy note in the finish. There is a tangy dried leaves taste that turns more into an iced tea taste with some green hop notes in the aftertaste. As the beer opens up it starts to taste more like fresh brown wort.

M- There is a medium-light mouthfeel with a gentle fizz in the finish and no alcohol heat noticed.

O- This beer has an amazing head with some great fresh malt flavor but the odd iced tea and bitter green hops finish is odd and really gets in the way of the taste. (936 characters)

Photo of Rifugium
3.52/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at TJ's, Paoli, PA

Interesting beer to see in my area. Kind of wish I brought my Local Option cervoise #properglassware to the bar with me, but oh well. Poured a darker amber color, more deep than hazy, with a small but firm cap of white head, that retained well and left spots of lacing on the glass. Malty sweet aroma, toasted grains, caramel, fruity esters. Sweet caramel malts were in charge again on the palate, toasted bread crusts, a little buttery, hops very mild and somewhat fruity/floral. I don't know...seemed a bit off-balance to me. There was a crispness to the mouthfeel that typically comes from the hops in a beer, but in this one, I just didn't get very much hoppiness in the flavor. Light-medium body. Not really bad overall, but just seemed somewhat off to me. (799 characters)

Photo of elNopalero
3.99/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Light amber, doesn’t seem to look the way I imagine steam beers looking—but that’s based on the local, trademarked steam beer out here.

The aroma has a bready crispness to it. Some light grassy notes compete with the fresh bread.
The flavor has a surprising bitterness. Again, something which I hadn’t expected but it is definitely welcome. This was a welcome surprise and one which has me rethinking my expectations of the style. (439 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
3.96/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured on tap at Pizza Paradiso Dupont into a mug.

A crystal clear body, golden dark copper brown and red. Some fast rising carbonation with a fain tan off white head presented.

Nose is a little bit subdued, mild toasty crisp hints of caramel with a mild sweetness.

Toasty crisp action hits on the palate, with a large chunk of fruit esters. Caramel hinting action is subdued but carries through a little bit still maintaining some good density. Toasty sense of brown spices as well comes out which compliments nicely.

Easy drinking, and very thirst quenching. Good to know there are other Dampfbiers out there worth drinking. (631 characters)

Photo of SLeffler27
3.96/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear dark copper with a big, long-lasting fluffy marshmallow head that leaves a coating of lace on the pint glass.

The aroma is caramel with a light hop presence and a background of spice.

Caramel malt with some wheat bread. Overall, crisp, well balanced with a long subtle finish.

Full body with a creamy texture and soft carbonation. Residual sugar is left on the lips. Overall, dry with no presence of alcohol.

This is a good drinking beer, perhaps sessionable. (476 characters)

Photo of gory4d
4.3/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Mission Dolores; served in a tulip glass. It pours a dark tan with a low head, not much lacing. The smell is vegetal and malty, with some notes of stone fruit going a little sour. The taste is very nice, lots of mellow malt with a twinge of bitterness, a faint tang in the background. It's a little thick, highly carbonated. I could drink quite a bit of this in a sitting, if it were a little less alcoholic. A fine beer. (431 characters)

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Dampf Loc from Local Option
86 out of 100 based on 34 ratings.