Dismiss Notice
Sneak peek! BeerAdvocate magazine #104 (September 2015) featuring Leah & Oscar from Highland Brewing in Asheville, North Carolina. Learn more ...
Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest BeerAdvocate updates delivered to your inbox.

Guinness Black Lager - Guinness Ltd.

Not Rated.
Guinness Black LagerGuinness Black Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
71
okay

430 Reviews
THE BROS
71
okay

(Read More)
Reviews: 430
Hads: 1,909
rAvg: 3.07
pDev: 18.57%
Wants: 26
Gots: 265 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Guinness Ltd. visit their website
Ireland

Style | ABV
Euro Dark Lager |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: mdagnew on 04-03-2010

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (36) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Guinness Black Lager Alström Bros
Reviews: 430 | Hads: 1,909
Photo of WhiteHillsStore
2/5  rDev -34.9%

This beer is not a bad beer, just very bland. The appearance is dark black with an off white head. The smell is very subtle with some sweetness coming through. The taste was a bit flat. There was a bit of bitterness in the beginning but the rest was rather neutral. Also not a fan of the mouthfeel which was too thin and not enough carbonation. (344 characters)

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
2.97/5  rDev -3.3%

Singles cooler at Kessler's in Aberdeen, SD.

Appearance (4) : Cap pops off with a good hiss and pours a fine, three fingered head, beige in color. The body is a coffee brown-black with 95% opacity. Hardly any light passes through, if any at all. Licks of lace are left around the glass with a quarter-thickness ring left throughout the review.

Aroma (3.25) : Dark earth notes, some old coffee grounds, mud. Not much here for character in the aroma. A little bit of barley malt with the imagination.

Taste (2.75) : Bitter-sour clash of dark roasted malts with just a hint of roasted coffee. The roast coffee flavor dries on the palate like a coat of paint in your mouth. I'm not too happy with this one.

Mouthfeel (3) : Carbonated lager feel, with a slight creaminess from the head. Dry, putrid roast coffee on the finish that doesn't go away fast enough.

Overall (2.97) : Dump. A poorly executed dark beer. I didn't think I'd be giving this 5's, but I didn't expect it to be quite this bad either. The roast flavor is okay, but it stays too long and becomes pasty on the palate after the swallow. A good example of how to NOT brew a black lager. (1,151 characters)

Photo of Cybr
4.95/5  rDev +61.2%

Excellent beer - Full bodied and sessionable. Everything you could ask for in a beer. -0.05/5 because some other Schwarzbiers are better, in my opinion, though this is a go-to beer for me. (189 characters)

Photo of RonaldTheriot
4/5  rDev +30.3%

Guinness Black Lager has a pretty thick, spongy, beige head, which dies away rather quickly, a very dark brown appearance, with some brown highlights around the edges where the light hits it, and faint lacing left behind. The aroma is of mild, dark bread crust with a trace of sweetness. Taste is of dark, but not burnt, malt, sweetness, bread, and a rounding hop bitterness at the end. Mouthfeel is light to medium, and Guinness Black Lager finishes smooth and highly drinkable.

RJT (486 characters)

Photo of utopiajane
3.5/5  rDev +14%

Pours dark and completely opaque without much ruby hue or chance to see it. Thick persistent tan head of loose bubbles that lasted and left lace. Nose is low malt aroma that has a a light bit of floral hops that come forward as it warms. At first there is a only a grain scent then as the beer opens up , there is a light caramel, a bit of weak coffee and a lightly sweet and very light cocoa powder.

Taste is rich and fullish. A very small hint of the green apple right out of the bottle and then it fades off in the drink in submission to the roast. Medium mouthfeel and very creamy. Smooth malt that does show some mild roast as the beer opens up, light caramel, light cocoa and weak coffee. It finishes with a roasty dryness and a touch of hops at the very last minute.

I would say that this beer is not terribly sweet but has a luscious mouthfeel that accents the subtle flavors that it does have. Has a brief bite from carbonation and drinks very well. After taste is brown bread. (1,003 characters)

Photo of dakotaben
3.25/5  rDev +5.9%

A pours dark. not a log lasting tan head that did not stick around

S I smelled it right away when poured. Toasty grain taste.

T I get a significant part of the toast in the taste

M- moderate thickness with little carbonation.

O - People don’t seem to like this, but I think it is a decent beer. (304 characters)

Photo of ordybill
4/5  rDev +30.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 OZ bottle into a pint glass.
Aroma- Dark roasted malt
Appearance- Has a dark coffee color with a tan colored head.
Taste- Strong flavor of roasted malt with a bitter flavor, nice
Palate- A medium bodied brew with moderate carbonation, has a creamy to slight oily texture that goes well with the flavor.
Overall- A nice Euro Dark Lager, I would order this if I saw it on a bar list. (398 characters)

Photo of Bunman3
3.25/5  rDev +5.9%

This beer pours with a lot of promise - nice foamy head, good colour, decent nose. Overall, there is nothing wrong with this beer. It is underwhelming, more than anything else. The roasted malts are very faint and there is little depth or complexity in the flavour. There are far better Euro Dark Lagers than this, but I would not turn it down if there was nothing else to drink. (379 characters)

Photo of thefullmontiii
4.74/5  rDev +54.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

As the name suggests, it's a bit of a darker spin on Guinness stout. Pour yields a gentle head. The aroma is intoxicating. The roasted barley absolutely dances off the beer. Like the stout, it seems much darker and heavier than it actually is. The malt is balanced very nicely. So full of flavor, without feeling too overpowering. (330 characters)

Photo of GuinnessRegular92
2.5/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Guinness and Lager do not mix. I love Guinness Regular (in the pub) and Guinness Extra Stout and my favorite is Foreign Extra but this Guinness is terrible. It tasted slightly like Guinness but it just didn't hit the spot of the way other Guinness tastes. Lager is lager and Guinness is Guinness. Just keep it that way. (319 characters)

Photo of Haydn-Juby
2.66/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Black with some ruby red highlights. Head fizzed out right away like soda.

S: Very sweet. Some caramel. Somewhat metallic as well.

T: Like the aroma. A bit too sweet for my liking. I get a bit of a metallic flavor that I picked up in the aroma as well. Fakey overdone caramel malts also come through. I get very very minimal roast character. Bitterness is very low.

M: Soda water. Very water and weak with moderately higher carbonation.

O: I wanted to like this but it really just seemed like a sweeter, black, macro lager to me. I could easily see this appealing to you're average BMC drinker if they were told to drink it straight from the bottle and didn't know it was black. Poor example of style and just a lame lack luster beer in general. (752 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
2.75/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Bottle: Poured a clear dark color lager with a small off-white foamy head with OK retention. Aroma of lightly toasted malt is mildly pleasant. Taste is also dominated by lightly toasted malt with light dry bitter notes and watery finish. Body is light with OK carbonation. This is a water-down version of Guinness which says a lot about this beer. (347 characters)

Photo of lochef81
3.06/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

This lager pours a deep brownish mahogany with a dish soap like off white head and minimal lacing. The nose is an unappealing blend of malt sweetness and an almost chemical aroma. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy as one would expect from a guiness product. The flavor is a lack luster blend of roasted malts and...well, not much else. This one isn't bad but it is nit something I'll be returning to again. (403 characters)

Photo of T100Mark
3.75/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A 11.2 ounce bottle poured into a shaker pint glass.

Appearance - A pitch black beer with a foamy tan head that doesn't hang around very long. Good stickage. A handsome beer.

Smell - Just barely.

Taste - Mild roasted malt/black licorice flavor followed, quickly, by a crisp hop hit.

Mouth - Fizzy.

Overall - Imagine a very attractive women with little personality. This beer looks great but the overall experience is unsatisfying. Don't get me wrong; this is not a bad tasting beer. The taste, initially, is pleasant. Almost immediately, however, the flavor disappears. This beer is chugable but, aside from the buzz, what's the point. This beer is less than the some of its parts (hence, the 3.50 overall rating). P.S. Your American adjunct lager drinking buddies might like it. (788 characters)

Photo of Ohiolager
2.71/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Guinness Black Lager $8.99(OH)

11.2 oz brown bottle poured into a stemless white wine glass. No freshness date.

pours a shade lighter than Guinness draught. holding it up i can see my ceiling light through the glass. a two finger tan head that doesn't last long and gives way to minimal lacing.

i can smell some roasted malts, a bit of coffee, and maybe some caramel flavors.

taste follows the nose. A decent roasted malt followed by a weak touch of coffee. A slight toffee caramel taste at the end.

the mouth feel is poor. very watery and hardly any taste clings to your palate. It is smooth, but there's not a whole lot there to smooth out to begin with.

Overall this is what i expected. A supplement for Guinness draught. Not my Cup of tea if you know what i mean. I mean Guinness was just OK, it's little brother is gonna be weaker. (844 characters)

Photo of Organdrew
1.83/5  rDev -40.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.75

Picked one up on sale from the local liquor chain store. I'm under presumption that this is a new product.

Look: straight from the bottle. Very dark, and the bottle is pleasing to look at.

Smell: smelling straight from the bottle yields not much of anything.

taste: This is where it lacks. First sip tasted like water with a weird skunky taste. For a second I thought I had gotten bad beer but remembered this is a completely different style of the beer I had 30 minutes ago. Taste like bad water in my opinion with a very weak beer linger. Some weak "coffee-like" taste pokes through at the end.

mouthfeel: reminiscent of bad thick water.

overall: weak beer. I would DEFINITELY not try this again. I've tried other Guinness before and this is a WAY different beer. It does have that slightly "guinness" taste, that is coffe/roated toffee, but very subtle and under all that carbonated water. If that little Guinness signature taste was not there, I would swear I was drinking mineral water. I could not finish the beer and poured it out with about 1/3 left. It gave me a sore stomach.

The only plus is the great looking bottle. and maybe less calories. A strong Guinness character SHOULD NOT try to cover/dumb down their signature taste, Guinness and lager do not mix. (1,277 characters)

Photo of buschbeer
3.81/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

11.2 FL. OZ. bottle
Served in a Guinness proper pint glass

A - This beer is about as dark as Guinness stout. I was expecting it to look more like a bock. There is no light coming through. It is the darkest lager I have had. It is topped with an inch of tan head.

S - It smells like roasted malt with whiffs of cocoa.

T - There is some roasted malt flavor, not a lot, just some. It has a clean finish.

M - Medium. It is hefty for a lager.

O - It tastes like Guinness light. I think I may prefer it to Guinness on tap. On tap it tends to fill me up. This is easier to quaff. I am pleasantly surprised by this one. (620 characters)

Photo of goatgoat
3.16/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

poured from a ~15oz can into a pint glass.
A: Thick beige head that falls slowly and clings to the glass. Nice black color, clear and dark brown along the edges.
S: Bread, very light roast, a little earthy.
T: Smooth malty start, a surprisingly strong bitter kick which lingers. Pretty simple.
M: Light, smooth, creamy carbonation.
O: Nice clean black lager. Easy drinking with a light roasted character and smooth mouth. (421 characters)

Photo of thehyperduck
3.19/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

330 mL bottle from a six-pack picked up at the LCBO; bottled Oct. 29 2013. I've kinda-sorta wanted to try this one for a while, but not quite enough to pay $13.50 for a sixer. This particular pack was marked down a few bucks (getting a little close to expiry, maybe), and I figured now is as good a time as any to tick the stuff. Served well-chilled.

This one - aptly enough - pours an opaque black colour, topped with one finger of fizzy, frothy, light beige-coloured head. It fizzles away fairly quickly over the next minute or so, resulting in a wispy film on the surface, a narrow collar and an attractive doily pattern of lacing on the glass. The aroma is very subdued, to the point that this beer barely even smells like anything. There's a faint wisp of roasted malt and maybe a touch of coffee... come to think of it, this basically smells the same as their regular nitro stout.

Very plain, but highly drinkable and quite clean-tasting for a black lager. Roasted barley is really the only dominant flavour in play, with smaller hints of caramel and raisin. Some weak coffee vibes toward the finish, which is rather grainy and crisp like a lager should be. Not much of an aftertaste; a bit of light roast and metallicity. Light-bodied and fairly watery, with the fizzy, high carbonation levels that are typical of a macro lager. As boring as this is, it's very light and sessionable, and completely inoffensive as well.

Final Grade: 3.19, a C+. Guinness Black Lager is no schwarzbier - it's dull and forgettable compared to the German examples I've tried, although technically this is a 'Euro Dark Lager' so I suppose that comparison is of questionable fairness. That being said, there's nothing really wrong with this beer - I'd drink it again and maybe pay for a pint at the bar if I were in the mood, though I doubt I'd buy it in-store at its standard price point. A decent rendition of an inherently mediocre beer style. (1,935 characters)

Photo of Offa
2.73/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

This "cold brewed" lager is a bland, characterless dud.

Black, it has a medium-tan head steadily shrinking to thin veneer & foamy ring, a little lace, so it looks fairly good.

Aroma is light, roasty chocolatey prune, faintly soapy - decently good but not great and a bit mild.
Taste is the real weakness here - it's very light, thin in feel and character, with thin, light toasty taste and not much else except a hint of mineral. It is very bland, one-dimensional, finishes abruptly like mineral water with a little ground0up burnt toast in it. (546 characters)

Photo of nicholas2121
3.59/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Guinness Black Lager Poured from a can into a glass. Dark also Black. Over all I really Like this brew. Not something I would get on a everyday bases. But drinkable. It is Heavy Compared to American style Lagers. I got the smell of a dark rich beer. Over all I gave this brew a 3.75. Not a big fan of Guinness Brews but this one is good. (337 characters)

Photo of TeamMathis
3.39/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Black. Cola. Nice frothy head becomes a light lace.
Smell: Some malt and roasted coffee.
Taste: Watered down cola. Hint of roasted malt. Touch of honey.

This is pretty unremarkable. It really does have the taste and feel of a watered down cola. The malt is there, barely; something roasted is about all you'll get out of it. It's enjoyable, but mainly in the drinkability factor. I wouldn't recommend this one. (423 characters)

Photo of Sipzzz
4.09/5  rDev +33.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

I'v enjoyed Guinness black lager on-tap as well as from the bottle. I have determined this beer needs poured to truly enjoy, despite the fact that the bottle says "ok to drink from bottle".

Tan, foamy head that courses through the body when poured correctly. Dark, impenetrable body.

Smell is lacking, smells the same as Guinness draught, side-by-side it would be hard to tell the difference before tasting.

Taste is amazing, full-bodied with minimal bitterness and a lasting flavorful aftertaste that lingers until your next drink.

Mouthfeel, Like Guinness draught and Blue-moon it is very smooth leaving a refreshing, satisfying feel as it goes down. Almost perfect in my opinion. (686 characters)

Photo of Cavanaghty
3.33/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Poured from can into a pint glass.

Appearance: As the name implies, black in color with a foamy beige head. Mild lacing on the glass.

Smell: Light malts and hops.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Smooth medium bodied. Taste of light bitter hops with malts, bread like yeast as well.

Overall: Not a bad brew. I would have this again if it was offered to me. (344 characters)

Photo of Mike_Moe
2.88/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Dark color with a brown head.
Aroma: Fairly strong-non distinct beer smell at the beginning of the pour, but diminished quickly.
Flavor: Lightly roasted barley flavor with a slightly bitter finish. This is a light bodied lager, finishing with a harsh carbonation.
Overall: I'm not sure what Guinness is trying to do with this beer. With the roasted barley, it starts out with the possibility of being a good light bodied ale. It however misses the mark starting with its light aroma. The beer starts with toasted malt promise, but ends up being with a flat commercialized beer concoction. (601 characters)

Guinness Black Lager from Guinness Ltd.
71 out of 100 based on 430 ratings.