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Beerlao Dark - Lao Brewery Co.

Not Rated.
Beerlao DarkBeerlao Dark

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
76
okay

128 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 128
Reviews: 67
rAvg: 3.27
pDev: 15.9%
Wants: 2
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Lao Brewery Co. visit their website
Laos

Style | ABV
Euro Dark Lager |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 12-31-2005

Beerlao Dark is an award winning beer brewed with the finest ingredients and roasted malt. A full-bodied tasted experience with a golden brown color.
View: Beers (4) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 128 | Reviews: 67
Photo of AgentMunky
2.62/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 33cL bottle into a Pepsi glass in Huay Xing.

Clear and brown-gold with short lived but impressive head and good lacing. It smells sour, yeasty, and unpalatable. However, it's actually pretty okay. Heavier and sweeter than Beerlao, it makes sense it'd be stronger but it's not obvious. Overall, it's still a pretty paltry lager; all things considered I'll stick to the standard.

Photo of TX-Badger
3/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear darker amber color with off-white head. Toasted grain on the nose; follows onto the palate. Finishes with a little sweetness from the malt.

Photo of 31Sam13
3.77/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Sweet and more full-bodied than what you find in this part of the world. I think that it had a nice, fruity complexity and was well done.

Photo of Deggar
3.88/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

when in Thailand and all you can find is light lagers this beer is like Carmel Gold

Photo of GreesyFizeek
2.09/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 4 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

Bottle purchased at Beers of the World in Henrietta, NY.

Pours a golden brown color, not all that dark, despite the title. It has a pretty long lasting 2 inch head, and a lot of lacing. The superlatives end here.

This smells musty and stale, like old bread. I have no idea how old this bottle is, but it can't be new.

This tastes musty and stale at all, with a bit of buttery diacetyl feel to it too. This is just simply not good. I'm against drain pouring, but I almost did throughout the whole session. I finished it, but it was hard. If I try really hard I can pull out weirdly sweet caramel. Meh, at best.

This is medium bodied, with a slick, oily, and gross mouthfeel. Really hard to get down. There's a medium amount of carbonation.

This is a big miss, in just about every way.

Photo of MarkoNm
2.01/5  rDev -38.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.75

Pours a light brown color with a decent tan colored head and a nice retention.
The aroma is very weak, hardly picked up, just some basic malty aroma.
The taste ois sweet throughout, quite bland withouth any real finish.
Drinkable but that's it. No real taste to it.

Photo of VinceJones
4.5/5  rDev +37.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This is one amazing beer. I was in a discount grocery store and stumbled upon this, selling for just $2.99 for a 6 pack. Seriously, $2.99. I have tried a few discounted beers, and so far, they rank up there with the best micro brews I have had. Smooth and Zesty! This is one of them, and even my girlfriend (who is not too huge a beer fan) agrees. Amazing is all I can say. It honestly is one of the best tasting micro brews I have ever had. That with the $2.99 price? Unbelievable, like seriously unbelievable. This is a beer that you can drink 1 after another, or drink with a good steak or burger. It is cheaper than most micro brews by 3x (at least at this store here in cali), and tastes as good or better. If you like dark beers, you gotta get your lips on these. I am all for American brews, but this imported brew blows American brews out of the water. As I was drinking it, I was thinking about the cost to make it, bottle it, import it on boats from thousands of miles away, and how it still is so cheap and so damn good tasting. I am blown away. The only reason I didn't give it a 5 is because it is the first time I have had it.

Photo of biegaman
3.34/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beerlao Dark appears to live up to its name; a deep, toasty chestnut tone, the beer is indeed dark (the odd flickering highlight notwithstanding). Although technically transparent, the colour is such that everything appear like shadows when viewed through the beer. Its head looks something like grated parmigiano and leaves rings of lacing.

There's notions of bready, lightly toasted Munich and nutty Vienna malts but they're severely muffled. The distortion is something like when you're stopped at a red light and the car in the next lane rolls up with their radio blaring but the windows closed; you can hear the sounds but can't make out the specific words.

In this case, the clean, natural, and wholesome flavours of the malts are obstructed by what seems to be some kind of corn-derived adjunct. The notes of brown bread crusts and toasted nuts are enveloped in a cloying, corn syrup-like texture, with a minimal amount of the roasted maltiness making it to the aftertaste. It's agreeable, but too far too mild.

Naturally, however, Laos does not have the long brewing tradition of Germany and it would be unreasonable to expect a beer of comparable richness and technical virtuosity. All things considered, this brewery's done a fair job. Overlooking the impressions of adjunct, the lager is reasonably clean with natural apple-y fruit esters and traces of toffee sweetness.

Beerlao Dark does not compare to the dark lagers of continental Europe but it's one of the more approachable, flavourful, and all around better beers I've tried from Southeast Asia. Having never traveled there I imagine this may be as good as it gets in that part of the world (a reasonable assumption given the awful exports I've been subjected to).

Photo of FLima
3.27/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Brown reddish color with a one finger caramel head with a medium retention and leaving some laces.
Aroma of caramels, booze and pine.
Flavor of sweet toasted malt, booze, toffee, prune and herbal and earthy hops. Dry and bitter aftertaste
Light to watery body with good carbonation.
Decent dark lager. Its body is a bit too thin and boozy, but its hoppy and caramel profile were a positive surprise. Overall it became an interesting beer.

Photo of sleazo
3.36/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A_chestnut brown with a tan head. Retention not so good though there is some lacing.

S_Caramel malts with a vague tinny presence.

T_Caramel hits again up front followed by a grassy dryness. Finish is a nice combo of the two. A hint of alcohol also lingers.

M_Light bodied and fairly effervescent.

O_Not bad as far as Asian lagers go. It goes well with spicy food.

Photo of Slatetank
3.57/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I purchased this from Half Time, enjoyed the bottle chilled from a tulip

The color is practically black with almost opaque appearance and thick pale tan cap with very fine bead lace clings in rings. The smell is very malty with bready toasted aromas with mild sweetness and light creamy yeast esters. The feel is very good with moderately high carbonation and gentle sweetness with slight toastiness and mild bitterness with slight creamy yeasty feel mid palate and semi-sweet carbonated finish.

The flavor has a mild cereal and bready malt flavor which is mildly sweet essence with toastiness of lightly roasted malt and gentle yeast which has a tangy flavor but not over the top, just enough to notice as it finishes with a slight crisp bran-like taste with a mix of sweetness and earthy malt flavors with slight residual sweetness as it finishes with a slight dark brown sugar accent. Overall a pretty decent dark lager, not the best, but has a nice drinkability and was better than expected

Photo of Huhzubendah
3.17/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

First beer from Laos.

The appearance is dark mahogany with crimson highlights. Big soapy white head that hangs around for a long time. The aroma is pretty faint. Some lager yeast, dark fruits, brown bread. Prickly carbonation (too prickly actually) with some hop bitterness in the back. A tad sweet. Light to medium in body. Ok.

Photo of beijingbrewer
3.81/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Had in Beijing.
330ml bottle poured into a pint glass.
Born on date: 2/7/13.
ABV: 6.5%
Ingredients list water, barley, rice, yeast, and hop.

A- Light caramel brown with hints of red around the outside. Held up to the light looks very red. Quite clear, light passes right through. Better head retention than I was expecting from an Asian lager. Moderate lacing.

S- Nutty, roasted malt. Sweet dark fruit.

T- Sweetness just barely kept in check by a slightly bitter, roasted flavor. Hits the tongue with a bit of dark fruit, cherries and raisins. A bit boozy in the middle. Finishes a bit dried with an acidid, coffee-like bitterness.

M- Not too heavy. Sweet and boozy while still managing to be drinkable and refreshing.

Photo of artoolemomo
3.17/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance- Pours up a good amount of head that appears to have pretty good retention. The head is a very light beige while the body is a dark amber to maroon which shows flashes of medium amber when held up to the light. Some lacing is left behind.

Nose- Nothing much at the moment. I get a little bit of caramel and banana from the bottle but nothing from the glass. When I swirl the glass, I get some roasted notes and bit of rice but that's about it. Fairly boring.

Taste- At first taste, this seems to have rice around the edges. Some roasted notes appear along with some faint caramel. More interesting than the nose but there is still a considerable lack of presence. Faint hint of chocolate as the roasted malt/coffee finish begins to strengthen. It's pretty well integrated but also rather boring. Some woodiness to the finish. Slightly above average and a little bit better than Guinness Black Lager.

Mouthfeel- Light bodied with light carbonation. Some smoothness to the texture.

Drinkability- Very easygoing. However, I will have to pass on this in future because of 2.29 price tag. No heat.

Overall- Slightly above average. Wouldn't purchase again but I wouldn't refuse it if someone offered it to me.

Photo of dbrauneis
3.15/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a crystal clear deep brownish amber with light to moderate amounts of visible carbonation and some ruby red highlights. The beer has a three finger tall dense foamy beige head that slowly reduces to a quarter finger tall pillowy layer covering the entire surface of the beer with a slightly thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Overall the aroma of this beer is fairly sweet with moderate notes of fruity and nutty malts

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of sweet nutty malts with hints of fruity yeast. There is a light amount of bitterness in the finish that fades very quickly.

M: Light bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly thin/watery with hints of dryness in the finish.

O: This is a surprising easy to drink Euro Dark Lager with a slightly lighter body which makes it good for drinking in warm weather. Pairs well with intensely flavorful foods.

Photo of tbeckett
2.76/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Bottle at a restaurant on Don Det. From notes.

A - Pours bright with a root beer colour. One finger light beige head. Mild-medium carbonation. No lace, tiny spot of retention on the side of the glass.

S - Nutty. Sugar, dark fruit, coffee. Sweeter elements def come through stronger. Mild but pleasant.

T - Sugary. Some coffee flavour. Mild nuttiness again. Quite sugary, but the nuttiness is alright.

M - Strong carbonation, medium body and a sweet, nutty finish.

O/D - An OK dark lager. Definitely a step up from the run of the mill yellow lagers around the country. I could have a few of these but it really doesn't stand out too much style wise. Decent, but off style and far too sweet.

Photo of rickyleepotts
3.99/5  rDev +22%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.75

There are two beers on the list from the Lao Brewing Company. This is one of them, and we grabbed this the other night at Total Wine & More. We spent $100, so we have enough beer to last us a few weeks! I think shopping for beer is my favorite part. Anyway, this beer is brewed in Laos, a small country in Southeast Asia. I need to plan a trip to Asia. There is some great diving over there, and it is a part of the world I have never been.

I don't recall ever having this beer before, but I do like the Euro dark lager style. The tasting notes mention toffee and coffee… and while I do not expect a lot of those aromas (or flavor) I am sure it will be easy drinking and enjoyable. I didn't realize they used rice in the brewing process. Makes sense, and I will be curious to see if that changes the flavor of the beer. Let's drink!

In the Glass: This is darker than I expected. It has a deep dark red color… almost brown. The head is nice, too. For a beer that I would assume is a domestic to Laos, I didn't expect it to have much character. But the head is nice and white, and it has a decent lace.

Nose: I thought I could smell this as I was pouring it in the glass, but Sheryl was making tea. She is on a tea kick right now… and I will admit, the stuff smells good. Doesn't taste very good, but smells good. At any rate, this beer smells like a traditional Euro pale lager. Beers like this are typically sweet, and have a lot of different flavors going on. Hopefully this one won't disappoint.

Flavor: That's actually really good. I am hooked on this home-grown rice thing. A few weeks ago, I had a wild rice double IPA that was amazing. The rice really came through in the flavor. The rice really comes through in this one, too. I can see what they mean about the beer being easy to drink. Bravo Lao Brewing Company. You have just thoroughly impressed me with this release!

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is soft, mellow, and leaves a nice little pillow of flavor on the back of the palate. They claim the rice is what mellows this beer… and if I didn't know about the rice beforehand, I would comment on how easy this is to drink. I wonder if this beer would age for two or three years. Beers like this shouldn't, but as mellow as this is, I wonder what it would taste like with seer carbonation.

Aftertaste: The aftertaste is solid, as well. There is a hint of malt and some sublet hoppy characters creeping in there. If you didn't know this beer was over 6% ABV, you could drink 6 of these and not even realize it! Very easy to drink with a lovely flavor. I bet this would also pair well with food.

For our first experience with Beerlao Euro Dark Lager, I am very impressed. I will be buying more of this in the near future. I bet this would be a great beer to pair with some brown rice sushi or with an Asian chicken dish.

Photo of chinchill
3.33/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

undated 330 ml bottle.
Pours clear dark brown with a large tan white head that has moderate duration.
Very sweet aroma of roasted malts, caramel and rice.
Also has a sweet and roasty flavor, but not nearly as sweet as the aroma suggests.

Medium body with medium carbonation.
O: Interesting and a little better than expected.

Photo of tdm168
3.11/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - dark, translucent amber with a big, thick cap of brownish, off white head that has pretty good retention

S - sweet caramel

T - faint caramel, a slight bitterness; very, very light flavor profile

M - light to medium bodied, smooth, a bit sticky, well carbonated

This is a pretty simple, one-dimensional beer. If this were American it'd be a poorly put together amber lager. As a European lager I give it slightly more credit. Nonetheless, it's disappointing and forgettable.

Photo of stoutman
2.2/5  rDev -32.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Quite disappointed with this beer like the other beer lao. It is just a sweet and malty bland beer with some caramel and just a hint of spices. Quite sweet and sugary. Very little bitterness. Has some of that old lager flavor but for the most part it goes down fairly easy. It’s still drinkable, but far from a great beer.

Photo of flagmantho
3.68/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 330mL bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: medium brown hue, not unlike a nut brown ale or an ESB. Body is clear and the head is a thick finger of frothy light-tan foam with a good lace. Not bad, actually.

Smell: sweet, caramelly malt aroma without much in the way of hops. Perhaps a bit sweet for my taste, but it is clean and free of flaws.

Taste: much like the aroma, it's a sweet, caramel malt-heavy beer. For that, the flavor seems more balanced than the aroma with a light but present bitterness toward the end. There also seems to be a very light but noticeable smokiness in the flavor which is appealing; perhaps they still kiln malt over wood fires in Laos.

Mouthfeel: quite good. Medium-light body with a massive carbonation which yields the creaminess I like. Perhaps not to-style, but it's certainly to my taste.

Overall: a decent and drinkable dark lager. I'm going to award some bonus points here for the light smokiness, which really is a treat here (again, if not to-style).

Photo of matjack85
3.56/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I found both the dark and the regular versions of this beer at the new Binny's store in Bloomingdale, IL for $9.99 a six-pack. First time trying a Laotian beer. 11.2oz brown bottles with no freshness date.

The beer pours a clear reddish/brown color with a big creamy 3-finger light tan head. Long lasting retention and lots of lace - a pretty good looking dark lager.

Roasted malt and sweet caramel aroma.

Taste starts out with a mild sweetness, and then a strange combination of black licorice and a metallic flavor kick in. I'm sort of indifferent about it. Definitely different but not sure if I like it that much. A mild bitterness and touch of lemon are also present.

Light to medium body with moderate carbonation.

This is a decent beer, but nothing exceptional.

Photo of MaximalC
3.38/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a transparent, ruddy color with a generous cream-colored head. Aroma is mildly malty and nondescript. Flavor profile is malty (dark malt) and one-dimensional, but not unpleasant. An easy-to-drink beer with enough flavor to keep you interested, but nothing to write home about.

Photo of shigg85
4.2/5  rDev +28.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I used to buy this all the time at a Thai restaurant on 9th Avenue in Hell's Kitchen, New York City. Matched my tom yum fried rice amazingly well. It is one of the darkest lagers i've seen from Southeast Asia, only comparable to ABC Stout from Singapore (although this beer is much better). The smell is enjoyable with lots of nutty notes (even more than most Guinness sold abroad). But the highest note for this beer (as it should be for any) is the taste. Amazingly smooth yet thick in the way a good dark lager should be, this brew fulfills all of my expectations of what I want when I order a dark beer. Hard to find, but if you can, get a bottle and enjoy it! A great representation for the country of Laos!

Photo of Jimmys
3.04/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

adding a country and a style to my checklist. score. 11.2 oz bottle. not seeing a bottled on date on this rather light brown bottle.

A: a dark, deep reddish hue. however, still very clear. decent head, retention and lacing.

S: a very light toasted caramel aroma. maybe oh-so-slightly fruity from a little bit of hop character? that may be a stretch.

T: drinks light a lager should. clean. a touch of roast. i suppose that is the "dark" quality. nothing too discernible, but nothing notable either.

M: moderate/average carbonation on a medium body.

D: drinkable? yes. desirable? hardly. cool to sample a brew from Laos, but otherwise not really worth seeking.

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Beerlao Dark from Lao Brewery Co.
76 out of 100 based on 128 ratings.