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Beerlao Dark - Lao Brewery Co.

Not Rated.
Beerlao DarkBeerlao Dark

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
76
okay

117 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 117
Reviews: 62
rAvg: 3.28
pDev: 15.85%
Wants: 2
Gots: 1 | 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:
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.

(Beer added by: Jason on 12-31-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 117 | Reviews: 62 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by rickyleepotts:
Photo of rickyleepotts
4.05/5  rDev +23.5%
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.

rickyleepotts, Feb 07, 2013
More User Reviews:
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue VIII:

Tarnished reddish brass color with great clarity, big towering head that clings to the glass quite well. Mild, malty aroma with ghost-like suggestions of licorice root, mint and lemon peel. The nose ends up bready and clean. Light to moderate body with a bitty grainy mouthfeel. Bready malt with a pleasant but light-toasted character, clean on the palate. Hops are very modest with only a mild bitterness. A little husky and lemon in the drying finish.

Very easy to drink; dark in color, but the flavor doesn't reflect that too much other than a slightly toasted tone. A good pick to change things up.

BeerAdvocate, Sep 14, 2010
Photo of generallee
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%

generallee, Jun 09, 2014
Photo of wattoclone
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%

wattoclone, Sep 12, 2012
Photo of virinow
4/5  rDev +22%

virinow, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of chinchill
3.3/5  rDev +0.6%
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.

chinchill, Dec 21, 2012
Photo of CoalPorter
2.83/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Had a bottle poured into a pint glass at a sushi place.

A - dark amber color with a light head that clings well

S - very sweet and bready, with caramel and burnt sugar overtones

T - again very sweet and malty, with a bitter finish and aftertaste that I found unpleasant

M - medium bodied with fair carbonation

D - I wouldn't go back for another.

CoalPorter, Feb 14, 2011
Photo of intoxabroad
3.75/5  rDev +14.3%

intoxabroad, Oct 08, 2012
Photo of Griffith
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%

Griffith, Jan 23, 2014
Photo of tdm168
3.1/5  rDev -5.5%
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.

tdm168, Jun 23, 2012
Photo of NeroFiddled
3.13/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

BeerLao Dark pours a clear dark-chestnut body beneath a short cap of creamy white foam. The fact that the head is so light in contrast to the darkness of the body beneath says something. The head retention is fairly good, and it leaves some partial rings of thin, bubbly lacing as it goes.

In the nose it's fairly malty with a bit of nuttiness and caramel. That carries over into the flavor as well, but it's not nearly as malty or flavorful as you'd expect. It's backed by a harsh, somewhat acidic bitterness that cuts through what malt is there and takes you abruptly to the finish before you've even had a chance to swallow it. Fortunately, a sweet dollop of nutty and caramelish malt remains on the tip of your tongue as the back of your mouth is coated in acidic dryness.

Overall, this is much better than the standard BeerLao, and I guess if I was stranded there I'd go for this.

NeroFiddled, May 13, 2009
Photo of Raligitano
3.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Wow!! It's possible to find a dark beer in in Southeast Asia? That alone thrilled me when I first saw the label "DARK" in a cooler in Vientiane, Laos. The tan and orange-tinted liquid is a pleasure to look at. The foam lingers for a long time but it has a rather sickly grey brackish color instead of clean white.

Ugh, smells like typical SE Asia beer but with a touch more richness. There's a few maple scents that hold promise. I opened this bottle after returning to the States so the airplane altitude pressure may have altered this baby. I remember it smelling far better in Laos...no gag reflex.

Tastes malty and greasy in the mouth. There's flavors of sour maple, nutty pucker and the everpresent Asian additive, ricericerice...think I should've let this one warm up more outside the fridge. Feels light and airy. It leaves a distinct burn on the finish and has high carbonation.

This is a dark beer that goes down easy in hot weather by the Mekong River. I did this review after finishing a delicious beerfest here in St. Louis, so it faired poorly compared to what I'd been drinking. The truth is it's a damn good brew for the part of the world it's from. You're lucky to find any other commercially produced beer in Asia that's not just headache-inducing formaldahyde-brewed piss. Plus it's cheap... Cheers Communist Comarades!

Raligitano, Oct 08, 2008
Photo of chrishiker1409
4.25/5  rDev +29.6%

chrishiker1409, Jun 15, 2013
Photo of GRG1313
2.83/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours dark brown with a thick white head that dissipates quickly.

Bretanomyces nose (which I expect is not intentional) with an underlying vegetal character that is not unpleasant and which turns to burnt carmel when in the glass a few minutes.

Thin mouthfeel that thickens and improves. Flavors of burnt carmel and light coffee with a high acid character and a malty fruit mid palate and goes to coffee and cooked fruit in the back palate and initial finish.

Finish then "finishes" with long pleasant malt and hops. End palate and finish is strength of this beer. Not what I would call "drink" friendly.

GRG1313, Jun 28, 2009
Photo of lzepplin01
2.75/5  rDev -16.2%

lzepplin01, May 15, 2014
Photo of tone77
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 11.2 oz. bottle. Has a dark brown color with a small head. Smell is of caramel and malts. Taste is good, a bit nutty, malts are there as well as a hint of caramel. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and has good drinkability. Overall this is a good quality brew.

tone77, Oct 02, 2010
Photo of weezyfart
3.48/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark, opaque and typically dunkel in apppearance. I love the malty aromas with roasted coffee bean and toffee that isn't too overbearing. It's just right. The taste is a liitle bit of a letdown unfortunately. I mean, again, it tastes like a usual dunkel beer from Germany, but I feel that it is lacking character considering I've never had a beer from Laos before and was hoping for some ingenuity. I don't consider rice additives ingenuity by the way. The finish has enough bitters to keep me reaching for my glass, though the length is slightly short.

weezyfart, Nov 12, 2008
Photo of bonbini26
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%

bonbini26, Jan 12, 2012
Photo of LJWalker
3/5  rDev -8.5%

LJWalker, Nov 11, 2012
Photo of matjack85
3.55/5  rDev +8.2%
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.

matjack85, Mar 24, 2012
Photo of thekanna
3.48/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear chestnut brown with about 2 fingers of white head.

S: Sweet malts and adjunct grains with a bit of clove; maybe a little anise?

T/M: Great honey sweetness and malts; crisp, effervescent and enjoyable. Slightly medicinal aftertaste.

D: Decent, and I can see it complementing Laotian food well by providing respite from the strong flavors.

thekanna, Jul 04, 2010
Photo of buschbeer
2.95/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I poured into a pint glass to a half inch of head. It is a dark rust color. It has a kind of skunky import smell with a side of roasted malt. The taste is mainly of roasted malt. It tastes better than Beerlao because of the malt. It's not that bad of tasting beer. It has an almost cocoa taste to it. It is an average beer. I could probably session it if I had to, but let's hope it doesn't come to that.

Can chen!

buschbeer, Mar 07, 2010
Photo of metter98
3.13/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer poured clear amber in color with a finger high off white head that has good retention properties. A moderate amount of carbonation is visible.
S: There are faint aromas of caramel and nutty malts in the nose, which is rather sweet.
T: The taste has a mix of light amounts of sweetness and bitterness. There are some notes of caramel and nuts in the flavors.
M: It feels light-bodied and a bit watery on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a bit of dryness perceptible in the finish.
D: It's quite drinkable for a dark beer and is particularly suited for drinking during the summer months (or Southeast Asian climate).

metter98, Jul 31, 2010
Photo of TeamUgly
3.25/5  rDev -0.9%

TeamUgly, Nov 06, 2012
Photo of patre_tim
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%

patre_tim, Jun 23, 2014
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Beerlao Dark from Lao Brewery Co.
76 out of 100 based on 117 ratings.