Sleeman Original Dark (50*) - Sleeman Breweries Ltd.
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Ratings: 92 | Reviews: 77 | Display Reviews Only:
3.06/5 rDev +4.4%
341 mL bottle from a six-pack picked up at TBS; bottled Nov. 28 2013 and now labelled 'Sleeman Dark/Rousse', still at 5.5%. I believe this is the last major Sleeman brand for me to review - other than the Light, mostly because I don't want to pay for six servings of light beer. Served well-chilled.
Pours a clear, ruby-bronze colour, generating about one finger's worth of dense, creamy, off-white head. It recedes steadily over the next minute or three, soon settling into a thin film and narrow collar; not much in the way of lace. The aroma is really reminding me of their honey brown lager, albeit without that brew's cloying sweetness - bready malts, toasted grains, light caramel sweetness and a faint whiff of grassy earth combine to form an agreeable, if unimaginative amber ale bouquet.
The same theme carries over into the flavour profile. Toasted bread and grainy malts provide much of the flavour, with a light caramel sweetness and raisin fruitiness underpinning this. It finishes on the dry side, with a touch of leafy English-style hops, but the aftertaste does not linger long. Light-bodied and watery, with relatively strong carbonation for the style (though it's about what I'd expect from a crafty macro). An easy-drinking, non-challenging, shrug-worthy amber.
Final Grade: 3.06, a C+. I've had a few bottles of Sleeman Original Dark over the past weekend and I have become increasingly less impressed with each serving. Honey Brown fans will probably find this to be an acceptable offering, as it is considerably more balanced with a dryer finish thanks to the hop bill. While this is a passable amber that I could see myself selecting again, I'd probably stick with their Fine Porter over this one - neither one is a masterpiece, but the porter still comes together more completely than this middling offering, IMO.
02-18-2014 16:16:16 | More by thehyperduck
2.79/5 rDev -4.8%
341ml Bottle from Marche Omni QC for $2
Appearance - Clear brownish red colour with an average size beige coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing and there is some fairly decent lacing. The head lasted for around 2-3 minutes before it was gone.
Smell - Malts, caramel, grains
Taste & Mouth - There is an above average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel, and grass. There is some very light chocolate and some metallic notes.
Overall - One of the better sleeman beers, but unfortunately that isn't saying much. Not something I'd suggest buying.
08-21-2013 01:30:04 | More by spinrsx
3.13/5 rDev +6.8%
A - pours a ruby red with a finger of head with solid retention and sporadic lacing.
S - musty cardboard, spicy notes with pepper notes, and hints of buttered bread
T - the musty toasted bread dominates, hints of caramel, peppery spice, some bitter leafy notes linger
M - medium bodied, smooth and a tad dry on the finish
O - a tasty lighter flavored dark ale. An easy introduction to the style though the musty flavours are a bit of a turnoff. Worth a try, but nothing special.
05-18-2012 00:12:43 | More by andrenaline
2.55/5 rDev -13%
A bottle of the Canadian version smuggled over the border past the Mounties from by a co-worker...
A - Slightly more than a fingers worth of slightly rocky fairly standard off-white colored head... Minimal retention gives way to a full veil of lace and thin collar... The color is a warm medium brown... Fully translucent... A good bit of moderate to quick paced carbonation throughout...
S - Loaded with pale malts and caramel... Some cereal and grain notes... Slightly nutty... Pleasant, but quite subdued...
T - Pale malts out the wazoo... Toffee... Caramel... Nutty... An odd slightly off putting medicinal finish...
M - On the lighter side of medium bodied... Light carbonation... Slightly sleek... A slightly chalky burnt finish...
D - A bit underwhelming... No terrible, but not something I would recommend nor seek out for myself in the future...
04-19-2012 01:52:46 | More by philbe311
3.73/5 rDev +27.3%
Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine June 2007.
Old-school Amber Ale here. In Canada, it's just labeled "Original Dark"; but us Yanks get the long, fancy name with the number in it. Go figure.
The carbonation isn't shy here, giving four fingers of off-white head that leaves a soap-like sticky lace down the glass. It's amber, and it's dark, so the name doesn't lie; clarity is perfect as well. Clean aroma of sweet malt and subtle leafy hops. It's as smooth as it is crisp, with a nice moderate body. Dry malt flavor starts things off, bready with a hint of toasted husk and sweet caramel in the back. Woody and leafy hops grace the beer with a mild bitterness and a long-lingering flavor. Kiss of fruitiness in the middle, with a quick showing of alcohol in the semi-dry finish.
Beer geeks may deem this beer as pedestrian, but regardless of what they think, this is a simple yet very drinkable ale with no evident flaws. A meat pie with a flaky, buttery crust will do just fine with this.
09-27-2010 18:56:31 | More by BeerAdvocate
2.75/5 rDev -6.1%
341ml bottle from my buddy's fridge. Pours a clear copper orange with one finger of yellowish, off-white foam that vanishes midway through the beer. Smell and taste are sweetish caramel, toasty malts, sour fruit (plum?), spoiled apples, muted earthiness, some metallic notes, and a grassy, leafy hop bitterness, very restrained. As with all Sleeman beers, there's a cloying astringency on the palate, but the flavour improves as the beer warms, becoming fruitier and sweeter in a pleasant way. Mouthfeel has more body than you'd expect for a macro, medium and creamy, soft carbonation, dry finish with a tinny, mineral-like aftertaste. Inoffensive, but not something I'd reach for again.
07-24-2010 20:01:43 | More by cratez
2.15/5 rDev -26.6%
Bottle at the grad club at University of Western Ontario- Dark amber base, with an off white head that fizzes away. Aromas of corn, grains, raisin bran? Skunky too. Sweet malt flavour base, with mild bitterness. Mild bitter finish. Not good, but not bad.
11-05-2009 15:18:19 | More by mrmanning
3.43/5 rDev +17.1%
Light brown or dark amber in color when poured into a pint glass. Light head and no nose that I am able to detect. Somewhat heavy attack with a thick and creamy mouthfeel. The flavor seems to match the mouthfeel as it is thick and creamy as well. There is a tiny bite of hops late in the flavor and an interesting bite at the finish. The flavor lingers in the mouth but in a pleasant and inconspicuous way. This beer is okay, but I would have to say that I won't really remember it in the long run.
04-23-2009 14:25:18 | More by Ragingbull
3.15/5 rDev +7.5%
A: Pours a clear dark cranberry color with a small off white head.
S: Big sweet caramel nose and palate.
T: An okay amber but a tad sweet malt wise and seems a tad unbalanced as the hops were difficult to detect. Theres a slight spicy nuttiness and lemony hints in the end. Overall I would say this is moderate flavor.
M: Theres some fizziness from the carbonation present in the mouthful, which is very sweet from caramel.
D: ave. drinkability at best and fails to get noticed.
12-12-2008 01:24:25 | More by beerthulhu
3.48/5 rDev +18.8%
Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a tumbler glass.
Appearance: Poured a rocky tan head. The beer was ruby brown in appearance. Much darker than I expected an amber ale to pour. It left a light lacing.
Smell: Smelled like a sweet brown ale when first poured.
Taste: Well balanced flavor of malt and hops. Neither the malt nor hops takes center-stage in this beer. The taste of caramel and darker malts.
09-20-2008 21:59:13 | More by BierFan
Sleeman Original Dark (50*) from Sleeman Breweries Ltd.
70 out of 100 based on 92 ratings.