The Raven Special Lager - B.W. Beer Works USA

Not Rated.
The Raven Special LagerThe Raven Special Lager

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BA SCORE
78
okay

166 Ratings
THE BROS
73
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 166
Reviews: 72
rAvg: 3.38
pDev: 14.5%
Wants: 6
Gots: 18 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
B.W. Beer Works USA visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
Vienna Lager |  5.25% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: RBorsato on 04-28-2003

The Raven Special Lager is a perfect balanced lager beer that goes well with any kind of food, but particularly with spicy food or when you just want to sit down and enjoy a beer with friends. With a shot of Woodford Reserve chased with chilled Raven is a near perfect combination. The rich golden colored beer is an exceptionally smooth Southern German lager, somewhat malty but well balanced between the hops and malt. Experiencing the clean finish and pleasant lingering aftertaste of The Raven Special Lager, one can truly say that The Taste Is Poetic.

18 IBU
View: Beers (6) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 166 | Reviews: 72
Photo of alleykatking
1.68/5  rDev -50.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Poured from 12oz bottle.

A- Pours a golden orange with hints of amberish hues. Half finger white head shows poor retention. Spotty lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Very grainy in the front of the beer. Light fried veggie aroma to this beer. Some grassy hops in the backend with light alcohol also lingering around in the nose. Most dominate smell is fried veggies and grain though.

T- Very grainy upfront with a horrid blast of fried veggies. This overtakes the beer for at least the front half of it. This dies down a little bit showcasing a faint grassy hop before taking lead flavor toward the ending with a light metallic flavor and alcohol. A horrid flavor overall.

M- Light mouthfeel. Carbonation is crisp and a little light for the beer I think. Fried veggies and grain left on the palate. Aftertaste is light alcohol and grain. Flavors were not anywhere close to being balanced. This has a metallic off flavor that doesn't help with the flavor to it. Also the fried veggie flavor really is a huge off flavor as it seems to be the showcased flavor. Light alcohol drying on the palate.

O- This beer should be called "Never more". I think this beer has to be older which is why I am not digging it. The ABV is low to have a great many pints of this but then again why would you if this is how it was suppose to taste. Oh well you win some and lose some.

Photo of Jimmys
2.55/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A: deep gold, a little bit of orange hue as well. white bubbly head diminishes to a thin rim. large carbonation bubbles can be seen. clear.

S: a minor fruitiness. maybe green apple. the sweetness slightly resembles candy corn. struggling to find a hop component.

T: a really subtle graininess. the malt actually seems less obvious here than in the nose. a little similar to cooked white rice.

M: super light body with a pretty hard carbonation.

D: pretty boring beer, fitting right in with the style. probably has one of the coolest bottle caps with a pic of edgar allen poe on it.

Photo of mempath
2.58/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

cool bottle! looks ok when poured. typical euro pale lager...nose is too close to the bad adjunct world...taste is a bit sweet...malty with not enough hop balance. flows down the gullet fine. past the palate...nothing special. actually less. i prefer the gusto Schlitz. or, speaking of baltimore, Natty Boh...

Photo of Arithmeticus
2.64/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured chilled in ale glass in Rollingside tavern.

A: nice dark orange, little head, no lacing; relatively clear
S: malty, not much else going on
T: metallic aftertaste, almost a Euro-strong, but without the ABV; barley is of a darker roast that I would have expected.

Photo of ThisWangsChung
2.88/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear amber color - this is darker than I anticipated. The head is one fingers high, and barely off-white in shading. Not much in the way of either retention or lacing.

S: The primary notes are toasted malts and a hint of noble hops. Some fleeting caramel sweetness also invades the nose ever-so-slightly. Pretty basic, but not bad.

T: Plenty of caramel and toffee to start, which turns slightly nutty and toasty near the middle...and also slightly metallic on the finish. Faint hoppy hints also appear on the back end; I want more of this to appear. If nothing else, the flavors seem to improve slightly as the carbonation slows down.

M: This has too much of a rough, coarse feel for me going down. The high carbonation is welcoming, but the way it cuts through the otherwise sweet texture isn't. Should be more drinkable, as well.

O: This should be reclassified as an amber, or perhaps even a Vienna lager. At the very least, it's an acceptably mediocre amber/Vienna. Not bad, but I don't see much reason to pick this up over SA Boston Lager, which is cleaner, crisper, easier to drink, and available everywhere.

Photo of tehawful
2.97/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear, light-amber body with little head. Smells of grain and a bit of sweet malt. Some grassy hop tones come across as well. A somewhat disappointing start considering the Poe branding.

Heavy grain taste, with a small hint of corn. Finishes dry with some bitter grassy hops. Both the initial taste and the finish stop before they really get a chance to develop. The body is light enough, and carbonation sticks out a bit at the end.

All in all, I was a little disappointed with The Raven. Perhaps living near Baltimore I hoped that they would do more of a service to Edgar Allan Poe. Certainly a drinkable lager, but nothing really sticks out.

Photo of mralphabet
2.97/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle purchased at The Raven in Virginia Beach

A: Golden amber in color, less than a fingers worth of head, that disappears very quickly... no lacing.

S: Slight sweet smell, little malty (biscuit like)... touch of adjunct.

T: Just like the smell malty biscuit taste, little sweet but not over bearing.... Just a light touch of dry hops at the finish. Pretty normal, nothing really different from most EPL...

M: Carbonation is sharp at first, but settles down as it warms up. Thin to Mid bodied... Good for the style

D: Very refreshing little beer, nicely balanced. Could be a good session beer, but nothing really grabs you and makes it memorable...

I had to have it because of the Poe beer cap... Nice touch.

Photo of JamieDuncan
2.98/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Wish I would have checked reviews before buying

Photo of ckollias
3/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Enjoyed this 12oz bottle out of a Beligan Tulip glass.

A: Pours a dark copper hue with a white, 2-finger, frothy head that quickly dissipates leaving a good trail and solid lace.

S: Biscuity malt aroma with a slight caramel scent.

T: Similar to the smell there is a biscuity malt flavor with an overall sweetness that finishes sort of dry.

M: Medium body and medium carbonation.

O: Just a typical lager – nothing I would grab again.

Photo of johnyeast
3/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A clear golden in color with no real head. No real smell. Very neutral in taste. Not a bad beer, just nothing that exciting. Easy drinking. I don't know that I would have it again, for I know many more lagers that have more taste. This is well balanced and no real negatives to this beer.

Photo of clayrock81
3.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Is this just a microbeer in Balty, or is it actually made only for The Raven in Va Beach? That's how that restaurant sells the beer (at least on the menu). A dark orange, seethru body with one finger head that died quickyl. A slightly hoppy smell with some citric and flower notes, along with hints of sweet malt. A bit of malt taste along with light floral hops in the taste, mixed OK and rather faint. Has some crispness in the medium body too, like sour apple, and a semi-dry backbite. Tasted like any other Euro macro lager, maybe a bit better, and when I'm at the Raven again I'll stick to their "world famous" mudslide.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.08/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

If only I'd brought an extra bottle or two of this home with me for when I was watching the Super Bowl or John Cusack's performance in The Raven... Regardless, this stuff pours a clear pale sunset brass topped by a finger of lightly off-white foam. The nose comprises mild biscuit and very light flowers. I think I get some hard water, but that may be from the glass (my apartment's water is harder than bricks). The taste brings in more of the same, along with a few drops of honey-like sweetness peeking through from time to time. The body straddles the line between hefty light and light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a sorta/kinda drying finish. Overall, a nice, if nondescript, little beer, nothing worth sneezing at, and nothing bad enough to wipe your nose on. Worth a go, at least.

Photo of brentk56
3.08/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a clear dark golden color with a frothy head that settles quickly and doesn't lace the glass

Smell: Very little aroma - just a slightly bready, slightly sweet smell

Taste: Starts with a bready flavor that is a tinge sweet and a tinge bitter but never really develops beyond that

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Inoffensive is perhaps the best that can be said; slightly sweet and easy to drink but not worth seeking out

Photo of beerthulhu
3.12/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured a hazy golden amber with a thin white head.

S: a noticeable malt sweetness. The nose was soft with sweet grains and a light noble flowery hop presence.

T: The flavor was sweet malt, bready, and some toasted malt. Overall the flavor was very clean per style.

M: fell a little short and was a touch watery, but very smooth texture wise on the tongue with a crisp finish.

D: Ones enough, a good tweener (intro) beer into the micro world, but really falls short in satisfying the more experienced palate per style.

Photo of matty
3.13/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Orange colored lager with a head that fades to nothing very quickly.Smell is sweet and citrusy,taste is citrus and malt.I can't really say if I would recommend this or not,there is nothing that springs out at you that would make me want to try another.Incredibly average lager!!

Photo of RBorsato
3.16/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Medium gold color with a beige head, good carbonation, and decent lace. Moderate malt aroma. Malty flavor is slightly grainy and slightly sweet. Medium bodied.

I think this is closest to a Dortmunder Export...

Not a bad brew to try but one I've tried a few different times and it's never really caught on. Not one I'd buy but also not one I'd turn down.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.17/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine March 2007

Poetic themes surround this beer; Edgar Allen Poe and The Raven to be exact. We're always wary when a specific theme is slapped on a beer. Is it a dedication or is some- one just trying to cash in? We'll let quality dictate this one.

Quick to foam and just as quick to dissipate into a thin ring of lace; poor head-retention for this Lager, though the clarity is fine. Hints of malty caramel and light floral and herbal hops in the aroma; a relatively clean nose. Creamy, slick mouthfeel, with a moderate body. Crispness struggles, but then just bows out. Bready to start, with a touch of caramel and toasted grain. A small spike of hop bitterness balances this beer out well. Semi-clean aftertaste is on the dry side.

Just a basic, no-frills Lager here, but easy to drink. We expected more from the head and mouthfeel, both of which suffered all around, but balance and con- sistent flavor made up for that. Not a bad pick if you're into middle-of-the-road Lagers. For the pairing, throw this one at a pulled-pork sandwich with pickles and slaw.

Photo of tatoodkelt
3.18/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Consumed 3/13/2010- from notes.

12oz brown bottle as pictured poured into a shaker glass.

A- A very clear, brassy color topped off with a soapy white head about one finger thick. Eventually settled to a patchy skim. Steady carbiniation bubbles.

S- Not much other than sweet malt and a faint grassy/metallic note.

T- The same grassy sweetness as the smell but with a little hop presence at the end.

M- Light to medium bodied and crisp. Not too much tingle from the carbination.

D- I could see this being a session beer if nothing else was available.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.2/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

On tap at Kings Row Gastropub in Pasadena, CA.

Pours a clear orange with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. No lacing on the drink down. Smell is of malt, spice, and scented baby wipe aromas. Taste is much the same with malt and spice flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an above average beer with an odd smell but the taste is decent enough.

Photo of kdog630
3.23/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bought for the Poe bottlecaps. Poured a rich golden color with a decent head. Left lacing throughout the glass.

The aroma was average for a lager. Malty with hint of European hops. The flavor was also of a golden malt. Richer than the macros, with a decent mouthfeel.

I'd drink it again but not right away. Could be a adequate lawnmower beer.

Photo of Brooke1
3.23/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Huge Edgar Allan Poe fan so tried the beer, overall I was satisfied but not wowed. Definitely comparable to Stella Artois.Well balanced beer but lacks creativeness. Nothing stands out to me... Nice label! If you like the poem you should at least try the beer!

Photo of BeerSox
3.28/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into pilsner glass.

Crystal clear honey amber hue with a thin off white head that settles to a rim along the glass.

Light musty malts with a little bit of caramel. Very sweet.

The flavor is similar to the aroma, but with a little bit of flavor and bitterness from the hops. Medium bodied with good carbonation.

A decent lager, nothing special but good if you're looking for something quaffable.

Photo of ThePaintedGrey
3.28/5  rDev -3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12oz bottle poured into pilsener glass.

A: Pours a dark golden color. Nice clarity throughout. Lackluster white head eventually fades down to almost nothing. Little to no lacing left behind.

S:Not much to the nose on this one, that I could pick up. Slightly bready with some grains. Light hints of sweetness and flowery hops.

T: The taste matches the nose pretty well, except the sweetness is a bit more profound throughout. A light spark of hop bitterness in the finish to balance out that initial sweetness. The most surprising factor here is that this beer actually warms up gracefully and doesn't become undrinkable like other lagers.

M: Crisp and clean with a decent, well-rounded carbonation. Relatively average in this department and overall quite drinkable.

O: This is essentially a run-of-the-mill lager. While it's nothing special, I will admit that this one boasts more flavor and goes down easier than most of the mass-produced lagers. For me, this is nothing more than something I'd bring a six-pack or two to a party full of people that don't really go for the crafts. It's nothing I'd recommend to anyone unless they were looking for a decent replacement for the mass-produced lagers and light beers.

Photo of jwc215
3.3/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours slightly hazed amber with a thin head that soome becomes a thin patch that disappears, but briefly reappears with gentle swirling.

The smell if of soft caramel - some graininess - sweet.

The taste is of sweet graininess and light caramel. A late touch of woody, (earthy?) continental-type hops give it some balance, though it remains malty sweet, esp. in the rather abrupt finish.

It's light bodied - a bit watery. Some sweetness lingers.

Not a bad choice for an easy-drinking, sweeter, "no-brainer" beer, but nothing exciting or memorable by any means, IMO.

Photo of BarrelO
3.3/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Light amber body. A rather modest head.

S: Mostly hops, a bit of bready malt.

T: Exceedingly bland. There's really nothing here worth describing it in much detail. The best I can do is liken it to a watered-down Sam Adams.

M: Decently light and crisp.

D: I view this as the Dave Matthews Band of beers: competent but boring. I wouldn't be upset if I never drank it again for the rest of my life, but I wouldn't have a problem drinking it if I went somewhere where it was the only beer available.

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The Raven Special Lager from B.W. Beer Works USA
78 out of 100 based on 166 ratings.