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

Not Rated.
The Raven Special LagerThe Raven Special Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
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 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 Thorpe429
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served from the bottle into a taster glass.

Pours a clear golden color with a nice white head and just a touch of lacing on the edges. The nose has a bit of light grain, faint hops, and just a touch of sweetness. The flavor is a really nice balance between light malt and very mild sweetness. Just a touch of grain flavor as well. Light body with good carbonation and just a bit of chewiness. Altogether, really a nice lager.

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 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 NeroFiddled
3.85/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is contract brewed at the Clipper City Brewing Company in Baltimore. It pours a clear, deep-amber body with an orange cast. Steadily rising bubbles can clearly be seen adding to the foamy white cap that holds well and maintains a thin surface covering throughout the first half of the glass. The nose delivers a sweetish caramel malt that's infused with lightly floral hops. The body is medium and it's smooth in the mouth with a very fine, moderate carbonation that gently tingles the tongue. The flavor offers a rich, sweetish malt that indicates the use of Munich, and perhap crystal, malts. It's balanced by a firm bitterness and infused with lightly floral hops; and finishes soft and smooth with some residual malt and a light touch of hop flavor.

Photo of jlindros
3.5/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clea amber color with light head.

Nose has some toasty malts, light lager fruits, doesn't get much of a crisp lager aroma, slightest hint of syrup.

Taste brings more toasty malts, light amber malt flavors, sweet lager, light reddish copper malts, light dme, hint of lager fruit like flavor, just a slight metallic taste.

Mouth is fairly lighter bodied, decent carb.

Overall not bad, I was expecting worse, just a slight metallic flavor otherwise no real off flavors but no crisp or clean lager flavors either.

Photo of Slatetank
3.5/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this on tap at Federal Taphouse in Lancaster PA, served chilled in a shaker pint.

The color is golden with a good clarity and white cap with tiny bead.
the aroma has a malty sweet ester with light yeast breadiness and mild nutty accent. The feel is good with creamy effect from carbonation with mild sweetness and light toasted texture.

The taste is good with clean overall flavor with bready and mild malt with toastiness in the taste and a mild yeast taste which has a gentle fruitiness and slight hop spice adds to the taste. Overall this is a good lager, but not overly complex -pretty average for the style w/ good drinkabliity.

Photo of Rifugium
3.5/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: at Philly Craft Beer Fest '07

Poured a clear burnt umber with a small off-white head that dissipated quickly. Grains and toasted malts in the aroma. Toasty malts in the taste, grainy, woody, with some caramel sweetness. Some hop bitterness comes in towards the end, leaving a dry and somewhat bland aftertaste. Still an overall ok brew; light-medium mouthfeel, and pretty drinkable. Though after the fest, I never saw the stuff again.

Photo of drabmuh
3.59/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a shaker pint. Beer is yellow and clear. Not much head carbonation is moderate with large bubbles and there is no lacing on the glass.

Aroma is slightly grainy and sweet, like vienna malt. Smells fine.

Highly drinkable, medium bodied beer. Overall its really nice, sweet slightly and finishes nice. I think its OK.

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 Gavage
3.44/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Orange in color with a short 1/2" head that quickly disappeared to a surface coating. The aroma is malty and full of caramel. The taste was simple and soft on the tongue - malt, caramel, hints of orange, along with a mellow bitterness. Carbonation levels were a bit weak.

Mouthfeel was smooth with a light crispness at the start and finish. The caramel tones lingered softly on the tongue. Drinkability is decent. Not a beer to go searching for, but not a bad offering at a bar that only has other macros.

Photo of tempest
3.51/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single from the fridge at Abe's Six-Pack Shop.

For starters, and I think this is what makes the difference between average and good pale lagers, there's absolutely nothing offensive about this beer. It reminded me of a blander version of Full Sail's Session. The aroma is faint, but it's the same as the taste with smooth, sweet bready malts with just the slightest toasted note. No hops, just a balanced lager. We're talking throw-back lager here. Great for the style.

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 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 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 tgbljb
4.3/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a crystal clear medium copper color with modest slightly off-white puffy head. Nice lacing as the head slowly fell to a thin ring.Smell is a pleasant combination of maltiness and sweet fruit. Taste has a frim malty character with a nice balancing amount of hops. Full creamy mouthfeel. Very drinkable. An excellent macro lager. This is what they should all taste like.

Photo of msubulldog25
3.3/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A bonus bottle from fine BA drabmuh; 12 oz. & brown, poured to a pint glass.

Label: An awkwardly mediocre drawing of a raven perched upon Poe's tombstone against a buttery-pale backdrop. Nice Poe-on-red bottlecap... a keeper.
"The Taste is Poetic".
We shall see...

A: Golden-straw with more than a hint of orange. So close to being clear, it's painful to find the scantest suspended dust. Modest carbonation; what there is moves slowly, drunkenly. Starts with a decent 1/2 finger of whitish foam; head breaks down quickly to a splotchy film, slight ring, fragmented lace.

S: Sweet aroma, mild fruit and tons of malty sugars. Doesn't smell all that special, but does smell strongly of 'nothing special'. Worthy of a '3.5'? Ah, sure it is...

T: Not a bad taste at all. Very malty, sugar sweet and caramel-laden... with fruity notes of apple and pear abounding. Modest spiciness, very little notable hops. Skews waaay toward the malty ('malt liquor'-tasting) side.

M: Kinda oily. No REALLY oily, a viscous and off-putting sort of slickness. No carbonation prickle at all, just silky yet dull all at once. Light-medium body, with a lasting starchy/gummy stickiness.

D: 'Average' about sums it up... nothing to bring you back. Despite flaws, not a bad-tasting beer (at least for a malt-lover like me), but, well, why? Not to rule things out, but to 'quoth the Raven': Nevermore.

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 GCBrewingCo
3.38/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured into the glass very slightly hazy golden amber with an off-white and frothy head which rose tall and fell slowly to lace the glass.

The aroma was lightly malty with a slight metallic hop aroma.

The flavor was slightly sweet and malty with a very low bittering and more slight metallic hops. The flavor was lightly fruity.

The finish was even with just a light fruitiness lasting later in the finish. The body was medium. Not a bad beer, but just rather ordinary. The aroma and flavor were slightly metallic, but not too much so as to detract.

12 ounce bottle. "The Taste is Poetic" label and an Edgar Allen Poe bottlecap.

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 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 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 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 daliandragon
3.53/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a sixer yesterday at Trader Joe's in Tyson's Corner, Virginia. The packaging, especially the bottlecaps, are original and fun, especially if you're a fan of the author.

Pours an orange tinted golden colorwith a nice two fingers of snow white head that lasts maybe forty five sconds. Nose is sweet and heavily malty with a biscuity tone.

The taste is similar to the smell, featuring a heavy bread texture and a sweet malty finish. The texture is even and full bodied for a lager. The aftertaste has a surprisingly strong touch of alcohol for a 5.5 abv but it's not overpowering.

I don't love this beer but for a run of the mill lager it's quite good and distinct. I'm glad the brewery didn't sully the name of such a famous author (and drinker) with a crap beer. Worth a shot.

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