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McSorley's Irish Black Lager - Pabst Brewing Company

Not Rated.
McSorley's Irish Black LagerMcSorley's Irish Black Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

326 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 326
Reviews: 163
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: 14.29%
Wants: 11
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Pabst Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: oriolesfan4 on 01-29-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 326 | Reviews: 163 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Bung
4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. A very dark brown pour, limited off white head. Some chocolate and roast, malt and earthy peat. Good smooth light/med. lager body. Taste has some chocolate and roasted tones. Has that pronounced lager yeast. Good amount of carbonation. Clean slight roast/bitter finish. A pretty darn good drinker. Euro-dark lager, not sure what that is, but I like this one.

Bung, Jul 22, 2009
Photo of generallee
4.28/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: The body has a dark brownish color with a slight reddish hue. There is some visible carbonation that flows up to the tall tan head. The head had very good retention and lacing.

Smell: There is a lightly roasted character and sweet malted barley with just a hint of hops.

Taste/Mouth: The flavor has some slight roasted coffee notes with sweet bready and roasted malt notes. Hop flavor is light and brings some mineral/leafy notes to the finish. The finish is rather clean with roasted flavors and hop bitterness fading quickly. The palate is a smooth medium body with just the right amount of carbonation to help clean the palate.

Notes: Overall this is a very enjoyable and very drinkable black lager.

generallee, Jul 18, 2009
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
3.75/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This one is dark brown and looks alot like rootbeer. A substantial, thick mocha colored head with slow dissipation and leaves a small amount of left-over lacy.

Roastie and nutty with caramel in the malt with dry and green herbs. The caramel-like sweetness is pretty up-front in the malt.

The flavor of the malt is more roastie than the aroma with a nice herbal hop flavor to round it out. good balance, with the malt making the most of it and a smooth feel with a dry finish. subtle notes of mild chocolate and tyme ride in at the end. The yeast plays a big role with earthy and sour notes like a decent lager.

Not bad stuff.

GratefulBeerGuy, Jul 09, 2009
Photo of beerthulhu
3.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: From the bottle appeared reddish chocolate, while in the glass was a flat black with frumpy and frothy medium sandstone colored head that quickly dissipated.

S: The nose yielded soft accents of freshly roasted barley with light hints of wet charred wood. The overall strength was light, clean and smooth and well suited per style.

T: The flavor was full with light roasted offering of coffee beans. Fresh ripe and juicy plums along with a light earthy bitterness are also well noted. Sweet raisins deliver a touch of sweetness while wet coffee grounds appear on the finish. Pretty good substance wise, and smooth.

M: Creamy and slick texture, with a medium body and playful and edgy feel from the carbonation. Nice fullness per style.

D: Enjoyable for a few, fairly smooth going down with a fullness that can be appreciated without weighing you down.

beerthulhu, Jun 25, 2009
Photo of erosier
3.65/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Pours a deep brown color that is still transparent with a medium sized and light bodied off white colored head that laces the glass nicely on the way down.
S: Smells of deep roasted malts, lightly toasted ones, some honey and hops.
T: Similar to the aroma, it has a lighter body than I expected with a lot of light toasted malts, deeper roasted ones, and some honey and caramel flavors right before a slight hop taste.
M: Very crisp, light bodied, refreshing, perfect amount of carbonation.
D: Very drinkable, I liked it, good lager.

erosier, Jun 23, 2009
Photo of dasenebler
3.55/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Very dark, but not very viscous. Soda-like pour, head dissipates quickly. Aroma of peaty malts and roast.

Flavor is nice. Not fantastic or full-bodied, but enough character with the roastiness, peaty malt and potent tanginess to keep me interested for the drink. Not too bitter, but definitely dry rather than sweet and malty. Tart hops. Carbonation was a little high for me, and the mouthfeel wasn't too persuasive. Overall, pretty good and very drinkable for the flavors it packs. Though, I could do without the hoaky McSorley's Ale House history and other gimmickry suggested by the label. Come on, it's a contract brew. But a good beer nonetheless.

dasenebler, Jun 07, 2009
Photo of dsr0116
4.22/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I think this is an exceptional find for any Irish stout lover. The overall characteristics are very similar to the Guinness 250 Anniversary edition brew. This has the same sourness that Guinness is synonymous with (especially the foreign or extra stout strains). While not as complex as Guinness foreign stout, it seems very similar to Guinness 250 edition. It has slightly more mouthfeel and slightly less maltiness (due to it being a black lager to be sure). If you find it cheaper then Guinness at your market, then this is a definite buy. I'm comparing this to Guinness simply because it seems to emulate it so much: it has the same basic acidity and maltiness of the recent 250 variety (IE it has more flavor then the Guinness draught versions but it's not as heavy as the "foreign stout" versions). The main thing that I like about this beer over other Irish ales is it seems to have the same Brettanomyces strains of sourness that I like in Guinness. This is the first time I've had a McSorley's, and from what I've gleened, this is a relatively new contract from Lion brewery. Will be interesting to see if this keeps going: I think it's good for what it is: a lighter Guinness foriegn stout.

dsr0116, Jun 07, 2009
Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a dark brown color with a thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of honey, caramel, roasted malts and a touch of hops.

T: The taste is sweet up front with flavors of honey, chocolate, coffee and caramel, also a touch of smokiness. The malt character is on the thin side despite the sweetness. The hops presence is mild but provides a little balance. The after-taste is sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Flavorful, goes down easy, not too filling, mild kick, decent representation of style, this is a beer that's ok to drink for a while if you want a darker beer that isn't too heavy, but it's not something that I would choose unless the selection were limited.

TheManiacalOne, May 20, 2009
Photo of allergictomacros
3.38/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Not sure exactly what makes this Irish... It's pretty dark though - I see bare hints of red through my weizen glass. Head is moderate and drops quickly to a thin covering sheet. Nose isn't strong - coffee and some tobacco. Flavour is fairly smooth, somewhat acidic, a little bit fruity with a decent hop. Takes a while but burnt and coffee flavours appear as well. Dry with a moderate mouthfeel and a medium carbonation. Pretty smooth and NOT toasty for such a dark beer. FWIW though, easy drinking with some good balanced flavours and pretty accessible for beginners.

allergictomacros, May 17, 2009
Photo of NeroFiddled
3.93/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Mc Sorley's Irish Black Lager displays a beautiful dark mahogany-brown body beneath a short head of frothy tan. Unfortunately the head retention and lacing are fairly limited.

The nose offers up notes of dark chocolate, a very soft roastiness, and hints of sweetish malt.

The flavor is mainly deeply-caramelish and gently sugary. Some cocoa-ish notes appear along with some nuttiness, but the chocolate suggested by the nose is simply not found except for a suggestion of it in the finish. The roastiness isn't really present in the flavor either, except until the finish. It's balanced by a solid bitterness, and although it appears sweetish at the outset, it finishes quiet dry.

Overall it's a fairly drinkable lager with a nice character, but nothing special.

NeroFiddled, May 06, 2009
Photo of bmwats
3.63/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint.

A: Well. . . it's black as you could probably guess. Medium carbonation pours into a 1 finger, bubbly, grayish-white head. Settles fairly quickly, leaving a smattering of bubbles on the surface of the brew. Nice spiderweb lacing remains.

S: Roasted malt, nutty, and peaty. A bit 'soapy', too.

T: Dark roasted coffee malt. Not really much else. Pretty basic.

M: Light but hearty. Has a feel of lingering carbonation. A bit of a nutty, slightly pungent aftertaste.

D: Nice balance of flavor and feel.

Pretty solid atmosphere. Nice appearance and pleasant, although simple, nose. Flavor is much the same. Not complex, but tasty. Solid feel, good drinkability. Solid quaff.

bmwats, May 02, 2009
Photo of pandashaver
4.58/5  rDev +30.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow, what a pleasant surprise!
I had never heard of this, but having liked the Sam Adams Black Lager, I figured I'd give it a try...

Appearance was fantastic, almost stout-like in dark blackness and foamy off-white head. Retained a small white head throughout, and left very good lacing down the side of the glass.

Smell is nice roasty and chocolate. You get some sweet malt on the nose also.

A dry bitterness in the taste, but not too dry. Sweetness is very present in the initial taste, and it seems perfectly balanced to me with the bitter/roasted aftertaste of strong coffee.

Mouthfeel was fully present, not the least bit watery. At the same time, it was not filling. I'm not sure if this beer is really this good, or if I just like the style (as well as stouts), but this is a good brew.

Drinkability - wow, for all the flavor and nice mouthfeel here, this beer's damn drinkable! No ABV listed, but I can't feel it halfway through so I'm guessing it's in the 4-5% range. Also, this beer was VERY cheap considering. I want to pick up a 6 pack in the future.

pandashaver, May 01, 2009
Photo of zymurgy4all
4.13/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What a unique find! Black lagers other than German Schwarzbiers aren't too common. This beer has a great roasty aroma with no hop in the nose at all. It pours a deep brown/black color. It is very light on the tongue, and very clean like a schwarzbier. It isn't the most impressive beer, but very drinkable indeed!

zymurgy4all, Apr 24, 2009
Photo of psulovesbeer
3.58/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a pint glass with good head, nice lacing and a deep black color.
Smells bland and maybe a touch of roasted malt
Taste is clean upfront with a nice roasted grain finish
Mouthfeel is true lager upfront with a nice roasted linger to make you wan another sip this is highly drinkable and a refreshing example of the style... Not standout but good and worthy of a try

psulovesbeer, Apr 09, 2009
Photo of WesWes
3.68/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark brown/black color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a nice, pale, crystal, and chocolate malt scent along with some slightly fruity yeast esters. The taste is decent. It has a smooth black and crystal malt flavor that goes down easy and finishes dry with some light earthiness. The mouthfeel is good. It is a medium bodied beer with good carobnation. This is a pretty good black lager. I like a little more crystal malt flavor, but this is a fine representation of the style.

WesWes, Mar 31, 2009
Photo of tugdriver7
3.8/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed while watching the Australian GP last Sunday. Black/brown in the glass, decent (short lived) head. Smoky "stout-like" scent in the nose and in the initial taste, with a fairly rich dark malt flavor, though somewhat smoother (obviously, a lager) than a stout. Not quite as much of the rich, roasted flavor of a Schwarzbier, but very much like a quality Dunkel. A bit of astringent alcohol flavor emerges as the beer warms, reducing the "drinkability" rating a bit. Great offering, however. And thanks to "N" for bringing it by.

tugdriver7, Mar 31, 2009
Photo of Minkybut
3.85/5  rDev +10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is listed on BA as being brewed by Lion Brewery, but on my bottle it says McSorley's Brewery. Anyway it was hard as hell to find on BA. I poured the beer into my tumbler at 50 degrees. The beer was really black. No head much and no lacing. Smell was slighly nutty as was the taste. A bit of chocolate made the beer tasty. I will buy again.

Minkybut, Mar 25, 2009
Photo of akokandy
3.45/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to JoeyBeerBelly for the bottle!

A- 12oz brown bottle poured into a tulip pint. The beer pours black with a small head which quickly fades to nothing and leaves no lacing. Some light shows through.

S- Not a very strong aroma. Some caramel malts.

T- Caramel and roasted malts dominate the flavor. A little twang to the finish. The taste, I would say, is somewhere between Smithwick's and Newcastle, and basically on par with both. Not too bad at all and paired well with leftover corned beef. I've had some good schwarzbiers and dark lagers, but nothing that delivered this much flavor.

M- Thin, and light bodied. Could have used maybe a little more carbonation.

D- I might've had another if I had one on hand. I feel like this is a beer you need to be in the right mood for. Not my favorite style, and I never would have ordered it in a bar, but I was pleasantly surprised by this one. I'd have it again if offered.

akokandy, Mar 22, 2009
Photo of BDIMike
2.6/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a dark color that turns a reddish-brown color when held to the light. There is a thick brown head that dissipates fairly quick, but laces nicely on the way down.
Smell isn't back for a Euro Dark Lager. There is a bit of a roasted malt smell, but like most European beers, there is a strong hop smell to it as well.
Taste has a bit of a roasted malt taste, but is then taken over by a hop taste. Neither is a very good taste and instead of balancing, the two tastes kind of clash.
Mouthfeel is ok. There is average thickness, but there is a bit of a chewiness to the beer.
Drinkability is rough on this beer. It isn't all that bad, but there is a bit of a dry and scratchy aftertaste that ruins the sip. It makes it hard to drink.

BDIMike, Mar 20, 2009
Photo of puboflyons
4.5/5  rDev +28.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 12 fl. oz. bottle marked 051809-1613022. Sampled on March 16, 2009.

Before I get into details I must say that this was one of best tasting beers I've had lately.

The pour is deep black with a short-lived tan head. The aroma is a luscious smelling licorice, smokey, pipe tobacco, chocolate malt mixture. I really couldn't define it. All I could think of was a smoke-filled pub (and I don't smoke).

The mouthfeel was medium to heavy and somewhat creamy. The taste was very much like its aroma of licorice and smoke with a vibrant but subtle hoppy sensation. Wow, I wish I picked up a 6-pack of this one.

puboflyons, Mar 16, 2009
Photo of NJpadreFan
3.43/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

McSorley's- Irish Black Lager

A- Deep dark brown almost black with a good thick head. Big solid lacing down the glass.
S- Light coffee/ cocoa roasted malts.
T- Sweet lightly roasted chocolate and coffee malt with a decent butteriness.
M- Sweet creamy malt body throughout with a light earthy dry hop finish. Buttery and creamy feeling.

Overall- Not bad at all. The best that McSorley has to offer.?

NJpadreFan, Mar 16, 2009
Photo of wac9
3.85/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i found this beer in wiiliamsport pa . pouring into a glass , it pours a nice black color , and if you like black this is for you , smell well it smell like beer, taste like nice dark larger that you want to drink again. good mouthfeel starst off nice and only get better drinkability is wonderful i think i found my beer to drink for a while until i get bored if you like dark euro largers or beers black in your glass i think there nothing better seeing black in your glass then try it you may like it

wac9, Mar 15, 2009
Photo of matty
3.23/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pitch black beer with a rapidly fading head.Aroma is basically nothing.Taste is sweet with a hint of chocolate.Very watery and weak flavor.This is not by no means bad but it is not something I see myself buying again.I would probably recommend to try at least once but don't expect to get your socks knocked off.

matty, Mar 08, 2009
Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
3.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

L - black in color with a short-lived khaki head that remained as a light coating and left decent lacing.

S - light roasted barley malt and butter in the aroma.

T - the taste brings out more of the roasted malt than the smell with mild bittering on the finish.

F - medium bodied with low carbonation and a somewhat thin feel.

D - fairly easy to drink.

JoeyBeerBelly, Mar 05, 2009
Photo of Amalak
3.13/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

I had a bottle and it was dark, but some light got through. It had a decent head that dissipated without much lace. It had a nice wood scent to it.

It taste was grainy and even somewhat sour. It actually tasted like sourdough pretzels. It's sort of smooth, but just a bit too sour. I think I had this before at McSorley's bar in NYC and liked it better. But can't remember.

Amalak, Feb 14, 2009
McSorley's Irish Black Lager from Pabst Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 326 ratings.