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Session Black Lager - Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub

Session Black LagerSession Black Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

674 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 674
Reviews: 329
rAvg: 3.69
pDev: 12.2%

Brewed by:
Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
ABV 5.4% IBU 18

(Beer added by: msubulldog25 on 06-27-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 674 | Reviews: 329 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of BeerKangaroo


3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Into a pilsener glass.

A: dark brown color, super nice looking one fingered off-white to white foamy head that lasts for a good minute before dieing at a moderate pace, good amount of lacing sticking to the sides

S: nice inviting fruity/sweet malty aroma invading my nose smooth and delicately inviting

T: sweet chocolate covered fruit (but mainly banana), its almost as if it tastes like someone took a banana and stuck it in chocolate and then pulled those flavors and added it in this beer - I like it. The same chocolate banana aftertaste leading to the slightly same flavoring and shows a decent dryness in the finish

M: sits about a medium on the body, well, it says its "session" on the bottle, but I'm not so sure about that, hmmm....carbonation is pretty smooth and good for the Schwarzbier style

O: honestly, I like this one probably more for me, but its one of the heavier Schwarzbiers made by an American brewer, still worthy of having again, but I don't consider this too much of a "sessionable" brew

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2014 04:51:25 | More by BeerKangaroo
Photo of jneiswender


3.85/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured out of an 11 ounce bottle into a pint glass. Served cool.

Poured a dark red garnet body and a mocha head which is thick

Smells of that sweet German malt.

Sweet malt flavor. Syble hop. Somewhat chalky

Medium body

Nice beer but lacks any kind of layering of the malt. Kind of one dimensional

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2014 10:08:52 | More by jneiswender
Photo of jimmah120


3.78/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

11oz stubby bottle marked enjoy by 7/11.

look is a dark copper with a sudsy head that fades to a 'smattering'. smell is subtle roast and sweet malt. crispy, clean, full feeling lager with a roasty finish with notes of licorice and fruit.

i liak it

Serving type: bottle

03-25-2014 05:18:49 | More by jimmah120
Photo of artoolemomo


3.61/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Pours up an okay amount of head that has decent retention. The head is a light but dirty beige while the body is a muddy chestnut brown that shows signs of maroon and dark amber when held up to the light. Some lacing is left behind.

Nose- Subtle but still manages to have some complexity. Light bubblegum and cocoa. Slight notes of roasted malt. Some brown bread and grain. Lacks presence but for a beer this cheap, it's definitely better than you would expect. Swirling doesn't add anything to the picture.

Taste- Starts off with a good amount of sweetness- mostly raisins and a touch of a vinous note (red wine). Moves into a subtle mix of cocoa, light chocolate, and roasted malts. Some chalk and slight woody bitterness on the finish. Nothing outstanding, just a very efficient and low priced beer. Has good presence, lacks some complexity but makes up for it with solid balance and integration. It's quite flavorful for a session beer and something I'll easily take over the India Session Ales I've had. An above average to good beer which has become a staple of mine when I want something cheap and tasty.

Mouthfeel- Between light and medium bodied with mild carbonation. Some dryness to the finish.

Drinkability- Definitely is sessionable and while not outstanding, it does manage to keep my palate interested and my wallet feeling good. Will buy again and again.

Overall- Above average to good, solid beer- pretty much in the middle. Worth at try and you just might find out why this is a repeat purchase for me. A very good choice if you want to kick back and have a few beers.

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2014 03:15:36 | More by artoolemomo
Photo of FickleBeast

New Jersey

3.56/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11 oz stubby bottle poured into a nonic.

Pours a very dark brown color with almost no foam. Aroma is is a plum like malty sweetness with not much else.

First sip is a nice sweet malty flavor, with minimal bitterness. Nice plum/fruity flavor that goes down easy. Enjoyable, if a bit simple. I wish there was a little more hop character to diversify this beer a bit. As it stands, it is like a mini malt bomb.

This is an okay beer, I just wish there was more flavor beyond the plum sweetness.

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2014 06:09:37 | More by FickleBeast
Photo of Or80rowley


3.86/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Had @ 575 pizza, love me some good pizza and beer, they have a killer selection

A. Dark amber, one finger head

S. Malty, sweet, grain

T. Bourbon, sweet brown sugar, wood

M. Medium mouthcoat, medium carbonation

O. Excellent beer, glad I chose it with a great pizza

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2014 01:51:08 | More by Or80rowley
Photo of Zorro


3.35/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Dark brown colored head with a small tan colored head.

Smells lightly sweet with a slight patent malt scent. Smoke with char and a floral noble hop scent. Some chocolate and coffee but mostly just charred barley.

Starts out a little sweet with a bit of a chocolate cake flavor. On the sweet side with mostly a chocolate flavor with some faint coffee and smoke. Floral hop flavor. Tasty yet a pretty mildly flavored beer.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall where this beer shines is easy to drink attributes. Tasty but hardly strongly flavored you could give one of these to anyone and they would like it.

Serving type: bottle

12-21-2013 04:37:30 | More by Zorro
Photo of Suds


3.58/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

This beer is a deep, brownish-red colored beer. It has a darkens, but underlying clarity. The beer has a modest head, off white and soapy. The smell is grainy and smokey...slightly acrid and a bit malty. The taste is slanted sweet, but overall balanced. Not really bitter, but the finish is abrupt. Medium in body and solid. Drinkable and aptly named.

Serving type: bottle

12-08-2013 02:50:44 | More by Suds
Photo of ZoomanCru


3.69/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

App: Attractive dark brown color, deep reddish hues when held up to the light. Similar in appearance to a bock. Little head with minor retention, leaving a slight ring and some webbing in the middle. No bubble stream.
Smell: Deep molasses like smell with more roasted grain aromas than typical light lagers. Biscuit and chocolate malt present and wonderful. Dark honey with comb.
Taste: Taste a harmonious blend of toasted malt character and sweetness. Slight hop bitterness after swallowed but not enough to interfere with the harmony of malt flavors. Slight alcohol flavor that hints towards barleywine, which is a surprise considering this beer is only 5.4%. Chocolate and honey come to mind.
Mouth: More heavy bodied than your typical lager, which compliments the sweet side of this brew very well. Less carbonated than your typical lager. Overall light considering the formidable malt presence.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2013 00:23:20 | More by ZoomanCru
Photo of Aaron_Ramson


3.95/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another reviewer used "cold coffee" as a way to describe this beer, and while it is nowhere nearly as hearty or roasty as you'd imagine that to be, there is definitely a light and bright "breakfast coffee" character going on. Low part of roasted malt on the palate with anise and some woody, herbal qualities in the hop bitterness. The bitterness is low but crisp, and the mouthfeel is silky and smooth due to the low carbonation and full body. Sessionable for sure; the easiest drinking dark lager around.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2013 20:08:03 | More by Aaron_Ramson
Photo of Nugganooch


3.6/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12oz stubby bottle with enjoy by dated 05/03/13 (whoops!) – purchased at Boynton Liquors San Jose, CA

Hotel tumbler glass – 11/21/13

A: Dark brown body on the pour with a fizzy oatmeal cream head that dispels out to a thin film rather swiftly. Light etches of lace cling to the glass on the way down the drink.

S: Smells of dark roast malts with a strong black licorice feature to it. I get some faint underpinnings of smoky coffee bean with hints of cocoa mixed in as well. Nice and definitely roasty dark on the nose.

T: Roast malt flavors develop a more pronounced coffee like character with the dark licorice a bit restrained than compared to the nose. Earthy in the roast with a very light bitterness to the beer and no alcohol coming through in the flavor. Light and roasty much like a cold coffee.

M: Very light with a touch of dryness towards the finish. Overall a bit watery but with a nice creamy consistency.

D: A nice little dark lager. Fair amount of coffee roast and licorice flavors packaged up in a nice sessionable format.

Serving type: bottle

11-25-2013 23:16:46 | More by Nugganooch
Photo of scoobah36

South Carolina

4.7/5  rDev +27.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Absolutely love this beer. Best finish ever. and i don't feel like typing 250 characters so i am just going to talk about not wanting to type that much. for good measure

(a;lsdf;ak;alksjhdf;asldkjfa;sldkfjasdflkjasdfasdf;jasdf;asdf;ajsdflajksdf;alsdf;laksjdf;laksdjf;lasdjf;klasdj;fhadfg;bzdfk.ds fhdfhkadho;h;aegh ;glagh afw haefhj afghjklafg hjkarhkgfdshjklgfahjkgfsdhjklgfdshjklfvhjklfgdshjklgdfshjklfgdshjklfadsjklfsadkj

Serving type: bottle

10-23-2013 02:10:07 | More by scoobah36
Photo of JohnG190

New York

2.76/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Not really black, it pours a clear, deep mahogany with thin off-white head and little to no lacing. Aroma of roasted malt. Coffee and faint dark chocolate notes dominate the palate. Light bodied with light carbonation. Overall, a drinkable beer that has light attributes for a dark beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2013 21:53:05 | More by JohnG190
Photo of ryan1788a5


3.66/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

11.2oz stubby bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Rusty reddish-brown color. Great clarity. Beige head settles very quickly and doesn't leave any lacing.

S: Thin molasses, charcoal and soot. Slightly metallic. Moderate grassy hop. The nose is very faint.

T: Soot, crust. Lots of toast. Cocoa. Slightly metallic. Coffee. Grassy hops and mild hop bitterness. Very clean. Clean, toasty finish.

M: Light bodied. Full and very creamy in texture. Frothy. Low carbonation.

O: A decent stab at the style. Perfectly drinkable, though not as technical and well rounded as the better Schwarzbier-type brews out there.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2013 16:54:28 | More by ryan1788a5
Photo of bondjedi


4.24/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the Tacoma Craft Brew Festival.

Rich and smooth, has some heft without being debilitating. This was my first beer of the fest, and was a good way to kick the entire session off. In a perfect world, I would have made several trips to the Full Sail booth and imbibed this all afternoon long.

Serving type: on-tap

09-07-2013 22:32:35 | More by bondjedi
Photo of Dodo2step


3.43/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

P - Thanks to my buddy Matt for this brew.

A- dark red amber color with poor head and minimal lacing. Somewhat clear.

S- faint roasted caramel malts with metallic hint.

F- Strong metallic roasted malts. not bad but not good. some burnt maltiness kicks on the back end.

M- burnt malt covers the back end. medium bodied brew.

O- not a bad brew but I think the excessive burnt roasted malt goes just a tad overboard.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2013 20:27:32 | More by Dodo2step
Photo of JerzDevl2000

New Jersey

3.74/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Picked this up a few weeks back at the Buy-Rite in Jersey City, having never tried this before. Even though I tend to drink a type of beer such as this in the Winter, I wanted to give it a go and see if ti was a session brew or not. Although I only bought one bottle, this went down just as easily as the Session Lager without feeling weak or watered-down. Without being terribly complex or heavy, there was a lot to like about this beer and it was quite true to stylistic form as well.

As expected, the pour to this was dark, with not a lot of head or lacing to be seen. The aroma was that of oatmeal, cereal, and some burnt maltiness, which was all repeated in the taste. This had a slightly thin and not terribly carbonated taste to it, while feeling roasted and somewhat burnt. There was a hint of caramel stickiness to it as well, without the actual taste of caramel being present. It almost felt like a Root Beer or Birth Beer soda that had been left out a bit too long, and slightly fermented.

The alcohol was good in this and had I bought more, I could have downed a few more in one sitting. Even though it's muggy as anything outside, I enjoyed this beer and thought that it fit the description of what a good Schwarzbier should be. Not as roasted as a Porter, full as a Stout, or roasted and sticky as a Scotch Ale, this has a nice niche of its own and is one of the few dark beers that could be enjoyed year-round. Certainly worthy of the "Session" on the side of the bottle!

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2013 07:07:05 | More by JerzDevl2000
Photo of GarthDanielson

North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a pill bottle into a shaker pint, the beer is a ruby-brown coloring with a thin ring of film on the surface. Aromas of sweet nut and hints of smoke, with a grainy backbone and charcoal notes. Flavors of smoke and rich, robust toffee and nut. Very balanced, but light. Thin, smooth body with a crisp, clean finish. Smokey sweet aftertaste, with no real linger. Very easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2013 18:42:52 | More by GarthDanielson
Photo of mactrail


3.13/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear amber brown in the big chalice. A brief foam which subsides to nothing. The last pour seemed to perk up a little, however. Carbonation is average.

Modest caramel flavor is rather pleasant. There is even a hint of roast malt. A touch of butter, faintly nutty. Some bitter twiggy aftertaste. This is pretty basic swill.

Tastes just like the old school dark lagers you used to find at Shakey's and the other pizza joints. Actually, it's a lot like Pabst Bock from the 70s, though this does have a hint of hops. From the 12 oz stubby bought at Trader Joe's.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2013 06:25:56 | More by mactrail
Photo of BethanyB

New Jersey

3.6/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: A medium-dark molasses brown with vivid clarity and a massive, fluffy, bubbly, light tan head that, despite its size, is light and leaves very little lacing.

Smell: Dark roasted malt and carob aroma manages to also be soft and round. Quite pleasant.

Taste: Just enough roastiness to bring a kick to an otherwise clean lager. Faint noble hops bring some extra poise to the flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light mouthfeel with a watery character that unfortunately distracts from some of the beer's stronger suits. Carbonation is moderate. Could be higher for a less slippery and more refreshing impression.

Overall: A nice, sessionable, yet flavorful Schwarzbier, and a fairly good example of the style. The watery quality does detract from the beer, however.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2013 00:09:04 | More by BethanyB
Photo of WVbeergeek


4.01/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Full Session Black Lager 5.4% abv 
Appears a beautiful black beer with ruby cola highlights, dark tan head light whimsical lacing left behind it's everything I want in a beer so far. The nose is earthy hops with a kiss of roasted far caramel notes. The flavor is just as expressive with dark malts and pure sexiness than any other dark lager on the market these brewers nailed the essence of a session beer! Light bodied on the palate but balanced to perfection never feeling watered down this is beer everyone can and will embrace.

Serving type: bottle

07-08-2013 17:56:58 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of horshack7


3.68/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Poured from a short stubby bottle is a very dark colored beer with a one inch head.

Aroma: Roasty, dark fruits, smokiness, raisins. faint black licorice, plum.

Taste: Malt forward but with some smokiness to balance it out. Raisins, dark bread, licorice, a wisp of pear, plum.

Notes: It's good to see this style there are not too many of them and this one is very drinkable. Cheers.

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2013 04:07:40 | More by horshack7
Photo of AlCaponeJunior


3.59/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Saw this one at the supermarket today, cheep! What the hey, let's give it a try. I have liked other full sail beers in the past, so I didn't think there was much risk in trying this one on a blind sixer.

Pretty dark but not really black, more like a brown ale in color, clear, head was ok but short lived and there's not a lot of lacing.

Aroma and taste were nice, not spectacular but enjoyable. Roasty and caramel flavors are foremost, along with a little lager-y yeastiness and a decent bittering from the hops.

Body is fairly light but has some chewy-ness, carbonation is well balanced for the style.

Overall it's not going to make the front page of the NYT for setting the beer world ablaze, but it's certainly quite drinkable, and was well worth the price. A tasty beer doesn't have to set records or blaze new territory to be enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2013 18:26:37 | More by AlCaponeJunior
Photo of dbossman


3.68/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Black with a thin film of a head; okay lacing

S: Grainy, sweet chocolatey malts--a bit tart and musty; some anise and coffee in the finish as well

T: Chalky chocolatey malts up front with a touch of coffee and cola; musty, brainy, roasty, pretty tasty

F: Fairly medium body and creamy for a lager

O: A decent roasty, easy-to-drink black lager

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2013 17:45:38 | More by dbossman
Photo of wac9


3.41/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

small bottle big taste best schwarzbier i have had in a while pours black in a glass of course its short dark and drinkable so enjoy smells cold and crisp taste smooth and nice a easy drinking beer sit back and enjoy this beer not a bad sip in the whole glass drink and enjoy and smile when you do it

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2013 01:43:52 | More by wac9
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Session Black Lager from Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub
83 out of 100 based on 674 ratings.