Great Lakes Nosferatu - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes NosferatuGreat Lakes Nosferatu

Educational use only; do not reuse.

872 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 872
Hads: 2,402
Avg: 4.07
pDev: 17.69%
Wants: 254
Gots: 326 | FT: 9
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-19-2001

Imperial Red Ale
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Great Lakes Nosferatu Alström Bros
Reviews: 872 | Hads: 2,402
Photo of Petrislav
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into pint glass.

A: Two fingers of tight beige head nestled atop tarnished amber hued brew.

S: Floral and spicy hops, grapefruit!

T: Sweet malt, citrus hops, virtually no alcohol detectable even though it is 8% abv. Sweet start and bitter finish.

M: Lager smooth, medium bodied ale.

D: Can't tell its high abv until you finish!

 351 characters

Photo of TaddyPorter
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

October 6, 2009
Serving type: 12 oz. bottle into a snifter

Jen H. had been talking up the virtues of this brew on Facebook, putting it in her top five along with Torpedo, Ruination, Choklat, and 3 Fonteinen Oude Geuze Vintage. Figured it had to at least be worth giving another go. And boy was she (and I) right! This is a powerhouse of a beer defined in the slippery realm of the stock ale. It is deep and robust and beautifully balanced.

A dark golden mahogany hue picks up light but is dark enough to obscure a bit as well. A frothy one-finger head quickly dissipates to a few loose bubbles around the edges. Overall the color is a bit dull, not revealing of the delicious drink within. Appearance is not its strongest quality--it doesn't look like the magic potion that it is.

First time I ever accidentally snorted a beer was just now. Having taken an extra-deep whiff, I can say that some of its most salient qualities come through in its maltiness--particularly some hazelnut paper scent that reminds of me of the Dogfish Head 60 Minute (a very good thing) and roasted nuttiness prevails. It really, really smells good. It subtly evokes fall leaves and autumn, finishing with a leafy and natural hoppiness.

A beautiful example of balance in a nonetheless bold and flavorful beer, an essay in balance. Somewhat contrary to the way the scent hits the nose, with the taste the hops prevail first, boldly coming through in a bitter wave of piney, resiny depth. Afterward the malt character settles in, dry dark pumpernickel toast dominating the middle. Finishes with a bit of light biscuitiness.

Smooth, almost chewy. Definitely has significant carbonation that helps consolidate the flavors, but leaves the tongue with a silky smoothness to enjoy the malt and hop combination.

Rebecca was feeling the alcohol after just one sip. She mentioned she'd like to drink this beer in a rustic cabin in the wintertime while making a stew. It has a farmhouse respectability somehow, it's not trendy but it's solid and robust, worth every penny and delivering on each sip. A proud but not pompous beer that I would probably welcome into my snifter just about any night of the week.

 2,233 characters

Photo of BrianOhio
4.11/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a really nice deep copper color. Looks great in the glass. Aroma is not overwhelming citrus hops, but it's there in a subtle way that still told me I was going to enjoy this beer.

This is one of the more drinkable, strong ales I have sampled. I recently had Stone IPA and found that too harsh for my taste...but this is completely different. Initially sweet citrus, smooths out quickly, and then a really nice finish.

I'm not one that is going to get into all of the various fruits and breads I am detecting here, but I will tell you that for my taste, this is an outstanding beer. There were also some comments on price, but I have no issue paying $9.99 for a 4-pack of something of this quality.

Great Lakes is having a great fall, with this plus their Oktoberfest.

 778 characters

Photo of Ty1erC
4.53/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

*12 oz bottle poured into a snifter glass.*

a: this beer looks simply awesome. its color is a dark reddish-copper, and the head is thick with good retention. great lacing.

s: smells of caramel, citrus and pine.

t: the taste is mostly hops, with a complex maltiness hiding underneath. the presence of the hops grows more intense in the finish.

m: medium to full-bodied, with just enough carbonation.

d: nosferatu is exceptionally drinkable. it's a great example of my favorite style of beer. i just wish it wasn't seasonal!

 528 characters

Photo of JiminKY
4.68/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I came across two 4-packs on the "outdated, breakage and returns" shelf, in the storeroom of my local Liquor Barn, while heading for the restroom.

Knowing that these beers could take some age, I convinced the beer manager to let me purchase them. The result is my first taste of an "aged" version of a beer I count as a favorite, when fresh.

These bottles are labeled "Please enjoy by: DEC O7/O6." My understanding is that Great Lakes, at the time, put expiration dates at six months past bottling date, so I am assuming these are just short of two years old. And though Nosferatu is a "Fall" seasonal, this cool, rainy Spring day seems a great time to enjoy a couple.

The color remains identical to the blood-red hue of the fresh version I remember. The quickly-diminishing head still scatters across the top of the beer and laces lastingly along the snifter sides.

The smell is somewhat more subdued than that I recall of the fresh version. When fresh, I remember merely sniffing it for a good ten minutes before taking a sip. I can't really say what it is I smell, now, but it is still very pleasant, if a bit sweeter.

As is apparently the norm with aged brews, the hops character has softened, considerably, from what I experienced with the fresh version. That softening, however, blended wonderfully with the overall profile of the beer. The taste seems to go through clearer stages, now, beginning with the sweetness of the malt and finishing, distictly, with a refined hop bitterness.

The mouthfeel remains soft and enveloping in this aged version, just as I remember it in the fresher one. The tongue and palate are coated with a sticky, lasting impression of spectacular taste.

As with Great Lakes' other "big" beers, this is dangerously drinkable. It takes tremendous restraint to drink this beer at the "respectable" pace it deserves (and probably requires, considering its 8% abv).

I hope you get the chance to enjoy your own bottle of Nosferatu--whether fresh or aged. I truly think it is one of the best beers made by an American brewery.

 2,062 characters

Photo of theHoff77
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another beer on my radar for the past year, since I have become a fan of just about all GLBC beers.

Poured into a pint glass. Nice red amber in color with maybe a one finger head and little lacing. This beer is very malt forward which is about the only thing I pick up in the smell and it dominates in the taste. Very well balanced in flavor and besides the malt I get the hops, some toffee, and sweet tart fruitiness. It comes off very smooth at first but has a bitter dry aftertaste that is non-offensive. My overall opinion is that it is a really good beer but it lacks distinctiveness and for a seasonal I was expecting it to be a bit more bold all around. Because of this I can't say it justifies the higher price of it, which was close to $12 for a 4pk. If this was on their main line of beers I would probably rate it higher, but in the scope of things it's just another quality product from GLBC that I recommend for at least a try.

 941 characters

Photo of rattech
3.91/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a point glass

Appearace: Dark royal brown, a very consistence 1 cm head. It really looks quite nice and appealing. On second inspection it looks quite a bit like blood…

Smell: Dried fruit and something else. I can’t quite place it, but it isn’t exactly appealing. The beer almost smells like something has been sitting a bit too long and it is starting to rot. Of course, it isn’t exactly unappealing.

Taste: Sweet and sour. Surprisingly mild based on the smell. The fact that this has 8% alcohol surprises me, as doesn’t quite taste it. I can’t exactly place this beer, but it certainly isn’t bad.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel of the beer is good. Good balance, not perfect, but good.

Drinability: The 8% alcohol is hidden quite well, there is sweetness and bitterness. Honestly, for what it is the drinkability is really quite nice.

 868 characters

Photo of eze153
3.18/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I have heard much hype over this beer and now I got to try a draft, needless to say I was not as thoroughly impressed as the others who hyped this beer up.

The restaurant I was in was pretty dark so it was hard to really judge the appearance of the beer, but it looked good to me. the smell was good, could def small the hops and some other spices mixed in. the taste was strong in hops, which I really don't like at all, but I'll have to say it;s much better than say an extremely hoppy beer, I could at least drink one of these again.

 539 characters

Photo of BottleOfPills
4.36/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First I have to say the Appearance is exceptional. The red color is as someone said very similiar to the color of the label. Plus I just loved this movie.

The smell is good, I've currently got a cold so it may be even better than what I can tell.

Ahh the most import thing - Taste - I love it, Maybe I'm growing but well normally these high ABV I am wary of, but this is good at 8%.

Mouthfeel - it's crisp, and sticky. probably like blood. Going to say good

Drinkability - well it's New Years Eve and I just had lunch and I'm on number three, so I'd say it's pretty darn drinkable...4.5.

Overall a pretty darn good beer, I got mine at Kroger's here in Barboursville WV for 12.99, and the expiration date was a couple weeks ago, but I bought it over a month ago.. Still very good.

 784 characters

Photo of smitty1080
4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was surprised by the light color of this beer. It's a nice blend of amber and peach.
The aroma is piney and fresh.
The taste is bitter and spicy with a dry somewhat sweet finish.
The mouth feel is rich, slightly sticky with a light carbonation tingle.
Very tasty and a bit to easy to drink.

 299 characters

Photo of rocketmotor
3.26/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured from 12oz bottle, presumed date code of August 06, about 6 months old. Leaves nice lacing and good appearance, dark red color and clear. Circles of hop oils on top.

Smell is ok, mostly sweet, dark malt and little bit of alcohol, can't really smell any hops. Has a good taste of clean red malts and mild hops in the finish. The alcohol can be tasted, a bit too much IMO. Could use more hops for my preference.

Good mouthfeel, nice coating of the mouth with some solidity.

Drinkability - not so great, a bit too much alcohol is tasted, don't think I would buy it again.

 583 characters

Photo of amidabha
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

vigorous pour into a sam adams perfect pint gave this an inch plus head with an intense lacing and aromatics and a perfectly clear deep amber color lays beneath.

there is a slightly bitter aftertaste that the malt doesn't quite catch up with but the hops leave a nice dance on the tongue. slightly hoppy just the way i like it.

this is a great beer and i like the whole experience of drinking it from the smell to the taste and after. the growler has a slightly lighter mouthfeel than a bottle which only makes it feel fresher to me somehow.

at $7.49 a growler at DEP's i'm glad they have another keg on the way when this one runs out. a great beer for when the nights turn colder.

 685 characters

Photo of mwalters
4.62/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a case to have through October. Poured in to a snifter, nice copper red color. The smell was hoppy with a citrus malt tone. I had an aroma that was quite different but very tempting. The beer was not cloudy at all but deep in color. Just the right amount of carbonation, and you taste that this is a higher alchohol beer. Nice bitter tone. Highly reccomended. I also had it from the tap which was very good.

 414 characters

Photo of ccahoon22
3.34/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - This beer pours a reddish copper color with a good head.

S - There is a definite ale smell. You can also smell the alcohol combined with a hint of sweetness, but not too a very strong smell.

T - Very smooth taste without any distinct flavors aside from the standard ale taste. Definite hop taste with some bitterness. Overall good beer but lacks the character of other ales.

 381 characters

Photo of TMinton22
3/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Dark, reddish tint, brown body with tanish head that reduced to a thin cap left a decent lacing.

Aroma was intriguing being I've never smelled any beer like it. Reminded me of fresh cut hay from my hay bailing days.

Taste I thought was good except for the strong bite at the end. I couldn't get past it and it's safe to say one was enough for me.

 349 characters

Photo of dazdave
3.67/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2nd Red ale I've had tonight. I often save beers in the fridge that I like and finally open them a year or 2 later out of the blue. This one has a date of Dec 06 on it. I really don't recall whether or not I like this particular beer. I'm not a fan of most of the common Great Lakes beers. I love their big beers though.
Pours with almost an inch and a half tan head with a dark burnt red hue. I mildly smell a sweet caramel maltiness. I guess that should be expected when its been waiting almost 2 years to be drank. The beer is still fizzy not overly by any means. I'm glad i didn't let it go any further though.
Lots of great tastes overwhelm my tongue. Its mainly sweet rush though. The malts seem very over the top and I barely detect any alcohol. Its pretty sneaky as it hides with the very light hops. There's no real bite to this beer. Its not crisp but that again is probably to be expected. I really do like it though. I taste coriander a little nutmeg and lot and lots of caramel oh yes and all the sweetness up front makes the grapefruit finish also still pretty sweet.
Pretty good beer. I'm definitely going to be on the lookout for when this comes out again.

 1,174 characters

Photo of surlysober
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

FOURTH TRIAL: I've had this beer a few times before at (what tastes like) varying degrees of freshness. The first few times I've had it, it had a great hop presence, a nice malty backbone, and a bit of rye flavore. However, this time, it was much less hoppy and the malt and alcohol seemed to have taken a more dominant position. It was still good, but not as good as the first few trials. When both are fresh, I slightly prefer Founder's Red's Rye (which tastes quite similar to me), but to me, this beer seems to age a bit better (still rather have it fresh though). Overall, a great beer: great looking, great lacing, great smelling, and great tasting.

 655 characters

Photo of The_Blodge
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A: Served from a bottle into a tulip glass. Pours a crystal clear bright red color with a one finger head. nice lacing down the glass as the head slowly dissipates into a thin film. Love the redness of this one.

S: Fruity notes with bright citrus hop character. Orange and grapefruit. Malty undertones but blend well with the bright hop character in the nose. Not picking up a lot of alcohol. Very subtle. This one will bite.

T: Bitter up front like an IPA. Pleasant hoppiness with a hearty, malty finish. Fruit notes. Delicious!

M: Big bodied beer with a chewy mouthfeel. Creamy texture. Tight carbonation. Somewhat over carbonated in my opinion.

O: One of my favorite beers this time of year. This is a dangerous beer. It will sneak up and bite you...for real.

 766 characters

Photo of atuite
3.57/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle with best by date of 12/05/07.
Poured with less head then others have eluded to but the head did not completely dissipate- a copper, red color. smell is rather pleasant and there is a strong fruity scent- somewhere between grapfruit and grape as pointed out by others. taste was not as pleasant as expected. strong hops flavor but much less of the fruit suggested by the scent- the alcohol content is not well hidden- i've had worse but i've had much better,even at 9-10%. mouthfeel is average and the beer is easiy drinkable but i'd stop after a couple. wondering what it tastes like on tap . . .

 610 characters

Photo of biggerboat88
4.49/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Held up to light Nosferatu has a great ruby red color with some off-white head that at first produces some elaborate lacing which eventually slides down the glass. Head retention itself was great, the lacing however did not maintain itself, but that doesn't really matter to me. Really strong citrus hops aromas with a rich malty background. I got some grapefruit coming through but balanced out with the malts, smelled fantastic. After a couple sips I couldn't help but think about just how balanced this beer is. While you get plenty of hops at first, they are never overbearing or offensive. The wet and sticky hop goodness is quickly followed by a slight sweetness and malt flavors. Very well carbonated but it still coats the tongue with it's flavors and character, after a while you get a little bit of alcohol warmth going down. Deceptively drinkable and delicious! I had only had this once before but will hopefully grab it a few more times before the season is over.

 975 characters

Photo of Briarbush
4.06/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- A dark red almost blood red. :)

Smell- Not a very strong beer in terms of aroma a light hoppy smell though

Taste- Hops from start to finish. With a piney and citrus flavor hiding in the

Mouthfeel- Was not overpowering considering the ABV.

Drinkability- Take your time and enjoy this one, it's worth it. One of my seasonal favorites.

 370 characters

Photo of mgobrew
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

P: 12 Oz Brown Bottle

A: Dark red "sanguine", thick manila head clings to the glass as it dissipates.

S: Initially strong hop aroma with noticeable citrus and grassy hints. The sun must be setting because this beer is starting to bare its fangs....

T: Bitterness overpowers at first with caramel entering but not enough to balance the bite of the hop bitterness. Bitter finish with a warming alcohol accompaniment.

M: Nice and full bodied but not too thick more on the smooth side.

D: Apply named after the vampire as it combines the blood red color and hop bite with the warm sting of the alcohol. At 8% it is hypnotically drinkable so have your cross at the ready to avoid falling under its spell.

 714 characters

Photo of SamAdams
4.23/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very impressed with this one. It kind of remindes me of a combo of two other Great Lakes beer. It has the hops flavor of the Burning River Pale Ale, and the malt from Conway's Irish Ale. A easy one to drink and packs a little punch too. A good one for Halloween.

 270 characters

Photo of Manos
4.32/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2005 summer edition
Hop Devil on steriods, was my first thought. Piny, IPA feel for sure; a
90 minute IPA crossed with citrus and a nice oktoberfest lager. Pretty
saturated orange red appearance. Sipper, enjoy this limited edition
while you can. Hunt this vampyre down!

 273 characters

Photo of schlazzgraft
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this in my college town on tap... they always have some interesting great lakes brew and i'm always willing to try what they put out.

A - Pretty standard appearance, dark/reddish brown with nice lacing and a decent head retention

S - Nice, earthy and hoppy. Not shockingly piney or citrusy, but subtle and balanced.

T - Similar to the smell, with a great earthy, drying bite to it that I've never experience with any other beers. Exceptional taste, I couldn't stop going back for another sip just to figure out what I was tasting! Great stock ale that has a really original taste.

M - Smooth, and a nice dry finish with the perfect amount of hop bite.

D - Pretty strong, I was starting to get a good buzz and am still feeling this one to be honest (: ... I'd get it again, but i'm not sure how many i could drink in a night

Overall, this is a great beer I'd suggest anyone to try... very different and very unique. Great Lakes always has a knack for surprising me. Bravo!

 981 characters

Great Lakes Nosferatu from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 872 ratings.