1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Great Lakes Nosferatu - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes NosferatuGreat Lakes Nosferatu

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,300 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,300
Reviews: 855
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 10.78%
Wants: 226
Gots: 269 | FT: 10
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: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Great Lakes Nosferatu Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,300 | Reviews: 855 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RJBeverage
2.91/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A red/amber possibly attempting to be blood colored beer. A bit hoppy, slightly bitter, with a citrusy tang, a bit of grapefruitish taste. It's a pleasant taste, but with a bit too much bitter aftertaste for me. The mouthfeel is a robust, carbonated feel.

The 8% abv doesn't show up in the smell, or the taste.

If you like a hoppier beer you might like this, it's not bad just not what I would come back to.

Photo of halo21
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: This beer poured a nice striking ruby blood red with a half inch thick white head with fine carbonation that left beautiful lacing all the way down; this is a beer with legs.

Smell: Candied apples up front, moving to a sweet toasty malt. There is a bit of earthy hops and yeast/alcohol esters.

Taste: A full flavored toasty malt beer. Reminds me of a bold/imperial Oktoberfest, with a bit more roast. A nice hop appears at the end of the sip, and leaves a dry toasted malt sweetness. As it warms, more yeast comes through, moving to nice fruit esters with a little brown sugar.

Mouthfeel: The creamy head gives this medium to full bodied brew a nice flow; active carbonation is a nice touch.

Drinkability: Medium to low. A potent brew that sneaks up on you.

Notes: A great Halloween beer - it seems to be a red, imperial oktoberfest. Very enjoyable. Look forward to one again next year. I have never found a less than stellar beer from Great Lakes; keep them coming!

Photo of DanThomas
4.65/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- Deep red with some copper/amber hues. Good head retention.

S- Rich caramel malts, earthy hops, and a faint whiff of alcohol.

T- Toast/dry biscuit type malt flavor; subtle caramel sweetness, but the malt flavor on this one is mostly dry. The "bite" finish isn't just a pun--earthy/piney hops take over towards the end, finishing crisp, bitter, and refreshing. It's amazing how so much flavor can end so cleanly, and the hops and the malts are perfectly balanced. Great Lakes does balance like no one else.

M- Very full-bodied, refreshingly low carbonation. It's like you're chewing this beer, which is fine by me.

D- No alcohol whatsoever on the taste, meaning watch out. I could throw back 4 or 5 of these if I didn't know the alcohol.

Tremendous beer from Great Lakes!

Photo of schlazzgraft
4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
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!

Photo of 321jeff
4.06/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep reddish amber with a finger of off white head that slowly fades, leaving some nice lacing.

Aroma is sweet caramel malts and some piney and grassy hops, but they're not particularly fragrant like in an IPA or something like that. I also get some hints of dough, but the sweet malt is dominant.

Taste is loaded with sweet caramel offset nicely by the advertised "hop bite." I also get some tea in the finish, but I think that could just be an effect of the hops.

Very full in body with moderate carbonation. Smooth for an 8% strong ale, the hops and malt are so nicely melded, I could easily drink a couple more of these.

Photo of WeedKing4
3.98/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark, clear red with a good amount of foam. Tastes quite malty with a bitter finish. Hops lingering in slightly too. Makes me wonder if this is an older bottle. The hops seem to have faded a little. Drinks down very smooth though and theres no hint of the 8% alc at all. Its not bad, but I was expecting a bit more from th is.

Photo of portia99
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle (enjoy by 12/09/10) generously provided as an extra in a trade with london1o1. Thanks! Poured into a Brooklyn snifter.

A - Pours a beautiful, crystal clear ruby tinged amber color. A short finger of tan colored foam rests briefly and falls reluctantly to a skim coat and a thick, uneven and foamy collar. Multiple beautiful rings of lacing left all around the glass.

S - An underlying base of caramelly and bready malt. Also a solid layer of dirt-like earthiness that somehow works here. On top are some piney hops with a touch of grassiness thrown in for good measure.

T - Nice piney hop presence up front. Underneath is a strong earthiness with some roasty flavors and a ton of bready malt. Lightly sweet on the swallow with caramelly goodness. Overall, very crisp and clean...not exactly what I expected, but definitely not let down at all. Good fall evening flavors.

M - Medium bodied with a middle ground carbonation level too. Crisply bitter taste that lingers far past the swallow. A bit resiny in feel, otherwise clean overall.

D - Scary at 8%...doesn't really show. Well balanced and well blended array of flavors. An interesting take on the stock ale. Very clean tasting...great for the cool, rainy evening I'm experiencing now. Would love to have this again.

Photo of Thorpe429
3.52/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Reviewed from notes. On tap at Scion.

Poured into a snifter. The color is a murky amber with a short light-tan head that persists for quite some time. The nose is a bit of roasted nuttiness with some caramel and light fruits. A bit of earthy and pine hops. Faint citrus as well. The taste melds things together but is a bit plain. Some slightly-sweet cherry-tasting malt and a bit of light hops. Feel is medium and a bit sweet with a mild bitterness. Some good flavors individually, but I don't quite like how everything comes together in the end.

Photo of rka758
3.91/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 brewing poured into SA perfect pint.
Purchased Whole Foods @ $12/4 pack.

A: Pours an "orangy brown," or so my girlfriend says, I say copper. Good carbonation with a 2-finger head that sticks around.
S: Picking up on rich, velvet like smells of caramel and vanilla.
T: I first get the malt flavors and then the hops come on at the end.
M: Really nice texture, with lively carbonation.
D: This is one of my favority Great Lakes brews, if not my #1. I feel like its the perfect beer for me to transition from my warm weather IPAs to my cold weather stouts. A great ale and at 8% I don't think you could go wrong.

Photo of Cylinsier
4.12/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Pours a clear amber reddish color, moderate off white head with decent retention.

Smells of very faint sweet malts like buttery apples, but mostly of piney wet hops.

The taste is an even greater ration of piney hoppiness to a very subtle sweet malt flavor. Perhaps more of a caramel and bread malt flavor at this point.

Feel is moderate, a bit on the thicker side of right down the middle, with the carbonation hitting more on the back of the tongue and in the cheeks.

Tastey good beer, the strength probably puts it just out of session range for most, but still might be hard to refuse a second one. Or a third.

Photo of Seanibus
4.18/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear amber with a lively head. The aroma is warm a cherrylike, but with some earthy and grassy quality to it that increases as it warms. The flavor is like a dark chocolate-covered cherry, sweet and rich and bitter, with a delicious spiciness like a fruitcake, with toasty wheat and malt. There is a wonderful deep bitterness on the finish. The mouthfeel is wonderfully chewy.

Photo of adrock7309
4.07/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a fresh cold bottle into a Bells tulip and was surpised by all the pale peachy colored head. Had to pour into the glass in steps.

Aroma was heavy on the malt and piney hop resin. Was picking up some vanilla and brown sugar in flavor on top of the sweetness. I also noted a bit of a metallic tinge on my tongue but not enough to make the beer unappealing.

Overall a great beer but I would prefer third coast ale over this anyday.

Photo of yeahnatenelson
4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance -- Pours a deep ruddy amber, high clarity, with one finger of sudsy parchment head. Great color, but poor head retention and minimal lace.

Smell -- Pink grapefruit, caramel malt, apricots, toasted nuts, a little bit of mineral character.

Taste -- Bright grapefruit hops, macerated drupes, pears, pineapple, amber malt, biscuit dough, caramel, mineral water. Mild pine resin bitterness creep in toward the back end. Finish is amber malt, drupes, and pine resin.

Mouthfeel -- medium-full in body, a bit slick, nearly chewy with lively carbonation.

Drinkability -- Quite good. Great Lakes Brewing tends to be a mixed bag for me, but this was my cup of tea. American Barleywine meets English DIPA? It blurs a lot of lines in a good way. Satisfying malt character with citrusy hops make this terribly drinkable. Good on ya, Great Lakes!

Photo of hardy008
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Copper color with a two finger light tan head with nice retention and lacing. The aroma is a nice combination of caramel malt and citrus hops.

This beer tastes just like it smells. Caramel malt combined with citrus hops. Not overly complex, just a nice flavorful beer.

Medium bodied, proper carbonation,and there is a nice combination of sweetness balanced by hop bitterness. I like this beer quite a bit, and will be sure to look for it again.

Photo of ne0m00re
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

09/29/10- Had a 12 oz of this.
A: Reddish amber; nice smooth dark cream head.
S: Nice sweet copper, earthy green hops and caramel malts, some cinnamon raisin bread.
T: Rich caramel malt, more roasted than expected, with earthy and moldy hops. Nicely mellow.
M: Nicely creamy and syrupy.
D: Really good for a Strong Ale (Old ale?).

Photo of CaptDavyJones
5/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle with the freshness date and ABV on the label. Deep blood red color; not too much of a head, good carbonation. Aroma is an unique blend of sweet caramel with pine, unlike any I have had so far. The taste is truly exceptional, the hops hit you right away, but the finish is malty/sweet. The ABV is masked very well amongst the bevy of flavors that hit your palate. Drinkability is very good, too bad it is a seasonal beer. Highly recommended, anyone and everyone who appreciates beer MUST have the Nosferatu. I don't know how they do it, but Great Lakes is another brewery that keeps churning, well brewing, one solid beer after another.... Cheers!!!

Photo of Bonis
3.95/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours to an amber/red,, fluffy off white inch of head, leaves a nice lace. Some sediment suspension is notable, and that's fine with me.

S - Big citrus hops, a tad grassy, and some caramel malt peaks through. Holds the aroma well, as this bottle has been sitting in my fridge for quite some time.

T - Earthy and grassy, with a nice hop profile with citrus and notes of pine. Sugars linger in the mouth with a subtle bitterness. This one is well balanced. Alcohol is there but not really overwhelming.

M - Pretty high carbonation, medium bodied, and a fairly dry finish.

D - An easy drink. Another fine offering from Great Lakes.

Drink by date: 12/16/10

Photo of russwbeck
2.78/5  rDev -31.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Dark amber pour with a small off-white head, rescinding quickly, and decent lacing.

S: Very malty with the hops coming through predominantly. Some caramel and spiciness in there as well.

T: Hop bitterness all over the place. Piney, but mostly malty and caramel. Hops stay on the palate for a long time after the last drink.

MF: Medium body and carbonation. Oily with a bit of a bite.

D: Not high for me. Intense hops make it tough to drink it consecutively.

Photo of rpardon7
4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at Pazzo's Pizza Pub. A- the beer is a reddish amber color with a thin tight white head that recedes into lacing for the entire beer. Smell is of citrus and pine hops big hop pressance. Taste is very nice crisp citrus hops some grapefruit maybe a little pin and grassy hop flavors, balance by a nice malt backbone that doesn't have much pressance up front but helps round out the beer. Mouthfeel is very clean and crisp and light. Very drinkable beer, you definately do not find the 8% abv in this one. I honestly was expecting more hop and more alchohol in this one.

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.26/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to the generous jahuneyc for the hook-up.

A - It is pours a radiant shade of auburn with ruby and copper highlights. There is a two inch pancake batter head that recedes to a wispy cap but deposits large webs of lace in its wake.

S - There is a significant hop presence that I wasn't expecting. I don't know why I wasn't expecting it, but I digress... The nose has notes of tangerine, orange blossom and a floral-herbal nuance in the range of lavender or chamomile. The malt is pretty subdued aromatically, lending only a vague toasty biscuit element.

T - I really dig the flavor, it is quite unusual. Upon my first sip, I don't know quite what to make of it. I am struck by how hop-centric it is and also how unusual the hop contribution is unto the palate. Strange, pleasant vegetal notes are foremost, with a green weed-stem dankness. There are some pink grapefruit and some earthy black dirt impressions, as well. Also, I am starting to notice a very unusual similarity in flavor to acorn or butternut squash. This is some alchemy here! I am impressed. The slightly sweet and mineral-y malt seems to be very much in the background, perhaps contributing most noticeably to the astringency on the finish.

M - Lighter than medium-bodied, with a bit of late effervescence on the finish, providing a pleasant bitterness.

D - Very interesting. I would like more. Probably wouldn't be my go-to, but you never say never. At least I don't.

Photo of crossovert
3.97/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle, best before 11/30/10.

It pours a deep brownish crimson with a soapy off-white head. It sticks for a while and recedes to a lot of lacing.

The smell is hoppy goodness. There is tons of ruby red grapefruit and citrus with a bit of pine. There is also some caramel and toastiness from the malt underneath.

The taste is pretty awesome, it has been a while since I have had a beer this hoppy (I haven't had any good, fresh IPAs lately). It is mostly pine, which I love. There is a hint of astringent bittersweetness and cloying sweetness in the end, perhaps some rottenish fruit presence as well, but it is mostly hops and it isn't overly sweet.

The mouthfeel is a bit cloying and a bit thin for my liking.

This is an interesting brew that is suitable for hop lovers when fresh.

Photo of jpro
4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 4-pk at Brawley's in Charlotte...

A: Poured into a shaped Dogfish Head pint glass... a striking red with some tea-like coloration; a pretty tame pour yields a two finger, cream colored head that leaves some sudsy lace and manages impressive retention.

S: Piney hops, with a touch of some herby dank-ness; malt sweetness; toasted grains and dark bread crust.

T: Piney hop bitterness dominates, along with some resin; slightly nutty sweet caramel malt - with some faint hints of roasted grain; the sweetness provides nice balance.

M: Slightly less than moderate carbonation level and kind of thin; a touch oily; very crisp and clean... This is where this beer falls short for me - I think I'd enjoy it more if there was a little more mouthfeel there.

D: Enjoyable and very drinkable; the one good thing about the thin mouthfeel (I guess) is that it lends to an easier drinking brew; a nice choice for cooler weather and another good one from Great Lakes!

Photo of emmasdad
3.68/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Having wanted to try this one for quite a while, I was glad to pull this one from a trade package earlier this week. Poured from the bottle a dark red color with a little bit of off-white foam. Aromas of candi sugar, sweet malt and light hops. On the palate this one is medium bodied, with good carbonation, caramel, sweet malt, some citrusy hops and a candy sweet finish.

Photo of NODAK
3.58/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nose has a good mix of pine hops and some sweet, caramel malt as an undercurrent.

Pours a deep red in the glass; decent head.

Taste is of pretty strong pine cone hops, resonating in an oily way along with some grapefruit. Then near the finish a somewhat sweet and caramelly malt presence comes in with a little hint of sweet biscuit, but make no mistake that the hops rule this one. They linger a while after the swallow.

Reminds me of another famous beer of this style (AB), but hoppier.

Photo of rembrant
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

perhaps best served at 98.6 f while viewing werner herzog's film of the same name. am i bloodthirsty enough to drink a brew so red and wicked?
were any virgins violated in the making of this?
will it make me a creature of the night?

The villagers fear this,they cling to their pathetic adjunct corn beer and make futile cross signs with their fingers.

I thirst for fear> I grab the neck,aggressively,decapitate this hollow vessel and let it's precious fluids bleed out into my goblet.

it is red

like beer with a few tablespoons of human blood. there's a short lived head. life is so short...hazy..like english fog,but with blood in it.

aroma--citrus,dark fruits,a hint of yeast,a hint of caramel,a hint of dark secrets i should never hear.

flavors--- sort of a rich lead in with a sweet lure to bring me to ruin. it shifts,cunningly,into a citric,grapefruit bite and the deed is finished. a trickster? a monster? no. it would seem this creature has a good heart.
a bit more malt side than a typical ipa,and the ample hops, grapefruit and pine/evergreen give it a charachter of dark cascadian or a robust dipa. there's another kind of earthy/woody something i can't pin down, not big like a wooden stake to the heart,subtle like just a big splinter.
altogether seductively tasty. one can not taste blood nor bats nor pure evil in this.

mouth feels right...the bite is gentle and with sweetness,and all as smooth as a velvet cape. it says "stock ale". it resembles "red rocket". the hop finish is well done.

drinkability would i risk my soul for one more? probably.

Great Lakes Nosferatu from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,300 ratings.