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Great Lakes Nosferatu - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes NosferatuGreat Lakes Nosferatu

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,132 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,132
Reviews: 846
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 10.51%
Wants: 195
Gots: 185 | FT: 8
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:
Imperial Red Ale

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-19-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,132 | Reviews: 846 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Reagan1984
4.13/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cheers to cooncat for providing this in a recent trade. (Great trader)

What a great looking beer. The head was creamy, 2 fingers thick and demonstrated excellent retention. The beer itself was a deep amber color with ruby red highlights. Some nice lacing clung to the inside of the glass. Wonderful visual beer. Just a scant touch of visible carbonation...

Aroma was a nice as the visual. Surprisingly hoppy with floral and citrus notes. It's reminding me a bit of Arrogant Bastard at this point. Just for clarity, that's quite a compliment coming from me... Some nice toasted malt or dark bread notes as well.. Some ripe pineapple perhaps.

Flavor is bold, smooth and very inviting. Moment of malt sweetness right up front then moves through some nice fruit flavors. Bang, at this point the citrus hops kick in and the grapefruit comes to town. As this fades some nice malt notes (crusty bread) come out and play.... Then off to the lingering hop bitterness that more resembles some pine notes.

Mouth feel is just shy of creamy. Medium to full bodied and silky smooth. Carbonation is slight and this really works.

Damn it, I only have one bottle!!! = Yes, very drinkable.

Excellent brew and I am very happy to have gotten the opportunity to try it.

Seek this out.

Reagan1984, Jan 09, 2009
Photo of BuffaloTapHugger
3.85/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured out a dark caramel color with a frothy head and tons of carbonation. Not much to report about smell, very minimal and more toward to earthy side.

Sip. High alcohol noticeable from the get go. Nice on the pallet, and finished clean, with an aftertaste of a typical strong ale.

Not really a beer that I would have in a session, but could be done if you had the time. I recommend for a nice cap on a winters day/night.

BuffaloTapHugger, Jan 01, 2009
Photo of Slatetank
4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thanks to brewdlyhooked13 for this -poured just cooler than cellar temp into my La Fin Du Monde Tulip

A - A beautiful flame red/orange w/ more than two fingers of dense tan head comprised of tiny bubbles. The beer is hazed lightly from hops and chill, but has a resplendent glow and with the rocky cream on the surface it simply beckons for a s smell as the lace collects on the glass

S - Fruity with tangerine, clementine and lemon zest. The hops really give the nose dimension w/ a fragrant citrus as the malt and mild ale yeast esters give the aroma a substantial full scent w/ a mild malt sweetness and subtle pine notes

M - A crisp carbonation w/ mild citrus bitterness and simple sweet malt/hop combination w/ a quite clean finish and residual sappy smooth edge.

T - As the beer hits the tongue it is mainly citrus rind flavored w/ a nice caramel malt flavor allowing for the hop bitterness and citrus flavor to be balanced and sweet. The subtle bready flavor combines w/ a tangerine, valencia orange, ruby red and mild spiced notes. The slight pine sap flavor comes in the background w/ a mild smooth taste/texture. A red fruit taste resonates w/ a bit of berry and mild crystal malt comes forward as it warms. There is a honeyed lemon flavor and malty toasted flavors coming out with nice round edges and hints of yeast noted in the last sips

D - A phenomenal strong ale - great synergy and just doesn't taste like 8%. This is something I could drink year round - the hoppy red style, like an IPA is one I can't seem to tire of and I consider this to be one of the best in the pack.

Slatetank, Dec 28, 2008
Photo of sonicdescent
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks and smells like a spiked Iced tea. The smell is fairly weak.

Taste actually has some of that tea characteristic but first hits you with a blast of hops that is well balanced and doesn't leave you too bitter. Rather enjoyable and masks it's alcohol content well. Medium body and low carbonation.

sonicdescent, Dec 27, 2008
Photo of beeristhefuture
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

This beer is a fine example of a good red ale. It's flavorful, with lots of strong hop taste (more than cascade!), and the caramel and crystal malts buck up the typically thin mouthfeel Great Lakes beers tend to have. It's a shame this brew's only a seasonal; it'd be one I'd have readily available otherwise. It should be noted that because of the high sugar levels and thin mouthfeel I can't give it superlative ratings. It is a great beer, though.

beeristhefuture, Dec 24, 2008
Photo of curasowa
3.15/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Served from a 12oz bottle out of a 4-pac, best before date of 12/22.

Poured a cloudy, amber color with just a 1/4" head that lingered quite a while. The smell was slightly sweet, maybe a bit of brown sugar and a hint of floral in there too. Very full bodied, almost syrupy with some nice bitterness and a slightly lingering finish. Some roasted flavor is in there as well, showing up more in the finish.

Overall a pretty good beer, but not what I was expecting from a stock ale. I would call this more of a strong American craft ale than anything else.

curasowa, Dec 19, 2008
Photo of jwinship83
4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from this year consumed just after the best by date.

A- clear deep red colored body under a solid finger and a half of creamy off white head that quickly reduces to a film over the top of the glass. a solid wall of lacing is left along the sides of the glass.

S- very hoppy. lots of citrus and pine notes. alot of sweet caramel malt to back it up.

T- this one tastes almost the same as it smells. lots of sweet caramel malt upfront followed by a blast of citrus and piny hops. very well balanced. not a trace of alcohol.

M- light to medium bodied with ample carbonation.

D- i could easily have several of these in a sitting. a great hoppy amber. too bad this one is only a seasonal. check it out if you havnt had it yet.

jwinship83, Dec 17, 2008
Photo of Ineedabeerhere
3.48/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Received in a trade from GbvDave- thanks again!

bottle dated "Drink by 12/5/07"- oops!

Poured into DFH snifter forming a 1 finger head. Upon swirling, Released a somewhat piney-aroma forming a larger, creamy, light caramel colored head on top of a dark amber colored brew. How does this still have any hop characteristics?

The body was mostly malty though, nice caramel, toffee, maybe a bit nutty but overall pretty rich, creamy and slightly sweet. I enjoyed this brew. Glad I got two of them, I'll let the other one go for a little longer and see what happens. It was definitely a solid brew, even at this age, with a nice label to boot.

Ineedabeerhere, Dec 16, 2008
Photo of johnnnniee
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled 12/12/08 best by 12/03/08
Received in trade from Prototypic, thanks for the opportunity.

Pours a beautifully clear red copper color with a smallish bubbly off white head that leaves mad lace on the way down. Smells of citrus, grapefruit, heavy hop aroma. Slight caramel in back if I strain my nose a bit. Taste is caramel malt up front, grapefruit and hops mid to finish and linger on for a bit. The taste isn't as bitter as the aroma leads you to believe. Creamy oily mouthfeel, thick body, moderate carbonation. Great stock ale. Lots of hops but some malt to back it up.

johnnnniee, Dec 13, 2008
Photo of MrMonkey
4.35/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear reddish amber with a creamy one-finger light tan head that fades slowly leaving thick lacing at the top of my snifter.

Smell is piny, resinous hops, toffee, and dried apricots.

Taste is piny hops up front, followed by some peach and green apple. Dried apricots, sweet caramel and toffee, and chewy bready malts lead back into some piny hops for a bitter finish.

Medium to full-bodied mouthfeel. It coats the mouth, but the carbonation keeps it lively.

Very drinkable, but definitely a sipper.

MrMonkey, Dec 11, 2008
Photo of Onenote81
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great extra received from Auslander. I tell you what, this right here is my favorite offering from Great Lakes. Wonderful brew.

Pours a deep amber color with a large frothy tan head. This disappears for the most part but leaves plenty of sticky lacing/webbing. Beautiful. Smells of citrusy hops, some slight alcohol and fruit.

Great tasting beer! I'm getting some apple, pear, alcohol, all sweetened just right and then capped off with a huge hop backing! Freaking great. Nice crisp mouthfeel that doesn't bite back, mellowed alcohol presence that is barely detectable, makes this plenty drinkable.

Thanks, Auslander, for introducing me to now one of my favorite brews...that I can't get locally. Double dang!

Onenote81, Dec 11, 2008
Photo of largadeer
3.8/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this one as an extra from bakerslp - thanks.

Appearance: Dark but semi-clear, amber-colored. Pours with a great big fluffy tan head, great retention, tons of sticky lace. Nice.

Smell: Rich and sweet, a big malt backbone with notes of pine and grapefruit from the hops. Slightly fruity. Reminds me a whole lot of Arrogant Bastard, but not as clean.

Taste & mouthfeel: A nice mix of chewy malt and resiny hop flavor, with malt taking the slight edge. Rich caramel sweetness and a touch of pineapple precede the oily, bitter finish. Full-bodied, a bit too heavy on the residual sugars for my liking, but a very nice beer all the same.

largadeer, Dec 04, 2008
Photo of ahalloin
3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle purchased in Toldeo, OH. Pours a beautiful dark mahogony color with a luscious light tan head of about two fingers width. The lacing is clinging to the glass as the head recedes slowly.

The medium strength aroma has qualities of citrus, pine, and alcohol with hints of brown sugar and raisins in the background.

The flavor is big and potent. The nose is big and malty with flavors of dark malts, fermented fruit, and brown sugar. The flavor morphs into an extremely spicy (almost burning) finish of piney and citrusy hops. Awesome!

This beer isn't for everyone but for most afficiando's it will garner respect.

ahalloin, Dec 04, 2008
Photo of IBUnit63
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From 12 oz. into Duvel tulip (11/23/2008) after a long more-or-less-all-day schlep from Buffalo to Hagerstown, MD, relaxing in a hotel room watching Sunday Night Football...not sure of the BBD at the moment but it was not past, as were quite a few of the BBDs I noticed at the purchase point (Premier Gourmet in Buffalo, BY)

Pours a clean, dark bourbon brown with a chewy, chunky butter-colored head. Solid lacing and seam with a hint of carbonation.

A lot more apple than expected...carbonation makes it light and tingly. Piney hops, melon and some alcohol. You gotta lot going here.

Huh...much more earth than expected. Hops emerge in spades, but less pine and more grass. Oaky, caramel malt in the background.

With warmth this retains a nice grassy hop bite with a full malt backbone. Finish is even but maybe a little hot. A lot drier than the nose would indicate.

Interesting stuff for a nighttime sipper; promise of the noses does not entirely deliver, though. Overall a lot less sweetness on the palate than the well-balanced aroma would indicate. Maybe I'll keep 1 or 2 of these down for a bit and see what happens.

IBUnit63, Dec 03, 2008
Photo of Shumista
4.35/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into my Maudite snifter.

A- Nosferatu pours a dark reddish brown, with a 2 finger light tan head resulting from an aggressive pour that stuck around for close to 5 minutes. Lots of lacing on the sides of the glass as this one is drank.
S- Hops dominate the aroma with some malt in the background. I could mistake this for a malty IPA if it wasn't for the label.
T- Overall, a very clean taste. Lots of fresh hops that are citrusy and bitter. The sweet caramel malts take a backseat as in the aroma but are definitely there backing up the hops. As I've been noticing with a lot of brewery's as I try more and more beers from a single one, there is something similar in the flavor of this to other Great Lakes beers I've had. I think it is most similar to their Commodore Perry IPA.
M- Medium bodied, good amount of carbonation.
D- I would probably have thought 6 or 6.5% as opposed to 8%. I get no alcohol in the taste nor do I get much alcohol warmth. Highly drinkable.

Shumista, Dec 03, 2008
Photo of KarlHungus
3.63/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a hazy dark amber color. The head is an inch and a half in height, and recedes very slowly into a firm half inch cap of lacing which sticks around until the beer is gone. The aroma is piney hops and caramel malt. The taste is quite a bit hoppier than the aroma. Tons of pine, with hints of grapefruit, and nice undertones of caramel. The mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with lively carbonation. Overall, this is a nice beer that I could easily drink again.

KarlHungus, Dec 03, 2008
Photo of Morey
4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer has a nice looking tan head sitting atop of a deep blood red ale. Smells of ripe fruit and hops.

Very complex taste that you just can't quite put your finger on. It has a slight fruity taste (although it's not brewed with any that I know of), but it's balanced well with the hops and malts.

There's some nice clinging action going on as I down this tasty brew. I wish that this beer was around longer than it is (early oct-nov). It's hard to find if you're not from Cleveland, and it's only sold in 4pks.

Morey's bottom line: A very unique and tasty beer. Probably the hoppiest strong/stock ale that I've ever had. I had it on-tap once, and it was even better.

Morey, Nov 29, 2008
Photo of MacDomer
4.33/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a clear, deep ruby color with hints of brown. Minimal light tan head which quickly recedes, leaving a small band circling the glass.

S - Opens with flowery hops, some grapefruit and pineapple, a touch of caramel and sweet cherries.

T - Lots of big, falvorful hops up front, citrus mostly. Then comes some pale and caramel malts but they don't quite balance this one out. A bit of candied orange peel. Finishes dry with grapefruit hops.

M - The medium body coats the mouth. Moderate carbonation helps it flow smoothly.

D - Alcohol is very well hidden - tastes and feels like a 6% to me. I could have 3 or 4 of these in a session. Really like it!

MacDomer, Nov 28, 2008
Photo of sgoodship
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

My friend Brian gave me this. Cheers Brian! Already reviewed this on-tap when I visited Great Lakes. I wanted to review the bottle to see how they stack up against each other.

On-tap review I said:
A: Nice dark reddish bronze colored ale. Some ruby redness on the edges against the light. Poured a nice 1 finger white fluffy head that reduced to a nice small cap. Very attractive brew.

Bottle: Not as deep and not as ruby highlights as I remember from the on-tap. Hazy, mysterious and moody - fitting for the name of the drink!

On-tap review I said:
S: Holy smokes - massive hops. Mix of bitter and fruit. Really impressive smell. A more floral note arose toward the end of the drink. You can detect the strength but does not have a strong alcohol smell.

Bottle: Not the impact of on-tap. Rum-like alcohol came across immediately. Hops are there but not that impactful.

On-tap review I said:
T: As you would expect, a touch of caramel malt to keep it grounded but a wallop of hops. Some powerful bitterness with amazingly succulent grapefruit. Really chewy - plenty of interest. The alcohol is there and gives you a nice warming sensation - amazingly well masked.

Bottle: Bigger malt and less hop than the on-tap. Has a cloying sour aftertaste.

On-tap review I said:
M: Medium carbonation gave this quite a bit of life. Was fairly smooth but the finish delivers a bit of an acidic bite.

Bottle: Pretty much the same. Aftertaste is more aggressive and acidic.

On-tap review I said:
D: It's a masterful brew. Really powerful. It would be so easy for it to go off the deep end but it all holds together in a fantastically well coordinated way. The high drinkability and high ABV make this a dangerous brew. It packs a punch.

Bottle: I gave on-tap an A. The bottle falls short. A part of the impact of the on-tap was how big malt and hops were and how well balanced it all was. The lack of hops in the bottle throws off the balance and allows the alcohol to have too much focus. Still a really enjoyable and interesting beer. Like always, once you try on-tap, it's tough to go back to the bottle.

sgoodship, Nov 28, 2008
Photo of Haybeerman
3.9/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Light amber color. Poured a 2 finger white head with fair retention. Light lacing. Decanted continually.

S: Big floral hop aroma and citrus aromas.

T: Sweet, flavorful lightly roasted malts. Significan hop flavor throughout and in finish.

M: Full side of medium body. Ample carbonation. Warming alcohol.

D: Very drinkable in moderation; combination of ABV, big body and carbonation.

Haybeerman, Nov 19, 2008
Photo of DefenCorps
3.68/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I received a couple of bottles of the 2008 release from SQNfan and moose3285 (I think). Also received a 2007 bottle from MiScusi and that one resides in the cellar for now. Into my 22oz snifter

A: Pours a crystal clear deep crimson with a beige head that recedes rather quickly to a ring. Some carbonation is visible. The color and clarity alone make for an appealing beer.

S: Citrus hops jump out front with orange, grapefruit and sharp pine notes. Despite sitting on this for a few months, the hops are remarkably pronounced and have a very fresh aroma, not unlike cut grass. There is some mild malt sweetness in the back as well as a hint of alcohol. Pretty solid

T: Aggressive hops open up this beer with citrus and pine bitterness. The citrus notes are reminiscent of bitter orange rind. In fact, hops are about all I can taste in this beer - bitter, bitter Cascade hops. There's a hint of malt sweetness in the back with dark fruit and honey before a rather huge cascade hop bitterness takes over on the finish, drying out the palate

M: Surprisingly over the top in hop character, there's adequate carbonation and a nice dryness on the finish

D: Pretty solid, the bitterness does take away a bit from the drinkability, though.

DefenCorps, Nov 17, 2008
Photo of Bitterbill
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this bottle in a trade with TATTORSO. Thanks Jeff!

This pours a clear deep red/amber with a small and quickly disappearing head of foam.

The smell has some nice bready notes along with some grassy hops. Also after a few more whiffs, I get some fruity tones. Nice nose.

The taste is grassy hops up front with some sweetish malty notes moving in, some graininess, and a fruity character. It's a little on the tart side with the fruit so I'm guessing black cherries. There's also almost a cinnamon type twang here that works well with all of the other flavours. Some alcohol noticeable here as I get a nice warming after the swallow.

The mouthfeel is medium as is the carbonation, and it finishes grassy hop style. Good taster and I don't think I've had brews that come close to reminding me of this. I like this one a lot!

Bitterbill, Nov 12, 2008
Photo of LordofTime25
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice clear amber color with a big off-white head that last till your done drinking with good lacing.

You can smell lots of caramel malts with a subtle hop spice aroma.

You can taste the caramel malts as you drink and it finishes with a spicy bitterness too it.

A medium bodied beer with a average carbonation!

A delicious beer!

LordofTime25, Nov 08, 2008
Photo of Dalem
2.78/5  rDev -32%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

No, this beer isn't bloody looking or anything but it is sharp clear red in color. Once inch head that fades a bit but still sticks around pretty healthily and all kinds of thick lacing all the way through. Aroma's are subtle here. A bit of hops, a strawberry tinge and dark malts are what my this nose is noticing.
The flavors in the brew itself are much more pronounced than they are in the scent. There's a huge malt sweetness up front then a ESB like bitterness shows up soon afterwards with more that a dint of alcohol hotness in the end. Firm, creamy body but overall though not a whole lot of complexities and something seems just not there. Maybe it's the weird spicy bitters characteristics that stick around too much that are leaving me a little put off.

Dalem, Nov 08, 2008
Photo of cooncat
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Serving from an in date bottle, decanted into a 20 oz. stein (to allow for head space).

On the pour you get a beautiful and huge light mocha colored head, of prodigious size (2 fingers at least), sitting atop a blood red brew. Very becoming of its name and heritage. Copious amounts of lacing a spashed all over the sides of the glass, and the head *is* long lasting. Wonderful!

The nose is nice a malty to me, biscuits and perhaps fresh bread mixed in. Just a light hop presence in the nose.

The taste is so creamy smooth and full. Yes, the malts are there, but also some dark fruit and a bit of citrus hops .. very well balanced, but leaning to the malt side. Mouthfeel is incredibly full .. almost chewy. The 8% abv is well hidden in this beer .. very well hidden. It is exceptionally drinkable, but before you know it, if you persist in quaffing several (which is quite easy), you will feel as light headed as the victim of a vampire.

This is a beer I relish each year it comes out. It is such an awesome brew, as are most Great Lakes offerings. The taste and mouthfeel will keep you calling out for more, MORE! By all means, seek this one out when it is in seaon (comes out Sept/Oct). This one will NOT disappoint! Well done Great Lakes!

Na Zdravje!

cooncat, Nov 07, 2008
Great Lakes Nosferatu from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,132 ratings.