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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.

2,142 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,142
Reviews: 847
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 10.78%
Wants: 196
Gots: 189 | 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: 2,142 | Reviews: 847 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of IronCitySteve
4.28/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured a deep blood red, fitting the name of the beer, with ample lacing

S: A piney/grassy hop smell with a pretty good hint of roasted caramel malt lingering in the background

T: The pine hops are the main taste with a hint of caramel and toasted malts

M&D: Medium body beer, with a bitter finish.

IronCitySteve, Apr 22, 2008
Photo of dazdave
3.73/5  rDev -8.6%
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.

dazdave, Apr 15, 2008
Photo of MiguelMandingo
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to JDV for hooking me up with this bottle! This was my first GL beer, and I must say - I'm impressed. Good stuff.

Poured a 12oz. bottle into a snifter.

Appearance - Reddish amber brown in color, mostly transparent. It produced a solid 2 finger head and had great retention. It left behind a ton of lacing. This is a fine looking brew.

Smell - Floral hops is the first thing I can smell, along with toffee, burnt sugar, caramel and booze. I like where this is going...

Taste - The taste is very similar to the scent. Slightly sweet with lots of hops along with a nice, slight roastiness.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied. While this brew is very creamy, it also has a great carbonation level - prickly over the tongue.

Drinkability - This a great brew. It is very easy drinking. I will definitely search this one out again.

MiguelMandingo, Mar 25, 2008
Photo of skizziks
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle marked best by Nov. 2007. I assume this beer can handle a few months extra age on it.

About one inch of dense amber foam. Good retention and lacing. A nice layer persists throughout the glass. The beer is a clear and bright reddish copper.

Aroma is bright juicy citric hops just edging out the bready biscuity malts.

Flavor is immediately complex with caramel and bready malts, red apples, strong herbal hop flavors and dried cherries all hitting at once. A sharp bitterness emerges through the middle towards a long finish that opens up to a light fruit candy aftertaste. Very complex. very tasty. The intense bitterness may give it a "bite" but it does wear on the palate after a while. A minor complaint in the grand scheme of this beer. The alcohol is not overwhelming but does become more apparent as it warms.

Smooth, rich, full body with medium-low carbonation. Very satisfying and pretty drinkable considering. Would be truly excellent with a few less IBUs.

skizziks, Mar 23, 2008
Photo of Nipitato
3.78/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Purchased a 4 pack at Rozi's Wine House in Lakewood, OH.

A: Awesome name and an awesome bottle image. Dark reddish brown. No head. Good clarity.

S: Sweet and fruity (tropical fruits) with an overall citrusy hoppy aroma.

T: Citrus hop flavor is strong. Long lingering bitter aftertaste, which masks the alcohol content well. I found this taste to be pretty one dimensional - not a ton of malt character.

MF: Medium body. Nearly slick. Light carbonation.

D, notes: This is definitely a sipping ber. I would have liked a little more malt balance.

Nipitato, Mar 18, 2008
Photo of ommegoose
4.45/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle purchased at Binny's in Skokie. $1.69 in the clearance bin. Price sticker posted on top of the freshness date of 11/15/07. (Thanks for being honest guys!) Since this is an 8% brew, I'm guessing it will hold up better than the Harborside Lagers in the bin.

I served this one pretty warm. Recommended at 50 degrees.

Poured in a goblet. Creamy, foamy head lingers at a quarter inch. Deep red color is attractive. The vampire theme suits it nicely. The lacing is of a healthy quantity, leaving a wall down the other half of the glass. Leaves a large ring towards the end, and leaves just a film on top. Well done overall.

Smells sweet and creamy. Nice amount of hops in the aroma too. Hallertau maybe? A little piney, and a hint of citrus fruit.

I like this one. Starts off with sweet caramel maltiness, and a ample amount of slightly piney hops, which linger long and spicy on the finish. The bitter fruitiness is a surprise. Grapefruit and orange rind. I'm guessing that this has mellowed a bit in age, which I won't hold against it. This strikes the right malt/hop balance, and it's not afraid to be sweet.

Mouthfeel is surprisingly soft and silky. Barely a trace of alcohol. I don't know what else to ask for here.

My glass was down to halfway just a few sentences in to this one. Goes down way too easy. I really want another one, and regret not digging out that entire bin for the remainder of these. As you can see by these scores, I wouldn't have any reservations about aging this beer. It's delicious. This reminds me quite a bit of Southern Tier's Big Red, although this is a bit more toned-down. This could be the aging speaking. Will definitely appeal to fans of red beers.

ommegoose, Mar 12, 2008
Photo of JDV
3.78/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to miketd for this great bonused beer!
Transluscent maroon colored pour with a yellowish-beige head. Smell is sweet, bright fresh hoppiness. Very nice. Taste is creamy and smooth at first sip with a nice big hop kick, mild bitterness, and ample malt backing. Tastes like slightly alcoholic hopped melted caramel squares. Unique, very drinkable, and just writing about it now makes me want the other I've got waiting for me. Nice beer all around and I can see upping it a notch or two on a rerate.

JDV, Mar 01, 2008
Photo of jasonjlewis
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a 1 1/2 finger head with decent retention. Cloudy ruby red color.

Smell is of apple juic and grapefruit. Caramel malts come out strongly as well.

Fruity esters mix with some nice caramel malting balanced by an assertive citrusy bitterness. Apple phenols and grapefruit and grapes come out to make an intersting ale.

Decent full mouthfeel. Adequate low carbonation.

The fruity estes add a nice complexity to this beer while maintaining a nice balance. I will visit this brew again.

jasonjlewis, Feb 19, 2008
Photo of srandycarter
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Two reviews here. The score is based on the second, within freshness date.
Freshness date passed - 12.17.07

A - Dark Amber body, Small head leaves fast. Lacing like sticky glue.

S - Toffee, burnt caramel, hop relief.

T - Much as smell. Deep thick burnt malt flavors, finished with bitter hops.

M - Coating, pleasing, filling, good carb.

D - Nice beer.
Freshness date 12.03.08

A - Dark Amber body, offwhite small head leaves fast to small disk. Lacing like sticky glue.

S - Toffee, sweet caramel, hop relief.

T - Much as smell. Deep thick sweet malt flavors, finished with bitter hops.

M - Coating, pleasing, filling, good carb.

D - Nice beer.
Same beer, pretty much, just more intense the second time.


srandycarter, Feb 17, 2008
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very slightly fogged brown amber with a yellow/tannish head. It slowly falls and leaves a fairly large amount of lacing on the way down. Nose is malty caramel with a minor earthy edge and also a minor alcohol tone as well. Flavor is unusually dry. It almost seems like this is wood aged. Just loads upon loads of wood. Barely noticeable alcohol. Feel is fairly full bodied on the liquid and has a bit of a biting carbonation as well. For being so high in abv and also being "the beer with bite", this one goes down very smooth.

RblWthACoz, Feb 03, 2008
Photo of gkatsoris
3.38/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Classy. Rich, deep cherry brown. W/ the slightest hue of red. The head was white w/ the littlest bubbles.

S: Sweet, sweet hops. Very different from the citrus hops I'm used to living on the east coast. Honey. Slight cherry, and slight vanilla.

T: Bitter. Oak. Musty. Burnt Caramel. Vanilla. Cherry. A little unbalanced.

M: A little carbonated. Unbalanced bitter. Very crisp and tight.

D: Very disappointing, especially after loving the appearance and smell, the taste and mouth feel.

gkatsoris, Feb 02, 2008
Photo of prototypic
4.05/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: It's transparent and deep red in color. Head is slightly off white and a massive two and half fingers deep. Excellent retention and lacing.

Smell: Very rich, sweet, and malty. Hops are mostly piney though not overly strong. Light notes of dark fruit and spices. Very faint oaked aroma on the tail.

Taste: Initially sweet and malty. Hops are piney and provide some balance, but it's more of a malty beer. Some citrus notes emerge that were not apparent in smell (grapefruit and pineapple). Nice mix with dark fruit flavors. Slightly biscuity aftertaste.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's medium bodied and very, very smooth. Carbonation is excellent. Very drinkable despite its somewhat high abv. Very nice offering from Great Lakes. If only it were available year round....

prototypic, Jan 29, 2008
Photo of bobhits
4.78/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I hate the term strong american ale as it just leaves so much to the imagination. This beer is like a strong ale meets an IPA and they had a kid. This is by far my favorite beer by great lakes (why do I always like the expensive beers?). I really don't feel like I can put words to how great this beer is.

For taste I wish I were better at explaining different hops but the hops come through as just bitter. You don't get that awful grape fruit flavor that many IPA's are using today. This is mixed with a strong ale (reminds me a bit of third coast ale) instead of the normal strong malt finish of say 90 minute you get a nice crisp yet sweet finish with a nice bit of alcohol backing it. For a beer of this size and strength the mouthfeel and drink ability match it perfectly. You can easily drink 2-3 of these without realizing it yet even on the first you know that you probably shouldn't keep drinking them all day.

bobhits, Jan 21, 2008
Photo of elmore
4.4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz into a chalice. Light one finger head with decent retention. Some nice lacing. Dark amber color.

Not an overpowering smell. A mixture of sweet malts, caramel, some floral, piney hops. Taste is similar to smell. Very balanced taste. Almost reminds me of an Oktoberfest upfront with the carmel malts, but the moderate hops bite comes through later in the aftertaste reminiscent of an IPA. ABV is not evident in taste or feel.

Very well balanced beer. I would describe this as an IPA with a greater than usual carmel malt prescence, if that makes sense. I like the mix of the carmel-like sweet malts with fairly strong hops prescence, which is unique. Very drinkable as the ABV is well hidden.

elmore, Jan 20, 2008
Photo of RustyDiamond
4.15/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to orfteu for this beer!
Poured a gorgeous reddish-amber with 2 fingers of glisteny beige head. Aroma of...malty leather? Taste was nice and layered with a big hoppy flavor, slighty nutty and very clean. Sharp hop bitterness in the mouth along with a sweet toffee malt flavor.
I'd love to do a blind tasting of this along with Big Hoppy Monster, Lagunitas Impy Red and Hop Rod Rye.

RustyDiamond, Jan 15, 2008
Photo of shaebs99
4.45/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ahatcher78 for this extra

A: Pours a clear copper color with large head that leaves behind nice lacing

S: Aroma is largely malty/caramel, but with some hop bite

T: Large malty taste balanced nicely by some hop bitterness (piney and fruity)

D: complex beer, but still highly drinkable. surprised to see that this was 8%. Will seek this out again

shaebs99, Jan 10, 2008
Photo of Tilley4
4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm revisiting this one as I had an aged bottle the first time and this is much better fresh...

Sort of a reddish amber in the glass, Nosferatu smells in your face hoppy and piney and sweet all at the same time...
Smooth balanced tastes of piney oily hops and a sweet caramel malt that finishes with a lingering oily sweetness that's a touch bitter... Makes you want to take sip after sip of this one...

This is one I will be on the lookout for annually as its a nice change from the Marzens and pumpkin ales that abound this time of year.

Tilley4, Dec 28, 2007
Photo of HopDerek
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear rich red/copper color with soapy off-white head and good lacing. Smells of citrus, toasted malt, and some caramel sweetness. Caramel sweet up front cut off sharply by an attack of grapefruit. Some spices mix in along with a slightly warm alcohol presence. Medium in body with good carbonation and a good hop stick to the palate. A good ale, similar to Arrogant Bastard, but a little more grapefruity, almost seems more like it should be an Imperial IPA than a strong ale.

HopDerek, Dec 27, 2007
Photo of enfield249
3.48/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Clear copper, slim off white foam head, about 1 1/2 fingers.

S - Lots of floral hops in the aroma. Little bit of sweetness in the back ground.

T - Hoppy, but not like an IPA. There is way more aroma the bittering hops it tastes like. In the back ground is some nice malty sweetness.

M - Medium, with some decent sparkle from the carbonation.

D - A really nice beer, but I would almost class it as an IPA or PA, and less of a stock ale. Didn't have any of the alcohol burn I would expect with a stock ale.

enfield249, Dec 26, 2007
Photo of Pauly2X
3.8/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- Clear rich red amber beneath a two finger head,

S- A strong yet smooth blast of noble hops.

T- Much like the label says, this ones got a nice bite. Otherwise a good solid american ale.

M- Rich and smooth, nice.

D- The four pack its sold in is enough.

A great beer to scrath a hop itch if you've grown tired of the IPA's.

Pauly2X, Dec 23, 2007
Photo of Slynger
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a beautifully clear ruby copper color with a creamy whitish head that holds a tinge of orange. Sticky lace clings to the glass.
Smells of piney and citrus hops, sweet caramel malts and a slight earthiness.
Mmm, creamy and smooth. Slightly sweet and sharp orange and pine. Light caramel malts with roasted nutty / spicy overtones and a bitter hops finish with slightly warming alcohol. I can't even think of any words for the mouthfeel, just incredible.
Great lakes brews awesome beer and this is right up with the best of them.

Slynger, Dec 22, 2007
Photo of CDBeerDisappear
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful and notable clear red amber color with half inch head of finely bubble foam, plenty of lacing. Gentle aroma of hops and malt with a surprising mouthful of flavor. Tastes sweet at first but the sweetness is backed of by a pile of hoppy bitterness. To my tastes this is very nicely balanced. A full mouthfeel with fine prickly carbonation that leaves you wanting more of this fine ale. If I was drinking this blind I would call it an IPA the next thing I would call for would be another one.

CDBeerDisappear, Dec 18, 2007
Photo of stewart124
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep reddish beer with slight orange hues. Off white head that appears to be dense and sticky.

Caramel malts add a sweetness to this old ale and citrus hops hit the nose as well. Also note the bits of fruit that are present.

Bits of pine and sharp citrus fruits in this hop filled ale. I wasn’t expecting this from Great Lakes's take on an old ale. Seems to touch close to an IPA but maybe a bit sweeter and fuller in body. I taste sweet bits of pear from the caramel malts. It blends well with the sweet malts and the hops add a crispness that just brings it all together. Columbus and chinnook hops in this one I am guessing.

Very nicely done and I like this better in the bottle as opposed to the previous drafts I have had. Seems to be hoppier and not as much residual sweetness.

Drinkability is high and this is quite tasty. Once again, nicely done by Great Lakes.

stewart124, Dec 16, 2007
Photo of brentk56
4.73/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Features an amber color with a great head that sheets the pint glass with lace

Smell: Caramel aromatics with plenty of grapefruity citrus

Taste: The caramel base that is present up front is quickly subsumed by a building grapefruit flavor; after the swallow, there is a burst of grapefruit that ultimately blends with the caramel to provide a balanced finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: A really fine ale that balances nicely between the malt and the hops

brentk56, Dec 12, 2007
Photo of demcorhip
3.3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to mcallister for this one. Silly me, forgot all about this beer, says to enjoy by about a year ago. Nice, sticky, fine and intricate lacings.

Looks good, a slightly bloodied amber colour. Decent slightly ruddy pale tan head.

Big toffee and toast nose, with some cherry. Mild hop aromas with some woodiness, and a touch of citrus and grass.

Toast and rich toffee. Probably should have enjoyed this earlier, has a mildly annoying cherry, vinous quality that i suspect has to do with oxidizing malts. The hop bitterness is surprisingly pronounced considering how the malts dominated the nose. A clean, slightly woody hop bitterness gives way to more flavourful accents of citrus and pine.

Medium bodied, mildly carbonated and nicely balanced. A touch of astringency that plays nicely with residual malt sweetness and slight yeasty mustiness. Ill have to enjoy this fresh some day.

Pretty drinkable for an ale with 8% abv. Hints of alcohol warmth. The only thing limiting the drinkability is the fact that i probably should have enjoyed this brew a year ago. An interesting strong ale, one that i will have to revisit.

This was tough to rate. Didnt look at other reviews to see if what i feel are off flavours are present in fresher tasting or not. I went nice on this brew as i suspect the off flavours present were my fault for sitting on this too long.

demcorhip, Dec 08, 2007
Great Lakes Nosferatu from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,142 ratings.