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Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Great Lakes Dortmunder GoldGreat Lakes Dortmunder Gold

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,224 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2224
Reviews: 992
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 11.52%

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Dortmunder / Export Lager |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: pezoids on 09-18-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,224 | Reviews: 992 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Bighuge


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

11-18-08 edit:

I'm upping my rating from a 4.85 to a 5.0. Everytime I have this beer, it seems better. No other Dortmunder has been as perfect as this one over the past 10 or so years I've been tasting beer. This one deserves a 5.0.

This beer is perfectly clear and perfectly golden. Carbonation is evident in the form of gaseous bubbles surfacing at a good clip. A beautiful frothy white head tops this gorgeous looking brew. A nice clean malt aroma is present. The malt profile in this brew is exceptionally clean. The beer has a nice subdued toastiness. Good biscuit notes. Hop notes and bitterness are at a minimum, but they are there and blend in nicely in the background. The balance of this beer is impeccable. Body is medium at most and the beer is very drinkable. Highly enjoyable lager. This beer defines the essence of a session beer. If it were available here in Minnesota, it would be the ONE beer that would be a constant Staple in my fridge.

Gotta give my sister some props for landing this big northern for me on her trip to Pennsylvania.

Serving type: bottle

08-04-2002 19:43:41 | More by Bighuge
Photo of RBorsato


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

Lightly hazy solid gold color with a very nice light beige head, slow bubbled carbonation, and some lace. Excellent grainy malt and lightly hopped aroma and flavor with great balance -- very clean all around. Medium-full bodied, creamy and smooth with a strong malty finish.

Excellent example, if not the best example, of the style !!

Per GL website: 30 IBU
Gold Medal - 1990 GABF

Enjoy By: 05/18/04
Tasted: 03/19/05

(B. Scott)

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2005 16:53:34 | More by RBorsato
Photo of ejimhof


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

Appearance: Golden color with nice head.

Smell: Lager with some hops smell.

Taste: This is a lager with a nice hoppy taste.

Mouthfeel: smooth with a slightly dry finish.

Drinkability: could drink this all night wish there were more examples of this style available.

Serving type: bottle

06-05-2010 23:44:49 | More by ejimhof
Photo of HopHeadRyan


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

A - Golden with a very slight haze, Nice thick head dissapates leaving lacing and a thin head that stays.

S - Sweet biscuits, slight yeastiness, crisp and clean

T - Beautiful - breadiness, crisp and clean just like the smell. Very blanaced. The hops and malts counter each other perfectly.

M - Balanced, dry, light considering its near 6% abv - - Perfect!

O - The perfect lager in my opinion. One of my favorite beers, even with my favorite style still being a Pale Ale, IPA, or DIPA. I'd still take this over many Pale Ales.

I have tasted most domestic and european lagers and this is by far the best lager I've experienced! Do yourself a favor...go out and buy as much Dortmunder Gold as you can find! I pick up at least a case ever time I'm in Ohio! Its harder to come by in PA. Great Great Great Beer!

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2011 21:52:09 | More by HopHeadRyan
Photo of Offa


4.99/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is simply an incredible beer, just about perfect for what I would want from a Dortmunder - light and easy to drink, yet full-bodied, complex, and engaging with firm malt and hop character.

Very dark gold, it has a big off-white head steadily shrinking at first, then slowly, leaving a rich, frothy ring and some lace.

Aroma is wonderful full herb, grain, hay, light bread crust, faintly toasty and caramelly.

Taste is full, toasty bread, hay (esp. in finish), strong herbal hop character, complex, zesty, engaging. Full-bodied and firm of character, it has a creamy, yet lively, full feel that retains lightness.

Serving type: on-tap

09-12-2013 04:07:53 | More by Offa
Photo of bigkingken

North Carolina

4.98/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a nice golden hue with a tinge of amber. Nice creamy head just a tad off-white that holds the side of the glass. Smells strongly of traditional German pilsner hops but are actually from America (Cascade, Hallertau). Also pick up some hints of some herbage, like coriander or clove. Tastes dry with a tinge of honey towards the end. Like a nice mix between a pilsner and a cream ale. A tad bitter on the finish, though not unpleasant. One of my favorites. Perfect for sipping on a summer evening.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2012 14:48:58 | More by bigkingken
Photo of BeerYoss


4.96/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5


Appearance: Gold, nice full head. a bit of carbonation

Smell: very crisp and inviting smell

Taste: This is what a lager should taste like. crisp and refreshing, a touch of sweetness (apricot maybe) with hops laying underneath to give some great depth.

Mouthfeel: light-medium. some carbonation up front. coats and lingers in the mouth just a little bit, really the perfect amount. slightly dry finish

Overall: almost perfect, everything goes together so well. drinkability is 100/100. if I had only one beer to drink for the rest of my life this may be the one

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2013 02:07:46 | More by BeerYoss
Photo of JustinMatthew


4.93/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a vibrant golden color with a fingers width of white head. Smells of earthy, floral hops. Taste is hop forward, citrusy and sweet with a slight bitterness. A bit floral also lingering in the aftertaste. A little drying as well. One of the better lagers ive had. This is very well done.. Great Lakes never fails me.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2011 16:37:31 | More by JustinMatthew
Photo of cokes


4.9/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Gold as can be. King Midas would be proud. Frothy, white head is equally impressive, both in its texture and retention.
Husky, grainy, doughy and welcoming in the nose.
Taste starts with a floured dinner roll and slightly toasted biscuit flavor, doused with liberal amounts of honey. Grainy, husky flavors are smoothed over with some subdued caramel notes. A moderately large dried grass hop bite comes in at the finish.
The very definition of balanced.
Medium body, intricately structured, with a refreshing crispness and steady, moderately firm carbonation.
A beer that defines drinkability.
This is absolutely world-class.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2002 22:50:39 | More by cokes
Photo of WVbeergeek


4.9/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

For me this beer is a go to, it is my trusty dog. One beer that does me right over and over again. The color of this Dortmunder Gold is a deep orangish gold with a huge white frothing head. An aroma full of citrusy grain that puts a smile on the drinkers face without thinking it is a pure reaction. I am not kidding take a whiff test my theory, and you'll be grinning like a little kid. This beer's flavor is so well balanced and crisp it is dangerously drinkable. It contains almost a sharp citrusy sweetness that dances with the tastebuds that equals pure enjoyment. This beer makes me want to pack my bags and make my way to Dortmunder. Awesome along with the other Great Lakes products.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2003 22:54:23 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of alexkeil

New York

4.9/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

When growing up, in my mind this is what a beer was, and should be. It looks, smells, and tastes like: beer.

The appearance is a pale golden color with a fizzy white, lasting head.

The smell is a balance of pilsner malts and noble hops, slightly grainy.

The taste is that great balance of pilsner malt and hops. The finish is dry with a lasting bitterness. Its a lighter beer with bold flavor.

The mouthfeel is light to medium body with medium carbonation which is actually quite lively, adding to the mouthfeel. There is a little creaminess in this beer, probably from that great head.

This is a great example of what lagers should be: full of grainy, balanced flavor with low esters and no diactyl. This beer showcases its ingredients and does a lot with a little.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2011 00:31:46 | More by alexkeil
Photo of leprechaunandfatman


4.9/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Beautiful gold color, though little head on the pour. Smells almost champagne-y with a hint of fruit and always reminds me of sitting in Great Lakes Brewery itself. Smooth with a good mix of grain and malt taste. Almost tastes buttery, like a fresh biscuit or muffin. In the mouth it is ridiculously smooth and crisp, with a lingering sweet grain taste that is wonderful. One of the first beers I ever had and still one of my favorites. Possibly influenced by the first beer thing, but is pretty much what a beer should be in my head.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2012 18:56:18 | More by leprechaunandfatman
Photo of general_staal


4.89/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

One of my all time favorites. I live in the general area of the brewery and the Cleveland area has quite a few good breweries popping up in the area. Great Lakes is probably currently the best of the bunch.

Dortmunder pours a gorgeous golden color with a very nice thick head ~1in with a lot of lacing on the glass.

It smells of herbs and grain with a little bit of a lemony kick.

Dortmunder tastes like angel tears and unicorn hearts. It is a well balanced hoppy and grainy lager style beer.

It has a nice carbonation on the tongue with a smooth finish.

Overall I would give it a 5 but there is only one beer that will get that score and it would be the Christmas Ale. I love Dortmunder and most all of the Great Lakes line. I would highly recommend that any beer fan give this one a try.

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2013 02:09:19 | More by general_staal
Photo of TheOtherMike


4.88/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I tried this one by mistake. I asked my wife to pick up the Great Lakes IPA - she got this one instead, and it became a favorite of mine. Lucky me! It's fairly available and I usually pick up a six when I see it.

Appearance - Dark amber color, very slight haze. Moderate head with active carbonation.

Smell - smells like (very) good beer, very appealing.

Taste - full bodied and well rounded.

Drinkability - it goes down very easily. 'nother please.

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2004 05:29:29 | More by TheOtherMike
Photo of PapaGemutlich


4.88/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Now that's more like it.

I'm new to GLBC (no, I don't mean "gay-lesbian-bi-curious": it's "Great Lakes Brewing Company", thank you very much), but these folks are clearly pros. Unlike the Commodore Perry IPA, which I know is good but didn't much enjoy, they get everything right with this one: weight, balance, rich gold color, topnote aromatic hops, underlying bitter, and clean, grassy finish--everything comes together here. The only, very minor quibble I have is a slightly pushy carbonation that affects mouthfeel a bit. This is what warm-weather beer should be (it's what every American lager would aspire to in a beerperfect world).

I'm looking forward to this as a fundamental for my summer fridge (when I can afford it).

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2010 21:22:51 | More by PapaGemutlich
Photo of WMEugene


4.88/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Slightly dark golden color with a thin head and very good lacing.

S - Sweet and bright malty notes. A bit bready and doughy. Very nice.

T - Sweet bready malts. A bit of honey as well. This is just simply a great tasting beer. It's light, sweet in a bready way and refreshing. To me, this is probably the pinnacle of the style.

M - Extremely smooth and drinkable, medium bodied. Refreshing. It's very inviting.

O - This is a fantastic lager. It's inviting, simple, and delicious. I'm not surprised to see this is the highest rated of the style. Highly recommended, and I really look forward to having this again.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2012 18:22:54 | More by WMEugene
Photo of sitarist


4.83/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- Pours a light clear copper with an inch of white head that fades to a ring. Lots of lacing.

S- Sour-dough, malty, with some flowery hops. Light and pleasant.

T- Sour-dough/malt up front, nutty, flowery hop flavors at the end. Great balance between malt, yeast, a hops.

M- Carbonation dances on my tongue, medium body(heavy for a lager).

D- Drinkable like a good lager should be. Each sip leaves me wanting another.

F.T.- One of the top 5 lagers in the world; in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2010 03:37:51 | More by sitarist
Photo of MirkoCroCough

Croatia (Hrvatska)

4.83/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle with freshness date marked into pint glass.

Beautiful, golden, sun a dusk color.

Lovely, honey, bready, hoppy goodness.

Slick and flavorful. Hops and malts in perfect balance. Deliciousness.

Very smooth and slick on the pallet.

Absolutely wonderful. Amazing. Hats off to Great Lakes. Top 3 p4p breweries world wide. You can't F with Dortmunder Gold. Top Notch beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2010 07:07:48 | More by MirkoCroCough
Photo of mempath


4.83/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

beautiful light lacing and deep golden color.

smell is fresh bread. sourdough.

taste is outstanding. bready, malty and the hop kiss lingering in the semi-dry finish. no wonder it wins medals. luscious mouthfeel.

way too drinkable. a randy session brew for sure.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2010 22:41:05 | More by mempath
Photo of hopman333


4.83/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Ok, why have I not reviewed this beer a long long time ago is beyond me as I have been drinking this off and on for quite some time. And as much as I love hops, hops and more hops I have always loved the Pilsner / Lager styles of beer. Where do I start.

The Appearance is that of a true hancrafted malty Lager, Deep Deep golden color that has some wonderful lacing.

It smells of Butterscotch laced malts with a deeply bready and caramel smell that just screams quality. No adjucts of ant kind in this brew. And at the same time there is a supremely fresh German Hop aroma that seems to be in in total harmony with the malts. Very very nice.

And as for the taste, this is how a Lager should taste, extremely malty and richly hopped at the same time.Jam packed with flavour and extremely satisfying. Even if you are not a Lager fan you will probably appreciate this. This is a perfect, if not the benchmark of how a high quality lager should taste.

This is absolute perfection in a bottle, just pick up a sixer at any price and enjoy. This is craft beer at it's absolute finest.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2011 03:22:33 | More by hopman333
Photo of JackStraw22


4.8/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: relatively dark (for a lager) golden body. Good inch of white foamy head. A little lacing.

Smell: Spicy hops (yeasty?) aroma. A little bit of malt, some sweetness, but the spicy/herbal aroma dominates. Very nice.

Taste/feel: Though I don't drink as many lagers as ales, this is easily my favorite lager, and it's mostly the taste that puts it over the edge. For anyone who doesn't think you can get some good complex tastes in a lager, you need to try this. Sweet upfront, earthy/yeasty in the middle, and a clean, hoppy finish. Full in the mouth, coats the mouth well.

Drinkability: I could drink the brewery out of these!

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2005 21:34:29 | More by JackStraw22
Photo of dustylong


4.8/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a very nice golden amber color with a decent head, good retention, and almost zero lacing (poured from a glass into a mug). The smell is very malty, fruity, and citrusy. The taste goes along with the smell. This is a very tasty beer, with a very malty, fruity, citrusy flavor to it. Not very bitter. Nice, dry, and crisp....perfect amount of carbonation and a moderate amount of mouthfeel. A very delicious, drinkable beer (whether on-tap or in the bottle). Drink this beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2006 04:37:29 | More by dustylong
Photo of GoodKnight1220


4.8/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle to a pint glass.

Poured a very nice dark golden yellow with a good two finger head. Had a little bit of lacing throughout.Good carbonation bubble racing to the top.

Smell was of malt and slight hops.

Taste of this beer is great, super smooth and balanced, doesn't leave any bitterness in your mouth but lasting flavor makes you want more.

Could drink this till I pass out on the floor.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2008 21:54:02 | More by GoodKnight1220
Photo of bob3701

New Jersey

4.8/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I thought putting their gold medal right on the lable like they had was a bit much, but damn this is good stuff. Nice clear gold color. Nice head to start with but disapates quickly. That German aroma associated with the finest they produce is very strong here. Nice crisp taste and if there ever was a balanced beer I think this is it. This is the beer I will now compare to all others when I think of balance. This is very pleasant to drink and that gold medal should be the prodominant feature on the label.
This ain't no yellow fizzy stuff!

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2009 23:20:11 | More by bob3701
Photo of tophers


4.8/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

a: Deep gold in color with crystal clarity. Head is long lasting with some lacing on the glass

s: Medium-low hop aroma with a bit of spiciness. Mild sweetness from the malt. Tiny bit of sulfur aroma. Picking up a slight smell of honey.

t: Very balanced between the malt and hops. Picking up the malty sweetness in the middle with a nice bitterness at the end. Very smooth. Clean without any fruit esters.

m: Medium body with low carbonation

o: Very enjoyable beer. Very good balance between the pils malt and noble hops. This beer is the best of both worlds as far as German malt and hops. Could have a touch more carbonation.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2012 01:40:44 | More by tophers
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Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,224 ratings.