1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes Dortmunder GoldGreat Lakes Dortmunder Gold

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,588 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,588
Reviews: 1,009
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 11.79%
Wants: 147
Gots: 227 | FT: 3
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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,588 | Reviews: 1,009 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mdfb79
4.18/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From 03/20/12 notes. had on tap at Arlington Rooftop. Served in a piint glass.

a - Pours a somewhat transparent bright golden color with one inch of fluffy white head and moderate carbonation evident. Looks very nice.

s - Smells of bready malts, grains, biscuit malts, light caramel malts, yeast, and earthy notes.

t - Tastes of bready malts, grains, light fruity malts, honey, biscuit, earthy notes, and some light caramel notes. A little better then the nose, very nice.

m - Light to medium body and low to moderate carbonation. Crisp and very easy to drink.

o - Overall I thought this was a great, easy to drink beer. I haven't had many Dortmunder's, but this is definitely the best one I've had so far. Very nice look and mouthfeel, and a beer you could certainly have a few of. Glad to see this hitting NoVa, looking forward to having more of this one.

mdfb79, Mar 21, 2012
Photo of szmnnl99
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

szmnnl99, Mar 21, 2012
Photo of KingBiscuit
4/5  rDev -1.7%

KingBiscuit, Mar 20, 2012
Photo of 80b
4/5  rDev -1.7%

80b, Mar 20, 2012
Photo of Rhettroactive
4.55/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

From 12oz bottle to Bruges hybrid glass on 3/4/12
*From notes

-- Best by date: 6/9/12 --

A: Clean mid-day sunshine golden in color. A good pour yields an awesome 2.5 finger white and sticky head. Long retention and a thick white collar follow.

S: Grassy malt and earth. A bit of sweet grain too. There's a trace of subtle hops to boot.

T: Just incredible. Beers like this, though easy to drink, show all of their flaws right up front. And unlike 99% of the pale lager field, this has zero flaws to speak of. It's clean as can be - a bit sweet, with a touch of bready grain on the mid. The finish is soft, yet features a small grassy and hoppy bite. Delicious from start to finish.

M: At or near the top of mouthfeel for the style. So creamy, so thick and rich yet insanely easy to put back.

O: One of my all-time favorite beers, Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold is bar-none one of the top five pale lagers produced in the world. Bold statement? Sure, but absolutely true. Not only my go-to session beer, but one I unleash on every macro dork who enters mi casa. And I can tell you, it's lit quite a few fires.

Do yourself a favor and grab a case when you see it. Don't have access? Trade for it. I promise, you'll be glad you did.

My highest recommendation.

Rhettroactive, Mar 19, 2012
Photo of mcorwin
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

mcorwin, Mar 18, 2012
Photo of WMEugene
4.88/5  rDev +19.9%
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.

WMEugene, Mar 17, 2012
Photo of BeerNoobNC
4.75/5  rDev +16.7%

BeerNoobNC, Mar 17, 2012
Photo of robieobie1
4/5  rDev -1.7%

robieobie1, Mar 16, 2012
Photo of rapidsequence
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle. From Bottle Revolution.

Appearance: Clear, bright golden color. I could go for more head retention and lacing, but the body of the beer is a beaut.

Smell: Good balance of herbal/earthy hops and aromatic, biscuity, almost cookie-like malt.

Taste: Delicious, toasty biscuit-- not as sweet as the smell, but full of flavor. Great noble hops flavor and balancing bitterness. The finish is long-- starts bitter, then becomes dry and biscuity again.

Mouthfeel: Crisp, clean. Full of flavor but refreshing.

Overall: Wow. Not my normal style of beer, but one I will definitely pick up again. Tasty, clean, drinkable-- begs you to have another.

rapidsequence, Mar 16, 2012
Photo of BeerBucks
4/5  rDev -1.7%

BeerBucks, Mar 16, 2012
Photo of ctrevino
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

ctrevino, Mar 12, 2012
Photo of Biestie
4.75/5  rDev +16.7%

Biestie, Mar 11, 2012
Photo of nrombes
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%

nrombes, Mar 10, 2012
Photo of AndrewRoecker
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

AndrewRoecker, Mar 10, 2012
Photo of Chaney
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best by 5/5/12

Presently, this is the #2 ranked Dortmunder here on BA, however, I don't put much stock in that: This one has well over 800 reviews and the #1 ranked only has 30.

Served in a Delirium Tremens oversized snifter/shaped glass.

A: This was the most golden looking brew I'd ever seen. It was crystal clear, and the bubbles shooting up from the bottom made my glass resemble an aquarium. The head stayed frothy and amoeba-shaped for quite a while.

S: I smelled tons of maltiness right away. Upon closer inspection, I got a lot of sour dough bread that made me think Octoberfest.... but not quite. I also got a good bit of cookie dough-esque sugar/hop crackle.

T: Ahh.... This totally wasn't the sweet, syrup bomb I thought it was going to be based on the smell. The yeasty, fresh aftertaste was quite remarkable, and the mid-palate had a bit of honey, bread yeast, and sweet barley.

M: Definitely not dry in any way. This one goes down silky smooth, with a slightly robust texture considering the style. The lacing was mildly splotchy and my palate came out of the session completely clean.

O: While 5.8% isn't that high, I wouldn't exactly call this a "session" beer, but it is definitely one that I could pop several of around the pool. Fantastic!

Chaney, Mar 10, 2012
Photo of BierAdvoNikk
5/5  rDev +22.9%

BierAdvoNikk, Mar 10, 2012
Photo of BillMueller
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

BillMueller, Mar 10, 2012
Photo of tdm168
4.18/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a copper gold with a quarter of an inch of soft, white head that has good retention. There is a good deal of carbonation rising to the top. The nose is grassy with just a hint of lemon. The taste offers some faint caramel malt up front followed by some grassy, slightly earthy, bitter hops that provide a smooth, balanced finish. The mouthfeel is smooth and lightly carbonated which lend to a very drinkable, medium body.

This is a nice, easy drinking beer that brings flavor that most lagers don't. It offers a nice balanced malt/hop character. I will have this again in the future.

tdm168, Mar 08, 2012
Photo of dhep16
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%

dhep16, Mar 08, 2012
Photo of rickyleepotts
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I remember sitting in a small bar one night in Columbus, Ohio waiting on the doors to open to see David Guetta perform for the first time. He was playing at a REALLY small venue, once a church, but the doors didn’t open for a couple of hours. So we went and had a beer at a really small pub. I had a Great Lakes beer. Seemed fitting. I don’t remember which one, but it wasn’t this one. I have never had a dortmunder beer before. I am excited to try it.

In the Glass: I wasn’t expecting so much color. The tasting notes made it sound like a bland European beer with some subtle apple overtones. But the beer pours almost orange, and has a very nice look to it. It looks good, so I hope the smell and flavors match.

Nose: It smells VERY fruity, and has a simple sweetness to it. People online say this beer tastes like apples. I keep reading that. The sweetness I am getting on the nose would make me think there will be some heavy apple in the flavor. Well… let’s stop smelling and start drinking.

Flavor: Drink this beer cold. We are drinking it right out of the fridge, and I don’t think heating this beer up will help. There isn’t much flavor, but the flavor that is there is a high quality and lasting flavor. There isn’t much apple, but there is a simple sweetness that turns dry toward the back of the palate. Swishing it around in my mouth really opens the tongue up, and you get those dry notes all over. I like it.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is boring for the first half of the palate, but when the sweetness kicks in leading to a dry finish, I dig it. The burp is good too. This beer has won some medals, a gold medal at that… and while I don’t think it’s THAT good, I would totally get a case of this for a Saturday night at home.

Aftertaste: The aftertaste is great. It sits there and doesn’t mess around. It’s dry, almost like what you experience after eating some really fresh fruit in the middle of the summer, and just lingers for a long time. A good three to four minutes have passed since my last sip and it’s still hanging out. I like it.

This is a really good beer. I am a big fan of Great Lakes, and while I wish there were more in the book… there are only two on our list. But that’s OK. We go to Ohio every once in a while so we can grab a bottle of this if we need to. We’re actually in the process of planning a trip to Jungle Jim’s. Anyway, I like this beer a ton. Bottoms up people!

Dortmunder Gold - The bottle says: “Our Dortmunder Gold is a consistent gold medalist and a balanced golden lager (do you see a pattern forming?). In the Middle Ages, this style brewed in Germany was so popular it required armed escorts when exported to surrounding towns. As you can see, this beer was and still is as good as gold.”

rickyleepotts, Mar 08, 2012
Photo of atr2605
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- pours golden straw color with a very light haze. Has a giant white head with good retention that leaves a slight lace
S- low hop aroma with sweet malt
T- sweet malt up front immediately balanced by the hop bitterness and a bit of mineral flavor. Finishes crisp and clean
M- medium bodied with a said amount of carbonation
O- very well done. First of the style that I have tried and it seems spot on. A but different but still very crisp

atr2605, Mar 08, 2012
Photo of 2dogbrew
3.5/5  rDev -14%

2dogbrew, Mar 07, 2012
Photo of drewgentry
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

drewgentry, Mar 06, 2012
Photo of brealbg
4/5  rDev -1.7%

brealbg, Mar 05, 2012
Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,588 ratings.