1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. 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.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

2,757 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,757
Reviews: 1,024
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 11.79%
Wants: 154
Gots: 291 | 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:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,757 | Reviews: 1,024 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of samie85
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on-tap at the Bad Apple, 05/07, reviewed from notes.

A- Served in a standard shaker pint glass, Dortmunder Gold pours a dark reddish golden hue with a one finger white head.

S-I'm getting some dry smelling malt aromas upfront with some floral hop notes.

T-Sweet, bready malt notes are the first thing I taste, this is balanced by a nice crisp, bitter noble hop finish.

M-It's on the lighter side of medium-bodied with medium carbonation and smooth, slick feel to it.

D-Wow, I remember hating this beer about 5 years ago. Thought it was so bitter, oh how tastes change. This is a super easy drinking, light bodied, flavorful beer that I could see myself having a number of in the upcoming warmer months.

Photo of OnThenIn
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: A little less than a finger of slightly off head. The beer is a clear copper color with a slight red tinge.

Smell: The beer smells really sweet. There is a good amount of bready aroma, which is wonderful.

Taste: The flavor opens up with a bit of hop flavor and moves towards some sweetness. This is then quickly followed by a tiny bit of bitterness.

Mouthfeel: The beer is medium bodied with carbonation a little on the low end.

Drinkability: Overall, the beer is very well rounded and an easy drinker, but really delicious. Just a solid beer.

Photo of Wisconsinality
3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into SA perfect pint.

A- Pours a crystal clear gold with a half finger of head that leaves some nice, sticky lacing on the side of the glass. The head also leaves a small thin cap for most of the duration of the beer.

S- The nose is a little subdued, some pale malts, a little sweet malt and a little breadiness.

T- Pale malts, almost a creamy taste to it. A touch of honey and some bread as well. I am pleasantly surprised.

M- Light to medium bodied that has fair carbonation and a smoothness to it. The beer just coats the tongue and goes down really easy.

D- I am admittedly not a huge fan of lagers but I was pleasantly surprised with this one. It has a good taste and is almost creamy. I would pick this one up again.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.45/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Looked similar to a BMC, maybe a little darker yellow. Thin head. Aroma neutral.

Taste, a little more than where my expectations had sank to after the pour. Tasted grainy. Minimal hop or malt feel. No surprises through the rest. Light on the palate. Hoped for more zest. Very easy to drink. I honestly don't get what is so great about this beer. Its fine, just fine.

Photo of gatornation
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a nice dark yellow /slight amber color with a fresh 1 finger head and nice lacing on glass....the smell is malt and bread some hops and spices..the taste is malt forward in a big way its crisp with pale malts and noble hops and some bitterness to this.. it finishes crisp and clean..the mouth feel is medium its flavorful and satisfying ..the Munich malts balanced with the noble hops make for a tasty treat for the summer... a great lager representation will drink this many times this summer

Photo of tjd112
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Presentation - Poured into Southampton pint glass

Appearance - Amber gold with lasting white head and good lacing

Smell - Bread, bread, and more bread

Taste - Bitter at first, but a bit of malty breadiness comes through

Mouthfeel - Light to medium, very crisp

Drinkability - A sessionable beer

Overall - Not too bad

Photo of pootz
4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from trade:

Honey-gold color with a puffy white cap that lasts and laces.

Big bready sweet nose with some woody and herbal tones.

Huge chew of Munich pale malt in the front with a wonderful herbal noble hop balance, mid palate there is a subtle complexity as you taste the multiple malts and hop varieties used . Finishes lightly drying clean and satisfying with a citrus snap.

A very nice Dortmund styled lager with a rich malt spine and traditional German hopping....a lager lover's wet dream.

Photo of curasowa
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a golden yellow color with one finger of fluffy white head. The malt shows up big in the aroma with a lot of sweetness and some butteryness over a slight metallic background. A light, floral hop aroma is also present. The taste starts off with a slight bitter bite and then there's a nice, medium body of sweet malt with a slightly drying, toasted flavor. Some bitterness comes back in on the finish which is fairly clean and fast. Drinkability is excellent. This is a favorite of mine for a nice, easy drinking beer.

Photo of canucklehead
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Meisterburger for this one:

Cool to finally drink a beer that has been every beer book since the late 90,s as a great example of US lager. Poured it into my new Sam Adams perfect pint glass and it looks golden and lovely. Decent head and a good hoopy nose. This is a great lager with nice mouthfeel and good malt backbone as per the style. Could drink a bunch of these and it is a shame that it isn't available on the West Coast. Nothing imperial or weird about this beer but rather a well crafted drinking beer .

Photo of DoppleJock
4.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

04/28/2010
12 oz. bottle poured into 22 cl Stiegl pilsener glass.

A: Poured a beautiful dark golden with 1-finger foamy off-white head. Great carbonation, lacing, and color.

S: Bready with a healthy balance of malts and hops.

T: Biscuity amd grainy with a good mix of bready malts and mild bitter hops.

M: Crisp carbonation across the tongue with a dry finish.

D: Would take this any day over a pilsener. Definitely a go-to for a sixer.

Photo of jmdrpi
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass. bottle lists enjoy by date of 4/21/10

A- amber golden color, thin wispy head

S - just a touch of hops. grains, grassy

T - like th label says, very balanced. not too hoppy, not too malty. no dominant flavor

M - typical lager. thin, crisp

D - balanced, smooth, very easy to drink

Photo of MrStark
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pilsener glass.

Appearance is a nice clear, golden orange with a two finger off white head with good retention and nice sticky lacing.

Smell is of pleasant beady malt upfront followed by a mild hop presence. A good balanced aroma.

Taste is quite a nice and complex blend of breaded malts, a hint of caramel sweetness, and a finish of medium hops. A well balanced blend for sure that leave a mildly bitter and pleasant aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, smooth and has good amount of carbonation.

Drinkability is great. It goes down nice and easy and is quite tasty and refreshing. Definite session beer for sure, I would love to have this year round. I will be picking up more of these in the near future.

Photo of ben68cat
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

if i am going to drink a lager this is the one for me!pours dark amber ,nice head , drinks real well,smooth and deliscious!it doesnt surprise me it is gold medal winner. said it before and will say it again cant go wrong with great lakes!this is not too bad in a bottle either.

Photo of LordHammer
4.6/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Northern Brewer Glass.

A: Brilliant bright gold, edging towards amber. Pours an inch of off white head that slowly fades to a solid lace down the glass.

S: Lots of malt, bread, bit of biscuit and a tinge of hops and citrus. Definitely appetizing.

T: Complex layering of malts, with some of the bread that was present in the aroma. A bit of hops at the close, with a lingering grainy aftertaste and a hint of bitterness. This is really excellent.

M: Spot on. Body is moderate, as is carbonation. Really straddles the line between being satisfying and drinkable.

D: Not only is it delicious, it is well balanced and very quaffable. I would happily have many of these.

Photo of bdupree
4.03/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Shimmering gold with nice inch-high head that lingers for a while.

S: I don't pick up very much, just a bit of lite citrus and malt.

T: This is so well balanced and almost creamy, I think I need to drink it with a spoon! Just the right balance of everything with a medium hop taste, citrus and some sweetness.

M: For a lager, it is somewhat thick and medium-heavy... but in a good way.

D: Admittedly, I'm not much of a lager drinker. I actually picked this one up for my wife. After working outside in the yard, this was absolutely perfect. It isn't too light, and has just enough going on to interest the finicky beer drinkers. I am quickly becoming a fan of Great Lakes.

Photo of sixerofelixir
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle, best by 06/19/10.

A very good, working-class lager that has been one of my staple brews for years. A harmonious balance of bitter, sweet, and toasty. Light golden color, an aromatic and spicy finish almost like a "champagne of beers" or something. It's just really good, quite complex, and perfect for days or nights, with food or by itself, in a glass or from the bottle.. etc.,etc.,etc.

Photo of PapaGemutlich
4.88/5  rDev +19.9%
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).

Photo of bamadog
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I freaking love GLBC and I'm always happy to get their beers. Dortmunder Gold is one of my go-tos in the summer time, but to come across it on tap is something that I haven't seen for a while. Glad to give a review from the tap as well! Poured from the tap to a pint glass and review is from notes taken on 4/3/2010.

Appearance: Pours a near perfect coppery color and starts with a 1/4 finger head that fades to a thin and uneven island in the center of the surface with a thin ring that surrounds it; body is very clear and shows light carbonation; no lacing to speak of, but loose spotty washes try to hold on.

Smell: A nice light toasty graininess with a sweet malty backing; I love the simplicty, but it could be a little stronger.

Taste: Love it - one of my favorite lagers; has a VERY light bittering hoppiness that is just slightly overpowered by the wonderful toasty graininess and a very solid matly backing (perhaps it reminds me of LME?); I really appreciate the simplicity of this beer.

Mouthfeel: Pretty clean and refreshing overall, but it provides a light stickiness; body is moderately light and has great carbonation that fits the style and body as it's just lively enough; finish is just a tad sticky and dry and holds that grainy aftertaste long after the glass is empty.

Drinkablity: I love this beer and it's one of GLBC's staples -- nice, solid, simple and straightforward, love the flavors and it's not too heavy and the ABV is more than manageable at just under 6%; great all year but I tend to prefer it in the summer.

Photo of Agold
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: This beer is a very clear, brilliant golden color. It pours with about two fingers of head, which lingers a while. Good lacing, which lasts longer than I expected it would.

S: I am smelling mostly malts, with a hop undertone which is pleasant.

T: Very nice malty flavor, but the distinct taste of hops is what I find myself most focused on. Very clean flavor.

M: This beer has a bit more body than I would expect from this beer. It is also pretty carbonated, which I really enjoy.

Photo of twiggamortis420
4.58/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Received this gem in a recent BIF from bboyshatter, thanks Sean! 12 oz bottle has a freshness stamp of 04/11/10. Pours a mostly clear, light copper color with a large-bubbled light tan foam. Average retention and some really nice lacing.

Nose is quite nice. Spicy yeast breadiness with plenty of grassy herbaceous hops. Crackery malts come through with a touch of sweet honey.

Taste is well balanced and has loads of flavor for a fairly light lager. Spiced herbaceous hops are very much in the forefront as well as some freshly crushed grains drizzled with honey. I am surprised by the hop presence in the beer, both flavoring and bittering. Finish is dry with a little bit of lingering earthy malt husk and toast. Very delicious brew, I like it a lot.

Photo of Rbald42
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this as an extra from Drabmuh. Thanks Matt!

The pour resulted in a crystal clear golden hue that was good but nothing spectacular. The nose was herbal grassy hops somewhat floral with some biscuit malt. Some medicinal qualities and sweetness there as well.
Taste was much like a pilsner, dry with a nice hop bite, again grassy and hints of some pear, with spicy notes on the end. The malt profile was not as pronounced as a pilsner but it was good nonetheless. Mouthfeel was dry, lots of carbonation with a clean mildly astringent finish. This is a very nice lager and I could enjoy several for several days in a row.

Photo of tpd975
3.83/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours golden hue with a small white head. No retention or lace.

S: Aromas of light bready malt. Caramel, and ligh citrus.

T: Simple sweet candy malts and a nice hop bite in the middle that carries through the finish.

M: On the lighter side of medium, smooth.

D: Good, solid sessionable brew.

Photo of Duff27
3.5/5  rDev -14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- GOLD haha. Quickly disappearing head, not much lacing. Really like the color though.

S- I didn't smell much, maybe I need to get my sniffer fixed. Bready?

T- Tasty for a lager. Citrus.

M- Very crisp, lotsa carbonation.

D/O- Drinkability is there, not quite sure I wouldn't switch to something else after a couple of these though.

Photo of speter
4.43/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a golden straw color with a solid three-finger creamy head that has amazing staying power. Nice lacing.

S: Very balanced between noble hops and pale malt. The hops are lightly spicy and citrusy, while the malt is lightly biscuity and doughy.

T: Wow! This is balanced like the smell. The initial taste is wonderfully sweet, but the balance shifts to the hops in the center, and a lightly bitter, but otherwise clean finish follows.

M: Quite full for a lager. Very creamy, and the carbonation is not too powerful, which adds to the velvetness (velvetosity?).

D: As an export, the ABV is slightly higher than the standard 5%. I suspect that would be the limiting factor, because the taste makes me want to have several more. I truly hope they start distributing this in New Jersey, although it makes my trips to Pennsylvania all the more worth while if I get this along the way!

Photo of happilysurly
3.9/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Very clear, light gold color with almost no head whatsoever.

S: Fresh smell, hay aroma, malty but sweet with a slight blackberry smell.

T: Very pleasant. I would say that any lager is going to be low on my list of beers to drink, but this one tastes very good, very complex. It tastes like an ale quite frankly. Very bitter for a lager.

M: It really does taste like light, crisp ale to me, but I know it's actually a lager.

D: I would not question purchasing this beer again. Its a very good light beer with enough flavor to justify another pour.

Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,757 ratings.