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Great Lakes Eliot Ness - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes Eliot NessGreat Lakes Eliot Ness

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

2,628 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,628
Reviews: 933
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 11.52%
Wants: 198
Gots: 235 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co. visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Vienna Lager |  6.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
An amber lager with rich, fragrant malt flavors balanced by crisp noble hops.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-11-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Great Lakes Eliot Ness Alström Bros
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Ratings: 2,628 | Reviews: 933 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have never had a bad brew from this legendary brewpub. Clear freshness dating appreciated. Too bad its not available in Canada. This is a very good German style beer. Goes well with food, perfect for appetizers. Well balanced. Two to three people to finish a six-pack.

Sammy, Nov 30, 2003
Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev -2%

t0rin0, Nov 19, 2012
Photo of spycow
4.25/5  rDev +4.2%

spycow, Mar 11, 2013
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.95/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Thanks to whitenads for sending me this one.

Enjoy by: 8/13/14.

Pours a hazy dark orange-red with a foamy beige head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, toast, nut, caramel, and earth aromas. Taste is much the same with toast, nut, and earth flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of toast bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with solid toast and nut qualities all around.

Serving type: bottle.

UCLABrewN84, Sep 29, 2014
Photo of djrn2
3.5/5  rDev -14.2%

djrn2, Sep 01, 2013
Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

zestar, May 10, 2014
Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

acurtis, Apr 27, 2013
Photo of Thorpe429
3.68/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

G: Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint.

A: Good, solid amber color that is quite transparent and has a strong off-white head with plenty of carbonation.

S: Strong malt sensation--the grains really come through with a tiny bit of hop bitterness at the end.

T: Quite omplex for a lager. Grassy notes in addition to the traditional malt one would expect from a Vienna. The amber notes are definitely there and enhance the flavor.

M: Fairly smooth with a moderate amount of carbonation. Sort of heavy mouthfeel for a lager. No noticeable alcohol.

D: Definitely drinkable. A little heavy for a lager though. maybe I just wasn't feeling this one last night, I'll have to try it again soon.

Thorpe429, Apr 03, 2009
Photo of nmann08
4.5/5  rDev +10.3%

nmann08, Dec 05, 2011
Photo of Texasfan549
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

Texasfan549, Sep 28, 2013
Photo of metter98
4.03/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high dense beige head that slowly died down and left some lacing on the surfaces and down the sides of the glass.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of caramel malts and spices in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the flavors of caramel malts dominate the taste, which has a slight amount of sweetness. There is some spiciness and a mild amount of bitterness.
M: It feels medium-bodied and very smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is very easy to drink and goes down smoothly.

metter98, Jun 06, 2011
Photo of GRG1313
3.58/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Shows a date best by 3-19-10 - consumed a month before "expiration date")

Pours a very bright orange amber with a firm tan head. Nose is oranges and honey.

Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with good carbonation and nice balance of flavors.

Full flavors of underlying fruit and then a nice rich bitter coffee that goes to bitter coffee/bitter sweet finish.

Flavor profile actually has a bit of an "off-putting" character in the finish. However, this is relatively complex and with lots of layers.

GRG1313, Mar 04, 2010
Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev -2%

kjkinsey, Sep 28, 2013
Photo of brentk56
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with a tight bubbled beige head; the beer leaves a nice pattern of lace

Smell: Caramel malt dominates, but there is a hint of hoppiness underneath

Taste: Opens with a nicely balanced caramel malt and earthy hop character that provide a bitter, almost herb tea flavor; after the swallow, the balanced flavors linger, with a bit of residual caramel sweetness on the tip of the tongue; the herbal tea element hangs on for a while in the aftertaste along with a bit of lager twang

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Rarely encountered, this is a very nice example of the Vienna Lager style

Thanks, rhinos00, for the opportunity

brentk56, Nov 27, 2008
Photo of BEERchitect
4.3/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Who knew that a Vienna Lager could taste so good. From the bottle, the beer smells like fruit cake without all of the plastic-y and potpouri flavors. Simple and pure. Rich in dark (dehydrated) fruits of dates, figs, nuts,... Sweet fruits are structured with a big bready flavor and aroma. Full and round in the mouth. Not too sweet or heavy. Finishes very clean for such sweetness. A little added alcohol keeps the beer interesting. Seems to give a little in the body and roundness compared to the tap version. Still, a best-of-Style contender.

BEERchitect, Jun 12, 2006
Photo of Phyl21ca
3.83/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a mid-brown color beer with an above average white foamy head with good retention. Nice malty aroma with some roastiness and some nuts. Taste is quite malty with a smooth creamy taste and light bitterness at the end. Body is fuller then expected and probably fuller then most Vienna I tasted before. Overall, this is real good stuff.

Phyl21ca, Apr 25, 2005
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.65/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Gorgeous orange-red-amber with the accent on the orange. The tangerine-tinted beige colored head is large, pitting and sticky. Foam is already starting to stick in clumps to the inside of the pint glass. It eventually settles to a creamy disk and leaves a few unbroken rings.

The nose is an enticing melange of caramel malt and spicy hops. The flavor follows suit, though hops aren't very prominent, which is exactly as it should be for the style. Each mouthful starts off sweet and malty, with earthy and spicy joining the party soon after. Bitter orange peel is the perfect (mild) accent flavor.

The mouthfeel is full, creamy and... perfect! This brewery never ceases to amaze me when it comes the characteristic that I think is second only to flavor in importance.

Great Lakes Eliot Ness is only the fourth Vienna lager that I have ever had... and it's easily the best. There will undoubtedly be many more in my craft beer future, but it's doubtful if any of them will surpass this one for across-the-board quality and drinkability. Simply put, this is beautiful beer.

BuckeyeNation, Mar 14, 2004
Photo of ygtbsm94
3/5  rDev -26.5%

ygtbsm94, Jan 18, 2012
Photo of mikesgroove
3.63/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had this one on tap at Applebees tonight and it was poured into a 22oz Pilsner glass.

A - Poured a very nice deep burnt amber with a nice large white foamy head that rose up above it a good three fingers high before finally setting down and relaxing into a thin film across the top and a nice side glass lacing throughout the session. There was nice carbonation streaming up from the bottom.

S - The aroma was full of grain. Lots of earhty cereal grains were the domunant aroma here. There was a slight hint of grassy flavors underneath, but this was only slight and nothing really notworthy about it. There was a hint of some wheat as well.

T - The flavor was not really your classic Vienna lager. I would have thought that was what it was gonna be but it really was more indicative of a red or amber ale more then anything else. A very tight flavor there was lots of grain and herby like flavors mixed in with a earthy grass like flavor that gave it a little extra pop towards the end. The finish was somewhat drawn out with the flavor of bready like malts starting to come through more then anything else.

M - A medium bodied ale the carbonation served to lighten it up some, however there was a nice like slicknes to the finish. I would have thought it would have been a little bit thinner then it actually was but it turned out it was not half bad at all, and was definitly a quality ale.

D - I thought this was a fine session ale. Its profile was not too heavy and the flavors went together very well. I could easily see myself drinking several of these without any issue. A very fine ale indeed and something I would drink more of.

Overall this was good I was very happy to see it on tap and it was defintily very nice going with dinner. I would not say this was excellent, however it was still a fine brew non the less. I would say it was a good call in a pinch.

mikesgroove, Jan 08, 2008
Photo of womencantsail
4.2/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to Thorpe for this one.

A: The beer pours a somewhat cloudy copper color with about two fingers of khaki colored head.

S: Nice sweet caramel and toffee malt aromas to this. Plenty of toasted bread/malts are also there. There is a touch of yeast and some floral and spicy hop notes. Very nice nose.

T: Fairly sweet, but not overly so. Caramel and toffee malt flavors are there with some toasted bread. Light floral and spicy hop flavor and very faint bitterness.

M: Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Very crisp.

O: An extremely well done lager. I very much enjoyed this.

womencantsail, Sep 27, 2011
Photo of Knapp85
4.24/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This poured out as a beautiful clear amber color with an off white head on top. The retention and lacing were very nice on this beer. The smell is malty sweet with some mild earthiness. The taste of the beer is malty with a subtle sweetness and a very mild bitterness in the finish. The mouthfeel is soft and creamy with a decent carbonation. Overall it's a really good brew, very surprised with this one... Disappointed I didn't try this one sooner.

Knapp85, Jan 16, 2013
Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.75/5  rDev -8.1%

westcoastbeerlvr, Jan 10, 2013
Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.08/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear, reddish-hued body with a foamy off-white head.

Smell: A well-balanced blend of sweet-smelling caramel maltiness and a spicy, white pepper hop scent. Faint hint of grains.

Taste: Smooth, sweet maltiness with a toasted caramel taste. Light graininess. A tangy jolt midway. Spicy, herbal hop flavors. Mild bitterness that lingers into the aftertaste. Finishes crisp.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: A very lovely Vienna. I would have had another right this very minute if I had one chilled and ready. I would have been GLAD to!

ChainGangGuy, Dec 22, 2007
Photo of oberon
4.22/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good malty-spicy beer,smelled like bread rising,went great with pizza nice high alcohol content went well with the spiciness of the pizza.I honestly havent had a bad beer from Great Lakes yet.Best brewery in the midwest,with Kalamazoo(my beloved Bells)not far behind.

oberon, Feb 01, 2003
Photo of largadeer
4.13/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Clear burnt orange in color with a thick head of foam that leaves behind plenty of lace.

Smell: Toast with butter, earthy and grainy, slight sweetness.

Taste & mouthfeel: Caramel and toasted grain with some earthy undertones. Medium-bodied, pretty chewy for a lager but highly drinkable all the same. This one dries up quite a bit in the finish, leaving a mild hop bite on the tongue.

Notes: Thanks Mike, really enjoyed this one.

largadeer, May 09, 2008
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Great Lakes Eliot Ness from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 2,628 ratings.