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Great Lakes Eliot Ness - Great Lakes Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Great Lakes Eliot NessGreat Lakes Eliot Ness

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2,561 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,561
Reviews: 929
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 11.25%
Wants: 187
Gots: 220 | 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
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Ratings: 2,561 | Reviews: 929 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of oline73
4/5  rDev -2.2%

oline73, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of scott2269
4/5  rDev -2.2%

scott2269, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of meetyouoverboard
4/5  rDev -2.2%

meetyouoverboard, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of throwback
5/5  rDev +22.2%

throwback, Nov 14, 2011
4.5/5  rDev +10%

TEAMHOLT, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of SaintJonah
4/5  rDev -2.2%

SaintJonah, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of sbricker
4/5  rDev -2.2%

sbricker, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of bpfrush
4/5  rDev -2.2%

bpfrush, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of DocDownUnder
5/5  rDev +22.2%

DocDownUnder, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of mater
4/5  rDev -2.2%

mater, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of CaptDavyJones
4.03/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a clear dark red/copper color from a 12 oz bottle, with ABV clearly marked on the label.
A good two finger head that dissipated fairly quickly. Good carbonation. This beer is a visual treat.
Aroma is characteristic of a lager, the malts are very noticeable in the nose. Bready-yeast aroma with hints of grain and bittering hops.
Taste is very crisp and refreshing. Predominantly malty upfront, with a nice lingering bitter finish from the hops. Easy to drink and has all the makings of a perfect session beer. Good, clean mouthfeel.
A very good lager from Great Lakes, definitely worth a try.

CaptDavyJones, Nov 09, 2011
Photo of DrinkingDrake
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Strong golden/amber color with about a finger of white head with little retention. Crisp herbal hop character in the nose along with fresh cracked two-row sweetness and the Vienna toasty caramel. Flavor carries a lot of the malt from the nose. The sweet caramel and rich, lightly toasty malts are smooth and clean. Finishes with herbal hops that have a subtle earthy twist. The toasty grains also carry to the finish melding well with the hop character. Smooth and clean body with a moderate amount of carbonation. Extremely pleased the offerings I have been able to sample from this brewery.

DrinkingDrake, Nov 08, 2011
Photo of jmarsh123
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy copper with a one finger off-white head leaving good lacing down the glass.

Nice toffee malts with some hop spiciness in the aroma.

Starts off with a good German amber malt sweetness similar to an Oktoberfest. Finishes with a nice noble hop kick.

Mouthfeel and carbonation are both medium and great for the style.

Great Lakes with a spot on style again. I love a good Vienna lager from time to time and anytime I'm in Ohio or MI I usually grab some of this.

jmarsh123, Nov 06, 2011
Photo of HopHeadRyan
5/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Let me start by saying that I am a Pale Ale person...I normally shy away from all-things-lager...with that being said...WOW!

I become more of a Great Lakes fan with every beer I sample...

A - Beautiful crystal clear sparkling carmel-amber...decent 1/2 inch head that lingers...and leaves awesome lacing around the glass.

S - Sweet carmel notes, bready, herbal, slight fragrance of nobel hops

T - Awesome quick sweetness perfectly countered by slight hop bitterness. Definite grainy/breadiness/minerally. Delicious!

M - Perfect...exactly as expected medium bodied lager...not overly syrupy or watered down. just right!

O - I thought their Dortmunder Gold was my favorite lager...now I'm torn between the two. Exceptionally drinkable...strength of 6.2 abv very well hidden. An awesome beer that I think most would enjoy! If you see it...buy it!

I should also note that the "consume by date" on the sampler case I bought was Nov 7 2011. Today is Nov 1 2011. I was concerned when I saw the date...but the beer is still very fresh and perfect. This tells me that Great Lakes has excellent quality control and really know their product!

HopHeadRyan, Nov 01, 2011
Photo of mrfrancis
3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear brownish amber with a fluffy, pillowy beige head that laces deep into the glass. Looks far better than many commercial amber lagers.

S: The nose is dominated by nutty malt and grassy hop aromas with a touch of a chalky mineral scent in the background. Honestly, I was expecting rich, buttery malt aromas, but did not detect them.

T: Opens crisp and dry with notes of roasted nuts, brown butter, caramel, minerals, heavy cream, chalk, and a grassy, herbal hop bitterness. The finish displays a flourish of hops, with notes of grass, lemon, and herbs.

M: Medium-to-full bodied, fairly dry, and firm. Carbonation is crisp, but not as intrusive as that found in some other lagers. The higher alcohol content gives this beer a pleasant, warming quality that would make it perfect for autumn and winter evenings.

O: This is a very distinctive Vienna lager, and should be particularly appealing for those who like their lagers on the strong side.

mrfrancis, Oct 31, 2011
Photo of RoamingGnome
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 10/23/11 Tasting Notes

Poured out of a12 oz bottle into a Hamms pint glass. Who doesn't like that trouble making bear from the land of sky blue waters?

A) A sturdy looking copper color, with a finger of off white head. The head dissipates to a nice dusting around the ring of the pint. Not a whole lot of lacing.

S) Roasted malt sweetness, with a hint of booze and a touch of hops. A pleasing aroma.

T) A nutty maltiness, slightly sweet. A nice hoppy flavor balances this brew out.

M) A medium body, with light carbonation. This is pretty smooth and creamy. Nice aftertaste.

O) Another very solid offering from Great Lakes Brewing Co.

RoamingGnome, Oct 30, 2011
Photo of clint1019
4.38/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Has a nice Ruby-Brown color to it with a thin caramel colored head that leaves some lacing.

S - Rich Caramel Malt flavor with strong notes of fruit and biscuits.

T - Has a great caramel flavor with a nice fruityness.

M - light to medium bodied.

O - This beer reminds me so much of a barleywine. It has all the aromas and flavors of a barleywine, but much lighter bodied. Excellent beer.

clint1019, Oct 19, 2011
Photo of langm12
4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up on a recent trip to Ohio. Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass.

A - Gorgeous ruby color pour. Finger of bubbly head recedes quickly. Great lacing all the way down.

S - Sweet. Caramel and biscuits. Touch of toffee

T - Big caramel and biscuity malts. Touch of hops on the back end is a nice touch.

M - Super rich. Medium bodied with good carbonation.

O - A wonderful beer. Great balance. Super tasty.

langm12, Oct 18, 2011
Photo of nataku00
3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a tulip glass. Dark amber color beer, a little hazy, with two fingers of foamy khaki colored head. The head recedes slowly to a decent collar of bubbles, leaving some sticky lacing that hangs around the inside of the glass. Nicely carbonated, many small bubbles rising up from the bottom of the glass.

Nose is dominated by malt, with lots of caramel and biscuit sweetness, but there is still a decent amount of floral and herbal hops.

Taking a sip, a touch of herbal hop bitterness hits the tongue first, then a nice light caramel, toasted bread and grains, with a light floral hopping. Finishes mostly dry with some lingering light floral hop flavors on the tongue.

Light body with a zesty active carbonation that is crisp on the tongue but isn't overly prickly. Easy to drink lager, with a good amount of flavor.

nataku00, Oct 16, 2011
Photo of CheezyBlaster
4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fresh, floral, toasty. Amber. Clean.

Toasty malts come across but the nearly perfect hopping tames the setup. Perfectly balanced between sweet caramel/grains and the right amount of noble hops. Just an amazing beer.

There is nothing wrong with this beer . . . perfect for the season too. I wish more brewers took the time to construct lagers like this -especially in "Ale America". Great job. I really, really liked this beer and could easily put it in regular rotation.

CheezyBlaster, Oct 15, 2011
Photo of JWU
4.18/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz. bottle poured into a curved pint glass

A- Translucent Amber/Reddish hue, impressive tan head, that sticks around and leaves a little lacing down the glass, more so that most lagers

S- Lagery, Toasty grains, with a bit of caramel and possibly a hint of chocolate.. Really gets you excited about what is to come

T- Flavorful without being brash and over the top. Toasty grain, and caramel malts dominate, a little of a chocolate component peaks through as well. A very nice herbal hop component balances, but not in an over the top fashion (a.k.a. Sam Adams Boston Lager) Toasty grain flavor lasts well into the dry finish.

M- Medium bodied and very rich, with a tight, medium carbonation.

O- Really, really well done. Again, flavorful without being over the top.

JWU, Oct 12, 2011
Photo of pschul4
3.58/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into trusty Milwaukee Brewers pint glass

A- Deep lushous brown with nice 1/2" head that sticks around a while to keep me company

S- Some faint malts, all in all not much going on in the smell department

T- a lot of different but very faint flavors. I taste some chocolate, some sweet malts and some hops too but nothing is really prevalent. Everything is rather muted

M- As with the dortmunder gold it's bubbly but not overly so, very nice mouthfeel for a session beer

O- tough to make a call on this one. it looks amazing and feels great but the taste is kind of lame and I detect little to no smell. I probably won't get this again but it's enjoyable in the sampler pack I purchased

pschul4, Oct 11, 2011
Photo of MrOH
4.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Brilliant amber with a finger of off white head. Really good retention.

Toasty malt. Slight hint of tropical fruit (pineapple?). The malt runs deep.

Bready, toasty malt. Slightly sweet, but not caramelly. Somewhat bock-like, but much cleaner in finish. A bit of cinnamon-spice from noble hops, I'd imagine, to compliment the sweetness. An especially great beer for fall.

Surprisingly light-bodied when contrasted with the flavor.

Quite a nice beer for colder weather and activity. It somewhat reminds me of a british winter warmer, but with the lightness and drinkablity of a lager.

MrOH, Oct 11, 2011
Photo of tjacobs610
4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark caramel color, with a reddish hue. Minimal head, but what is there is a whitish creamy color

Smell: Has a grainy odor, with a very sweet aroma that is also very pungent

Taste: Very rich taste. Perfect mix of hops and malts. Also has herbal hints toward the end of the taste, which ends very dry

Mouthfeel: Very good feel, has a very frothy and chewy feel. Has a great ending, perfect mix of dryness and flavor

Overall: Very good brew overall; this is one of my favorite beers around. Not many things to pick at, it has a great mixture of flavor, color and aroma

tjacobs610, Oct 10, 2011
Photo of AgentMunky
3.65/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into an Ommegang glass. Best before 26 July 2011. From notes. Reviewed 23 June 2011.

A: White head; less than decent retention. Brilliantly, beautiuflly red. Damn. Clear and amber in the light. Come lacing.

S: Fruit. CRANBERRY. Tart and pleasant.

T: Strangeish. It tastes like a cranberry spritzer. Sweet malts with tart fruit and only trace hops. By the end, the maltiness gets caramelly.

M: It's fine. But nothing great.

O: Interesting -- a nice beer. I might not drink another, but I suppose I'd tentatively recommend it.

AgentMunky, Oct 09, 2011
Great Lakes Eliot Ness from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 2,561 ratings.