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Dino's Dark - Lake Louie Brewery Company

Not Rated.
Dino's DarkDino's Dark

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

58 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 58
Reviews: 41
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 13.64%
Wants: 1
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Lake Louie Brewery Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: cokes on 05-04-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 58 | Reviews: 41 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of degerbah
3.48/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A smokey malt smell after a no-head pour into a tremens glass. Overall a solid american porter but nothing at all spectacular. A little more smokey than I prefer, but with nothing else really going for it. I got it as an extra so I can't be dissapointed, but I wouldn't buy it again.

degerbah, Aug 10, 2009
Photo of msubulldog25
2.65/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

12 oz. bottle, emptied to the 'Widmer' pint glass. Thanks go out to badbeer (who I hope sent 'good beer') for the hook-up.

A: Surprisingly light-colored for a porter, glowing auburn shows through a milk chocolate brown. Good head of fine bubbles, cresting around a finger, creamy khaki. Certainly bottle-conditioned, a fine sediment hangs and fogs the pour.

S: Ridiculous butterscotch aroma, detectable from 2 feet away. Up close, it smells much less of creme brulee, more of cocoa powder with a light acidic twang. Traces of smoke, a metallic grain husk, too. Not really oxidized-smelling in any way I've experienced previously, just not an appealing aroma for me.

T: Somewhat better taste than smell, that's good I suppose... Rich cocoa, light spice, caramel reduction, toasted nuts. Likable roasted grain flavor in the finish, a bit like a malted milkshake. Notable hints of buttery diacetyl: deduct.

M: A ho-hum thinness meets the tongue, smooth but without much body or character. Some carbonated tingle and a lasting spice develop a little, but nothing happens to pull this out of 'mediocrity' for me.

D: Too bad, I really hoped for good things here. Have tried a couple Lake Louie brews before with mixed results (Warped Speed was excellent, Mr Mephisto's disappointed); this goes down as my least favorite. Has an 'off' feel about it that I doubt is intentional. Thank you, Mike, for giving me a try, but I'd pass in the future if this is typical.

EDIT: After I posted, I read guezedude's review below mine; sounds like the same batch, same issues. Given that, I might have a second try at some point...

msubulldog25, Jul 09, 2009
Photo of Gueuzedude
2.85/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A vigorous pour has me noticing a distinct butterscotch note as well as producing a three-finger thick, lightly browned, tan colored head in my 25cl tulip glass. The beer is a blackened, concentrated amber color that shows a brilliantly clear, dark ruby color when held up to the light. The aroma is definitely heavily influenced by diacetyl, though at first it pairs decently with a toasted, lightly roast malt note. The diacetyl soon becomes annoying, though it at least doesn't become rancid.

Sweet malt flavors are noticeable up front as the beer first hits my tongue. An oral / nasal diacetyl component then comes in towards the middle and then an almost lactic like tartness kicks in. The finish has a toasted whole grain flavor as well as a touch of roasted malt bite. The diacetyl is not nearly as noticeable in the flavor as it was in the nose, but it is still here. This does have solid dark malt flavors, I just wish they were able to come out more (the flaws really mute my experience of them here).

This was certainly an experience. The bottle is likely infected, but it could just be poor yeast / fermentation management at this point too. I do get the sense that there is a tasty beer in here somewhere. In fact the flavor, despite the easily noticed flaws, isn't all that bad even.

Gueuzedude, Jun 20, 2009
Photo of Ragingbull
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A good beer. Black in color with light mocha head and mostly still. Smoke and coffee on the nose. Heavy smoked and roasted malt flavors that get more gentle as you approach the finish. The finish is clean and then the smokiness from the roasted malts kicks back in during the aftertaste. I actually picked up a pint of this at a coffee shop on the road in front of the capital in Madison. I researched the three porters from Lake Louie to be sure I am reviewing the correct beer and from reading the reviews I wonder if all of the reviews are on the correct beer as there appears to be overlap. This seems to be the Dino's from the majority of the reviews and I should just trust my server even though it was a barrista and not a bartender. Good beer though. It was a beautiful day and I sat on the patio, the whole experience was memorable and good. I am actually anxious to find some more offerings from this brewer.

Ragingbull, Jun 17, 2009
Photo of roadhouse
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass

Pours a chestnut brown color with some red highlights. A one inch cream colored head forms on top and subsequently falls down to a cap, but it retains well and leaves quite a bit of lacing.

Aroma has some chocolate notes to it, a slight coffee tinge, and some light hops. Quite mild overall but no off-aromas.

Taste has quite a bit of chocolate flavor up front, but there's some caramel sweetness as well. A nutty quality in the middle, almondy. Some floral hops towards the finish with lingering sweetness and light chocolate.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, very creamy and easy to drink.

This was definitely not what many Porters out there are. It's mild on the roasty flavors though it works well. I kept enjoying it more every sip and wish I had more. Oh Wisconsin, so close, yet so far away.

roadhouse, May 17, 2009
Photo of storksonm
4.38/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Mug

This is a great dark beer. after I cracked it open I smelled a sweet hoppy smell. When I poured it the head formed nicely but it didn't retain its head for too long. The taste was much like the smell of the beer but it was very rich with a robust hoppy smell with a bit of citrus to it that hung in the back of your throat and was very nice. Very smooth like many of the other lake louies I've had before. Its a very nice dark brew with a pleasant hop character that is an easy drink for anytime and anywhere.

storksonm, Apr 18, 2009
Photo of botham
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a new Sam Adams Glass. pours a rich chocolate brown with amber highlights and a half finger of tan head that takes a couple minutes to dissipate. moderate lacings.

aroma is of roasted malts and a bit of coffee, along with an earhty base and a subtle grassy hop quality that mixes well with the malt.

taste is mildly roasted up front, with notes of oak and a touch of molasses, all over a mildly earthy base that provides a warming quality to the brew. a subtle note of chocolate shows itself throughout comsumption as well.

mouthfeel is full bodied with a creamy smoothness that works perfectly with the flavors present. finishes smooth with some soft CO2 and residual bready and roasted malt as well as some oak.

drinkability is great. this is a solid porter, with enough aspects of its own to create a great beer. the profile resembles an oak aged brew, complete with the earthy notes and a wonderful smoothness, lending to a warming quality and rich complexity. this has to be one of, if not the, best brew from Lake Louie. cheers!

botham, Jul 30, 2008
Photo of emerge077
4.33/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted again, and was more impressed this time around.

Pours with a reddish glint at the bottom of the glass, otherwise dark brown. Small amount of foam with spotty lace.

Great aroma, distinct caramel toffee with some milkiness, and multigrain bread. Something earthy and herbal, maybe an inkling of hops when swirled.

Rich caramel maltiness, almost a smoky finish. Residual dry bitterness. Not too sweet, just about perfect. Adequate carbonation. Really exceeded my expectations. Tasty stuff, worth looking for in Wisconsin.

Original review 04/2007:
A seemingly average brew. Wouldn't have pegged it for a Porter.

Big and foamy tan head. Rings of lacing, it looks appealing. A good amount of sediment in the bottle.

Aroma of mild plum, and malt. Pleasant, not really big in this department though.

Taste is plum, nutty malt, slight bitterness. Fruitiness is a nice twist. Very thin mouthfeel. A unique ale to be sure. Easy to drink, but better Porters are out there. Seems more like a twist on a Brown Ale.

Thanks to thefatkid13 for this one...

emerge077, Jul 24, 2008
Photo of robbyc1
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black, no see through, with a slight head.

Can't tell much from the nose, a tight smell, just some roasty malt, no hops noticeable.

This is a great deep porter, very malty, lovely notes of chocolate, creamy and smooth. Web says this has more hops than their Tommy's Porter, but if there are hard to tell, they don't get involved with the deep flavor, wishing I held more than one of these. Can't think of a better tasting straight forward Porter.

Perfect heavyness, with a great feel in the mouth. No alcohol noticable, can't be very high. Very drinkable, goes down easy. Refreshing for a porter, find it!

robbyc1, Jul 18, 2008
Photo of grub
3.03/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Viggo was nice enough to share this one. thanks eric!

12oz bottle. sampled june 20/08.

pours deep brown, not quite black, with a small dense dark tan head. the head drops quickly and leaves a few spots of lace.

aroma is nice. quite fruity. bit of dark chocolate. molasses. maybe some maple too. bit of almond. there's a bit of artificial chocolate or something in there too.

taste is ok. fruity and kind of sweet. toasted raisin bread maybe? bit of maple/molasses character too. slightly artificial chocolate. hint of roast, less than i'd expect. bit of alcohol. low bitterness level. hint of citrus.

mouthfeel is nice. medium bubbly soda-like carbonation. just under medium body.

drinkability is ok. this one misses the mark in my eyes. too fruity and sweet, not enough roast/bitterness, almost no trace of hops, and the alcohol is a bit too present.

grub, Jun 21, 2008
Photo of Viggo
3.9/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle I believe in trade from EliteDigger. Thanks Scott!

Pours an opaque and cloudy brownish red, thin off white head forms, quickly settles to a thin ring, a few lace spots. Smell is caramel, some light roast and chocolate, nice coffee roast, theres some light fruits and a bit of orange, some bready malt, quite nice. Mouthfeel is very grainy, and very dry and roasty, chocolate, sweet orangey fruit character through the middle, milk chocolate and vanilla in the finish, dry bread, pretty neat. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low to medium carbonation, neat and drinkable.

Viggo, Jun 21, 2008
Photo of brewcrew76
3.73/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Deep brown with ruby highlights and a thin creamy tan head that

S - Plum with grassy hops and a touch of malt and chocolate. maybe slightly metallic as it warms.

T - Slightly sweet malt with plums, nuts and some earthy, grassy hops.

M - Very thin and watery.

D - A very unique beer that reminds me of a cross between a brown ale and london porter. This could be a regular sessionable beer easily.

brewcrew76, Jun 06, 2008
Photo of Erdinger2003
4.08/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured it strong and got a good 1/4 inch head and a good lacing came with that. The color is dark, let's some light in through the edges, but not much. Lake Louie seems to have it's own smell, I talked to Tommy during my tour of the place and he said himself he didn't go by styles, he just brewed what he thought was good. The smell is slightly roasty and has no off smells. The taste is chocolatey with some good roastiness in the backbone. I'm surprised at the chocolate flavors, when this was colder the flavor of chocolate barely came out and the beer seemed too roasty, but now the chocolate is what's really making it a very enjoyable beer. The mouthfeel is good, low carbonation bite and easy to drink like all Lake Louie products. Overall, the more I have this beer the better it gets, so I will have as much of this as will be allowed!!

Erdinger2003, May 02, 2007
Photo of joe1510
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. Bottle
$8.29 6-Pack
Steve's Liquor Madison

Dino's Dark poured garnet with big deep mahogany highlights. A half finger creamy beige head formed on the pour that settled to a thin skim of foam up top. When not held away from the light this beer is as black as night. Leaves patchy lacing after each sip. Looks good.

As I inhale this beer I get a nose full of sweet lightly roasted malts. The roasted malts are the main aroma but there is a very nice compliment of toffee and freshly ground coffee aromas that creep through. There's even some dark fruit involved here in the form of plum and fig. Mild floral hop scent on the backend.

Roasted malts upfront in the flavor as well. Much like the aroma there is a solid toffee sweetness that comes through mid-palate and sticks around through the finish. Mild coffee shows up on the finish. Flavors meld together very subtly to make a very enjoyable brew. Mild floral hop bite on the finish. Very nice.

Medium bodied with minimal carbonation lets this beer woirks it's way through slowly. Smooth and creamy. Small hop bitterness on the finish, very small.

This is definately an easy beer to put away. Good sipper with subtle enough flavors to keep me wanting more.

My first offering from Lake Louie and it's definately a good one. Very solid porter with some minor stout like tendancies. Pick it up if you see it.

joe1510, Apr 29, 2007
Photo of BlindPig
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Huge! tan head (to give you a idea I poured it into a regular pint glass and theres a bit more than half a bottle left). I don't think I poured to hard at all either. The body is a murky brown.
S- Big chocolate and roasted malts, bit of a chocolaty sweetness to it along with some grass hops to help balance it out.
T- Some chocolate and light roasted malts. Has a big nut character. Light bitterness lingers on tongue but with still a big malt and nut character on tongue.
M- Medium to full body with medium carbonation.
D- It is ok. Has a few flavors that seem kind of off but other than that it is ok. Wouldn't try to hard to get another one.

BlindPig, Feb 03, 2007
Photo of bjohnson
3.05/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Received in a trade from nflmvp. Thanks for the opportunity.

A: Whooaa momma...pours a four finger head! Calms down after awhile. Cream colored and pillow like looking. Dark brown colored. Puffy sticky lacing.
S: An odd roasted metallic like aroma emanates from this brew.
T/M: Roasted malts with slight sweet chocolate notes. Woody and charcoal like notes. Slight hop presence also. A bit too carbonated for this guy. An odd fruity taste also is detected. Medium to light body as it's a bit thin. Bitter aftertaste that's dry.
D: I imagine this could be a good porter, although this one was a bit too carbonated and metallic for my tastes.

bjohnson, Jan 24, 2007
Photo of mcallister
2.9/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Good looking porter. Nice deep brown with a off white head that fades at a gradual pace. Leaving a thin sticky lace.

Sour fruity esters with a weak chocolate background. Not too appeasing to the senses.

A thin watery mouth leads too bitter chocolate, anise, and other dark fruits but lacks any depth. Not what I was anticipating from this beer from this brewery but I would like to sample a fresher bottle.

Thanks to NFLMVP for the opportunity.

mcallister, Nov 10, 2006
Photo of ppoitras
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle obtained via trade with kmpitz2. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 3" brown head over the clear reddish brown brew. Head lasts and lasts, due to huge amounts of bubbles flying up from the bottom of the glass, with plentiful sticky lacing. Aroma is tart fruitiness and rich dark grains. Flavor is moderate malty sweetness, with only a tinge of fruitiness, and a balanced close and aftertaste. Mouthfeel is good, with slightly limited drinkability due to the tartness I wish wasn't there. Probably the least impressive Lake Louie product I've had, yet still pretty good.

ppoitras, Oct 05, 2006
Photo of Brian700
3.93/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one pours dark plack with a brown head that fizzled away pretty fast. It had big bubbles in the head the looked like the head on a coke.

The aroma was nice and roasty with some mild pungeancy going on.

The flavor was quite nice and it had what I percieved to be almost a lactic edge to it. It was pretty interesting. I don't know if it was just this particular bottle because I only have one of them but the touch of sourness made the beer I thought.

The mouthfeel was medium/full bodied with moderate carbonation.

This is a pretty drinkable beer. I'd like to try it again and see if my bottle was a tad off of if that is the norm.

Brian700, Sep 02, 2006
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.13/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Orange-infused chestnut on the coaster, dark cherry when backlit with weak morning sunlight. The exceptionally creamy cap is the color of cinnamon ice cream and is sticky enough to deposit thick sheets of abstract-patterned lace. Some heads just look better than others and this one looks fabulous! I know that I'm about to experience a quality beer just by looking at it.

The nose is good, though not outstanding. It's sufficiently roasted malty with notes of bittersweet chocolate and hops with a hint of molasses; almost no coffee that I can detect. With more nostril-filling power it would achieve the next highest score easily.

Although it hasn't been that long since I drank it, I don't recall what Tommy's Porter tasted like (other than the fact that I loved it, of course). I only mention it because Dino's Dark is a less malty, more hoppy version of Tommy's. My immediate reaction upon learning that was that I'd like this beer better, but now that I've had a few ounces, I'm not so sure.

Yeah, I love hops with a passion, but porters should first and foremost be nice and malty. Hoppy accents are then more than welcome. While Dino's is very good beer, I don't believe that the malt backbone is quite sturdy enough. I appreciate the whole 'spring porter' thing that Lake Louie was going for, but lighter isn't an improvement in this case (or in very many cases that I can think of).

Having said all that, this is tasty stuff and is becoming more so as I get into the heart of the bottle. Coffee is now at least at prominent as chocolate and I can appreciate the amped-up hop load. Mildly sweet is favored early in the flavor arc and mildly bitter is favored late. The (slight) lack of malt and the zing from the hops gives the beer a crisp, clean finish that sets it well apart from Tommy's Porter.

No surprise, I suppose, that the body is less than huge given the fact that the brewers set out to create a lighter, snappier beer. The mouthfeel is still of high quality from top to bottom and I'm happy to report that it isn't ruined by a too-boisterous amount of carbonation.

Dino's Dark isn't quite the beer that I'd hoped it would be, but I'm still enjoying the hell out of the bottle. The bottom line is that it's a lighter, more hoppy, incredibly drinkable version of the outstanding Tommy's Porter. Lake Louie continues to impress and I'm beginning to think that they're the single best craft brewery in Wisconsin. And I haven't even had Warped Speed Scotch Ale yet.

BuckeyeNation, Aug 05, 2006
Photo of UncleFlip
3.7/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

The head leaps up in the glass- nealry filling the pint beofre any liquid appears underneath. It's a light tan colour, with a cola colour liquid slowly appearing under. The light coming through the liquid is a nice dark amber to ruby.

Smell is nice and bready, with a bit of hops folded in. There's an element just slightly like wet dishrag, and a bit of smoke.

The flavour is thin and woody, with some hop bitterness ad sweeter smoke. Very consistent throughout.

Body is almost a bit watery, with a higher than expected carbonation.

Desite some shortcomings, this one is drinkable- but not overly so.

Be well
-UF

UncleFlip, Jul 22, 2006
Photo of dirtylou
4.05/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz single, Steve's - University, $1.59

appearance: poured into a mash house pint glass...light mahogany that is strongly tinted amber, 1/2" foam head that doesn't seem in a hurry to subside...interesting porter, leaning towards the spring-porter classification in appearance

smell: sweet roasted malt, molasses, milky, smooth caramel, mild latte aroma...faint but pleasant

taste: lake louie doesnt miss often (ever?) and this is no exception....a very pleasant spring porter. creamy and milky, sweet roasted malt, mild hop undertone, slightly woody, touch of caramel, toffee. a nice mild porter

mouthfeel: milky, creamy, and smooth as one would come to expect from Lake Louie

drinkability: high

dirtylou, May 24, 2006
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.22/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer pours a black opaque body with a creamy light tan head that last and last. It has a good strong carbonation of tiny bubbles.

S- This beer smells of brown malt with a faint molasses sweetness.

T- The taste of brown malt has a nice faint black roasted malt note in the background with a tart note in the finish. There is also a faint green hop flavor after the tartness. The malt has good complexity with a faint note of chocolate and earthiness with some flavors of cola in the finish.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a faint watery texture in the finish.

D- This beer has nice malt complexity with unique flavors of cola and a tartness that is interesting.

rhoadsrage, May 22, 2006
Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.3/5  rDev +15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a single at Riley's here in Madison.

Pours a deep, dark garnet with a short skim of khaki foam. Nose is bready, roasted malt and minty hops. Taste starts off doughy, transitioning into notes of cool vanilla, sweet milk caramel, charred coffee, and minty hops. Mouthfeel is chewy yet smooth and quite drinkable. I liked this quite a bit more than their Tommy's Porter, of which this is supposed to be a hoppier, summer version. Another tasty Lake Louie brew.

Golden2wenty1, May 17, 2006
Photo of orbitalr0x
4.22/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours from the bottle a deep dark brown bordering on black with a half inch of light bubbly tan head. Aroma is dark roasty, slightly smoky malts with a nice dose of chocolate, caramel and a subtle hoppiness. Mild coffee dusting. Good, clean aroma.

First sip brings a smooth roasty maltiness, almost a touch burnt with cocoa and caramel accents. A smidge of coffee works its way in alongside a dose of piney hoppiness on the way down. Smooth and tasty, this is a good brew. Unexpected hop burps show up halfway through the glass!

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and goes down easy and refreshing. Good carbonation. This is a good dark brew/porter that would make a good session beer if it was more readily available to me. Cheers once again to Lake Louie for producing a fine product. I gotta get up to Arena one of these days!

orbitalr0x, May 03, 2006
Dino's Dark from Lake Louie Brewery Company
85 out of 100 based on 58 ratings.